Friday, August 20, 2004

I survived the 3 days of FTL training at the ISD :-) Day one was OK, lots of technical difficulties but overall it went fairly well, although I was shocked at the lack of technology skills among the lead teachers there. Day two went well enough except there were too many participants for Tammy and I alone to facilitate. It was pretty much a zoo! Day three went so smoothly it was amazing. I felt like it was a huge success. I suppose practice does make perfect but I was amazed at how that group just seemed so much more receptive in general than the Wednesday group.

Now onto the next phase, training downstate... eeeeekkkkk.... we meet (the 6 of us reps to finalize the planningon Sep 3, then on the 15th, we do the REAL thing. I know things will go well - the "6" are all wonderful, invigorated SuperCoaches who seem enthusiastic and willing to do above and beyond to make this program successful so I feel confident we will be awesome...right???

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

I feel like the world is spinning tooooo quickly and I am about to fly off into outer space!! School is quickly approaching - 1 more full week to go - my room is almost all set but then yesterday when I was there I realized my requisition was in, which is a good thing, but now to put it all away in my clean, oh so clean cupboards!

FTL training at the ISD started yesterday - easy day for me - I was just a "facilitator" with Tammy & Robin up on board for most of everything - lots of tech problems but there were only 6 there for the training and it went OK for the most part. I do feel overwhelmed at how little some of the lead teachers know about computers/technology in general. They are to be the experts in their district, but some of them have such limited skills. Today I was up for my middle school lesson, which went well, I felt. We will see again tomorrow since it looks as if Scott will be gone, so I will fill his slot by replicating my lesson for the high school teachers. I plan to spend a bit more time thinking/talking through the NTeQ model. I really don't think we are giving teachers nearly enough info to be successful in integrating technology. We are trying to cram so much into the time we have we are not really covering anything adequately. And the irony of that comment, WE FINISHED EARLY TODAY!! We ran short yesterday so we pushed and rushed today only to find ourselves done early :-)

I feel a bit initimidated that I am not more knowledgeable about the programs, especially Discourse, but we've not had much opportunity to play with it ourselves, and it is one of those things, much like PowerSchool/PowerGrade, where until you actually do it yourself, you will not be able to understand all the little ins/outs of the program.

Big shock in our district - Kristi resigned.... she is probably the BEST teacher at TAS....was, the best.... how will they ever replace her?? and more selfishly, who will replace her as lead teacher??

Good luck to me tomorrow.. and Pat if you read this... it was great to have you here today. Thanks for driving all the way here from Bessemer... I hope we can work it out so you can train closer to home in the future!

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

My presentation for next week's FTL training is finally finished, I think!! Yes, I changed it AGAIN! I reverted to an M& M lesson, much like the one we did in Lansing, but we will be making circle graphs instead of bar graphs, since that is the 7th grade expectation. My powerpoint is not anything dramatic, but it will have to do.

I've been trying to get in touch with the lead teachers from the Eastern UP to get them registered. GRRRR.... it is so hard to get in touch with people in the summertime! Still, I think we will have a good turn out, and it will be worthwhile for those teachers. I really feel the biggest responsibilty we as Super Coaches have is to get folks fired up about this program.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Another FTL meeting yesterday - drove all the way to Lansing for 2 hours, but those 2 hours were powerpacked. We fine tuned the presentations we will giving for lead teachers.

I am just so pumped up about this whole program, still...

I've been working on a lesson to present at our ISD training coming up in a couple of weeks and I've created 3 total lessons but I think I've finally decided to stick with the original plan we are using at the lead teacher training, the M&M lesson. I think it will work well mainly because most people are already somewhat familiar with using this lesson so they will see the relevance, and ease of integrating technology into existing lessons. It's not so much that I am unsure of presenting, as I want to make sure what I do makes a lasting impression on those teachers, and gets them fired up about the potential of the FTL program, so they in turn can get the others in their buildings fired up.

One concern... a teacher from another district said his union is boycotting the entire FTL program - they don't have a contract for the upcoming school year, and are not going to take on any new anything... that scares me - we are also without contract and historically are reluctant to take on new things... especially without additional compensation. I guess if that is what happens, I will have to say, bring it on... I'll take all those new computers... and enjoy them!!
Let's just hope it does not get to that point..

To ISD tomorrow to work on presentation...