I am so honored to be part of three of the Edublog best of the Web 2013 Finalists.
I can not believe it that the virtual debate that Melissa Butler and I organized is a finalist for best use of Video and Media! This debate which I blogged about here, and which you can learn more about by going to the Virtual Debate website, is so close to my heart. It was truly one of the greatest experiences of my teaching career, and I loved seeing how engaged and excited the SOMS students were. It really showed how technology when used correctly, can be a game changer in education and truly break down the classroom walls.
I am also honored to be nominated as part of the TL News Night Crew, in not only the Best Use of Video and Media category but also the Best Podcast or Hangout category. Once a month a group of teacher librarians from different part of the US, get together with state library associations to talk about the state of school libraries. We talk about the good and bad and also hear about all the really amazing things that different State School Library Associations are doing. It is on the 3rd Monday of the month (we are taking this month off) and the host are as follows: Michelle Cooper, Nikki D. Robertson, Sherry Gick, Sue Levine, and Shannon Miller. I love working with this amazing crew each month and I always leave the hour learning so much and getting some great ideas.
The last nominations that I am a part of is the #ptchat radio network. Every week on Wednesday nights at 9pm EST, I help to co-moderate #ptchat which is a weekly chat involving teachers, parents, administrators and national organizations. We discuss a wide variety of topics related to education. As a supplement to the chat, Dr. Joe Mazza the founder of #ptchat leads a weekly #ptchat podcast in which different moderators and guests discuss this weeks topic in more depth. I am so excited to see it included as one of the best podcasts.
I never in my wildest dreams thought that I would be included in any of these things but especially our little debate as a finalist for Best Use of Video and Media in Education alongside such greats as Khan Academy and TeacherCast. I am so humbled.
If you would like to vote for any of these you can by clicking on the links above.
These are some of my favorite blogs! I learn from them every day. Sadly I can only nominate one..
I am finally getting a chance to reflect on the past two months of PD that I have been exposed to and let me say it has been an amazing experience.
At the end of September I was honored to be asked to attend the School Library Journal Summit which is two days of learning and sharing from the school library leaders. The conversations that occurred at the tables and in the sessions challenged my thinking and helped me make some decisions about how I want my library to look and feel. It was because of the discussions at this conference that I moved to generfication of my fiction area. And I am so happy I did.
I then participated and spoke at a number of technology conference around NJ including Edscape & NJAET. I love Edscape and I loved the group of educators who were a part of it. George Couros's keynote was funny, inspirational and very thought provoking. The panel discussion on connected educators that I was part of turned into such an amazing discussion on PD and being a connected educator. I loved hearing all the different views and thoughts and was honored to be on the panel with Thomas Murray, Joe Mazza, Rich Kiker, Jeff Bradbury, Dana Sirotiak, Melissa Butler, and Bill Krakower. I also loved being able to see so many of my friends and PLN. Eric Sheninger always puts on a amazing discussion and it was fun to be a part of the it.
NJAET brought me Layar! I had been using Aurasma for a year to do Augmented Reality with my students but did not really love how complicated it was to do. I was sitting in a session with Countney Pope and she showed us Layar and I have never looked back. Layar is much easier to use and does not require users to follow a channel like Aurasma.
AASL was another amazing conference where I learned so much from so many great librarians and half the learning occurred not in sessions but from conversations. It is also great to see so many of my friends and PLN. Finally getting to meet Nikki Robertson in person was so great!
I end up my two months of learning with Edcamp NJ. For the second year a group of administrators and teachers got together to lead of free day of learning to teachers. Edcamp has no agenda or sessions. People propose sessions when they get there and people volunteer to lead them. You can be in one session where a superintendent is telling teachers what he looks for when hiring teachers and in the next session a retired teacher is taking about storytelling. I love this type of PD so much. It is truly choose your own learning.
I am a huge fan of PD and believe that it is what helps us grow as educators. The world is changing, education is changing and it our jobs as educators to change and adjust to it. The internet is not a fad that is going to go away. You need to embrace it and learn how to grow and conference like the ones I attended help to make that happen.
Elissa Malespina is the Middle School Teacher Librarian in Somerville and a Presenter, Author and much more. The views are my own. Find my full resume above.