Dec 7, 2013

#aesa2013 9a - Saturday - Balanced and Blended Experiences

#aesa2013 9a - Saturday - Balanced and Blended Experiences

Why I chose this:
I am hoping to see something about blended learning, though I'm not sure that is what this session focuses on, though. We will see!

What I learned:

Supporting teachers and principals in blended learning environments. Digital Resource Library available through ESCs to districts.

MUltiple learning opportunities in which students engage peer-to-peer, student-to-teacher, teacher-to-student (though not through the traditional model).

Compare education to retail: Open information and resources; transparent experiences; feedback, collaboration, grading on products - occurring 24/7

Ex: YELP - Find out what everyone else is saying about those restaurants. TripAdvisor, etc.

Customized experience in retail - How can this/does this transform education? Look at Amazon/Groupon. Geography - where you are determines the deals and places you would go to based on what you like and what you have done in the past.

Apple/Google - Create blended learning opportunities for their clients. Predictive, custom, Face-to-face (Genius bar)

Retail did not adapt: Borders, Blockbuster, Bennigans

Mobile learning, sharing resources, anytime/anywhere access

Data teachers can track, monitor and customize the learner's experience through quick, responsive feedback. Assess academic readiness, learning styles, environmental info, etc - transparent with what we know about that student and his/her guardian.

Use the various tools to create learning pathways for the students based on the information gathered about the student.  A blended environment provides a multi-faceted approach to student learning and engagement.

Think about: What are were the needs of society across the ages? What roles did educators/administrators play in each of these ages?

  • Agricultural Age - Farming, helping with family, being able to be out of school for farming 
  • Industrial Age - Prepare students to work in the factories
  • Information Age 
  • Conceptual Age 
Video presentation demonstrated type of content available through their platform for adult PD. The particular video shown featured a "talking head" with a cut-away to various slides. Different angles (mid-shots, long-shots) were used, basically only changing after one of the slides was put up in the video. It is delivered in a very "lecturesque" manner. I suppose in a flipped scenario, the participants could watch this on their own prior to the PD event, and the PD event would focus on discussion and learning.

In schools, we have several challenges: content-expert models, age-based grouping instead of skill-based grouping or knowledge-based grouping

What does it mean to be a leader in the Conceptual Age?
Shift in professional development to a blended environment, modeling what they can do in their classroom. Moving to a data-capture environment (LMS keeping track of what learners say, think, learn). Redeisgning instructional systems. 

Co-Construct Meaning = Understanding a new concept and co-constructing that with folks. We don't push or pull, but rather bring them along together. 

Communicating the Story- Understand the vision, people need to be part of that story and make sure they feel they are a part of it.

Create the Conditions - Mirror PD environments as to what we'd like to see in the classrooms: blended, traditional, etc.

"Teacher as Architect" - Book. Classroom Tools, Planning Templates, PD Kits

Revenue-generation program between TAA and the Education Service Agency.

Platform agnostic, though they have content already prepped for Safari Montage.

$2500 for ESC program that can be resold/delivered to schools. 

Face-to-Face PD Kits (can be blended). There are self-paced, self-driven online courses in conjunction with the f2f pieces.

This system is like the TIE program SWAEC hosts, though much more fleshed out. 

And I won a book! Wahoo!!

Dec 6, 2013

#aesa2013 - Fri 2:45p - Increase Student Achievement Through Alternative Funding

#aesa2013 - Fri 2:45p - Increase Student Achievement Through Alternative Funding

Why I chose this:
Interested in learning ways to help districts pull money in from places they may not have considered.

What I learned:

Education Technology Foundation
-- Give money back to the schools. Schools apply for awards specifically in instructional technology. The main purpose is to increase student achievement.

Generate and distribute funding to support technology programs that increase achievement.

Had to become official: articles of incorporation, by-laws, 501(3c) status as required. Available on the aesa website - take it and modify it. Need to check how a 501(3c) can be set up via co-op - not use state money, use locally-earned money (from districts using/paying for co-op services)

Advisory Board - Supts, Community/Business leader, cross-section of service area.

  • Develop framework of the foundation
  • Approve mission, vision, bylaws
  • Develop standard operating procedures, funding applications and allocations
  • Develop tactics to develop funding
  • implement funding cycle (year one)
  • Community awareness
  • Identify board prospects
  • Build the board
ESC Staff
  • Complete legal process of entity formation
  • Manage day-to-day operations
  • Support work of the board members and future board
  • E-Rate Consulting Services, separate entity so the ESC can file for E-Rate as its own entity.
  • Discretionary Funds from ESC by cutting other jobs prior to this
  • Individuals or teams involved in student instruction, must be employed by member districts
  • Timeline: Nov/Dec call for apps, due end of Jan; Feb board scores apps; March grants get awarded for the program to start the following September.
  • Grants awarded up to $5000 for teacher, groups up to $10000
  • 7 grants awarded, $59,888 distributed. Avg grant $8555. 
  • Spend 2/3rds, keep 1/3rd
  • 1783 students served, 125+ staff served
PR Pieces
  • Told Supt, but not grant recipient. Surprise for the recipient
  • Created big checks
  • Local newspaper, online props
  • Board Development
  • Strategic Plan
  • Adequate source of funding (vendor partnerships, etc)
  • Approve budget
  • Monitor stewardship
  • Set policy

#aesa2013 - Friday - 1:30pm - EPS: Educational Positioning System

#aesa2013 - Friday - 1:30pm - EPS: Educational Positioning System

Why I chose this:
Interested to see what other co-ops are doing to help with school review and improvement. Also, it's being presented by the Director of ESSDACK, Mike Cook.

What I learned:

The EPS tool was developed by CORE Education in New Zealand.

GPS for where your school is headed.

Three main components:

  • Philosophical Frameworks (What you believe and why)
  • Strategies and Structures
  • Community and Culture
The middle color section shows your 50th percentile in each category. Information is gathered from surveys. To me, this is similar to BrightBytes, but on a broader scale than "just" technology.

Each section has 4 tasks/questions to answer, which are broken into: Robustness, Collectivity, Consistency, and Congruence.

Ideally, you want data grouped together and at the highly developed end of the spectrum.

Data wheels show overall views of School Leadership, Teachers, Support Staff, Community, and Students.

Be careful not to use "educational-ese" when formulating the questions. Educate the community in the terminology. The tool itself begins to change the vernacular of the community. 

Important to involve members from each area and have conversations to plan strategically. Ultimately, decide what is important. From there, develop plans to address issues.

You run the surveys a couple times a year, not once every five years.

Superintendent/School admins can determine what questions are in the survey and what is being measured.

Can use sliders to compare where the school currently sits and where the 'ideal' sits.

Can use Wordle to take the open-responses answers and discover the most frequently-used terms and have the people find the terms used (or NOT used). "Why is 'respect' so small?" "Why are negative words larger?"

ESSDACK can help get the program started in your ESC. This is a sustaining program - long-term, analyzing.  Year-long agreement, but can survey as many times, in as many ways, as you want.  Schools interested should contact their ESA about getting the program set up.

Cost is based per-student plus set-up fees per building. Between $1-$2 per student, depending on district size. 

Dec 5, 2013

#aesa2010 thursday 3pm - Learning Business by Being One

#aesa2010 thursday 3pm - Learning Business by Being One

Why I chose this:
Learning how to teach students to be entrepreneurial. Led by Kevin Honeycutt and Ginger Lewman!

What I learned:

Tell students to be a "public genius." Tell them to publish if it's good. If it isn't good, tell them to edit them publish!

STEM needs the A - who else would design it!? STEAM

Do students know they are competing with the whole world? Learn to birth ideas.

The Maker Movement - make things that belong to the students.

What tools are available to students to create?

Contest: 1) Nothing illegal, nothing immoral. Kids make lip balm, sell it market it, create website, enable ecommerce. Sell it worldwide. Highest profit at the end wins.

"The Coming Jobs War" - Jim Clifton

It takes time and sacrifice to get where they need to go. We have to teach students this.

Tools into toys, toys into tools - what are we making with the most powerful tools we have!?

Students must choose to move ahead. Teach them to WAIT and earn what they want.

When you have success, call the media. Make the STUDENTS the stars of the news.

Why matters more than How!

Simulate the things they will have to do as soon as you show them what they will be doing.

"A rabbit takes her young out to the grass to show how to feed, where it is... If it were a school, there'd be a Smart Board in the hole with a picture of grass that's 10 feet away."

Students have to learn how to learn. Teach students to teach themselves. - click on the toolbox!

L2L2L - Love 2 Love 2 Learn!

Learn to market yourself: What do you look like when you google yourself?

Google Alerts: set up an alert for themselves. How do you see yourself? How do others see you?

Spoonflower: Upload a design and it will print it as fabric, wallpaper, decals, etc!

Tunecore - sell your music online, audiobook, ringtones

#aesa2013 Thursday 1:30p - Foundations of Flipped Learning

#aesa2013 Thursday 1:30p - Foundations of Flipped Learning

Why I chose this:
I am always interested in different ways educational material can be presented. In my effort to build on my ever-growing knowledge of blended, flipped, and other non-traditional classrooms, I am hoping this will add to my awareness.

What I learned: partnered with ESC in Milton, PA to offer services to area schools.

"What is the best use of my face-to-face class time?"
Direct Instruction

Not just classroom - how about board meetings, professional development, parent-teacher night, other meetings, etc.

Flipped Classrooms vs Flipped Learning
Flipped Classroom - Direct lecture to moved from classroom to individual learning space (home, library, etc). Basically becomes homework.

Flipped Learning - Move from teacher-centered classroom to a student-centered learning environment.

  • Does not happen overnight - process. Start with lesson, collaborate, create.
  • Extended Lab Time
  • Demos, conversations, model congress/un, etc
  • Art shows
  • Entrepreneurial Programs
Leads to various teaching methods:
  • Mastery Learning
  • Project/Problem learning/inquiry
  • Peer instruction
  • Socratic method
  • Performances
  • Writers' Workshops
  • Service Learning

Flipped is a subset of Blended Learning - Engagement is at center.
"We have a square and a rectangle." (as said by a workshop participant)

Tools of the Trade

  • Desktop, laptop, mobile
  • Camera
  • Microphone
  • Wall Displays
  • Subject-specific instruments
  • Lecture capture software
  • Storage site
  • Learning analytics
  • Method(s) for communication
  • Curate (YouTube, Kahn, etc), create you own or hybrid of that (copyright, CCL, free, fee)
  • Assessments (surveys, quizzes, formative summative)

Edgar Dale's Cone of Learning - 90% of memory - simulate, model, experiment.
Bloom's Revised Taxonomy
Norman Webb's Depth of Knowledge levels

Foundations of Flipped Learning
PA ESC worked with teachers and a Pearson Flipped program to learn more and support other teachers in the region. Funded via grant money initially, so they wanted to sustain the program. Totally teacher driven (13 teachers) - collaborating, they took the foundations of flipped learning course, no pay offered to teachers but offered things like some tech equipment and sent them to flippedcon. The teachers developed their own method of communication. Some use Facebook, some wikispaces. Storing videos on a 'relay server.' The ESC serves to help get the group to meet together face-to-face and/or help get resources requested. ESC asked for teachers to keep data - be honest: working, not working, etc. Most teachers in their cohort are science and math - more in-depth material and more material being covered. Assessments show growth and understanding.

Some districts were already recording content for absent students but not doing the flipped side. Snagit or Camtasia used to record screens. Teachers were given some training. Initial videos were rough, but have gotten better over time. Eduvision is a streaming server with subchannels to store the video in one place in the district.

PD for teachers: Flipped Learning Essentials (JDL Horizons)

Teach the teachers about the technology. Teach the students the application of the technology (they already know or will quickly pick up on the technology).

Four Pillars of Flipped Learning -

Combat Four Myths and Misconceptions

  • Myth: Flipped Learning is all about videos. One example using recorded info: Writer workshop, teacher screen-records the student's paper, making comments and marks, then emails to student. Another: Teach how to analyze videos, etc.
  • Myth: Flipped Learning Creates a Digital Divide - If you assign content as homework, students must have access (DVD, media centers, ipods, etc). Greg Green Clintondale 
  • Flipped Learning relies on Homework: must be decided within the culture of the districts and/or esc area.  
  • Flipped Learning Propagates Bad Teaching: Bad teaching is bad teaching. Period.

Examine Research

  • Innovative, creative
  • 85% over 7 yrs teaching experience
  • 91% flipped for less than 2 yrs
  • 95% secondary ed teachers
  • Urban, rural, suburban, etc (anywhere, everywhere)
  • 88% teachers reported improved job satisfaction
Case Study - Byron High School in Minnesota

#aesa2013 - 10:45am - Not All About the Numbers

#aesa2013 - 10:45am - Not All About the Numbers

Why I chose this:
I am interested in learning what is needed for the "next generation" of cooperative services through contracted services and programs.

What I learned:
Billed as something of a "Pricing 101" course.

Pricing is not an exact science. Must understand the variable that affect pricing decisions.

Cost Centers - mini businesses within the agency with their own budgets and revenue monitoring. Each department chair is responsible for those cost centers (some departments have multiple cost centers). They are expected to break even, but not all do and that is addressed at year end.

Various approaches:

Scientific Approach - Calculate actual costs plus overhead and investment. Salary, benefits, indirect cost rate, investment factor, based on 194 days/7.5 hrs per day. $885/day, $118/hour. Did not work well because it used the same pricing model at every situation. Made sense, but didn't work well with school participation - price seen as too high for some services.

Sky Pick

Copy Cat - Does not deal with actual costs.

Going Rate - Also does not deal with actual costs.

One Size Fits All

Price is critical - communicates a lot about the product or service, many link price with quality, free=low quality, expensive=high quality

Consider: Supply/cost, Demand/revenue, perceptions, competition and strategies, gov regulation, organization's desired pricing position.

Amount of service and demand for service must be met, always moving and changing. Dept heads must be able to figure this. Any price changes are done AFTER the fiscal year.

Just because you can justify a price with figures, it still might not be right for the market.

Positive price - Actual price
Normative Price - cost based on what consumer will pay. People must understand why they are being charged ("Why can't you do this for free?")

Offer similar services and make a case for quality, perception, prestige. What is the value-added piece?

Consumers' perception of the value they are getting, even if the reality doesn't match (GM Employee Pricing to general public)

Prestige pricing - hard to live in a world of exclusivity for services/products.

Know variable costs, fixed costs, balance profitability with palatability.  Don't get bogged down in fixed costs, but definitely consider those. May not have to be calculated into the actual cost of service/product.

We need a defensible pricing platform because people can and will research other providers. So, what do we offer that makes it value-added?

We spend a lot of time on pricing, so we must build value into what we offer.

How do we create that culture? Track record helps. Showing results from other similar programs. Show how districts can save money.

What should it cost to take part in consortium buying (bidding)?
Increase the fee to consumer. Some have an agreement with vendors for a percentage return for administrative costs based on the bids.

What are issues to consider?

What should it cost to provide a day's worth of professional development? Survey the market. Districts overlook prep time. Clerical support, follow-up, etc. How much are you saving the district in costs to send their folks elsewhere? Take into account a 'loss-leader' approach. Look at long-term earning potential.

Providing a technology audit. What price? Travel, personnel, competition. What is value to your process versus competition approach? What info are you providing? What follow-up?

Price of particular products (books, etc)? Make sure that districts do not get better price by going through the vendor directly.

A key is that you have personnel that will ensure the success of what you are offering - especially in new programs that you are trying to develop for future growth.

You may ultimately decide that a service/product is not worth offering.

Competition? Repeat customer, brand new service, loss leader, etc...

#aesa2013 Thursday Opening and Keynote

#aesa2013 Thursday Opening and Keynote

High School Students perform mariachi. Very cool!

Stephen Aguirre, President of AESA:

Dr. Yong Zhao:

@YongZhaoUO - Twitter; 

"Civilizations die by suicide... Education in America is heading down that path."

"We are fixing our schools, but to what end?" 

"Race to the Top" - Are we at the top yet? No. 

Bush/Obama actually working together...
Bush: Let's have no child left behind and Obama says let's race them to the top and push them off the cliff.

Nothing wrong with standards, just don't make them "common" nor "core."

Common Core promises that if she follows CCSS, she will be ready for college and career. Is that a good goal? Can you really guarantee that? 

New measure for education: "Out of the basement success" - what do you need to stay out of the parents' basement. Talent to gain financial independence. Live independently psychologically. Be able to handle community - social independence. 

50% college grades unemployment. 50% of employed college grads in jobs that require no degree. Companies complaining that potential employees do not have the necessary talents.

In the past, the USA had been churning out people to fill routine jobs. Technology changed that: robots on assembly lines. "It sucks to lose your job to a machine." - Look at self-checkout.  Tax agents replaced by online tools. In addition, globalization has moved millions of jobs to other countries.

The new economy: Disappearance of the middle class. Bi-polar growth. Our job as educators is to recreate the middle class. Who is the new middle class? Rise of the creative class - Facebook. Apple. Not a lot of employees.  We need to shift creativity to our schools. Today, creativity is job security. We must help our children become creative. Our schools were not designed to build creativity. Our schools were designed as 'sausage makers.' Creativity is annoying - cause disruption. Schools suppress creativity. Very little is written about children and creativity. Books focus on making our sausages better. China has no education, it has test preparation. Complaint people, uncreative people - PARCC, Smarter Balance - Imperial Exams in China. Clearly defined outcomes, standards, and format of assessment. America follows this same homogenized model. 

Children at age 5, 98% creative genius. At age 10, 32%, at age 15 only 10% can be as creative as 5 year olds!

Truly creative people have no box! No "outside of the box" - they see no box!

Creative class is the new middle class.

Traditionally useless people have become useful - Honey Boo-Boo, Kim Kardashian.  "Celebrity for nothing." Nothingness is now something. We consume different services and products made by people. Daniel Pink: We used to live of necessity and now we live in age of abundance. iPhone is not a necessity. We consume nothingness. 

Personalized consumption.

USA new economy driven by IT Industry which has nothing to do with necessity. Noncognitive skills are the important skills. These are not part of the CCSS and sausage-making process.

Entrepreneurship. We need job-creators, not job seekers.  Business, Social, Intrapreneurs, Policy entrepreneurs. 

Side Effects:

Time is constant - time on one thing cannot be spent on something else.

Some skills do not work with each other - Standardized tests test skill to find answers quickly but not how to ask questions.

Enhance student strengths instead of fixing their weaknesses.