Showing posts from March, 2010

Google Us! Evanston: Reflections from the Google RFI

Well, the 3,000 stickers have been passed out, hundreds of flyers were pinned to the walls, and banners, videos, and PA announcements have combined to show our school's support for the city's bid for Google Fiber.  I attended the press conference earlier today, and was extremely proud of our school's efforts along with those of all of the city's partners.  This was my first real experience interacting with city officials, and as the mayor stated in her remarks, it was a sight to see all of us gathered together, unified in support of this initiative.  I would truly love to see us have the opportunity to rally once again in the near future.  Google us!
Below is our video submission.  Thanks to all of the faculty and staff who participated.  Also, William Jenkins deserves much of the praise in putting this fine piece together.  For the rest of Evanston's videos, please click here.  

Google RFI for Evanston

For a few days, I've been working with Mr. Jenkins on gathering video footage for our contribution to Evanston's bid for Google's RFI for Fiber for Communities. After listening to several teachers comment on how classrooms would be affected if ultra-high speed internet connections (1Gb/s) made their way to ETHS, I was reminded of an earlier post on why I love my job based on Daniel Pink's TED talk.  When filming my segment later today, I will emphasize the following points:

Given ultra-high speed internet in the classrooms, labs, and community, students will be able to access information and advance their education on their own pace and schedule.  No longer will class hours and the school year be from 8-4pm and from late August to early June.  Learning can be 24/7, 365, and this ties well to findings that the current generation of learners tend to perform better in later hours.

With the Internet as the neverending resource of information, students now ha…

Click It to Check It: Review of Turning Technologies and eInstruction Response systems (Clickers)

This past week, I've been in the classrooms working with Test Prep teachers and using new sets of "Clickers" that we ordered from Turning Technologies.  We've had about 20 sets of clickers from eInstruction in the school for over a year now, but I experienced some sluggish performance from these sets when I was using them in Chemistry last year.  More on that to come as I recently met with our eInstruction reseller after talking with him at ICE a few weeks ago. 

Turning Point AnyWhere and Test Prep

Out of the box, I've been very impressed wtih how easy it has been to train teachers on how to use the Turning Point AnyWhere software and the accompanying response cards (clickers).  It has literally been plug and play (that's how it should be for every device/software, right?) as teachers simply need to plug in a USB dongle and open Turning Point AnyWhere, and voila, they are ready to start polling their classes.  With Test Prep teachers, we have used this featur…

Melting ICE - My poster session and final reflections

Day 3 (for me) marked my debut in the conference arena as a presenter. As soon as I finished setting up my widescreen display and laptops, I found 12 people crowded around in a half circle by my table. So, off I went and as I walked through my Prezi and described our Google Apps deployment process at ETHS. A few large groups and many individuals later, I survived my first poster session and honestly loved every minute. I can see why some presenters enjoy posters more as I was able to connect with individuals much like how I enjoy connecting with students one-on-one in the classroom. It was great to hear what other schools were doing, and I was able to offer some advice to those schools just starting their experience with Google Apps. One potential collaboration involves working with some faculty members at Zion Benton High School in developing both curriculum materials and a course for training teachers on how to use Google Apps as well as assessments for the skills learned in s…