I started a blog for my system technology committee where all the members are authors and can propose and discuss options for our next five-year tech plan which is due at the end of the year. During the last meeting, we discussed a need to bat around ideas without holding more meetings. At first we thought about having setting up a conversation on the school email, but the committee was pretty paranoid about that.
I wish we could be more open. It would be so cool to let the public (i.e. people who know about ed/tech) comment and contribute. Then, when the plan was done, it could possibly assist other schools who are going through the same process. The threat of parent and high-up administration peeking into the process wins out, however, and we now have a very password protected, private blog. I just hope everyone can figure out how to use it.
Here are some of the things on the table so far:
1. A one-to-one computer initiative a la Maine. Now we just have to figure out what one-to-one means--laptops, labs, palms, etc.
2. Email for the kiddies. I didn't know my kids didn't have school email addresses until we were all in the lab setting up new blogs. When we got to the part where they needed to enter their email addresses, they said things like, "Ms. H, I don't have an email" and I replied, "Wha?!" I directed them to Yahoo and Hotmail to set up free emails, but I felt icky doing that. I'd much rather them have the somewhat protection of school email. It did, however, allow me to teach an important lesson about those awful pop-up ads promising wins of $100 to $1,000,000.00. For example:
"No Little Jimmy, don't click on that box. You didn't really win any money. They're trying to scam you."
"Really? Oh," Little Jimmy says in a sad, puppy-dog-like voice, his body slouching down in his chair, the dream gone.
3. Happy-happy-joy-joy-toys like Smart boards and remote-control answering devices
While collecting some links for the new tech blog, I may have found an answer to my extra-curricular troubles. See, I want to do something club-like, but everything I would initially gravitate towards is already taken--creative writing, lit mag, book club (I will be helping), journalism, video production. The Best Practices section of Will Richardson's blog led me to The Beacon School's website. They have a web-cast radio station. I could totally be into that!
Or, my hears--er, ears--are too big for my brain, I've lost at least ten pounds in snot weight, and the Thera-Flu is setting in. Let's all take a moment to remember I am a first-year teacher, and I don't even know what I'm teaching tomorrow yet.