#BRESA Tech Tips
March is in full swing with spring break just around the corner! Several schools are in the midst of reading month activities, and John and Amy are looking forward to sharing in that fun by providing reading-focused maker days in several schools. If we missed you for reading month, we would love to collaborate with you in April or May. We have a few new STEM resources available for checkout, including Sphero Bolts and Sphero Indis, as well as a box of Legos that can be used for any creations you imagine. For all #BRESA educators headed to the MACUL conference this week, we look forward to seeing you there, and for those not attending, be sure to follow #MACUL23 to pick up some great resources. Look for our next newsletter to come out in mid-April. We wish you a restful and fun spring break!
Planning for Earth Day 2023
Earth Day 2023 is April 22, 2023. To make things a bit easier for you, we have curated some resources for you below that you may find helpful.
- The Environmental Protection Agency has published a great website with lesson plans and resources that are free to use. Check it out!
- National Geographic has a quick lesson that can be used with your students. It is targeted to 3-5 but it could be used in middle school as well.
- PBS Learning Media has a series of activities and short video clips that can enhance your lessons. These are targeted to all grade levels.
SWMI Esports Spring Season Updates
Spring Finals are Just Around the Corner! - April 15th
In Valorant, Buchanan and Hartford are tied at the top of the leader board. There are just a few more weeks of the season left so who will take the coveted one seed to Lake Michigan College is up in the air!
Be sure to come support these athletes as they will play on April 15, 2023 beginning at 8:30 a.m. The event is free and open to the public. We also will be having walk up Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros tournaments. Come out and have some fun!
Berrien EdTech Innovators Cohort
Congratulations to the first Berrien Ed Tech Innovators Cohort who recently completed a series of collaborative workshops focused on the innovation in the classroom. Meeting monthly, educators from districts around the county met to discuss and learn from one another. Some of the activities included hands-on exploration of the Maker/STEM resources available at Berrien RESA, a trip to the LMC Fab Lab, a journey to the Henry Ford Museum, and a virtual visit with Dr. Liz Kolb author of Learning First, Technology Second.
Information regarding our next cohort will be coming soon. Stay tuned in future newsletters and reach out to the educators in your district who participated in our first cohort; we are sure they would love to share their experience with you!
Berrien Ed Tech Innovators Cohort 1: Tyler Cantrell, Josh Fairbanks, Melissa Foster, Abilyn Janke, Erin Kratky, Lori Kuntz, Monica Luke, Keith McLaughlin, James Moray, Tami Nelson, Nicole Rimes, Megan Roth, Emily Zablocki-Kohler.
Chat GPT: Prompt Engineering & Information Literacy
ChatGPT continues to be a hotly debated topic in education. As we shared last month, there are numerous resources being created to help educators better understand AI and how it can be used effectively in the classroom. One idea that keeps bubbling to the top of the Chat GPT conversation is that of prompt engineering. In simple terms, prompt engineering is the process by which one creates the query (or prompt) for ChatGPT to generate a response. Obviously, the better the prompt, the better the response. Thus, if we embrace Chat GPT in education, how can we become better prompt engineers and help our students do the same? But, the teaching and learning should not stop there. The real learning takes place when students evaluate the information generated. Consider then, how can ChatGPT be used to teach inquiry AND information literacy skills? The resources below may be helpful as educators continue to wrestle with the use of AI in classrooms.
Education as an Incubator for Innovation by Ken Shelton
ChatGPT, Chatbots, and AI in Education by Matt Miller
ChatGPT in Schools: What You Need to Know Podcast by Matt Miller and Holly Clark
60+ Must-Try Chat GPT Prompts for Teachers by Monica Burns @ClassTechTips
AI Virtual Room by Sarah Wood @myedtechworld
Innovative Teaching Techniques with ChatGPT by Dr. Bruce Ellis TCEA Presentation
March Tech Tools and Resources
Calling All School Library/Media Specialists and Staff
In anticipation of School Library Month, we would like to connect with area school library personnel (teacher-librarians, media specialists, library/media aides, library/media paraprofessionals) to honor and support these positions. If you serve in this capacity (or can provide contact information for others) please complete this short form. More information will be coming in April. We look forward to building this list--please share!
Professional Learning Opportunities
Coding and Data Science
The MiSTEM Network has several summer PD opportunities for teachers interested in learning more about computer and data science. Scholarships are available, and educators who have attended in the past rave about the content learned and connections made.
The 2023 MACUL Conference will be held this week at Huntington Place in Detroit. John and Amy, as well as several other #BRESA educators will be attending. Join us as we Unbox Education and follow along using #MACUL23
If you are unable to make the in-person conference, check out the Virtual Track option. There is still time to register, and recordings will be available until June 2nd.
Visit the Professional Learning page on the REMC website to see all of the offerings. April courses begin April 10.
New STEM Resources Available for Check-Out
The Technology Services Department at Berrien RESA has a variety of STEM resources, equipment and materials you can check out for use in your classroom.
NEW ITEMS ADDED:
- Math/Tech Kits for Algebra Performance Tasks
- Lego Box
- Sphero Indi Education Robot Class Pack
- Sphero Bolt Power Pack
Visit our REMC Resource Webpage to learn more about the items that are available. To check out a resource, please complete the resource checkout form.
We have lesson plans to share if you aren't sure where to begin. We would love to come and help you do an activity with your students or staff. Email John or Amy to set up a time.
How can we help?
We would love to hear your suggestions on how we can best support you. Please complete this form if you have some ideas regarding content you would like to see in our newsletter or specific needs in your district. Also, please feel free to share this newsletter with others and if you are interested in subscribing, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line "Tech Tips". Finally, as always, feel free to contact John Phillips or Amy Dirlam directly for all of your educational technology needs.
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