Weekly Buzz

What's buzzing at Franklin in tech this week

Classroom Spotlight

PETE&C 2014

Franklin Area School District represented the 10th Annual PETE&C (Pennsylvania Educational Technology Expo and Conference) well this year while it was held at the Hershey Lodge in Hershey, PA. Several district administrators and teachers attended the conference from Sunday the 9th to Wednesday the 12th. Ann Black was also a volunteer for the conference ensuring everything went off smoothy. Bravo, Ann and thank you! The latest and greatest trends in tech were shared by fellow educators and vendors who presented on topics ranging from the Flipped Classroom model, interactive SmartBoard use, iPads integrated into instruction and web tools. We learned a lot at this exceptional conference. Future editions of this newsletter will highlight teachers putting what they learned at the conference to use.

Birds of a Feather

At PETE&C each year, networking rooms called "Birds of a Feather" are available and open for educators to collaborate with one another about the same topic of interest. This year, Franklin's teachers in attendance spent Monday evening of the conference in one of those rooms to collaborate on flipping classroom instruction. Interested in finding out more? We are meeting on Wednesday, April 2 at the middle school after student dismissal. All are welcome! If you are interested in attending, RSVP below.

What is Flipped Learning?

"Flipping" the classroom is getting a lot of lip service right now at conferences, online and in schools. But what is it? The Flipped Learning Network, pioneered by original flipped educators Aaron Sams and Jon Bergman, has been hesitant to define it over the years because "flipping" your instruction will look different in each classroom. This lack of one specified definition may have caused more harm than good. As teachers at Franklin get excited about shifting their instruction in this direction, it is important to have a basic point of reference to return to regardless of the level or department that we teach in. The definition from the Flipped Learning Network site is now this: " Flipped learning occurs when direct instruction is moved from the group teaching space to the individual learning environment." Next question - what does class time look like? The Flipped Learning Network says: " Class time is then used for active problem solving by students and one-to-one or small group interactions with the teacher. Students can watch the short lessons as many times as they wish to grasp the content and come to class ready to jump into the lesson, answer questions, work on collaborative projects and explore the content further." The benefits of this shift in instruction are huge. If this shift is something that you are interested in, I strongly encourage you to attend the first meeting being held on Wednesday, April 2 at the middle school after student dismissal. Please use the space right below to RSVP.

Flip Your Instruction - Make It Happen

Wednesday, April 2nd, 3:30pm

246 Pone Ln

Franklin, PA

This will be the first meeting of Franklin's pioneer flipping instruction group. Meeting will be held at the middle school immediately following student dismissal.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

"Scratching" to Try New Things

Gifted teacher, Jim Ivell came back to school Thursday and jumped right into applying some new things that he learned. Jim, along with math coach, Ashley Staples, attended several coding sessions at PETE&C. One of those sessions covered the site Scratch and the learning opportunities available through it. His students at Sandycreek enjoyed the opportunity to code on Thursday upon his arrival back to school!

Classroom Collaboration

If you have an activity planned, would like assistance with one, or would like some ideas, please feel free to contact me using the Tech Training Form, emailing me at zacherle@fasd.k12.pa.us or calling me at 432-2121 ext. 142. I would love to hear from you!

Looking Ahead

Check for updates each week so that you don't miss out!

CCSS Resources

PD Pad

There are so many great resources out there, it is difficult to narrow it down to three each week. In a way to get you as many resources as possible, I have created a website to send new resources to daily. If you would like to receive these new resources to support your needs in the classroom, please go to the the site and sign up for updates to be sent directly to your email. You will only receive a daily email if I bookmark a new resource. No new resource, no email for you. I highly recommend that you sign up to receive the latest and greatest resources! Visit the PD Pad and sign up today!


Twitter Chat of the Month

Participating in Twitter chats is a great way to build up your PLN (Professional Learning Network). Create an account and start building! The chat I am highlighting this month can be found under #edtchat . On Tuesday nights teachers and administrators gather for #edchat at 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. This chat lasts until 8 p.m. This particular chat was founded by retired educator Tom Whitby and is moderated by Jerry Blumengarten. Even if you do not participate in the chat itself, I highly encourage you to follow them on Twitter simply due to the wealth of knowledge that they share all day. At the time and date, go to Twitter and search for #edchat. A topic announced at the beginning of the hour guides all participating. The fun part, though, is developing virtual friendships with folks from all over the globe.

Ms. Zacherl proudly supports the Franklin Area School District Knights with teacher tips and resources.