MACUL SIGPL Newsletter

2018 September Issue

Education Twitter Chats: Grow and Learn from Your PLN

“A Personal Learning Network is a way of describing the group of people that you connect with to learn their ideas, their questions, their reflections, and their references. Your PLN is not limited to online interactions, but it is that online, global interactive part that really makes it special. It is personal because you choose who’s part of that group; you choose if you want to lurk–just check out what people are saying–or if you share; because you choose when to do so, and how to do so.” ~ Marc-André Lalande

One way to learn from your PLN is to participate in a Twitter chat. If you want to learn about what education Twitter chats are available for you to join, check out this great resource Education Chats filled with resources and a calendar of chats to keep you learning and growing.

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Spotlight on Speakers: Janice Kato

Janice Kato enjoys Google so much that she can be found chatting with strangers in the airport about the amazing tools Google has to offer. As a classroom teacher when Google classroom first debuted, she was approached by her technology coach at the time to "try out" this new Google tool. FromGoogle Classroom's first public iteration to it's most current face lift, Janice continues to be an expert in using Google classroom with students, teachers, and administration in innovative ways.

Check out her MACUL SIGPL Workshop, Using Google Classroom as a PD Launchpad.

2018 Summer Book Study Recap: Intentional Interruption

Thank you to those who read Intentional Interruption by Steven Katz and Lisa Ain Dack and participated in our Twitter Slow Chat during the month of July. MACUL SIGPL provided free copies of this awesome book to the first 50 SIGPL members who registered for our study. During the Twitter Chat, it was inspiring to have the collective wisdom of our members share their stories of quality professional learning, resources, and tools.

Cultivating Curiosity

The annual Michigan Association for Computer Users in Learning (MACUL) Conference is March 20-22, 2019 at the Cobo Center in Detroit, MI.

It is one of the Midwest’s largest educational technology conferences with 5000+ educators from across Michigan, the region, and Canada.

The first day offers in-depth, focused workshops with the following two days of conference featuring 300+ sessions.

The MACUL conference gives attendees an opportunity to explore new tools, discover the latest trends, gain valuable resources and network with like-minded educators.


Full Day Workshop

Project Based Professional Learning (PBPL): Igniting Inquiry and Curiosity in Adult Learners with PBL and Technology Integration

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

In a PBL environment, students collaborate to complete long-term, interdisciplinary projects that require content knowledge, creativity, innovation, critical thinking, and communication skills. So, why not take the next step and transform the learning for adults?

By bringing a PBL lens and technology integration together, professional learning facilitators can guide adult learners to similar outcomes. Modeling a PBL environment during staff development gives educators firsthand experience with the process of planning, working in a collaborative group with peers, and learning in a project-based setting. Through a synthesis of direct instruction, group work, videos, and hands-on experiences, participants will learn more about project based learning and engaging learners in sustained inquiry, the importance of meaningful technology integration in facilitation and professional learning roles; and
designing professional learning that ignites inquiry and curiosity in their adult learners.


  • Myla Lee, Instructional Coach and PBL Specialist, Novi Community Schools
  • Rich Dixon, Director of Online Learning, Buck Institute for Education, and
  • Mary Wever, STEAM and Technology Educator, Waverly Schools

Half Day Workshops

Using Google Classroom as a PD Launchpad

8:30 am - 12:00 pm

Google Classroom isn’t just for the classroom teacher and flipping goes beyond the classroom. Whether you are a presenter, administrator, coach, or leader of any group, Google Classroom is an effective tool you can use tomorrow. In this session you will, dive deep and explore numerous ways to use Google Classroom with adult learners.


  • Janice Kato, Instructional Technology Specialist, Saginaw ISD, Google for Education Certified Trainer
  • Matthew McCullough, Director of Innovation in Teaching and Learning at Schoolcraft Community Schools

Designing or Renovating your Makerspace

1:00 PM – 4:30 PM

This hands-on workshop will be led by Nicholas Provenzano, Makerspace Director at University Liggett School in Grosse Point Woods and Angela Loewecke, Interior Designer with Demco. If you are looking to create a Makerspace or update an existing space within the next 12-18 months, this pre-conference session is for you. Nicholas and Angela will provide an overview of the renovation of the University Liggett School Makerspace that opened in the fall of 2018. The latter half of this pre-conference will provide an opportunity for you to begin working through your Makerspace project plans with guidance from Nicholas and Angela. You will leave this pre-conference session with a plan on how to tackle your Makerspace project.


  • DEMCO interior design team, and
  • Nicholas Provenzano, Makerspace Director University Liggett School


SIG Professional Learning supports educators involved in providing professional learning opportunities in the effective use of technology in teaching and learning.

Director: Kellie DeLosSantos, Jackson County ISD, @mrsdls

Communications Officer : Myla Lee, Novi Community School District, @MyTLee3

Operations Officer: Justin Cowen, Breitung Township School District, @cowen_rocks