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#IAedchat LIVE

I had the privilege of being the guest for #IAedchat LIVE last night. Here is the video if you missed it. The conversation really gets started around 2:50. Happy viewing!

Tonight! A chat with Steve Hargadon about school leadership in the 21st century [WEBINAR]

Steve Hargadon and I are chatting tonight about school leadership in the 21st century. I hope that you’ll join us, share your thoughts, and ask some really tough questions.

If you’re not subscribed to Steve’s Future of Education webinar series, you should be!

Book review – Teaching with wikis, blogs, podcasts, & more

My goal for June: 30 days, 30 book reviews. Today’s book is Teaching With Wikis, Blogs, Podcasts, & More: Dozens of Easy Ideas for Using Technology to Get Kids Excited About Learning, by Kathleen Fitzgibbon. My short recommendation? Stay away from this book.

What I liked about the book

TeachingwithwikisThe only redeeming aspect of this book is that the author gives some ideas for classroom lessons and projects that may be useful for educators who are new to social media.

What I didn’t like about the book

There’s not much in this book. It’s only 48 pages long and is intended for grades 3 and higher. We bought this book thinking that it would be an interesting end-of-year gift for our son’s 4th-grade teacher. When it arrived from Amazon and we saw what it was, we gave her Will Richardson’s book, Blogs, Wikis, Podcats, and Other Powerful Tools for Classrooms, instead.

The back cover of the book says “This book of quick tips and practical ideas shows how to fuse technology with everyday teaching. Readers will learn ways to use presentation software, e-portfolios, digital cameras, interactive whiteboards, and other teacher-tested tools to enhance learning and motivate students.” What you get, however, is simplistic and fairly unhelpful.

Key quotes

Here are a couple of examples of what’s in the book…

Have students go online and find a free software tool for creating blogs. They name their blogs and create a blog address or URL. Encourage students to make the title catchy. Have students choose a template, a tool that creates the page where they write and categorizes content. Have students write their first blog posting. (p. 16)

That’s it. That’s the kind of advice you get for setting up your students’ blogs. If you can navigate these instructions successfully, you don’t need the book in the first place because you already know enough about blogs to make this happen.

Here’s another one…

Publish the podcast. Go to any free online server that provides a server for uploading audio files. (p. 32)

Again, I’m thinking that any educator that can do this successfully with the given instructions has no need for the book. The book is full of stuff like this.

Rating

I give this book 1 highlighter (out of a possible 5). I was tempted to give it 0, but there are some redeeming ideas for future lessons scattered throughout the book. As far as I can tell, there isn’t much other reason for anyone to buy this book. Whatever’s in here can be better found on web sites and blogs.

highlighter1 

[See my other reviews and recommended reading]

Video – The Digital Education Revolution in NSW

The New South Wales province in Australia is on a quest to outfit every Year 9 to 12 student with a customized Lenovo netbook by 2012. It is expected that over 200,000 computers will be distributed to students and teachers. If you’re interested, you can read more about the project or listen to a podcast about the initiative. 

I think this is a GREAT idea. Guess which high school graduates will be better prepared for a digital world: those who get to use computers in interesting and empowering ways on a regular basis or those who don’t?

Below is the publicity video for the initiative (thanks, John Strange, for leading me to this). Happy viewing, everyone!

New podcast channel – UCEA Interview Series

The University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA) has started a new podcast channel and will be interviewing top educational leadership scholars from around the world about school administrator research and/or preparation.

The first live podcast will occur tomorrow and will feature Dr. Karen Seashore, who holds the Rodney Wallace Professorship for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning at the University of Minnesota. Karen will be discussing the linkages between P-12 school leadership and student academic learning outcomes. As a former faculty colleague of Karen’s, I know her well and anticipate that this will be a great conversation.

We here at CASTLE have been working with UCEA to get this up and running. CASTLE is one of several UCEA centers; I also serve as UCEA’s Associate Director of Communications. Stay tuned to the podcast channel to hear future interviews and, while you’re at it, sign up for UCEA’s Twitter feed if you’re interested in more school leadership resources.

Happy listening!

4 Guys Talking – Episode 6 (Chuck Heinlein)

If you’d like to know what a good statewide 21st century school leadership development program looks like, have we got a podcast for you!

This morning we had Episode 6 of 4 Guys Talking, the ‘talk radio’ podcast series from CASTLE. We spent the first 40 minutes talking with Chuck Heinlein, Director of the Leadership Center for 21st Century Schools at the West Virginia Department of Education.

I think this was one of our best podcasts to date. Chuck shared a wealth of information about the statewide principal institutes that he’s running, and we learned a ton about the legislative supports, Department of Education commitments, funding and policy mechanisms, and other supports that are in place in the state. I have the sense that West Virginia really is trying very hard to move its schools (and its school leaders) forward in a thoughtful, progressive, sustainable manner.

You can download the podcast or listen to a Web-streamed version here:

You also can subscribe to the 4 Guys Talking feed using iTunes or a RSS reader.

Thanks to those of you who joined us live. I’m not sure when our next episodes will be but I will blog about them when I know. Happy listening!

Update: I deleted the embedded BlogTalkRadio player that used to be in this post. Since it started playing automatically, I thought it was too annoying!

4 Guys Talking – May 26 guest, Chuck Heinlein

Chuck Heinlein, Director of the Leadership Center for 21st Century Schools at the West Virginia Department of Education, will be our guest tomorrow on the 4 Guys Talking podcast. Chuck has an incredible job. Over the past few years he has run hundreds of administrators in his state through year-long institutes on 21st century schooling. As far as I can tell, West Virginia is far ahead of other states when it comes to investing in a statewide model for 21st century leadership development.

You can join us and Chuck on May 26, 1pm Central, for the live podcast. Feel free to call in and join the conversation yourself and/or help us brainstorm some questions for Chuck beforehand. The podcast also will be available for download afterward. Thanks!

Top 10 K12 Online 2008 podcasts for busy school administrators

Here are my top 10 2008 K12 Online Conference podcasts for busy principals and superintendents (in no particular order). These are the K12 Online presentations that I think are most likely to interest, educate, and entertain administrators as well as make them think!

  1. There’s something going on here you need to know about… (Dennis Richards)
  2. Current leadership models are inadequate for disruptive innovations (Scott McLeod)
  3. The voices of School 2.0: School reform as described by the words and images of the people of the Science Leadership Academy (Chris Lehmann)
  4. I like Delicious things: An introduction to tagging and folksonomies (Chris Betcher)
  5. Telling the new story: Leverage points for inspiring change orientation (David Warlick)
  6. Oh the possibilities (Lisa Parisi)
  7. Games in education (Sylvia Martinez)
  8. Facilitating technology integration: A synthesis of the research (Jon Becker)
  9. “What did you do in school yesterday, today, and three years ago?” (H Songhai)
  10. Parental engagement in the 21st century: Leveraging Web 2.0 tools to engage parents in non-traditional ways (Lorna Constantini & Matt Montagne)

Load these onto an iPod, hand it to a busy school administrator, and say, “Here are some presentations that I think you’ll enjoy while you’re exercising or driving around. After you’ve listened to a few, let me know what you think!”

Yesterday

See also

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Top 20 TED Talks podcasts for busy school administrators

Here are my top 20 TED Talks podcasts for busy principals and superintendents (in no particular order). These are the TED presentations that I think are most likely to interest, educate, and entertain administrators as well as make them think!

  1. Kevin Kelly on the next 5,000 days of the web
  2. Barry Schwartz on our loss of wisdom
  3. Brewster Kahle builds a free digital library
  4. Jonathan Drori on what we think we know
  5. Mae Jemison on teaching arts and sciences together
  6. Patti Maes demos the Sixth Sense
  7. Clay Shirky on institutions vs. collaboration
  8. Ken Robinson says schools kill creativity
  9. David Perry on videogames
  10. Stuart Brown says play is more than fun
  11. Sugata Mitra shows how kids teach themselves
  12. Charles Leadbeater on innovation
  13. Michael Merzenich on re-wiring the brain
  14. Dave Eggers’ wish: Once upon a school
  15. Ray Kurzweil on how technology will transform us
  16. Alan Kay shares a powerful idea about ideas
  17. Howard Rheingold on collaboration
  18. Erin McKean redefines the dictionary
  19. Richard Baraniuk on open-source learning
  20. Ann Cooper talks school lunches

Load these onto an iPod, hand it to a busy school administrator, and say, “Here are some presentations that I think you’ll enjoy while you’re exercising or driving around. After you’ve listened to a few, let me know what you think!”

Stay tuned

See also

Related posts

4 Guys Talking – Episode 5 (Lane Mills)

This morning we had Episode 5 of 4 Guys Talking, the new ‘talk radio’ podcast series from CASTLE. We spent almost the entire time talking about university educational leadership preparation programs.

Our first 40 minutes was spent with Dr. Lane Mills, Associate Professor at East Carolina University (ECU) and board member for the journal,Innovate. Among other things, Lane talked about being the ‘lone wolf’ faculty member when it came to trying to prepare his program’s graduates (future school administrators) for the demands of the digital, global age. Lane essentially said that

Making change in higher education is like pushing a rope.

We continued to talk about the difficulty of getting our faculty peers on board ideologically and, even when they are, also getting them the training and knowledge that they need but currently lack. There’s little support for faculty even when they do want to move in this direction.

After Lane left us, we continued to talk about the struggles that educational leadership programs face as they work to prepare appropriately-empowered graduates. One issue that we started to discuss – and probably should spend some more time on in a later podcast – is the desirability of having certain technology and/or leadership expectations for admission of our incoming students (who are typically teachers or principals) and/or explicitly-stated desired outcomes for our graduates regarding technology leadership.

Jen Hegna challenged us right at the end, stating:

What can k-12 schools do while higher ed is trying to figure [out] their leadership programs? It is hard for us to wait…we need change now!

She’s got us dead to rights, I’m afraid. Other than for her to keep plugging away on her end, I don’t have any great answers right now for her concern. It’s going to take a while for those of us in academe to get our act together (if ever we will).

You can download the podcast or listen to a Web-streamed version here:

You also can subscribe to the 4 Guys Talking feed using iTunes or a RSS reader.

Thanks to those of you who joined us live. Our next show will be on May 26, 1pm to 2pm Central. We’ll be talking with Dr. Chuck Heinlein, Director of the West Virginia Institute for 21st Century Leadership, which is sponsored by the West Virginia Department of Education.

[I'm still reworking CASTLE Conversations, the old CASTLE podcast channel, which will include all previous and podcasts (including 4 Guys Talking). I'll post about it when it's ready (probably not until later this summer).]

Happy listening!

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