Connected Learning Summit Slides & Resources

We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to share some of the projects we’ve developed to bring connected learning to the Mendon-Upton Regional School District. The slides from our session are posted below and we also wanted to share some resources from our live presentation.

You can learn more about the Inspired Learning Project and the Inspired Learning Convention by clicking here. We’ve also created this simple guide to executing your first high-altitude balloon launch. The full Colorcycle PSA is available on YouTube. We’re also happy to work through the logistics with you to bring any of our projects to your school, district or organization. Feel free to reach out.

That’s Horse S#!T: Connected Learning Through Compost, Weather Balloons & Other Projects from Dave Quinn

 

CLS 2018 Slides

MassCUE18

School Doesn’t Have to Stink

The title of this session has multiple meanings It’s first an allusion to the Raspberry Pi-powered equine composting system that is highlighted the beginning of this presentation. The second and more important point is that despite evidence that suggests that students become increasingly disengaged as they progress through school, we can and must find ways to reverse this trend.

Throughout the year, we have opportunities to provide inspiring learning experiences for our students. Many are made possible through the intentional use of technology. In the Mendon-Upton Regional School District, we strive to design projects that leverage digital tools to enhance communication, collaboration, and innovation so that the student’s work is both personally meaningful and has value outside of school. This presentation outlines some of our endeavors from the 2017-18 school year. The goals of this session are to show what is possible in public schools, offer an invitation to learn from and with us, and to start a conversation so we can learn from you.

Pedagogical Frameworks

Personally, my education philosophy and practice are rooted in two frameworks. The first is Connected Learning which is an approach to education that focuses on the intersection of student interests, positive peer & mentor relationships and opportunities to extend learning to out-of-school, career, and civic contexts.

Scott McLeod’s 4 Shifts protocol is another framework helps me to think about learning design with teachers. The protocol provides a series of reflection questions that help educators to think about their lessons through the lens of deeper learning, authentic work, student agency, and purposeful technology integration. Together, they help to merge the why & the how of shrinking the engagement gap.

Resources

In addition to the slides, there are a series of other resources that can help you revise these projects and implement them in your contexts. Our MURSD Weather Balloon Project Overview is a short guide to share the tools, resources, and processes that we used to launch our weather balloons for the last two years. We did not include the Raspberry Pi aspects in the guide, but please reach out with any additional questions.

We also wanted to share an Introduction to Node-Red & Raspberry Pi which provides the building blocks that we used to think up irrigation set up. This water pump, the Dig Drip Irrigation System and a Power Switch Tail and a water source would be all you need to get started. Finally, this Hummingbird Robotics & Building Your First Bot tutorial was the basis for our children’s book robots. Your students’ creativity will take it from there.

We also invite you to learn alongside us in MURSD.  The Inspired Learning Project posts regular blogs and hosts monthly discussions with educators from across New England centered on improving the student experience.  The Inspired Learning Convention brings us all together to share practices that engage teachers and students in real work that matters. We hope you can join us on March 8th, 2019 for this event. Additionally, Nipmuc Regional High School hosts tours and PD sessions on its 21st Century Learning Conferences, a bi-annual event when we suspend the bell schedule for student & teacher created seminars and hands-on learning experiences that originate out of the interests of the school community.

If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter or by email

Slides

 

School Doesn't Have to Stink from Dave Quinn

ETT 2018

Personal Digital Inquiry

&

Creating to Learn

Thank you for joining me for the Personal Digital Inquiry Session (PDI) at the Ed Tech Teacher Summit. On this blog post, you will find the slides from my session directly below. Additionally, this is our landing site for our PDI mini-experience which you will find further down the page

I wanted to provide links to the PDI planning guide as well as the Creative Brief tool to help you structure your PDI process when you return back to school. The brainstorming PDI brainstorming sheet can be found here. I’ve also included a full PDI Planning Template along with completed template with a larger 203o project can be found

This is the link to the Creative Brief.

While we won’t use these structures today, I thought you might find them to be useful.

PDI Session Slides

Note: There are about a dozen resources with links at the end of the slide deck to help support the PDI process. I’m happy to discuss any of the tools on Tuesday afternoon, Wednesday or by email dquinn@mursd.org 

PDI: UN Sustainable Development Goals

PDI Mini-Project

Wonder & Discover:

After watching the introductory video, explore the links below. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is the suggested starting point but read them in any order that you like and see fit. Consider the following questions as well as your own as you read. Don’t feel limited to using just these sites or these questions. Feel free to search for other sites for information as you see fit.

  • What goal do you find to be most personally meaningful?
  • What questions arose as you perused the site?
  • What do you know now that you didn’t know prior?
  • What action steps are most personally feasible?
  • What lingering questions do you have & where might a learner go from here?

Resource Links


Collaborate & Discuss:

After wondering and learning about your Sustainable Development Goal, jot down some notes on the and key takeaways on the Padlet. Find a partner and share your what you’ve learned. Where do you find there to be overlap? What’s dissimilar?

Collaborate & Discuss Padlet


Create & Participate

You’ve wondered, you’ve discussed, and now it’s time to make! With your partner, choose whether you’d like to create a simple web page or a no-frills, interview-style microcast to share your learning. If you’d like to create a web page, visit the Adobe Spark Page portion of this section. If you’d like to create a podcast skip down the Sound Cloud section.

Your page or podcast can focus on whatever is personally meaningful for you. If you’re a little stuck, consider using some of the following prompts:

  • Why did you choose your particular focus goal?
  • What questions arose as you perused SDG the site?
  • What do you know now about this world challenge that you didn’t know prior?
  • What action steps toward achieving the goal are most personally feasible?
  • What lingering questions do you have & where might a learner go from here?

Option 1: Adobe Spark Pages

Click the above link and use the login credentials found below this section. Once logged in, scroll down the bottom of the page & select the web page option to open a new Adobe Spark Page.

You once on the page can use the existing theme or change it by clicking in the top right corner.  Use this digital space to create a multimedia site that shares an overview of your learning from the day. Links, images & videos are appreciated.

A quick video tutorial can be found here.

Login: pdi@eduquinn.com

PW: Ett2018!

Option 2: SoundCloud Microcast

If audio is more your speed, feel free to take the light micro “podcast” approach and record an interview-style conversation between you and your partner centered Sustainable Development Goals. The interview can take any form you two chose. If you’re looking for some interview questions/topics consider:

  1. What goal do you find to be most personally meaningful?
  2. What questions arose as you perused the site?
  3. What do you know now that you didn’t know prior?
  4. What action steps are most personally feasible?
  5. What lingering questions do you have & where might a learner go from here?

Make it your own!

You can record on almost any device. If you have an iPhone / Andriod, I’d recommend Voice Record Pro app for recording. Opinion Podcast app works for iOS, too. Both can export directly to SoundCloud. You can also record your interview on your Mac using the QuickTime Player. All devices can use the Voice Recorder  on 123apps to record your interview and then download the audio.

Once you’re done recording, submit your recording to SoundCloud through the app or through the web. The login credentials can be found below. Give your track a title, preferably with your name in it & add a picture of yourselves/goals to help provide a little context.

Click Save and head back to the stream to collect the direct link to your recording. You’ll need it for the final phase.

Login: pdi@eduquinn.com

PW: ETT2018


Analyze & Reflect

Visit the PDI Posting & Reflection Site. Click on the “Share” Link at the top of the page which should take you to your form. In the first box, past the link to your SoundCloud recording or Adobe Spark Page.

Give your post a title, ideally with your first name in it. Please respond to 1-2 of the prompts in the Reflection section:

  1. How did it feel trying to generate questions around your goal?
  2. How might PDI fit in your classroom practice?
  3. If you had additional time, how would you improve your product?
  4. How could action toward the UN’s 2030 Sustainability Goals fit into your classroom?
  5. What other tools could be used to Create to Learn?

Respond to the other items on the form as you see fit and click submit. If time allows, check out the work from your fellow participants and give them some feedback.


via GIPHY

 

2019 MURSD Winter Design Challenge

“GO MAKE IT BETTER,” I shouted to the small group of 2nd graders in front of me. I watched as they giggled and scampered off with their design. I used my “cafeteria voice” mostly to convey enthusiasm and create a sense of urgency as the large countdown clock was down to 9 minutes. Also, because it’s incredibly loud when almost 200 elementary students are in one single space.

The week before winter break was Design Challenge Week in the Mendon-Upton Regional School District. More than 1500 students (300 teams!) from Kindergarten through Grade 12 worked collaboratively to design, model and test a wind/Big Bad Wolf-proof home for Wilbur, the 4th Little Pig. The models were made from popsicle sticks, straws, index cards, and tape. Some students got creative and used the paper bag that was used to hold the materials. The houses were tested using an industrial floor fan.

At the elementary and high school levels, we opted to have student across grade levels participate in a gym/cafeteria. This created both an electric atmosphere and the opportunity to have a public test of the designs. Every group had a bit of skin in the game as their peers would see how their design would fare against the “Big Bad Wolf.” In the end, it was part design challenge and part game show, complete with smiles, applause and the boisterous cheers when homes survived.

The purpose of the challenge was multifaceted. In our new district strategic plan, a MURSD graduate will develop a multitude of competencies including effective communication, skillful collaboration, inspired innovation and solution seeking, just to name a few. We selected a design that would be  The build time of 25-35 minutes (depending on the age of the students) was selected to provide ample time for groups to sketch, discuss, built, test and revise their designs. We want students to take a playful approach to learn where peers and tinkering are a hallmark of the student experience.

The Designs

The prototypes took multitude of shapes and sizes. Some used all the materials provided while others used just one or two types. Older students were given random quantities of items so they could barter with other groups to get what they needed. Needless to say, tape was at a premium.

And some designs, particularly circular & triangular ones, withstood the tests better than others.

I think we could have used our materials better….instead of using sticks for walls, we should have used the index cards instead. The structure really wasn’t stable without them (popsicle sticks supporting the walls). — Gr. 5 student reflecting on his design.

I really liked the communication and teamwork that went in with my team, but we spent too much time thinking over our design rather than actually building. I think that’s something we would have changed so that we could get final discussions in and then fix what we needed to — Gr. 5 student reflection on group dynamics

Closing Thoughts

This picture might be one of my favorites from the whole event. If you look closely, you’ll notice the prototypes above the students’ heads. Teams held their homes up to volunteer to be the design to be tested. Students weren’t shying away from the challenge. They embraced it. They wanted to know what would happen to their designs because they took pride in what they created. We also noticed that cell phones, if they were out at all, were used to take pictures or share their designs with friends. By and large, our students were cognatively, behaviorally and affectively engaged.

Not that there weren’t areas for improvement. Given our tight 60 -75 minute timelines, it was difficult to introduce the challenge, build and then complete the final tests in that span. In turn, the reflection process that we designed for the students was rushed and therefor shortchanged. The content of the reflection videos on Flipgrid didn’t reach the level of quality that I think our students are capable of delivering.

We still haven’t figured out the right set up for the secondary level. We lacked the space at the middle school to place 200 students given the current schedule. We were able to conduct it in the gym for the high school students, but the introduction was difficult due to schedule transitions and the general space. Also, it’s hard to keep student attention once they get their hands on the material.

Finally, I’d like to better integrate the design into curricular goals of the teachers. While this design challenge was focused on problem solving, communication and collaboration, these tasks are prime opportunity to create meaningful contexts for the building of content knowledge.

Want to try a design challenge in your district?

If you’re interested in putting together your own design challenge, I have a planning guide and teacher video to support implementation.  Feel free to email me if you’d like a copy or to discuss it.

APS Learns 19

Personal Digital Inquiry

&

Creating to Learn

Thank you for joining me for the Personal Digital Inquiry Session (PDI) at the Ashland Professional Development day. On this blog post, you will find the slides from my session directly below. Additionally, this landing site provides an overview for structuring a PDI mini-experience in your classroom.

I wanted to provide links to the PDI planning guide as well as the Creative Brief tool to help you structure your PDI process in your own classroom. The brainstorming PDI brainstorming sheet can be found here. I’ve also included a full PDI Planning Template along with completed template with the 2030 Project exemplar.

 

PDI Session Slides 

 

Note: There are about a dozen resources with links at the end of the slide deck (AKA “Resource Farm”) to help support the PDI process. I’m happy to discuss any of the tools  by email dquinn@mursd.org 

PDI: UN Sustainable Development Goals

PDI Mini-Project

If you’d like to try a pre-made PDI process, you can use or adapt this structure centered on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The project plan will walk you through each phase of the PDI process. I would alocate 2 – 3 hours for the process. 

Wonder & Discover:

After watching the introductory video, explore the links below. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is the suggested starting point but read them in any order that you like and see fit. Consider the following questions as well as your own as you read. Don’t feel limited to using just these sites or these questions. Feel free to search for other sites for information as you see fit.

  • What goal do you find to be most personally meaningful?
  • What questions arose as you perused the site?
  • What do you know now that you didn’t know prior?
  • What action steps are most personally feasible?
  • What lingering questions do you have & where might a learner go from here?

Resource Links


Collaborate & Discuss:

After wondering and learning about your Sustainable Development Goal, jot down some notes on the and key takeaways on the Padlet. Find a partner and share your what you’ve learned. Where do you find there to be overlap? What’s dissimilar?

Collaborate & Discuss Padlet. I would suggest using this Padlet as a model to create your own. While you’re welcome to use this one, it might get confusing if multiple educators use the same site.


Create & Participate

You’ve wondered, you’ve discussed, and now it’s time to make! With your partner, choose whether you’d like to create a simple web page or a no-frills, interview-style microcast to share your learning. If you’d like to create a web page, visit the Adobe Spark Page portion of this section. If you’d like to create a podcast skip down the Sound Cloud section.

Your page or podcast can focus on whatever is personally meaningful for you. If you’re a little stuck, consider using some of the following prompts:

  • Why did you choose your particular focus goal?
  • What questions arose as you perused SDG the site?
  • What do you know now about this world challenge that you didn’t know prior?
  • What action steps toward achieving the goal are most personally feasible?
  • What lingering questions do you have & where might a learner go from here?

Option 1: Adobe Spark Pages

Click the above link and use the login credentials found below this section. Once logged in, scroll down the bottom of the page & select the web page option to open a new Adobe Spark Page.

You once on the page can use the existing theme or change it by clicking in the top right corner.  Use this digital space to create a multimedia site that shares an overview of your learning from the day. Links, images & videos are appreciated.

A quick video tutorial can be found here.

Option 2: SoundCloud Microcast

If audio is more your speed, feel free to take the light micro “podcast” approach and record an interview-style conversation between you and your partner centered Sustainable Development Goals. The interview can take any form you two chose. If you’re looking for some interview questions/topics consider:

  1. What goal do you find to be most personally meaningful?
  2. What questions arose as you perused the site?
  3. What do you know now that you didn’t know prior?
  4. What action steps are most personally feasible?
  5. What lingering questions do you have & where might a learner go from here?

Make it your own!

You can record on almost any device. If you have an iPhone / Andriod, I’d recommend Voice Record Pro app for recording. Opinion Podcast app works for iOS, too. Both can export directly to SoundCloud. You can also record your interview on your Mac using the QuickTime Player. All devices can use the Voice Recorder on 123apps to record your interview and then download the audio.

Once you’re done recording, submit your recording to SoundCloud through the app or through the web. The login credentials can be found below. Give your track a title, preferably with your name in it & add a picture of yourselves/goals to help provide a little context.

Click Save and head back to the stream to collect the direct link to your recording. You’ll need it for the final phase.

NOTEeI’ve created this Soundcloud (see login below) for PDI participants to use as a simple streamlined login so students do not have to create their own accounts. You may want to create your own Soundcloud account or you can have students create their own account and upload the audio recording. The most important piece is that the file has a weblink.

Login: pdi@eduquinn.com

PW: ETT2018


Analyze & Reflect

Student learning can be shared in a variety of ways. I’ve create the PDI PDI Posting & Reflection Site as an open-source landing site for teachers to use as a landing spot for student products and reflection. You’re welcome to use it as is or use it for inspiration. If you plan to contribute to the site, please email me dquinn@mursd.org 

Visit the PDI Posting & Reflection Site. Click on the “Share” Link at the top of the page which should take you to your form. In the first box, past the link to your SoundCloud recording or Adobe Spark Page.

Give your post a title, ideally with your first name in it. Please respond to 1-2 of the prompts in the Reflection section:

  1. How did it feel trying to generate questions around your goal?
  2. How might PDI fit in your classroom practice?
  3. If you had additional time, how would you improve your product?
  4. How could action toward the UN’s 2030 Sustainability Goals fit into your classroom?
  5. What other tools could be used to Create to Learn?

Note this is an open and shared page with content from other sessions. If you’re welcome to use it to join the collection of learners who have shared their initial impressions of the UN Sustaintainable Development Goals.


 

via GIPHY

FETC Slides & Materials

The IT Leadership Challenge

As districts continue to invest in digital devices and infrastructure, the meaning of “I” in IT leadership is evolving into a blend of instructional, innovative, and information technology. While the “I” may be changing, the leadership tools necessary for growing and sustaining innovation have not. In this session, we will collaboratively explore technology leadership through Kouzes & Posner’s Leadership Challenge. Participants will investigate and apply the “5 Practices of Exemplary Leadership” to life as an IT director and leave with strategies that can improve relationships with all school stakeholders.

The workshop guide will serve as your thinking space and provide you with practices you can use with colleagues when you return to your district. The activities are a blend of challenges from The Leadership Challenge Workbook, Charlie Coiro’s Tier II Leadership Seminar from the URI Summer Institute in Digital Literacy, and original designs. The session slides are below.

 

FETC: The IT Leadership Challenge from Dave Quinn

If you have any questions, please reach out to me via email or on Twitter.

Overcoming Resistance and Achieving Fidelity in IT Implementation

Implementing IT in schools can qualify as a “wicked problem” — one that can’t be addressed with traditional, binary approaches. We’ve studied this problem and developed a set of “wicked tools” based on improvement science, and they bring leadership and practical expertise to the conversation. In this hands-on BYOD workshop, participants will add tools and strategies to their IT leadership tool belt for leading effective transformation. Whether you are years into your technology journey or just beginning, this session will give you new resources to foster innovation, facilitate change, and encourage leadership throughout your school. (Psst: bring your entire school team and tackle your wicked problem together!)

I was also fortunate co-facilitate a workshop with Beth Holland on Monday. Our slides from the session can be found here.

MassCUE 19

Cleared to Launch: High Altitude Balloons, Physics, & Physical Computing

It’s always wonderful to return to MassCUE each fall, and I feel fortunate to be presenting this year with my colleague Jim Gorman. We’ll share the story of how we blended our collective knowledge of physics, technology, and high altitude balloon education into a hands-on relevant learning adventure for our students. We want to thank our partners in this project, MassCUE and the University of Massachusetts College of Education. The MassCUE Grants Committee that generously provided the funding to continue and expand Nipmuc Regional High School’s weather balloon project. The College of Education, in particular, Dr. Torrey Trust, graciously sponsored our teams so we could launch from Amherst in an attempt to avoid a water landing (more on that in the session). We’re immensely grateful.

Reading Resources

Personally, this project has emerged from several ideas or individuals that have shaped my thinking about learning. Connected Learning is an approach to learning designs that focuses on creating experiences that focus on student interests, peer and mentor relationship cultivation, and opportunities to connect interests to civic, career, and affinity groups for deeper learning.

In planning these experiences, I often use Scott McLeod’s 4 Shifts protocol. These reflection questions guide our planning to increase the authenticity and student agency in the student’s work. Additionally, I’ve found Jal Mehta’s and Sarah Fine‘s In Search of Deeper Learning to be a fantastic resource in thinking about what deeper learning could work in public schools. In particular, the idea of empowering students to “play the whole game” or giving students the opportunity to put academic skills into an authentic context is at the core of my vision for learning.

 

 

Session Slides

If you are having trouble accessing the embedded slides, you can click here to view the slide deck in a new window.

Cleared to Launch Challenge

It’s one thing to hear the story of our launch, but it’s better if you can experience it for yourself! We’re closing out our session with the Cleared to Launch Challenge. This series of tasks serve as a simulation of some of the steps students completed as part of our weather balloon project. Explore your flight path, analyze some video, and collect some data on your way to the moment of truth: tracking down your balloon. The first person to find thew payload will win a copy of Invent to Learn by Gary Stager and Sylvia Martinez.

Next Steps:

Think you and your students would like to join the Global Space Balloon Challenge? Here’s a short implementation guide to get you started for your first launch. It mirrors the process we used for our first attempt, so there are no references to Raspberry Pi sensors or the 360 camera. If you’d like to discuss a more complex design, or anything else, for that matter, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter or by email.

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