Cell Phones – Learning in Your Pocket – Cell phones are becoming ever more powerful and ubiquitous. Nearly every student has a cell phone and, in the next few years, nearly every student will have a smart phone. As cell phones are becoming pocket-sized computers, there is a tremendous amount of potential for learning, assessment, and collaboration. Learn how to utilize these resources to improve communication with your students and let them have greater participation in the learning process.
Changing Pedagogy in a World of Technology – Technology is always on, always around, and inherently personal. While a particular school may have a lot or a little technology, it is increasingly become a vital part of students’ daily lives. In addition to technology becoming more available in schools, many school are choosing to go 1:1, meaning that every student and teacher is given a device, such as a laptop, to use and take home, or are allowing students to bring in their own computers and phones to use in school. This keynote focuses on how pedagogy must be adapted in this environment to utilize the new technology to its best effect instead of competing with it for students’ attention.
Grades and Learning – Are they mutually exclusive? - In this keynote, drawing heavily on Alfie Kohn and Daniel Pink, I discuss intrinsic and extrinsic motivation, unintended side-effects of grading, methods for making grades more meaningful, and potential alternatives like standards-based grading and abolishing grading all together.
Make Learning Meaningful – A majority of assignments that students have to complete are isolated and irrelevant to students’ lives. This does not mean that they are not important, but that students do not perceive them as so. This will help educators to plan assignments that are much more engaging and relevant to students. This includes examples of the proper use of educational technology, but focuses on authentic problem-based learning where students solve real-world problems for authentic audiences and master standards through doing so.
Professional Development 2.0 – This is based on my book, Professional Development 2.0: Take Control of Your Learning. It helps teachers learn how to develop a personal learning network, going into social networking, social bookmarking, blogging, and unconferences. A free pdf copy of my book is included for any educators in your district.
Promoting Reflection – This keynote focuses on how to help teachers, through blogging and other means, to be reflective practitioners. It discusses what that means and how reflection can practically help them to better serve their students. In turn, it enables them to help promote authentic reflection among their students.
Reading, Writing, and Reflection Across the Curriculum - Reading and writing are skills that are vitally important to every class, but they are significantly different in each subject area. This gives educators techniques to use to help students improve in reading and writing in different content areas. Also, learning is deeply tied to reflection. Time will be spent on giving teachers techniques to facilitate reflection that results in retention and deeper understanding.