RED Team

Turning Up the Volume – Advocacy in Action

By Dr. C.J. Huff, Superintendent, Joplin (MO) Schools, and NSPRA Vice President at Large – Superintendents of Schools

Each day professional educators across our country walk into our schools with the noble purpose to educate and grow our next generation of leaders, employees, neighbors, and families. And with each passing day our noble purpose – the reason we do what we do – becomes muddled as we find ourselves fighting perceptions that don't really reflect reality. But as a school board member reminded me once, perception is reality. So the question that must be answered is, “How do we change perception?”

What’s Working...What’s Not?

As you read this article, from coast to coast, school districts will be pushing the send button on thousands of press releases. Spelling bee champions will be recognized, teachers of the year announced, scores from last night’s ballgame celebrated, a big decision by a school board shared, the kindergarten penny drive that raised funds to help the local humane society – the list goes on. We will permeate cyberspace with the good news of our schools. We will tweet, post, click send, like, repost, resend again with the hope that someone... anyone... will pick up on a story and that it will go viral in a good way. And we wait. Then wait some more. We tell great stories, but few are there to listen.

But as a school board member reminded me once, perception is reality. So the question that must be answered is, “How do we change perception?”  <click to read more>

5 examples of blended learning success

Discover how New Hampshire is sustaining positive blended learning policies in its schools blended-competency. As new educational models gain support among educators and students who want to learn in new and different ways, blended learning is perhaps one of the strongest among these new models.

Now, researchers have discovered that some of these models work well together–for instance, blended learning and competency-based learning, another strong model in which students advance based on mastery and not grade level or time-in-seat, have evolved to overlap and complement one another.

A new report from the Clayton Christensen Institute, authored by Julia Freeland, notes that blended learning supports competency-based learning in at least four ways:

1. “Online content can offer a continuum of learning along which students can progress at a flexible pace.”
2. Assessments can be delivered on-demand when students are learning online.
3. Students have more than one lesson, or one information source, through which to access content, because online learning is delivered in a “more modular manner” than face-to-face instruction. This leads to students having “multiple pathways to mastery.”
4. Blended learning offers tools for personalized education, which can support districts that are trying to scale competency-based learning systems.

<Click HERE to read more>

A New Wonderful Wheel on SAMR and Bloom's Digital Taxonomy

The buzz that the Modern Taxonomy Wheel generated over the last couple of weeks  has not yet died out and now we have a new updated wheel from the same guy Allan Carrington. I love Allan's work and I find it really interesting. His wheels come along in such a visually attractive way summarizing most of the apps and web tools we have been sharing here with you.

If you already had a chance to have a look at the previous wheel and compare it with this new one you will notice that Allan has brought about some new updates to the new wheel. There is now a particular shared focus on both SAMR model and Bloom's digital taxonomy to help teachers better leverage technology in their teaching.

If you are not familiar with what SAMR is all about, please read this post.

Now, Click on this LINK to get the poster as PDF.

Sioux City school technology director wins state award

SIOUX CITY | Efforts to expand technology in the Sioux City school district have earned Technology Director Neil Schroeder an award as one of the state’s top administrators.

Schroeder was named Iowa Technology & Education Connection’s administrator of the year Friday. The award is given to a principal, superintendent or other administrator who expands the use of technology in their district.
ITEC, which will give the award to Schroeder during its fall conference in Des Moines on Oct. 14, is a group that works with districts to expand technology in the classroom.

Shroeder was quick to share the credit for the district’s success.

“It’s kind of a humbling experience,” Schroeder said of the award. “I really don’t care who gets the credit for the award. This is an outgrowth of great administrators and great teachers.” <READ MORE>