Giant Stride

It’s all that exists between you and a new experience.

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Connecting Two Worlds

I had the opportunity to teach students across the Roanoke Valley about the ocean last week. 

That’s not an unusual statement for a teacher to make. After all, we work with students all the time and if we’re lucky, we get to teach about the things we love.What made these lessons unique was the vehicle for lesson delivery.  I was scuba diving in Cozumel, Mexico, while teaching and used VoiceThread to answer the questions that students asked.
 For as long as I’ve been diving in the ocean, I’ve struggled to find a way to bring this experience to the classroom. I’ve brought back pictures,videos and stories, but I’ve never been able to really “nail” the content. The kids are always interested in the things I bring back and the lessons always go well, but I always walk away from the lessons feeling like I’ve generated interest, but not necessarily understanding.
This is as close as I’ve ever come to helping students understand the balance of the ocean ecosystem. I’ve posted my lesson invitation, the one used to harvest questions before leaving for Cozumel, below. The other Voicethreads are posted on the page called Ocean Voicethreads.
[kml_flashembed movie="http://voicethread.com/book.swf?b=18729" width="480" height="360" wmode="transparent" /]

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The Fall 2007 Teacher Training Institute

Our regional Teacher Training Institute was held last weekend at the CATCE center in Franklin County, VA. 85 educators gave up most of their weekend to learn how to effectively use technology-rich lessons with their students. I ran sessions on Digital Story Telling, a teaching technique that is near and dear to my heart, and co-taught a presentation on Internet Safety with fellow Master Teacher, Sharon Bolan.

All in all, I feel like the weekend was a success and that the educators that attended came away with several easy-to-use ideas and activities. Several of the educators asked for our Internet Safety presentation, so I’ve uploaded it here and will link it to the Web Safety Wiki. http://websafety.wikispaces.com

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