Sunday, August 26, 2012

Last week was one of the most amazing weeks of my career as an educator. There was a new energy, a new level of excitement, a new motivation to do better-to be better at Hoover High School. Teachers were excited, students were excited, our administrative team was excited. It was awesome!

The Engaged Learning Initiative has brought a new level of energy to our school. It has been amazing how many teachers are embracing the use of their iPad and the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) style of teaching. Many have commented that they are trying new apps and teaching strategies and that they feel like their kids are more engaged in the classroom. Some teacher have taken the iPads and run with them, while other are still in the substitution phase, but we are thrilled with all of the efforts we are seeing. We are respectful of these levels and will support our staff through this process.

It has been exciting for me to get into classrooms and highlight what I am seeing through the use of Twitter and this blog. I have already had teachers say that they have tried using a new app or used a new site after seeing a post here or a Tweet. Before attending ISTE '12 this summer, I was apprehensive about putting my ideas and writing out there for everyone to see. After attending sessions from Patrick Larkin and George Couros, I decided that not blogging and using social media in our school was the mistake- not being scared of making mistakes.

I believe that this year is going to be different, special even at HHS. It is like watching a sports team that you cannot exactly explain what it is about the team that is special, but there is something. Something magical even that makes them stand out from the crowd. Something that makes you want to be a part of the team.

I saw this video on YouTube and it made me think of our use of the iPad. It is not just the iPad that is making a difference. The iPad may be one of the tools, but it is not the only factor that is contributing to the energy and excitement at HHS. "It's not about the shoes (iPad), it's about knowing where you are going... It's about having the courage to fail...Taking everything you have been given and making something better...It's not about the shoes (iPad), it's about what you do in (with) them".

It's not about the iPad, it's about what you do with them.

Michael Jordan Nike Commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yh9IGY2U2dQ

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