Sunday, October 3, 2010

New ideas

Have you ever had an idea that hits you all at once? So far, (at least in education) my best ideas come to me this way. These are definitely the ideas that I'm the most passionate about. This includes the online class I taught about using interactive whiteboards, which I loved, and the idea I had for my first proposal to present at a conference (still waiting to hear about this one).

One of these ideas hit me the other week. As a new trainer for the interactive white boards, I realized that teachers needed something beyond just a how-to class for the IWB software. What I would have loved when I had already completed the training but was stuck on where to go from there, was a class to sit and work on digital "flipcharts" for the board with someone to help me when I got stuck.

So, I immediately emailed my instructional technology director about such a course who promptly...did not get back to me. However, 4 days later, when he did get back to me (since he'd been out of town), he said it was a great idea, and would I be interested in heading up this idea. I was thrilled to be given such a chance, and even more happy that this type of idea had already been floated by other trainers during the summer, so there was already support for it.

This plan is really starting to move along, as we have a planning meeting this week with trainers regarding what such a forum will look like. It will definitely be come and go, and have trainers available to answer questions as needed. We are planning whether it will have any teaching component for the whole group (like higher-order thinking, integrating the software into actual curriculum, etc.) or if it will just be an "Activboard Study Hall" as we are currently calling it. (Do you remember how awesome study hall was in high school? Best thing ever, in terms of homework.) As soon as those things are planned, we'll begin implementing these classes, so yay for good ideas coming to fruition!

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