Student-lead news broadcasts at North Elementary

These three 5th graders are part of a team that broadcasts live news every day through Google+ Hangouts On Air to their 3-5 elementary school building. Classrooms can tune in live, or visit the recorded news broadcasts later in the day when the schedule requires. All broadcasts are on-the-fly. They don't edit and video, simply cover what is happening around their school and community.   

Armed with a Chromebook, webcam and tripod, they also cover live events like the MN Department of Education Commissioner's visit to North Elementary in Princeton, Minnesota, today. 

They occassionally have a Roving Reporter, live interviews held outside of the studio (but within range of the school's wifi) from an iPad, join in on the Hangout broadcast. 

View the student-lead coverage of Commissioner, Dr. Cassellius' visit to North Elementary:

Initial survey results

Thanks to everyone who gave feedback on the What I Need survey. The results will help us customize our support, and helps us know where people are in their evolution as a digital-age teacher.

Some highlights:

Many people indicated a need for more / better / different devices for students to use. We will be taking a closer look at what specific device needs are desired.

Many people still looking for training on Google Apps for Education. More training on these is imminent.

Many people desire more work time and planning time to work on integration. This will certainly be a point of discussion as future staff times are scheduled and planned.

More to come! stay tuned!

Promote and model digital citizenship and responsibility

The ISTE NETS go beyond what you can do with a device to what you should do with a device.  This stance supports one of the most basic tenets of teaching with technology; that all teachers are responsible for teaching digital citizenship and responsibility. Too often we look to the computer applications or media center teachers to carry this load, but that is a dangerous path.

Unless all educators are knowledgeable in basic digital ethics and responsible use, and are committed to embedding these constantly in their digital instruction, we leave a lot of the most dangerous consequences to chance. We tend to think that as the digital natives, students understand the reach of social media, realize that digital photos are forever, and are clear on why plagiarism is unethical and illegal. We need to remember that they are still children, and they are still learning.  While we think it great practice for a child to be reminded 300 times by 30 adults over 10 years that talking to strangers in real life is dangerous, we sadly often leave the same admonition about meeting people online to a few chance mentions by a few adults spread out over a few years. It takes a village.