My Final Project: A Global Book Club

What were your goals for your lesson/project (Standards)?

I used the ISTE Standards for Administrators to define my goals for the project:

  • Visionary Leadership: e-Learning Vision at EAC

1b. Engage in an ongoing process to develop, implement, and communicate technology-infused
strategic plans aligned with a shared vision

  • Digital Age Learning Culture: Themes of the Book

2e. Promote and participate in local, national,and global learning communities that stimulate innovation, creativity, and digital age collaboration

  • Excellence in Professional Practice: Model by Being a Learning Leader

3b. Facilitate and participate in learning communities that stimulate, nurture and support administrators, faculty, and staff in the study and use of technology

In addition to these standards I also had the goal to pull in different aspects of each course. I wanted to work on visual design, connecting, playing around to figure out new things for myself, and attributing credit where due to name a few.

What tools did you use? Why did you choose this/these tools for this/these task(s)?

I used a variety of tools for my project (see below), but to make my video I used iMovie. I’ve worked on iMovie before, but mainly for fun personal videos of my son or short clips to share with parents for work.  Creating a storyboard, voice, and finding visuals was hard work.  I used icons from The Noun Project and created my avatar on Bitmoji (I feel like one of the cool kids now!).

Google Hangout Air

Youtube Streaming

Piktochart

Twitter

Vimeo (watched videos from book’s website)

GAFE (Docs, Forms, Email)

I choose some of these because over the course of COETAIL they have become my favorites and others because I wanted to challenge myself.

How did you go about introducing your lesson/project?

I shared my project and asked for participation through my PLN on Twitter. I also shared the project with colleagues at my school.  I realized through this process how hard it is to promote and publicize a project. I wanted to audience to be any educator that was interested, which is different from projects I’ve done with my classes.  I had to tweak my approach, but find the balance between spamming people and putting #GBCreatingInnovators out there.  

How did the students react? Include actual samples of student reflection (video, images, etc)

The members in our group enjoyed the meetings and learned a lot. They would send me brief messages throughout the project thanking or sharing something they learned.  I would love to continue meeting or sharing, though not as frequently to see how implementation at our respective schools goes.

Outcome? Did you meet your goals?

Yes, I met the goals I set, but there’s always room for improvement.  I think if I did another global book club I would have a clearer idea of potential pitfalls and get/give constant feedback.  I would also like to expand it to possibly have parents involved (gasp!).

Evidence of learning? Remember to include student evidence like video, images, reflections.

I think the learning that happened wasn’t always shared out, it was the wrestling with ideas in our heads and ideating how to implement it at our school. I know there was tons of reflection going on as far as the opportunities we provide for students, the language we use, and the lives we model. This project has and the group members I learned with have inspired me to find little ways to look for innovation in each day, as well as push the norms of traditional teaching.

#GBCreatingInnovators Meeting 1

#GBCreatingInnovators Meeting 2

#GBCreatingInnovators Meeting 3

So, COETAILers that’s it…for now.  I am so thankful for COETAIL and its amazing community that has challenged my thinking, encouraged exploration, and improved my teaching.  Tchau for now.

PS: I wanted to give credit to the outline of questions I saw on another COETAILER’s final reflection, but in the midst of a million tabs being open I lost it.  If you know who created these straightforward questions to clearly outline the process please let me know so I can give him or her credit.

#GBCreatingInnovators Meeting 1

Sunday morning I woke up and my husband informed me our internet wasn’t working. Normally that means more focused time with family, but this particular morning it meant moving into problem solving mode because the first meeting of #GBCreatingInnovators was scheduled.  My husband and I brainstormed ways to work around the blackhole of connection and finally realized I could just host the global book club in our apartment building’s lobby.  I went down beforehand to test the connectivity and it was all a go.

The meeting went well, but there is always room for improvement. As far as preparations one thing I learned is I should check with the members to make sure that they understand how to join the Google Hangout before actually sending the invitation to them.  Another thing I want to work on is not talking as much, I think I was so eager to share all that I learned that I spoke too much.

YouTube Preview Image

I’m working on a little synopsis of the first two chapters to share out with my colleagues, PLN, and our parent committee at school.  This will help refine my design skills and inform our school community of important learnings from the book. I’m hoping it will lead to further discussions with teachers and parents.

Here are some connections or resources we discussed:

When Success Leads to Failure  (article)

Redefining Failure (video)

Videos from the book 

I want to give a huge shout out to the members that could attend the first meeting of our global book club and thank you pushing my thinking and sharing your ideas.

Joy is having her 1st graders create digital portfolios for her final COETAIL project.

Suzy‘s continuous effort to grow her PLN and spread her ideas truly inspires me.

Thomas Hammerlund  gave interesting insight from a middle school perspective to all of us elementary educators.

Katherine whom I had never met before, but she jumped right in and shared some very great ideas and reminded me to allow for students (and teachers) to play and plan for multiple opportunities.

I’m going to end this with a complete geek out moment, Tony Wagner retweeted my tweet! Day = made.

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Final Project–Visual CVs: Helpful or Hurtful?

IDEA

For my final project I knew I wanted to do a Visual CV, I saw others from previous COETAILers and was inspired. I wanted to create an infographic and then make it into a Thinglink. The Thinglink plan changed because of various reasons (mainly because my type A personality didn’t like how the icons took up so much space and took away from the “flow” of the CV.)

PROCESS

I got to work on this project pretty early on in the course and following Rob’s idea I posted my first draft (below)  asking for feedback.  I also contacted administrators and recruiters within my PLN to ask for their opinion.  The feedback I got from Twitter was great, but was more focused on the aesthetics.

 

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However, the feedback from my current director, former directors, and a head hunter was not as stellar.  All of them didn’t like the idea of a visual CV–it was creative but when they are looking for candidates they want to easily be able to know all about them AND compare them to others quickly. My ego was a little hurt, I worked so hard on it, how could they not prefer it? After the initial letdown, I am glad I asked for their feedback. These are my next potential bosses and/or connections and I truly value what they say. Below is some of their feedback.

  • “The plus-side is that this is definitely eye-catching and stands out.  However, in my experience, when I am reading a batch of candidate resumes, I am seeking to be able to compare information quickly and if I get distracted by someone’s creativity the effect is not entirely positive.”
  • “Most administrators don’t have a lot of time to look at extra “stuff” from their candidates. So although I think it’s a great idea you upload your CV to Thinglink, you may need to have more information about you and your training and that sort of thing on your resume “just in case” the administrator can’t get to your interactive resume.”
  • “It draws my attention, but leaves me wondering about certain things. Knowing you as a professional, I don’t think it fully shows all you do and can do.”

REFLECTION

After letting their feedback marinate in my mind and heart for a little while I reflected on it. I know the main purpose of a CV is to get a job, but I want the future school I work at to want me for me. I consider myself creative and that comes through in a visual resume.  Some school heads might be completely turned off by my visual resume, but then comes the question of do I want to work at a school that isn’t interested in pushing the boundaries? They might not like the picture of my family, but my family is part of my core and I want my future employer to know that. I think this resume, while in words and specifics doesn’t tell more about me, in design and thinking it does.  I am proud of it and what it represents, and sure it could be risky to use it, but I’d rather put my true self out there than be another perfectly formatted resume in a pile of hundred of others just the same. Also, I think I could always have a traditional format of my resume on my website, this way they can get a more specific view of me as a candidate.

The second part of my reflection is on the overall process.  Man, designing is hard!  I spent hours deliberating over moving a line two centimeters, changing colors, aligning everything just right. My original plan changed hundreds of times and I still am not completely satisfied with this resume. I used Pages to create it and the Noun Project for all my icons. I matched my colors scheme with a palette from Adobe Color Thankfully, both of those programs/resources are easy to work with. I ended up going with a monochromatic, but in a green color palette. I also switched the boxes of who I am into a horizontal orientation and changed the words so they became nouns. I added two quotations that speak to me and my philosophy on education and leadership. I added some more information about myself at the top too.  I’m sure I will continue on working on this until my husband and I decide to go leave our current post.

Megan Kuemmerlin Visual Resume

Final Project: The Quest for Feedback

I’m sure this post is a little premature, but I loved Rob’s idea of getting feedback on his final project and then making adjustments.  I’m following my learning from Course 2 and I am stealing his idea, and of course giving him credit. Right now, I have two versions (monochromatic vs. colorful), so feedback on that and any other things would be much obliged.

eCV Megan Kuemmerlin
Monochromatic Version
e CV with Colors
Colorful Version

After I get feedback I plan to make this into an interactive CV by putting it on Thinglink. I want to have links to videos of me in action, images of my former classes/current projects, letters of recommendation, and access to documents/presentations I’ve created.

I would love some honest (I can take it, I have thick skin) feedback.  Thank you in advance for the help and support.

 

Course 1 Final Project: Passions Collide

Through this process I’ve learned that I am an idea girl. I can come up with some great ideas, but the plausibility is sometimes questionable. I struggled with this project because add to the dreamer in me and the feeling of loss from being out of the classroom and not having a class to call my own and I had no clue where to start.  Should I do a unit for teachers?  Parents?  The ELL students I work with for 40 minutes a day?  Or the multi-grade students in a free period I help coordinate? The choices were overwhelming and I didn’t know where to start.  So I started…multiple times.  I basically did 3 projects and didn’t like any of them.  Finally I read Rebecca’s final project and the light bulb went off.  Why not start with something I already had and REDEFINE it?

Another thing I learned is that it is hard to plan a global collaborative project. I’ve joined many, but starting one is more of a challenge. I got on Twitter and threw my net out a couple of times (remember how I started 3 projects?) but to no avail. I waited and continued planning, but as the due date got closer I realized things weren’t panning out and it probably wasn’t going to happen. I am not the Twitter queen, but I have some followers and if it was this hard for me to start a global project then how hard would it be for a new Tweeter or someone not on it?  Is there a database for collaborative projects? I know Skype has Skype in the Classroom and I found a Global Collaboration Day, but these weren’t exactly what I was looking for.  I was frustrated and added this as a challenge to tackle in the future.

The actual planning and creating the unit was the most fun (remember I’m an idea girl). I decided to go with the students that have a free period while other students are in Portuguese class.  In the past this has been a waste of time because there isn’t a curriculum and no one has really claimed it as their class.  This year I took on the challenge and came up some ideas.  I did Genius Hour in my 5th grade classroom for the past couple of years, and realized this is the perfect opportunity for students to use this time more effectively. I have introduced the passion projects, but was just going to do the sharing in-house.  This is where my PLN came in handy, a couple of weeks ago a PLN buddy at Lincoln to collaborate with their TEDed clubs, but at that point I didn’t really see how I could work it in. Then I thought although we aren’t another TEDed club, this is a great opportunity for my students to share their projects and receive feedback and also give feedback to their partners’ at Lincoln. I can already see this project growing into something similar to a TEDed forum.

One thing I want to look at after I teach the first round of passion projects is adding a mini-lesson on Pecha Kuchas.  I had to create one in one of my Masters course and it was a huge challenge, it really made me focus and plan out my content and then move on with the overall theme in mind.

Without further ado, my final project.  I would love feedback on how to improve it.  Thanks in advance!