I feel a little funny about evaluating my PKM system because I feel like mine is worthy of an elementary school science fair…from 1997. Haha!
In the video that I’ve linked to this blog post (from Disney’s “Meet the Robinsons”), Lewis is applauded by his future family for his failure. I think I want to be adopted by the Robinson’s, too, but I think I need to give myself a break and stop focusing on the parts that are still lacking. I’ve grown… I am now on Twitter! I now blog! I now carry THREE apple devices with me on vacation. That’s progress.
So, regarding my PKM system, I have definitely streamlined some of my elements and I believe I’ve equalized the “flow chart”. When I first designed my system, I chose a “funnel” method that resulted in A LOT of information coming in (Capturing) through Twitter, Feedly, WordPress, EBSCO, Facebook, and other subscription services. Those articles and ideas sat in the middle of my design (Curating) as I thought about the information and how it could apply to my life and my career. Specifically, I employ Evernote to keep my reading organized and accessible. Between Evernote, Feedly, and Easybib (where I store my references), my curation process is pretty well stocked.
The biggest change in the system is that I’ve opened up the bottom funnel… opening the flood gates?… and I’ve increased my creation of material through my blog with Word Press, my Twitter account, and my other writings for classes, my dissertation, and my other social media such as Instagram and Facebook. I’m still a bit uncomfortable, but I am so appreciative of my cohort friends and professors who have read my thoughts and encouraged me with comments. I think that has really been the key to this final stage of the PKM. I really hope to teach this method with my high school students this year, giving them the support of an engaged peer group and an applauding teacher. That has made all the difference in opening up my creation/sharing of information.
I’ll be redesigning my PKM graphic to much more balanced. Just have to keep moving forward, right?
I read an article today called 11 Free Online Courses For Teachers (PD Opportunity) by an Edudemic blogger named Katie Lepi, who I have cited before in other blogs. In the article, Lepi makes the point that the summer can be an excellent opportunity for professional development, and the teachers get to control the content and the where/when.
Now that I’m brainstorming, I’m reflecting on my PKM system (Personal Knowledge Management system) and thinking that I would NEVER have seen this blog post if I hadn’t been forced to create a system that included a “capture” tool such as Feedly. I’m thankful that I am on the road toward a good pattern of capturing, curating, and creating. I’ll blog about that later today.
Just looking at this list that Katie Lepi has compiled gets my brain storming! I particularly think I can make some small but impacting changes in my classroom that will help to set up my BIG second semester change… a tablet or laptop will be required in Mrs. Norton’s AP classes starting in 2015. Am I little behind? I don’t care. As Walt Disney quoted time and time again, “Keep Moving Forward!”
Looking at Michelle’s article, I particularly appreciate her final point when she writes, “You read blogs because you’re drawn to the personalities behind them, and that’s why others read your blog. If you publish something that’s a real reflection of you — whether it’s an in-depth analysis of a political issue or a series of haiku about your bicycle — your fans will read and like it. Give yourself some credit — people like you, they really do.”
This point is hard for me to swallow because it is so humbling. I am grateful for those who are reading my blog… most of whom are reading it because we are in an EDD cohort together. Still, I’m grateful because we are supporting each other in our endeavor to contribute a verse (I know it’s Walt Whitman, but I hear Robin Williams ever time!)… to become great trees (the great Maya Angelou). Thank you, sincerely, thank you.
I captured this article and saved it to my Evernote folder because leadership expert @TimElmore re-tweeted it. The article is written by Kyli Singh and, clearly, the audience is about 20 years younger than me. However, I found interest and inspiration in several of the tips, particularly the overarching point that I should use my summer time wisely and purposefully. A few of the nine points are already fast-tracked in my life: blogging, reading, traveling. But the one that REALLY CAUGHT MY EYE is point #4: Improve Your Resume.
Even though I am not looking for a new job, it is always a good idea to work on your resume. In fact, it’s particularly beneficial to update it and redesign it when you are NOT looking for a new job because you are calmer and more objective. Then, just in case opportunity comes knocking, you are ready with a resume in the email that doesn’t scream “I JUST UPDATED THIS MORNING!”. At the end of the article there’s a bonus link on how to make your resume multi-dimensional. I will DEFINITELY be checking that out and blogging on it later!
I know that most adults don’t have the summer free, and the word “free” is definitely misleading. My summer isn’t free, but it’s definitely different from the school year. My “summer-self” is different from my “school-year self”.
So, take a look at this article and apply it to your life. Hand it to a young adult who could apply it to his/her life. Either way, make each season purposeful because we only get so many summers.
This week, I wrote a research
paper on the benefits of Edmodo as a social media resource for classroom teachers who do not already have learning management systems like Moodle or Blackboard in place.
I LOVE EDMODO. So now you know my bias, right? In fact, many students at my school, Concordia High School, call me the “Queen of Edmodo”. I think that’s a fair label.
I would love to share with you 3000+ words on why Edmodo is awesome, and if you’d like to explore it yourself, here is a link to some helpful video tutorials that will get you ready for next year! But, my pedagogial post today is dedicated to a new Edmodo app (it’s free, just like Edmodo!) called Snapshot. Click here to check out the Edmodo Blog about Snapshot. I’m definitely saving that link to my Evernote! I’m also linking some promo videos on Snapshot that will give you a more creative idea of what the app is all about.
Snapshot is brand new and I haven’t integrated in my classes yet because we finished over two weeks ago! But, I’m definitely going to use it next year as I strive to align my lessons, assessments, and curriculum to the Common Core. I anticipate that I’ll really like two aspects: (1) data-driven assessments that I can track for formative lesson planning, and (2) students won’t feel threatened by some quick little assessments – they might even have some fun! Do any of you use Edmodo? Have you tried Snapshot?
Students, while proficient in the use of digital tools in their personal lives with applications such as Facebook and iCloud tools, actually have little experience in the integration of internet/application technology in their academic pursuits.
Teachers and professors, while appearing technologically savvy by presenting traditional curriculum through a digital lens such as Prezi or Blackboard, actually aren’t far ahead of their students because they are either non-users, or, like their students, really only employ technologies for personal convenience. They have the tools, but don’t have the skills.
Institutions of higher learning fail to address digital competence, “the confident and critical use of information and participation in society (from Ala-Mutka, Punie & Redecker, 2008, p.4), in their formal student outcomes; instead universities misinterpret digitizing their curriculums and other online learning mechanisms resulting in low digital competency outcomes.
The article also highlights the reality that students, whether they are fresh from high school or returning as adults, have a “digital expectation” that, through their studies at the university level, they will be more “digitally fluent” than when they entered. Thus, the DIGITAL MISMATCH can cause frustration, embarrassment, and even resentment in graduates that feel unprepared for the professional world.
Is the digital mismatch for real? You bet it is and I’m conflicted about whose responsibility it is to address it. A good place to start is with the formal addressing of digital outcomes at the highest levels of higher education (actually, I like that focus to filter all the way down to elementary). Then, there needs to be a real assessment of the professors who need to be integrating, sharing, teaching, and yes, even learning the skills that make up digital competency in the academic arena. In my doctoral program, I am proud to see and applaud my professors doing what it takes to be cutting edge. Finally, curriculum must be imbued with digital outcomes that go beyond the choice between PowerPoint or Prezi. Is this a new class? Do we dump these outcomes on the English teachers… yet again?
I think I have strong feelings about all of this, however, I’m going to let my thoughts and opinions marinate a bit more. In the meantime, would you please answer this poll and leave your thoughts in the comments?
SEEK – Over the years I’ve grown pretty adept at the Seek portion, but usually only as a “point of need” strategy for finding research that I needed at that moment. It certainly wasn’t a deliberate “habit of the mind”. So now, I am actively SEEKING out information, education, and inspiration. But, I think this graphic says it all. It’s pretty overwhelming to jump in. Isn’t there a drip system? I guess that’s what my new memberships with Feedly, Twitter (@sknorton_), and WordPress (follow me here!) are all about. I’ve chosen a few feeds and blogs to follow and, right now, I have plenty of incoming information!
SENSE – I’m having a bit of trouble with this step of the PKM system, not because I don’t know how to make sense of the information, but because I’m having trouble making sense out of all my new APPs! I know that I will work this out within a few weeks, but right now I’m wasting more time than I’m saving… unfortunately. This is where Evernote, Feedly, and Dropbox really come in. I even “curated” some very, VERY helpful tutorials on Evernote… in my Evernote. Would anyone like me to share those? Most of them came from a very helpful chap on YouTube named Steve Dotto. Here’s a link to his channel with many helpful tech videos! https://www.youtube.com/user/dottotech.
SHARE – I’m also struggling with this step a bit because I feel awkward about asking people to read my thoughts and opinions. But, as this “funnel” graphic demonstrates, this step helps me and can help my colleagues to filter through the material and share only the very best articles, tools, etc. How am I sharing? Well, this BLOG is the main vehicle for sharing. I also employ Twitter by posting these blog posts for my friends and followers. I’m going to start a weekly Content Curation blog post where I link, explain, and share some of my best finds each week. Who knows? Maybe I will get some followers, too!