Posts Tagged ‘Digital Citizenship’

MLTI Professional Development Fall 2012

September 26th, 2012 1 comment

We’re coming to a school near you very soon! This year, the MLTI Professional Development team is going to be in every region of the state, delivering high quality workshops aimed at specific content areas for educators. We will be delivering a series of one-day, hands-on sessions, both in the fall and the spring. We would like to see as many teachers, librarians and administrators as we can attend these sessions, so please spread the word and we’ll see you on the road!

The Fall PD Session descriptors are listed below. For further details on the sessions, their dates and locations, and registration information, click on the session title. For further MLTI Professional Development information, please go to this page on

The Art of Technology in Mathematics

Unlock mathematical conceptual understanding through discovery using technology. Come explore technology options at your fingertips as we seamlessly integrate the MLTI with the new Common Core State Standards. This hands-on workshop will utilize resources to add to your toolkit for teaching and learning. Templates and applets will be provided as we look at ways to increase student conceptual understanding using Geogebra, Grapher, Numbers, and other tools on the MLTI image.

Supporting Students with Special Needs Using MLTI and Universal Design for Learning

This hands-on workshop will begin by exploring accessibility options and adjusting preference settings on the MLTI device to meet the needs of the learner. Participants will also learn to create lessons that target Response to Intervention and incorporate different learning styles to increase universal access for classroom activities. We’ll also examine exciting ways to “provide multiple means of engagement” for students through creating social stories and learning how to socially navigate the world around them. Participants will explore ways to apply these skills to creating Digital Portfolios. Students will ultimately be able to showcase projects that target their Individualized Education Plan benchmarks and goals as well as self-assess their work.

Shift Happens! Common Core, ELA and Digital Literacy
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) identifies 6 shifts in ELA/Literacy, including text complexity, writing from sources and academic vocabulary. This session will explore instructional practices and approaches using digital tools that address the shifts, and provide strategies for implementing the Common Core in the English classroom and across disciplines.

Leveraging Technology with Science Practices

In anticipation of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), many educators in Maine are already integrating some of the  8 Science and Engineering Practices into current instruction. Here’s a chance to look more deeply at those Practices from the Framework for K-12 Science Education that inform the NGSS. We will explore MLTI science applications for a hands-on investigation of their alignment to the Maine Learning Results and Practices of the Framework, and discover more ways that technology can enhance learning.

The Art Studio in your MLTI MacBook

Join MLTI to discover the art studio in your MLTI MacBook. Learn new ways to create art, explore tools to design digital portfolios, gain understanding in managing your digital art classroom and grow your research process knowledge. This day will be filled with valuable information for the art teacher.

Digital Citizenship in a Changing World

Students are living in a world of 24/7 access to technology that enables learning and communication in a way that was not possible even a few years ago. This workshop will help you to learn about the digital landscape our students are now living in, and how educators can help students think critically and make responsible choices to improve achievement. We will be exploring some of the free K-12 resources available through Common Sense Media and how to implement them in your classrooms and schools.
Integrating Technology into the World Language Classroom
Technology has produced new communication opportunities, created new ways to participate in culture, and redefined what we call community. This session will focus on integrating MLTI tools into the World Language learners’ experience. We will explore ways to use technology to immerse learners in authentic language and cultural experiences while keeping an eye on assessment and other realities like the Common Core and the Maine Learning Results.
Where’s the Evidence? Digital Tools, Source Material and the Social Studies Classroom

As emerging social scientists, students must have the skills to locate, interpret and use primary and secondary sources in their work. The wealth of source material online, and the digital tools to utilize these resources, present humanities teachers with enormous opportunities to develop these skills in their classes. This workshop will provide educators with strategies for using source material with students: how to find the resources, incorporate source material in student writing, and having students present their interpretations to the world.


May 17 Webinar – From Micro to Macro: 21st Century Economics Education

May 14th, 2012 Comments off

Economics is a subject that is generally given the lightest touch as part of a social studies curriculum, and yet an understanding of economic concepts can have some of the longest standing results in student’s lives beyond school. By incorporating a broader study of economics into curriculum beyond a social studies classroom, students will be able to create and stick to a personal budget, follow and predict fluctuations in stock and land prices, develop business plans that are sustainable and understand how economic practices influence international development. Economics is an important part of every student’s education, and every teacher can play a part in developing economic understanding.

This webinar will look at tools on the MLTI image and online that can support the teaching of economics. From personal finance to global economic indicators, there are many ways in which digital tools can build an understanding of concepts such as supply and demand, input and output and economic development. While this is not intended to be a comprehensive view of an economics curriculum, it will point the way to developing an engaging method of incorporating the subject into schoolwide teaching and learning.

To join the webinar, click on the Webcasts tab above and follow the links to register.

Image by images_of_money on Flickr. Used under a CC BY 2.0 license.

Free Online Course – Open Content Licensing for Educators

May 12th, 2012 1 comment
OER Educators graphic

CC BY 3.0 Sunshine Connelly (WikiEducator)

Ten years ago UNESCO coined the term Open Educational Resources (OER). Since then, interest in creating, collecting, and curating open content for teaching and learning has spread around the world. As part of the tenth anniversary celebration, the OER Foundation will host another free course, Open Content Licensing for Educators.

The course runs from June 20 – July 3, 2012 and the organizers are hoping to break the record of 1067 registrations set in a similar course they offered in January. I was a participant in the January sessions and truly enjoyed the exploration of issues around intellectual property, fair use, and creative commons licensing.  The discussions were fascinating and helped me understand how my thinking about intellectual property and copyright was similar to and often different from the thinking of participants in other parts of the world. Registration and course information can be found at the OCL4Ed wiki site.

March 15 Webinar – Using Social Media to Enhance Writing Skills

March 13th, 2012 3 comments
A collection of buttons with various social media icons

CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) Kexino

“Beware the Ides of March,” said the soothsayer in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, but in today’s world he would likely have tweeted that warning or written it on Caesar’s FaceBook wall. There’s no need for you to be wary of the Ides of March this year because that’s when we will present a webinar about how students can use social media to improve their writing.

In past webinars we have taken a close look at the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts, focusing on the standards for reading literary and informational text. This week we will explore the writing standards paying particular attention to digital writing. Many of you have participated in past webinars on the writing process from the 2009 – 2010 school year and have a good overview of how our MLTI devices support all stages of the writing process. If you need a refresher, you can find links to all those webinar recordings on our archives page.

In this session we will look specifically at social media and how educators can help students become better writers and meet the writing standards through the participatory web. We’ll look at the opportunities social media provide for writing different types of texts for different purposes, for publishing to various audiences, and for conducting research.

Please join us Thursday, March 15 at 3:15 or 7:15. Please click on the Webcasts tab to register. We have upgraded to a new registration system, allowing you to register directly in Adobe Connect, making the whole webinar process smoother and easier! If you have any questions, please contact Juanita Dickson. Click on the time you wish to participate in and you will be directed to an online registration form. Please type your email address carefully as all information will be sent to that address. After registering you will receive a confirmation email with a log in link – please use that link to log into the webinar prior to the start time.

May 12 Webinar: Cyberbullying and Your School

May 9th, 2011 Comments off

School systems in Maine and all over the United States are dealing with issues related to Cyberbullying.  It is deeply affecting our students and learning environments.  Join me and my guest Rebecca Randall from Common Sense Media at the 3:15 webinar as we look at this issue and give practical advice on how to deal with it in your school.

At 7:15 Representative Don Pilon will also join us to speak about the bill he is sponsoring LD 980, “An Act to Prohibit Cyberbullying in Schools”  Please come with your questions for Rebecca and Representative Pilon.

Select the webcasts tab from the top menu, then scroll down to April 26, 2011 and select the time interested to be directed to registration.

March 24 Webinar: Connecting Classrooms

March 23rd, 2011 13 comments

This webinar will focus on the connectivity of our classrooms: getting our students in touch with other students, educators and experts outside of our school buildings. There is tremendous learning to be gained from discussions and collaborative work with people outside of the immediate environs. Differing perspectives, language practice, sharing lifestyle and culture information can all lead to a rewarding experience for students.
I will be joined by my special guest Nadene Mathes, first grade teacher at Atwood Primary School. She will take us through a project her students worked on with students in Europe, helping us to understand the work that goes into connection projects and the benefits her students gained from taking part. The webinar will also look at places to get started on connection projects, some ideas for ongoing projects and tools that can be used to smooth the way.
The webinar will take place on Thursday, March 24, at 3.15 and again at 7.15. To register for the webinar, click on the ‘Webcasts’ tab above and follow directions.

Image by superkimbo on Flickr, used under Creative Commons License.

Preventing Cyberbullying In Our Schools and Communities – What Educational Leaders Must Do!

December 13th, 2010 3 comments

This Wednesday, December 15th at 4 PM the second MLTI Principals’
Webinar will take place. The topic is Cyberbullying – What Principals
Must Do. We’ve gathered some great people and resources for this jam
packed one hour session. Thom Harnett of the Maine Attorney General’s Office, Stan Davis from Stop Bullying Now, Ted Hall and Alice Barr from Yarmouth High School, Ed Brazee and Connie Carter from Operation Breaking Stereotypes, and MLTI Integration Mentor Teri Caouette will share advice and specific suggestions as well as philosophical insights about how to combat cyberbullying in our schools. Sooo…bring your principals and/or assistant principals, and even if you can’t get them, feel free to join us for what promises to be a timely and useful session.

December 9 Webinar: Digital Citizenship in Maine Schools

December 7th, 2010 7 comments

Students are spending about seven and a half hours every day with technology according to an article in the New York Times titled How Much Time Do You Spend Consuming Media Everyday? by Katherine Schulten. Students are connecting, creating and collaborating through this media. Much of their days are spent talking or texting on cell phones, computer surfing, doing homework, blogging, social networking, gaming or watching television.

This brings both tremendous opportunities and great challenges to this generation of school kids.

We only have to look at the newspaper headlines about the dangers of sexting, cyberbullying and leaving a damaging digital footprints to understand that students need guidance to make safe, respectful and responsible choices.

Teaching Digital Citizenship is critical to youth development, improved student achievement and ensuring continued access to the advantages that their digital environment provides.

MLTI is partnering with Common Sense Media to provide a digital citizenship curriculum in Maine schools. Schools all over Maine are helping students to become good digital citizens by implementing lessons in their schools.

Learn about this curriculum and how schools are finding ways to educate students to become safe, smart and ethical digital citizens. Every school is unique. Learn how leaders in Maine schools have have championed this curriculum. Find out how it can work in your school.

Please pre-register online by clicking on the webcast tab above.  For questions about the webinar, please contact Teri Caouette at

Accessible Media for Everyone: A Matter of Digital Citizenship

July 21st, 2010 1 comment
Closed caption example

Image by Henrique used under a GNU Free Documentation license, version 1.2

I’m preparing for a session at next week’s MLTI Summer Institute in Castine. So I’m doing some thought processing and figured I’d take advantage of our blogging platform to make that public, and hopefully fine tune my message in the process.

Access to information is a civil right. It has it’s roots in legislative mandates, such as Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, amended in 2008 (ADA). Section 508, a 1998 amendment to the Rehabilitation Act, requires Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology, including websites and software, accessible to people with disabilities, which has broader and direct implications for organizations that receive Federal funds. Most recently and relevant to education was the reauthorization of IDEA in 2004, which has provisions for universal design for learning (UDL). The Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 has a provision for UDL, as well. (As an aside, you might be interested in reading the recent “Dear Colleague” letter that the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Education jointly wrote to the presidents of all U.S. colleges and universities, advising them to not use ereaders that are inaccessible to students with blindness.)

With today’s tools, including those readily available to 1:1 MLTI schools, consistently meeting the legal mandates and – more importantly – doing the right thing has never been closer to conceivable. With awareness, knowledge, and skills (typically in that order), both teachers and students can become self-organizers of practices that model, promote, and foster accessibility for all individuals. I argue that this is an integral component of digital citizenship.

Here’s a classic example: Teachers and students are increasingly creating video to convey information in engaging and innovative ways. Indeed, video is a multimodal technology that can be effective for both teaching and learning. To be a model of UDL, however, even video needs to be scrutinized for accessibility for a wide range of learner needs and preferences. What are the abilities necessary to acquire information from a video? Consider students who are deaf or hard of hearing and learners for whom English is not their first language. Add closed captioning to the video and its content becomes inherently accessible to more students, and even embeds a literacy strategy for all learners.

With some training, coordination, and support from an administrator, teachers and students can accomplish closed captioning of their videos with a product like QuickTime, and begin modeling accessibility and digital citizenship for a wide audience.

A similar “barrier to learning” analysis can be conducted for all of the electronic information and digital instructional materials that we and our students create. And if we collaborate with students in this process, we’ll model and ultimately instill a disposition for doing the right thing.

Making Meaning – Critiquing Reality Using Web 2.0 to Foster Critical Thinking

June 17th, 2010 Comments off

This webinar explored the underpinnings of critical thinking, asking three questions:

Is it developmental?
How do we know when we see it?
Can it be measured?

A website that provides perspective about the developmental aspect is Kids on the Net: Critical Thinking Skills for Web Literacy – An Analysis of What Kids Should Know about Cyberspace. This site explains the development of cognitive, emotional, moral, and psychological issues of different children’s age groups. Their resources show that learning critical thinking should address these issues in a developmental way, building skills step by step.

There are quite a few different models/definitions/attributes of critical thinking that attempt to make it possible to observe it in action. Every description depended on the discipline it came from, i.e. psychology, philosophy, educational theory, etc. Here are some of the exemplary websites:

Discussion and Model of Critical Thinking from Ed Psyc Interactive
Model of Information Seeking and Critical Thinking from Baltimore County Public Schools
Partnership for 21st Century Skills and Critical Thinking

How are we to deal with the issue of standardized testing and the teaching of critical thinking? In an ERIC abstract (ED312622) of “Literacy and Critical Thinking: The NAEP Literacy Studies and What We Are Not Teaching about ‘Higher Reasoning Skills,” by Craig Walton (1989,) the author states that the elements of synthesis or summary, analysis or problem solving, argumentation, and experimentation are skills that seem to be lacking in students. He sees a correlation of that lack with educators’ ignorance of those higher skills and how to teach them. That was quite an indictment, and worth challenging.

Socratic questioning is a way of helping students face the issue of critical thinking. The questioning can be used first by the teacher, and as the students start to become more aware of  how the questions help their thinking, the students can begin questioning each other and themselves. This website from Northern Illinois University Consortium for Problem-Based Learning provides the foundational precepts and a matrix of exemplary questions.

Web 2.0 has been called the Read/Write Web. That is because you become an active participant, not just a passive viewer – You interact with the information. How does this help critical thinking? By the fact that people make comments. All of the following websites provide examples of ways that teachers can provide students examples of commenting that they can see, critique and respond to.

Comments about places to stay:

A “safe” current event website that kids can practice making comments:

International Movie DataBase – using movie reviews and forums as examples of critique:

Going beyond the Wikipedia articles and looking at the discussion and history of the content:

Responding to visual examples:

Commenting both textually and visually:

Finally, any blog or wiki could be used to help kids learn and practice discourse and critique, as well as the Gallery, Discussion and Chat in Studywiz.

Measuring critical thinking can be a wicked problem, depending on what you are looking for. Perhaps you can develop small rubrics based on your deconstruction of pertinent elements of critical thinking. In that manner students could review or make comments based on individual aspects of critical thinking skills on which they are focused. Here is a higher education rubric for critical thinking that can be used as a reference for ideal goals. And here is another that has been used for higher education and business with a rationale as well. An accompanying document from Insight Assessment proposes that there are dispositions as well as skills involved in critical thinking and provides self-reflective questions.

Just to be provocative, here is a quote from a recent article to think about:


Much as Darwin’s theory of natural selection depends on genetic variation, any
theory of democracy depends on a multiplicity of ideas. It is the responsibility of
the citizenry, the media, and the schools to safeguard the expression of those
ideas. Schools have particular responsibilities in this regard. Healthy critical
analysis is one hallmark of a mature democracy, and educators have a responsi-
bility to create learning environments that help to realize these ideals. There are
many varied and powerful ways to teach children and young adults to engage
critically – to think about social policy issues, participate in authentic debate
over matters of importance, and understand that intelligent adults can have
different opinions. Indeed, democratic progress depends on these differences.”

“No Child Left Thinking: Democracy at Risk in Canadian Schools,” Joel Westheimer; CANADIAN EDUC ATION , Spring 2010; Canada Education Association; p 5-8