Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Exchange
at ISTELive 21
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Defining Amazing: Making Your School Something Special

Explore and create
Pre-registration required

Explore and create : BYODex

Sunday, June 23, 8:30–10:00 am
Location: Franklin 5-6-7, Marriott

Rushton Hurley  
Learn how leaders can foster an exploratory and collaborative professional environment to substantially enrich the experiences of a school's students and professional teams. Discover how technology can improve learning experiences and community perceptions, as well as communication concerns for effectively inspiring one's team.

Audience: Chief technology officers/superintendents/school board members, Teachers, Principals/head teachers
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices required
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Participant accounts, software and other materials: Only internet access and a browser are required.
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Communication and collaboration
Grade level: PK-12
ISTE Standards: For Administrators:
Excellence in Professional Practice
  • Promote and model effective communication and collaboration among stakeholders using digital age tools.
Systemic Improvement
  • Lead purposeful change to maximize the achievement of learning goals through the appropriate use of technology and media-rich resources.
For Coaches:
Teaching, Learning and Assessments
  • Coach teachers in and model design and implementation of technology-enhanced learning experiences emphasizing creativity, higher-order thinking skills and processes, and mental habits of mind (such as critical thinking, metacognition and self-regulation).

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

We live in a special time. Opportunities abound for staff and students to make what happens in classrooms more engaging and effective, and teachers are much closer to making great things happen with technology than they typically know. How leaders foster an exploratory and collaborative professional environment will determine whether these opportunities to substantially enrich the experiences of the students and professional team are realized at the school.

Participants will learn to:
* encourage and use more demanding student work for stronger academic outcomes,
* build new support in the community, and
* better encourage teachers to explore new techniques.

The core of the presentation is built around a simplified expression of learning activity evaluation using a scale ranging from "powerfully memorable" to "waste of time." This is loosely modeled on the SAMR model for technology integration (Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition), but focusing less on the use of the technology and more on what the technology enables for challenging students at ever-higher levels.

Built upon this discussion is a look at how schools explore possibilities for improvement, with special attention to leadership and staff collaboration. Specific examples of how to use time well will be explored alongside leadership characteristics that build confidence for all team members.

References to successful implementation of these techniques at several schools around the world will help make concrete the ideas discussed.


* Introduction (20 min): setting the stage and distinguishing among good, great, and amazing learning experiences (participants will contribute ideas via an online tool)
* Promoting Fascinating (15 min): exploring simple techniques for getting higher-quality work from students (participants will take part in two sample activities)
* Moving Learning (15 min): looking at learning activities using a scale ranging from "powerfully memorable" to "waste of time" (participants will see and hear stories of strong and weak learning)
* Communicating Strengths (15 min): exploring digital media tools for conveying strengths to the community (participants will watch a video of student work and its value for PR purposes, as well as look at photography tools for telling stories of learning)
* Exploratory Learning (10 min): discussing exceptional student projects (participants will watch students describing projects in a video used to promote the school in the community)
* Imagining the Cool and Finish (15 min): working together to develop ideas for what can be done at their schools (participants will use their settings to consider concrete possibilities); Q&A with remaining time

Supporting research

* "Surveys consistently show that teachers are interested in technology, but need increased opportunities to develop their capacities." (Cradler, J., Freeman, M., Cradler, R., and McNabb, M. (Sept., 2002). Research Implications for Preparing Teachers to Use Technology; Learning and Leading with Technology, ISTE)
* Traditional notions of in-service training or dissemination need to be replaced by opportunities for ‘knowledge sharing’ based in real situations. (Darling-Hammond, L. and McLaughlin, M. W., Policies that Support Professional Development in an Era of Reform, Phi Delta Kappan, 1995, 76(8) pp 597–604)
* "If technology is to be used by students, then teachers must possess the confidence, understanding, and skills to effectively incorporate technology into their teaching practices." (Winter, 1997). What Research Says: Training Teachers for Using Technology; Journal of Staff Development, National Staff Development Council)

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Rushton Hurley, Next Vista for Learning

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