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

Digital Learning Communications for College and Career Readiness

Participate and share

Participate and share : Poster

Tuesday, June 25, 1:00–3:00 pm
Location: Posters: Level 4, Terrace Ballroom Lobby, Table 41

Rebecca Goddard   Jennifer Hall   Wanda Hanley  
Today's students face a variety of public speaking experiences as they transition from early adolescence to college-ready. Learn how digital communications such as podcasts, vidcasts and blogs can be combined with public speaking platforms such as elevator pitches and panel discussions to prepare students for success.

Audience: Curriculum/district specialists, Teachers, Technology coordinators/facilitators
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices useful
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Participant accounts, software and other materials: Blogger, Audacity, iMovie or WeVideo,
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Communication and collaboration
Grade level: 6-12
Subject area: Language arts, Career and technical education
ISTE Standards: For Students:
Creative Communicator
  • Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.
For Educators:
  • Explore and apply instructional design principles to create innovative digital learning environments that engage and support learning.
  • Shape, advance and accelerate a shared vision for empowered learning with technology by engaging with education stakeholders.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

The purpose of our presentation will be to share how we updated the traditional public speaking class to prepare students for a work environment of the future. Public speaking in the high school setting can be so much more than presentations and slideshows. We wanted our students to get a taste of work experience in the school setting. In our course, students work by common themes rather than outlined steps to bring an idea from planning to production to publishing much like they would be assigned a project from an employer. Our students have learned the technical skills to create podcasts, blogs, promotional videos, and so much more incorporating common themes and using presentations to share their experiences. Our students begin their journey by creating production companies complete with websites and mission statements that they will work with for a full semester. Groups then rotate through five different projects spending about 2-3 weeks each creating products (blogs, podcasts, vidcasts, promotional videos, and public service announcements). Prior to beginning a project, students learn skills and develop an elevator pitch to their peers for feedback and approval of their ideas. During a project, we rotate and to check in with groups and offer guided lessons for technical support and to give formative feedback on the progress. After each project, the collaborative group presents about their experience in a formal setting and feedback is given.

The course grading is developed around the idea of feedback. Students are encouraged to edit using feedback from their presentations before final grades are assigned. We feel this method encourages students to focus on the process of work rather than a grade.

The culminating project is a longer documentary on almost any subject the student driven company chooses.

In addition to their 5 major projects, students complete smaller units on newer formats of public speaking such as panel discussions or elevator pitches and create their online presence via sites like LinkedIn and/or Blogger. Throughout these mini units, we work with students to give them skills that will prepare them for communication skills beyond traditional classroom presentations.

Attendees to our session will be inspired by the authentic products our students create and will hear first hand accounts of the students who struggled through the less restrictive style of instruction. We will share examples of assignments, rubrics, student work, and resources for mini units. Our students reported the class as being their favorite yet most challenging course. Because of the freedoms they were given to research and create, students enjoyed the tasks themselves. However, as students adjusted to this style and realized that our guidance would be more of inquiry than a list of requirements, planning and implementation became a true growth experience that we will share with attendees.

Supporting research

Mottet, Timothy P. “Proficient Enough?” National Communications Associaition, NCA, 1 Nov. 2006,
Wagner, Tony, and Ted Dintersmith. Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids for the Innovation Era. Scribner, 2016.
Bean, Karen, and Susan E. L. Lake. Digital Media: Concepts and Applications. South-Western, 2012.

More [+]


Rebecca Goddard, Pine Lake Preparatory
Jennifer Hall, Atlanta Public Schools

Jennifer Hall has been an educator for more than twenty-one years and currently serves as an Educational Technology Specialist (ETS) for Atlanta Public Schools. As a National Board Certified Teacher, Jen has seventeen years of middle school classroom experience. Jen’s expertise includes technology integration, gifted education, project-based learning, curriculum writing, digital resources, Web 2.0 tools, video production, and professional development. As an ETS, Jen collaborates with teachers, works with students and provides school-based trainings, as well as district-wide professional development. Jen is passionate about all things #edtech and loves working with teachers to enhance instruction and engage students.

Wanda Hanley, Wake County Schools