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Leadership Day 2009

Dr. Scott McLeod of the blog Dangerously Irrelevant put out a challenge for all edu bloggers to write a post related to effective school technology leadership.  Below is my contribution to Leadership Day 2009: I have found that the biggest hinderance to effective school technology is not a lack of funding, resources, or technology.  The biggest hinderance has been teachers who are unwilling to learn something new.  For me, “life long learner” describes the ideal teacher.  There are many reasons teachers find not to learn to use technologies to increase student learning.  They may be overwhelmed with duties and tasks currently being imposed on them by administration.  They may have lesson plans that they created 20 years ago that they have become so attached to they can’t imagine adjusting or scrapping them.   They may have inadequate technology support so even when they do use technology, it never works properly and they throw in the towel.  They may believe that they don’t have time in the curriculum to add “one more thing”.  They may believe that they don’t have time in general to learn something new.  All of these issues need to be addressed, but at the heart of every teacher needs to live one thing.  A desire to learn.  Excellent teachers need to be constantly learning, and modeling that learning process to the students they teach.  They must be willing to adapt their lessons and teaching as the world changes to properly prepare the students they teach.  For effective school technology implimentation, administrators need to change the culture of the school.  They must nurture and encourage teachers as learners.  They must ensure that teachers have the proper support so that when they do learn to use a new piece of technology, it is working consistently.  I believe if administorators truly transformed the school into a rich learning environment for teachers and students, the technology use would naturally begin to fall into place.

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Moon in Google Earth

Posted by admin | Posted in Fun & Games, Geography, History, Interactive Whiteboard, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Virtual Field Trips | Posted on 20-07-2009

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What it is: Today is the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Mission.  I have been following the moon landing on We Choose the Moon.  This is an incredible site that has allowed me to re-live (for the first time) the Apollo 11 mission as if it were happening today.  In honor of this historic day, Google released Google Earth 5.0 complete with Moon view.  With Moon in Google Earth you and your students can take tours of landing sites narrated by Apollo astronauts, view 3-D models of landed spacecraft, zoom into 360* photos of astronauts footprints, and watch rare TV footage of the Apollo missions.

How to integrate Moon in Google Earth into the classroom: Now that the moon has made an appearance in Google Earth, your students can experience the moon and Apollo missions up close and personal.  Space, astronauts, Apollo missions, and the moon were the stuff of legends before the space race took off.  Moon in Google Earth brings back the excitement of the space race allowing students to explore and discover.  This is an excellent virtual field trip to take your students on during any space or moon unit.  Use an interactive whiteboard to discover as a class.  Students can take turns being moon tour guides.  Students could also explore independently keeping their discoveries in a space journal and reporting back to others what they discovered on their journey to the moon.

Tips: Google Earth is a download.  If you need IT to perform downloads for you, be sure that Google Earth makes it on your list of must haves for the school year.

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Moon in Google Earth in your classroom.Moon in Google Earth

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