The First Annual(?) PCHS Technology Smackdown

The Set-Up
This past summer the teachers at PCHS was given the opportunity to partake in various technology centered staff development opportunities. Meg Ormiston came to Paris (something she braggs about for some reason…)and spent five wonderful days showing the staff a lot of web 2.0 tools, and best of all she gave them time to talk about them, work with them, and figure out how to integrate them into classes. We also we able to invite Nancy Brachbill and Shannon Smith of RecessTek to come to PCHS for four days right before school started. They helped teachers learn how to make their interactive white boards come alive (at the high school level…even!) as well as shared their expertise on using web based tools to enhance classroom instruction and bolster student learning and achievement.

So Why a Smackdown?
Our cooperative school begins each year with several half-day inservices and I wanted to be able to showcase what our teachers had learned to do. I had heard about various technology smackdowns taking place at various conferences, and even though I had never been to one, I thought I would try to create one using the expertise of our teachers. I created a Google Form to sign up.  I was pleased to have 15 (or about 40% of the teachers sign up!)  I set one afternoon aside for them to do their demonstrations.  The staff seemed to be very engaged, if fact, several teachers started a backchannel on twitter to discuss what was going on.  As we approached the end of the time allowed, about five teachers had not had the chance to present yet.  I agreed to let them extend the “smackdown” into the next day.  The following day when we were finished, we released staff to go and visit the presenters to talk about items of interest in more depth.  In my opinion, a very useful two days!  I am collecting the opinion of my staff and you can see the results here.

3 thoughts on “The First Annual(?) PCHS Technology Smackdown

  1. Hi everyone!
    I followed your Twitter post, and there you are bragging about me coming to Paris! I had a great week with your teachers there, you have some VERY talented teachers. Glad to hear the staff is putting things into action right away.

    I hope I can keep up with your professional learning community as the new learning moves to the classroom. This sounds like excellent professional develop taking ideas and translating them to practice. Serving as the instructional leader Dave, great modeling!

    Good use of the many digital tools!

  2. Well, I've blogged about how great I thought the days were…and tweeted about it, too! I have such a new appreciation of the people with whom I work!

    And the new phrase that guides my life…"What Would Gary Doughan Do?".

  3. I really enjoyed this inservice. I learned so much and discovered things I never knew existed. The fact that I could take these new ideas not only into my classroom, but also home to my daughter who then took them to her teachers at her school was fantastic! I hope we have a lot more of these to come!

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