As mentioned in my post entitled "Can I have some 'training' with that please...." my children's school invested in a class set of laptops and several Interactive Whiteboards late last year, and it was these new technological purchases which enabled a conversation between myself and the school's ICT teacher/co-ordinator around offering professional development (PD) or training and development (T&D) as it is called public schools in South Australia, to the staff at my children's Primary School.
This conversation has carried over into 2008 and now the ICT teacher/co-ordinator has asked me "a short description" of what I can offer to staff so it can be discussed further at a staff meeting.
As I originally started my professional life as a High School Teacher (a thousand years ago), and for the last 7 years, I have been training adult Vocational Education and Training (VET) students and staff, I would really appreciate any input into what PD/T&D Primary School teachers of 5-13 year old students would benefit from.
Here are some workshops which I've already proposed to offer:
Blogs - online journals and personal learning environments
Your students usually only present their writing to an audience of one - you - their teacher. How much different would their writing be if their audience included their peers, parents and family? How would your students' writing/learning improve if they were interacting and collaborating with peers from across the globe?
Blogs can be personal or group project journals, information/research repositories, creative and reflective writing spaces, portfolios of work. Blogs allow you to embed photos, videos and audio, as well as provide the option for others to 'comment' on your blog.
This hands on workshop will demonstrate how easy it is to set up and manage a blog; link to other useful 'teacher/professional resource' blogs, as well as how to manage a number of blogs at one time (through RSS).
Wikis - a collaborative whiteboard and personal website
Do your students do 'group work'? Would you like to create a class or personal website?
A Wiki, which is Hawaiian for 'quick' - is an easy to create webspace which allows anyone to edit, without having to understand html or coding. Wikis allow you to upload pictures and documents.
This hands on workshop will demonstrate how easy it is to set up and manage a wiki, upload photos and documents, create new pages and manage users.
Social Bookmarking - access your 'Favourites' from anywhere and share them with others
What do your 'Favourites' look like? Can you easily find previously saved bookmarks or do you remember why you saved others? Do you use more than one computer - so would being able to access your 'favourites' from any computer be useful?
Social bookmarking allows you to save your favourite websites under 'tags' or 'topics' - so you can search by 'topic' rather ramdomly by the title. Social Bookmarking also allows to you to share your bookmarks with others. Imagine the time saved if you could see all of your colleagues' numeracy and literacy bookmarks?
This hands on workshop will demonstrate how easy it is to set up and manage a social bookmarking account, as well as find and share favourites with other.
Of course I consulted Twitterdom on this topic - and here are some suggestions for other PD/T&D for Primary School Teachers:
@murcha - What about images, size, appropiate format etc and manipulation for online use - I'm reading this to be about photo re-sizing, cropping etc
@marlenemanto - Primary School teachers? How about digital storytelling...always popular and easy to get started.
@lindiop - flickr? especially show them http://www.flickr.com/group...
And Patrick Woessner has created an A to Z of relatively new, free e-learning/web 2.0 resources which would make great 'Show'n'Tell 2.0' sessions at your staff meetings for the rest of the year!
Why not try some of these with some Primary School teachers you know? What other useful PD/T&D e-learning workshops would you recommend?
Thanks to Tim Davies, Sue Waters and Lee Lefever for the great free online resources you have developed in these topics - and which I have referenced to. Long live Sharing Social Networks!!!