I realize that I am way behind, once again, on updating my blog. I have been spending a tremendous amount of time in the lovely southeastern part of our state. It’s been so fun visiting with the media specialists and presenting PD workshops to the teachers of my region. Some of my time has been spent conducting video production workshops to students in the schools. That’s always a pleasurable bonus.
The Association for Middle Level Education/NMSA conference was held in Louisville this year. It was a different experience for me, because I was talking with teachers from all over the United States. We visited with so many educators that my head was spinning. It was exhilarating to work in such a crowded booth and to share in the excitement as we talked about our resources. As you know, many are available to everyone. Teachers from all over were amazed to have free access to so many Kentucky resources. I saw some of you, too, and that was the best part of all.
There have been other ventures that have been occupying my time. We’re developing a collection of video production professional development modules that will eventually find its home in PBS LearningMedia. This project has been exciting, and our own Brett Smith is working on these as I write. I believe it will be a very helpful resource for teachers who are implementing video production into their instructional activities. It’s such a powerful way students can connect with content across the curriculum. So, be watching for these to be released in fall 2012 (fingers are crossed).
Also, the sustainable gardening production and editing is underway. I can’t wait for it to be available. It’s going to be beautiful. The footage of teachers and students working in their school gardens while learning about science, math, and nutrition is amazing. This resource will be useful to intermediate and middle school classrooms across the curriculum. I have learned a lot. It’s always a powerful and spiritual experience to watch gardens transform through the seasons. The student involvement and excitement was the best part. 2011 was definitely a year of growth.
Remember when 2012 seemed so far away? I imagined we would be driving hovercrafts or riding on a maglev, as they do in other parts of our world, but I never imagined technology would be taking us to where we are today. Though it would be fun to visit schools on a maglev, I believe that the way education has embraced technology has made teaching and learning so meaningful, engaging, and exciting. I get a kick out of trying to predict the next new, big thing that will blow us all away, but it is getting more and more challenging for me to imagine. KET has been treading new ground with some remarkably innovative resources. I am sure you have been exploring some of these, and you may have even experienced one or more of our self-paced PD modules. This jump has been so rewarding for us, and we hope you are enjoying the products, too. I am including a comprehensive list of our resources in this post. I just know that as soon as I hit “Publish” there will be a new one to add.
Looking back on 2011, I am reminded that all of the activities I mentioned above make my job so meaningful. I learn something every time I enter a school, and am blessed to work with such wonderful teachers, students, and administrators. Even the drive through such beautiful country provides serenity (except when I meet a coal truck on a impossibly narrow, insanely curvy, and steeply sloped road). I must add that after having done this for over 12 years, my driving skills are now quite sharp, like those curves. And I can’t not mention that my colleagues are all amazingly talented. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my job!
I hope that as you reflect on your year, you, too, will find many blessings. As a brave, new year awaits, I wish you peace, happiness, rest, and good health this Holiday season and beyond.
Instructional Resources: STEM
Instructional Resources: Arts/Social Studies
Instructional Resources: World Languages
Professional Development: Self-Paced Modules
· Transforming Education in Kentucky
· Program Reviews: Purpose, Process, and Practice
· In Development: Operation Preparation
· In Development: Formative Assessment
· In Development: New to Kentucky (with the Education Professional Standards Board)
Professional Development: Resource Collections
Resources for WorkKeys and GED Preparation
Sampling of Other Online Resources
The following two examples are highly interactive and innovative STEM resources:
KET’s Virtual Physics Labs, designed originally for physics distance learning courses, are being collected into a new website for use by high school and college physics teachers across the country. The virtual apparatus is designed to simulate real lab apparatus and in most cases to extend it.
These instructional resources provide an example of KET’s extensive library of arts resources and electronic field trips:
KET’s award-winning professional development resources are available on CD-ROM, DVD, and/or online, and many were produced for national distribution:
· Raindrops to Rivers: Teaching Students about Nonpoint Water Pollution
Literacy Professional Development (produced in partnership with the Kentucky Department of Education):
· Literacy Strategies in Action: Resources for Primary Teachers available on CD-ROM
· Literacy Without Limits: Help for Struggling Students, Grade 4-12
Writing PD (produced for Annenberg Media):