Tuesday, February 5, 2013

2013...a year of change...

So if 2012 was a year of excitement and rejuvenation...2013 will be even better. Both on a personal and professional level. But this blog isn't about the personal stuff...more about the "professional"! This post is about the goals that I will be striving for in 2013.

My goals for 2013 are and these are in no particular order:

  • Establish a class blog
    • Secret project this one for various reasons...I'll elaborate on this further when I can. Think along the lines of students discovering what's happening in the world around them and writing about it.
  • Establish and support a student ICT technical support program
    • This one is happening at my school, where we have just begun the implementation of a 1:1 notebook program. The plan is to have a small student tech group where they support their teachers and peers, in the use of ICT in their classrooms.
  • Organise myself better
    • Planning of lessons, balancing my personal and professional life more effectively - the plan is to do more work at school during regular hours and less at home. Also, with more time on my hands, means more time for experimenting with ICT and other things.

      That's completely reasonable right?
  • Support my students better with the use of ICT
    • Through experimentation and improved organisation, I'm hoping that I can introduce more innovative teaching methods for my students so as to improve their learning experience. I plan on using new and existing Web 2.0 tools to do this. Let's see how this goes...
  • Write blog posts on a more regular basis
    • I don't think 14 posts in 6 months was good enough even though now looking at it, its around one every 2 weeks, which really isn't so bad. Let's see how we go though as this year already seems to be rocketing by...and the year seemingly more full on. I have no idea how I coped in my first year...but we all notice these things...apparently a sign of getting older I'm told.
  • Present more 
    • Last year with the encouragement of some colleagues, I presented at my school on a Professional Development day, and then followed up with a presentation at #TMGeelong. While they were nerve wracking experiences, I decided late last year that in 2013 I would "hit the conference circuit" as one of my colleagues had worded it. So for the time being, I'm presenting at #ICTEV13 in May, and I'm sure a TeachMeet or two will be another avenue.

      Professional Development days are also something I'll be doing at school...my school offers internal PD days for staff to run and others to sign up for. They called for some new blood and I thought why not. While not the newest technology, I'll be offering PD in the way of Google applications, such as Drive and Sites.
So that's me in 2013...or so I hope. They're lofty expectations and goals however I don't think that they're unachievable. I think a couple of quotes would be fitting here

I look to the future because that is where I am going to spend the rest of my life.
George Burns

It always seems impossible until it's done
Nelson Mandela

So until next time...May the Tech Be With You

Jimmy V

2012...the year that was...

So it's been a while since I posted on here. I won't say that I had better things to do than blog about what it is I blog about here, however I will say that blogging was never far from the mind - most of the time....

Anyway, so where did 2012 go?

2012 was a year of new beginnings for me. Teaching new subjects (again), associate Head of Technology at my school (in my 2nd year of teaching)...and once I'd been to the #ICTEV2012 conference, it was like a rebirth in terms of my life in eLearning and education.

As I've written previously, I felt rejuvenated and refreshed, and had a buzz that seemingly didn't go away for days. This blog was then started in the days afterwards after a conversation with @_TarrynKennedy, and I'd decided that my then "dormant" Twitter account (@jimmygunner) needed to be given a 2nd chance. At #ICTEV2012, I remember seeing the follower count at around 70 after being on there for ...in 6 months, I've increased that by 10 fold and have met & contributed to discussions with educators around the world. It's definitely been an eye opening experience.

The blog had a few posts last year and I remember saying that I was going to blog weekly over the school holidays...that didn't happen. I then said I'd blog before the start of the school year..that didn't happen. Only because I was helping everyone else be ready for day one, when I probably wasn't ready myself...big mistake. No excuses this year. More regular updates this year...PROMISE!

Anyway to look back some of the "projects" I wrote about and never followed up on:
  • Class App for my Maths class
    • Never got to implementation and the kids weren't happy. The app was "fully" developed and ready to go. The kids knew I was looking at making them an app but they weren't happy when the project "couldn't go ahead because there was no clear benefit to them" (for some of those looking at the project from the outside) and the fact that "the school rules aren't meant to deal with this sort of thing...so you might get into hot water; best not implement that" or something along those lines...
  • QR Codes
    • Was told there was no official support for this initiative as our students didn't have laptops at the time, and the school rules don't allow for mobile phones to be out in the classroom.
  • Presenting
    • First eLearning/Tech presentation to my peers at school and also my first external tech/eLearning tool presentation happened this year. I won't say they were great successes but more like toes into the cold ocean...but I did enjoy the sessions. Thanks to @_TarrynKennedy for the help :)
Well that was my educational life in 2012...and it was an awesome year personally as well. But we won't go into that. Thankyou to the following people who were an amazing support and sounding board:

Finally I would like to thank my amazingly supportive girlfriend, Jess, who without her support, I think I would have cracked under the anxiety/stress/buzz of my year. While she was sometimes frustrated and annoyed by all my tech talk, she supported and heard me rave & rant about frustrations at work and elsewhere. She is literally "the best, Jerry, the best"! 

I'm looking forward to 2013 and I'll be writing on this in the coming hours :)

Until next time (which won't be too far away...) May the Tech Be with You

Jimmy V