Tuesday I lived up to my words. I created a time in my schedule to allow for Teacher Tinker Time. I blocked off three class periods(one for each grade level prep period) to allow for most of the staff to stop down to my room and PLAY!
I set up my Macbook with a Makey Makey connected to apples to play Halloween sounds.
I had three tables with Lego EV3 building kits
I had a table with four Rubik’s Cube
I had a table to make a trebuchet.
I had space to just chat!
I was lucky enough to have teachers give up their valuable prep time to test this out. One teacher brought in some beverage for everyone(thank you Mr. Uhde). Coffee will be there next time!
I left things wide open. I wanted to see how teachers would operate in this environment. 6th grade prep brought in about 6 teachers. We had some amazing discussion on topics of new literacies. One teacher started to build a robot. I think we are going to head up a teacher Sumo Bot competition. Another teacher was tinkering with Skype and figuring out how to make this work. It was a lot of fun. Many were fascinated by the Makey Makey and this gave me some ideas for future sessions.
8th grade brought in three teachers and after playing around with Makey Makey we just sat and had a really good chat about what exactly should we be teaching? How do we teach for a future unknown for some many levels. In the end it comes down to teachers getting themselves out of comfort zones so we can expect the same from our students.
7th grade was left empty.
So, what does this all mean? I know that I must continue to make this happen. I think this is such a valuable time that needs to be in schools for educators. Can I make it better? Absolutely. I think I need to provide a more specific titles to each session. I still want freedom and fun, but creativity needs constraints and I did not put any constraints into the first session.
Reflecting on Tuesday, here is where we are headed.
Session #2: Augment Reality Chaos!
Session #3: Teacher created newspaper with AR (this is going to be AWESOME!)
Session #4 – ? I will leave as a surprise but I have 10 sessions planned.
It was not perfect, but it was fun. Many new ideas were discussed. I learned myself. Anytime you try something new you know that you have to just go with it. Now that I have one under my belt I know what it will take to make it even better.
I loved it! I loved that teachers showed up and my goal will be to have a full classroom by the end of the year.