Tag Archives: MACUL10

Videoconferencing with India

Cross-blogged with the Official MACUL Conference Blog.

This morning I had a nice turn out for my session on Instructional Strategies That Work with Videoconferencing: Global Interactive Collaborations. The main feature of our session was a connection to students in India who shared information and pictures about the famous temple in their town. I thought you all might enjoy some of the pictures from the students’ presentations and the interaction. The group had some excellent questions for the students. I had them do a KWL before the connection so we’d get higher quality questions. We also talked about Marzano’s strategies and how to use them to increase interactive in videoconferencing; and talked about logistics of videoconferencing and other resources.


Monster Match with Roxanne Glaser

Cross-blogged with the Official MACUL Conference Blog.

Last session of Thursday, and we’re interacting with Roxanne Glaser from Whirlidurb, telling us about the Monster Match videoconference project format.

It’s a matching project. Classes make monsters and describe them, send the descriptions to each other; make each other’s monsters; and then VC to see how well they match.

Roxanne started by having all the participants work together to draw a monster and write descriptions.

Participants drawing monsters.

Two of the session participants try to match Roxanne’s descriptions.


Roxanne shows her drawing from the directions from two of the participants; leading a discussion of similarities and differences.

Finally, Roxanne had us watch a video of a Monster Match connection with 3rd grade students; and play eye spy – look for best practice, collaboration and 21st century skills, and curriculum skills.

There are several iterations of this project that have been posted on CAPspace, which is a great place to find partners for these types of videoconference projects.

Be sure to read Roxanne’s write-up and resources too!

Exploring Videoconferencing Options

Cross-blogged with the Official MACUL Conference Blog.

Yesterday Danielle Letter (TWICE Prez-Elect) and I led a SIGTC workshop together. We explored a little collection of different videoconferencing options. The group was especially interested in:

  • DimDim for a free AdobeConnect-like product
  • Polycom CMA for meetings, professional development; we were all inspired by the vision of Saginaw ISD (guest speakers Rod Rock and Aaron Schippert)
  • Vidyo was very exciting and everyone was jazzed to talk to Craig in Alaska
  • I was excited to hear Aaron Schippert praise the $20 Hercules web cam. Must try it out myself!

Wiki Resources
Instead of a PowerPoint presentation, we made a wiki, and kept adding to it throughout the workshop. Check it out here.

REMC Bid Buy
Don’t forget, also, that there are several deeply discounted videoconferencing systems on the REMC Bid Buy.

Look at the videoconferencing section for speakerphones for Skype, and Polycom QDX and HDX systems ranging from $3600 to $8000. I heard there was a LifeSize unit on the REMC Bid Buy too, but it’s not on the website right now. Maybe it will be added soon.

Just a few more resources for you if you are considering videoconferencing for your school/district.

Do L.A.P.'s for Michigan!

Cross-blogged with the Official MACUL Conference Blog.

Blogging the first videoconferencing session in the TWICE room. Arnie Comer is presenting; and we are videoconferencing with Eagle Lake Elementary in Edwardsburg, MI and Great Oaks Elementary in the Anchor Bay district.

The session is about LAPS: LAPS focuses on selected state parks of Michigan, and each class presents part of the lesson. Macomb ISD offers this program in conjunction with Edco Publishing to statewide schools. Read more here.

February covers Waterloo State Park, and these two classes we’re connected to – are sharing their classroom presentation to us.

Eagle Lake presented first – they told us about the petosky stones and other stones with a venn diagram.

Great Oaks students presented to us about paleontology and the study of bones. Their presentation included flashing lights to travel back in time. Very cute, students were the dinosaurs back in time.

Afterwards, the audience asked the teachers and students questions.

  • How long did you take to prepare? About three class periods.
  • What materials do you use to prepare? The LAPS materials and other online and print materials.
  • What do the students enjoy best about participating in LAPS? We like everything about it. It’s fun to do. I like it because we work together to learn and we get to teach other people about what we learned.

After we disconnected, Arnie told us more about what each session includes:

  • Class introductions
  • Video of the state park
  • Classroom presents
  • Drawing lesson
  • Goodbyes

The materials for LAPS are all on the Macomb ISD Blackboard site. The program is open to all students; free; funded by Edco and Macomb ISD.

Here are some pictures from the session:


Before the session started, a view of the two presenting classes and the PPT set up, etc.


Anchor Bay kids doing a cool skit.


Another shot of the skit….

Thanks Arnie for a great presentation!

Don’t forget to fit a TWICE session into your MACUL conference. We’re in Gallery Overlook G and page 14 in your conference booklet has an overview of all the TWICE sessions!

MACUL's Phenomenal Support of Videoconferencing

Cross-blogged with the Official MACUL Conference Blog.

Today as I was riding up to the 2010 MACUL Conference, I was thinking how lucky we are in Michigan to have consistent support for the TWICE videoconferencing sessions at our ed tech conference, year after year after year…

Sometimes I listen to VC buddies in other states and I can’t think of very many (any?) that consistently and annually plan to have a videoconference session at every single breakout time slot during the conference.

So this is a thank you from a long time TWICE board member, and videoconferencing fan, who loves to see this particular technology supported and promoted every year. Thank you MACUL!! And thank you to the MACUL support staff and volunteers who sometimes stand on their heads to make VC work on the conference network!

A MACUL Conference Success Story

Selection from Read Around the Planet Image Gallery

A selection from the Read Around the Planet photo gallery.

Sometimes it’s nice to know the results of the conference. And once in a while, it even gets in the paper! Here’s a story from Owosso, MI:

  • Computer teacher attends MACUL conference.
  • Stops by the TWICE room, learns about videoconferencing and CAPspace (TWICE’s social networking site for videoconferencing).
  • Gets access to videoconferencing (Polycom PVX)
  • Signs up for Read Around the Planet
  • Luckily gets one of the 13 (out of 1950) UK partners
  • Gets written up in the paper.

And it all started at the MACUL conference!

Cool, huh?!

If you’re at MACUL this week, don’t forget to stop by the TWICE room for a videoconference session! Gallery Overlook G!

TWICE Videoconference Sessions @ MACUL

(Note: this is the beginning of cross blogging about videoconferencing at the MACUL 2010 conference in Grand Rapids.)

Read Around the Planet 2010 picture from Flickr
Read Around the Planet 2010 picture from Flickr

Don’t forget to plan to check out at least one session in the TWICE room @ MACUL this year! TWICE, Two Way Interactive Connections in Education, is Michigan’s K12 videoconference organization.

TWICE runs events such as Read Around the Planet, which officially ended March 5). Here’s a sample of what you can experience in Gallery Overlook G.

Thursday Sessions

10:00 am: LAPS the Distance Learning Way
Presenter: Arnie Comer
Remember LAPS? Learn From the Past, Appreciate the Present, Preserve our Outdoor Heritage. This curriculum, developed by EDCO Publishing from a grant from the Department of Natural Resources is now available to 3rd and 4th grade classrooms (or whichever grade level you teach Michigan studies) throughout the state of Michigan. Come see LAPS in action as we connect to two of our classrooms and find out how you can become involved next school year in LAPS the Distance Learning Way!

1:00 pm: Guess Who
Presenter: Danielle Letter
Are you looking for a highly interactive way to integrate technology with art and writing? Guess Who? is for you! Join us and some creative students for a live demonstration. Participate and collaborate with students from Atkins School, and see a demonstration of one way Adobe Connect is being utilized.

2:30 pm: Courtroom to Classroom… Civic Lessons Live from the Courthouse
Presenter: Terry Harrington

Learn how St. Clair County community leaders use videoconferencing technology to reach students. We will connect live with 72nd District Court Judge Cynthia Platzer and she will share her story of connecting courtroom to classroom

4:00 pm: Monster Match: A Descriptive Writing Collaboration
Presenter: Roxanne Glaser
Learn about a unique, collaborative, videoconference project. Two classrooms pair up and create a monster. Each class writes a description of their monster. Each class recreates the other class’ monster and then, via videoconference, they compare the monsters. Students improve descriptive writing skills, use math terms, and practice following directions.
Here’s a couple pictures for a taste:

Friday Sessions

8:30 am: Instructional Strategies That Work with Videoconferencing: Interactive Global Collaborations
Presenter: Janine Lim
Integrate the McREL and Marzano research on classroom instruction that works with your curriculum videoconferencing. Improve the learning quality and interactivity in your collaborative videoconference projects, whether you’re using room or desktop videoconferencing. During the session, we will connect to India for a taste of global videoconferencing.

10:00 am: Videoconferencing and Students with Special Needs
Presenter: Greg Marten
Videoconferencing opens doors for all students. This session will demonstrate some of the many ways interactive video connections can benefit students with special needs. Live video connections to students in classrooms will be part of the presentation. Facilitators will also show CAPspace, an online database where educators can find partner-classes.

Laurie Keller answering student questions in a TWICE ASK program.
Laurie Keller answering student questions in a TWICE ASK program.

11:30 am: ASK the Author with Laurie Keller
Presenter: Sue Porter and Laurie Keller
ASK (Author Specialist Knowledge) are special author interview videoconferences. Author Laurie Keller will demonstrate this process live as we connect to a classroom of students and will give the author’s perspective on the value of this program. Come meet Laurie Keller and bring some questions of your own!

As you can see, we have a great group of interesting sessions featuring videoconferencing. Hope you can stop by!