Search This Blog

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Chris Lehmann - watch, read, listen for some inspiration

Chris Lehmann is the principal of the Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia, and was this year's closing keynote speaker at the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference.  Together with Scott McLeod, he has written a new book entitled, What School Leaders Need to Know About Digital Technologies and Social Media (not yet released).  The closing keynote speech is fantastic, and geared toward teaching with technology. However, Chris is quick to point out, even at a conference surrounded by tools and gadgets and cool stuff, that teaching is really all about the people and relationships, one of the reasons why I find his style so engaging. He talks at length about his school, SLA, which was designed with a "culture of care" in mind. GREAT stuff.  I've also linked to some other things he's done, and pasted his bio from the SLA website, just so you can get an idea of who he is. 

•    Closing Keynote at ISTE 2011 (about 30 minutes, fast forward to begin at 32:16 with a poetry slam by some of the students from SLA)

•    at TEDxPhilly (16:55)

•    at TEDxNYED (21:30)

•    Follow on Twitter:

•    His blog:

Principal: Chris Lehmann – –Chris is the founding principal of the Science Leadership Academy, a progressive science and technology high school in Philadelphia, PA. The Science Leadership Academy is an inquiry-driven, project-based, 1:1 laptop school that is considered to be one of the pioneers of the School 2.0 movement nationally and internationally. The school was recognized by Ladies Home Journal as one of the Ten Most Amazing Schools in the US, has been recognized as an Apple Distinguished School in 2009 and 2010 and has been written about in many publications including Edutopia Magazine, EdWeek and the Philadelphia Inquirer. Chris returned to his native Philadelphia after nine years as an English Teacher, Technology Coordinator, Girls Basketball Coach and Ultimate Frisbee coach at the Beacon School in New York City, one of the leading urban public schools for technology integration.

In June 2010, Chris was named as one of the "30 Most Influential People in EdTech" by Technology & Learning Magazine. In 2009, Chris was a honoree for the Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development's Outstanding Young Educator Award. Chris was named as one of "40 Under 40" by Philadelphia Business Journal in 2009. In 2006, the National School Board Association named Chris one of "20 to Watch" among American administrators. In 2001, Chris was honored by MOUSE as a Champion of Technology and Education for his work on building the portal at the Beacon School. Chris has written for such education publications as Principal Leadership Magazine, Learning and Leading with Technology Magazine, and the School Library Journal. Chris has spoken at conferences all over the world, including TEDxPhilly, TEDxNYED, the National Association of Secondary Schools Conference, the Building Learning Communities conference, the National Educational Computing Conference, the Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference, The Yahoo Cybercitizen Conference, the Innovative Learning Conference, The Council of Educational Facilities Planners Regional Conference, the K12-Online Conference, the International Conference on Technology and Education and at LinuxWorld, and he has worked with many schools and districts in the U.S. and England as a consultant. Chris received his B.A. in English Literature from the University of Pennsylvania and his M.A. in English Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Chris is the author of the education blog Practical Theory: and is father to Jakob and Theo.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Trends and Tools

This week is the annual ginormous ISTE conference in Philadelphia (International Society for Technology in Education), and while all the ed-tech people I usually follow are attending, they are publishing a great deal of information from the conference so I feel like I know what's going on without having to actually be there. It's pretty sweet.

We frequently get asked, what are the next big trends in educational technology? Here's one lovely summary from the folks at might not be ready to encourage your students to play World of Warcraft for Language Arts credit, as is mentioned here, but "gamification" is a big buzz word out there right now as educators look at how to harness the power of games for educational benefit.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

RSS Feeds and Why You Need to Use Them

Been trying to get this idea off the ground with this blog post for a unique take on why RSS feeds can be such a great tool for teachers (personally and professionally).  We'll do a workshop on Google Reader in late August and help you set up your feeds!

Kathy's basket
Scott McLeod on June 22, 2011, 9:09 AM

Kathy is a teacher. She has a basket.

Kathy puts all of her favorite things in her basket and takes it everywhere so that they're close at hand. Because she's a dedicated science teacher, she keeps her notebook of great teaching ideas in the basket. Whenever she needs a new inspiration, she pops open the notebook and takes a look. She has a video player in her basket, loaded with favorite science videos to show her students. She's got science articles and magazines and other things she wants to read in the basket too, along with some games and other teaching resources. She's even got in her basket the last few letters from her friend who teaches science in California and had shared a few tips for Kathy. the rest here:

Friday, June 17, 2011

Writing (sometimes publicly) to Learn

I recommend this blog for your RSS feed:

I shared Bud the Teacher with you during National Poetry Month, as he had a new writing prompt published every day that month and lots of folks submitted great poetry in the comments of his blog. He writes frequently about how the use of technology to publish student and teacher work has impacted him. This particular post today is great as it gets deeper into his own thinking about his thinking (metacognition, anyone?) and what it means to put your work out there for public consumption.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

MakeUseOf - FREE guides!

Something to perhaps take a look at over the summer, MakeUseOf provides free guides for lots of software (Photoshop, Garage Band), social networks (Twitter, Facebook) and other techno-geeky stuff (Idiot's Guide to Build Your Own PC).  Check it out!