Grand Opening

Opening a new school is a lot of work.  Opening a new technology-focused school is exciting…but a lot of work.  Opening a new, technology-focused school that, in many ways, is still a construction zone can be more than a little hectic as well.  With all of the new developments and changes, I find myself busier than I have ever been before (and those that know me, know this is saying a lot).  I am fortunate to be a part of an amazing staff that has truly been baring these stresses equally.  Everyone has been putting in endless hours upon hours of planning, preparation, committee work, and much, much, much more. With ALPs, LRPs, IEPs, Progress Reports, an Open House, a BBQ/Open House, unpacking, organizing and reorganizing, and our Grand Opening all within the first 6 weeks of school, it’s a wonder that any teaching and learning has been occurring…but trust me, it most certainly has! I say this not to complain, but to marvel in all that been accomplished in this period of time.  As I left work to grab some dinner before our Grand Opening, I paused at the opening in the construction fence that allowed for an awesome view of our new school (that didn’t look like a construction zone – for the first time).  The sight forced me to smile so I paused and took a quick shot.  A little pride for our awesome school.

The New Ryerson

Livescribe Guest Post (copy)

Talking Tree of Thanks

Talking Tree of Thanks

I am honored to have been asked by the livescribe TLLP project team to guest blog about using the Livescribe pen with my special education class.  We just recently began to use the pen in our classroom, so it was important for students to have a simple activity to experiment with the function of the pen.  Motivation was extremely high to record and play back voices using this device.  We decided to create a “Talking Tree of Thanks” for our school’s Thanksgiving assembly.  Each leaf has a different message that can be heard just by touching the dot we drew on each one.  As word got out about our little project, teachers and students from other classes were stopping by to see how the pen works and to add a message of their own. For the most part, each student was successful with this activity.  One issue that students occasionally had involved touching the dot-paper when they were recording.  Some touched too lightly or not at all, which made playback difficult on some leaves.  During a parent night held last week, families had an opportunity to try out the pen and add a message of their own.  Feedback regarding this device was extremely positive.  Most of our friends think of the livescribe as a “magic pen” and we don’t argue!