Saturday, January 14, 2017

Tools of Engagement

A great site with information about 
instructional technologies 
and ways to enhance your skills

Discovered during a TLTG FridayLive webinar.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Ideas related to facilitating learning in a webinar environment

I have the wonderful opportunity of facilitating web workshops for Lexia Learning and in helping to facilitate learning for the TLT Group. Most recently The question I have been exploring of late is this. Why and how is facilitating learning different in a webinar environment versus in a face to face environment,  My first step in answering that question has been to read a book titled "Great Webinars: How to create interactive learning that is captivating, informative and fun"  by Cynthia Clay. I first read this book when I was working as a Faculty Development Specialist for EDMC.

Below are some of my notes and ideas from the book. This is not yet in any coherent order but what I will say is that reading this book has helped me generate ideas that I have already put into practice.

The ending
I have been disappointed in how I have ended webinars so I have made it a point to improve the ending, No matter how the time and expectations may fluctuate, my goal is to reserve 2-5 minutes for some sort of ending. Ideally I want to have time for a short reflection on next steps, a review of the session goals, thank you and the survey.

One idea that I have not tried yet is to use the white board in WebEx to capture the next steps ideas
generated at the end.

My colleague Susie Evans, shared this tip on March 17th. She has been setting an alarm to go off with 15 minutes until the end.  She gauges where things are at and may then give participants some options on how to spend the remaining time.

I have decided to use the phrase "web workshop" versus webinar. I think it implies a more interactive learning environment. The word webinar more reflects a passive environment.

One thing I would like to do more of is to encourage participants to tell their stories.

I would like to improve the type of open ended questions I ask. Such as "Does anyone have an example of a time..."

The beginning of a webinar involves some housekeeping activities and I plan to start calling it that. For example: getting participants logged into myLexia and TodaysMeet, being sure they have the handouts, talking about how we will communicate, introducing myself, talking about the survey at the end, etc. This is still a work in progress and does change given audience factors.

Pre webinar assignment
I do like the idea of providing a pre web workshop assignment but it would need to be very simple. I am thinking something like this for a launch: log into myLexia, find the training on demand videos, view one and answer one question.

I think we could do more related to a self assessment prior to a data coaching session. This would be fun to develop..

Getting to Know Participants
Getting to know participant names is something else I am working on. For a large group that is more challenging but for a small group, I have been using a bold marker and a large post it note and capturing names from the myLexia site and attaching the post it to the side of the computer screen. In cases of a large group I capture the name of a few key people only. Short video 
Getting to know participants

Ideas for handling slides with dense information
Instead of just presenting the slide related to research on at risk and usage, I have created a question
and asked the group what they think the result might be and then present the slide. The research data slide is very dense with information and asking the question first helps in focusing.

Slide Format
I have added an affective goal. So in addition to the overall goal of implementing Lexia with fidelity, I have added "Get excited about implementing Lexia." I have been thinking about adding a polling question where I ask the participants how excited are you to implement a Lexia. I am still working on this idea. Balancing the getting started tasks with audience technology comfort ability is an important considerate. The poll question could also be something very simple like asking yes or no about experience with Lexia.

You actually need more slides for a webinar and slides in general need more graphics and less words. With that in mind, I have modified the slide I had been using with the 5 keys to implementation fidelity and created 6 separate slides. I also refer participants to the training guide.

I want to develop a slide at the end where I summarize various post webinar support resources such as the Help desk, the training guide, training on demand videos, Twitter, lead is website, onsite experts.

Two of my webinar colleagues use a cursor that blinks when the control key is pressed. I plan to check it out.  Here is how you activate that function.
  • Go into your Computer Settings
  • Select Devices- then choose Mouse and Touchpad
  • Choose Additional Mouse Options
  • Go to the Pointer Options tab at the top
  • Click the box for "Show location of pointer when I press the CTRL key"

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Learning more about Twitter from Susan Beardon on TLTG FridayLive! 11/20/2015

Learning more about Twitter from Susan Beardon this week (November 20, 2015) with the TLT Group on FridayLive!

Prior to the webinar Penny Kuckkahn shared an interesting dialog that took place between her son and daughter regarding Twitter. This short interchange sums up polar views about Twitter. Twitter may not be for everyone. I need to decide if it is for me and if so, in what regard. Thanks for allowing me to share this Penny.

Lainie and I subscribe to a service which allows us to watch all National and International skating throughout the world live streamed.  As we watch we usually follow the hashtag on twitter for the competition.

Conversation between my 17 year old son and 14 year old daughter
Philip: What is Twitter?
Lainie:  It this thing that you can post your thoughts and ideas using less than 160 characters
Philip: Why would you do that?
Lainie:  To let people know your thoughts and ideas
Philip:  That's just dumb
Lainie:  No it's not.  I can see what the coaches I have worked with think about the skater I am watching
Philip:  My first tweet - "Twitter just another form of gossip"
          My last tweet "So long Twitter I do not even need 160 characters"

Below is a mind map of my notes from the webinar.  Link to the mind map.
Also below is the transcript of the FridayLive! Twitter "conversation."

Friday, October 23, 2015

Lexia Core5 and MyLexia Review - Spirit Lake Elementary School

Lexia Core 5 and MyLexia Review

Below are a few review activities to complete in preparation for the up-coming Lexia Data Coaching event.

___1. Test your understanding. Look for the answers in the Core5 Teacher Training Guide or flip the card for the answer.

___2. Listen to video Part 3 - Monitor Student Progress and Usage
Video link:

___3. Complete the following Hands On Activity
  1. REVIEW  the “ Data to Inform Instruction” section of yourCore5 Teacher Training Guide, pg. 6 & 7.
  2. LOGIN  to the class demonstration myLexia site ( with these credentials:
    email =
    password = success
You will be in the Reading tab in myLexia
  1. SELECT Johnson 2
  2. FIND  answers to the following questions.
    1. How many students need instruction?
    2. How many students have a High Priority for instruction?
    3. What does the Green icon next to Sherilyn’s name indicate?
    4. What Lexia Lesson does Jossie Casas need?
    5. How many students have not met their Lexia goal for minutes this week?
    6. Who earned a certificate today?
    7. What percent of the class is working on 2nd grade material?
    8. How many minutes did it take Jayson Valdes to complete the Auto Placement?
    9. At what level did Kami auto place?
    10. How many units does Dian have to reach benchmark?
    11. Who grew from a 18% chance of meeting benchmark to a 99% chance of meeting benchmark in just four months?
    12. You would like to print a Skills Report for all the students in your class. How could you do that?
    13. For how many weeks did at least 75% of your students meet their Lexia usage goals?
___4. Please post any questions here

See you soon!

Beth Dailey
Lexia Facilitator

Monday, May 11, 2015

Brain Rules Exploration Activity in Adobe Connect

The TLT Group hosted a book discussion focusing on Dr. John Medina's book "Brain Rules." Steve Gilbert, Penny Kuckkahn and I developed the following activity in our attempt to help people connect to the book and model one of the Brain Rules, in this case #12, Exploration.  The activity took place in Adobe Connect.

We asked participants to chose one Brain Rule and then take 5 minutes to explore Dr Medina's website or any other resource. After reviewing material on the Brain Rule, identify one app or activity that connects with the Brain Rule in some way. We set up a new chat pod in a new layout for participants to post their contribution.
Below is a picture of the AC layout used.

After the activity we asked for feedback. In general participants liked the activity and the array of resources that were shared. They suggested we use music during the 5 minute exploration and no conversation. They liked the minute reminders we put in the chat. All in all it was a great success. This link will take you to a summary of the resources shared during the activity. This was a small group of 16 participants.

The image below illustrates the ideas offered by Brain Rule.  It is interesting to see the focus on Memory and Exercise.  Stress and Vision had the next highest votes.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Todoist - cloud-based task and project-management

I have been experimenting with Todoist to help me manage my tasks for the day.  I like that you can create your own projects and assign tasks to those projects. One of the things I would like to do with this project feature is to create a project that represents the breakthrough goal I am working on.  I think Todoist will help me see what kind of progress I am making toward this goal, help me keep the goal front and center.

I also like that you can collaborate on projects using Todoist. All people involved in the project must create an account. Once added to a project all people involved can add, assign, and modify tasks. Creating an account  is free.

Below is a short "How To" video.