Great American Teach In

On May 10 the Great American Teach In was celebrated. Mrs. Kokan took the opportunity to give her students a voice on the following issues. This activity did promote a lot of discussion which isn't all evident in this outline.
  • Why do you value education?
  • What skills do you need to excel in any job?
  • How can schools better prepare you for the future?

Here are several of the major points they made ( which should promote some discussion on the part of teachers and administration on how we can make our school better):

  • Block scheduling should be continued; with hybrid opportunities
  • Offer some courses all year round
  • Offer online summer courses
  • Offer year round school with time off in December, April and July
  • Make Period E a study hall
  • Start school later in the morning
  • Add an extra year of school
  • Offer more online course opportunities
  • Require teachers to utilize online tools like Google Apps
  • Initiate a one-to-one opportunity for students
  • Require a class that teaches personal finance
  • AP classes should be offered every year, not every other; more AP courses offered
  • Online opportunity to continue World Languages during the summer
  • Love the new "atmosphere"
Extra-curricular Activities:
  • require students to participate in an activity to graduate
  • offer some after school programs (i.e. photography, journalism)
How students learn:
  • specialize in the way students learn by categorizing by auditory, visual, or kinesthetic
  • relate everyday life to what is learned in class
  • expand diversity in learning styles
  • separate students who are willing to learn from those who are not
  • if work is not completed, require them to stay after school to complete it
Social dynamics:
  • more student recognitions
  • apply the rules equally
  • reward all students who improve grades
  • need different alternative to standardized testing; not all students have the same knowledge capacity
  • tests should address academic levels, i.e. honors, college prep, etc.
  • Have greater consequences
  • Hold students accountable for their actions - every time!

NICE JOB Mrs. K and students!


Student Projects

Check out the literary work done by ELCO students at The Scribe. A link can be found on the high school web page. Students original writings will be highlighted here.

Recently the English I class taught by Mr. Bickel and Technology Exploration and volunteer students coordibnated by Mrs. Noll and Mrs. DelCollo, submitted 22 new veteran interviews to the Library of Congress. The project included students working in pairs to interview local veterans
to capture their experiences while serving our country. More details can be found at ELCO's VHP wiki.

French III students are working diligently with the Gifted student program at the Intermediate School. They get to be the teacher and mentor for these elementary students as they teach them the basics of the French language. Every Friday is spent corrected work submitted by the IS students via GoogleApps. Looking forward to the closing party activity.

Many students are now prepping for the annual art show. Technology Exploration students will be creating QR codes that will display at all senior portfolio tables. These QR codes can be read by a smartphone and will provide biographical information on the student artist. The TE students are also going to create a "piece of art" using a variety of QR codes.

Exciting stuff still happening...


Regional Computer Fair Results

Once again our ELCO technology students did an excellent job at the regional level. The following students placed as indicated below. AND, the four students who took first place will move on to the state competition at Dickinson College on May 24.

Informational Web Design First Paige Sweigart
Second Steve Kahler

Curriculum-based Web Design First Dalton Spatz
Second Samantha Shimp
Third Matt Bishop

Desktop Publishing First Adam Moyer
Third Gabrielle Troutman

Multimedia First Brooklynn Nell
Second Gage Kushner

Logo Second Adam Moyer


PA Computer Fair

CONGRATULATIONS to a group of hard-working students who recently displayed their projects to be considered for the IU13 regional competition. Students were allowed to submit projects in any category based on parameters set by the state.

The projects that finished in the top three places will move on to the regional competition to be held April 21 at the IU in Lancaster.

Curriculum-based Web Design:
1 - Samantha Shimp
2 - Matt Bishop
3 - Dalton Spatz

Information-based Web Design:
1 - Steve Kahler
2 - Paige Swiegart
3 - Shawn Howard

Text-based Desktop Publishing
1 - Adam Moyer
2 - Gabby Troutman
3 - Rebekah Hartman

1 - Chris Nedeau
2 - Chris Snyder

Graphic Design
1 - Alexander Regnell
2 - Chris Nedeau
3 - Tori Young

1 - Gage Kushner
2 - Brooklynn Nell

Computer Logo
1 - Adam Moyer
2 - Shawn Howard
3 - Chris Snyder
Honorable Mention - Paige Sweigart


October 6, 2010

Let's get you caught up to date on what has been happening at the HS. First, on Wed., Sept 29 Mr Jon Bickel was invited to attend a private celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Veterans History Project. I had the pleasure of joining Jon as his guest. It was a very exciting experience in that Jon and I both did some crucial networking with other people involved in this program from across the nation. It will be doing this project again with students during the second semester. Language Arts teachers have been utilizing our new GoogleApps domain with students. This enables them to seemlessly share documents, collaborate between peers, and accept assignments without worrying about "the dog eating their homework." The iCal is being used for teachers to reserve use of laptop carts and the computer lab as well as space in the library. Teachers can easily review the calendars for availability before requesting a time slot.

Next week I will have the opportunity to visit what I fondly refer to as "the Mothership" in Cuperinto, CA. Yes, I am going to Apple headquarters with a group of tech coordinators from across IU13. We will spend two days evaluating, discussing, and trying to develop plans for how technology should impact our students. Will post when I return!


September 8, 2010

The first week has come and gone and classes are really kicking into high gear with using technology. Mr. Miller and Mrs. Velazquez had students creating wiki projects. The Spanish students got to create their own avatar to add to their wiki. Several Language Arts teachers have been starting with My Access, MindPlay, and GoogleDocs to engage their students in review activities.

Techie Tuesday is back in full force. Staff received training on using GoogleApps which will make it easy to share documents with students. Unfortunately, I forgot the treats so I will need to make up for that at the next TT gathering!


August 25, 2010

We are back in session...the start of another year.
This year the initiative will be to get all teachers to have an active online presence. This will allow them to keep their students (and parents) involved in the classroom. Tomorrow during inservice training teachers will view a variety of options they can use to accomplish this goal. Colleagues will demo what they have used in the past --wikis, websites, blackboard, etc. Staff members will then have time to create their own by getting started posting the basic items.


August 2 - Let's Get Ready

Where has the summer gone? Just got back from a great week with student leaders from across the state. What an inspiration to get me back into the groove. Now it is time to get equipment, project ideas, etc in place to start off the school year. Looking forward to developing some great projects with the staff this year!


May 11 - Last Hurrah!

It is May and we are winding down the school year. This week was highlighted with the annual Bungie Barbie project. Probability & Statistics students develop a regression line to determine how many rubber bands it will take for their favorite doll to take a safe bungie dive off the top of the stadium bleachers. They test it first in the classroom, then in a stairwell and lastly in the stadium. I am happy to report that only "Britney" Barbie broke her neck. But she is resting comfortably and recuperating quickly. The students will now take the trial data, final jump figures, video footage of practices and the final jump and create an online presentation to share what they learned from this precarious activity. Final projects will be posted next week. Eastern Civ classes created an online timeline (Russia_history) of significant events that occurred in Russia over the past few centuries. What a great way to learn about another culture by reading and deciding what they deemed as significant. Interesting in that several looked for events that they had heard their parents talk about. Wow, they were actually listening to their parents???

Art students are prepping for the annual district art show next Tuesday. A computer graphic design contest and a photography contest will be a main feature again this year. Also, technology students will be displaying the competition pieces they created for the PA Computer Fair. And, speaking of that, four students qualified to compete at the state competition on May 25. They qualified in desktop publishing, web design - curriculum-based, web design information-based, and multimedia.

Gotta go, more projects to assist with! Talk to you next week!


May 4, 2010 - Why Am I Here?

Okay, so I am sitting at the PaTTan building in Harrisburg waiting for a Digital Education workshop and am observing the other people in this room. Can't quite figure out the mix and am hoping this turns out to be what it was advertised to be. I am excited about learning what funding is available to promote more use of online textbooks, one-to-one learning, and student lessons for digital learning.

Meanwhile, back at school, things have been very busy. Mr Soto's Eastern Civilization class is working on Google Presentations to compare and contrast other countries with the US; and his Modern Studies class is working on digital timelines that will share key events in history from 1945 to present. The Spanish V kids have been busy again, after doing an excellent Spanish newsletter, they are now collaborating with the Child Development class and Technology Exploration class on writing, illustrating, and printing a Spanish/English children's storybook. It is ready for proofreading and printing, so I am excited about seeing the final print! Mr. Gerberich's class is working on iTouch data analysis projects, freshman English classes are working on global warming debates which was teleconferenced with other classes. So, there is a lot happening, far more than I could ever list here.

Okay, so let the meeting begin...



Okay, I promise to try to do better the next few months to post current info here. Amy & I are at the state tech conference learning new stuff!! So, GET ready for some AWESOME workshops. We have decided to hold TECHIE TUESDAYS during March. Please attend to learn some great ideas of how to engage your students and maybe you too!!! AND there are PRIZES!!! (yes, I believe in bribery)

So here we go,
All workshops will be held the first 30 min of each class period in my office:

EverNote - Tues. March 2
Quick Cool Tools to Use - Tues., March 9


PA Computer Fair

PA Computer Fair Results

On Tuesday, March 31, 2009 several high school students participated in the annual regional competition. There are eight different categories for students to submit projects. This year the following students presented projects:

Graphic Design - First Place: Adam Moyer
Graphic Design - Kyle Wenger
Graphic Design - Matt Logan
Logo - First Place: Kyle Irwin
Logo - Second Place: Aleks Molnar
Logo - Kyle Wenger
Multimedia - Second Place: Kyle Irwin
Multimedia - Zach Lesher
Text-Based Desktop Publishing - Second Place: Matt Logan
Text-Based Desktop Publishing - Third Place: Kyra Findley
Text-Based Desktop Publishing - Megan Milburn
Information-Based Web Design - First Place: Aleks Molnar
Information-Based Web Design - Second Place: Nick Kline
Curriculum-Based Web Design - First Place: Matt Logan
Programming - Marshall Watson
Digital Movie - Kim Wagner

Adam Moyer, Kyle Irwin, Aleks Molnar, and Matt Logan will compete on May 19 at the state level. This competition is held at Dickinson College.


21st Century Articles

Here are some great resources to learn more about the skills are students will need to be successful in the workforce.
Download file "21st Century Workplace_ Skills for Success.pdf"
Download file "Characteristics of a 21st Century Classroom.pdf"
Download file "Engage Me or Enrage Me.pdf"


21st Century Education

With a tech-savvy economy, educators need to practice teaching that encourages adaptability, self-direction, people skills and accountability. Teaching in the 21st Century will require purposeful instruction in these specific areas as teachers strive to offer meaningful and relevant educational experiences for all students.