@VitaLearn Dynamic Landscapes Vlog Day 1

This past Monday (May 23, 2016) I had the opportunity to attend Dynamic Landscapes, our regional ed tech conference hosted by Vita-Learn…they even let me bring my camera!  I really enjoyed this conference and for me the timing couldn’t be better.  I heard a lot of my colleagues say that they wanted to go but this time of year is “difficult to leave school.”  I totally get that, and I also think that this time of year is the time that a boost of inspiration goes a loooooooooooong way.  That’s what happened for me. At this point in the year I find that I’m split between two worlds, this year finishing up and gearing  up for next year. The ideas, connections, collaborations and inspiration that I collected during Dynamic Landscapes helped me see some clear paths in both those worlds.
There will be a day two vlog as well.  I also hope to create some short 15-10 second videos that capture key components of the learning that was shared.  I sincerely enjoyed this day and nothing can capture the power of the connections, conversations and resources that were gathered.

It’s Incredible How Much Connectivity We Forget We Can Have

This whole week it seems like I’ve been immersed in connections…connections through technology, through face to face communication, emails, etc. Yet when it was time to do this week’s menu video and I wasn’t at school (I was at our fourth grade track meet which was amazing and I’ll share more about later) I couldn’t quite figure out how to do it…EVEN THOUGH I have about thirty connection options right in my pocket.  That’s when it really hit me how little of the access and connection technology we actually use, even though it’s right there with us everyday.  All those apps that sit idle, when we send an email instead of calling or video calling…all that.  Pretty powerful.  In the end, while not the slickest connection or menu video we were able to connect and get the message out there.

Truly Inspired By Our Students’ Visual and Vocal Art

This is our second concert and art night in two weeks and I have to say it has become clear that our scholars are very creative and amazing in so many ways.  Not only that, it’s clear we have some truly excellent educators as well.  I took photographs of the students’ work for the first part of this video and found myself looking intently at many of the pictures.  The colors, the thought, the design…it was really powerful.  I had the same experience as we’ve moved our concert outside.  I can’t quite describe the difference in experience of having our students singing outside versus in, but let me be clear…it’s an incredible difference and one that’s made an impact on many.

Biking in the drop off loop

It’s one of my favorite things…to look out of the office window and see students circling the drop off loop (sans cars of course), learning and practicing their biking skills.  Smiles, falls, successes, perseverance and fun.  It’s all there in one form or another and all an example of learning and practice.  We have a lot of different supports from the community in place to keep this experience up and biking.

Looking forward to @vitalearn Dynamic Landscapes #vted

Tomorrow starts Dynamic Landscapes 2016 in Burlington, Vermont. I’m excited to have a chance to be a part of such a great event.  Below are two of the presentations that I’ll be a part of.  I’ll also be vlogging my two day experience there, getting some great stories from educators and showcasing some of the great things that are possible for our scholars and educators!


Celebrating the Arts…And Taking a Risk

Last night we had a lot going on at school…but it was a lot of awesome!  We’ve always held an Art and Concert night to celebrate our young artists and musicians, but this year we wanted to change things up a bit.
Our art exhibits were spread throughout the hallways in our third and fourth grade wing…and to see this sea of colors and design was more powerful than can be shown by any picture or video, but let’s just say that it was breathtaking.  #thekimaucter helps our scholars see the world with artist’s eyes everyday…so amazing.
And our concert…well…here’s the story.  For years we’ve held this concert at the middle school in the gym because it was the only space large enough to accommodate the crowd.  Every year these concerts were amazing BUT the gym didn’t always serve us the best…hot, crowded…etc.  The music teacher, @chrisarthurvt, and I have been talking for years about hosting an outdoor concert…it is Vermont, afterall.  At first the logistics of the whole thing seemed a little overwhelming but we pushed through and I have to say…it was exceptional.  Words, video, pictures…they don’t do it justice, but just trust me…if you have the means, hearing student music outside…it’s the way to go.