Summer Professional Development

Clif Mims has some great ideas and I’m glad he’s a part of my PLN.  Today he has challenged those of us who follow him to set some professional development goals for the summer.  Here’s the meme that he started:


Summer can be a great time for professional development. It is an opportunity to learn more about a topic, read a particular work or the works of a particular author, beef up an existing unit of instruction, advance one’s technical skills, work on that advanced degree or certification, pick up a new hobby, and finish many of the other items on our ever-growing To Do Lists. Let’s make Summer 2010 a time when we actually get to accomplish a few of those things and enjoy the thrill of marking them off our lists.

The Rules

NOTE: You do NOT have to wait to be tagged to participate in this meme.

  1. Pick 1-3 professional development goals and commit to achieving them this summer.
  2. For the purposes of this activity the end of summer will be Labor Day (09/06/2010).
  3. Post the above directions along with your 1-3 goals on your blog.
  4. Link back/trackback to
  5. Use the following tag/ keyword/ category on your post: pdmeme2010.
  6. Tag 5 or more bloggers to participate in the meme.
  7. Achieve your goals and “develop professionally.”
  8. Commit to sharing your results on your blog during early or mid-September.

My Goals

  1. Learn more about facilitating online courses
  2. Get aquainted with PD in Second Life using software version 2.0 and attend 4 sessions using that medium
  3. Design an action research project for the next school year.

I Tag…

Melissa Warren

Deloris Eure-Nutt

Nancy Butler

Kristy Taxson

Jae Trewartha

Al Beamon

Brian McKee

Mid Year Check-Up

My thanks to Christine Southard who shared this mid-year check-up via plurk.  Christine is a fellow DEN Star in my Personal Learning Network (PLN).  For those of you who don’t know, the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is the largest international professional organization dedicated to improving the educational success of individuals with disabilities and/or gifts and talents. I maintained my membership in the CEC while I worked in educational diagnostics when I lived in New York. 

The CEC maitains a blog for first year teachers, and while I would like to direct this post to the many new teachers that I am working with, the information is truly applicable to all.  Their recent post “Your Mid-year Check-Up” includes some questions that you might want to consider.  Now is certainly a great time to assess the physical, academic, and social environments in your classroom.  It is also a good time to take stock of how you are coping with what life looks like right now.  Sometimes we need to make changes mid-year to avoid burnout.

Virtual Owl Pellet Dissection

This is primarily for third and fourth grade teachers.  While studying the food chain, you might dissect an owl pellet with your students virtually.  Those with an MCPS system or a Promethean Board could do whole group instruction in the class.  You also could decide to use the computer lab for this activity so that everyone could have some “hands on” experience. is the link you’ll want to go to.  Thanks to Alice Mercer who shared this resource via Plurk.