This post was written by BAVC Factory Filmmaker Buffy Almendares, Sophie Bedecarré Ernst, and BAVC's Director of Next Gen Programs Ingrid Hu Dahl after presenting about the SFPL Digital Learning Lab initiative at the Digital Media and Learning Conference in Chicago.
On our plane ride to Chicago, the three of us had an opportunity to talk both about how the experience of the San Francisco Public Library Youth Advisory Board has shaped Buffy and Sophie’s previous perception of youth media organizations and about how they hope to incorporate their experiences into the future learning lab — which is scheduled to begin construction later this year.
The SFPL Youth Advisory board has nineteen members that span from high schools across the Bay area with a range of media experience and technical skills, including Buffy and Sophie, who represented the board at DML presenting alongside learning lab partners the California Academy of Sciences, KQED, and BAVC.
The partner team — which didn’t start with youth at the planning phase — has considerably grown to embrace youth leadership and decision-making, which Buffy and Sophie clearly showcased in our 90-minute group presentation on March 14, 2013.
photo by Mike Lawrence
I occasionally find myself sitting in conference sessions and meetings and have to silently chuckle about the amount of electronic devices in my possession--a laptop, iPad, iPhone and all of the chargers and accessories that accompany them. However, at the Computer-Using Educators (CUE) Annual Conference in Palm Springs last week, I was far from the only person with a messenger bag full of devices. The CUE Conference brings together educators from all over California that are interested in advancing student learning through the use of technology. For three days, 3,200 teachers, administrators, technology coordinators and professional development providers shared tips and best practices for integrating technology tools into the classroom--both traditional and online.
Scanning through the conference sessions in the program, it was clear what the hot topics were this year: video, apps, and mobile, mobile, mobile. More than 10% of the approximately 300 sessions focused on using iPads. And these sessions were packed. From iPad basics to creating videos on the iPad, the best apps to install, and using them for differentiated instruction, it’s certain that educators see value in tablet computers and are eager to bring them into the classroom.
While there were quite a lot of technology veterans in this savvy group, it was also nice to see educators who are fairly new to this digital world and are enthusiastic about incorporating new tools and strategies into their teaching. In KQED's session, "Putting Science on the (Google) Map," we were pleasantly surprised to find that only a couple participants had previously created a Google Map. (Also exciting was that almost all of the attendees were science teachers!). As technology becomes increasingly available and accessible to our schools, I can only imagine this CUE community growing exponentially.
Want to jump onboard? The Fall CUE Conference is taking place in Napa Valley, October 26-27, 2012.