Course 4, Week 2: Partners in Learning

This week we are discussing the needed change in our pedagogy, with the use of technology integration, to ensure our students are actively engaged and participating in their learning. We very well know the traditional industrial teaching styles should stay in the past where they belong. Let us continue to explore and embrace new pedagogies that will prepare students for the 21st-century skills they need for a workforce that may not even exist yet.

Photo by Mihai Surdu on Unsplash
May the three forces be with you.

New pedagogies, new change leadership, and new system economics are the three forces at work in this innovative change in education. New pedagogies are about changing the “relationships between all the key players in learning: students, teachers, technologies, school cultures, curricula, and assessments.” New change leadership is about creating an environment where the students take charge of their learning and become intrinsically motivated to lead themselves. New system economics refers to these new pedagogies being cost-effective with the potential of twice the learning for the same money (Fullan & Langworthy, 2014).

How do new pedagogies find deep learning?

Fullan and Langworthy (2014) painted an exciting picture of an innovative change in education taking place. Frustrated and bored students are pushing for changes to meet their 21st-century ways of learning and some teachers are showing students how to take charge of their own learning. Under this new way, students are defining their own goals and teachers are supporting them by teaching them how to pursue these goals and achieve them. The changes happening between teachers and students is creating new roles for both.

A Rich Seam: How New Pedagogies Find Deep Learning


Fullan (2017) explained the initiative, New Pedagogies for Deep Learning includes six C’s: character education, citizenship, collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking. This initiative had a strong beginning in Ontario, Canada. As a result of the initiative, teachers and students were feeling empowered and it was noticed the students came to care more about school, life, and making a difference. “Students are becoming a force for change, they are frustrated and bored with traditional school and starting to influence the pedagogy (Fullan, 2017).”

The new pedagogy defined

Fullen (2015) defined pedagogy as drawing out learning from students and explained it was rooted in Latin. The New Pedagogy is the best learning relationship between and among students and teachers. It includes partnerships between teachers and students and they are all learning more from each other (Fullen, 2015).

Three Emerging Theories of Learning
“Technology integration can play a large role in changing our learning environments to better support the development of higher-level thinking skills needed by the 21st century (Doak).” Three theories of learning emerging are, (1.) situated cognition, (2.) distributed cognition, and (3.) socially shared cognition. These three new theories embrace action, communication and collaboration, and the use of technology to achieve learning environments with higher-level thinking skill development students need to be best prepared for their futures. Our teaching practice should be based on research and these current theories can assist with that.
In conclusion

My students are collaborating with each other on their work. They are discussing their ideas and giving feedback. They ask questions and learn from each other. They share ideas and build on them taking their own direction. Students are setting their own goals and continuously work towards achieving them. They are empowered to question our lessons and encouraged to give suggestions and make choices on how to achieve the learning objectives. However, there is always room for improvement. As the students learn to take charge of their education, I learn to let go and allow them to make more decisions about their path. Through new pedagogy and new learning theories, it is possible to improve my teaching practice to become more of an innovative teacher ready for the 21st-century higher-levels thinking skills development my young students need.


Doak, S.Emerging Theories of Learning and the Role of Technology.

Fullan, M. (22 January 2015). Topic Video: The New Pedagogy. Retrieved from

Fullan, M. (13 March 2017). New Pedagogies for Deep Learning. Retrieved from

Fullan, M. & Langworthy, M. (January 2014). A Rich Seam: How New Pedagogies Find Deep Learning. Retrieved from

Course 4, Week 1 Frameworks for Learning


“While educational technology does make learning visible, it is the teacher that makes learning meaningful.” L. Portnoy

I fell down an internet rabbit hole while researching technology integration frameworks this week. There are so many articles, videos, and graphics!

When planning lessons, teachers use a framework to assist in deciding on how to best teach the content while integrating technology. The two frameworks we considered were Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition (SAMR) and Technological knowledge, Pedagogical knowledge, and Content Knowledge (TPACK).

“We want to impact student learning, not just replace a tool with a tool.”  -NCVPS


The SAMR model was created by Dr. Ruben Puentedura in 2010 to assist teachers in reflecting on how they are using technology in their lessons. SAMR is designed to help teachers use technology to move their tech from enhancing learning to it transforming learning. It has been likened to making the switch from crawling to walking. Google doc with the SAMR ladder graphic


TPACK is also a framework teachers can use to guide their use of technology with their students and it was introduced by Punya Mishra and Matthew J. Koehler of Michigan State University in 2006. There are three areas of knowledge teachers use (1) content, (2) pedagogy, and (3) technology. The content knowledge is the “what”-their subject matter, the pedagogy is the “how”-what activities they use to teach, and finally, the teacher’s technology knowledge is how they layer the tech into the lesson to improve the students’ learning.


I created this graphic with tech at the bottom because it shouldn’t be the first we think about. -HM

This infographic compares and contrasts the SAMR and TPACK frameworks for technology integration using a Double Bubble Thinking Map. Google doc with the Double Bubble Map

Google doc with the Double Bubble Map:
My practice of technology integration

I am a support teacher for third grade and I do a lot of small groups and one-on-one teaching. Currently, I am using technology to meet with students at home. We meet in my Webex room to work on reading and writing. We use several Google tools like Slides, Docs, and Google Search. I prepare some lessons in a Google Slide deck for students to see easily. I use Reading A to Z for online books to read with students. I sometimes use a document camera to show writing and reading books. According to the SAMR framework, I am at the Substituting and Augmenting level. I am using more technology now than ever. Before teaching online, I did not use a lot of technology with the teaching I was doing.

My school’s technology vision

My beliefs and practices fit into my school’s vision for learning. I try to personalize learning for my students by offering choices. I provide immediate feedback on students’ work while we are together. I encourage students to be risk-takers and to learn from their mistakes. When learning takes a turn due to students’ interests and questions, I welcome it.

my schools’ technology vision
Real-world example

Serendipitously, this week my son, Jacob, shared a video he made for his English 201 class. After viewing his video, I had to ask to see the instructions he had followed to come up with his product because I was very curious. You can see the full prompt in the screenshot below from Jacob’s phone. (I also thought it apropos Jacob accessed his course assignment on his mobile. I cannot imagine completing my course from my mobile! I am definitely showing my age.:) The professor explained in the instructions for the final paper the students are to create “an easily consumable video” instead of “scrambling to submit a behemoth final paper last minute.” I was pleased to see the professor had moved her teaching practice to the top rung of the SAMR ladder with this assignment.

There are many frameworks available for teachers to use to improve their lessons involving technology. The SAMR is quick to gauge at what level your lesson is. The TPACK helps teachers to keep the different types of knowledge in mind. Regardless of which technology integration framework you choose, we need to keep attempting to improve our teaching by constantly learning more to stay current. Being aware of these frameworks is a step in the right direction.


Ady, K. & Kemp, B. TPACK vs SAMR: Key Differences Between 2 Tech Frameworks. Rretrieved from 

Alivi, J. (2019). A REVIEW OF TPACK AND SAMR MODELS: HOW SHOULD LANGUAGE TEACHERS ADOPT TECHNOLOGY?. Journal of English for Academic and Specific Purposes. 2. 1. 10.18860/jeasp.v2i2.7944.

Bevans, J. (1 Nov 20) Week 1: Frameworks for Learning. Retrieved from

Introduction to the SAMR Model. Retrieved from

NCVPS Professional Learning. Take 5: Why use TPACK and SAMR?

Marshburn, J. (8 Nov 20) Jacob's Eng 201 final. Retrieved from

Portnoy, L. (1 Feb 18). How SAMR and Tech Can Help Teachers Truly Transform Assessment. Retrieved from

Course 3, Week 5-Breaking Down Barriers

Cycle of Socialization
Cycle of Socialization

The activity we completed for this week’s action was to read Bobbie Harro’s chapter, the Cycle of Socialization. Below you will find my first Flipgrid post. I have not used a tool like Flipgrid before where we make and watch others’ video clips. I especially appreciated how easy it was to make a recording. While watching others’ videos, the next video would start playing making it a quick and easy transition by not having to select the video myself.

Fear. …people who conform minimally receive the benefit of being left alone…Our silence is consent.


I can foresee using Flipgrid with my students to encourage conversations and discussions. Most grade three students enjoy videoing themselves and watching their peers’ videos. They like to make positive comments for feedback, too. I could provide the prompt or activity and have the students respond or reflect through a Flipgrid. Although this was my first, the students have used Flipgrid before with their classroom teacher. Most of my special educational needs students struggle with writing so this platform will make the process easier using videos instead of writing.

My practice

My reading on diversity and social justice will impact my practice. Harro’s chapter helped me to see and be more aware of the different social identities. From here on out, I will remember to be mindful of my students in the targeted groups and the agent groups. I will question myself: Am I showing bias? Am treating my students equitably? Am I giving or taking away their power? Am I being a good role model?

My social identity

I identify as a middle-aged, white woman raised in poverty in the south-eastern United States. My social identities set me off on a path as a young adult and somehow I landed where I am now. If I knew then what I know now, there were so many other opportunities I could have explored. Choosing teaching as a profession is so typical for a woman. My children are my greatest achievement. That being said, getting married at 18 and having babies at 20 (just like my mother and grandmother) was not necessarily the best decision for our futures. Luckily my kiddos have chosen to break this cycle that kept us in poverty. I share all this personal information because those struggles are what I believe shaped me into this middle-aged, white woman I am today. My start in life could have been easier if I was a member of more agent groups; however, like every coin has its flip side, my start could have been much worse.

I am the accumulation of all my life experiences, shuffled together with my agent and target memberships. I can empathize with my students. I can appreciate my colleagues. Harro’s article resonated with me on a deep level. Harro shared information I “can’t not know it anymore.” I see the power imbalance in my workplace, for example. I am one of those silent bystanders who “conform in order to receive the benefit of being left alone.” I do not argue with my administrators when I believe my students or I am being treated unfairly. I may ask a question but when I am not favorably listened to, I stop. I cannot afford to be a troublemaker. At least, I am not willing to risk my job by challenging those in power. No promises but I realize I need to try harder and I will try harder to make a difference.

our community Flipgrid discussion on the cycle of socialization

This week we explored technology tools we can use to collaborate and share ideas. We dove into the content-the cycle of socialization, using the tool- Flipgrid, while we practiced the visible thinking trend-Text Rendering Protocol. Please join our community discussion by following the link to our community Flipgrid

Course 3, Week 6 Final project

My team and I chose to “create a unit planner based on the enduring understandings of this course that support students in becoming Creative Communicators and Global Collaborators (ISTE Standards for Students 6 and 7).” After some discussion of the different options, we concluded the unit planning would be more useful. Our positions are elementary school teachers and currently, we do not have plans to offer a professional development opportunity; therefore, the PD program would not be the most useful for us to create at this time.

Tackling Nonfiction Texts Bootcamp

The topic my team chose, Tackling Nonfiction Texts Bootcamp, was a non-fiction text features unit and the standards chosen are currently being covered in our grade levels.  We chose this due to the practicality of being able to include infographics in the lesson plan and being able to create a learning experience to span three grade levels.

Two heads are better than one… C. S. Lewis

Not only does collaborating with a cohesive team make group projects more enjoyable, but you also have a better chance of creating a better product.  Once you start brainstorming, sharing ideas, and building on others’ ideas; a powerful collaborative is created. In addition, I’ve learned frequent communication is essential when collaborating. You do not have to have all the answers and even asking “dumb” questions can move the ideas along. Like we tell our students when they are stuck: just start writing words on the paper, and eventually, a story will form. Once our collaboration was started, our story was able to be formed.

The project was different from other learning experiences I have designed because of the technology topic of creating infographics. Using what I learned in Course 3 and translating it into opportunities to share my learning with my students creates more enriching, diverse lessons. This opportunity is like a breath of fresh air into a lesson that is not necessarily the most exciting topic.

This final project related to what I learned in Course 3 because creating this unit planner allowed us to take the skills we learned, like infographics and design elements, and pass the learning along to our students.

I believe what has influenced me the most in course 3 is improving my visual communication. After learning the design principles, I began using them to improve my communication online. This is reflected in my final project where I attempted to incorporate design principles. For example, on slide 3 of the Infographic Creation Lesson Outline, we used visual links instead of just a list of words.

example of using visual links

In my experience, the typical elementary school student is egocentric. They complete their online projects to please themselves. The idea of making a slide deck more comprehensible for the reader is a new concept for many of them. They still want to have multiple, unreadable florescent green fonts with a red background, for example. I have included a work sample below showing what an eight-year-old finds visually appealing. I was able to talk him down to only two font colors and I plan to work with this student to incorporate more design principles in the future. I will know students have learned the concepts once I see them independently using infographics in their work or following design principles. Hopefully, I will also see students making suggestions to their peers on how they can improve their work.

grade 3 student work sample showing what is visually appealing to this eight-year-old

I hope to see students take what they learn about infographics and design elements and transfer them to their future work. I hope they will agree with the idea infographics can make learning easier. I hope they will agree using the design principles of Contrast, Alignment, Repetition, & Proximity (CARP) in their work will make relaying their message to the reader more effective. In addition, I hope to see students improve on giving and receiving feedback as this is a difficult skill for this age group and more exposure is beneficial.

Course three has been full of fun activities and new information. I look forward to using what I have learned about visual literacy and continue to become a better communicator and collaborator.

Course 3, Week 4-Choose a visual aid and update it

Design principled presentations

“Ninety percent of what you hear is gone after 30 seconds!” David J.P. Phillips explained in his TedXStockholm presentation five design principles to follow to improve presentation slides so the audience will retain the information you are trying to impart.

Image from David JP Phillips TEDx
  1. One message per slide to keep the focus
  2. Include an image of your message and a few words to highlight your point
  3. Size-The main idea should be sized bigger
  4. Contrast-What you are talking about should be brightest. No white backgrounds.
  5. Objects-No more than six.

Phillips finished up by reminding us it is not the number of slides in the deck, it is the number of objects in each slide. In other words, when admin tells you to only use one slide for your lesson to keep it easy for your students, they’re wrong-according to Phillips. Forcing you to have10 messages in one slide to cover your content defeats the purpose of keeping it simple.

“If companies would have as little respect for business as they have for presentations the majority would go bankrupt.” -John Medina, Ph.D.
Less is More

Zen principles can apply to everyday life, like when designing presentation slides. Garr Renolds told us in his blog, Presentation Zen, to keep our visuals simple. He showed us before and after slides as examples of how to improve visuals. Simplistic changes can make the slides more relevant, such as making sure images match the message, using declarative statements as the title for the slide, and using the image as the slide itself instead of placing the image on a slide.

Who knew storytelling should be used in modern presentations? Obviously, Renolds did. In his blog post, 10 tips for Improving Your Presentations Today, not only did he share tips, but he also shared his TedXKyoto speech: “10 Ways to Make Better Presentations: Lessons from Storytellers.”

Renolds’ speech explained several ways to improve presentations and the importance or advantage of including storytelling too.

Visually organized=Digital planner space

After reading, watching, and listening to Phillips and Renolds, I brainstormed different ideas for which visual aid (slide, poster, anchor chart, etc.) I would like to update. After considering a few ideas, I decided to create a Google slide to help me quickly find planning documents in my Google Drive-what I’m calling a digital planner space. There are several steps to find the planners in the shared Drive (see image below) and I always spend a lot of time searching for what I need. My digital planner space was something quick to create and easy to find in my Drive

I took Renold’s suggestion about making a photograph the actual slide. I used a photo I took while on vacation in Las Palmas a few years ago. I chose this photograph as a reminder of simpler times. The photo was not as wide as the slide so I horizontally flipped a second copy of the photo to cover the white space.  I considered changing the size of the slide to match the size of the photo; however, I have tried that in the past and felt it too time-consuming.  Next, I included sticky note images and made them links to the different planning documents. I shared the slide with my grade three team and asked them if this type of visual helped them or am I the only one struggling to find the planning documents. I shared my visual aid with the grade three team and asked if they found it helpful. One out of the four teachers responded with feedback. The teacher wrote, “This is awesome! Thanks for sharing. I love the virtual sticky notes!”

Steps to find planning documents:After:

Holly’s G3 Digital Planner Space

Course 3, Week 3-Show not tell

Course 3, Week 3-Show not tell


It was a lot of fun to play around with this week’s topic about making data and information visual. I explored infographics and created a timeline using Google Slides, I started a draft of my next resume and added several diagrams, and finally, I  created an infographic using Piktochart to help me remember how to do my breathing exercises my vocal tutor has me do.


Infographics are great visuals to make information more accessible to our students and I’m excited to incorporate more in my teaching. I am also looking forward to having my students create their own infographics. I’m certain they will enjoy creating them as much as I did. What a great way to learn! This topic was a great reminder of the power of using visuals in our teaching.

Continue reading “Course 3, Week 3-Show not tell”

Course 3, Week 2: Facilitating Collaboration

What do you think?

Thinking routines is a new concept for me although it has been around for years. I watched Project Zero Thinking Routines to gain a basic understanding. I learned these are strategies like See, Think, Wonder (STW), people can use to guide them towards a productive way of processing information that becomes so routine, it’s easy.  Harvard Graduate School of Education shared, “Thinking Routines loosely guide learners’ thought processes and encourage active processing.”

Visible thinking routines

Next, I took a look into Visible Thinking Routines (VTR). In his blog, Sean Hampton Cole defined VTR as, “having a carefully chosen set of embedded cognitive and meta-cognitive tools to think with and to use to understand better.”


Then, I decided to create my first Padlet and ask my colleagues to share how they have used the See, Think, Wonder visible thinking routine. I hoped this would start a conversation to lead to healthy collaboration.

I found out from the Padlet attempt I have been a part of STW activities in the past but I hadn’t made the connection it was a visible thinking routine. I will update my blog as I receive more collaboration on my Padlet.

In summary

I wholeheartedly agree collaborating with my colleagues is a wonderful way to learn and improve my practice. Also, I see the value in planning a collaboration for my students. Currently, I work a lot one-on-one with students right now. I haven’t begun working with groups of students yet. I will be thinking of ways I can include collaboration among students and keep an eye out for how my classroom teacher colleagues might be able to also.

ISTE Standards for Educators

6.c. Create learning opportunities that challenge students to use a design process and computational thinking to innovate and solve problems.



Project Zero's Thinking Routine Toolbox.

Visible Thinking Routines for Blogging

What is Visible Thinking Really



Course 3, Week 1: We are all Designers

Boring! You could have scored my blog’s visual hierarchy level fair at best. I realized I needed to make changes on my blog to better communicate with my readers. What do you think of the new and improved version?

My blog before the changes. 


We tell our students to show, not tell when writing. I’m afraid I did a lot of telling and not a lot of showing. The blog is text-heavy and I worry readers will skim or scan without wanting to read the post. The colors are muted. It may not look appealing or draw the reader into the topic.

My blog would be more aesthetically appealing if I could improve the images, font sizes, the colors on the page, and the layout of the text.


I decided to remove the picture of myself on vacation. I realized if this were a travel blog it might make sense; however, since it is a teacher-tech blog it is not fitting.

Font size

I changed the title to make it simpler and spelled out the acronym in smaller text. I included different size headings to guide the reader to see what is more important.


I changed the colors of the blog to try to appeal to my readers and improve the readability.


I shortened my paragraphs and included more headings to chunk the information to make the content clearer.


As you can see on this page, there were a few changes I made to my blog to make it more appealing to my readers. Leave a reply below. I’d love to hear what you think about the changes and any suggestions you have for me!



Course 2, Unit 6: Final Project

Image by moonkee na from Pixabay

My three-woman group for this project was Erika, Andrea, and myself. Erika and I work together in second grade at our school and we collaborated on the final project in Course One. We work well together so I asked her right away if she’d like to collaborate on this project together. I knew from reading the Cohort 12 blog posts at the beginning of Course One, Andrea is also a second-grade teacher so I sent her an email asking if she’d like to join Erika and me on this project. Fortunately, she was able to join us.

The collaboration on this project went very well. Erika and Andrea out-did themselves with the lessons, resources, and their contributions. It is wonderful working with motivated, responsible professionals! Kudos to Erika and Andrea and I’m grateful to have had such a positive experience working on a virtual group project.

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Although it can be rewarding working with a group, it is also challenging. We were all dealing with a pandemic, being in different time zones, and the jet-lag from traveling across the globe. Luckily we had the time for people to be able to provide their contributions. When collaborating on a unit planner with others who you never have face-to-face (f2f) meetings is different from planning sessions with coworkers at school. The personal connection aspect is missing. There are no quick hallway-meetings to ask questions or five-minute discussions. However, it is similar because we go back to our own computers to complete the work. We send messages and emails to get clarification and share ideas, just like our f2f coworkers.

We chose Option One, create a unit planner, because it was practical for Erika and Andrea to have created it for use with their students in their classrooms. Although our technology integrationist at school provides an introduction to internet safety to our students at the beginning of the year, this unit goes much more in-depth to helping students understand how to be proficient digital citizens. ISTE Digital Citizen 2 standards were the basis for the goals set for this unit.

This learning experience I helped design is different from my normal instruction because I am usually adapting or designing lessons for my English learners or my students with learning disabilities, not creating units of instruction. It is helpful for me to participate in the process Andrea and Erika used to create this unit. Of course, it is not completely different from what I usually do. This experience was like the instructional big picture instead of the snapshots I typically work on.

The Digital Citizen unit we created synthesized many of the ideas we learned in Course Two. Ideas like respecting the intellectual property of others, connecting with others on social media (safely), managing digital identity and protecting data, and differentiating between truth and misinformation. The ISTE standards for educators support the work we are doing with students and the Digital Citizen unit planner we created was based on the enduring understandings of Course Two.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

My Course Two final project was a globally collaborative project. We used the UbD lesson template and included desired results, learning goals, and opportunities for students to show evidence of their learning.

Course 2, Week 5: Becoming Contributors

Gerd Altmann, Pixabay

There is no acceptable use (AU) policy for students at my school, only for adults. The AU can be found on the school’s website and in the faculty handbook and I have included the AU at the bottom of this blog. Honestly, this was my first time reading through it carefully and I had two main takeaways. First, the school wants everyone to use the WiFi provided and second, don’t do anything inappropriate while using it.

image by Holly Marshburn

While reading the AU, I considered if it empowers stakeholders to make positive contributions to local and global communities. In the AU, it said, “Our goal in providing this service (WiFi) to users is to promote educational excellence by facilitating resource sharing, innovation, and communication.” However, taking into consideration what Scott McLeod shared in his TEDx talk, Extracurricular Empowerment, it seems to be a way of controlling users out of fear something bad will be done. It is unclear to me how the AU is promoting any sharing, innovation, or communication. I believe the AU is laying out the rules and if anyone breaks them, then you won’t be allowed to use the WiFi at school. For teachers, it could mean disciplinary action from the administration. McLeod encouraged us to let go of the fear and the need to control in order to empower the students, and in this instance, the people. That being said, of course, I believe the students’ privacy would be honored and we should behave professionally.

Media literacy is an on-going process of growth. Technology is evolving at the speed of an expert typist’s words-per-minute and it’s a continuous journey to learn what’s new, relevant, and useful. I have a degree in instructional technology and distance education yet here I am taking another tech certification so I can continue to improve my media literacy. I am always asking my students to teach me what they’re doing online. I offer help to my colleagues with any tech issues they may have that I can help them with. Sometimes it feels like a blow to the ego not to be the ultimate media literacy expert since I have that ITDE degree (that I’m not even using); however, I swallow my pride and ask anyone and everyone for help to improve my tech skills and continue to learn.
video by Holly Marshburn

Participatory culture is a term used to describe how people are creating self-made content then sharing their videos, audio, text, and images on social media (Mindjet, 2008). I have embraced this culture and I enjoy putting myself out there. I have always loved making digital stories (DS) and I have been posting my videos on my YouTube channel for a while. I find the best way to learn something new is to practice it on yourself. In 2017, I wasn’t able to attend my graduation ceremony in the states so my friends celebrated with me in Russian style-selfies and a big party. I created my ITDE digital story to remember it by.

Recently, I discovered Tik Tok. I believe this is a prime example of participatory culture and just this week I posted my first video on TikTok. So far, I have three followers! (Two are personal friends but it’s still a start.) Seriously though for me, contributing my work to the web isn’t about how many followers, likes, or subscribers I have. I do appreciate all that of course but I enjoy the process of creating and have a warm sense of accomplishment when I upload and/or post my creations for the world to see and judge-or not. In the past, I have had students create their own digital stories. They would write a story, create illustrations, record themselves reading their story, take pictures of their pages, then share them with others. I’m not the only one who enjoys this process of creating for a purpose and audience.

Photo by Stefan Cosma on Unsplash

Deanna Troi was my mentor in learning about empathy. Counselor Troi and my lived experiences of almost a half-century have helped me become a more empathetic person. I’ve learned to listen to others, try to consider perspectives different from my own, and being naturally introverted has helped. When someone is mean to me, I consider the possibility his wife beats him at home. When a student is being a jerk, I imagine she has an older sister getting all the attention at home and is acting out with me because she knows I’m safe. When I notice a student or peer is not being empathetic, I try to support them by asking questions about the situation to try to get them to see another perspective and possibly feel empathy. Empathy comes from nature and future. We’re born with it, or not, but there’s always room to learn the ways of the Betazoid.


Extracurricular empowerment (McLeod, TEDxDesMoines) FacultyHandbook(2018-19 September). pp. 35-38 PuttingtheParticipatory Culture to Work. (2008). Retrieved from

The School offers electronic communications and network access to all users. Access to the network provides users with Internet access in addition to other resources. All employees, students and visitors are encouraged to use the school wifi or wired internet connections (not to use data from cellular networks). Our goal in providing this service to users is to promote educational excellence by facilitating resource sharing, innovation and communication. While the Internet provides a massive information source to our school, we must also recognize that some material available may not be considered of educational value in a school setting. The responsibility for proper educational use of the network lies with the user. If an AAS user chooses to access resources that are objectionable, adult-oriented, or restricted, the consequence may be withholding or termination of access privileges, depending on the circumstances and intent of the user.

AAS Computer Systems and Internet Use Terms and Conditions

  1. School computers should be used to support education and research consistent
    with the learning outcomes of the Anglo-American School. Use of another
    organization’s network or computing resources from school computers must
    comply with the rules appropriate for that network as well as for the AAS network.
  2. Network Etiquette – Users are expected to abide by the following rules of network etiquette. These include (but are not limited to) the following:
    a. One should be polite and never abusive in messages to others. Using
    vulgarities or any other inappropriate language will not be tolerated. Hate mail,
    harassment, discriminatory remarks and other antisocial behaviors are
    prohibited. Messages should not contain profanity, obscene comments,
    sexually explicit material, or expressions of bigotry or hate. Such remarks may fall under purview of the AAS Harassment Policy.
    b. E-mail is not guaranteed to be private and may be monitored at any time.
    Messages relating to or in support of illegal activities may be reported to
    c. E-mail chain letters should never be forwarded to or from AAS e-mail accounts.
    d. The personal address, phone numbers, or passwords of users of the AngloAmerican School, including one’s own, should not be revealed without the
    employee’s permission other than on a need-to-know basis.
    e. The network should not be used in such a way as to intentionally disrupt its use by others.
    f. Files downloaded or transferred via removable media should be checked for
    viruses. Deliberate attempts to degrade or disrupt system performance will be
    viewed as a severe offense.
    g. Illegal downloading of files is prohibited.
    h. Files stored in public storage areas may be deleted by the school at any time.
    Users should save files either on removable storage or on their home network
    i. Files stored on the school computer local hard drives are not backed up and
    should be saved on either removable storage or in user home directories on
    the network servers.
  3. Accuracy of Information – Use of any information obtained via the Internet is at
    one’s own risk. Users are responsible for determining the accuracy or quality of
    information obtained through school accounts. Users should not alter any computer configuration on a school computer (without express permission). This includes installing ANY programs from home, the Internet, etc. If a user needs a particular program for school use, the user should contact their divisional administrator (principal or direct supervisor) and/or with the request.
  4. Security is a high priority, especially since the system involves many users. If a
    user identifies a security problem on the network, the user must notify a teacher, librarian or principal, without demonstrating the problem to other users. Users should not intentionally seek information on, obtain copies of, or modify files, other data, or passwords belonging to other users, or misrepresent other users on the network. Attempts to gain unauthorized access to system program or computer equipment will result in the cancellation of user privileges.
  5. Vandalism – Vandalism will result in revocation of privileges as well as other
    sanctions cited in the AAS handbooks and Board Policy Manual. Vandalism
    includes any malicious attempt to harm, modify, destroy, or remove from the AAS premises computer hardware, software, or data of another user.
  6. Any software installed must be properly licensed and evaluated by AAS IT
    Department prior to the installation.
  7. Computers and other electronic equipment available for checkout may not be
    removed from the AAS campus by AAS Staff without explicit, written permission. Lists of available items for checkout will be updated regularly. AAS Staff members may checkout approved devices for professional use only. When checking-out and using an AAS school-owned ICT device, AAS Faculty and Staff members agree to the conditions and procedures outlined below:
    a. AAS ICT devices are only to be used to support our school’s Mission and
    Vision. Personal, non-school related use is inappropriate and prohibited.
    b. AAS school-owned ICT devices off-campus use is short-term only (i.e.,
    c. AAS Staff members are 100% responsible for the off-campus care and
    appropriate use of the AAS school-owned ICT devices checked out to them.
    d. AAS staff members are liable for any associated costs due to on or off campus
    damage/loss/theft, including repair/replacement costs.
    e. All AAS school-owned ICT devices must be checked out through the current
    prescribed circulation system. Any subsequent extensions of checkout periods
    must include a visual inspection and verification of the AAS school-owned ICT
    device by the ICT / IT staff.
    f. In the event of the loss or theft of an AAS school-owned ICT device, on or off
    campus, the user must notify the following immediately — AAS Security,
    immediate supervisor or Divisional Principals, and the ICT / IT staff. (This will
    ensure that recovery procedures can be activated as soon as is possible
    including device tracking and security surveillance.)
  8. Damage to AAS school-owned ICT devices must be reported immediately to the
    employee’s immediate supervisor or Divisional Principals.
  9. AAS Administration reserves rights to monitor any information which is stored on the AAS Network Servers or transmitted over AAS Intranet, Extranet, or Internet communication links. This includes (but not limited to) any data sent over AAS wired and wireless communication systems.

AAS respects the right of employees to use blogs and social media as part of their professional network and as an extension of their personal and professional lives. We do not want to discourage employees from self-publishing and self-expression, but employees are expected to follow the guidelines and policies set forth to provide a clear line between you as the individual and you as the employee in order to preserve the environment that is based on focusing on students at all times.

General Provisions – Employees should not allow social media or blogging for
personal reasons to create a distraction to the learning environment consistent with our similar expectations for students and as noted in Acceptable Use Agreements. Blogging or other forms of social media or technology include but are not limited to social media, video or wiki postings, personal blogs or other similar forms of online journals, diaries or personal newsletters not directly affiliated with AAS.

Consistent with standard privacy expectations in other areas of this handbook,
employees should not publicly discuss students, employees or work-related matters that would typically be considered confidential in other forms. Employees are expected to protect the privacy of the school and its employees and community, and are prohibited from disclosing information and any other proprietary and nonpublic information to which employees have access. Such information could include but is not limited to student and parent information, images of students, student work, financial information, admissions data, etc.

Instructional Blogging – The goal of instructional blogging and instructional social media is to promote sharing of ideas, collaboration, and expanded exchange of information. Instructional blogging/social media may be used to convey information about the school, promote and raise awareness of AAS activities, and communicate with employees, students, and parents to brainstorm, discuss divisional-specific activities and events. To start an instructional blog or social media site, you should consult with technology
leadership in your division and coordinate with the Director of Communications and Development. When blogging or using other forms of web-based forums, AAS must ensure that use of these communications maintains our highest standards of conduct, integrity and reputation while minimizing actual or potential legal risks, whether used inside or outside the workplace. We also have an interest in maintaining connected integrity of our systems and these leaders can provide support in ensuring tight integration with existing systems.

Personal Social Media – It is important to remember that the use of social media networking implies personal responsibility and a complicated separation between personal and professional speech. Individuals can be held personally and/or professionally liable for public commentary that is considered defamatory, obscene, proprietary or libelous by any offended party, including AAS. In order to maintain a professional and appropriate relationship with students, employees should not communicate with students who are currently enrolled (or former students under 18 years of age)using personal
social media sites.

o Staff should not issue or accept student friend requests or follow
individual students on personal social media accounts.
o Staff should decline students’ friend requests on personal social media
accounts. Employees are strongly encouraged to maximize “privacy” settings on personal social media accounts and should not share or allow access to these accounts with students. Staff should not have online interactions with students on social media outside of forums/platforms intended for educational purposes. Employees should refrain from using school-owned equipment, including computers, company-licensed software or other electronic equipment to conduct personal blogging and should not access personal social media during work hours, if said use will constitute a distraction to the learning environment and detract from a staff member’s primary duties as assigned. Professionals should never use social media to harass, threaten, discriminate or
disparage other employees, students or anyone associated with or doing business with AAS. If you choose to identify yourself as an AAS employee, please understand that some readers may view you as a spokesperson for the school. Because of this possibility, we ask that you state that your views expressed in your personal social media site(s) are your own and not those of the school, or of any person or organization affiliated or doing business with the school.
Posting school logos or other proprietary documents on personal social media sites constitutes a breach of copyright. In addition, it is recommended that employees obtain expressed consent of each of any person(s) in the photograph(s) or other image(s) that they choose to post online. Photos of students or individual student work should not be posted on an employee’s personal social media site. While traveling or participating in school-funded business, professional development, school sponsored/funded activities or trips, employees should refrain from posting photographs or accounts of personal entertainment, unprofessional behaviours, unprofessional comments or questionable social activities. Abuses associated with the above guidelines are consistent with similar behavior in other forms of media, print and in real life. As such, adjudication of problems or complaints in this area will be addressed through the appraisal process as appropriate to the Professional Responsibilities domain. If you have any questions related to these guidelines, ask your principal, supervisor, or Human Resources.