Monday, March 26, 2007

Think Summer!

Summer Professional Development - Google Docs & Spreadsheets

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It's nearly 80 degrees here in Chicago, and it is also my first day back at school after a relaxing spring break. I am getting in the mood for summer! Traditionally, this is the time my plans for June, July, and August start to take shape, and I thought that perhaps others are thinking along similar lines. Here's a list of professional development opportunities that I've been compiling in Google Docs and Spreadsheets with the help of Laurie Bartels, a Google Certified Teacher from Rye, New York. Take a look and maybe you'll find something worth exploring this summer. Having time to retreat from every day life to reflect upon one's professional practices is so important and we teachers deserve quality professional development opportunities.

This list is not a ringing endorsement of any particular program; I simply went searching for anything under the sun that might appeal to colleagues. I do, however, attend NECC every summer, and I can vouch for the value of this tremendous educational technology event. Several years ago, I also attended the Teach the Teachers Collaborative at the Thacher School and found it to be a very rewarding and well-run program. The setting of Thacher School, the fellowship of other teachers, and the opportunity to develop Webquests in this immersion program were fabulous. It was disappointing when it ceased to exist for a few summers, and I'm glad to hear that it is up and running again under new leadership. Bernie Dodge, of course, is returning to teach at TTC, as well as fellow ITM blogger, Mark Wagner.

What do you do over the summer to recharge your batteries? Are there programs that you recommend? Submit suggestions in the comments section, or even better yet, email me ( I'll add you as a collaborator to this Google Doc. I plan to add to this list indefinitely, so make sure you take a peek at it from time to time.