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Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Learning a new game can be fun, exciting, challenging or even the opposite; uninteresting. Recently, I have been discovered that I not only must learn a new game, but also be the inventor of this new game. WOW! It took me a minute to wrap my mind around what is being asked of me, especially because this game has such high stakes.

Being the winner of my game is defined as being an effective teacher by utilizing 21st Century Literacy Skills. In order to achieve this, I must have a solid perception of what being effective entails, therefore, I need to understand the National Education Standards for Teachers (2008) in order create my GAME plan. As Dr. Cinnamo (2009) explained, GAME signifies “Setting Goals, taking Action, Monitoring, and Evaluate and Extending” (p.30) therefore my first step is setting my Goals.

The NET Standard I am creating my GAME plan for is “Model Digital-Age Work and Learning.” This first Goal involves me being able to demonstrate fluency in technologies both current and rising, while sharing my information to support students’ learning. The Action is to incorporate many of the skills I have learned from previous and future courses via Walden into my lessons as well as using my classroom technologies to their fullest potential on a daily basis. In terms of Monitoring, this will be more of a trial and error event that will need adjusting, but most importantly, I will need to be very honest when reflecting objectively on my teaching. By monitoring students’ performances through informal and formal assessments in addition to creating a rubric for myself, these day-to-day notations will help me track specific moments while considering either modifying or moving forward. In order to Evaluate and Extend these specific moments, I will test my students’ content knowledge on the lessons that I have incorporated the aforementioned technologies. From here, I will reteach or enrich, which will show me the level of mastery of my students based on my teachings.

The second Goal is conveying relevant information through various digital venues in an effective manner to student, parent, and colleagues (2008). My Action will include a multi-facet approach starting with creating a group account for my colleagues in which to share files, questions, and information. After I create the group account, I will send a mass email to all schools within my county asking each principal to forward the invite for colleagues to join, but will also set the group’s profile for special education teachers around the world. Within my classroom, I will provide ‘show and tell’ with my students showing them my teacher webpage and the various links that are available. For my parents, I will offer times (PTA meetings, parent-teacher conference night, and even during/after school) to demonstrate how to access my webpage and the wiki that I will create for parental use. To eliminate confusion, I will also provide my parents “quick step” guide outlining the steps to take for obtaining different options. Monitoring will be on-going, by providing my contact information, my parents contact me at various times for various reasons. During the times mentioned above, I will be available for monitoring, questions and even conferences. Concurrently, I will be Monitoring the colleague group account on a daily basis via my email. Evaluating and Extending will be based on the volume of response in which is received through the various digital venues. After examining the reactions, I will then continue, adjust or alter for the start of the next school year.

I look forward to doing this project for the remainder of this year, which will enable me to tweak as needed, therefore, starting off next year strong from day 1. GAME ON!!!!

Cennamo, K., Ross, J. & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology Integration for Meaningful Classroom Use: A Standards-Based Approach. (Laureate Education, Inc., Custom ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

National Education Standards for Teachers (NETS-T) located at


  1. Kimberly

    You really have thought about your goals and have developed a wonderful GAME plan. Your goal for conveying relevant information through various digital venues in an effective manner to student, parent, and colleagues, I think is a very critical piece. As our world is going digital, we too have to become digital. We constantly share information through digital venues-- facebook, twitter, texting, e-mails, video chat, instant messaging. I love that you plan to setup a group for educators in your county. I often forget to look outside of my school district for opinions, advice and creative sources. This is a great way to collaborate with colleagues and to accomplish your goal.

    Laura Roberts

  2. Parks,

    You have a massive GAME plan set forth. You suggested that you were going to create a rubric for yourself that you would follow, have you given some thought to what this rubric will assess? You mentioned that you were also going to contact other schools in your county. Considering this will be the first time that you take on the GAME plan would it be better to begin in your school first and then the following year to branch out and include other schools?


  3. What a great GAME plan; well thought out, organized, and detailed. A great compliment to your second goal would be an event like my school does to share information with students, parents, and other community members. We host a Parent Empowerment Summit twice a year. We discuss topics such as: Preparing for the Senior Year
    Conflict Management
    GTCC Scholarships
    Success in the Classroom
    Parent Assistance Module
    Futures 4 Kids
    Transitioning from Middle to High School
    Registering for Classes & Setting Goals for the Future
    This event have been very beneficial to all who have attended. I think it would be a great compliment to your goal four.

  4. You have some really great ideas!
    I think your idea of the quick step: guide would be very beneficial for your parents. Have you already set up a wiki for your classroom? I find that this would be a great tool to communicate with other teachers as well as your parents.
    When you are monitoring, what do you think about asking parental input on what they found beneficial or confusing in the website/wiki? This might be an idea to help evaluate the sight.

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  6. Kimberly-

    First of all, I would just like to mention how much I enjoyed the writing of this post-what a creative approach! I was thoroughly amused throughout.

    You state that your second goal is "conveying relevant information through various digital venues in an effective manner to student, parent, and colleagues." I am curious as to what type of account you are planning on setting up for your colleagues-you mention that you want it to be a place to share materials, files, questions, information, etc. but is it a file on a common drive within the school? A docs account? A blog? I'm just curious, because I love the collaborative nature of your approach. I assume that's it's not a common drive, since you plan to extend the invitation beyond your building, but I wasn't sure whether you planned on connecting with colleagues via multiple outlets.

    Furthermore, I love your willingness to bring the parents in and teach them how to use what you are extending. Parents seem to truly appreciate when they are provided with additional resources, but sometimes they don't know how to use or access what you provide and feel silly asking. Your accessibility will allow them to learn without feeling "technologically challenged", and I think that is wonderful.

    Cennamo, Ross, and Ertmer suggest that "when used as a support and resource for the communicative processes of teaching and learning, the computer can be used to increase creative thinking processes among groups and communities" (2009, p. 70). It sounds as though you are well on your way to making this a reality and encouraging a strong dialogue with students, parents, and peers alike!

    Have a good week,

    Cennamo, K., Ross, J., & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology integration for meaningful classroom use: A standards-based approach. Mason, OH: Cengage Learning.

  7. Hi Sadie,
    Thank you for your suggestion about starting the yahoo group on a smaller scale, but there is already something similar in place and it isn't a resourceful site as it needs to be, especially when trying to encompass all the different realms that special educational services provides. There might be only 1 special education teacher that provides 1 particular service within a building or even an area, therefore, I think reaching out far beyond my districts' boundaries for ideas, encouragement, lessons, methods, etc, would be more beneficial and stimulate more activity.
    Thank you for your thoughts.

  8. Amanda,
    I hope you have a great week too! And thank you for your sweet comments! I plan to start a yahoo group and extend the invite to everyone across the continents (think globally!) And have one of the revolver maps posted to show the activity (I just love those) Using Google Docs, papers can be downloaded and shared easily and you can have a central location to do what you need to do. I have seen the power of something of this nature with 1st grade teachers and I am so excited about receiving input, expertise, brainstorming, problem solving, and also being able to help others if I can in the wonderful world of special education. You can do it too! We'll do this fun adventure together!