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Learning Library Blog 2015 ISTE Professional Learning Series
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2015 ISTE Professional Learning Series

By Heidi Ellis
February 5, 2015
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Ready to learn something new? Expand your digital toolkit and explore new ideas for learning and teaching with the 2015 ISTE Professional Learning Series. Created by members for members, these members-only webinars deliver new ideas and strategies right to your computer so you can catch up on the latest trends — anytime, anyplace.

Not an ISTE member? Join us today to get hours of free professional learning right at your fingertips!

ISTE Professional Learning Series: 2015 schedule

Feb. 19: Fizzle or Sizzle? Virtual Worlds in Education

When Second Life roared onto the scene in the mid-2000s, educators flocked to its virtual shores, compelled by its potential for education. Years later, Second Life has gone largely untapped as a serious education platform yet still maintains a powerful community of role players, educators and artisans who use the platform to create artistic and dynamic builds. Fast-forward to today's more education-friendly online environments, including Kitely, Minecraft and OpenSim, and educators' renewed interest in virtual worlds' potential for learning. But is it too late? Scott Merrick and Andrew Wheelock review what's been done and what's yet to come as virtual worlds seek their place in the educational sun.


Feb. 26: Creating Among Books: Library Makerspaces
Can a makerspace succeed in a school library? The answer is a resounding yes! From book art to game creation to 3D printing, learn how to incorporate making into the library space from two technology integration specialists. Topics include an overview of the physical space, specific technology tools, examples of past projects and more.


March 5: So You've Gone 1:1: What Now?

Congratulations! You've taken the leap into 1:1 learning. Now it's time to take a step back and reflect on what comes next. According to Elizabeth Heitsch and Robert Holley's work on the Learning Commons model of library design, you've got three main areas to focus on:

  • Physical. 1:1 will dramatically change how you see and use space in your learning environment.
  • Virtual. There's more to consider than just digital textbooks. Don't forget your school web presence, whether you use a learning management system or content distribution platform, and much, much more.
  • Cultural. The most nebulous but most important considerations are the cultural challenges and growth that 1:1 will inspire. Identify the values of your community and shift them using the increased access of your 1:1 learning environment.


March 12: Girls, Games and Coding
Sign up for our two-part synchronous online series to get a full range of perspectives on this important issue from practitioners, academics, parents and the girls themselves. Tune in to learn about:

  • Data on gaming and coding as it relates to females.
  • The tech and gaming industry's sudden push to bring more females into the field.
  • The benefits of gaming and coding for all students.
  • Resources and advocacy groups related to girls, gaming and coding.


March 19: Getting Started with Connected Learning and Global Collaboration
Join educators from across the world as they share global collaboration experiences K-12 and beyond and provide advice for what works and what doesn't work.

Topics include: where to go to find global partners; best collaborative tools to use; networks to join; ideas for curriculum development. This promises to be an energized and fun session for beginners as well as experienced global collaborators!


March 26: Twitter in the K-12 Classroom
Did you know that Twitter is an excellent tool for critical conversations about texts in and outside the classroom? Find out how the presenter cultivated a year-long Twitter book club with her eighth grade students to promote close reading, collaboration and critical conversations, and leave with new ideas for setting up educational Twitter activities of your own


April 2: Mobile Makerspaces and Fun STEM Activities for School Year and Summer Camp Programs
Learn how to incorporate STEM projects and hands-on activities into science and math while effectively integrating technology tools. Discover ideas for planning, organizing and implementing a schoolwide STEM program, STEM nights and STEM summer camps. Combine discovery, exploration, hands-on building activities and the design process. And find out how makerspace environments encourage students to collaborate and demonstrate creative thinking and problem solving while sparking their interest in science, technology, engineering and math.