Digital Learning Coach Libby Ferrell collaborated with SLMC Shanna Leonard to launch the Digital Learning Challenge to Southmont Elementary. Thanks to Libby for sharing this blog post and Shanna for sharing the pictures.
Yesterday Southmont teachers met to learn about the new digital learning challenges for 2019 on the school’s Digital Learning Challenge website. Last year Southmont rolled out the digital learning challenge website to encourage the use of digital tools. We created the website using Weebly to include all the necessary information teachers would need to learn and implement new digital tools.
For this year, Shanna had the great idea to include some prizes for challenge completion including: a jeans coupon, an order out coupon, and raffle entries for a new iPad case. She also made sure we kicked off the challenges in a fun way by providing cake and snacks for teachers before the meeting.
We explained that the digital learning challenge website operates as “flipped professional development”; it’s flexible and teachers can choose to learn about any of the tools featured that fit best into their curriculum and for their students. For each tool we include: a brief synopsis of what the tool is, an explanation of how the tool can be used, lesson ideas, and instructions on how to get started using the tool.
Each challenge requires teachers to submit evidence or an artifact showing that they have utilized the tool. Once they submit their evidence, they earn a challenge badge and an hour of digital learning credit.
Last year 100% of Southmont’s classroom teachers met the school’s goal of completing 3 digital learning challenges. Sixty percent of teachers surpassed this goal by completing more than three challenges and as a school, teachers earned almost 90 hours in digital learning credit since the program debuted.
Schools have participated in similar app challenge programs to encourage staff and students to utilize technology tools for teaching and learning. Here are the things we’ve learned to make it run smoothly:
This program has been a great way for media coordinators, digital learning coaches, and teachers to collaborate and learn from each other. Several elementary schools have adopted this program with great success. My hope is that in the future we can begin to introduce this program (or something similar) in more of our secondary schools. It has been a blast!
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