Lovin’ the DEN!
Texas Discovery Educator Network Leadership Council
About the Texas DEN Leadership Council The Texas Discovery Educator Network Leadership Council is a group of volunteers who disseminate information to DEN STARs, plan events designed to inform and provide networking opportunities, and share! If you have questions about the Leadership Council or anything regarding your STAR status, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Texas DEN Leadership Council Chair, Elaine Plybon Events Coordinator, Linda Rush Blog Coordinator, Howard Martin For a complete list of council members, visit the Texas DEN Leadership Council website at https:// sites.google.com/site/texasdenlc/
New STARs shine in Texas!
We would like to welcome new STARs! Since the last issue, there have been no new STARs added in Texas. Let’s make a change before the next issue and recruit those technology-minded educators who would like to shine!
The Corner Chair … Can you believe it is 2011? Once again, the school year is flying by and some of our good intentions are being realized, while others keep getting put on a back burner.
Inside this issue: Upcoming Texas DEN Events
Texas DEN Contest Winner Announced
National DEN News
Meet Your Leadership 4 Council TCEA STARs
Girls of Technology
We want to know!
The new year brings exciting things for Texas. We have the firstever Talking Points Conference coming up on the 22nd in Irving, TCEA the first week of February in Austin, and exciting DEN events such as SciCon and the spring virtual conference.
We also have an exciting new name for the newsletter. It repreWill you be presenting at a conference? sents Texas, the DEN, and what it Do you have a technology tip you’d like means to be a STAR. to share? Texas Leadership Council wishes all of you a happy new year, full of Would you like to create a page to be everything you hope for. included in a newsletter? Have you won an award?
Write to us at email@example.com
- Elaine Plybon, Chair
Newsletter Contest Winner The Texas DEN Leadership Council sponsored a contest through the end of 2010 to find a name for our newsletter. The winner is Cindy Glenn from San Antonio, who suggested Lonestar Squared. You may have noticed the new logo on the cover and first page of the newsletter. Cindy will be receiving a Starbucks gift card for her creativity and participation! Thank you, Cindy!
What’s happening in Texas? Jan. 22—Talking Points Conference, Irving Jan. 22—SciCon in-person event, McKinney Jan. 23—Apple Store Event, Dallas
For more information about each of these events, see Page 6 of this newsletter or visit the Texas blog at http:// blog.discoveryeducation.com/ texas
February 7-11—TCEA February 8—DEN Pre-Con at TCEA
Texas STAR in Illinois? Elaine Plybon, chair of the Texas DEN LC, will be conducting a workshop at the Illinois Computing Educators (ICE) conference February 25. The workshop will focus on how to create engaging online, standards-based courses.
Do you know?
We can also include non-DEN events that you know of that might be of interest to Texas educators. If you know of any, please email information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
From the National DEN . . . The National DEN team is busy and traveling as the convention season enters full swing. They’ll be at TCEA in Texas, FETC and Florida, and PETE&C in Pennsylvania during just the first two weeks of February!
The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge has begun! Students in K-12 have the opportunity to make a difference and win prizes! Visit http:// www.wecanchange.com
for more details. February 15 marks the beginning of a new webinar series. Check the national blog for details.
.Are you more than a STAR? Last year, five STARs were chosen to be the first-ever DEN Gurus. Applications will open February 21 for those who would like the opportunity to be named this year. Gurus become contract trainers for Discovery.
Keep up-to-date with the latest news from the global DEN community by visiting http://blog.discoveryeducation.com Watch the Texas-specific blog at http://blog.discoveryeducatio.com/texas FOLLOW US ON TWITTER! http://www.twitter.com/TXDENLC
Schedule of Events 01-22-11—DEN SciCon 2011 (Global) 01-22-11—Talking Points (Irving, TX) 01-22-11—SciCon in-person (McKinney, TX) 01-23-11– Apple Store Event (Dallas, TX 02-1-11 through 02-3-11— FETC, Florida 02-8-11—TCEA Pre-Con 02-13-11 through 02-16-11— PETE&C, Pennsylvania 02-15-11 DEN Webinar series begins 02-21-11—DEN Guru applications open
Meet your leadership council: Kim Caise Kim Caise has been an educator and technology specialist for the past 20 years. She has degrees from the University of Texas at San Antonio and Western Governors University. Kim began her educational career teaching elementary grades and middle school math. She is a National Board Certified Teacher in Career and Technical Education. Kim has written and secured funding through
several national and local grants including the Best Buy TEACH award and the Basic School Network. She is a FableVision Ambassador and was nominated for the 2005 Disney Teacher of the Year Award. Kim has conducted numerous professional development sessions around the world. Kim lives in San Antonio with her husband, Marty, two Maltese dogs Mia and Max, and Nap-
ster, her orange tabby cat. Kim is a co-host of the Classroom 2.0 LIVE show that is broadcast in Elluminate on Saturday mornings. Kim is the Elluminate Community Facilitator and Flat Classroom Project Administrator. Kim serves on the blog team of the LC and is the webinar committee chair.
Meet your leadership council: Betsy Ruffin Currently an elementary librarian and technologist, Betsy Ruffin has had a varied educational career and seen many technology changes over her 30+ years of teaching. Starting with mimeograph machines and film strip projectors, she now works with online databases, laptop -projector setups, streaming video, and
more, along with traditional learning resources. In addition to her involvement with the Texas DEN LC, she helps teachers effectively use Discovery Streaming in their classrooms, is a field trainer for Thinkfinity, and works with librarians to integrate online learning and technology rich lessons into the curriculum, She has
presented workshops on a variety of technology topics across the state. She is involved with libraries and computers at her church as well and when she is not at school or church she enjoys being with her family and spoiling her two cats.
February in Austin means thousands of educators learning, networking, and creating. This is when the Texas Computer Education Association holds its annual technology conference. Educators from around the state attend to experience presentations, workshops, and keynote speakers from around the nation. This year, the theme of the conference is “No Limits: Technology Beyond Imagination”. It will be held February 7-11. There are several opportunities for sessions outside of the official TCEA conference, including a Discovery Educator Network pre-conference event on February 8 at the Bob Bullock Texas History Museum. There is no cost to attend the pre-conference event. Spaces fill quickly, so be sure to visit http://tcea2011.eventbrite.com/. For a complete catalog of sessions available, visit http://s36.a2zinc.net/clients/TCEA/2011/CUSTOM/sessions.pdf. You may also search the catalog at http://s36.a2zinc.net/clients/tcea/2011/public/Calendar.aspx?ID=544&tab=att &sortMenu=102003&MainMenuID=672. Your fellow Texas STARs are well-represented at the conference. If you would like to show your support for the Texas DEN, try to visit a few of the sessions being conducted by DEN STARs. Several have made their schedules available to us before the publication of this newsletter and those sessions are listed on the next page for a handy reference.
Schedule of Texas STAR presentations: Date of Session
Title of Session
Type of session
Social Networking in the Language Arts Classroom
Learning.com Together No Limits event
iPhoto Tools for Creative Projects
Moving into the Metaverse: Education in Virtual Worlds
Library Legos: putting the pieces together
Time session begins
Length of Session
all day event must pre register 3:30
late afternoon. 3 hours
1 1/2 hours
Web 2.0 Lounge
New Horizons in Education: The iPad Effect
Mary Carole Strother
Banking on Success with Glogster
To Infinity and Beyond: Facilitating and Managing a Collaborative Classroom
1 1/2 hours
Creativity and Innovation â€“ Meeting the New Tech Apps Standards
Wii Love to Read!!
Web 2.0 Lounge
Using Google Reader to Keep up with What's Happening in the World
Primary Technology: They Can Do It Too!
Extraordinary SMARTBoard Lesson Tricks
Making the Move to a Paperless Classroom
Web 2.0 Lounge
Recruitment and Retention of Girls in STEM
Irv ing School Uses Community to Recruit and Retain Girls in STEM
A few years ago, if you walked through the first floor halls of the Jack E. Singley Academy in Irving ISD, you might have noticed the lack of girls in the classrooms. On average, each classroom had only 1 (or fewer) girls. The first floor houses the STEM school of the Academy. Students can pursue several career pathways on this floor – aerospace engineering, computer networking and cabling, computer science, and mechanical engineering to name a few. Traditionally, girls do not choose careers in these STEM fields. This is not unique to this school, it is a national issue. The staff set out to change the numbers and through recruiting efforts, increased the numbers to 2-3 girls per classroom. This still wasn’t enough, and eventually, girls who had been recruited, would leave and pursue specialties on other floors. Beginning in August, 2010, two teachers and a vice-principal set out to make a bigger difference – not only in recruiting girls to these fields, but also to retain them and see them pursue STEM fields in college and careers. Because of their own experiences with communities, such as the professional learning communities at the school, one teacher’s experiences with the Discovery Educator Network, and other organizations, they thought they might be able to make a difference by giving the girls a community which would connect them to each other and keep them interested and excited about the careers that brought them to the Singley Academy. Elaine Plybon, Katie Crone, and Kacy Bankston organized the Girls of Technology (GOT), a community of girls who participate in luncheons with female speakers from industry, teambuilding events, and community service projects. Next, they looked for sponsors, and immediately, Texas Instruments provided a speaker and the funds for one of the luncheons. After two luncheons, a field trip, and a service project, the organization has already seen an increase in the number of girls who remain on the first floor. For more information, visit the GOT website at www.irvingisd.net/academy/got.