Thursday, March 21, 2013

MacXpress moves to Google+

From now on we will be posting updates about MacXpress sessions on the Google+ ASIJ Learning Hub. If you haven't already joined our online professional learning community please follow the link and connect. We want to build it into a place where you can see what PD is happening both in and outside ASIJ, and where ideas about teaching and learning can be shared by everyone. 

I hope we can all get more comfortable with using online spaces. If you come across interesting articles or other PD opportunities please take a minute to share them on the Google+ ASIJ Learning Hub so others may benefit from your finds. Consider hitting the +1 on posts, or adding a comment or question on things you find interesting. Doing so is an easy way of giving and getting feedback.


Inspired by the Demo Slam model we saw at the Google Apps for Education Summit we have been inviting people to offer a 3 min Demo Slams at MacXpress (and during our HS Faculty meetings). They have been both fun and informative. It's surprising what can be shared in just 3 mins! We've learnt about phone apps that quickly scan and share documents, Chrome Extensions that enable us to split a screen between two windows, and how to combine Google Forms in a Sites right next to a Youtube video so students can easily peer review their work. Just to name a few.

This past Tuesday at MacXpress we tried something new. We used Google+ Hangouts to broadcast the Demo Slam. (We'll try this again after Spring Break.) If you can't make it to MacXpress on Tuesdays you may like to check out the Demo Slam recordings. This one is on, a site the 5th Grade teachers have been using. 

Thanks to everyone who has already done a Demo Slam. If you have ideas or suggestions please sing out. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

iPad Conference - Transforming Learning

On February 9-10, 12 of our teachers and two administrators attended the iPad conference in Shekou.

The iPad has given us the unprecedented ability to connect, create and share with the world.  When aligned with sound pedagogy, this device has the potential to transform student learning experiences, anytime, anywhere.  This workshop explored the tangible ways in which the iPad is redefining teaching and learning.

Focus Areas:
  • The Apple Ecosystem
  • Discoverability of content
  • Supporting Literacy & Numeracy
  • Catering for the diverse needs of learners
  • Creating with the iPad
  • Learning with the iPad:  From Substitution to Redefinition
What did you learn about?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Japan ASCD’s TIOM (Try It On Monday) will be held at Nishimachi International Schoolon Saturday, April 27th, 2013.

WHAT IS TIOM? Try IT On Monday is a one-day ‘technology in education’ event held each year. Classroom teachers offer one-hour workshops on practical classroom use of technology.The goal of each workshop is for participants to walk away with new ideas that they can "try on Monday".

Now in our sixth year, this event continues to grow in popularity amongst schools in the area.
In connecting our various school communities within the framework of professional development, bonds are further strengthened by the lasting connections that are fostered in the online professional learning network, NING.

As in previous years, Japan ASCD will offer TIOM Award.You can win a 10,000 yen Amazon gift card. The prize will be given to the person who made blog posts relevant to the education on the TIOM member's NING ( can also post photos and videos that you will take during the event.This challenge will be continued for a month after the event. Japan ASCD will choose a person on Saturday, May 18th.
TIOM presenters bring a wide range of experience and share their innovative IT and practical teaching ideas with other fellow educators. If you would like to share your passion for teaching technology by presenting at the TIOM, please send your name and contact information to TIOM Coordinator, Kiyotaka Horii at 
This workshop is FREE and Nishimachi will provide refreshments and lunch. We hope to see you on Saturday,April 27th!

Please go to and click on the green Ning button in the upper right-hand corner to visit our TIOM page.
Visit Try IT On Monday at:

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Reflections from the GAFE Summit

While there's buzz about the Google Apps Summit - please share your learnings with your colleagues.

What did you learn about at the GAFE Summit? - and How might you use this with your students?

What ideas might you like to share with others?  and What would you like to learn about now? 

Please comment on this post to add your thoughts.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

This story is the final in a six part editorial series exploring the balance between student learning and job skills. We're asking leaders and thinkers in education and technology fields: Can America educate its way out of the skills gap? This series is brought to you by GOOD, with support from Apollo Group. Learn more about our efforts to bridge the skills gap at Coding for GOOD.

What if I were to tell you that you could learn more about how to solve the skills gap from a dating site than from a quantitative international study?
As a systems designer at IDEO, I'm always looking for innovative ways to go about understanding and framing problems. Notwithstanding the conflation of issues found in discussions about a skills gap, if we take it head on as a challenge, "design thinking" provides a fresh lens and three useful problem solving techniques.
The first technique is using analogous illustrations as a source for critical problem solving. Understanding the dynamics of similar challenges in an entirely different context can provide insights otherwise overlooked by experts. Who would think the solution to making emergency room procedures more effective would come from observing the best practices of a NASCAR pit crew? (It actually did).

Sunday, January 27, 2013

The week university (as we know it) ended 


For many years I’ve been writing about how the Internet and new models of pedagogy will bring an end to the university’s monopoly on higher education.
Nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come.
It’s happening right now. We may even remember this week as the turning point. If there is one issue that is buzzing through Davos like a prairie fire among thoughtful people, it’s that the time has finally come to reinvent higher learning.