March 16, 2013
The classrooms at Charlottesville High School are usually empty on weekends but today their desks and chairs are filled with teachers.
"There are things that you know just a little tip, like the playlist thing in Youtube that I can take in on Monday morning and use," Walker Upper-Middle Elementary School Technology Resource Teacher, Katie Plunkett said after attending a YouTube workshop.
Hundreds of teachers from all across Virginia learned how to use Google apps as tools in the classroom. From how YouTube videos can be more effective than a hand-out, to how to break down a Google search.
Local teachers are experiencing the Google Summit weekend that's been around the world.
"No matter where you are, you see these engaged, excited teachers who are trying to do the same things for students, really focusing on learning," said Google Apps For Education Program Director, Molly Schroeder. "So whether you're here in Virginia or looking outside to New Zealand, it's the same caliber of educators who are really trying to transform student learning."
It was a day full of workshops, asking questions and absorbing the whole digital platform to be able to collaborate in a whole new way.
"Our teachers are able to collaborate with each other but also with students on projects and on classroom assignments like they never have before," said Stephanie Carter, Program Administrator for Virtual Education at Charlottesville City Schools.
In the sea of teachers who attended the summit at Charlottesville High School on Saturday, 45 of Charlottesville's own will have lots of new ideas for class next week.
"It doesn't have to be some big new software program it can just be something that small that you can be like' Wow that makes me more efficient or I can help my kids with that or use that with my students," Plunkett said.
And while students might be getting spring fever, Plunkett says it's the perfect time of year for teachers to start using a new and improved way to engage students right in their classrooms.