MAY 2017
Your monthly news & updates
Welcome to the May edition of the ICE Newsletter. This month we are focused on continuing professional development through the summer. As you'll see, we have listed a number of great opportunities. In addition, more ideas will be shared at our monthly #ICEilchat so be sure to attend!

We are honored this month to have special guests, Tom Murray (#ICE16) and Eric Sheninger (#ICE17) Keynote Speakers, provide us with some insight into their new book, Learning Transformed: 8 Keys to Designing Tomorrow's Schools, Today Tom and Eric have provided a glimpse into their book and how professional learning, the ICE newsletter theme this month, must have a personal and relevant approach to be successful. Our goal for ICE members is to create those personal and relevant opportunities for each and every educator.  

We wish you the best as your school year comes to a close and hope to see you at some of these outstanding professional development opportunities throughout the summer!
Amber Heffner
ICE Executive Director
Upcoming Events
Google Boot Camp  - WICE area
June 6-7th, 2017

WIT Con  - entICE area
June 14-16th, 2017

June 14th, 2017
9:00 AM

June 15-16th, 2017

Thursday, June 15, 2017 - 
8:00am to 3:30pm
Morton Arboretum

June 19-23rd, 2017
July 10-14th, 2017
July 17-21st, 2017

June 19th, 2017 
9:00 AM

June 21st, 2017
8:00 AM

June 27th, 2017
8:00 AM

July 27th, 2017
8:00 AM to 12:00 PM

July 31st-August 1st, 2017

May 25th #ICEILchat will focus on Summer PD

Join us for our next ICE Twitter Chat - #ICEilchat! On Thursday, May 25th from 8pm - 9pm, Kim Darche and Rick McCall, ICE's Professional Development Co-Chairs will be chatting about how to keep your learning rocking and rolling over the summer. We will share our favorite summertime conferences, podcasts and books and more! Oh and speaking of books, well let’s just say there might be a surprise or two as to how to get some PD over the summer through ICE online. 

Don’t know how to Twitter Chat but always wanted to try? This is the chat for you! Stay and observe or jump right in. Here is a great resource for you "How to Participate in a Twitter Chat". 

Check out a few of the questions, we will be asking: 

What is your favorite way to grow professionally over the summer months?
What Podcast do you enjoy?
Are you attending any conferences this summer?

Be sure to join us this Thursday, May 25th at 8pm CST #ICEilchat

Learning Transformed
Learning Transformed
Authors: Thomas C. Murray and Eric C. Sheninger
2016 and 2017 ICE Keynotes

Having both had the opportunity to keynote the ICE conference over the past two years, you’ve heard each of us emphasize the value of high quality professional learning as the vehicle to drive shifts in instructional pedagogy. In our upcoming book, Learning Transformed, published by ASCD and shipping next week, we highlight 8 Keys to Designing Tomorrow’s Schools, Today. One of these keys ties directly to ICE’s theme this month on professional learning:

Key #5: Professional learning must be relevant, engaging, ongoing,  and made personal.

Guided by the effective research on professional learning which we cover in our chapter on the topic, we’ve uncovered a myriad of strategies and effective techniques for school leaders to utilize when redesigning - or upgrading - professional learning in their school or district. In one section, entitled, "Shifting Practice to Shift Culture," we share some indicators - and red flags that can be used when analyzing the effectiveness of your professional learning ecosystem.

Tom and Eric

Shifting Practice to Shift Culture
(Excerpt from Learning Transformed, ASCD, 2017)

“You can’t add value to people if you don’t value people.”

- John Maxwell  

We believe that a relationship can be seen between the quality and the types of professional learning experiences offered. In traditional professional learning models, teachers are given few, if any, opportunities for input or feedback, experiences are typically passive, and the instructional approach of the development is counter-intuitive to high-quality learning. In these settings, teachers are often herded like cattle into large group rooms and talked at for hours at a time for a contracted number of hours per year.

Evidence of a traditional professional learning model:

• Decreased teacher attendance on in-service days.

• The experience is fully planned by administration in a top-down approach, with little to no teacher involvement.

• The experience is designed with a one-size-fits-all approach.

• A mass exodus occurs when the required time is up.

• There is little opportunity for teacher feedback on the experience.

• Professional learning is viewed as a set number of hours or calendar days per year.

• Accountability is measured in hours—not in progress or outcomes over time.

• Supervision conversations focus on experiences attended and hours earned—not on the transformation of instructional pedagogy.

• Professional learning is viewed solely as a district responsibility.

In this type of model, teachers can be left feeling as if they are just a pawn in game where they have no control. Mention the words professional development time in these schools and you’ll see eyes roll and hear painful groans throughout the faculty room. School leaders often give or are assigned to give the directions for the experience and are rarely seen growing alongside the teachers. During traditional professional learning time, responsibility for the ownership of the learning often rests with the person planning and leading the experience. Culturally, this method can easily create an “us-versus-them” mindset and attitude within the staff, negatively affecting school culture.

A more personal and relevant approach to professional learning, however, can have a positive effect on a school’s culture. In these settings, ownership for the learning is assumed by everyone, with school leaders feeling an inherent responsibility to model the way.

Evidence of a personal professional learning model:

• School leaders model the desired growth outcomes.

• Professional learning is viewed as something that is ongoing and systemic.

• Diverse, high-quality opportunities are readily available.

• All learning experiences, both formal and informal, are respected and seen as growth opportunities.

• Internal capacity is built as teachers have various opportunities to lead.

• Ample opportunities exist for both teacher and administrative feedback on experiences.

• Administrators and teachers take advantage of opportunities regardless of the obtainment of hours or need for additional pay.

• Teachers have a voice in planning.

• Accountability is measured in outcomes and growth over time—not in hours earned.

• Supervision conversations focus on transformation in instructional pedagogy—not on the attendance at particular events.

• Professional learning is viewed as a district and personal responsibility.

When this type of learning culture exists, staff buy-in takes care of itself, and staff members are a vital part of the planning and carrying out of the experiences. All staff have the opportunity to lead, and a growth mindset becomes apparent. In this type of culture, districts balance the need to focus on districtwide initiatives with the understanding that, just like students, teachers have various levels of need and thus require a more personal approach. When teachers feel as if they are a vital part of the professional learning cycle, then increased ownership for the learning occurs—creating a culture shift in responsibility and passion.

You are part of the solution.


For more on Tom and Eric’s upcoming book, visit: Here’s what a few educational leaders had to share about next week’s release:

" essential read for those looking to empower students, staff, and community as they help create a system that changes the world of education….”  -  Joe Sanfelippo, 2017 ICE Keynote

“...a compelling manifesto for the schools our children need now and an inspirational blueprint for how to bring them about." - Sir Ken Robinson

"...Rarely has a book provided so many compelling evidence-rich strategies, as shared through the lenses of leading practitioners, to empower educators to redesign the learning experience..." - Arne Duncan

"...a handbook to implement actionable, sustainable change in schools so today's students can thrive in tomorrow's world." - Linda Darling-Hammond

"...Read this book to be enlightened and to put fun, excitement, and real learning back into your school or classroom." - Daniel H. Pink

"...a well-grounded, scholarly book that links theory, research, practical strategies, and evidence to move schools forward..." - Robert J. Marzano

TECH 2017
Over 300 students and teachers from 92 districts across Illinois shared examples and stories of innovative uses of technology and digital learning during TECH 2017, ICE’s annual advocacy event held at the State Capitol Building in Springfield. 

Governor Rauner, Dr. Purvis, Senator Hastings, and Representative Unes shared opening remarks in support of technology’s role in transforming education, preparing students for college and careers, and addressing equity gaps across Illinois. Their sentiments were echoed by the many state representatives and senators that visited with students throughout the day.

Though we appreciated the substantial support from legislators, the true highlight of the day was the students who engaged their elected officials, inviting them to see meaningful learning through a student’s perspective. Kindergarten students from Judith Giocoma Elementary School proudly displayed their digital stories; seventh grade students from Kelvin Grove Middle School taught legislators math, history and engineering through 3D printing; eighth grades from Hellen Keller Junior High School used snap circuits to prove the first law of thermodynamics; and eleventh and twelfth grade students from William J. Bogan Computer Technical High School spoke about their student created and led makerspace. 

Examples of innovation abound in our schools, and as we look forward to the next school year, we also look forward to sharing even more stories of digital learning, empowered students, and future ready classrooms.

Stay Tuned For...
We want to thank our 2017 ICE Corporate Partners for their support.
Illinois Computing Educators | 630-628-1088 |