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Lisa Timmerman’s TAGT Experience 2011

January 17, 2012

TAGT Conference

November 30- December 2, 2011

Lisa Timmerman


My main “take-away” idea from this year’s conference is that I MUST TWITTER!  I’ve been very interested in getting this started, but always move it further down on my to-do list. However, the idea that convinced me came during the general session and was to use Twitter to keep parents informed on a more current basis. Often after a productive learning day, I consider emailing the parents of that grade level a progress update, but never quite follow through since I try to be as sensitive as possible about the amount of email correspondence they already receive from the school. With a Twitter account, they could choose to follow the daily happenings of our lessons. I also am hyper-zealous in uploading pictures of the kids on my class website, but I know as a parent, it’s difficult to remember to check for updated pictures on the teacher’s site.

21st Century Literature Circles:

This session increased my interest for having optional book clubs for my Challenge students. The presenters introduced me to Wikis as a safe mini-website for the kids to use for blogging their reflections on their current reading. They also had a really strong understanding of using technology in authentic ways, rather than just making a cute final project. Technology ideas included Animoto for book trailers and Taxegdo for theme.  I have since broached the topic with my Challenge third graders, sharing only the partial idea of a website they can post reflections and discuss books and several of them actually clapped their hands!

Ian Byrd- Inspire Curiosity and Increase Complexity in Math:

This one was my favorite since I’m a current website stalker of Mr. Byrd’s. At least once a week I use something from his website He’s amazing at creating real-world projects while using popular themes, including holidays. While I was already familiar with many of the ideas he presented, it was invaluable to me to be able to see and hear him speak in person. The idea I will use first is cooperative exploration, which was used in a vocabulary lesson and has the students work backward from the definition to acquire the vocabulary word. I will also utilize his phrase of “hardest five” as a suggestion for my classroom cluster teachers to shorten the task of pre-assessments.

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