Tag Archive: Research

For the past two days I have been in Rodondo Beach, California at a conference for schools who are members of the Middle College National Consortium. This has been an amazing conference of principals, teachers, consultants, etc. who all want to design the very best schools in the nation. Their particular focus is on disadvantaged youth who may be the very first in their family to attend college. While this conference has been amazing in many key ways, I have been keeping a list of items that I am eager to research, design, and implement for TCS@ODU.
1.) Get flash drives for all students with a pre-loaded planner, syllabus, important school docs, etc. Students can also be expected to search out on-line (i.e. through Sakai, email, or Google docs) documents that have been shared with those students by the teacher. This could, potentially, save us thousands of dollars in printing, toner, and purchasing costs, if we do this just right.
2.) No more agenda printing for staff and professional development days. We can develop agendas in Google docs and share with the entire staff. The agenda can be displayed to the full staff through the projector. Over the course of the year, this might save us several reams of paper, which is significant environmentally and in our pocketbooks.
3.) Show the staff the connectivism presention on YouTube (see video embedded below). I think that there is some rich fodder for fantastic discussions about how we can, as a staff, encourage our students to use the technology in more meaningful and appropriate ways.
4.) Do mixed group training for technology. All teachers can benefit from each other’s expertise and viewpoints this way.
5.) Have students solve problems in a group as a ticket-in activity, or during the class period.
6.) Research step-by-step instructions. Work with students to develop step-by-step instructions/directions for how to research, how to write, and how to critique research papers.
7.) Do discipline integrated media literacy discussions and trainings with students. Do not compartmentalize the training because you risk students not being able to understand how to apply the skills and techniques that they have learned.
8.) If a student generates a solid question, kick the question back to the class and have them work on an answer as a small group. They can then report back. Students are more likely to remember any answer they come to, and the process for how to solve problems is honored.
9.) Problems should drive the technology. Sometimes we let technology drive technology and that only leads to problems.
10.) I am trying to think through a way of using Google docs, Drupal, and Buzzword to help digitally facilitate the Peer Review process that we use with our school’s staff.
11.) Search for and develop a master calendar feature that students can have on their flash drives, or in their Sakai profile, that allows them to quickly add dates and assignments. This is limited to technology, but there is a lot of promise.


Masters’ Research Presentation


This is Ed in Rush Run looking for L. maackii stumps.  Yup.  No joke.  Good times!  Actually, just trying to avoid poison ivy, mosquitos, and doing my best to work quickly so I can go home and get out of my sweaty clothes!

This is me in Rush Run ravine in Worthing, Ohio looking for L. maackii stumps. Yup. No joke. Good times! Actually, just trying to avoid poison ivy, mosquitos, and doing my best to work quickly so I can go home and get out of my sweaty clothes!



Earlier this evening I gave my exit presentation for my Masters of Science degree in the Environmental Science Graduate Program at The Ohio State University.  My research has taken place over the past year and it is centered around studying the removal efforts made by community groups in central Ohio ravines forests.  Specifically, I am studying the removal of Amur Honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii).  My PowerPoint presentation can be seen at the following URL:  Effectiveness of Lonicera maackii (Rupr.) Herder Removal Treatments in Olentangy River Ravine Forests in Central Ohio.  Since this is a Google conversion from PowerPoint, there are a few errors, but you get the idea.

I was told that the presentation went well but that I spoke too quickly.  When I told my Dad this, he said, “No kidding.”  I have been talking quick since I was a kid!  

I am nearly finished with my Masters’ work.  I have to present my thesis to my advisory committee and have my paper submitted to the graduate school for publication by the school.  I will then be able to walk across the stage to receive my diploma on March 22nd, 2009, four days before my 29th birthday.  

Despite myself, I have been very enamoured with this process and making sacrifices for it has been very easy.  Last night, for instance, I got three hours of sleep despite knowing that I had a full day of work ahead of me as well as this presentation at 4pm.  I just pounded it out and didn’t think twice about the sleep that I lost.  It’s a fascinating process and this is unlike anything else that I have ever experienced!  Don’t get me wrong, I cannot wait to be done so I can get back to sleep, reading books, playing games, and spending more time with my wife and my friends, but right now this is a unique experience and I’m trying to really soak it up and make it complete.  

I will post my thesis once it’s finished.  Right now it’s embarassingly incomplete, so I won’t waste time putting it up.  Eventually, however, I hope to have at least the abstract up (Not sure about university policy and information rights).

Have a great one!