Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Moonshots and More: Thoughts from the (Redondo!) Beach

I have had the good fortune to be able to join the EdtechTeam for a few events over the past several months but after the past few days in Redondo Beach working with a district moving 1:1 I had a realization.  

The team of individuals that put on these events are some of the most inspiring and amazing educators I have been around.  

Jason shares Chrome tips and tricks to Redondo Beach Unified School District Teachers.
Often, when education conferences or professional development is put on it is so structured and rigid that it only serves the attendees that happen to fit perfectly into the mold...  Does that sound familiar?

This reminds me too much of what our students face all too often, our expectation that our students all need the same thing and so we package it in a standard form hoping they fit into that mold.  Often we hear teachers and students both complain about these situations but let’s face it, it’s hard to do better.  It’s not the easy approach to be agile and responsive based on individual needs.

What I see at every event with this group is a relentless approach to making sure everyone is served where they are and with what they need.  It might mean changing the schedule, working with individuals more, or just throwing out the plan all together and sitting and talking about what the learners need.

When the approach is focused on the learner and not just a preconceived notion that impact can be dramatic.  Working for two straight days with a few hundred teachers from Redondo Beach it was truly remarkable to see faces and attitudes shift from anxiety and even panic around 1:1 to truly understanding the potential that leveraging technology can have for their students.  

What I’m always most excited about in situations like this is that these teachers will start to see beyond the tools and through to the possibilities of thinking bigger than just doing things with technology; making the shift to thinking about those moon shot ideas that can take their students’ learning to a whole new place.

 At the end of the event a group of about 40 Redondo Beach teachers stayed around almost an hour after a long two days of learning to share their reflections and thoughts, I have no doubt that I will be learning from this group next year!


  1. Their staff was extremely professional and went out of their way to be very nice to me. I actually will be writing them a personal letter to thank them for a wonderful job performance all around!

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