Posts Tagged ‘gafe’

My 1st time teaching teachers

As teachers, we always teach students. I have taught students from kindergarten all the way to Grade 8 during my 7 year career as a teacher. Teaching teachers is new to me though.

I began this journey since I want to become a Google trainer. I have done some training through my youtube how to videos but I thought before applying to be a Google trainer I should teach some teachers in real life.


I transferred schools and noticed that teachers in my new school only use gmail in GAFE and I wanted to share how amazing and powerful these tools are. I sent out an email containing a Google form and asked which Google apps they would be interested in learning about. After their feedback I set up a time where most people could come, and a schedule.

Last Tuesday was our first training that focused on Gmail. I noticed that teachers are just like students. They have questions, they want to try out their learning right away, and they need one on one help and guidance sometimes. I also really noticed that teachers just like students learn at their own pace and the trainer needs to follow the flow of the audience. My group started working on making labels so we didn’t get to finish my training. It was fine because they were excited about it.

Excited to train them all about Google Drive next Tuesday!

Starting the Google Trainer Process

This past summer I started my journey of becoming a Google Educator. I had a hard time with the exams, just because I struggle with exams in general. To see my advice on how to pass you Google Educator exams, click the link.

I met James Peterson at the 2013 Edcamp Ottawa. We got along great right away and I asked him to help me with my Google sites. I chatted online with him many times through Canadian Edchat (@cdnedchat) and when I attended GAFE Ottawa Summit I got the chance to meet his friend Chris Webb (@Crippit). These guys together are so fun, so geeky (I mean that in the best way), and so insanely smart.

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A picture of us and the amazing Emily Fitzpatrick at the GAFE Ottawa Summit.

At the GAFE Ottawa Summit, I decided to follow them around all day trying to learn as much as I could from them. After the GAFE Ottawa Summit they decided to come to Edcamp Ottawa 2014 and again made such an impact on everyone’s learning around them. They even encouraged me to apply for a Google Trainer position.

B17kqu2CQAIzKCnThe boys and I at Edcamp Ottawa.

After Edcamp, I went home encouraged to apply to become a Google Educator. As I started my application I realized that I never have done any real Google training. I have helped teachers problem solve or quickly show them neat tricks for google but never a real training session.

I decided that my goal for this year would be to do some trainings in my school and help teachers use GAFE better professionally and with their students. I created a Google Form and am currently collecting information about when and what they want to learn about. I’m excited for this next step and I’m hoping to apply to become a Google Trainer in the next application process.

Blogging as a Teaching Portfolio

I was so lucky to be able to attend the first Bilingual and the biggest ever GAFE Summit in Ottawa this past weekend. I got to hear the incredible George Couros deliver an emotional keynote and see him present a session about blogging as a teaching portfolio.


He talked about having a blog as a teacher to show your learning that happens day to day and to showcase your talents. In order to blog, you need to really think what you are writing about, interact with it and therefore thoroughly understand the subject. A blog as a teacher is a great way to ask questions, brainstorm, and try out new ideas.

The new trend in education is to get students to blog about their learning. I’m trying it out this year for the 1st time with my first and second graders. In order for us to get students to blog, you need to learn to do it yourself. You are their role model and you can’t ask them to do something that you aren’t willing to try out yourself. Learning to write is really important but there are so many other ways for students to demonstrate their learning. They can make videos, take pictures, or make podcasts. All of these are ways to document their learning and are so powerful when the student sees how they have improved.

Tips for Blogging as a Teaching Portfolio:

  • Images are more powerful that words
  • Tag your posts using your Standards of Practice
  • Include your name in the post or tag it to increase SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
  • Gather kind tweets, emails, notes… for your blog

Amy Bowker, Teacher

Gafe Summit Ottawa

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Well the GAFE Summit has come and gone. What an amazing 2 days of learning and connecting. I absolutely loved meeting people I follow on twitter face to face and connecting more with educators I admire and respect.

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Me, Crystal Lake (@clake04), Sue Scott (@inspire_peace72)

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James Petersen (@jpetersen02), Emily Fitzpatrick (@ugdsb_missfitz), Chris Webb (@Crippit), Shauna Pollock (@misspollock), Tiiu Tsao (@tiiut), and me

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me, James Petersen (@jpetersen02),  Chris Webb (@Crippit), and Emily Fitzpatrick (@ugdsb_missfitz)

I learned so much for the sessions and from others and I’m so excited that there will be another GAFE Summit next year on October 17th and 18th 2015. Make sure you save the date.

Most details posts to come after I take a nap.