#dcsdtransforms Episode 20: How NOT to Cancel a Hotel Room

Welcome back for another exciting episode of #dcsdtransforms! This week, we will be showcasing the Replay app and Keynote. Our shoutouts go to Sandra White at DCIT and Ruth Taylor at MHS. We also are thrilled to give a long distance shoutout to Justin Schleider who listens to our podcast all the way from the great state of New Jersey! Thanks for listening, Justin!

Looking Within to Move Forward


The other day I was a part of a extremely uncomfortable yet extremely rewarding conversation.  I’ll admit that I can occasionally become defensive – doubly so with people that I am protective of.  People who have put their trust in me – who have supported me in my hopes…my vision.

In our conversation, we were analyzing the effectiveness of a particular group, and people got REALLY defensive. Throughout our conversation I began thinking to myself, “How many times do we not address problems because of our refusal to be reflective? And because of our refusal to reflect, we stay stuck in the same rut….unable to move forward?”

Unfortunately, I think the answer is “too many times…”, which is really sad.  In this world, you can not afford to be stagnate.  Things are changing at a rapid pace, so we must do the same.  And in these ever changing times, things are going to get uncomfortable, how can they not?  ‘Growing pains’ as my grandma used to say.

But if we’re in it for the right reasons: to improve the lives of our children and develop students that are life long learners and productive adults in their society – then we have no other choice.

We have to look beyond our feelings of defensiveness, fear of inadequacies, and sometimes just plain stubbornness and/or laziness so that we can move forward to providing better learning environments for our kids!  I see no other option.


Until the next time,

#dcsdtransforms Episode 19: Better Late than Never

We promise to get this episode to you every Thursday, but we never promised a time – so how about 10:45 PM Thursday night? Better late than never, eh? This week, we are sharing iMovie and Google Sites. Our shout-outs go to Mindy Kimrey of DHS and Brittany Adams, Wardie Sanders, and Jonathan Skaris of HHS. We’d love for you to join us this week for some good tech conversations!

The Importance of Providing Unique Experience for Students


Google Expeditions stopped by here! *drops mic*

When I found out about the Google Expeditions Pioneer Program, I was extremely skeptical that out students would get the opportunity in little old Darlington, SC.  So I was beyond ECSTATIC when the emails started rolling in.  After looking at our options, we were able to provide this experience to students in six schools.

And what an experience it was!  Can I just say, “My tail is TIRED!” 🙂 But despite that, I would do it all over again.

Before we got started with a session, I’d say to the kids, “You know…..we may go to Egypt today…..we may visit the moon…..we might even swim with the sharks…all without leaving your seat.  The looks on their faces….the excitement….the wonder….

The “Oooohhhhh” that I heard a million times each day, brought pure joy to my heart.  The students were engaged, they were excited, they whined when their time was up.  And each and every time, I heard it, I thought to myself, “This is what I live for.  This is why it’s important to provide unique experiences for our students.”  But the teachers were rejuvenated as well.  I could see the wheels turning in their heads….how amazing would this experience be if we could use this with our lessons? We study biomes in Science, but then to actually experience it…..the VR experience is so much MORE than just looking at pictures in a book.

We sometimes take for granted what our students have access to – or what they’ll even eventually experience.  So many of the students in my school district have never even been to the beach – and it’s only 90 miles away.

Something that resonated with me from our district Design Team’s visit to Albermarle County. “All Means All”  It is important to provide these experiences for ALL of our children.  Not just the affluent ones….not just the gifted ones…ALL OF THEM.

I definitely commend the principals whose schools were involved.  We are in the middle of MAP season (standardized computer test) and it would have been easy for them to say, “We just can’t fit it into our schedule.”  But each of them worked with me to make sure that we could provide this opportunity with very little turn around time. Each time we needed to make an adjustment, they said, “We’ll make it work.” And they did.

It is imperative that we redesign school for 21st Century learning.  No more of this “sit and git”….and yes I mean “git”….I’m a Southern girl after all.  Sometimes we WILL have to inconvenience ourselves for the greater good.  And in every situation, every opportunity, every day….ALL MEANS ALL.

Until the next time,


Digital Learning Day 2016

I distinctly remember being disappointed last year for Digital Learning Day because I was in a professional development session and wouldn’t be able to actively participate.

This year, I knew I not only wanted to participate, but I wanted it our district to participate en masse.  Thanks to my dear colleague and friend Sarah (@sarahdateechur), the DCSD Digital Learning Challenge was born!

Sarah’s school district created a site with a list of options for teachers and I “borrowed” that idea as well!

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I was excited see that we had extremely active participation!  Hopefully, we will get even more next time.  To celebrate the work that our teachers and students did, I created this Smore.  Enjoy!

Until the next time,

#dcsdtransforms Episode 18: Carla’s Tire

Welcome back for another exciting episode of #dcsdtransforms! This week we are showcasing Zoom and Edublogs. Shoutouts go to Jamie Horton of HHS and Rich Wideman and the track coaching staff of DHS. Wait, you’re giving a shoutout to an athletic program? What in the world for? Guess you’ll have to listen and find out!