Saturday, September 21, 2002

The 2002 Educator-In-Residence Program: PeachStar and GA Educators Spend the Summer Learning Together

This summer, PeachStar expanded on last year's Teacher-In-Residence program with the 2002 Educator-In-Residence program, a five-week undertaking designed to provide Georgia educators with the highest quality professional development at no cost. Drawing teachers from all across the state of Georgia, this program provided an opportunity for teachers affected by last year's professional development cutbacks to earn the SDU credits required to maintain their certification while learning about important topics such as:

* Media Specialist Skills;
* Beginning Multimedia Integration;
* Video Production;
* Advanced Multimedia Integration; and
* Annenberg Professional Development Facilitator Training

The program began in mid-June with a group of twenty media specialists with three years or less experience who came to PeachStar for the Institute for New Media Specialists to learn more about their changing roles and responsibilities. A second group of media specialists came in July, for a total of 40 new media specialists who received training at PeachStar this summer! While here, these new media specialists worked with experienced media specialists who served both as mentors for participants and discussion leaders. Using A Handbook for Georgia School Library Media Specialists as a guide, participants learned about standards and policies that affect Georgia media centers; professional organizations to be familiar with; the kind of equipment necessary in a cutting edge media center; program development; and the services and resources available to them as media specialists. By the time the workshop ended, each participant developed his or her own personal philosophy and mission statement to govern the media center, bringing shape to the way he or she approaches the task of being a media specialist.

PeachStar held two workshops about the integration of multimedia into the curriculum, one for beginners and one for more advanced learners. Skills covered ranged from Internet navigation skills and downloading to preparing dynamic multimedia lesson plans using PowerPoint. Participants also learned the ins and outs of video streaming and how to select curricula most appropriate for multimedia integration. By the end of the workshop, each participant had created his or her own PowerPoint lesson plan that demonstrated the effective integration of technology and curriculum to be used in the classroom!

Two lucky groups of educators got to come to the GPB facility to learn about video production under the tutelage of expert PeachStar and GPTV professionals. While here, participants worked with real equipment to learn the fundamentals of video production, including overviews of production, directing, set design, lighting, audio aspects, graphics, and editing. Participants concluded their learning experience by producing their own video using all of the skills learned throughout the workshop!

The final group to join PeachStar for our Educator-In-Residence program focused on the knowledge and skills needed to facilitate the Annenberg Professional Development Series we air for educator professional development. This group participated in lectures and website exploration, becoming familiar with the Annenberg program and learning how to use it most effectively for onsite school-focused professional development.

Every one of the participants we've heard from has had nothing but praise for PeachStar's 2002 Educator-In-Residence program. Here's what a few of them had to say:

Laurie Dawson, Thomas County - Beginning Multimedia Integration
Laurie expressed her thanks for all that PeachStar "staff did to make this possible" for Georgia educators like herself. She also said she "liked the fact that along with the wealth of information we received, there was ample time to work and explore what we learned on our own with assistance at hand if needed."

Leslie Nissen, Savannah-Chatham County - Advanced Multimedia Integration
Leslie was really "thrilled" to learn more about multimedia integration. She told us she "appreciated being able to spend time fleshing out an idea, and creating an activity for school that might have stayed on the backburner for months otherwise."

Ellen Murphy, Decatur County - Annenberg Professional Development
Ellen told us that her visit here to the GPB facility showed her "how powerfully" our mission to provide high quality educational resources matches the mission of Georgia teachers to "inform and educate Georgia's children." She went on to say that "what I really like is that you [PeachStar] listen and then you respond" to what Georgia educators say they need to support them in the classroom.

Betty Walden, Savannah-Chatham County
- Video Production
Betty told us that this was "one of the best workshops I've ever been to! The staff was wonderful" I got a ton of ideas for lighting, backdrops, props, etc. The most important thing, though, was that it regenerated my enthusiasm!"

Wayne Clark, Dublin City - Institute for New Media Specialists As a brand new media specialist, Wayne found this workshop particularly helpful. -This has really helped me know all of the aspects of the support that is available from GPTV and PeachStar."