What’s Your Story?
Have you ever discovered a new idea, practice, or tech tool from a MassCUE conference session that you tried out in your classroom with great success? Or, met someone at a MassCUE event who has changed your approach to teaching? Or, expanded your professional learning network through a MassCUE Twitter chat? MassCUE has had an impact on so many across the state of Massachusetts and beyond…What impact has MassCUE had on you? What’s YOUR story? We would love to hear! Submit your story as a written post or a video* to be featured on our MassCUE website and social media channels.
*Videos may be shared via link in the form below on a platform such as YouTube, Google Drive or DropBox.
Need some inspiration? Check out the amazing stories below!
MassCUE Board Member: Erin’s Story
MassCUE Board Member: Jen’s Story
MassCUE Board Member: TJ’s Story
MassCUE Board Member: Steve’s Story
MassCUE Board Member: Colleen’s Story
MassCUE Board President-Elect: Heidi’s Story
MassCUE Board President: Chris’s Story
MassCUE Executive Director: Savvy’s Story
Google Certified Educators Jen Thomas and Johanna Wilson led a cohort of 35 instructional coaches in a MassCUE Google Certified Coach program over six months during the 2021-22 school year.
Our program uses a Google curriculum with strategies and tools designed to help coaches have more meaningful interactions with teachers so that they can apply technology in their classrooms more purposefully. Working together in a cohort over a period of months, we were able to go through it bit by bit. Our regular virtual meetings were super valuable because they gave us the opportunity to really talk about how important it is to build relationships with teachers and share ideas on how to do that. The pace was perfect and we (the coaches) were learning right alongside the participants.
For me, the cohort is such a great support system. It is almost like a therapy think tank! We are able to apply what we were learning, refine it, get ideas from our cohort and try different things. We are all coaches, but having representatives from different grade levels and different situations was a real benefit as well. This program is at the foundation of what coaches do: developing relationships and providing support. I would love to see MassCUE offer more PD for coaches!
The cohort model is the best part of this program for me. In our schools we are the lone wolf – the only instructional coach. It was so great to have a group of other coaches to lean on. I truly looked forward to seeing the group every month in our meetings. We were able to get our frustrations out, but we were focused on solutions. We talked about how we can move forward with all of the adversity coming at us. I left meetings feeling lighter and more hopeful. With some forms of PD, it can be difficult to take the time to digest what I’ve learned. I’m spending so much time putting out fires. Working together with a cohort felt more substantial and meaningful. A huge focus of the group was about building relationships and trust with teachers. Coaches are there to support them. We talked a lot about the people skills that go beyond the tools. When the program came to an end, we weren’t ready to say good bye! Our cohort is looking into a book study or some other training so we can stick together and continue this great support system.
MassCUE Board Member: Erin’s Story
When I started my new role as an Assistant Professor of Learning Technology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2014, I was fortunate to connect with two incredibly brilliant and talented colleagues – Dr. Robert (Bob) Maloy and Dr. Sharon Edwards. During my second year at UMass Amherst, Bob and I co-authored a grant proposal to develop a 3D printing community of practice for local teachers. As we started collecting some of the first ever data on K-12 teachers’ use of 3D printers in their classrooms, Bob suggested that we apply to present the data at MassCUE. Coming from California, I was familiar with CUE, but I had never heard of MassCUE. Once Bob told me that the conference was at the stadium where the Patriots play, I was sold! Of course, little did I know that the stadium “wow factor” was just the beginning. The first MassCUE conference that I attended was packed with so many incredible sessions and people and ideas. I left the conference re-energized and inspired to incorporate more technologies and student-centered teaching practices into my work. Ever since then, I have applied to present at MassCUE and attended every year. And every year I am pleasantly surprised with how much I discover and can take back to my students and colleagues. From the little things, like Google chrome extensions that make life as a teacher easier, to the bigger things, like how to design with accessibility in mind, I have learned so much from MassCUE over the years. The impact that MassCUE has had on me is immeasurable!