Wednesday, February 29, 2012

20 Questions: a simple PD Activity

While scanning my twitter stream, I came across a tweet requesting assistance from Cathy Koos (@ckoos1). Cathy is the LS Head at Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy in Melbourne, FL and she was looking for someone who would be willing to essentially play 20 questions with her faculty.   I was intrigued by the request for several reasons. First, the request was coming from a division head, second, it was a PD activity that modeled an activity that could be applied in many areas, and lastly it was an activity that illustrated that the division head was willing to take a risk in front of her faculty in an effort to broaden their experiences. It took me a few seconds to recognize that this was a worthwhile request so I quickly responded and let Cathy know that I would be more than happy to participate.


The activity itself is quite simple. Using Skype, I was brought into the meeting, introduced, and the faculty was briefed on the guidelines. Please ask our mystery guest yes/no questions in order to determine his location(city).  This was simple and brilliant!  The teachers were engaged, they formulated better questions as they were trying to hone in on my they worked together, they used a pretty basic web app, and they had fun doing it.  As I recall, it didn't take 20 questions but does that really matter?  
Going forward

I had so much fun with this activity that I shared it with a teacher friend of mine via Facebook. She was excited that I was heading off to Mumbai, India for ASBunplugged and she was hoping I could chat with her class since they were about to start learning about Asia.  Rather than chat, I described the 20 question skype session to her to see if her 1st graders would be interested in this type of activity. And sure enough, I will be doing another mystery skype.

Thank you Cathy for sending out the request and modeling great instruction. 



Cathy Koos said...

My pleasure! I love how willing you and others in my Personal Learning Network are to share their experience. It was fun and since that day many of my teachers have tried Skype. Some have done it several times. Thanks for helping me "demystify" Skype with our Mystery Skype call.

Hiram Cuevas said...

Cathy, thanks for you comment. I am so glad that your teachers were able to run with it and even more grateful for the opportunity to be reminded that the little things make a difference. Your faculty is very fortunate to have you.