PROVIDING SUPPORT AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR TEACHERS
The Maryland Society for Educational Technology has announced its 2023-2024 monthly themes. The themes were chosen with input from its more than 2,000 members.
"Each year we try to offer professional learning that meets the needs of our members across the state and those who support us beyond our Maryland border," MSET President Brandie Shatto explained. "We got a lot of great feedback this summer after our Book Study conversations with educators from multiple levels. We took that feedback and attempted to make themes that would be relevant to our members."
The themes include the following:
Check out MSET's monthly events page as it offers different webinars each month to support its themes.
The Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is pleased to announce Michelle Baker, a technology teacher at Longfellow Elementary School in the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS), as the recipient of the prestigious Outstanding Educator Using Technology Award. This esteemed recognition celebrates Michelle's exceptional contributions to technology integration in education and her unwavering dedication to empowering students through innovative teaching practices.
The MSET Outstanding Educator Using Technology Award, sponsored by Bluum, acknowledges educators who demonstrate exemplary use of technology to enhance teaching and learning. Baker's remarkable achievements and her commitment to leveraging technology in the classroom made her the clear choice for this prestigious honor.
"We are thrilled to recognize Michelle as an exceptional educator who exemplifies innovation in educational technology," expressed Chris Cuppett, MSET's Awards co-chair. "Michelle's dedication to empowering her graduate students to leverage technology in their teaching practices is truly commendable. Her influence on her students has a far-reaching impact that extends beyond the classroom."
With over 27 years of experience in education, Baker holds a Master's degree in Library Media/Instructional Technology with an Administration and Supervision Certificate. Her extensive background and expertise have enabled her to create a lasting impact on technology use in her educational community.
As a technology teacher at Longfellow Elementary School, Michelle provides students from PreK to 5th grade with 30 to 60 minutes of direct instruction. Through her engaging lessons, she covers a wide range of topics, including digital citizenship, computational thinking, coding, collaboration, communication, and foundational technology skills. Michelle incorporates various digital tools and platforms, offering students multiple avenues to demonstrate their learning and skills.
One of Michelle's notable achievements is her commitment to fostering equity and empowerment among her students. She has developed a rapport with her students and has organized enrichment and leadership experiences beyond regular classes. Projects such as 3D printing initiatives and peer helper partnerships have allowed older students to assist younger grades during technology classes. Michelle's dedication and passion for equity guide her every action, ensuring that students at Longfellow Elementary leave with coding experience, proficiency in applications, and high-level computational thinking skills.
Michelle's influence extends beyond her classroom as she actively collaborates with her colleagues to support their integration of technology into their teaching practices. She provides guidance, professional development sessions, and assists in planning how technology can enhance their instruction. Michelle's commitment to innovation is evident in her collaborative projects with Longfellow's library media specialist, where students create videos of book reviews to challenge censorship and share their thoughts on banned books.
In her quest for continuous improvement, Michelle actively seeks out new ideas, projects, and technologies to incorporate into her teaching. She attends conferences, engages in discussions with colleagues, and explores emerging technologies to discover their potential for enhancing learning experiences. By actively experimenting with new tools and applications, Michelle finds innovative ways to integrate technology effectively.
Michelle's passion for sharing knowledge and inspiring others extends beyond her classroom. She incorporates a wide variety of digital tools in her lessons, sharing student work with other teachers, families, and through social media platforms. Through presentations at local, state, and national conferences, Michelle disseminates her expertise, providing detailed and purposeful insights that empower fellow educators to implement digital tools effectively.
Furthermore, Michelle Baker plays an indispensable role in Longfellow Elementary's leadership team, where her impact reaches the entire school community. Acting as a member of the Restorative Justice Team, the lead point of contact for the Student Council, and the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Liaison, she infuses technology into various initiatives and decision-making processes that positively impact the school community.
"Michelle Baker is a leader who embodies the qualities of an outstanding educator using technology," Longfellow Elementary's Principal Derek Anderson stated. "She consistently promotes kindness, unity, and social justice, while encouraging students to use their voices respectfully and thoughtfully."
About Outstanding Educator Award
In partnership with Bluum, The Outstanding Educator Award is given annually to an outstanding educator supports MSET’s mission of advancing excellence in teaching and leading with technology. Any educator in a Maryland public or private school whose primary job responsibility is the direct instruction of students in an Early Childhood through Grade 12 or Higher Education classroom may be nominated. The educator must be currently responsible for the day-to-day instruction of PK-18 students. A nominee for this award may include a library media specialist and/or technology integration specialist, if at least seventy-five percent of his or her responsibilities include the direct instruction of PK-18 age students.
The Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is proud to announce that Dr. Sarah Jane Thomas, an esteemed educator from Prince George's County Public Schools, has been selected as the recipient of the prestigious Outstanding Leader Award for 2023. Dr. Thomas' remarkable contributions to educational technology and her unwavering commitment to enhancing learning experiences have earned her this esteemed recognition.
The MSET Outstanding Leader Award is bestowed upon an individual who demonstrates exemplary leadership in the field of educational technology and has made significant advancements in the integration of technology within the classroom. Dr. Thomas has exemplified these qualities throughout her career, establishing herself as a visionary leader, an advocate for educational technology, and a catalyst for change.
With over two decades of experience in education, Dr. Thomas has consistently pushed the boundaries of innovation to transform teaching and learning practices. As the Regional Coordinator of Educational Technology for Prince George's County Public Schools, she has spearheaded numerous initiatives to ensure students have access to cutting-edge technologies and digital resources. Under her guidance, the district has successfully implemented a wide range of tech-based programs that have positively impacted student engagement, creativity, and critical thinking skills.
Dr. Thomas' leadership has been instrumental in fostering collaboration among educators, administrators, and technology experts, creating a culture of innovation and digital fluency. She has provided extensive professional development opportunities, empowering teachers to integrate technology effectively into their lesson plans and adapt to the rapidly evolving digital landscape. Her dedication to equipping both students and teachers with the tools they need to succeed in the 21st century has significantly enriched the educational experience within Prince George's County Public Schools.
Furthermore, Dr. Thomas has actively participated in state and national educational technology conferences, sharing her expertise and insights with a wider audience. Her passion for educational technology is contagious, inspiring others to embrace innovation and explore new possibilities in the realm of teaching and learning.
"Sarah is an exceptional leader in the field of educational technology, and we are thrilled to recognize her remarkable achievements with the MSET Outstanding Leader Award for 2023," said Brandie Shatto, President-Elect of the Maryland Society for Educational Technology. "Her unwavering commitment to leveraging technology to enhance student outcomes and her dedication to empowering educators have made a lasting impact on the entire educational community."
Dr. Thomas' remarkable accomplishments was formally acknowledged during a surprise visit to the Bonnie F. John's Educational Media Center on May 24th. The event brought together educational leaders across PGCPS as well as some past educational technology personnel to celebrate.
About MSET: The Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the effective use of technology in education across Maryland. MSET offers professional development opportunities, resources, and networking opportunities to educators, administrators, and technology professionals, fostering collaboration and innovation in the field of educational technology.
The Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) and Bluum were proud to surprise Notre Dame of Maryland Professor Ryan Schaaf today as its 2022-2023 Outstanding HigherEd Award Winner. For over 25 years, Schaaf has been a beacon of inspiration to both his colleagues and students at prestigious institutions such as Notre Dame of Maryland University and Johns Hopkins University. His leadership and unwavering commitment to promoting the effective use of technology in education have set them apart as a true higher education leader.
“Always eager to expand his knowledge and stay abreast of the latest trends, Ryan consistently seeks out new information and professional learning opportunities,” MSET President Brian Cook shared. “Ryan’s thirst for growth and continuous improvement is evident in his willingness to present at numerous regional and national conferences.”
However, Schaff’s contributions extend far beyond the conference circuit. Through his extensive authorship of seven books, this individual has shared their wealth of knowledge and resources with educators inside and outside of Maryland. His texts, covering topics such as digital-age learning, game-based learning, and education reform.
“As the chair of the Information and Education Technology Committee at Notre Dame of Maryland University, [Schaff] this visionary leader has played a pivotal role in promoting effective policy development and prioritizing budgetary requests for innovative technologies. [Schaaf’s] guidance has brought about the successful implementation of Brightspace, a new learning management system, and has empowered faculty and students to embrace digital tools and enhance their learning experiences,” Lisa Pallett, assistant dean and association professor at Notre Dame of Maryland University, read as she presented Shaaf’s award today.
During the challenging times brought about by the pandemic, Schaaf’s leadership and expertise shone brightly. He selflessly dedicated himself to assisting colleagues in the transition from face-to-face to online learning. Through countless instructional sessions, he mentored and trained his peers, ensuring they were equipped with the necessary digital tools and skills for effective instruction in a virtual environment.
“MSET is very blessed to expand its Awards Program this year to include a HigherEd Award. The amount of high octane candidates was really special, but even more special is how humble they are about their work. They often don’t even realize the impact and the longevity of that impact in their university community and that is no different with Ryan Schaaf,” MSET Awards Co-Chair Chris Cuppett shared. “We are truly blessed to get the opportunity to learn about the work of so many high-level professors throughout the awards program.”
Schaaf will be honored throughout the upcoming year by receiving opportunities to participate in MSET business meetings, serve as featured speakers, and have his work highlighted. Plus, Schaaf received a banner to display at Notre Dame of Maryland University, a complimentary registration for the upcoming Common Ground Conference, and a one-year paid MSET Membership.
“MSET wants to give a special thank you our team who scored each of the entries,” Tracy Schoene, MSET’s Awards co-chair, shared about the team who works tirelessly behind the scenes to make these awards happen. “We are very fortunate to have dedicated members who are willing to volunteer their time in the Organization.”
About Outstanding Leader Award
In partnership with Bluum, the HigherEd Award is given to an outstanding full-time or part-time faculty member, dean, department chair, or president in the state of Maryland who supports MSET’s mission of advancing excellence in teaching and leading with technology. This person's position can (but not required) be a combination of teaching and administrative duties.
Bluum and the Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is proud to announce the finalists for its annual Outstanding Higher Education Award. This award recognizes a Higher Education professional who has made exemplary contributions to the implementation of technology in Maryland institutions of higher education. It supports MSET’s Mission to advance excellence in learning and teaching through innovative and effective uses of technology.
“MSET has spent a lot of time reengaging the organization with its higher education members and this past year it was determined to add the Outstanding Higher Education Award,” MSET President Brian Cook explained about the new award. “We are excited to have three outstanding educators honored this year from the Higher Ed ranks who exemplify the mission of MSET. Each of these candidates offer a special talent and are leaders in their universities.”
Here are the three finalists:
ALISSA HARRINGTON, Senior Instructional Design Specialist at McDaniel College — Alissa's innovative approach has been instrumental in the adoption of new technologies at McDaniel, contributing to the vitality of faculty and promoting student success. Since her arrival at McDaniel, Alissa has demonstrated a commitment to supporting faculty and students with effective technology use by publishing a weekly video blog called Tech Tip Tuesday (see artifact 2) each semester. Through this platform, she provides the McDaniel community with up-to-date information on emerging technologies, best practices, and just-in-time technology support. Remarkably, she has not missed a week of publishing a video since her first recording in September 2019. To curate content for Tech Tip Tuesday, Alissa continuously reviews help desk tickets, researches vendor updates, and stays connected on emerging technology practices through her participation in professional networks such as Educause, and the Maryland Education Enterprise Consortium (MEEC).
Alissa's dedication to technology integration at McDaniel is further demonstrated through her monthly training sessions for faculty. She employs various formats designed to attract faculty participation, including lunch-and-learn sessions called Mind Grub and her popular Friday Appy Hour sessions. She also developed a Summer Technology Challenge to increase faculty engagement and training attendance during the summer months. To her surprise, she had nearly 30 faculty entries and doubled her summer workshop participation. Her workshop sessions cover a wide range of topics that promote emerging technologies and their potential to enhance teaching and learning. Some of the titles of her recent sessions include "Designing with AI Tools," "Reviving QR Codes: Innovative Applications for Classroom Engagement," and "Custom Learning Paths with Adaptive Release." By creating engaging and lively sessions, Alissa helps to foster a positive and energized learning environment for faculty, encouraging them to actively participate and explore new technologies.
CHELSEA MCCLURE, Lecturer in Secondary and Middle School Education at Towson University — McClure is in the College of Education and incorporates technology in educational settings through her classes, where she consistently has her students use technology for formal assessments throughout class, engagement activities as well as for projects. She also integrates technology and promotes the use of technology in internship placements in her part-time internship and full-time internship classes. The technology is promoted for teacher internships to use in their middle and high school classroom for engagement, collaboration, 21st century skills, and incorporating different learning styles. Overall, she plans, promotes, and engages students and teacher candidates in the use of technology for the purpose of improving the educational setting.
McClure also impacts the educational community through her grant-funded project promoting the use of technology in teacher education. The first example is through her grant -unded project using virtual simulations to engage teacher candidates in guardian-teacher conferences to build confidence and skills in areas that many students report being an area of need for additional training. She has run this training as a two-day professional learning experience, as well as it being integrated into her course and has received positive feedback from students on how the technology made a significant and positive impact.
RYAN SCHAAF, Associate Professor of Educational Technology at Notre Dame Maryland University —schaaf has personified the definition of higher education leadership by promoting the effective use of technology with his fellow faculty members, as well as students pursuing a wide variety of degrees in teacher preparatory programs. He consistently seeks out new information and professional learning opportunities. He keeps up with the latest trends through education publications and reflects on how he can support innovative learning at NDMU. Throughout his tenure as a professor for the School of Education (SOE), Ryan has shared his extensive wealth of knowledge and resources inside and outside of Maryland. Over the past ten years, Ryan has both attended and presented at a variety of national and regional conferences, including, but not limited to, FETC, ISTE, Serious Play, The Game-Based Learning Virtual Conference, and, of course, Common Ground. Ryan has provided spotlight keynotes at five previous Common Ground conferences in person and virtually during the pandemic.
Over the past decade, Ryan continuously improves his professional practice through the exploration of creative applications for technology and the consistent evaluation and reflection of current research and methods to maximize student learning by authoring seven books associated with digital-age learning, digital game-based learning, future-focused learning, and promoting learning agency in today’s schools. Making School a Game Worth Playing, Using Digital Games as Assessment and Instruction Tools, and Game On are texts that examine the use of gaming in learning contexts. A Brief History of the Future of Education, Learner Choice, Learner Voice, and Literacy is Still Not Enough are books that explore education reform and modern learning initiatives. Finally, Reinventing Learning for the Always-On Generation, a text that provides a comprehensive profile and framework for teaching members of the digital generations, was awarded the 2016 IPPY Silver Medal for an exemplary educational resource by Independent Publisher. Amazon has often recognized Ryan Schaaf’s texts as hot releases in categories such as education reform, pedagogy, and computers and technology.
Bluum and the Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is proud to announce the finalists for its annual Outstanding Educator Award. This award recognizes one educator for his or her use of educational technology in the teaching and learning process in Maryland schools. The award supports MSET’s Mission for advancing excellence in learning and teaching through innovative and effective uses of technology.
“MSET is proud to have seven amazing educators who exemplify teaching and learning with technology as our finalists this year,” MSET Awards Chair Chris Cuppett indicated. “Each of these educators have amazing stories about how they are supporting students and challenging the status quo. Maryland is fortunate to have these educators working with students.”
Here are the seven finalist:
MICHELLE BAKER, technology teacher at Longfellow Elementary School, Howard County Public Schools — Michelle’s work has had a significant positive impact on technology use in her educational community. As a technology teacher, Michelle provides 30 to 60 minutes of direct instruction to students in PreK-5. The students engage in active learning on topics such as digital citizenship, computational thinking, coding, collaboration, communication, and foundational technology skills. She provides opportunities for students to use various digital tools to engage in learning and options to demonstrate their learning in multiple ways. Thanks to Michelle, students leave Longfellow Elementary with a solid coding experience, proficiency with various applications, and high-level computational thinking skills.
CHRISTYN DAY, Science Teacher and Advanced Academics Specialist at West Frederick Middle School, Frederick County Public Schools — Christyn is continuously looking for opportunities to improve her professional practice. She is in her second year of the Frederick County Public School Vanguard Leadership program, a program that fosters a culture of personalized learning in teachers’ classrooms and their schools. Plus, Christyn is consistently involved in professional learning experiences that evaluate and reflect on current research and practices to improve student learning in her classroom and school. She is currently in the McDaniel Gifted and Talented Educator Specialist (GATES) Certification program, a program designed for K-12 educators who seek to gain expertise in the field of gifted and talented education.
ERIC HINES, Math Teacher at Laurel High School, Prince George’s County Public Schools — Eric integrates technology in his high school math classrooms encouraging students to create, pushing his students beyond just consumers of technology. Eric believes the integration of technology in academic experiences is imperative as we embark on the “Era of Screens” and the many distractions and interests that impact our students. In every class period, Eric implements different variations of technology to help with multiple learning styles, including image slideshows, interactive slides, multimedia videos, audio experiences, animations, digital whiteboards for hands-on experiences, games, and digital manipulatives.
BEN HURLEY, technology teacher/coach at Washington County Public Schools — Ben is a highly effective educator working in classrooms daily with PreK-12 teachers and students across Washington County Public Schools. He leads and teaches PreK-5 Computer Science Curriculum that is infused within the district’s library media curriculum. He can be seen traveling from school to school teaching the curriculum and being a lead teacher across the district as he is a Regional Facilitator for the Elementary Computer Science Coach program too.
KORAL MCKENNA, science teacher at Anne Arundel County Public Schools — Koral’s magic is her intentionality. It is never just technology for the sake of using it. There is always a specific purpose. Teaching a hybrid class means developing relationships from behind a camera as well as in person, which. McKenna has excelled at doing, and in getting to know each learner, she is able to customize their learning paths. She expertly analyzes content standards and meets those markers with a curriculum that balances hands-on learning experiences, along with virtual labs and projects. Ms. McKenna chooses each activity, both digital and in-person, with specific learning goals and technology education in mind.
ANN PRIZZI, performing arts teacher at Baltimore County Public Schools — Ann believes teachers are people with creative potentials for guiding the development of others. She sees teaching as an art. She is consistently asking herself, How can I become better equipped to deal successfully with the challenge of helping others learn in an ever changing world of technology? Prizzi uses technology to create positive and productive relationships with students and understand the knowledge and insight into human behavior of how one can contribute to making a climate most favorable to the learner. She says staying visible is not only being seen, but being heard from. Prizzi has very high expectations for herself as an educational technology leader and wants to lead by example for her students.
SACHA TAYLOR-BLADES, computer science teacher at Crossland High School, Prince George’s County Public Schools — Sacha is a true leader in integrating technology into her teaching practice. She is constantly seeking out new tools and techniques to enhance student learning and engagement. Whether it's implementing a new coding program, using virtual reality to bring history to life, or creating interactive multimedia projects, Taylor-Blades’ is always exploring new ways to engage students and promote their learning. She has presented at the Prince Georges County Public Schools Powering Up Technology Conference; she is a presenter at the Annual SMARTLab Conference and an Apple Learning Coach Candidate.
Baltimore, MD - The Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is proud to announce a new partnership with ClassLink, a leading provider of cloud-based education solutions.
MSET is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the effective use of technology in education. MSET provides professional development, networking opportunities, and resources to educators across Maryland to help them effectively integrate technology into their curriculum. ClassLink is a cloud-based education solution that simplifies the use of digital resources for students and teachers.
"We are thrilled to partner with ClassLink to bring cutting-edge technology solutions to our member schools and districts," said Brian Cook, President of MSET. "ClassLink's platform provides a seamless experience for both educators and students, enabling them to access digital resources with ease.”
For more information on MSET and this partnership, please visit msetonline.org.
About Maryland Society for Educational Technology:
The Maryland Society for Educational Technology (MSET) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the effective use of technology in education. The society provides professional development, networking opportunities, and resources to educators across Maryland to help them effectively integrate technology into their curriculum.
ClassLink is a global education provider of access and analytics products that create more time for learning and help schools better understand digital engagement. As leading advocates for open data standards, we offer instant access to apps and files with single sign-on, streamline class rostering, automate account provisioning, and provide actionable analytics. ClassLink empowers 18 million students and staff in over 2,400 school systems. Visit classlink.com to learn more.
The Maryland Society for Educational Technology is excited to partner with Loyola University Maryland to host an all all-day Sphero Workshop for K-12 Teachers, Administrators, and Higher Education faculty on Saturday, March 25, 2023 from 8:30am-2:15pm.
"Sphero offers a ton of easy to use tools to introduce coding in the classroom and is consistently improving its products to move into higher grade levels," MSET President Brian Cook stated. "This event will allow educators to engage in three hands-on sessions around Sphero. The skills they pick up that day will instantly allow them to go back into their own classrooms and implement, which is very important part of professional learning to me."
The event is being hosted at the Loyola's Timonium Graduate Center (2034 Greenspring Drive, Timonium, MD, 21093) and will feature keynote speaker Dr. Sarah Thomas, a regional technology coordinator for Prince George's County Public Schools.
The cost is $25 for non-MSET members and includes breakfast and lunch.
Individuals may register using the registration link: https://sphero.ac-page.com/md_professional_development
December 18 – Maryland Society for Educational Technology is pleased to announce a new partnership with Teachers First to promote its book study on Teach Boldly: Using Edtech for Social Good by Jennifer Williams.
The book study will focus on technology implementation strategies, including:
“MSET is excited to share this opportunity for professional development and networking to our membership. It’s a fantastic opportunity to learn and grow together as professionals” said Brandie Shatto, President-Elect of MSET.
MSET members who wish to participate should apply on the teachers first website (https://teachersfirst.org/bookstudy/) by January 2, 2023. Each week, participants will be assigned a reading passage, knowledge construction/application activity, and a topic for discussion. At the conclusion of the study, those who actively participated, followed the rubric, and attended required sessions will receive a certificate of completion and reimbursement for the price of the eBook. Participants may also be eligible for Continuing Education Units (CEUs).
MSET is an organization for educators interested in technology and education that seeks to advance excellence in learning, teaching, and leading through innovative and effective uses of technology. Members have access to professional development resources, awards, special events, and other benefits.
TeachersFirst is an online community for teachers by teachers. With thousands of lessons, units, and reviewed web resources for K-12 classroom teachers, their website is designed to enrich teaching and learning for both teachers and their students.
The Maryland Society of Educational Technology has announced its call to nominate educators for its annual awards program. The three types of awards honor an Outstanding Educator, Outstanding Leader, and Outstanding Higher Education Professional using technology.
“Each year we continue to get many amazing educators across Maryland nominated for one of our awards. This year we decided to add the Outstanding Higher Education Professional award to really place a spotlight on the work our institutions of higher education (IHE) are doing,” MSET President Dr. Brian Cook explained as more and more higher education professionals are joining the organization. “It was the right timing and we’re excited to see the nominations come in.”
Phase one of the Award Program is the nomination window, which is open now through February 15, 2023. An individuals can nominate an educator in any of the three categories on the Awards Page of the MSET Site. Either the nominee or the nominator must be an MSET member.
In Phase two, a nomination packet will be sent to the nominee and the nominator. Nominators and nominees will work together to complete the nomination packet. The nominator will be responsible for writing the nomination statement based on the artifacts that the nominee provides. The nomination packet is due by April 15, 2023.
Winners are surprised at their place of employment in the Spring! Award recipients are given opportunities to participate in MSET business meetings, serve as featured speakers, and have their work highlighted. Each of our winners will receive a banner, a certificate, a complimentary registration for the Common Ground Conference, and a one year paid MSET Membership.
Last Year’s Award Winners
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