OSAPAC/CCPALO is the Ontario Software Acquisition Program Advisory Committee that has been working hard over the last year and a half, in collaboration with the Ontario Ministry of Education, to bring some new educational resources to Ontario students and teachers. As a member of the committee, I’m excited to be a part of sharing these out (most recently at #bit14 and #OntEdleaders events) and hope you’ll provide some feedback to us as you get using them!
A NEW and improved website!
Check out the new look of the OSAPAC Website. It’s clean, streamlined, and includes all of the features from before such as: a list of the licensed digital products, a survey for teachers to indicate their wish list of software or applications that respond to student learning needs, information about the committee, and a FAQ section to address common questions. New this year is the Project Section where the following projects are stored:
Classroom teachers gathered together in the summer of 2014 to create a package of resources (cross-curricular and Primary – Secondary) to help teachers integrate and implement digital citizenship into their programs. This resource arose from multiple requests from Ontario teachers for assistance in Digital Citizenship; these requests were left on the OSAPAC Survey. They developed four categories of digital citizenship that involve action oriented do’s, rather than don’ts, that support considering digital citizenship as part of the on-going culture of the classroom rather than an isolated unit or discussion. Existing resources have been collated and applied in example lessons in a wide variety of subject and grade levels. These lessons were designed with multiple entry points in mind; teachers can navigate through a list of resources, or use an example of a classroom connection that outlines an authentic task and includes curriculum, technology and digital citizenship links.
In order to help instructional leaders, administrators, teachers, and other educators understand how Ministry licensed digital resources can be used to help facilitate and support evolving classroom practices, OSAPAC has developed some scaffolded supports around licensed products. The SAMR model provides a useful framework to help identify opportunities for learning afforded by technology, and can be a great starting point for those beginning to consider the pedagogical power of tech tools, and can also be useful for those more comfortable with the tools but who search for transformative ways to effectively integrate technology for student learning.
Teachers from around the province have shared lessons integrating OSAPAC software, and other free tools, with the Ontario Curriculum in mind. These lessons involve taking the reader on a walk through the SAMR framework, starting with how the software could Substitute a traditional activity, and then moving up through Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition. You’ll also find some reflection videos from the teachers who created the lessons.
OSSEMOOC is a third project from OSAPAC where Mark Carbone (@markwcarbone) and Donna Fry (@fryed) are nurturing a dynamic, open online community of formal and informal school leaders from across the province. In learning with and from others, educators are finding out how to become connected leaders and learning from others who are leveraging social media tools in practical ways to make learning environments even better.
It’s been exciting to work with teachers and OSAPAC committee members to create these projects — please share your feedback with us if you have any. Also, don’t forget to access the OSAPAC Survey and share your needs for digital resources!