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Campfire: Igniting Education with Blended Learning

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Join the MyBlend team as they talk to Michigan educators about how they are using blended learning in their classrooms. Online tools, classroom design and advice for other teachers are shared and discussed.

Join the MyBlend team as they talk to Michigan educators about how they are using blended learning in their classrooms. Online tools, classroom design and advice for other teachers are shared and discussed.
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Join the MyBlend team as they talk to Michigan educators about how they are using blended learning in their classrooms. Online tools, classroom design and advice for other teachers are shared and discussed.




Chubby Bunny Teacher Challenge

It might be a little chilly to gather around a campfire this time of year, but we’d love for you to grab your coffee and get cozy while you listen to our FIRST Campfire Podcast. We want to bring you a different style of education podcast that serves educators, administrators, tech coaches and ANYONE who has an interest in education! Something Elated by Broke For Free is licensed under a Attribution 3.0 United States License. Tawny Owls 2.wav by Benboncan is licensed under a Attribution 3.0...


Justin Bruno

Justin Bruno is a Research Associate for the Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute, a division of Michigan Virtual University. Justin is a colleague and, for the past year, a fellow podcast host. The Virtual Viewpoints podcast features interviews with K-12 online and blended professionals. Conversation centers around how the power of applicable research enhances the quality of teaching and learning. Justin talks with practitioners, policy makers, administrators and researchers from...


Ashlie O'Connor

Ashlie O’Connor is an Instructional Technology and Data Coach for the Alpena-Montmorency-Alcona Educational Service District and Alcona Community Schools itself. I met Ashlie this past summer at the Boyne Tech Conference. We both presented sessions in the same room. I really enjoyed her fast-pace presentation style and the practicality she brought to demonstrating EdTech tools. Since that time we’ve had a handful of deep educational conversations. My mind gets a good stretch with each one....


Erin Luckhardt

Erin Luckhardt is an 8th-grade social studies teacher at Boyne City Middle School. She’s one of the organizers of the Boyne Tech Conference which has been held the last two years in late June after school ends. If you haven’t been up before, there are a lot of great sessions led by teachers sharing their best practices. In our conversation, we talked about the components that help support effective technology PD, how to sustain learning beyond the initial PD session and applying...


Andrea Zellner

Andrea Zellner is a Technology Integration Specialist at Oakland Schools, working exclusively with the Pontiac School District. She is also a Ph.D student in the Educational Psychology and Educational Technology program at Michigan State University, a Red Cedar Writing Project disciple, a former high school English and biology teacher and a self-proclaimed “shenanigans instigator.” Andrea told me about the Tech Cafe, a drop in professional development center they’ve recently established in...


Rachelle Wynkoop

Rachelle Wynkoop is the Supervisor of Secondary Curriculum and Professional Development at the Port Huron Area School District. She is an active member of the #michED community and a regular presenter at education conferences throughout the state. Rachelle’s also a remarkable champion for the benefits of blended learning as a companion to great teaching.


Cresta Wright

Cresta Wright is the Instructional Technology Coordinator at Pennfield Public Schools in Battle Creek. Her career in education started in Pennfield as a classroom teacher where she was dabbling in blending learning before the phrase had much buzz. Between her Pennfield tenures she was a Technology Integration Specialist at Union City Community Schools. Cresta and I talked about shifting from a consulting to coaching mentality while working with teachers, how growing up in an agricultural...


Sarah Wood

Sarah Wood is is an Educational Technologist at Godfrey-Lee Public Schools in Wyoming, Mich. She works with K-12 teachers to utilize the technology resources that the district has available. There is no such thing as a “normal” week in her role, something she enjoys. Over eight years she says her responsibilities have morphed as technology has evolved. I was excited to talk to Sarah about Godfrey-Lee’s Rebel U event, their own educational technology conference that takes place during...


Kerry Guiliano

Kerry Guiliano is a Technology Integration Specialist at Oakland Schools. As part of the intermediate school district’s shared services model she works exclusively with Southfield Public Schools, helping educators to use technologies thoughtfully for teaching and learning. Before Kerry’s current role, she was a Spanish and technology teacher. As an elective teacher she worked with an incredible range of students from a young fives program all the way up to 12th-graders. Kerry shared her...


Kit Hard

Kit Hard is an Education Technology Specialist at Marysville Public Schools. Part of his professional responsibilities are to provide training and support to teachers, which he focuses predominantly around blended learning instruction and formative assessment. He’s also a Universal Design for Learning evangelist, a Maker movement supporter and a #michED leader. I love having a conversation with Kit because he’s always got exciting news about projects that he’s working on with teachers in...


Elaine Mantinan

Elaine Mantinan is a Spanish teacher at L'Anse Creuse High School - North in Macomb, Mich. When her principal approached her to be among the first educators in L’Anse Creuse Public Schools to pioneer their blended learning initiative, she was excited to take part. Over the past two school years she’s been designing, building and teaching a blended Spanish course. We chatted about the infrastructure and course design considerations necessary for this new course type. We talked about the...


Chris Stanley

Chris Stanley is a 21st Century Teacher with Fraser Public Schools. This is an interesting position that the district has created: part instructional coach, part classroom teacher. Primarily he supports secondary level staff and students in integrating technology to enhance learning. In fact he is currently working exclusively in this capacity. Yet as recently as last semester he was also teaching two ELA classes at the high school, a content area that he’s taught since 2008. We chatted...


Ann Smart

Ann Smart is an instructional coach with Adrian Public Schools, the same district she attended as a student. After completing her bachelor's degree at Adrian College in 2002, she developed her craft as a high school reading teacher and literacy coach in Colorado for a year and the state of Washington for six. In 2010, she returned to Adrian to teach reading at the middle school, before transitioning into her current role as instructional coach. She is in the midst of her third year in this...


Tara Becker-Utess

We had the pleasure of talking to Tara Becker-Utess about how she began to explore blended learning as a result of connecting with the Michigan flipped classroom teaching community, and how her class has continuously evolved and improved as a direct result of the feedback she has received from her students along the way. With more time to engage with her students in the classroom, as well connecting with various personal learning networks, she rediscovered her love for teaching. Follow...


Angela Mellott

Since 2007 Angela Mellott has been a teacher at Brandywine Community Schools. Brandywine Junior/Senior High School serves grades 7-12 and staff is shared between the middle and high school grade levels. Identifying opportunities to differentiate learning for her students, Angela began to explore blended learning in April 2014. She chose to work with MyBlend to support her growth in applying blended learning strategies to her course design. In our conversation she references two MyBlend...


Andrew Shauver

Andrew Shauver began his teaching career in 2006. After going through the struggles of a first-year math teacher, he sought to create opportunities for his students that focused more on value and less on one-size, fit-all tasks. Before blended learning was a buzzword, he was developing online environments that gave students greater control over place, pace, path and time. In his career as a teacher with Webberville Community Schools and Pennfield Schools he continued to seek out designs...


Melody Arabo

Since 2002, Melody Arabo has been a third-grade teacher at Keith Elementary in the Walled Lake Consolidated School District. In May, she was named the Michigan Teacher of the Year for the 2014-2015 school year. Literally overnight, she became the lead voice of educators throughout the state. We talked about blended learning strategies, building a culture of collaboration in education and got a sneak preview of her new book, “Diary of a Real Bully.” Follow Melody on Twitter:...