My Own PD: WW ADE 2016 Blog

The last week of July 2016 became the best professional learning yet that I had experienced as an educator. The Worldwide Apple Distinguished Educators Institute 2016 was held in the lovely and magnificent city of Berlin in Germany. It was my first time to attend a worldwide event for ADEs since becoming a member of the global community last year and attending the APAC Institute in Singapore.

 

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Almost 400 educators from 38 different countries around the world gathered to share, learn, and collaborate on projects that aim to create a “dent in the universe” and to continue making a difference in the field learning and teaching. The enthusiasm and energy during the institute were off the charts. It was also a great opportunity to network and finally get to meet in person the other amazing ADEs that I usually would interact with or follow on Twitter.

The Institute was of course a hit because of the exclusive updates on Apple apps, such as on iTunes U and Classroom app, that the Apple Education team shared. We were given a chance to have master classes and sit in expert labs that were facilitated by the product managers or developers of Apple apps, such as Keynote, iBooks Author, iTunes U among others. We also had hands on or playground sessions dedicated for coding and STEAM. ADEs got the chance to use various coding gadgets and apps such as Bloxels, Sphere and the upcoming Swift Playground among others.

My favourite and probably the best part of the Institute was the ADE Showcases. During the showcases, our fellow ADEs shared to the community the marvellous and amazing work that they have done in their own school, district, or the international scene. There was a great mix and diversity among the presenters, which was perfect because I got the chance to see how Apple technology is employed in various contexts around the world. The best presentations for me were those that showed how Apple technology can enable and support learning among the physically-challenged learners. This was of course due to the fact the Apple has really worked on the accessibility features of its devices, especially the iPad. Kudos to Team Japan for touching my heart because of their great presentations. Shout out to fellow Filipino ADE, Peter Esperanza who shared his amazing work on flipping AP Calculus and other Math subjects.

As part of our commitment to continue making a difference in learning and teaching, we formed and collaborated in groups as we started working on projects that aim to support and help other educators around the globe, who wishes to transform the learning experiences that they design for their students. So, watch out for these amazing works from ADEs in the coming months.

Of course our stay in Berlin would not be complete if we did not have the chance to go for offsite visits and tours. The gorgeous Apple Store in Berlin was our first stop. We met with Eye Em app’s developers who shared their company’s journey towards being one of the best photography apps in the AppStore. We also had the chance to go around and play with Apple devices in the store. After that, we were free to roam around and visit the various historical and tourists spots in Berlin.

 

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Finally, the young CEO of Math 42 app also shared to us his company’s journey from being curious students to expert and successful developers of one of the best educational app.

This was just a sharing of what happened in the Institute. Wait for my blog on the leanings that I had from #ADE2016.

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A Reflection on my Apple Distinguished Educator 2015 Application

I am so happy to finally share my reflection on ADE2015. My summer break was a very busy one – enjoying life with my family and diving into professional development/ ed tech seminar workshops for teachers.

Last month, amidst the scorching heat of summer sun in Manila, I received the greatest and most exciting email yet this year. The sweet “yes!” of Apple to my ADE 2015 application. I had to read the message so many times before I finally shared the incredible news to my family and closest friends and colleagues.

It was my first time to apply as an ADE. I first heard about the ADE from my ADE colleagues  in Xavier School. My co-teachers, Galvin and Jessica (ADE 2013) are the lead persons in our school’s 1:1 program. From that point on, I wondered on what I would gain if I join the ADE community. That moment also marked a personal challenge to use more of Apple tech in my class and to let my students learn effectively and create wonderful products that showcase the knowledge and skills that they would learn in my class.

What I love about the application is the process itself. The application process gave me the opportunity to look back and reflect on what I have been doing in line with integrating ed tech in class. I have been a teacher for almost 7 years now and an ed tech integrator for almost 5 years already. As I went back to the pictures and videos of my students learning with tech tools, I clearly saw how I personally improved as a teacher, in areas such as classroom management, lesson planning, motivating students, and integrating ed tech among others.

Integrating tech tools in my Religious Education (Christian Life Education) class has been a great challenge. I love gadgets and tech tools but using them in class, in a subject that is not mainstream, is quite difficult. The ADE application process gave me the opportunity to understand once more that as a Rel Ed teacher, the tech tools are not ends, but means to a greater mission – that is, to teach the students what it means to become competent but person-for-others members of the community and in my case, the Church.

For these moments of reflection, I am grateful.

Another aspect of the ADE application process that drove me crazy was the time to wait for Apple’s decision. Accepted or rejected. What I amazed me during these waiting period was on how ADE applicants shared their views, practices, and works in using Apple tech in Twitter. Just reading the tweets of ADE applicants gave my wonderful insights on integrating ed tech in class. I was able to learn from the best practices of other teachers and ed tech integrators. In short, there was already learning and networking at that time.

In the end, I am really grateful and honored to be part of this incredible group of educators. Fellow ADEs, see you in Singapore for the ADE 2015 Asia-Pacific Institute on August!

What Is ADE?

“The Apple Distinguished Educator (ADE) Program began in 1994, when Apple recognized K-12 and higher education pioneers who are using a variety of Apple products to transform teaching and learning in powerful ways. Today it has grown into a worldwide community of over 2,000 visionary educators and innovative leaders who are doing amazing things with Apple technology in and out of the classroom. Apple is pleased to welcome (ADE Name) to the ADE Class of 2015.  Learn more about this group of innovative educators online at http://www.apple.com/education/apple-distinguished-educator .”