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OTAN Digest #86
October 2016


Adult Education Teacher Competencies Self-Assessment Available Through LINCS

The Adult Education Teacher Competencies Self Assessment External link opens in new window or tab is designed to identify the knowledge and skills needed by adult education teachers to improve student learning and performance. It is organized into four broad areas of skills and knowledge (domains) and then into specific demonstrable and observable areas of performance (competencies). The self-assessment helps identify professional development needs for new and experienced teachers. It is confidential and can be taken manually or online, and multiple times, as needed. Read more and access links...

California Department of Education Announces New Division Director for Career and College Transition Division

Donna Wyatt is the new Career and College Transition Division Director at the California Department of Education (CDE). State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson, made the announcement on September 14, 2016. More information on the new Director...

Virtual Conference October 2016

COABE External link opens in new window or tab will hold a Virtual Conference External link opens in new window or tab on Tuesday, October 25th and Wednesday, October 26th. This will include eight, hour-long sessions each day, plus presenter interviews, keynote speakers, and opportunities for networking. Registration is now open.

The Digital Citizenship Summit Is October 28, 2016

The DIGITAL CITIZENSHIP SUMMIT External link opens in new window or tab brings together people, organizations, and businesses throughout the world to promote the safe, savvy, and ethical use of social media & tech. They believe that by creating a multi-stakeholder participatory approach the community can find better solutions, push forward best practices, and help move the needle towards a better web.

The Digital Citizenship Summit is an all-day event (live streaming and free External link opens in new window or tab) of speakers and panels featuring a diverse range of educators, students, parenting experts, organizations, industry, thought leaders, and more! We need to bring together ALL stakeholders to promote the SAFE, SAVVY, and ETHICAL use of social media & tech. Read more...

Opportunity for Mexican Nationals to Earn a High School Certificate in the United States

The California Department of Education Adult Education Office in collaboration with the Consulate General of Mexico in Sacramento is presenting an opportunity to join the growing number of agencies offering an innovative program called Plazas Comunitarias External link opens in new window or tab. This educational program provides Mexican nationals who are living in the United States an opportunity to earn a Mexican High School Certificate. It began as a Memorandum of Understanding between Mexican and the United States governments dated November 10, 2004. Plazas Comunitarias serve as transitional programs that help individuals move into English and adult basic education classes. Complete article...

Building the Next Generation of Assessments in Education

In October 2015, in a Testing Action Plan, President Obama called for a new approach to testing and assessment to better serve students. The plan outlines a set of principles to reduce the time spent on standardized tests, and improve the quality and usefulness of tests for students and educators, including building new and more innovative technological-based assessment tools. More recently, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) released its proposed regulations on assessments under Title I of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which the President signed in December 2015, to clarify how states can utilize a number of innovative approaches to assessment, including better integration of technology. ED also published draft regulations for public comment on the Innovative Assessment Demonstration Authority under Title I part B of the ESSA, which will allow states to pilot new approaches in a subset of districts as an alternative to statewide tests as they work to scale innovative tests statewide. Complete article...

Digital Promise: How Educators Can Foster Student Motivation

Digital Promise spoke with Dr. Christina Hinton, faculty member at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and Founder and Executive Director of Research Schools International (RSI), and Dr. Tom Callahan, Director of the Merck-Horton Center for Teaching and Learning, and educator at St. George’s School in Middletown, Rhode Island, to learn about the core principles surrounding student motivation. Complete article...

The California Adult Education Professional Development Calendar Offers Many Opportunities for Professional Development

If you have never visited the California Adult Ed PD Calendar External link opens in new window or tab, we would like to encourage you to visit soon. All three leadership projects, OTAN, CALPRO, and CASAS, use this calendar to list their upcoming workshops. We are confident you will find a topic of interest.

Save Money - Offer Professional Development On-site

Now is the time to schedule professional development activities. We are looking for adult schools that are willing to take a leadership role in providing Professional Development involving the use of technology to teachers in their region. We will provide the training. You just provide the computer lab. There is no charge for this service. If you would like to participate, call us at 916-228-2580 or e-mail for more details!

October's New Web-based Class Activity!

Understanding the Electoral Process, Your Rights, and Government

2016 Election

Visit iCivics to see original artwork

Have you been looking for some creative ways to teach about the upcoming election and the voting process? If so, iCivics might just be what you need. This month's Web-based Class Activity introduces you to this wonderful Internet resource for teaching about all branches of government, the Constitution, citizenship and participation, politics and public policy, media and influence, civil rights, international affairs, landmark court decisions, and several other topics.

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Professional Development

Webinar clipart

Online Workshops & Webinars:

OTAN offers short, online workshops to meet the demands of busy adult educators. We are currently working on our line up for the Fall so stay tuned and check the California Adult Education Professional Development calendar so you won't miss any!

Online Curriculum Series, Part 1  moderated by Penny Pearson
November 15, 2016 ~ 12 to 1 p.m.

Online Curriculum Series, Part 2 moderated by Penny Pearson
February 7, 2017 ~ 12 to 1 p.m.

Face-to-Face Workshops:

Contact us at 916-228-2580 or e-mail to schedule one of our workshops at your school this summer or fall! We will do most of the work for you. We just need your available computer lab.

Face to face workshop

The deadline to register for many Face-to-Face workshops is two weeks before the workshop, so register early to avoid disappointment!

Mobile Devices: Formative Assessment
Friday, October 21, 2016 ~ 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Glendale Community College - Garfield Campus
1122 East Garfield
Glendale, CA 91205

Chromebooks for Adult Education
Thursday, October 27, 2016 ~ 12:15 to 3:15 p.m.
Folsom-Cordova Adult School
10850 Gadsten Way
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

Moodle: Create a Course Web Site
Friday, October 28, 2016 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Mt. Diablo Adult Education
1266 San Carlos Avenue
Concord, CA 94518

Moodle: Create a Course Web Site
Friday, October 28, 2016 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Mt. Diablo Adult Education
1266 San Carlos Avenue
Concord, CA 94518

Social Media for Adult Education
Friday, November 4, 2016 ~ 12 noon to 3 p.m.
Glendale Community College - Garfield Campus
1122 East Garfield
Glendale, CA 91205

OTAN offers a wide variety of no-cost, hands-on, three-hour workshops. We will come to your school if you have at least 10 interested participants and an approved lab. If you have a smaller school and need more participants, consider coordinating with other small schools in your area to fill your workshop. If there is a technology topic not listed that your staff needs assistance with, let us know and we will discuss creating a new workshop to meet that need. Here are some of our workshop titles:

Visit our Web site to see the complete list including descriptions and prerequisites for each.

Teaching Resources

Web "Sitings":

Blended Learning Toolkit External link opens in new window or tab
This Blended Learning Toolkit is a free, open resource for educational institutions interested in developing or expanding their blended learning initiatives. Among it's many resources are: best practices, strategies, models, and course design principles; two open educational resource prototype blended course templates in key core general education disciplines: Composition and Algebra; directions and suggestions for applying the toolkit resources to create original blended courses in disciplines other than Composition and Algebra; and a blog dedicated to blended learning research and practice called "The Morning Blend."

Twiducate External link opens in new window or tab
Have you ever wanted to use social media with your students, but were concerned about safety and privacy issues? Then Twiducate might be an alternative to use in your classes. The Twiducate Platform, brought to you by Live Lingua, is a free, social networking tool. Teachers and students can interact in a safe environment to learn how to use the Internet and interact with others in a virtual way. Twiducate is the perfect solution for ESL students. Rather than having your students sign up and enter an e-mail address, you sign up and create a class code. Using this code, your students log in to your class network. Here, they can answer questions, collaborate on problems, and even embed pictures and videos. As a teacher you have full control over the network. The options of how Twiducate can be used are limitless. Best of all, it is 100% free.

Digital Learn External link opens in new window or tab
If your students are new to computers, haven't used one in a while, are just a little unsure or uncomfortable, or just need a bit of a refresher, this site has the tools to help them tackle technology at their own pace and gain the confidence they need to succeed. It was developed by the Institute of Museum and Library Services External link opens in new window or tab.

EveryoneOn External link opens in new window or tab
Technology is transforming business, education, and communication, yet you may have learners in your class that have no Internet access at home due to issues with low income. If so, you can introduce them to the EveryoneOn site where they can find low-cost Internet access if they qualify. They will start by answering a few questions and plugging in their zip code to see what offers are available in their area. It's a great resource for you to know about. In addition, their Knowledge Center External link opens in new window or tab provides links to places students can learn more about using the Internet for many purposes.

5-Minute Mini Lessons and Time Fillers External link opens in new window or tab
These mini lessons (activities) are perfect for filling those little extra bits of time during the school day, helping you make the most of every moment. While these are aimed at K-12 students, some are appropriate for ABE and ASE classes, but some could be used in any class.

Interesting Idea

Podcasts and Personal PD
For the teaching professional, listening to podcasts is a great way to stay current with topics in education, hear stories and insights from fellow educators and feel connected to others who understand and share similar experiences in the classroom. And it does not require dedicated time to sit and focus; you can listen while on-the-go, such as when driving or walking the dog or performing routine tasks at home such as folding laundry or doing dishes. Many podcasts are under thirty minutes, which are timed well for a commute to and from school, but longer episodes can be easily paused and bookmarked like an audio book. Check here for Five Recommended Podcasts External link opens in new window or tab."

Source: Getting Smart External link opens in new window or tab, May 23, 2016, "5 Teacher-Recommended Podcasts That Will Enrich, Entertain, and Inspire You."


"Technology can become the "wings" that will allow the educational world to fly farther and faster than ever before—if we will allow it."
~ Jenny Arledge