Using the SAMR Model to Think About Managing Digital Distractions

By |December 3rd, 2013|

In the most recent #luthed chat, the group tackled the topic of “managing digital distractions.” As more schools are exploring 1:1 programs and students are jumping between mediums and technologies as part of their formal learning, this topic is gaining increased attention.  It also resonates with many educators in 1:1 schools because they often discover that traditional “classroom management” methods do not work effectively.  Consider the following four integrating technology changes that inform the challenge of managing digital distractions. I am using the SAMR model of integrating technology to describe how each change in integrating technology impacts the way that we have to reconsider managing digital distractions.

Managing Digital Distractions in the Substitution Classroom

As more schools and teachers are implementing classrooms where each student has a device, the default response for many teachers is to simply use the devices as a substitute for a traditional method or tool.  Instead of having students take a quiz on paper, they do it on the device. Instead of having students take notes in a notebook, they do that in Evernote or a GoogleDocs. […]

NLSA Exemplary Schools Webinar Series Schedule

By |October 29th, 2013|

NLSA Exemplary Schools Webinar Series
The National Lutheran School Accreditation (NLSA) 2013-2014 Best Practices webinar series is intended to recognize exemplary schools for their use of technology and innovation in the classroom. This series provides a way for schools to share their best practices with other schools and educators.
How to Participate
To participate in the live webinar, simply enter the NLSA Best Practices Series Webinar Room at 4:00 PM CST on the day of the event. No registration is required.
Where to View Past Webinars
To view past webinars, view the NLSA Best Practices Archives or watch the NLSA Best Practices playlist on YouTube. You can also visit Lutheran School Portal for an archive of the webinars.
2013-2014 Webinar Schedule
Some events and times are to be determined.
September – Trip Rodgers
Crean Lutheran High School – Irvine, CA

September 17: Sustainable Competitive Equity

October – Drew Gerdes
Christ Lutheran School – Phoenix, AZ

October 8: Church-School Unity
October 22: Capstone-Service Projects – Scott Schumacher
October 29: Advisory Program – Drew Gerdes

November –  Drew Gerdes
Trinity Lutheran Early Childhood Center – Clinton Township, MI

November 12 – “Jesus Glass” – Seeing the world through Google Glass may be the next big thing, but seeing children and families through Jesus’ eyes […]

Teaching to Fish: The Power of Self Assessment

By |October 29th, 2013|

October 29th, 2013 at 5:00pm CST: If we want to help students become lifelong and self-directed learners, then that means helping them to learn how to learn.  Part of this is helping them take responsibility for the assessment of their own learning.  In this live session, we will focus on this topic of self-assessment, exploring a number of strategies and approaches that can help students develop this important life and learning skill.

Call for Researchers and Practitioners in Lutheran Education

By |July 4th, 2013|

I am excited to draw your attention to the Projects page on the site that will provide a list of pending, current, and recently completed projects related to Lutheran education.  The goal is to leverage teams of researchers and practitioners across institutions that have a shared interest in a specific research question or a practical project (curricular or otherwise).  In recent history, there have been few such team-based on Lutheran education, but is my hope that we can leverage this site as a way to bring together people around important questions and projects that are relevant to Lutheran education.  You will note that I listed a few of my current pending research projects as a starting point and an invitation for others to join me.  If you are already serving on a research or project team or would like help building a team around a question related to Lutheran education, please contact me and I will gladly assist.  Also, if there is a significant question, problem or opportunity in Lutheran education that you think warrants more careful research, please consider sharing your […]

A Case for Missional Lutheran Education

By |May 31st, 2012|

Below is a presentation shared with the Concordia University Wisconsin School of Education faculty.  This is the beginning of a dialogue about how we can intentionally and effectively seek, support, and shape missional Lutheran education around the world.  Of course, in order to pursue such a goal, we must first take the time to build a common understanding of what we mean by missional Lutheran education.  That is largely the purpose of the presentation below.

A case for missional Lutheran education from Bernard Bull

Reshaping Lutheran Education: A Systems Approach

By |April 27th, 2012|

The newest published contribution to the discussion about Lutheran Education comes from a doctoral dissertation that was successfully defended less than a month ago at Fordham University.  Rev. Dr. Jeremy Pekari wrote and defended his dissertation entitled Reshaping Lutheran Education: A Systems Perspective.  Before moving into the review, I should disclose my personal involvement in the project.  I was a reader and member of Dr. Pekari’s dissertation committee.

This “think piece” provides a fresh perspective to the discussion of Lutheran education within the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod.  Informed by the works of individuals like John Westerhoff, Pekari makes an early and clear distinction between the notion of schooling and that of education.  Pekari points out that the schooling-instructional model of teaching and learning has been the dominant and, in some cases, only model used by many Lutherans to think about education.  This is likely due, in large part, to the expansive P-2o Lutheran school system throughout the United States.

While there are benefits to the schooling model, this is only one of many ways of thinking about education.  In order […]

Perspectives on Human Beginnings – Teaching About Creation and Evolution in Lutheran Schools

By |March 1st, 2012|

As many of you know, there are two main journals that focus upon education in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.  The oldest journal, the Lutheran Education Journal, comes from the good people at Concordia University Chicago.  The second journal, Issues in Christian Education, is housed at Concordia University Nebraska.  Of course, there are also theological journals that frequently include scholarship that has direct or indirect relevance to Lutheran education, especially as one thinks about education more broadly than the schooling instructional model that Dr. Jeremy Pekari recently highlighted in his doctoral dissertation.

As we look at these two journals, the first is, among other things, the place where a number of individuals are able to publish articles that emerged as part of their doctoral dissertations.  And it is more common in this journal to see articles that represent what some many think of as research in qualitative, quantitative, and mixed method approaches.  Issues in Christian Education is, in this way, a very different journal.  It consists primarily, but not exclusively, upon think pieces and essays that fit more broadly into […]

Is Theological Training Important for Teachers in Lutheran Schools?

By |February 11th, 2012|

Dissertation Brief

Stueve, H. (2008). Called to serve: The perceptions of the value of theologically trained teachers in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. Fielding Graduate University.

Dr. Heather Stueve of the Concordia University Education Network (CUEnet) completed her doctoral dissertation a couple of years ago.  She tackled a significant issue in Lutheran education today, one that has potential implications for the future of Lutheran education.  Her research focused upon answering the following question: “What are the attitudes of pastors, administrators, and teachers toward the level of theological training needed by teachers in Lutheran classrooms and are these attitudes congruent with what the Lutheran church has historically taught and practiced regarding the ministry of the teacher?”

Statement of the Problem

Stueve notes that, in 2004, the Next Generation Task Force of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod reported that 11,000 of the 18,000 teachers in Lutheran schools were not “certified as Lutherans Teachers either by study at Lutheran Church- Missouri Synod (LCMS) University or by colloquy.”  The task force further noted a decline in the number of teachers who are certified, and expressed concern […]

Learning at the Foot of the Cross – Book Review

By |February 7th, 2012|

Joel Heck and Angus Menuge’s edited work, Learning at the Foot of of the Cross: A Lutheran Vision for Education (2011) is a rich an substantive addition to the conversation about the distinctives of Lutheran education.  In their introduction, they note that there have been limited texts on a Lutheran philosophy of education, and that their text is an effort to help remedy this problem.  Since 2000, we have had two excellent overviews of the distictives of Lutheran Education.  Most in the United States are familiar with one of them, William Rietschel’s An Introduction to the Foundations of Lutheran Education.  This was noted by Heck and Menuge in their introduction.  However, an equally in-depth contribution to the theology and philosophy of Lutheran education was offered in Malcolm Bartsch’s Why a Lutheran School?  Education and Theology in Dialogue, written within the context of the Australian Lutheran school system.  As such, most in the United States have unfortunately overlooked this substantive work. That is a small oversight in Heck and Menuge’s introduction, but their point remains true, that little has been written regarding a philosophy of Lutheran […]

Toward a Common LCMS Philosophy of Education

By |February 6th, 2012|

In a recent edition of the Lutheran Education Journal, Sandra Doering and Rachel Eells reported on their research related to philosophies of education in Lutheran schools around the United States.  This is an exciting contribution to an important discussion about what is distinct in Lutheran education.  Based upon data collected from sixty respondents, the researchers described six emergent themes ranging from “teaching God’s Word” and “integrating the faith” to “helping families” and “academic excellence.”  The full article is currently available here.

There has never been a collective philosophy of Lutheran education the LCMS, despite several excellent resources on the subject.  See Rietschel’s An Introduction to Foundations in Lutheran Education, Jahsmann’s What’s Lutheran in education?: Explorations into principles and practices, or Bickel and Surburg’s Readings in the Lutheran philosophy of education (if you can find a copy) for examples of such summaries.  Such resources typically describe more “ought” than “is” when it comes to a philosophy of Lutheran education.  They are rich with excellent philosophical and theological considerations related to Lutheran education.  However, apart for the historical descriptions in these texts, they do not […]