Learning Through Technology Update

The Learning Through Technology Team at the Maine Department of Education is committed to helping teachers integrate technology into their classrooms in a way that improves student learning outcomes and achievement. We have three new ways to engage with educators this year that are designed to gather input and build capacity.

Professional Learning Survey

We are looking for input from all Maine educators as we develop a schedule of offerings for professional learning during the 2017 – 2018 school year. We want to know which topics are of most interest to you and the format in which you’d like to see the professional learning offered. The survey should take 5 – 10 minutes to complete. We’ll begin reviewing responses on September 18th! Please complete the survey today and share the link with any other educators in Maine that you know!

Link to survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LTTPL2017

School Visits

We have a new model for school visits. The goal has shifted from looking at MLTI implementation to recognizing the positive efforts of educators who are integrating technology into their learning environments and providing support to schools as they continue to leverage their technology for better student outcomes. Please reach out to Amanda Nguyen, Digital Learning Specialist at the Maine Department of Education (Amanda.Nguyen@maine.gov) if you’d like to schedule a school visit.

Link to school visit information: http://maine.gov/doe/mlti/schoolvisit/index.html

Learning Narratives Blog

We have a new blog that captures the stories of Maine educators who are leveraging technology for learning. Stories come from individual educators and also from our new school visits. The goal is to share models with other schools and educators. If you want to share your story, or recommend educators who we could contact to share their stories, please reach out to Amanda Nguyen, Digital Learning Specialist at the Maine Department of Education (Amanda.Nguyen@maine.gov).

Link to Learning Narratives blog: https://learningnarratives.wordpress.com


Maine students and educators gather at UMaine for annual MLTI Student Conference

MLTI Student Conference.PNGOne thousand Maine students and hundreds of Maine educators gathered at the University of Maine at Orono last Friday for the annual Maine Department of Education (DOE) Maine Learning Through Technology Initiative (MLTI) Student Conference.

The event is an annual one day technology conference designed specifically for students who participate in the Maine DOE’s statewide technology program for students.

Students attend the event to partake in several blocks of workshops, including sessions on virtual reality, music, artificial intelligence, creating videos, 3D printing, app development, drones, storytelling, info graphics, and much more! See a full list of this year’s workshops.

At the end of the conference students took part in one “uber” session where all attendees worked together with the featured the Maine band The Ballroom Thieves, who played live music that incorporated various learning elements which engaged audience participation with devices.


More information about the 2017 MLTI Student Conference

Greater Technology Grant Flexibility Proposed

The Department announced on March 15th that many of the schools ending their 2013 MLTI participation in June would be eligible for grants to continue providing 1:1 mobile computer devices to their students and staff.

The grants are available for:

  • Students and staff in 7th and 8th grades, where the school did not refresh its devices in 2016 students;
  • High school staff in schools where students are provided 1:1 mobile devices at local expense, provided their MLTI participation ends in June; and
  • High school staff in schools that have not participated in MLTI before, if they provide 1:1 mobile devices for their students at local expense.

The prior announcement focused on grants to continue 1:1 device programs, which is the intent of the program. In response to inquiries from technology directors and schools that wish to pursue more innovative approaches to achieving the same objectives as a 1:1 program, the Department is refining our guidance.

With this announcement, the Department is expanding the types of educational technology that can be funded by the grants.

The Department is seeking a statutory change that will allow more flexible use of these grant funds. Pending that change, the Department will fund 1:1 programs as well as programs that do not provide devices on a 1:1 basis. The focus of the programs must be on integrating technology into the classroom, for the purpose of enhancing student outcomes, and may include hardware, software, educational materials and support for educators in the use of technology in teaching.  Schools will be asked to explain how student learning will be enhanced by the program, and how they will measure that enhancement.

Eligible schools may apply for the 1:1 program or the alternate program (not limited to 1:1). If the statutory change needed to authorize use of funds for the alternate program is not approved, those schools may re-apply for a grant for a 1:1 program.

Application materials are posted on the MLTI Website. For additional information; contact Deb Friedman, MLTI Project Manager at 624-6834 or deborah.friedman@maine.gov.

PRESS RELEASE: Maine student artwork selected for screensaver challenge

Twenty Maine student artists will have an audience of more than 70,000 students and educators for their artwork starting this fall.

More than 200 students submitted images to be considered for the Maine Department of Education (DOE), Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) Screensaver Challenge.

An annual tradition of the Maine DOE, students in grades K-12 can submit artwork at the beginning of the year to be selected for display. The images are scored and selected by an independent panel of three judges.

The winning student artists will have their work showcased on MLTI devices for the 2017-18 school year. In addition, the student artists will have their registration fees waived for the 2017 MLTI Student Conference, and their winning pieces will be printed and displayed at the Department of Education’s Augusta offices from June 1 – August 31, 2017.

The selected students are listed below. Their artwork is available for viewing on the Maine DOE Website.

  • Griffin Vulture, Anna Labbe, Grade 10, Freeport High School
  • Abstract Ocean Life, Elizabeth Young, Grade 9, Freeport High School
  • Duck at Dawn, Bennett Hight, Grade 12, Freeport High School
  • Fallen Leaves, Zoe Fox, Grade 12, Freeport High School
  • Lights of the City, Griffin Agnese, Grade 11, Freeport High School
  • House Barn, Julian Lindholm Fiske, Grade 12, George Stevens Academy
  • Beneath the Surface, Corinne Ahearn, Grade 9, Greely High School
  • Eel Life, Maddie Hall, Grade 8, Greely Middle School
  • Knot a View, Alexis Merchant, Grade 10, Jonesport-Beals High School
  • Seeing Through, Emily Segal, Grade 7, Lincoln Middle School
  • Dandelion, Ana Rogers, Grade 9, Mount Desert Island HS
  • Scraffito, Erin Corcoran, Grade 8, Oceanside Middle School
  • Dream, Zabina Zimmerman, Grade 1, Pond Cove Elementary School
  • Bikes, Megan Gordon, Grade 11, Camden Hills Regional High School
  • Children’s Space, Corilie Green, Grade 10, Freeport High School
  • Wolf, Grace Neal, Grade 11, George Stevens Academy
  • Hummingbird, Toni MacDonald, Grade 12, Houlton Middle/High School
  • Moose, Blair Tweed, Grade 11, Wells High School
  • Lost and Forgotten, Samuel Livingston, Grade 12, Wells High School
  • Umbrella, Lauren Dow, Grade 10, Wells High School

For more information about the Maine Learning Technology Initiative Screen Saver challenge visit: http://maine.gov/doe/mlti/student/artchallenge/index.html

Learning Technology Grants Program Announced

The Department is announcing an evolution to our support of technology in public middle schools and high schools. Beginning July 1, 2017, MLTI Grants will be available to public middle schools and high schools to fund technology and support for 7th and 8th grade students and staff, and for staff in high schools with locally-funded student programs.

The grants will support programs that use technology to enhance teaching and learning in eligible schools and grades. The grant program takes the place of an “opt-in” to the programs offered in the past 3 years by HP and Apple, under a contract with the State.

Schools will apply to the Department of Education with a brief description of their proposed education technology programs, and a budget for the period of the grant.

The amount of the grant is up to $200 per eligible student or staff seat, each year, for up to 3 years. The length of the grant and the amount per seat will be based on the school’s proposed program and budget.

The grants provide flexibility to schools, but maintain some requirements designed to continue the basic structure of the current MLTI program. Any program funded by a grant must provide a personal digital computing device for each student, and must include professional development to support teachers’ use of technology to enhance student learning.

Further details for the grant program, including the application and the deadline for application submittal, will be provided as they are developed and posted on the MLTI website at http://maine.gov/doe/mlti/participation/index.html . MLTI programs in schools that opted in to HP or Apple solutions in 2014, 2015 or 2016 will continue as is, and are not affected by the grant program.

For additional information, contact the MLTI Office at mlti.project@maine.gov or call Deb Friedman, MLTI Project Manager at 624-6834.