Angela Stockman

Coordinator, Staff and Curriculum Development

Erie 1 BOCES

Hi Everyone...
I was thrilled when I received the invitation to be a part of this initiative with Will and Sheryl and all of you. I had the pleasure of working with Sheryl at High School's New Face just last summer, and my experiences with the PLP have enriched my professional and personal learning experiences this year as well.

As a Coordinator on the Instructional Resources Team at Erie 1 BOCES, I spend my days engaged in delivering or receiving professional development and helping teachers and administrators make sense of various data, align curricula, and improve instruction. Prior to this, I was an English Language Arts teacher at the middle and high school levels for 12 years, and during that time, I had the opportunity to begin using online journals with students through a grant-funded At-Risk Readers program that I led.

My family loves to blog, and we've had a variety of different projects going at the same time for some time now. Extended family members and far away friends keep up with us online, and this year, my daughter Laura began an online service project through a blog in response to the New York State PTA Reflections contest prompt that challenged students to write about how they can make a difference. Laura's blog was inspired by the memory of her grandfather. Initially, Laura assumed that her family members would be the only readers following her. This is when we learned how powerful post tagging can really be. Several different groups of people were drawn to Laura's page after her very first post, and thanks to the efforts of several online philanthropists, experts in the field of nonprofit technology, a handful of journalists, Sheryl, and Will, word of her efforts spread rather quickly throughout cyberspace. Over the last few months, Twenty Five Days to Make a Difference has received almost 30,000 visitors and much support. This has enabled Laura, who is only 11, to witness firsthand exactly how the web might be used in positive and productive ways to support very real causes in her own community.