Cogwheel Archive

Rotary Cogwheel | 10.02.2014

September 29, 2014

Today: Tom Bisell, Trials of a Bike Shop Owner

Birthdays: Laurie Williams (9/28), Robert Bierman, Michelle Lasswell and Kurt Larson – Yes, THE Kurt Larson — (9/29) and Tom Durkin (9/30).

Next Week: Meet the Exchange Students (V. Dilley)

Last Week:
iPads are changing the face of education.

Kim Briske, Director of Technology at Northfield School District, calls the new technology “transformative.” In her estimation, it will advance the four tenets of 21st century learning: communication, critical thinking, creativity and collaboration.

The iPads bring several game changers to the field, she said. First, they make the Internet available to every student and increase students’ comfort level with digital technology. They are vehicles for creating and sharing new content. They invite teachers to learn new skills, and their presence in an educational setting help students learn to use iPads for productive purposes, not just entertainment.

Every child in grades 6-12 now has a dedicated iPad . Each elementary classroom has six common iPads. “Schoology” is the base software application, and to smooth the transition to the new technology, the schools have adopted the SAMR model — Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition.

Kim offered a few examples of how the iPad technology has been used in Northfield Schools:

  • The band teacher can teach and quiz music theory on the iPad which frees up more time for playing instruments during class;
  • Interactive exercises such as a pizza parlor game apply math skills to real life and incorporate critical thinking;
  • Syrian refugees were brought into the classroom via Google Hangout for a live interactive discussion about their plight.

Kim grew up in Northfield and now lives here with her husband and two children. She taught in Farmington for nine years before taking her position in Northfield.


Mini Classification:

Matt Hillmann is the Director of Administrative Services for the Northfield School District. Matt and his wife, Mary, have three children: Jackson, a 10th grader; Grace, an eighth grader; and Peter, fifth grader.

Matt grew up in the Finger Lakes region of New York. He moved to Minnesota 20 years ago and has held many educational positions over the years, both classroom and administrative. He came to Northfield from Belle Plaine to be the Director of  Human Resources & Technology. He took on the finance position as well and is now the Director of Administrative Services.

Matt handed off the technology responsibility to Kim Briske, who was chosen from a pool of 42 applicants. She is responsible for overseeing the management of the school district’s 2,200 iPads.


Lisa Havelka (Estenson), our new director of the Northfield Convention & Visitors Bureau; Susan Quinnell (Quinnell); Charlie Duarte (Halverson) from Apple’s Education Unit; David Rod (Lawlor), Leo’s son-in-law and an American Airlines pilot; Sten Johanson (Willgohs), from Denmark with Delfi, which was owned by our former exchange student’s (Nico) father

Scholarship Enhancement: Matt Hillmann

First Job: Scott Richardson worked for a canning factory during the summer. It encouraged him to attend college.

Past Northfield Rotary Club meeting videos on Youtube: NorthfieldRotaryVideos

— District Foundation Event in Oakdale on Saturday, Nov. 1.

— Our fall fundraiser, the Turkey Trot, needs sponsors – $1000, $500, $200. The event will be held Thursday, Nov. 27, starting at Weitz Center this year.

—John Ophaug reported that Bob Lampe, a member of Rotary since 1961, has moved to assisted living in Roseville.

— Matt Rich presented Chris Weber with a pin from Rotary International for sponsoring two new members for 2013-14.

Coming Up:
Oct. 16 — Wokie Daboh, Project Blackboard (Maus)
Oct. 23 — Char Carlson, chair of the Northfield Library Board (B. Carlson)
Oct. 30 — Sam Daly, Sniffing for Bombs in Afghanistan (Fossum)