Spotlight on Murrieta Valley of the Lost Gems

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Murrieta Valley Unified School District educators are ready for an adventure in professional development with their new game, Valley of the Lost Gems. This Indiana Jones style quest challenges teachers to work their way through four levels and five missions to earn Gems, badges and prizes. The levels feature spots around the Murrieta Valley area: Emerald Hot Springs, Old Ruby Mill, and the Santa Rosa Plateau. Educators who complete the fourth and final mission will earn a 'Diamond in the Rough' badge.

The game was launched in March by technology support specialist Linda Muhlhauser, who rolled out the program site by site, training teachers in each school on how to play the game. With all of the tools they need, almost half of the district's educators have started learning, growing and owning their professional learning.

Valley of the Lost Gems features technology and much more, with missions and activities that include:

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Equity & Access
This mission encourages teachers to develop strategies that ensure equitable access through high-quality, engaging, rigorous and relevant learning experiences for the full range of learners in their classrooms.

Find strategies for teaching English Language Learners in all subjects by reading the ELA/ELD frameworks.

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Instructional Practices
This mission increases teachers' skills and understanding of updated strategies that support implementation of new standards.

Gamify an activity by either using points or badges.

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Tech Tools
This mission exposes teachers to the best of the Microsoft Office 365 tools and other digital resources to collaborate, organize, create, and teach more effectively and efficiently.

Using a free Piktochart template or your own original template, create a presentation, poster, infographic, or report related to your subject matter, classroom management, or any other education related topic you might find relevant. 

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Future Ready Classroom
This mission is all about expanding strategies in lesson design and delivery, while integrating technology tools. Educators will learn how to create a blended learning environment that will allow for personalized and competency-based learning.

Show a developmentally appropriate video from the Common Sense Media library to your students.

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Professional Growth
This mission gives educators the know-how to leverage social media, online communities, and online resources to grow their practice, tell their edu-story, and become more connected teachers.

Learn more about your subject area, either through a MVUSD training or attending an event outside of the district.

"The Technology Department at Murrieta Valley Unified School District is committed to providing a high-quality education for every child in the district, regardless of where they live or the school they choose to attend. Serving the needs of our growing community of students, teachers, administration, and staff requires a secure, robust infrastructure, state of the art equipment, and innovative software. These tools support both learning in the schools, and the rigorous assessment and analysis necessary to meet the district’s educational and operational goals."

We wish all of the MVUSD educators safe and exciting travels on their quest for PD knowledge!

 Instructional technology leader, Melissa Grabarkewitz earns her “Crusader” map poster, game sticker and a free lunch for completing the Game Basics activities.

Instructional technology leader, Melissa Grabarkewitz earns her “Crusader” map poster, game sticker and a free lunch for completing the Game Basics activities.

My hope for playing this game is to learn new ways to incorporate technology into my classroom. I’m looking forward to growing professionally and can’t wait to learn some new strategies and discover new resources.
— MVUSD educator