Chrome Music Labs - Creativity at its Finest

Google Chrome recently released a new resource called Chrome Music Lab to support Music in Our Schools Month. It is an incredible site. The site is a combination of fun and learning in an interactive interface. There are a variety of different interactives that users can experiment with. If you look closely you can even see some of the science connected to sound and music. 
Music is for everyone. So this year for Music In Our Schools month, we wanted to make learning music a bit more accessible to everyone by using technology that’s open to everyone: the web. Chrome Music Lab is a collection of experiments that let anyone, at any age, explore how music works. They're collaborations between musicians and coders, all built with the freely available Web Audio API. These experiments are just a start. Check out each experiment to find open-source code you can use to build your own. - From the Site
There are 12 different "experiments" represented by different boxes on the main site page. Each of the experiments has several layers. Here are a few basic tips for using the site:

  1. Your first click on the box will give you the name of the experiment.
  2. Click a second time will open up the interactive portion of the experiment.
  3. Each of the experiments is a little different. So be sure to click on the different options so you don't miss something. Click, click and click some more. 
    For example:
    The Rhythm Experiment lets you set patterns of percussion by marking spots on the bottom of the screen. If you click on the arrows on the side you will get a different set of musicians with different instruments. Press play after you set it up and you have your own composition. The Bongo's and Cowbells are a favorite. (Last one in the experiment.)
    The Spectrogram is a single screen that allows you to visualize the sounds a variety of different objects make. You can even turn on your microphone and visualize your singing voice. 

Watch the video below to learn a little more before visiting the site. 
Visit the site: Chrome Music Lab


Polling Students in Google Classroom - Quick Formative Assessment

Google classroom has become a powerful tool in many EdTech toolboxes. Since the Google for Education release of Classroom, it has quickly become a go-to tool for digital communication and paperless classrooms. 

Classroom's communication features include:
  1. Posting Announcements (Links, videos, and attachments)
  2. Posting Assignments (Links, videos, and attachments)
  3. Posting Google Forms (Polls and Assessments)
  4. Posting Discussion Questions (Backchannel and Exit Slips)
  5. Paperless distribution and collection of activities.  
Google recently updated the question feature in Google Classroom to include multiple choice questions. This will be a great tool for to collect formative data from students. The Google for Education Blog posted these 4 suggestions for ways to use the new polling options:
  • Post exit tickets
  • Help students self-monitor
  • Guide student discussions
  • Get feedback on your lesson from students.
Learn more about Google Classroom
Google Classroom Tips, Tricks, and Training Resources




What are the Essential Skills for an #EdTech Coach?

"If you were given the chance to develop and Ed Tech coach certificate - what college courses would it need to have?"
My first thought was to avoid focusing on the tools. My Masters in Instructional Technology courses seemed to primarily focus on the tools and less on the pedagogy of good teaching. Most of these tools no longer exist. I did think about instruction as I learned about the tools, but instruction was secondary to learning how to use the tools. Instruction should be first! 

My next thoughts were about a few of the resources we've used to plan professional development. We always try to start with the idea that technology can serve to enhance a good lesson. We try to remember that technology alone does not have the power make a bad lesson great. Technology only enhances what is already there. Great teaching must come first or the power of instructional technology is most likely wasted. 

All this being said, here are a few of the resources I shared in my response:

Specifically, I would probably focus on these 5 big concepts:

    What courses / concepts do you think would be essential for an #EdTech Coach? 

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