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Showing posts from February, 2017

Curiosity in the Classroom - HyperDocs & The 5th C

You cannot be a life-long learner if you are not curious.
If you've ever spent time with a child you know that their curiosity is almost endless. They will bombard you with question after question as they seek to understand the world around them. This is an incredible aspect of our human intellect that must be nurtured and encouraged into adulthood by teachers.

Too often we get so caught up in content and testing, that we lose sight of the bigger picture. We must actively encourage our students to never stop asking questions and pursuing the answers. We must find ways to encourage and inspire curiosity in our classrooms. We've created a few HyperDocs for students to explore the power of curiosity.
Inquiry with Images - Getting Started New Your What's Going on in This Picture?Reboot the Noggin Episode 3 - Exploring Curiosity Image Source
We've also created a Staff Development HyperDoc based on the classroom Curiosity HyperDoc
Explore Curiosity PD HyperDoc - Staff Development…

GSuiteEDU Resources to Support Productivity and Efficient Workflow

"Modern technology has become a total phenomenon for civilization, the defining force of a new social order in which efficiency is no longer an option but a necessity imposed on all human activity." - Jacques Ellul
Teachers can't use yesterday's pedagogy combined with today's technology to effectively teach and learn. Educators must grow and adapt to meet the needs of all learners in a digital world. Teachers need to become more than the source of information the best educators are facilitators of learning. 
Technology is a tool that can help enhance, personalize, and differentiate education for all learners. Today's technology provides teachers and students with unprecedented access to a world of resources and ideas. Technology should be used to inspire life-long learners in student-centered classrooms.
There are many incredible Chrome Extensions, Google Apps, and Drive Add-ons that can help teachers and students save time. 
Apps and Extensions to Support Produc…

Chromebook Essentials - Getting to Know Chromebooks for Education

Chromebooks are great devices to support communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking in future ready classrooms. Teachers and students benefit from quick access to the web, interactive apps, creation tools, workflow extensions, formative assessments, and so much more . . . 

In an effort to get learners started with Chromebooks, we've crowdsourced a list of essential questions for exploration.
Chromebook Exploration - The Skill Set Document To support these essential questions for Chromebook exploration we've created the Chromebook Essentials Site. This site will help teachers, students, and parents learn more about the essential characteristics of these devices.  The site focuses more on "How do I use a Chromebook?" and less on "Why use Chromebooks for Learning?". We have created the Wicked EdTech Website to share additional resources that support instructional practices and pedagogy in a 1 to 1 classroom.

Here are the sections of the site:

Exploring & Reflecting - The Learner-Centered Classroom with Chromebooks

Student-centered learning, also known as learner-centered education, broadly encompasses methods of teaching that shift the focus of instruction from the teacher to the student.SourceI have always believed that the more I can involve the students in the learning process the greater the experience. I think I learn best by doing and I carried this mindset into my classroom from day 1.

Before EdTech, I was the primary source of knowledge in my classroom. My classroom was very teacher-centric and I enjoyed talking at my students. We had fun, but it was often difficult to know what my students understood at any given moment. This led to my students waiting for me to distribute the content knowledge. They would happily copy stuff down, often with too little understanding and no critical thinking. If my students didn't understand something they either asked me or they didn't learn it. When the students took ownership with a project or creation it typically only demonstrated what I alr…

Exploring Mastery Learning with Quizlet Live

We are working through an Energy PBL Unit in my AP Environmental Science class. I am mixing in a variety of formative assessment tools to help my students and myself evaluate our learning. Some of these formative assessments are graded for points, but I try to find ways to maximize the points earned for every student.

Today I tried something different with Quizlet Live. The students and I enjoyed the experience and I think we all learned something. Our goal was to make sure each group was able to master the key terms connected to Nuclear Energy. Here is a brief outline of the process we used today.

Create a 12 question Quizlet. The Quizlet for this activity was primarily a vocabulary checkpoint.  I've also done Quizlet Live with definitions, quotes, and general concepts. If you are creative Quizlet can be more than a vocabulary tool. Quizlet has a great collection of searchable Public Quizlets that can definitely save teachers timeCreate a new Game and display the code for the class…

Digital Mapping and Virtual Field Trip Resources for Teachers and Students

Maps are a useful tool for many of us in our day to day lives, but many classrooms don't take advantage of some of the incredible digital resources that are connected to maps and virtual field trips.

Maps can provide classrooms with some incredible opportunities to create lessons based on creativity, critical thinking, and collaboration.
Here are a few resources connected to Digital Maps and Virtual Field Trips that classroom teachers may find useful:
Game using Street View images that drops the player in a random location and challenges them to work out where they are.Smarty Pins
A fun and interactive game that tests players’ trivia and geography knowledgeMy Maps
Create custom maps to share online with Google My Maps We recently used My Maps as part of our Biome Unit.Google Arts & Culture - Places
The World Wonders Project is a valuable resource for students and scholars who can now virtually discover some of the most famous sites on earth.Street View Treks
Trek the world w…

Putting the Fun into Formative Assessment - Engaging Learners

Student engagement is the product of motivation and active learning. It is a product rather than a sum because it will not occur if either element is missing.” - Elizabeth Barkly

Learning should be exciting and fun. Assessments can also be fun? All types of assessments have a place in a classroom, but relying on only a few traditional types of assessments makes the classroom a dull place for both the teacher and the students. 

Engage students with fun game-based assessments. Students are more engaged when they are active learners in the process and the assessment. Game based assessments can enhance engagement and boost excitement for both students and teachers. There are many great formative assessment tools that can bring a competitive game show experience to your classroom.

One of my favorite formative assessment tools is Kahoot. (While I love Kahoot, I do think that using a mix of formative resources is important. Too much of anything good is not always a good thing. Be sure to check…