User Generated Education

Beginning the School Year with “Who I Am” Projects

User Generated Education

It’s the start of a new school year. I am often baffled why teachers (all levels including college) jump right into covering content when the students are in a state of disequilibrium. wondering about the other students, the teacher, and the classroom climate.

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The Joy of Watching a Lesson Come Alive

User Generated Education

Number one on my love list of teaching is spending time with my fantastic students. High on my list is also my love of designing and creating learning activities for my students. I get such joy of seeing my designs come to life in the hands of my learners.

Physical Computing with micro:bits and Makecode

User Generated Education

I am quite fond of facilitating physical computing activities with my learners as I’ve discussed in Scratch and Makey Makey Across the Curriculum . For that post I created the following graphic to represent the benefits of physical computing.

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Benefits of Using Board Games in the Classroom

User Generated Education

As a kid growing up, I loved board games. loved playing The Game of Life , Clue , and Sorry with my friends as a preteen and then Backgammon throughout my undergraduate years. I definitely liked the thrill of winning but equally so interacting with my friends while we played the games.

Building the Foundation for a Modern K-12 Classroom

K-12 looks different these days. But one thing remains the same: you need a reliable learning platform that serves as the foundation for teaching and learning––for all students, in a variety of learning experiences.

Social Entrepreneurship with Elementary Students: A Perfect STEAM Lesson

User Generated Education

I have done a social entrepreneurship unit with three groups of gifted students, grades 3rd through 6th. It was one of my favorite units. ever, and from their reactions, I believe it was one of theirs, too. I call it a perfect STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) unit.

A STEM-Driven Marble Run Using Instructables and Tinkercad

User Generated Education

STEM lessons are a strong focus in my 4th-6th grade gifted classes. I teach at two Title 1 schools with primarily Hispanic students. Our district works to identify students often underrepresented in gifted education programs.

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Student Choice and Voice Can Equal the Best Day Ever

User Generated Education

As is true for a lot of progressive educators, I have a belief in and attempt to practice the implementation of student voice and choice: Sometimes this means fully letting go of the reins so learners become fully self-directed.

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Offering Electives to Elementary Students

User Generated Education

Electives, as we all know, are classes that students choose to take. Electives are typically chosen based on interests, passions, a need to learn something new, and/or because of future goals. It is not clear to me why elementary students are rarely offered elective courses.

Stop Motion Animations: A Fun and Engaging Language Arts-Educational Technology Integration

User Generated Education

One of my favorite things to do as an educator is to create lessons plans that help students address content standards through authentic learning activities and develop transferrable skills. For the stop motion animations, both English Language Arts Common Core and ISTE Standards were addressed.

Increasing Equity and Access: A Canvas Case Study of Virtual Arkansas K-12

Virtual Arkansas, a fully online school, had a mission to provide high-quality courses in rural and urban areas throughout the state. How would they simplify content creation while enhancing learning? Discover 3 key insights to transform your classrooms.

Building a Sustainable City

User Generated Education

As I’ve discussed before, I offer electives to my 4th-6th grade GT students (see Offering Electives to Elementary Students ). They chose paper engineering. A few started making city structures. They then stated that they should make a city.

Artificial Intelligence: Chatbot Activities for Students

User Generated Education

My gifted students, grades 4th-6th, selected Artificial Intelligence, as their elective during Spring, 2022 semester. For more about this see Offering Electives to Elementary Students.)

Choosing Not to Grade Student Work

User Generated Education

I wear many hats as an educator. I teach graduate courses in education and counseling. I am a seminar facilitator for student teachers, and I teach gifted education at three Title 1 elementary schools. I have said for decades that I love teaching but I hate grading.

Engaging Students Right From the Start

User Generated Education

I, like many of you, have been doing remote teaching since March, 2020. I am a student-centric, hands on/minds on teacher.

Unlock the Power of Formative Assessment

Learn how a thoughtful formative assessment approach can help teachers understand where students are in their learning, inform instruction, and in turn, positively impact student learning outcomes. Get the guide today!

Increasing Engagement, Creativity, and Innovation with Minds-On/Hands-On Activities

User Generated Education

COVID has forced many teacher to do remote learning in a virtual environment. Some have struggled with student-centric and hands-on learning. I have always been an experiential educator. Translating that to a virtual environment has been a little challenging but definitely doable.

Scratch Monster Mash: A Language Arts/Technology Project

User Generated Education

[link]. This project was developed by Colleen Graves. I found information about how to do it at the Makey Makey blog post entitled, Scratch Coding Literacy Project Ideas for Makey Makey micro:bit Inventions. She designed it to be used with Scratch programming and the micro:bit micro-controller.

Among Us Classroom Style: Another Case for Game-Based Learning

User Generated Education

A few weeks ago, I blogged about my gaming club in Video Games for Relationship- and Team Building. It is still going very strong. Students from the three schools where I teach gifted students look forward to it all week long.

Virtual Improv Activities for Remote Learning

User Generated Education

[link]. Given my experiential education background, I’ve always been fond of and have used group team building and problem-solving activities with all of the age groups I teach – for example, see Team-Building with Elementary Students.

6 Tips for EdTech Evaluation by Adult Learning Institutions

Many continuing adult education institutions have turned to technology used by higher ed with the following benefits: elevates teaching and learning, scales to address changes in staffing, enrollment and budget, and protects student and institutional data.

Transmedia, Digital Storytelling Project

User Generated Education

As someone who, for years, has been using educational technology, I have said the often stated quote, Technology won’t replace teachers, but teachers who don’t use technology will be replaced.

Paper Bobsled: STE(A)M Olympics-Related Lesson

User Generated Education

I’ve discussed experiential learning in The Imperative of Experiential and Hands-On Learning and the lesson I describe in this post meets the characteristics I described in that blog post: In an effort to engage students both in a STEM activity and learn more about the Olympics, I created a lesson on bobsledding. Standards Addressed.

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Toy Take Apart and Repurposing: A Creative Problem-Solving Lesson

User Generated Education

Toy Take Apart and Repurposing is always a great favorite both with my gifted students and with my campers during my summer Toy Hacking and Making camp. I purchase battery-operated toys from ebay and thrift stores.

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Virtual Team Building Activities

User Generated Education

I, like many others, was forced to move a face-to-face college class to virtual synchronous meetings in Zoom. This term I am teaching a group dynamics course. One of my goals is to have my students experience similar dynamics and processes as they would face-to-face.

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6 Strategies for Using Actionable Data to Impact Student Success

Educators need effective tools to drive student success. The trend to use actionable, comprehensive data—like attendance, assessments, grades, and more—is an effective way to give teachers the visibility they need to make a difference. Videri gives teachers and administrators access to comprehensive, integrated data so they can easily filter, drill down, and analyze data—to get the information that they really need, when they need it, and improve student outcomes. Download the eBook today!

Watching Them Learn

User Generated Education

I have been very intentional in the public school teaching jobs I have chosen. First I was a PE teacher, now I am a gifted education teacher. I chose these jobs because I believe in active, hands-on, and joyful learning.

Anti-Racist Activities for Upper Elementary and Middle School Students

User Generated Education

I am planning to do anti-racist activities with my elementary students (5th and 6th graders) this coming fall. When you’re essentially [teaching] a kid to be anti-racist, you’re deliberately encouraging them to talk about race and Racism.

Halloween Displays: A Perfect STREAM (Science, Technology, wRiting, Engineering, Art, Math) Lesson

User Generated Education

Wow, wow, wow! My students finished their displays in time for Halloween after spending many, many hours working on them. Now, they are in display cases in the lobby of our elementary school. I am so proud of them and rightfully, they are very proud of themselves, too. They worked so hard on them.

Lip Syncing Characters Using micro:bits and Hummingbirds

User Generated Education

I am quite fond of facilitating physical computing activities with my learners as I’ve discussed in Scratch and Makey Makey Across the Curriculum. For that post I created the following graphic to represent the benefits of physical computing.

Keeping Students Safe and Productive on Devices

Speaker: Aaron Webb, Jamf

In our webinar, we’ll explore the full range of Jamf education products to protect students, including quick and easy tools for IT admins, powerful apps for teachers to ensure student safety anywhere, and parental engagement tools.

Increasing Student Participation During Zoom Synchronous Teaching Meetings

User Generated Education

Due to Coronavirus, many schools are moving online, and teaching through Zoom meetings. If it is only being used to present content to students, then why not just record videos and have students watch them on their own?

Top Five Blog Posts During 2021

User Generated Education

I love to blog. I do so for several reasons. First, it provides me with a means for reflecting on my teaching practices as well as having a written and often graphic record of my pratices.

Science-Based Valentine Day Projects

User Generated Education

I really like using maker education and STEM/STEAM projects to celebrate holidays and special events.

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Universal Skills for Learners: Increasing School Relevancy

User Generated Education

Kids are learning – but for way too many it occurs outside of the school environment rather than during school.

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The Best Ways to Use Managed Apple IDs at Your School

Speaker: Aaron Webb, Jamf

In our webinar, How to Best Use Managed Apple IDs at Your School, hear the real-world experience of Steven Palomo, IT Director at Beverly Public Schools, regarding how he successfully managed his entire tech stack.

The Role of Kits in Maker Education and STEM Learning

User Generated Education

There has been a fair amount of criticism leveraged against “paint-by-numbers” types of STEM and maker kits. This criticism revolves around the stifling of the creativity of learners. I contend that learners need foundational skills so that they can be freed up to be creative.

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Civic Engagement for Young People During Social Distancing

User Generated Education

Many of us feel a bit helpless to help others out during these coronavirus social distancing and isolation times. This also true for kids and young people. There are actions they can take as part of their home schooling. They can participate in civic engagement and activism activities.

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Pi Day: An Example of an Interdisciplinary, Engaging Lesson

User Generated Education

I have the privilege of teaching my gifted elementary students at two Title 1 schools for multiple years. Each year I have special thematic days for which the students get very excited, e.g., Halloween and Day of the Dead “Wars,” Valentines Day, Book Celebrations, and Pi Day.

Video Games for Relationship- and Team Building

User Generated Education

I had the privilege of taking a workshop on Fortnite Creative facilitated by Steven Isaacs. I decided to take this workshop because I knew that many of my students (3rd-7th grade gifted students) were playing Fortnite.

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White Paper: Enabling digital creativity with Augmented Reality in K12 education

We have conducted 2 research projects on teaching with AR. This research has been conducted with the UiO and the UiS. The resulting white paper is an in-depth look at the state of creative learning through the use of 3D modeling and exploration in AR.