March, 2010

Ideas to Increase Parent Communication in Schools

A Principal's Reflections

Last night I participated in #edchat on Twitter and the topic of discussion focused on techniques teachers could use to improve communication with parents. I added my ideas on the topic and attempted to link techniques and strategies I utilize to both teachers and administrators. Educators must be experts in effective communication techniques, especially when it comes to parents.

Why A PLN?

The Web20Classroom

Later this week I will be presenting at the North Carolina Technology In Education Society (NCTIES) Annual Conference. For one of my sessions I will focus on how I discovered the power of the Personal Learning Network (PLN), how I built mine and how other educators can do the same. Whenever I do sessions like this I always get the question, why? Why a PLN? Why do I need to connect to other educators? What is the point? For me, the advantages are obvious.


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The PowerPoint Coma

The Electric Educator

Lately I have observed my students entering a state of mind I like to call the "PowerPoint Coma." As soon as I throw some slides up on the screen their eyes glaze over while their pens continue to move, taking down the required notes. PowerPoint used to be a cutting edge technology. If you wanted to be hip, you used PowerPoint. It has been overuse and abused to a point that it is essentially useless for communicating effectively.

Defining culture

Connecting 2 the World

Perhaps one of the most difficult things in speaking of culture is determining what we mean by "culture."

Intent Signal Data 101

Intent signal data helps B2B marketers engage with buyers sooner in the sales cycle. But there are many confusing terms used to describe intent data. Read this infographic to better understand three common areas of confusion.

Multimodal Fluency -- What does it mean?

mauilibrarian2 in Olinda

The four literacies: visual, multicultural, media, and digital. This 43-slide show wraps up neatly and concisely what a 21st century classroom should like, and why. Multimodal Fluency: Classroom to the Cloud View more presentations from Sean Cordes. Sean Cordes is an Assistant Professor of Western Illinois University. Thanks to Bobbi Newman of Librarian by Day , who shared this on her Libraries and Transliteracy page. (??? ? This post was originally published at mauilibrarian2 in Olinda.

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Lightning in a Bottle: My GTAdmin Experience

A Principal's Reflections

As I sat in the Houston airport waiting for my flight back to Newark, I couldn’t help but to sit and reflect on my experience at the first ever Google Teacher Academy for Administrators. The conference was held on March 5, 2010 in San Antonio, Texas. This was by far the most intense, and rewarding professional development venture that I have ever been a part of. Brought together by innovative practices, and a desire to integrate Google educational tools with sound pedagogy.

Social Media In The Classroom.

The Web20Classroom

Recently at NCTIES Kevin Honeycutt spoke on Personal Learning Networks. I did not attend the session however a quote from it, tweeted and retweeted several times really resonated with me (and several others). He said, "I am smart. But with my PLN, I am brilliant!" So true! The connections we make with those in our PLN help to make us brilliant.

My 2010 MACUL Conference Sessions

The Electric Educator

I am currently sitting in the opening keynote session of the 2010 Michigan Association in Computer Learners Conference (MACUL) with 3,000 fellow educators. It will be a full two days of learning related to educational technology. Here are the sessions that I''ve chosen to attend in the next few days. Hope to see you there! Thursday: Transforming the Classroom With Google Docs Forms Grand Gallery E 10:00 AM 11:00 AM.

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Field Guide for Change Agents: TL Virtual Cafe FREE Webinar

The Daring Librarian

TL Virtual Cafe: Field Guide For Change Agents on PhotoPeach What it means to be a Change Agent in Educational Technology Monday April 5 - 8:00 pm. EST Special Guests: Ben Hazzard and Rodd Lucier Hostess: Gwyneth Jones Join Learn Central ENTER Webinar Room How this digital phenomenon came about and how it came to the Cafe. I was watching from the sidelines in a snowstorm, dejected about not being at Educon this year.tapping my PLN via Twitter came across this product.

The Guide to Accessible Learning for Associations

Speaker: Dan Streeter, Vice President of Learning Strategy & Development at Blue Sky eLearn

In this 45-minute webinar, we’ll share real-world accessibility solutions and hidden tools in the applications you use every day such as Zoom, Microsoft Suite, Adobe Acrobat (PDF), Articulate Storyline 360, and Articulate Rise 360. This webinar will help you evaluate the accessibility of your current learning efforts and learn about the tools needed to ensure your eLearning is in alignment with the latest Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (proposed WCAG 2.2).

danah boyd, on (1) Privacy on the Internet and (2) Why Teens Like to Hang Out on Social Networking Sites

mauilibrarian2 in Olinda

(1) I always tell my students that privacy is never guaranteed on the Internet. I still believe that, but cultural anthropologist Dr. danah boyd (yes, her name has no caps), considered by many to be the "high priestess" of social media, says that everyone expects privacy on the Internet and that they are entitled to it. She gives examples of how Facebook, Google, and other developers can work toward insuring that privacy.

Common Sense Tech


Ken Royal of Scholastic Administrator Magazine recently wrote a blog post which resonated with me. As much as I love the world of social media and all of the benefits it has to offer education, I, too, worry about educators who run headlong into using free web resources with K-12 students. Are they really thinking about all of the possible implications of what they are doing?

The Importance of Building Connections

A Principal's Reflections

This past Friday an exciting event took place at my high school due to the efforts of Colleen Tambuscio, who is a fantastic Holocaust teacher. The U.S. Department of Education visited with a group of Polish educators to learn more about how our school teaches the Holocaust and genocide. The nine educators who visited New Milford were part of the International Leadership Program of the U.S. Department of Education.

New Posted Resources 03/31/2010

The Web20Classroom

Science and Math Simulations tags : simulations , science , math , favorite Edutopia News / March 24, 2010 tags : google , favorite Five Best Online File Sharing Services - Online File storage - Lifehacker tags : filesharing , storage , favorite CTAP4: Cybersafety Education Links tags : cybersafety , favorite Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here

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.

Wiiboard Commercial

The Electric Educator

Thanks for subscribing to my blog. I always appreciate feedback on my posts. You can find me on Twitter (@jrsowash), Google+, Linkedin (jrsowash), and YouTube (jrsowash). interactive whiteboard MACUL10 smartboard wii

Animation ABC's - How IT works

The Daring Librarian

Amusing and informative (but snarky & slightly inappropriate) overview of how animation works from Cirkus of New Zealand. Thank goodness for new animation resources & sites like Go!Animate Animate and Xtranormal that take all these steps out of the way for you! Sqworl Animation sites & resources for school use. Some for media/classroom/unit marketing and some to use with kids!

Google Fiber for Maui?

mauilibrarian2 in Olinda

Think Big with a Gig What if Google Fiber picks Maui for its experimental fiber network that''s 100 times faster than the present Internet connection? It would mean a jump-start for businesses, high-speed global educational interactions, and speedier working of our government. Hawaii tested 48 among the 50 states for Internet speed. You can test your Internet connection at Speed Matters. Google Fiber could bring us up to speed (pun intended), and then some.

Magical Google Forms

A Principal's Reflections

Through my recent experience at the Google Teacher Academy for Administrators I learned about the form feature in Google Docs. Up until this point I had only used the word processor and presentation functions in Docs. I''d be lying if I didn''t state that I was so fascinated by forms. Immediately I saw administrative value in terms of collecting data and organizing it in a spreadsheet. The best part is that you don''t even have to create the spreadsheet! It is done for you as the form is created.

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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.

More Administrators Need to Blog

A Principal's Reflections

Let me just come out and say it, I need more administrators (Principals and Superintendents) to blog. I would be willing to guess that I am not the only educator that feels this way. Below is a hypothetical letter that explains my rationale. Dear Principal/Superintendent: Good morning! You are probably wondering why you are receiving this letter out of the blue. Let me quickly explain. I am a 35-year-old high school principal who has many years of educational administration ahead of him.

Winds of Change: Student Style!

A Principal's Reflections

This morning I had a breakfast for all members of student government. Over the course of the year I like to have at least three meetings like this to hear their ideas on the culture of New Milford High School and ways to improve it. My main objective is to empower them to be catalysts of change and leave a lasting impact on the school.

New Posted Resources 03/30/2010

The Web20Classroom

10 Steps to a Gmail Makeover « Thumann Resources tags : gmail Fun Nights Teach Parents How to Teach Kids tags : parents , favorite Audacity Tip Sheet tags : audacity , favorite Videos | Science.TV tags : science , videos , favorite What Are the Seven Reading Comprehension Strategies? tags : reading , favorite Must Watch Educational Videos on YouTube tags : youtube , videos , favorite Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here

A Different Kind Of #Edchat This Week

The Web20Classroom

At 8pm on Tuesday March 30, 2010, Sir Ken Robinson will participate in a Classroom 2.0 Webinar. The topic will be a discussion of his latest book, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything. You can read more about the webinar at [link] ) For #edchat this week we would like to do a "warm-up" discussion about passion in education. Mainly, what does passion in education look like, and, how could passion promote change in education? Why do this?

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!

Broadband For All

The Web20Classroom

I don''t really remember when exactly I started using the Internet at school. It was sometime in high school but I didn''t really pay much attention to it. In college I was in the first Freshman class in the state of North Carolina required to bring a computer when we started in the Fall. Now, if you don''t have one you are part of a very small minority. Think about trying to teach students today about various Web 2.0

New Posted Resources 03/25/2010

The Web20Classroom

Apple Learning Interchange - iPod touch. Touching student lives in the classroom. tags : ipodtouch , favorite Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here

How Does Search Work?

The Web20Classroom

Recently, Google created a video for the general public on exactly (well at least as much as they want us to know) how their search engine works. At only 3.30 minutes it is cram packed full of information. The video is on You Tube so if you reading this in an RSS reader or some place where it is blocked you might not see anything.) They also created a couple other videos on how Google Apps works (great for understanding Cloud Computing) and a video completely dedicated to their AdSense product.

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New Posted Resources 03/24/2010

The Web20Classroom

How Google Works tags : google , favorite Tags: They''re Not Just for Prices Anymore tags : tags , tagging , favorite Strategies for Differentiating tags : Differentiation , favorite A Dive Into the Google Wave Extensions Gallery – WebWorkerDaily tags : googlewave , favorite Google Earth for Educators: 50 Exciting Ideas for the Classroom | Associate Degree - Facts and Information tags : googleearth , favorite Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here

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.

What We Have Here Is A Failure To Communicate!

The Web20Classroom

One of the toughest issues facing my school (and district for that matter) is parent communication. Yesterday in a meeting after school our leadership team discussed ways to have more parents involved in what we are doing. Meaning, we offer nights several times a year were parents and students are invited in to discuss gangs, drugs, achievement, relationships, lots of different issues that parents might have questions about and that the school and guests can provide answers or resources to.

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Free Teaching Resources From Microsoft

The Web20Classroom

I recently discovered some great, new, teaching resources from Microsoft. Most of them are centered around their products like Photostory, Movie Maker, and Bing, but the the Teaching Guides have lots of good ideas and tips that would work for a wide variety of products. For me, one of the more handy guides was the Digital Storytelling guide.

New Posted Resources 03/19/2010

The Web20Classroom

13 Cool Ways to Find Images in Flickr tags : Flickr , images , favorite Take Online Modules - For Teachers (Library of Congress) tags : PD , libraryofcongress , favorite Personal Learning Networks Are Virtual Lockers for Schoolkids | Edutopia tags : PLN , edutopia , favorite Angela Maiers Educational Services: My Twitter Resources Library tags : Twitter , favorite Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here