September, 2010

What Does Classroom Innovation Look Like?

A Principal's Reflections

Innovation and 21st Century learning mean different things to different people. This little girl sums up my views in a simple, yet direct fashion: The role of an educator in the 21st Century relies on transformations in teaching and learning to meet the needs of students in today''s society. Innovative instruction contains many of these elements: Are you an innovative educator? Change Innovation Opinion

New Posted Resources 09/30/2010

The Web20Classroom

Build Literacy Skills with Wordle - Copy / Paste by Peter Pappas tags : literacy wordle favorite Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here


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Flip your classroom through reverse instruction

The Electric Educator

Have you ever experienced the unique and rare moment when, after doing something the same way for year and years, you have an epiphany and wonder, "why am I doing it this way?" Most of the time the answer is tradition, that''s the way we''ve always done it. At one time, there probably was a sound, logical, reasonable explanation for the decision to do it that way. The Radcliffe Camera in Oxford Take, for example, the Bodleian Library in Oxford.

Elevating the Education Reform Dialog, Live on Monday

The Learning Revolution Has Begun

Between the NBC "Education Nation" Summit , Waiting for Superman , The Oprah Winfrey Show , and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg''s $100 million gift to Newark city schools , there has been a lot of media attention focused on the topic of education reform. Unfortunately, much of it has excluded actual educators, let alone students. Furthermore, and perhaps as a consequence, the dialog has become divisive, blaming, and ultimately counter-productive.

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.

Grow Your Own Personal Learning Network

Nik Peachey

Well this is my first blog posting for quite a while, but I'm hoping to have a lot more coming up very soon. This is just a quick posting to share a session on building your own Personal Learning Network, that I did for teachers in British Council Bilbao recently (25th September 2010). The session was part of a larger conference that was happening all over Spain to celebrate 70 years of the BC in Spain. You can watch a recording my conference presentation here.

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You Can't Beat Free Learning

A Principal's Reflections

Tomorrow I welcome back my teachers and am extremely excited to share with them some of the things I have been working on over the summer. Probably the most significant is the Tri-State Educational Technology Conference (TSETC) that will be held at New Milford High School on Saturday October 2, 2010. This event came together so quickly as a result of a conversation I had with Schoology as we threw around some ideas on how we could collaborate.

New Posted Resources 09/29/2010

The Web20Classroom

Unfriend, Unfollow, Unsubscribe: How to turn people away

The Electric Educator

As social media has gained popularity, many books and blogs have been written, many videos recorded, and many prezi''s built on how a person can increase their friends, followers, and subscribers. An entire mini-economy has sprung up promising to provide friends, followers, and subscribers, for a nominal fee. However, to my knowledge, very little research has been done on how to get your current friends, followers, and subscribers, to unfriend, unfollow, and unsubscribe from you.

Intro to Movie Maker Video Podcast


The following video was created to satisfy requirements of my Week 2 assignment in EDLD 5363 Multimedia and Video Technology to create a brief video editing software tutorial. Although only an audio podcast was necessary for this assignment, after reviewing Windows Movie Maker and learning about its features, I wanted to use it to create a project. I took the option to add video to my assignment.

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).

AP: Libraries launch apps to sync with iPod generation

mauilibrarian2 in Olinda

Our library is a warm and fuzzy place in an idyllic setting. It''s also a place where exploring new ways to infuse technology into the curriculum is encouraged and celebrated. This news story tells is like it is -- libraries are keeping up with the times, and should always be part of the mix. The desirable bottom line? Access to information for all.

Remove Distractions from YouTube


Our students tend to be distractible. Correct me if I am wrong. I believe YouTube has enormous potential for instruction (hopefully your district does, too, and doesn''t block it), but nothing annoys me more than when I take the time to locate a fun instructional video on YouTube, and while I am presenting it, student B says "OH, there''s a link to _, can we watch that too?"

New Year, New Adventures

A Principal's Reflections

Each September I am excited like most educators to get back to business doing everything I can to help students succeed. Don''t get me wrong, the summer months are invaluable to me as I spend my time immersed in the flow of information that my social networks provide, developing action plans, analyzing data, and hiring staff. Many of the initiatives that I am about to pursue either came directly or indirectly from my Personal Learning Network (PLN).

New Posted Resources 09/28/2010

The Web20Classroom

Doing a "FLIP" Across the Curriculum tags : flip flipvideo favorite What is Prezi?| The Committed Sardine tags : prezi favorite Learning with ''e''s: The truth about blogging tags : blogging 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.

5 Ways to become an online teaching Ninja!

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

Reflection on Collaboratively Producing a PSA: Be Careful What You Post Online


In a talk given at the 2008 Apple Education Leadership Summit , Randy Nelson, Dean of Pixar University, defined collaboration with these words: Collaboration for Pixar means amplification. The amplification you get by connecting up a bunch of human beings who are listening to each other, interested in each other, bring separate depth to the problem. Bring breadth that gives them interest in the entire solution. Allows them to communicate on multiple different levels.

New technology demands for the 21st century classroom

Connecting 2 the World

Let me begin by defining the 21st century classroom. It is not the stagnent classroom of my childhood or university. Rather it crosses grades, generations, locations, and cultures. And yet, walk into any classroom today and it will physically look like the classroom my father sat in over 70 years ago. Education today is life long, formal and informal, and dynamic.

FREE Apps Today: Montessori Crosswords and Draw With Stars


Please check out Moms with Apps today for a description of two great free apps available from the U.S. (I I feel I need to qualify that after a Canadian reader- thanks Janelle- pointed out that a free app wasn''t free there) iTunes store today, Friday, September 3. Montessori Crosswords (only on iPad, sorry, and now that I have one I could test it out!) would be a great way to work on word naming, categorization, and phonemic awareness.

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.

Social Media in Education

A Principal's Reflections

The other day Bill Ferriter told me that he was working on an article for ASCD and asked if I would answer a few questions. Of course I obliged as we are working on a book together for Solution Tree Press and I have come to know and greatly respect him as a member of my PLN. He is the author of The Tempered Radical. If you have never read his blog I highly suggest you do! My answers to Bill''s questions provide a snapshot of my social media in education journey.

Tell Arne Duncan What Is On Your Mind.

The Web20Classroom

Recently Microsoft, MSN and Bing launched Redu , a platform for conversations centered around school reform. Over at the Redu site there are lots of articles on what is working in public education and how simple changes can make big differences. One project they have going on right now is Ask Arne. In case you didn''t know Arne Duncan is the U.S. Secretary of Education.

How Web Video is Driving Innovation

The Electric Educator

There has been a quiet hum concerning a recent TED talk presented by TED Curator Chris Anderson. I watched his talk this evening and was blown away (again) by Anderson''s insight. His basic thesis is that web video is driving innovation at a pace never before seen. Watch it, you won''t be disappointed. 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

Video Editing Reflection and Software Evaluation


NOTE: This reflection is part of an assignment requirement for Lamar University course EDLD 5363 Multimedia & Video Technology “Media production engages and excites; it leads to unexpected discoveries, increased self-awareness and esteem, sharpened critical thinking, analytical skills, group work skills, and ability to communicate ideas” ( Garrison, 1999 ). In following educational blogs and research over the past year and a half, I have read themes similar to Garrison’s many times over.

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!

The discussion about US education

Connecting 2 the World

Recently, there has been a national discussion of education in the US within our media. NBC and the Oprah Winfrey Show both had programs about education in the last two weeks. The final verdict: tenure is the reason our schools are failing and the responsibility of education is in the teachers' hands alone (they must be accountable for failing schools). I look at part of this as a result of the charter school movement and a movement to break up teachers unions to bring down costs of education.


Constitution Day is Coming Up!


Constitution Day is October 17. All classrooms (really not including you, necessarily, but it couldn''t hurt) are required to conduct a lesson on the U.S. Constitution on that day. I really like working on concepts around government with students- it''s a topic that is way abstract for them, but so functional and important to learn.

Video 54

Community Conversations: Using Google Forms, Docs & Wikis to Connect Outside Your School

The Daring Librarian

((re-post from my MHMS Media Blog - showing how we use our Google Forms, Google Docs and Wikspaces to have a conversation with our community!)) Murray Hill Middle School strives every day to put into practice our motto “excellence is our standard” and in doing so we need your help and your action! Utilizing Google forms, docs, and wikipages we provide many ways for you to feel connected to our school and to have a voice! You suggest the books & we buy them!

Wiki 37

New Posted Resources 09/24/2010

The Web20Classroom

AllThingsPLC — Research, education tools and blog for building a professional learning community tags : plc favorite Five Ways Twitter Will Make You Smarter — Communications Catalyst tags : twitter 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.

"Google: More than Search" published in MACUL Journal!

The Electric Educator

I''m happy to announce that the article I submitted to the MACUL journal was published in their Fall issue (see pg. 14-15). The original idea for this article stems from the video podcast series [iTunes link] that I published on the MI Learning channel of iTunesU K12. Most people think Google is just a search engine, being unaware of the other innovative products they have produced.

Web Conference Experience


The following blog post is a requirement for an assignment in Lamar University course EDLD 5363 Multimedia and Video Technology. I attempted to attend a web conference live on August 31st for EDLD 5363 Multimedia and Video Technology, but due to a glitch I was never admitted to the conference. I was grateful, however, for the conference chat log and link to the recorded conference that was sent out the next day.

New Collaborative Virtual Spaces: Sending a forwarding address

Connecting 2 the World

Over the last few years, I have collaborated with a number of people that I either have never met face to face or who live too far away to meet on a regular basis face to face. I moved from listservs to discussion boards to blogs and now to facebook. What I have noticed is an initial period in which I participate as a spectator (i.e. a member of the listserv receiving updates but not posting), then I move on as an active member.