March, 2012

Free Common Core Aligned Lessons and Web 2.0 Games to Play on your SMART Board!


Attention: FREE Lessons and Interactive Resources! I am a BIG FAN of open source sharing and teacher collaboration. Blog superstar Richard Byrne was my inspiration for starting my blog. to share free and amazing resources with teachers. As teachers, we all are tight on funding when it comes to gathering supplies and resources. I hope you enjoy the lessons the many great teachers have begun to share on ClassConnect - together we achieve more. yes , I just pulled out the good ole'' T.E.A.M analogy!

Why You Should Give Edmodo A Try

The Web20Classroom

Recently I attended the North Carolina Technology In Education Society''s (NCTIES) Annual Conference. Each year it gets bigger and bigger and we try to find more and more ways to engage with the attendees to make the conference more meaningful and to carry on conversations beyond just the sessions. So this year we did something new. We partnered with Edmodo to create the NCTIES community.

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Children Stressed to the Breaking Point Due to Standardized Testing

A Principal's Reflections

Recently New York City made public teacher evaluations based on student standardized test scores. This proceeded the state of New York''s decision to change how educators are evaluated, in part by connecting the standardized test scores of students into final ratings. The following letter was shared with me by a friend whose daughter is in the New York City Public School System.

So, You Want An App?

The Mobile Native

Here are some sites that provide a wide variety of resources on apps. Teachers With Apps APPitic Smart Apps for Kids I Education Apps Review Moms With Apps Apps in Education Android 4 Schools Fun Educational Apps Best Kids Apps Tony Vincent provides great ways to evaluate educational apps. Ways to Evaluate Educational Apps.

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.

Trying to Ban Facebook is Not the Answer.


Image Source It is our professional opinion that you get your child off Facebook. From Pinecrest Preparatory Middle-High Administration Letter to Parents , February 22, 2012 When I first read and watched a news story about this Florida charter school''s letter to parents encouraging them to get their kids off of Facebook because of the problems social media activities were causing during the school day, it got me thinking.

More Trending

Dropbox + Pinterest + SMART Exchange for Teachers + Common Core = ClassConnect


Flip your Classroom, Just Store your Favorites , Find Common Core Content, and Share your Lessons “ ClassConnect saves me time building lessons so I can focus on engaging & inspiring my students. Eric and I just finished our first round of presenting this amazing tool to teachers for the first time since his product launched last week. The positive response was overwhelming. The credit goes to Eric. He created an amazing tool for teachers - and he''s only 20 years old !

A Brief History Of #Edchat

The Web20Classroom

As one of the founders of #edchat I get a lot of questions about the what, where, when and why. So here is everything you need to know (or wanted to know) about #edchat. The History #edchat started out of a series of conversations between myself, Tom Whtiby and Shelly Terrell. Tom is a bit of an instigator and likes to push people''s thinking about various topics in education. One day he was asking several of these though-provoking questions and he was getting comments from all angles.

The Best Ideas for Our Schools

A Principal's Reflections

This past week I was fortunate to attend the NASSP 2012 Annual Conference as a presenter, 2012 Digital Principal Award recipient, and most importantly a learner. On Friday morning I attended a session facilitated by Dr. Gary Stager , a progressive educator whose work I have come to know over the past couple of years. Gary’s message is one that resonates with me and many other educators who frequent digital spaces. All around the world there are ideas that are put into action.

iPads in Students' Hands


This was our first year with iPads in the elementary classrooms, purchased with Title funding. Training with Tony Vincent We''ve had several trainings with Tony Vincent , starting with a three hour introduction and a two hour follow up with fabulous center ideas for literacy, fluency, and spelling. How I see them used in the classrooms After Tony Vincent helped us get started, we''ve become more comfortable with using them, and we''re at the point where we were figuring out new ways to use them.

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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).

Why Mobile Learning?

The Mobile Native

Mobile Learning

School Administrator Uses of Evernote & Must-Have Evernote Extensions

The 21st Century Principal

Evernote is a must-have application for the school administrator. This week, I conducted a concurrent session on it and other web tools at the North Carolina Technology in Education Society’s annual conference. From that conference, here’s 7 Ways Administrators Can Use Evernote : Evernote Desktop App Screenshot Note Taking: This is the most obvious use of Evernote since that is the application’s purpose. Evernote has some capabilities that make note taking even more powerful.

Win a Document Camera and a HearALL Assessment Recorder from Learning Resources


HearALL™ Assessment Recorder ( click here ) Product Description : Hear way beyond! Authentically assess students’ skills and participation in small groups. Designed with 4 omni-directional microphones to capture clear recordings with dramatically reduced background noise. Play back, download and share files (WAV or MP3) with specialists or parents, or upload to portfolios.

Taking A Step Back And Thinking Critically About Technology

The Web20Classroom

I am probably going to take a lot of heat for this post. But maybe that''s a good thing. Perhaps more conversation is needed. I remember where I was when I heard the iPad announced. I was sitting in my office when I was still working at a school. I had the live blog from Techcrunch on one screen and Twitter on the other. Tweets were flying by with all sorts of comments about the name (both good and bad) and what the device could do. I admit. I had to have one. I was in love.

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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.

Moving Schools Forward With BYOD

A Principal's Reflections

The following is a guest blog post by Dr. Greg Farley. Greg is the Director of Technology at Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District and an Adjunct Professor and course developer at the Graduate Schools of Education at Monmouth University and Drew University. Greg also conducts workshops at K-12 schools and universities and mentors doctoral students and administrators in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Check out his blog Embrace, Adapt, Enhance.

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Announcing Fun & Functional (v. 1.1)


One of my first clinical experiences in graduate school involved planning and implementing classroom-based lessons in the school setting. It really shaped my thinking for the years to come, as I learned how important semantics was to students'' functioning in the classroom. We would do book-themed lessons and many activities in which students would describe items related to the activity.

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5 Ways to Use Google+ in your Classrooms

The Electric Educator

Google+ has tremendous promise for K-12 classrooms. Handouts, circles, and selective sharing are three features that will be heavily used and relied upon by teachers. Here are my suggestions on ways to use Google+ in a K-12 classroom. Please share your ideas with me by leaving a comment! 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). google

How to Become a Connected Educator: Developing an Effective PLN

The 21st Century Principal

According to Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach and Lani Ritter Hall, “Teachers must learn to model connectedness and enable students to develop personal learning networks, made up of people and resources from both their physical and virtual worlds but first, teachers must become connected collaborators themselves.”

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.

Interactive White Board Apps for iPad: ScreenChomp, ShowMe, Educreations


The ShowMe Story - HD from ShowMe on Vimeo 3 IWB Apps - My Personal Review of Plus and Minus Features click play on each IWB video below to see the features of each app There are many interactive white board apps; however, these are my 3 favorite ! Screen Chomp by TechSmith Labs ( click here ) Show Me ( click here ) Educreations ( click here ) Cross-Comparison of the 3 Apps - All Truly are Great! Which Apps are you using? What features do you like best? Leave your comments below! ?.

Checking Out Class Connect

The Web20Classroom

I am always interested in easy ways to share content and collaborate on projects with others in quick and easy ways. So when I heard about Class Connect and it''s ability to do just that, my interest was piqued. First some back ground. When the founder, Eric, was in high school, bored, a teacher asked him what would make him interested in the class. He wanted to work with the other kids in the class and use technology at the same time.

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Connect, Share, Learn

A Principal's Reflections

It has been an incredible journey since I decided to become a connected educator back in March of 2009. As I sit here writing this post, I cannot help but reflect on the positive changes that have taken place at my school and with me professionally. Through connected learning and sharing, I have become better equipped to lead change at New Milford High School and to begin to transform the teaching and learning process. All one has to do is read this blog to experience what I am talking about.

Animonths- Explaining + Animation = Explanimation


When interactive whiteboards (IWBs) first arrived on the scene with their accompanying software, one of the best aspects was teachers'' easy access to recording features so that they could preserve each lesson as a video file and share it later via their webpages or other means. This assisted students who needed information repeated, and also made really good use of the visual teaching capabilities of IWBs.

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!

Lead, Coach, and Build Capacity


Building capacity in the school district means improving and strengthening the learning in our students, employees, teachers, administrators, school board, and community. Coaching is a great way to build capacity, and leaders naturally build capacity. Finding leaders to assume leadership roles is an important part of the process. Please be aware that I don''t believe a title makes someone a leader, it''s just who they are.

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4 Ways School Administrators Can Use Dropbox

The 21st Century Principal

Dropbox is on my short list of must-have school administrator web tools. It offers users and easy-to-use application and any-device access. Dropbox is my virtual file cabinet that follows me around 24 hours a day. But the truth is, this web app can offer school administrators so much more beyond scrapping flash drives and DVDs. With a little thought, it can streamline quite a few things we do. Here''s four big ways to use Dropbox as a 21st century administrator.

Interior Design for your Classroom!


Photo Credit: Schoolgirl Style by Melanie That''s right - Classroom Couture ! When I ran across Melanie''s photos on Pinterest, I went crazy! I spent three years at Michigan State studying Interior Design prior to entering teaching. It was hard leaving my passion for design; however, I wasn''t invested in the C.A.D computer aided drafting) aspects of the field. This is interesting because now that I''m in teaching, it''s the technology that has become my passion.

#ASCD12-A Presentation On Creating Social Media Policies For Schools And Districts

The Web20Classroom

Earlier today I had the honor and pleasure of presenting at the Annual Conference for ASCD. It felt like more of a homecoming as the conference this year was in Philadelphia, a city I have been to several times over the past 2 years for conferences and meetings. The presentation was the featured morning session and livestreamed. I presented with Sam Walker , an Instructional Technologist at Kimmel Farm Elementary School in my district.

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 Seeds of Innovation

A Principal's Reflections

The following is a guest blog post by Dr. Franklin Turner who recently visited my school. A few weeks ago, I made a commitment to visit schools that are using social media, smartphones, texting, and other digital technologies, as a vital part of daily classroom instruction. The only criterion that I had was the school had to be entrenched in their use of the above-mentioned technologies. There are plenty of schools that have very expensive artwork on their classroom walls (i.e. Smart Board).

Wrapping Up (Maybe) Animonths: Draw a Stickman, Episode 2


I feel like I have possibly a few more posts on animation in me, but maybe not. I saw The Hunger Games movie this weekend and my head is so cloudy.I loved it (HUGE fan of the books) and am consumed with thinking about it! It''s affecting my executive we''ll have to see. Anyway, I was excited to recently receive an email from the folks at (I must have put myself on their mailing list) announcing the 2nd Episode of Draw a Stickman.

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@EdTechSandyK at #SXSWedu via Storify


Instead of doing the usual summary/wrap-up blog post for the SXSWedu 2012 conference, I decided to try a new-to-me tool I saw used a few times throughout SXSWedu week. Apparently, it went into public beta in April 2011 , but I''ve missed it or glossed over it since then. Storify allows users to mashup content from multiple social media sources such as Twitter, YouTube, and Flickr to create a flow of events. One session I attended used Storify to archive the session.