August, 2011

Taking Care Of Your Digital Self

The Web20Classroom

One of the areas of focus for me in my district this year is teaching teachers and students how to take control of their digital identity and turn it into something positive and something they can be proud of. Too often each year students find themselves in situations that could be easily avoided if they understood what a positive digital footprint is and how to manage it. The same thing with teachers.

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Advancing Mobile Phones as Learning Devices

A Principal's Reflections

This morning I read a great article on PBS Media Shift by Audrey Watters entitled " Why Schools Should Stop Banning Cell Phones, and Use Them For Learning." Up until this past year the rule of thumb was that students could bring their phones to my school, but they could not be on, seen, or heard. This rule applied throughout the school day, on or at any school-sponsored functions, and was strictly enforced.


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Common Sense Social Media Policies in Schools: Working with It Instead of Banning It

The 21st Century Principal

Since the state of Missouri passed a law banning teacher use of online social media communications with students, states and districts across the country are stepping up their examinations of social media and its place in schools. Social media in general, and Facebook in particular has become the tool of the boogeyman and predator to lure children to do things they wouldn''t do otherwise.

Games for Children with Autism


Whiz Kid Games is a British resource of repetitive, well-paced and language-based games designed for kids with autism, but adaptable to other populations of students. Games such as "A Day at the Market" teach about scripting, sequencing, and schema, as well as being a context for vocabulary and sentence development. I have often found resources such as Whiz Kid Games to be great pairings with activities designed to build play scripts and interaction.

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.

Finding Hidden Talent in the New School Year


Summer break is over and schools are starting up again in the U.S. over the next few weeks. As you contemplate the upcoming school year, I want to issue you a challenge. But first, sit back and watch the video I have linked below. Watch it from start to end (six minutes isn''t a lot to ask). Watch even if you''ve seen it before - it''s probably been a while. Embedding of the video is disabled, so you''ll need to follow the link below.

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More Trending

Back To School Follow Up-How Do You Have A Great Start To The Year?

The Web20Classroom

Last week I asked what you do to have a great start to the year. The results are pretty cool. Loads of great ideas you can take into your first couple of days with your kids. Here are a few of my favorites: Take the time to smell the roses! Listen - really - listen to the kids and enjoy the moment of the first few days. There will be plenty of time to catch up after the first few days. Get to know the kids, the staff, and parents. You can''t turn back time no matter how we try. "I

Glogster EDU Gets Even Better

A Principal's Reflections

For those of you not familiar with Glogster it is a fantastic web 2.0 tool that allows educators to create FREE multimedia posters called glogs. Here is how the company describes their product: Simply put, a Glog is a kind of poster —fully designed by you! A Glog is a unique creation made up of text, images, music, and video. It can be colorful, edgy, emo, or rock—it’s up to you to make your Glog stand out. Glogs are a perfect way to express who YOU are!

Must-Have iPad and Smartphone Apps for Educators: Revised Edition

The 21st Century Principal

Next week, I will be presenting to a group of educators in my district on the subject of "Must-Have iPad and Smartphone Apps." I did a blog post a short time ago, and that list hasn''t change much, but there have been a few additions and deletions, mostly due to suggestions of those in my Personal Learning Network. Below is my current list of must have iPad apps that I will be sharing next week. Keep in mind I have not included content specific apps.

The Lion Roars! An SLP-friendly summary of Mac's New Operating System


The big buzz in the Appleverse lately has centered around the recent release of Mac''s new operating system OSX 10.7, better known as Lion. I thought it might be a good topic to post about, to let you know why you should care about this if you are a Mac or iDevice user. Chiefly, if you have a newer Mac, you might want to consider upgrading- Lion''s features are way cool!

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).

Powering Up in the Classroom

The Mobile Native

Defining Mobile Learning In education, the words "Mobile Learning" are starting to appear more often. Mobile learning is anytime, anywhere seamless learning. In other words, it is ubiquitous learning. A mobile learning device could be a laptop, net book, iPad, iPod Touch or even a smart phone. A Change in Thinking Many schools have labeled the use of mobile technology as a distraction in the classroom. Also, many schools have banned cell phones.


Who put the 'ass' in assessment?

Learning with 'e's

This week's eAssessment Scotland Conference was an interesting and thought provoking event. Hosted by the University of Dundee , the conference attracted almost 300 delegates from all over the UK, and farther afield and as could be expected, saw a number of papers presented on all aspects of technology enhanced learning and assessment.

Five Questions To Start The Year

The Web20Classroom

In most places students are either starting school or getting ready to go back. But before we get to far into the year it is a good idea to step back and reflect a bit about our place in the classroom and the year ahead. Here are five questions to consider as we start this new year: 1) What''s my hook? Everyday is an opportunity to capture the attention of our students. What will each day bring? Who know''s?

Positive Impact

A Principal's Reflections

Earlier this month I was fortunate to speak at #140edu in New York City. The title of my 15 minute presentation was "School Improvement One Character at a Time." I used this opportunity to discuss the positive impact that social media has had on the culture of my school and professional growth as a school leader. Here are 6 ways I am using social media in education to improve teaching, learning, and leading: Communication. Public Relations. Branding. Professional Growth/Development.

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.

Principals Who Are Classroom Teachers: Should This Be Common Practice?

The 21st Century Principal

This fall, I return to the classroom. Well, partially return to the classroom. I am going to be teaching Theater Arts this year, and serve as school principal. I''ve heard all the arguments over the years about administrators returning to the classroom to teach once in a while. The argument usually goes that administrators sometimes forget what it''s like to face a classroom full of students. They need to return to the classroom once in a while as a refresher and reminder.

Planet Orange


Planet Orange is a robust interactive site from ING investing company that teaches kids about money. After a quick free registration, you can guide kids to complete missions on 4 different "continents" in order to earn "OBucks." Because you have registered, you can save your progress within a group session and return to continue the activities. The site is fun, simple, and practical, and besides all of that, I really like orange.

Start Thrashing

The Electric Educator

"Travelanche" by Chiot''s Run via Flicker. Exam Cram by zslibrary via Flickr. Everyone thrashes. The question is when do you thrash? You''ve had this vacation planned for months. Your travel reservations were made well in advance. Yet despite your careful planning and preparations, you still find yourself up to 3am the night before you leave taking care of last minute details. You''re thrashing. You''ve known that this exam was coming for the entire semester.

Back to School Special:7 Web Savvy Starts to a New Year!

The Daring Librarian

It''s back to school time again! Darn those Target & Office Depot commercials! Last year around this time I blogged about using Google forms to create community conversations and decorating your library media center & classroom. This year I''d like to invite you back by popular demand to a FREE TL Virtual Cafe webinar called Back to School Special: Savvy Starts to a New Year!

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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.

Thoughts On Leading For #LeadershipDay11

The Web20Classroom

Watch this video. Did you really watch the video or are you just keeping reading? Come on, watch it. I promise you will like it. This is my favorite You Tube video by the way.) Now ask yourself some questions. 1) Do you have guts? This guy is my hero. He felt something inside his soul. The music made him want to move. He didn''t care what others would think. He got up and started moving. Kinda like in schools sometimes.

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Moving Forward

A Principal's Reflections

Cross-posted at Edutopia. School leaders across the country are meticulously planning for the upcoming year. This process has become more difficult as mounting challenges such as budget cuts and what seems like a relentless attack on the profession of education have taken their toll on staff moral. With this being said, quality leadership becomes even more essential in order to cultivate a school culture whose primary focus is on the learning and achievement of each and every student.

4 Smart Rules to Guide Administrators in Selecting iPad Apps

The 21st Century Principal

One of the most difficult decisions in tight budgets and deciding how to spend what little technology money we have.If your school or district is like mine, you just don''t have money to spend on iPad apps that won''t be used. I am not sure how useful these Smart Rules for Selecting iPad Apps are, but they have guided my decision making when looking for iPad apps. Functionality : In considering the functionality of an iPad app, I examine its functionality by asking a few simple questions.

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B-Movie TV


B-Movie TV is a fun site that features clips from old, silly American commercials and films that are overdubbed in another language. You can type in subtitles narrating or dialoging the scene, and can also choose to use text-to-speech or record over the clip. For more fun, you can switch to Bombay TV (see "switch channels") and do the same with Bollywood movies, which, not to be culturally insensitive, are notoriously over-the-top in terms of costumes, plotlines, and even frequent choreography.

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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!

Capacity. Are you Over it?

The Electric Educator

As a die-hard Internet user I live and die by the bandwidth of the network that I am using. The capacity of the network determines what I am able to accomplish. The principle of capacity applies to other areas of life as well: You can only serve someone else if you aren''t overextended. You can only demonstrate love to someone else if you aren''t emotionally drained. You can only help comfort someone who is overwhelmed if you aren''t overwhelmed. Over Capacity!

A Conversation Starter for Digital Citizenship


This video from Birdville ISD in Texas is well done and covers several digital citizenship and online safety situations which are relevant to the young students in our classrooms. Additionally, it serves as a great example of a student project. Think how much these young ladies must have internalized about digital ethics by participating in this video! What could your students learn from a similar project? digital citizenship digital storytelling ethics online safety

New Posted Resources 08/22/2011

The Web20Classroom

Moodle 100

A Milestone

A Principal's Reflections

Never in a million years would I have imagined that I would be here writing my 100th blog post. I never considered myself much of a writer. To be quite honest, I actually hated it. As I began my journey into the world of web 2.0 two and a half years ago, I found myself reading blogs for the first time. In my mind, reading was as far as I ever wanted to go and I literally swore that I would never become a blogger. So what changed?

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.

Symbaloo: An Interesting Way to Share Resources

The 21st Century Principal

Recently, a colleague suggested I try a web site called Symbaloo. Symbaloo is a visual interface that allows users to create what are called "Webmixes." A "Webmix" consists of content gathered from around the web. Each web site in a Webmix is represented with a tile and an icon, either selected by the user or derived from the web site. It is basically a tool to organize web sites and web services on one page. Users can share their Webmixes through social media or by URL.

The Write-N-Ator!


The Write-n-ator is a site from New Hampshire Public Television based on the PBS Series Word Girl! The site presents 20 different short clips from the TV show, followed by a writing challenge. What I love about the site is that it presents writing prompts in a fun context, and the prompts are all prime targets for S/L or literacy interventions.

Flipped Class Workshop Resources

The Electric Educator

This week I traveled to Wisconsin to help teachers at University School of Milwaukee flip their classrooms. In preparation for the event I built out a Google Site with tips, ideas, projects, and examples to help teachers get started in flipping their classrooms. Please feel free to browse the site and use the resources that I put together. Thanks for subscribing to my blog. I always appreciate feedback on my posts.