December, 2015

Maker Education Card Game

User Generated Education

I like and have always used games in my classrooms. One of my current educational interests is maker education. As such, I have begun creating games for maker education – see my first one, a board game, at Reflecting on the Making Process. The game I am presenting here is a card game that ends with the makers making something based on selected cards. Each maker picks a card from each of the three categories: The Thing or Process. The Product. The Population.

How Hashtags Can Empower You in 2016

Teacher Reboot Camp

“The hashtag, that ubiquitous pound sign followed by a keyword, are part of the language of social media.”- ”- Neil Patel, Forbes. In August 2007, Chris Messina introduced hashtags (#) into Twitter’s code , which meant anyone using the platform could add a # sign front of any word(s) without spaces to make it a clickable link leading to a page where all tweets with this hashtag were aggregated.


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Improving Instruction in a Digital World

A Principal's Reflections

The Rigor and Relevance Framework —an action ­oriented continuum that describes putting knowledge to use—gives teachers and administrators a way to develop both instruction and assessment while providing students with a way a way to project learning goals. This framework, based on traditional elements of education yet encouraging movement from acquisition of knowledge to application of knowledge, charts learning along the two dimensions of higher standards and student achievement.

9 digital tools for your classroom toolbelt

Ditch That Textbook

The digital tool doesn’t make the class, but it does help to have some good ones handy. Sometimes, just finding a new digital tool can open up new opportunities for you and your students. I collect new tools from interactions on Twitter, from reading blog posts and from face-to-face interactions with other educators. When I [.]. Ed Tech creative teaching digital tools edtech educational technology formative assessment storytelling

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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.

How Metacognition Makes Students Better Learners

Brilliant or Insane

Brilliant or Insane. In her new book, Hacking Assessment: 10 Ways to Go Gradeless in a Traditional Grades School, Starr Sackstein suggests an array of ways to give students a voice in the assessment process, while eliminating traditional grades. One way to “hack” assessment, according to Starr, is to teach students to reflect on their own learning. See exactly […]. The post How Metacognition Makes Students Better Learners appeared first on Brilliant or Insane.

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Courage to Be an Outlier Educator

User Generated Education

Today, during a podcast interview, I was asked what it takes to be an educational thought leader. My responses was, “courage.” ” In this test driven, accountability-laden era of education, it takes courage to be an educator driven by authentic, constructivist , and student-centered values and practices. Courage: Courage is the choice and willingness to confront agony, pain, danger, uncertainty, or intimidation.

Need Help Beginning a Blog?

Catlin Tucker

Blogging has become an important part of my teaching practice. Prior to blogging, I frequently neglected the reflection phase of learning. Now, blogging creates a space for me to reflect on what I am doing, what is working, and how I can continue to improve. Writing my blog has also become a vehicle to share my work with other educators and build an invaluable personal learning network. I know many teachers are curious about blogging.

And the top e-learning trends for 2016 are.


It’s December, it’s almost the end of the year and it's time to talk about the 2016 e-learning trends. We always love to greet the new year with a bang, both literally and figuratively. So, to get you straight to the point - I’m here to point out, what I deem, will be the ed tech trends for the next year. Just to get things going, here’s a recap of 2015. First, mobile learning. Sure, there were lots of devices released in 2014 and the years before, but 2015 was the mobile age.

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20 ways to use Formative for awesome assessment

Ditch That Textbook

When I return graded homework to students, I sort of cringe on the inside. I’m never sure where all that hard work and meaningful feedback is going to end up. Sometimes it’s in the trash (or recycle bin). Sometimes it’s on the floor of the hallway. The worst for me: half-torn and sticking out of the [.]. Uncategorized assessment edtech educational technology feedback formative goformative

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).

Crowdfunding Campaigns: Lessons Learned from an Ed-Tech Startup

Ed Tech from the Ground Up

Apply this advice from the front lines of a successful crowdfunding campaign to your new venture. Click the headline to read the full post. Questions? Email Lessons Learned ProfessorWord Startup Life lessonslearned

Dear Parents: Should We Stop Mocking the Common Core?

Brilliant or Insane

Brilliant or Insane. Dear Parents, I get it. You’re frustrated. You want to help your child with his or her school work. It’s supposed to make sense. After all, if an adult can’t grasp it, how is an 8-year-old supposed to? So when it doesn’t make sense and you can’t help, something must clearly be wrong. And since the only […]. The post Dear Parents: Should We Stop Mocking the Common Core? appeared first on Brilliant or Insane. Issues Opinion You Vote: B or I Common Core math

A Model of Good Teaching?

User Generated Education

One of my guilty pleasures is watching MasterChef Junior, a cooking competition for 8 to 12 year olds, and as an educator, I have been analyzing it as a model for good teaching. My observations include: The challenges are hands-on and naturally engaging for these kids. They are based on the kids’ passion for and interest in cooking. The kids don’t need to be graded about their performances. Consequences are natural. Food gets burned. The kids sometimes get burned.

10 Bits of Wisdom I Learned From a Computer

Ask a Tech Teacher

Life is hard, but help is all around us. The trick is to take your learning where you find it. In my case, as a technology teacher, it‘s from computers. A while ago I posted four lessons I learned from computers : Know when your RAM is full. You Can‘t Go Faster Than Your Processor Speed. Take Shortcuts When You Can. Be Patient When You‘re Hourglassing. I got a flood of advice from readers about the geeky lessons they got from computers. See which you relate to: #5: Go offline for a while.

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.

How to deal with students resistant to e-learning


We are in the realm of 21st century learning, where most students are digital natives and expect their teachers to be the same and deliver all class content online, through an interactive e-learning platform. It’s always been a challenge for teachers, who are digital immigrants, to blend with these students because they have more know-how in the new advances of technology and perhaps, maximizing these technology advances in the classroom. Students are supposed to be the change, right?

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20 ways to ditch those worksheets

Ditch That Textbook

In the first few years of my teaching career, I relied on worksheets a lot. In fact, when I switched professions to become a teacher, creating my own worksheets kind of excited me. After those first few years and lots of lessons with worksheets, workbooks and end-of-chapter questions, I came to a scary realization. The [.]. Ed Tech edtech educational technology formative assessment gafe Google Apps homework worksheets

The 30 Goals Challenge for Educators! Cycle 7: Make it Meaningful

Teacher Reboot Camp

Help us inspire teachers worldwide for 2016 by suggesting one of the 30 Goals for Cycle 7 ! We have a grand mission to transform the world and that is overwhelming. We need the support of a community of compassionate and empathetic educators to help drive us. The 30 Goals Challenge began in 2010 to meet this need. We are a community of teachers across the globe accomplishing 1 to 30 goals to improve our instructional practices and keep our learners motivated.

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Find the Right YouTube Video for Your Lesson in Minutes

Ed Tech from the Ground Up

A new way to weed through YouTube videos for the ones that illustrate lessons best. Click the headline to read the full post. Questions? Email Research & Insights blendedclassroom differentiationtools edtech flippedclassroom formativeassessments interactivelearning realtimemonitoring screencasting teacherpreneur video videoscreencasting

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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.

Best 2015 Videos: STEM, STEAM, and Maker Education Theme

User Generated Education

One of my end of year rituals is finding and posting the years’ best videos. Given my current interest in maker education , I decided to locate and post 2015 videos related to maker education, STEM, and STEAM. Maker Education: Reaching All Learners. At Albemarle County Public Schools, maker education fosters student autonomy, ignites student interest, and empowers students to embrace their own learning. What Is a Maker? We are all makers; it’s in our DNA.

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5 Great Holiday Websites

Ask a Tech Teacher

Here are five great holiday websites that will put the seasonal spirit into your teaching. They are education-infused, lively, and appeal to varied learning styles. If you’re a tech teacher, you’ll want to use all of them. If you’re a classroom teacher, click through and find the ones right for your age group: 12 Days of Christmas. Gift Hunt. NORAD Santa. Penguin Show. Reindeer Orchestra. 12 Days of Christmas. Middle School and High School. Overview.

Learning management systems 101


Today we’re going back to the beginning to discuss one of the basics tools in e-learning which is the learning management system, LMS, learning platform or whatever you like to call it. Most schools deploy learning platforms to do the heavy lifting of their e-learning. And while there are students and teachers who already know how LMSs works, there are still a handful of people new to the digital world that need some time getting used to using such a platform. What is an LMS?

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10 things you might not know about Google Classroom

Ditch That Textbook

Google Classroom has become a hot topic among educators because of its simplicity, speed and efficiency in working with Google Apps in the classroom. As easy as many features are to use, some aren’t as intuitive … and some are just hard to find. I regularly stumble upon a feature in Classroom that makes me [.]. Ed Tech edtech educational technology gafe google apps for education google classroom shake up learning

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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!

Rethinking Professional Learning: The Role of Technology

Battelle for Kids

Volume 2, Issue 14, Number 3. Driving Question: How Can Schools Rethink Professional Learning to Improve School Success? Twenty-four years ago, I stepped through the doors of my first fourth grade classroom. I was a young, dedicated, new teacher ready, I thought, for the opportunities and challenges of my new classroom and hoping to bring some of my experiences and interests to my students.

Smartphone Photography Tips and Apps

The CoolCatTeacher

Every Classroom Matters episode 197 From the Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis Follow @coolcatteacher on Twitter. Smartphones are everywhere. Our students have them. We have them. Teachers are starting to use smartphones for photography, video and art. Meri Walker, the iPhone Art Girl, gives us the essential smartphone photography tips and smartphone photography apps that we need. Mobile artist communities are growing.

Coding and Bots

User Generated Education

I have been asked to return to teach summer enrichment classes on maker education for elementary-aged learners at a local school during the summer of 2016. One of the new classes I am designing is called Coding and Bots. The description is: Learn how to code first by playing games and then by coding some bots including Sphero, OZOBOT, and Dash and Dot. All ages are welcome but the child should have basic symbol recognition/reading skills.

Get Ready for the New Year!

Ask a Tech Teacher

Next week, I’ll share three holiday activities that will get your computers, technology, and social media ready for the new year. Here’s what you’ll get: Is Your Online Presence Up to Date? Back up and Image your computer. 15 Ways to Speed Up Your Computer. Join me! You’ll come away feeling ready, re-energized, and geeky. Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years.

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.

Web Filtering in K-12 Schools: The Past, Present, and Future


By Tom Walker. A Brief History of Web Filtering in K-12 Schools. When I started my career in K-12 IT, web content filtering in schools was a fairly new creature. The Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) was still in its early stages and various approaches to content filtering began to emerge. A handful of companies began to surface as the leaders in providing appliance web filtering solutions to deploy in the K-12 infrastructure.

Myth: Online Teachers Have No Effect on Students


Contributor: Kelli Hicks Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - 11:45am I have heard a lot of people say that they don’t think that online schooling works well because there isn’t in-person interaction between a student and their teacher. This belief is a myth. When both teachers and students participate the same way they would in a face-to-face setting, amazing things happen in the online world—just as often as they do in the traditional classroom

Salting the Oats: How Effective Coaches Ready PBL Teachers

Battelle for Kids

Volume 2, Issue 14, Number 8. Driving Question: How Do Coaches Most Help Teachers Transform Their 21st Century Instruction Into Classroom Action? Have you ever watched young children playing "school"? Even pre-school children portray the classroom as a place where the teacher is in control, often very autocratically, and the students are expected to be passive absorbers of information, following their teacher's instructions. Not much changes as the children pass to adolescence.