Sat.Jan 04, 2014 - Fri.Jan 10, 2014

The People and Moments That Define Us

A Principal's Reflections

I knew early on in my education career that I wanted to be an administrator. The predominant reason for this was that I wanted to at least attempt to be a fraction of the leader that my father was.

Wolfram releases Problem Generator to create practice problems

Educational Technology Guy

Wolfram, creators of Wolfram|Alpha , have launched Wolfram Problem Generator. This tool allows students and teachers to create unlimited, random practice problems and answers in subjects such as elementary math, algebra, statistics and even college calculus.

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Showing How Awesome You Are-Building Your Brand

The Web20Classroom

Back when I started this blog in February of 2009 I was trying to create a space to share resources with my teachers in my district. Web 2.0 tools were gaining in popularity so I wanted to capitalize on that, hence the name. The same with my Twitter account.

Using iPads to Support Social Learning in Kindergarten

My Paperless Classroom

Students Using Puppet Pals in Groups Lesson Objective To help Kindergarten students better understand a complex play situation, and give them tools to effectively communicate in that situation.

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5 Costly Inventory Management Mistakes Schools Should Avoid

If your school is like most, inventory and/or asset management plays a critical role in daily operations.

#CEL13: Choice

Baker's B.Y.O.D.

During the 2013 Conference on English Leadership in the Transforming Decisions session lead by Gordon Hultberg , English teacher and department head at Intermountain Christian School in Utah , we discussed the concept of choice in our ELA classrooms.

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More Trending

Crowdsourcing Genius Hour

Cool Tools for 21st Century Learners

My first post of the new year was published on, Embrace Change in the New Year with Genius Hour. I am collecting ideas from experts and enthusiasts in my PLN about the idea of Genius Hour. Please explore this interactive graphic to learn more and consider contributing your ideas to the Padlet. Created with Padlet Visit wall. GeniusHour

Glad I Was Disappointed Today


Photo Used With Permission Under a Creative Commons License NOTE: I''m going to talk a bit about the difficulties I had participating in edcampHOME today. I want to make clear that this is not meant as a complaint about edcampHOME or its organizers.

Beyond The Hour of Code

My Paperless Classroom

Thank you Rae Fearing for hosting this great conversation on the next steps after hour of Code. The Hour of Code was really a tipping point for my campus, it allowed us to bring the community in and let our students share their tech experience with their families.

Screencasting with Screenmailer

Kathy Schrock

Screenmailer is a new screencasting/screen recording tool for Mavericks on the Mac. It is easy to use, quick to render, and can be used as an on-the-spot solution for teacher or student screencasts!

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Teachers’ Guide to Plagiarism

This article provides teachers with a step-by-step guide on how to handle plagiarism in the classroom: it examines the definition of the term "plagiarism" and its types with examples, describes common reasons students plagiarize, and provides tips for teachers to detect and prevent plagiarism among students.



Wordle has long been hailed as a great visual way to work with language. Text or a web address (URL) can be pasted into this tool and then a word "cloud" is displayed, with emphasis on more frequently used words.

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How Do You Stay Motivated?


Photo by rosipaw used under a Creative Commons license I am a K-12 educational technology specialist, but due to the nature of my job duties, I go through long stretches where I do not have direct interaction with classroom teachers or students.

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Practical examples of social media in elementary school

The Innovative Educator

Guest post by Computer Teacher & Tech Coordinator, Chris Casal | Cross posted at The Casal Operating System Editor''s note: Chris Casal is a member of the NYC DOE Social Media Advisory Team. His insights have helped inspire and guide teachers in the effective use of social media in the classroom. Here''s how he does it. I am often asked about how we use "social media" here at PS 10. It is a question that is both simple & easy to answer and one that is also complex and nuanced.

Publishing 3.0 - A new model for independent educational publishing

Nik Peachey

My New Years resolution this year was to start work on a series of ebooks for iPads, e-readers and other digital devices. This has been my ambition since I published my first book Web 2.0

Custom eLearning: What to Consider as an L&D Manager

A custom eLearning project is an exciting opportunity, but any L&D Manager will also tell you it can be challenging. Inno-versity shares 5 points to consider before kicking off your project. These concepts are critical to addressing the most common pain points which, IF addressed, will ensure success.

Social Learning in K with Puppet Pals

My Paperless Classroom

This is a video only post Social Learning in K with Puppet Pals This is the setup scenario movie for a kindergarten lesson using Puppet Pals to role play complex play situations. pedagogy

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3 New Year's resolutions educators should consider

Kairos EdTech

Winter break is a great time to pause and reflect on how things have been going during the school year. The beginning of the new year also is a fantastic opportunity to set some goals.

More About Using Voodoo Value-Added Measures to Determine Teacher Candidate Quality

The 21st Century Principal

'Two days ago, I posted about Teacher Match and Hanover Research, two companies that are now using value-added statistical modeling to predict the effectiveness of prospective teachers'' abilities to raise test scores. ( "Using Statistical Models to Predict Future Effectiveness of Teacher Candidates: A Snake Oil Approach" ) As I pointed out, there are some major flaws, especially flaws in the assumptions about teaching, in using this approach as even a part of a new teacher candidate selection process. Here''s some more thoughts on this heinous practice: 1. It elevates standardized testing even higher in the decision-making processes for schools. This is using imperfect assessments to make decisions about whether a new teacher can raise test scores. States haven''t done the validation studies to prove that the assumptions they make based on scores are valid. States develop tests on the cheap, or they purchase ready-made tests of questionable validity, and that were not designed for the purposes for which they are using them. Tests do not deserve this level of emphasis. This practice, by default, views raising test scores as the goal of good teaching. 2. It makes the hiring processes of schools and districts even more mysterious. In one district where Teacher Match is used, a source inside that district reported they have a major decrease in applicants because new candidates were being asked to submit to this mysterious process before being hired. I suspect this would be a big problem with any of these kinds of products. Besides, who wants to go into teaching to become the best test-score raiser in the business? These voodoo products will only make it harder to find teaching candidates not easier. It gives teachers the wrong message up front: your primary job is to raise test scores. 3. It is just another expensive drain on already short educational resources. One district contract with Teacher Match showed a district paying well over $30,000 per year for the service. In tight budgetary times when teachers are spending hundreds of dollars on their own school supplies, it amazes me that, morally, a district could justify spending this kind of money on a statistical gimmick. Districts are throwing more and more money into these statistical quackery schemes, when there are so many other pressing needs. 4. School districts, as I have witnessed many, many times in my 24 years as an educator, are purchasing products like Teacher Match, based entirely on the promises and marketing of the companies. Instead of accepting their word that their product will do what they say it will, they need to be forced to produce independent, peer-reviewed research. If they can''t produce those studies, tell them to come back when they can. And, because I am not a firm believer that high test scores equals good teaching, they need to use measures other than test scores to prove their product is effective. 5. The fact that companies like Teacher Match and Hanover Research even exist in the education industry now is due to the Obama administrations'' insistence of elevating test scores importance in everything a school does. This legacy will leave public education in worse shape than George Bush''s No Child Left Behind. Arne Duncan and his Department of Education believe that data is data and any old data will do as long as it is "objective." This shows immediately that he and his cohorts do not have a clue about education. When you have non-educators like Duncan and half his Department of Education, you get these kind of detrimental approaches to education. 6. A major assumption behind Teacher Match and other statistical quackery products like it, is that schools can be operated like businesses, where their business is churning out high test scores. This assumption about public education is wrong. Because of current federal policy, public schools are being viewed even more like a business whose product is high test scores. That might be acceptable if your goal as an education system is to produce "high-quality test takers." What the education policy of President Obama and Arne Duncan is doing is destroying the culture of public education, test score by test score. Teacher Match''s Educator''s Professional Inventory and Hanover Research''s Paragon K12 are the latest in value-added voodoo products to be peddled to school districts. They will only serve to elevate the importance of test scores even higher than they already are. Districts even thinking about purchasing this snake oil should be ashamed of wasting limited education money on such products. There comes a time when you have to realize statistics aren''t going to tell you everything what really need to know. Not everything can be reduced to numbers subject to statistical analysis. My fear is that some administrators who see test scores as the sole goal of their school are going to use this data to as the only basis of hiring someone. Can you imagine a profession where whether you can produce high test scores determines your entry, and whether you can keep producing those high test scores determine whether you can stay? That folks, is a factory model of educational delivery if I have ever heard of one! value added value added measures value added teacher hiring value added teacher ratings'

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Breaking down the silos

Learning with 'e's

I have written previously about the artificial divide between school subjects. Yes, there are practical reasons for teaching art separately to science, or maths in a different room to music.

Key Elements for Successful eLearning Projects

Discover how this rapid development process creates engaging, custom learning solutions on a timeline that works for you, why a strong learning culture is important, and how to showcase your Return on Learning (ROL) using data to tell the story.

One Device to Rule Them All

Kyle Pace

We see posts all the time that tote one device’s superiority over another. Things like, “Why the _ is the clear winner in K-12 education” or “The __ is now in percent of all classrooms in America” You know what I’m talking about.


How blogging can give students a voice

The Innovative Educator

Guest post by Connor Wood Author’s note: Lisa Nielsen offered me the chance to do this guest post after I requested an interview from her for my blog Trismegistus Nab-tu-we. My blog is devoted to writing, politics, and philosophy of education. She was impressed with my blog and asked me if I would share information about my work. This post provides a student’s story about how I’ve used a blog and my personal learning network to share my ideas and give students a voice.

The Learning Revolution - New Events + Partners - Great Learning 2.0 Videos - Social Network Conversations

The Learning Revolution Has Begun

The Learning Revolution Weekly Update January 7th A well-educated mind will always have more questions than answers. Helen Keller Welcome to the Learning Revolution. The technologies of the Internet and the Web are reshaping where, when, and from whom we learn.


Altered perceptions

Learning with 'e's

When my son was still quite young, he was diagnosed with semantic pragmatic disorder , on the autistic spectrum. It took many years before he was able to express himself effectively, and he would become extremely agitated when he couldn''t make himself understood.

The Ultimate 12 Step Guide For Choosing The Perfect Learning Management System

Picking the wrong LMS can cost you. Don’t settle for a disconnected, hard-to-use, expensive system that doesn’t meet your needs. Follow these 12 steps crafted by Lambda Solutions' LMS experts, and find your perfect eLearning solution!

Giving Students a Voice in App Selection

Education with Technology

Traditionally, teachers research apps for their class. They assign apps to students. The teachers assign a specific app or give students a choice of several pre-selected apps. As a Modern Language teacher, I suggested apps to my students in the early part of the year. However, in January, I let my students select which apps they wanted to use based on their own app searching and a minimal checklist.

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Our First #edchatHI Twitter Chat was a success, with a little help from G+ Hangouts

mauilibrarian2 in Olinda

Our inaugural #edchatHI Twitter chat on January 6 was a success! We wanted to be sure everything went smoothly, so we decided to do a private Google+ hangout as we moderated. We highly recommend doing this. It makes moderating easy and fun. Our behind-the-scenes team?

The hottest posts everyone's reading

The Innovative Educator

Here’s the roundup of what''s been popular on The Innovative Educator blog. Below you’ll see the top posts along with the number of page views. I hope there''s something that looks of interest to you. If it does, check it out. If you’re inspired use one of those icons below the post to share it with others and/or leave a comment. Entry Pageviews NYC blazes trails to prepare students for success. Dec 29, 2013, 1939 Does Twitter have a minimum age requirement?

Education is the Best Medicine

Comfortably 2.0

I created the Smore that you see below awhile back in order to better educate the parents of our K-12 students. We have been 1:1 with iPads at the school I teach at for a year and I am constantly trying to stay ahead of our students when it comes to the social media apps that they are using. I am a firm believer that education is the best medicine when it comes to prevention in regards to

Leveraging Learner Variability to Elevate Equity in EdTech

Speaker: Vic Vuchic, Chief Innovation Officer & Executive Director, Learner Variability Project

In this webinar, Vic Vuchic, Chief Innovation Officer of Digital Promise, will share his insights into the modern boom in neuroscience and learning sciences research. You'll discover how much more we know now about how students learn - and how we can use that knowledge to create EdTech-enabled classrooms that can meet the diverse needs of all students.