Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Gaming Digital Citizenship

What if....??

Many educators using edtech are familiar with Mike Ribble's Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship.  What if we related the important skills of digital citizenship to gaming?

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Have students make infographics with Easelly

Infographics are now on many websites.  We also see them shared in social spaces like Twitter and Facebook.  They are eye-catching graphics that allow us to quickly learn some interesting information, as well as exploring more complex topics from different points of view with the aid of sophisticated graphic art.  New tools abound that make it easier than ever for us to create and share our own infographics as well, and one I've been using with students lately is Easelly.

Inquiring Minds: Tackling the process of inquiry in the classroom

In a story last year about Tony Wagner, author of The Global Achievement Gap, they quote him as saying, "The culture of schooling as we know it is radically at odds with the culture of learning that produces innovators." We can tell you the kinds of environments where we know kids are excited, enthusiastic, and open to inquiry and discovery - it happens naturally for young children almost anytime they are given a little freedom to explore, experiment, and create.  However, the structures we set up in school, many ingrained in us from preservice texts, and even before (anticipatory set anyone?), often have schools doing things that take away those very opportunities. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Do you have TPACK? What does this mean for helping teachers integrate technology?

What is it? 
TPACK is an acronym that stands for "Technological, pedagogical, content knowledge" (this site explains it more in-depth). You can see the need for the acronym!  Sometimes this is also referred to as TPCK. The idea behind TPACK is that if teachers have it, they are more intuitive, creative, innovative, and successful in their efforts to integrate technology into their classrooms in ways that yield not just meaningful, but high impact results on student learning.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Weebly and the beginnings of project based learning

Weebly is an excellent web page tool that is easy to set up, edit, and publish, and has a beautiful interface with a wide array of nicely designed templates.

Recently, I've had my middle school tech students, who are fairly experienced with blogs, set up Weebly accounts and begin some fun projects just to learn the tool.  I allowed them to select whatever interested them, then categorize that for the purpose of building pages.  They then had to add and cite images, videos, and text while building these pages.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Strive for invisibility

This idea may seem counter to many ideas we have about teaching, but when it comes to edtech and technology integration into classrooms, it's when the technology becomes transparent that you know you have achieved true integration.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The power of MOOC

I have recently found myself in a MOOC. A #diffimooc to be specific. For those not in the know about this, a MOOC is a massive open online course.  It's a way for a university to offer a course, incorporate many useful and relevant communication and collaboration tools, and promote the idea of openness and sharing of information and ideas - the essential heart of web 2.0.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Tell stories

“No, no! The adventures first, explanations take such a dreadful time.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland; Through the Looking-Glass 

I have been giving a lot of thought lately to the importance of stories in our lives. In this digital age of information overload, the age-old tradition of storytelling is more important than ever. We have swung on a pendulum from the days before the written word, to the days before much of the population was literate, to the information age, but in each phase, storytelling has played a vital role.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

An EdTech Professional Development Pyramid

What is the most effective way to encourage/deliver/integrate edtech professional development? The layout of this infographic should come as no surprise to anyone. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

UNfortunately, gig sticks are still necessary. Fortunately, they can help transform your classroom!

Gig stick: aka, mini-USB drive, thumb drive, geek stick, flash drive, memory stick, jump drive, pen drive, I'm sure there are many more synonyms out there for this ubiquitous little device, which is not platform dependent.

First, let me say, I can't think of anything more uninspiring to be doing right now than writing a post about gig sticks.