Become a Spark Leadia

The last couple of weeks, I have been adding new and exciting books from the Dave Burgess Consulting Inc. library. These books have been just amazing (not that they haven’t been in the past). They have really been fueling my passion for education these last few weeks. So much I decided to start “Book Smashing” them. If you don’t know the term, similar to App Smashing, Book Smashing is when you combine one or more books lessons, ideas and more together to create an amazing lesson or project. Not really a new concept as I remember my two of my former teachers in grade and middle school doing something similar, but it has become a bit of a lost art in the last decade or so. So, to get things kicked off, I wanted to start off with one that I came up with the other night that I’m sure you will love that combines: HyperDocs, Digital Citizenship, Mapping and engagement into one.

I recently read the book Spark Learning by Dr. Ramsey Musallam and his book really grabbed me so much I could not put it down. One of the 3 Keys for Spark Learning is Curiosity and he isn’t talking about our favorite monkey with the Man with the Yellow Hat. He talked about how “Curiosity comes first” and to try and your best to spark authentic student questioning before delivering content. Something that has been driving at me this past year with my STEAM classes was teaching students more about digital citizenship. I was working with both Seesaw and Google Classroom constantly this school year and something happened with the older students. They weren’t really being very citizenship like at times. There were some downright mean comments going on with peer to peer feedback at times. I was able to start putting their comments on a spreadsheet and then shown in class about what was being a Good Digital Citizenship was and what Bad Citizenship was. In fact, many students replied they were just joking, but I turned around and asked: “If this was your instagram or Snapchat account would that fly.” I got dead silence when I asked that question. As Jennifer Casa-Todd said in Social LEADia “if we don’t provide opportunities in all schools for all students to become digital leaders, we’ll have students at an additional disadvantage.” So how do we teach great digital citizenship skills to our students and have them use the THINK strategy as a great way to engage them? The best way is to show your own digital citizenship.

  1. Ramsey showed a great way to use IFTTT with Google Drive, he talked about creating a Google Spreadsheet using various Applet Triggers. I created one using Instagram to create a spreadsheet of my images. Every time I post a picture to my Instagram, IFTTT will trigger and put a link to that image, what time I did the post and I can simply add in a column of how many views it got and why I posted the image (you can do the same for videos). You can’t do this for Instagram Stories or Live Views.

  2. Using Google Drawings, I created a Tree Map using a lesson from Unmapped Potential by Julie Hasson and Missy Lennard. This Tree Map is usually used for classifying. In this template the Tree Map is listed under: Images, Videos and Other. The main spreadsheet is hyperlinked to your Google Spreadsheet and students go to the spreadsheet and then click on the links provided in that spreadsheet. I do recommend caution though when doing this as the links not only show your images and video, but also your comments and likes. Make sure you don’t use anything inappropriate or have any rude comments. You can talk about them if you want too, but be aware and use THINK.
  3. The next step is to have it where students can make a copy in Google Drive or use Google Classroom to provide them with the Map. Students are to view the Instagram links and then type in on the Tree Map what these images, videos, ect are such as: Educational, DIY, Helpful, Fun, ect. Also, if your school network blocks social media, you can just upload the images and videos to your Google Drive and then create a HyperDoc from there. It can be more time consuming, but a great work around.
  4. After they have completed their Tree Maps, have students create their own Google Spreadsheet and create a Timeline on when the posts were made and organize them by category (Educational, DIY, Helpful, Fun) and graph the results in the spreadsheet.
  5. Finally have a discussion on their findings, they might find things like: “You share a lot of teaching on your Instagram and almost nothing on what you are eating.” or “You create more posts than videos and I love the videos more.” “You never say anything bad about anyone and no one seems to say anything bad about you.”
  6. Finally, after you have had this discussion, have students create their own Fun Google Social Media project. Have students create their own image or video using Google Drive or if you use Seesaw an image or video and use the caption on what is going on. Then post it on Seesaw or Google Classroom and see how their peers respond to it.

This is to teach the power of social media both good and bad and how you can become a responsible Digital Citizen. This is a great lesson you can try with your class and get them thinking about what they do or want to do on social media and how it can Spark curiosity in your own classroom.


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