As many of you know, since 2014 I have been Teaching like a Pirate and in just three years I have expanded my collection with all the various books from the Burgess Consulting Company. However, the two I have been using a a lot over the last year have been: eXPlore like a Pirate and Play like a Pirate. The last few months I have been incorporating both into my STEAM Enrichment classes and my students can’t get enough. A couple of weeks ago I was in the LEGO Store and I came across their Brick Headz sets.
Continue reading “LEGO Brick Headz as a Biography”
It was April of 2014, I was just a month and a half from completing my second year at Christian Life Schools and something happened. I felt burnt out. I had barely been in education for almost four years and I remember sitting in my office. I was fixing a few forgotten gmail passwords and was told on twitter: “You have to do something else with your App Dice, they are getting boring.” I had no other major planned classroom lessons happening until close to May 1st and I had just sent off my clean up for iPads for classrooms and final eRate quotes to be reviewed and I looked at my blog and went: “What can I do?” “What is the point, if I’m not in the classroom.” “I’m just another tech guy with no classroom and nothing better to do.” “I’m not good enough to do anything innovative or new.” Then I had Barbara Gruener point me towards a guy named, Dave Burgess and his book, Teach like a Pirate.
Continue reading “How Teach like a Pirate changed my practice as an Educator”
Hello Everyone, Well, this weekend I was talking with some of my various coworkers and they talked about wishing they had access to all the Teach like a Pirate and Hack Learning books that are around. So, with some … Continue reading TLAP for my Teachers GoFundMe
Have you ever played kerplunk? It’s a great game where the object of the game is to skillfully remove the sticks from the tube while dropping the fewest marbles possible. The translucent tube stands upright on a base that contains four separate numbered trays. The winner has the fewest marbles fall. Tumbling Monkeys is very similar, but the monkeys have small tails that can hook on the various sticks and who is having the fewest monkeys to win can change very quickly. Both games teach strategy but they also can teach much, much more.
Continue reading “Tumbling Monkeys in the Classroom”
A couple of weeks ago, my Donors Chooses for getting a 3D Printer, LEGOs and Ozobots was funded and it didn’t take long for my students and myself to get down to using them in my STEAM class. While my students wanted to really rush into creativity as soon as they could, I did remind them of page 60 of Launch about “Design thinking may be slow, but it actually saves time in the long run.” One of the original ideas for the 3D printer was to create skins for our Ozobots. While my students love making skins using traditional paper and tape, there is something about coding a design and then seeing it brought to life that really gets my students’ innovation flowing. Here is a set of lessons and projects we have been doing the last couple of weeks and a few we have planned in the weeks ahead after winter winter break.
Continue reading “3D Printing and Coding”
Here is a video showing a successful running of the Kickbox Tickle App Coding Challenge. Based on the ST Math Kickbox challenge. In this video using the coding App Tickle. We coded a BB-8 Sphero, Sphero SPRK and Darkside Ollie in a Kickbox obstacle using fam dominos. The trick was to have BB-8 following the other Spheros as they get on of his way and he exits the Kickbox. Took about 4 tries to code correctly, but it was a lot of fun and challenging. It as Tyler found out in this video, it’s easy to get the obstacle robots … Continue reading The Kickbox Hour of Code Challenge Experience
Based on ST Math Kickbox activities, here is a great project/lesson you can do with your students using Spheros, Ozobots, Dash and Dot and even Bee-bots that promotes critical thinking, PBL and STEAM with gamification. Continue reading Kickbox Coding Challenge
The other day, I was looking through my PBL and I came across a way to teach students basic coding with LEGO and super hero action figures. My son, Tyler saw what I was looking at and wanted to build with his LEGO table set upstairs. When I told him how the game works he said they needed the super heroes fight the supervillains and the two of us created a fun game you can use with your students to teach coding.
Continue reading “Teaching Code with Superhero LEGO Game”
I know, you are probably reading the headline and saying: “Don’t you mean Christmas Wish List”? Kind of, but for the last few years, I have always seen great sales for items I would love to have for my students and classroom and eventually, they find themselves to my students (sadly not by Christmas). So, being the #STEAM teacher and trying to transition my students to STREAM (science, technology, reading, engineering, art and mathematics). I came up with a great wish list this year.
Continue reading “My Black Friday Tech Wish List”
Last week, I was doing my weekly PD with my fellow teachers and one of our coaches had us play, I have/You have card game. Those who are unfamiliar with it here is how it works: Distributing Cards: Distribute one card to each student, then distribute the extras to strong students in the beginning and to random students as the class becomes more familiar with the deck. Class Play: As you distribute the cards, encourage students to begin thinking about what the question for their card might be so that they are prepared to answer. When all … Continue reading I Have… Who Has? Coding Cards