As the first semester draws closer to an end (6 weeks for me). Teachers reach that moment where they start to reflect on their classroom teaching or the 90 Day reflection. As many of you know, I returned to the classroom this year after serving as an administrator and enrichment teacher the last few years. I went from reaching a large range of students in a small capacity to teaching high school students in six different sections on a Block Schedule. To say the least, it was not the easiest transition, especially taking the position just a little over two weeks before the new school year started. I was fortunate to have a portfolio from previous school years about the material that needed to be cover. However, after the first month, I felt that I wasn’t teaching the classroom the way I wanted to teach it. Don’t get me wrong, my new students enjoyed the fact that I wouldn’t lecture constantly, gave extra time to work on assignments instead of having extra homework. They also loved my XP Power ups (they still do). Yet something was still missing. Continue reading “Teaching your Way”
Been awhile since I did a simple post on some cool exciting tools you can try in your classroom. I have two IOS and one great universal tools you can use with your students right now.
The last few days I have been working on a set of images using Adobe Draw on my iPad. Taking a note from Tony Vincent‘s making your own Clipart and from Quinn Rollins Play like a Pirate I decided to combine them along with Julie Smith’s Master the Media and some of Michael Matera’s eXPlore like a Pirate. (Yes, I made these first for a reason).
Last week, I was wrapping up first quarter on STEAM with my kindergarten class and something that was a big hit was having a compliment read to them or them reading one themselves. I had used one of Tony Vincent‘s random HTML compliment QR Codes since we were learning about how to use QR Codes in the classroom and I also used my own random compliment QR Code. Some of the students just wanted to keep scanning or hitting the reload button to get a new compliment. Taking a page from Master the Media by Julie Smith. Julie pointed out in Chapter 8 about teaching a person how to navigate the internet or use proper tools associated with the internet will help them understand more.
Happy Monday everyone! Its the final week of school for me and while many are in the same boat and others are already ahead of the curb. It won’t be long before we are sitting down again trying to work new ideas into our lessons. Now, many of us know, that as teachers or educators when we find something that works, we usually keep using it, but we also know that after a while, a lesson or project might start to become outdated, but that’s not true. Several years ago, when I was working just after my undergraduate days from college. I worked in kitchens and of course just like in every kitchen, you had to clean up at the end of the day or when the main meals were complete. There was an old term called: “Finding Pennies”. This was based on an old kitchen cleaning trick to see who was doing well at their job. Basically, a crew leader or manager would take a handful of pennies and throw them in various areas where sweeping should be performed daily. If the manager came back the next day and found the pennies still where they were tossed, then the employee did not do a good job sweeping.
A few years ago, I did this same idea with a set of lessons that seemed to be a bit outdated with classrooms and started using it for a daily practice.
The past week, I have been sharing mini videos on my Instagram account on using various devices for coding and STEAM in your classroom. I use my Instagram account for both educational and personal use. I usually divide my educational postings using the hashtag: #DiceUPtheClassroom. I love using Instagram for many of my quick posts as I can link it both with my other social accounts and using IFTTT to post on my other channels as full images and not just a link to my accounts In the last couple months thanks to Tony Vincent and Michael Buist I have been trying to fine tune my postings on Instagram with animated images on the tech I love to use in the classroom or types you should try out with your students and staff. Many have asked me how I did this?
A while ago, I posted about using social media in the classroom. Mostly by using the various features of Instagram along with sister Apps. Well, as many of you know, Instagram and its sister Apps had overhauls on both designs and features. I’m going over a few ways you can use Instagram in your classroom and using the various sister Apps both with and outside of Instagram.
Welcome to the month of March, the month where Spring begins, the weather starts to take an upswing and my birthday (March 1st). With all the lessons and projects I have been doing lately, especially Build like a Pirate. I thought I would turn things down a bit and look at a great debate going on in classrooms right now. What is the difference between an Infopic and a Memes? An infopic is a photo with text layered on top that is designed to communicate a message. The message might be a summary, quote, definition, notes, data, weblink, hashtag, or other information. A meme, a humorous image, video, piece of text, etc. that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users, but has an underlining message in it that you can relate to.
As we wrap up, I is for Innovation, I thought I would leave things with some innovative tools you can get for your classroom and some ways you can use them. Perler Beads: We know this would be my first pick. I have really gotten into using Perler Beads with my teachers and students as our way of having our own 3D Printer. We currently do not have the funds to get the emerging technology in schools. While my nieces and peers have access to one at their schools. I stumbled on using Perler Beads due to health advice from … Continue reading Innovative Tools in the Classroom
In the last few postings, I’ve highlighted quite a few people from Dave Burgess to Tony Vincent to my history of teachers who made an impact on how I teach. So, the question begins on how I found these resources? In the classic days of teaching and I’m talking about when my mother-in-law taught during the late 60s and early 70s the only resources were each other. The classic “steal a lesson” idea, of course today we call it mentoring or coaching but during a good part of education for most of the 20th century resources for teachers and educators came from each other something we still do in the 21st century however the platform has significantly changed. In the late 90s just before I attended college a classmate of mine who was going into teaching had to drive almost an hour to a teacher store, which as we all know is a place for teachers and students to find items or to find a way to generate ideas for lessons and projects in the classrooms. My own mother-in-law opened her own teachers’ store, The Teacher’s Apple in the early 90s and it ran for over a decade before the rise of online shopping lead to its closing in the early 2000s. Its very ironic how the shift from in person shopping transferred to online shopping for many educators not just for my mother-in-law’s store but for so many others to the point the Teacher’s Store became almost a complete online ecosystem that now stands today. Continue reading “Building your PLN”