Professional Learning for Busy Educators
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10 Ways Augmented Reality Could Change Learning Experience

10 Ways Augmented Reality Could Change Learning Experience | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
By  Ken Myers, first appeared on GettingSmart.com

"The technology behind Augmented Reality is taking a real-world view and enhancing it with computer-generated imagery. Whether this is done by using a computer monitor and camera or fitted goggles to imprint imagery in the lenses, augmenting in this manner has great possibilities for a variety of tasks."
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Professional Learning for Busy Educators
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5 Questions That Promote Student Success in High-Poverty Schools

5 Questions That Promote Student Success in High-Poverty Schools | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Leaders in high-performing, high-poverty (HP/HP) schools know that success requires more than just high-quality teaching and learning. The entire school, as a system, should work together to develop a common instructional framework that provides a vision of what success looks like. When a ship loses its compass, getting to port becomes a game of chance. It's no different for a school. When a school, particularly one characterized by high poverty and low performance, lacks an instructional plan or framework, progress will be anything but systematic, and more than likely patterns of low performance will continue.

Through the collaborative efforts of the leaders and staff, HP/HP schools focus on three kinds of learning: student, professional, and system. These learning agendas influence each other, and leaders in HP/HP schools make the most of this connection to facilitate sustainable improvements in teaching and learning. Professional learning is the adult learning that takes place within a school, while system learning conveys how the school as a whole learns to be more effective. In other words, as people within the school learn, the system learns.
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Victor Ventura's curator insight, August 26, 8:30 AM
"Focus on three kinds of learning, student, professional, and system." Read on for the details.
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Free Technology for Teachers: 3 Tools for Creating Comics on iPads

Free Technology for Teachers: 3 Tools for Creating Comics on iPads | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
This morning I received an email from a reader who was looking for suggestions for tools that her students can use to create comics on their iPads. I recommended some paid and free apps to her. The free tools that I recommend are featured below.
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4 Things Worse Than Not Learning To Read In Kindergarten

4 Things Worse Than Not Learning To Read In Kindergarten | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
If your child is in kindergarten or first grade and hasn’t yet learned to read, don’t panic. Talk with his or her doctor about any concerns you have, but recognize that he or she is probably developing normally. If your child’s school is pushing academics in kindergarten in place of play-based learning, talk with the teacher. Chances are, she’s frustrated and under enormous pressure to get her students ready to “perform.” If you’re stuck with a kindergarten curriculum that seems unrealistic to you and doesn’t fit your child (and assuming that changing schools is not an option), let your child know that you’re not worried about reading in kindergarten (or even early in first grade). Talk about people who learned to read later (like Sam!) and are doing just fine. Then do things that promote real learning, like reading books he or she enjoys, playing games, teaching useful skills and getting outside as often as possible to have fun, be active and learn together.
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11 tips that can help you learn faster - and actually remember it

11 tips that can help you learn faster - and actually remember it | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Kids can and should practice the skill of learning if they want a fighting chance at fulfilling all those lofty goals their parents set for them. But some people keep studying - and thinking - the same way all their lives without improving their methods. 

Thankfully, cognitive science has taken a look at how people actually learn, and the results are surprising and super helpful.
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“Get Out From Behind That Computer!” Why the Brain Benefits When Students Talk and Move Around (EdSurge News)

“Get Out From Behind That Computer!” Why the Brain Benefits When Students Talk and Move Around (EdSurge News) | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
When you can get students talking and teaching each other, adding movement or gestures into the process, the students learn and retain more. Whether you call this process “Brain-Based Learning” or “Whole-Brain Learning,” the concept is the same. The goal of brain-based learning is to “engage your learners and do it with strategies that are based on real science” (Jensen). Their learning increases because they are engaging more parts of their brain during the teaching process.
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The Power of the Positive Phone Call Home

The Power of the Positive Phone Call Home | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
When I first started teaching and was overwhelmed by the demands and complexity of the job, my survival strategy was simply to take all the advice that came my way and implement it. So when my wise mentor suggested that after the first day of school I call all of my second grader's parents, I did so.

In spite of my exhaustion, I called each family and introduced myself. I asked a few questions about their child. I said that their kid had had a good first day. I said I looked forward to working together.

Throughout that year, and the years that followed, I continued this practice -- I had an intuitive feeling that it was key: The positive phone call home. After the first days, as soon as I'd identified the kids who might be challenging, I made it a goal to call home with positive news every week. I'd share this goal with my students, greeting them at the door with something like: "I'm so excited to see you this morning, Oscar! I am going to be watching you really closely today to find some good news to share with your mom this evening. I can't wait to call her and tell her what a good day you had!"
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Victor Ventura's curator insight, August 30, 8:32 PM
The practice of making positive phone calls will have a profound effect on the relations with the parents and the students themselves. Make sure you call the parents of the challenging students with genuine praise. I recommend you call these parents first. Do this during the first week of classes and then as much as you can during the school year( at least monthly).
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Setting Classroom Expectations | Edudemic

Setting Classroom Expectations | Edudemic | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Put 20 to 30 children in a room for six hours a day, and things will occasionally get a little rowdy. But if a classroom is consistently out of control, that will have a negative impact on student learning outcomes and the stress level of the teacher.

There is a way for teachers to take control up front: by setting clear classroom expectations. According to ASCD, setting clearly defined parameters for classroom behaviors accounts for 25% of the factors that affect classroom discipline. Defining and communicating classroom expectations will help students develop mature social skills, learn more, and will create an overall classroom atmosphere that’s welcoming and safe for everyone.
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Victor Ventura's curator insight, August 30, 8:36 PM
First few days of school. Teach, rehearse, and review as needed.
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The Problem with Giving Young Children Homework

The Problem with Giving Young Children Homework | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

Some elementary schools are assigning homework to kids straight down to kindergarten now. It may be they’re doing this to demonstrate to funding agencies how serious they are about keeping test scores up, but there’s no evidence it makes any real sense. While the value of homework for high-school kids is supported by the data, the same is not true for elementary students. And parents of young students are learning all too well the kind of stresses it creates.

One benefit elementary-school homework advocates cite is that homework helps build a child’s sense of responsibility. However, studies show that since a parent has to constantly remind young students to do their homework, this doesn’t actually happen. "

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Poof! Paper Handouts are Digital - Teacher Tech

Poof! Paper Handouts are Digital - Teacher Tech | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
When given a paper handout make it a digital resource using Google Keep. Grab the image text and share to a Google Doc. Paper to digital

Via WebTeachers
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Assessment in Making - @Edutopia

Assessment in Making - @Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Maker education is being increasingly integrated into classrooms of all grade levels. It's an approach that draws upon philosophies and pedagogies of the past (constructivism, constructionism, inquiry, hands-on, and project-based learning) and integrates methods from the present (design thinking, effectuation). It reimagines a progressive approach to learning through modern affordances. It democratizes the tools of creativity and empowers the learner. It develops a maker mindset that that has been described as "playful, asset- and growth-minded, failure positive, and collaborative" (Martin, 2015).

Traditional direct instruction focuses on content knowledge, while maker-centered learning orients around the learner's context. It's a framework for learning that can be applied to any content. It allows the learner to actualize his or her own ideas. In any subject area, with any materials or equipment, maker education is a tool or vehicle for learning that focuses on the how: the process, the social-emotional skills, and the application of problem solving, collaborating, and persisting. Yes, there is absolutely content, but maker ed creates a meaningful context for students to engage with content on their own terms.

Anyone who works with young makers sees this level of engagement, collaboration, and creativity. Indeed, there has been an explosion in the number of makerspaces in schools. But as with any new education model -- particularly one with roots outside of education -- there are serious questions that arise:
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Where Preschool Doesn't Cost a Dime

Where Preschool Doesn't Cost a Dime | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
BRISTOL, England—Any child in England who has turned 3 by Sept. 1 is guaranteed 15 hours a week of free childcare or preschool for 38 weeks a year, or 570 hours total, paid for by the national government.

“We don’t think of it as socialism at all,” said the Oxford University professor Edward Melhuish, who studies child development and was instrumental in conducting the research that largely led to England’s current policies. “We think of it as common sense.”
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3 Strategies to Improve Student Writing Instantly

3 Strategies to Improve Student Writing Instantly | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
"But Miss Parrish, I can't think of anything to write!"

Haven't we all heard similar lines in our classrooms? We see hesitant writers sit with a pencil in their hands and a paper on their desks, almost as if they have been handicapped by the task we asked them to do.

How is it that some students have so much to say when talking out loud, but when a pencil is put into their hand they suddenly hesitate, struggle and have nothing to say? How can you help those hesitant writers eliminate the "handicap" or barrier that suddenly appears when asked to write?

The answer is to simply have them produce "writing" without technically "writing" at all. That's right, the way to get hesitant writers to produce as much "writing" as they do "talking" is to have them do exactly that -- talk.
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7 Important Creative Thinking Skills

7 Important Creative Thinking Skills | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
We were on a call with an extended creative team generating ideas for client videos. During breaks, I found myself jotting down examples of important creative thinking skills the team was exhibiting.

7 Important Creative Thinking Skills

Infographic by and courtesy of Diane Bleck – DoodleInstitute.com
These seven creative thinking skills demonstrated during the call are ones which benefit both those who display them and those working with them too:
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Free Technology for Teachers: Timers, Word Clouds, and Kahoot

Free Technology for Teachers: Timers, Word Clouds, and Kahoot | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
At the end of every month I like to take a look at the search terms visitors frequently use on Free Technology for Teachers. It gives me a sense of what people are interested in learning about. That information helps me brainstorm new blog posts for the next month (by the way, I have a running list that I keep in a notebook). The three most commonly searched terms in August were "timers," "word cloud," and "Kahoot." Here's some information about all three.
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Free Technology for Teachers: Great Tools for Creating Screencasts - A PDF Handout

Free Technology for Teachers: Great Tools for Creating Screencasts - A PDF Handout | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Over the last few weeks I have shared my favorite tools for creating screencast videos on Chromebooks, on Windows and Mac computers, on iPads, and on Android tablets. Many people who read this blog work in BYOD environments or otherwise need tools for creating screencasts on a variety of devices. Therefore, this morning I put together a PDF featuring my favorite screencasting tools and methods.
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Avoiding "Learned Helplessness" - Edutopia

Avoiding "Learned Helplessness" - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
We all have students that just want to "get it right." We all have students that constantly seek the attention of the teacher. "Did I get this right?" "Is this what you want?" Now while it's certainly a good thing to affirm students in their learning, many times we want students to be creative with their learning. We allow them to own their learning and create assessment products where they can show us what they know in new and inventive ways. Because of this, there isn't "one right answer," yet our students are often trained to think that there can be only one.

Similarly, we want students to be reflective, to ask themselves, "How do I know if I'm on the right track?" or "What could I do next?" Instead of coming immediately to the teacher, we want students to experiment on their own. Many of us wonder why students constantly do the opposite instead. I've got news for you. It's our fault. We, as educators, are often responsible for learned helplessness, and we have a responsibility to change it! How can we empower our students to be self-directed learners?
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12 Principles Of Modern Learning - TeachThought

12 Principles Of Modern Learning - TeachThought | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
What are the principles of modern learning?

Well, that depends on how you define ‘learning’ and what you’d consider ‘modern.’ Richard Olsen  put together this useful visual way, way back in 2013–a chart that lays out three categories of a modern approach to learning–Modern, Self-Directed, and Social.

These broad categories are then broken up into four principles per category. Each principle is then described by its Reality (its function) and Opportunity (the result of that function). Honestly, these two categories are a bit confusing–or at least the distinction between some of the entries are (the ability to participate and enables modern learners to participate, for example).
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Schools Aren't Teaching Students What They Need to Know

Schools Aren't Teaching Students What They Need to Know | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"We asked prominent voices in education—from policy makers and teachers to activists and parents—to look beyond laws, politics, and funding and imagine a utopian system of learning. They went back to the drawing board—and the chalkboard—to build an educational Garden of Eden. We’re publishing their answers to one question each day this week. Responses have been lightly edited for clarity and length.

Today’s assignment: The content. What should students be expected to know by the time they leave school?"

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Adele Byrd's curator insight, Today, 7:15 PM

This is very interesting

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10 Interesting Ways to Integrate #QR #Codes in Your Teaching (Infographic) ~ EdTech and mLearning

10 Interesting Ways to Integrate #QR #Codes in Your Teaching (Infographic) ~ EdTech and mLearning | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

Via Yuly Asencion, Jim Lerman
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Gust MEES's curator insight, August 29, 6:59 AM

With the advance of mobile technologies, QR Code technologies open up a vast terrain for educational uses. There are several ways teachers can leverage the educational potential of QR Codes in their instruction. The visual below sums up 10 interesting examples of how you can use QR Codes with your students. We have also included some interesting resources and video tutorials to help better understand the whole concept of QR Codes in education. Check them out and share with your colleagues. Enjoy...

 

Learn more / En savoir plus / Mehr erfahren:

 

http://www.scoop.it/t/21st-century-learning-and-teaching/?tag=QR+Codes

 

 

Walter Gassenferth's curator insight, August 30, 7:17 AM
Very interesting subject to be considered and discussed. I will disclose the post to my contacts and subscribers in http://www.quanticaconsultoria.com
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From preschool through high school: 24 great books that show empathy, kindness

From preschool through high school: 24 great books that show empathy, kindness | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
“When you read these books aloud, you can tell from their expressions that they are empathetic in relating to these characters. They understand what the characters are feeling,” says Sharon Rawlins, youth services specialist at the New Jersey State Library and president of the Collaborative Summer Library Program.

[Want to teach your kids about empathy and compassion? Read aloud.]

Here are her suggestions for books that embody that:
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Free Technology for Teachers: Six Good Places to Find Free Music and Sound Effects

Free Technology for Teachers: Six Good Places to Find Free Music and Sound Effects | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
In my post earlier today about tools for creating book trailer videos I mentioned a couple of sources of free sound effects and music. Picking the right music or sound effects can have a drastic influence on how we react to a scene in a video. Here are some places that you and your students can find free sound effects and music to download and use in video projects.
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Free Technology for Teachers: Wonderville - Science and Technology Games for Kids

Free Technology for Teachers: Wonderville - Science and Technology Games for Kids | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Wonderville is a great website for kids on which students can find games, videos, comics, and hands-on activities for learning about science and technology. The gallery of activities, games, videos, and comics is divided into three categories; fun science, awesome tech, and cool jobs
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10 Things You Can Do On Google Classroom - Simplek12

10 Things You Can Do On Google Classroom - Simplek12 | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Teachers love Google. So you likely shouldn’t be surprised that everyone has been talking about Google Classroom on Twitter recently. I watch social media closely and it’s my job to share some of the hot topics on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and other outlets that teachers, principals, students, and parents are contributing.

Google Classroom, described on the Google website as “designed hand-in-hand with teachers to help them save time, keep classes organized, and improve communication with students.” You receive access by signing in with your school Google account. Google Classroom is a one-stop Google shop for teachers, including lists of helpful products, training, and resources for students and teachers.  In fact, some of the world’s best Google training for teachers comes from SimpleK12, and you can check out upcoming Google Classroom webinars here, many free.
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Victor Ventura's curator insight, August 26, 8:27 AM
"Why teachers use a Google Classroom is obvious. How to use it less so." In WPS, T's have access through their Google account. Start here if you are not aware of the possibilities.
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5 Reasons to Read for Reluctant Readers

5 Reasons to Read for Reluctant Readers | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Teachers may offer up a killer classroom library and carve out class time for silent reading, but these two things do not guarantee prolific reading, or even moderate reading from your students. One of my goals when I was teaching high school was this: to have students fall in love with reading while they were in my classroom (or at least like it a little more).

So how do you motivate secondary students in a deeper, lifelong reader way? It's not just about helping a student find that right book, as teachers often see as the ultimate mission, but it's about giving reasons for reading -- and really good ones. Because let's face it, there's plenty of stuff we all have to read that we may not be crazy about, but we know it's good for us. The following motivators are inspired by educator Kelly Gallagher's book, Reading Reasons: Motivational Mini-Lessons for Middle and High School.
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7 Characteristics of Great Professional Development | TeachThought Professional Development

7 Characteristics of Great Professional Development | TeachThought Professional Development | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
As the end of the school year draws to a close, administrators start pulling together their PD plans for the summer in preparation for the next year. Meanwhile, teachers sit anxiously by with the dread that can only come with the anticipation of the dreaded PD days that their contract says they must attend. It’s not that teachers don’t want to grow and improve their craft. They do, and they find it refreshingly professionalizing when they get to. It’s just that this ain’t their first rodeo. They’ve been made to sit through pointless professional development in the past and they lament that they’re thinking “how long will this last and what will I have to turn in…and when is lunch?” as they trudge toward the library down the hallway that so obviously lacks the normal student energy they’ve used as fuel for the past 9 months. But it doesn’t have to be like that. In fact, if we do things well, teachers are likely to come away from their professional development energized and excited.
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