Professional Learning for Busy Educators
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Professional Learning for Busy Educators
Professional learning in a glance (or two)!
Curated by John Evans
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8 interactive Google Slides activities for classroom excitement - Ditch That Textbook

8 interactive Google Slides activities for classroom excitement - Ditch That Textbook | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
y thinking outside the box with Google Slides, PowerPoint and other similar tools, teachers can create unique learning experiences for students. Or students can create them to share with other students.

Here are eight Google Slides activities that use the unique features of online slide apps to create engaging learning experiences:
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It’s Time to Breakout… in Elementary – Krissy Venosdale @Venspired

It’s Time to Breakout… in Elementary – Krissy Venosdale @Venspired | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Confession: I’ve been following the BreakoutEdu craze on social media.  Full Disclosure: I didn’t get it. I was skeptical. Locks?  Huh?

So I stuck with it.  I looked at challenges, I watched videos, and I joined the BreakoutEdu group on Facebook.  I saw someone write about using disappearing ink to reveal a clue.  That was it.  Something clicked and I became a huge fan. Teamwork? Critical thinking? Problem solving? Creativity?  Win, all the way around.  Give kids a chance to be a spy, or Inspector Gadget, or the problem solver you know they can be!

And then I read about Michael Medvinsky using the game with first graders to unlock an extra recess.  And I may have hugged my BreakoutEdu kit, right there at my desk.   Once again, I had underestimated the power of a tool to be integrated at the youngest levels of learners… of course! Imagination, play, and collaboration?  That screams elementary!
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Sixteen Steps Every Educator Should Take in 2016 - Gerald Aungst

Sixteen Steps Every Educator Should Take in 2016 - Gerald Aungst | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"Educators have the benefit of getting a fresh start not once but twice a year. We have the start of school in September, then the turning of the calendar in January.


Fresh starts often involve fresh commitments. I propose that every educator should make the commitment today to take sixteen new steps in 2016 to deepen their knowledge, sharpen their craft, and stretch out of their comfort zone. In no particular order:"

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More Playtime! How Kids Succeed with Recess Four Times a Day at School

More Playtime! How Kids Succeed with Recess Four Times a Day at School | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
As schools cut back on recess to make more time for tests and test prep, a handful of schools are bringing recess back, and more of it, to positive results.
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Kelly Christopherson's curator insight, January 6, 4:43 PM

Play is so important for children - unstructured play. It's finding a way to allow students to play during a time when individual issues have causes schools to be even more conscious of what some parents might do if there are problems. 

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How Teachers Can Use Quicktime Video Screenshots to Help Students Learn | Edudemic

How Teachers Can Use Quicktime Video Screenshots to Help Students Learn | Edudemic | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Tutorial videos are a great way for teachers to provide extra learning resources for students. With these recorded videos, students are able to review the lessons learned in class and catch up from afar during an absence. Videos also provide an excellent resource for future reference.

Screenshot videos are a great learning resource when used to teach computer-based lessons such as computer programming, typing, or learning various programs. But they can also be used in other creative ways to teach students. For example, math problems can be solved step-by-step. Screenshots are especially useful for complicated new concepts.

In this article, we go into detail with step-by-step instructions for how to record video screenshots, as well as how to upload them to video hosting websites.
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6 Things That the HAPPIEST Teachers Do Every Day

6 Things That the HAPPIEST Teachers Do Every Day | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"We ALL know who they are.  They’re the teachers who are smiling almost every time you pass them in the hallways. They look energized and motivated.  Most of the time, they’ll take a moment to ask how your day is going or about something in your personal life.  They’re the teachers who are adored by their students and parents.  They rarely pass on negative information or chime in during a teacher gripe fest.  They truly and genuinely LOVE their jobs, and it shows.


Truthfully, I’ve had years where I really felt like this teacher and other years that I envied those who did.  But you know what I’ve figured out over the years? That this magical positive glow and overall attitude of happiness about teaching is a daily CHOICE when you enter your school building.

 

In the wise words of Abraham Lincoln, 
“Folks are usually about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”""

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Victor Ventura's curator insight, January 13, 1:00 PM

Be happy and let them know it!

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TechChef » CoJournaling as a Way to Nurture Positive Tendencies

TechChef » CoJournaling as a Way to Nurture Positive Tendencies | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"Over the years, my blog has evolved and my boys continue to grow. I find that the content that I share also becomes diversified. Thus, I am adding a new category… “Leveraging Learning at Home“. While we enjoy the holidays with our families and begin setting goals for 2016, I am reminded ofAngela Maiers and the idea of mattering. Her session and keynote at Miami Device really resonated with me. As I spent more time concentrating on this idea, I sought to delve in to the research behind this concept:"

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A Collection of Some of The Best Educational Mac Apps for Teachers ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

A Collection of Some of The Best Educational Mac Apps for Teachers ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

Mac Apps for Teachers is a resource page we created in EdTech and mLearning last year. We have been receiving several emails from teachers using Macs in their instruction asking about recommendations for educational  apps to use on Mac. We went ahead and created this section to share with our readers some of the best curated Mac apps to use in class with students. The collection below features some of the popular posts we have covered in this section so far.

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An Educator's Gift to Their Learners: Seeing Each One of Them @JackieGerstein

An Educator's Gift to Their Learners: Seeing Each One of Them @JackieGerstein | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
One of the greatest gifts an educator can give to their learners is to see each one; really see each and every one of them. Some strategies to do this include:
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Linda Buckmaster's curator insight, January 3, 6:13 PM

One of the greatest gifts an educator can give to their learners is to see each one; really see each and every one of them. Some strategies to do this include:

Jane Smith's curator insight, January 3, 10:59 PM

Listen, make a decision, take action.

StacyLada's curator insight, January 4, 7:00 AM

Useful reminder for a good teacher

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20 FREE characters to encourage Scientific Thinking - Daily Genius

20 FREE characters to encourage Scientific Thinking - Daily Genius | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"I’ve learnt a few things in my 15 years of classroom teaching. One of these gems is ‘the power of visuals’ to prompt, stimulate little imaginations.

Whether it be using world builders to ignite creative writing, or a simple image to develop thinking routines.

One subject area that I see huge potential to prompt thinking is Science. I often have my students taking photo’s of different stages of science experiments and investigations. But it is sometimes difficult for my students to think scientifically and communicate these ideas with others.

So here are 20 FREE kids scientist images that I hope will act as a stimulus for scientific thinking."

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Free Technology for Teachers: 10 Things Students Can Do With Google Keep

Free Technology for Teachers: 10 Things Students Can Do With Google Keep | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
At the end of October Google added a drawing option to Google Keep. The drawing tool in Google Keep offers a large variety of line colors and thicknesses. Drawings can be added to existing notes or can be created as stand-alone notes. And like other Google Keep notes, drawn notes can be shared from Keep to Google Docs. Creating drawings is just one of many ways that students can use Google Keep. Here are ten ways that students can use Google Keep on Android devices.
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7 Great Educational Web Tools That Encourage Inquiry-based Research ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

7 Great Educational Web Tools That Encourage Inquiry-based Research ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
ReadWriteThink is one of our favourite resources for interactive tools and materials to use with students in class. We have already reviewed several of its tools in previous posts here in EdTech and mLearning. Today, we are sharing with you this awesome collection of web-based applications that facilitate and encourage inquiry-based learning. These interactives cover different themes and can be used with various grade levels. We invite you to check them out  and share with your colleagues.
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Learning Centers in the Secondary Classroom @Edutopia

Learning Centers in the Secondary Classroom @Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
he sound of activity echoes throughout the classroom. I find myself engaged in a small-group conversation around the igneous rocks that the students in this group are holding. Remembering that shortly before that conversation I'd been about to redirect some students, I quickly scan the room searching for off-task behavior. To my delight, I find that a wide array of learning is taking place. In one corner, I see students watching a video and typing online reflections. In the other corner, I see students comparing their drawings on the rock cycle. This is what a good day built on learning centers looks like.

As teachers strive to find ways of promoting key success skills while making use of limited resources, learning centers can be an invaluable tool in the secondary classroom. In addition, learning centers provide time-strapped teachers with opportunities for meaningful formative assessment that helps drive the classroom instruction. What are some strategies that secondary teachers can use to successfully launch learning centers in their classrooms?
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5-Minute Film Festival: Classroom Makeovers to Engage Learners

5-Minute Film Festival: Classroom Makeovers to Engage Learners | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Most educators have little choice about the (usually) over-crowded, (often) unappealing rooms they teach in -- but they intuitively know that the spaces children spend their time in can have an effect on how they learn. I've gathered a collection of videos to explore the questions: How important is environment to learning? And what small changes can you make in seating, organization, lighting, and decor to build your own space into a better place to teach and learn?
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Editor’s Picks 2015, No. five: Journey to the student-centered makerspace

Editor’s Picks 2015, No. five: Journey to the student-centered makerspace | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Ed. note: This year the editors selected ten stories we believe either highlighted an important issue in 2015 and/or signaled the beginning of an escalating trend or issue for 2016 (look for No. 1 on Dec. 31). The modern makerspace exploded this year, popping up in schools across the country and snagging a spot on the New Media Consortium’s Horizon Report as a trend to watch. In this piece, educator Abbe Waldron takes the concept further, using students to lead the transformation.
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7 Pros & Cons Of Teaching With Genius Hour - TeachThought

7 Pros & Cons Of Teaching With Genius Hour - TeachThought | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Genius hour is trending in education, and for good reason. It is an attempt to restore the personalization, creativity, and authenticity that has been designed out of many schools and classrooms in the modern testing era of ed reform.

We’ve offered a definition for genius hour in the past, and discussed the principles of genius hour before. Below we’ve listed 7 strengths and challenges of teaching with/through genius hour (we’ve used the simpler but slightly less accurate terms “pros” and “cons”).
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Jerry Busone's curator insight, January 7, 6:38 AM

An idea catching on in Corporate America to drive innovation ...theres potential for corporate learning exercises

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13 of the Best Hand Puppets for Creative Learning and Fun - FRACTUS LEARNING

13 of the Best Hand Puppets for Creative Learning and Fun - FRACTUS LEARNING | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Hand puppets are a relatively simple toy. They don’t require batteries, have lots of parts, or use blinking screens. However, they do use your child’s creativity and can easily provide endless hours of interactive fun. Puppets encourage children to actively use their imagination. They also foster communication skills, motor skills, language, and hand-eye coordination. They are fun for play on their own or kids can put on performances in a puppet theater.

In addition to play, hand puppets are excellent teaching tools. They are an engaging way to educate about different animals and are perfect for storytelling time. A hand puppet acting out a story is a wonderful way to keep an entire classroom of children entertained.
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The 3 Stages of Documentation OF/FOR/AS Learning - @langwitches

The 3 Stages of Documentation OF/FOR/AS Learning - @langwitches | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

Documentation OF/FOR/AS Learning has many objectives, goals, levels, and components. My work is concentrating on making pedagogical documentation visible and shareable to amplify teaching and learning. I believe that using technology, as a tool, to be able to share best practices, to make thinking and learning visible to ourselves and others, is the key to transform teaching and learning. I am documenting and sharing my own process around:

     * defining documentation
     * levels of doumentation
     * making documentation visible and shareable
     * sharing documentation in action (how does it look like in the classroom of for professional learning)
     * developing a toolkit for learners (adults & children) to facilitate   documentation via different media and platforms
     * stages of documentation

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Our Top 10 Educational Windows Apps for Teachers and Educators ~ EdTech and MLearning

Our Top 10 Educational Windows Apps for Teachers and Educators ~ EdTech and MLearning | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Similar to Mac Apps for Teachers, Educational Windows Apps is a resource section we created last year to help teachers using Windows in their instruction find and access educational Windows apps. We haven’t published a lot in there yet but we are planning to invest more time in Windows apps store this year. However, if you are looking for some good educational Windows apps to start with, the collection below features some of the most popular Windows apps among teachers and educators. We are re-sharing it with you below hoping you will find it helpful. Enjoy
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A Personal Top 10 (or so) List of Top 10 (or so) Lists — @joycevalenza NeverEndingSearch

A Personal Top 10 (or so) List of Top 10 (or so) Lists — @joycevalenza NeverEndingSearch | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
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Bookmarking Librarian's curator insight, January 3, 6:37 PM
Awesome list from @joycevalenza!
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3 Ways to Embrace ThingLink EDU in the New Year

3 Ways to Embrace ThingLink EDU in the New Year | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Happy New Year to All!
ThingLink EDU has continued to grow in 2015 to include more than 1,000,000 edu users. Along the way we’ve developed some pretty great ways to use our amazing tool to transform teaching and learning. Please explore 3 Ways to Embrace ThingLink EDU in the New Year. We hope you will get inspired to try one of these ideas in the classroom this year!
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Free Technology for Teachers: Dozens of Great PowerPoints for AP History Students & Teachers

Free Technology for Teachers: Dozens of Great PowerPoints for AP History Students & Teachers | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
As I've mentioned in the past, Tom Richey produces great instructional videos for students taking AP US History, World History, and Government courses. Recently, I learned that he's also publishing many of the PowerPoint presentations that appear in his videos. From his PowerPoint page you can download any of Tom's dozens of presentations on US History, European History, or World History. Tom also offers a couple of presentations on US Government.
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10 Strategies To Make Learning Feel More Like A Game

10 Strategies To Make Learning Feel More Like A Game | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
We’ve talked about gamification quite a bit, which is different than game-based learning, if you’ll recall. (The definition of gamification is the application of game-like mechanics to non-game entities to encourage a specific behavior. You can read more if you’d like.)

Making your classroom work like a game may not be feasible. Terry Heick talked some about the idea in the past, but was talking specifically about video games, whereas many of the items below are inclined more to “games” in general. So we’ve decided to re-approach from another angle with more specific strategies instead of general suggestions.
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HJJP's curator insight, January 2, 1:59 AM

For centuries we thought that teaching and learning were about the expertise and knowledge of the person delivering the information. However, we now know that the process of delivering, the environment, in essence the psychology of learning plays a much more important role. Making learning feel like a game is one of those techniques which have demonstrated to achieve better results, than those that make learning feel like a chore. The attached article provides some tools to help making learning more like a game than a chore.

Johan van der Merwe's curator insight, January 2, 2:21 AM

Improve skill mastery

Melissa Spears's curator insight, January 14, 1:41 AM

Game based learning is more powerful than stereotyped learning. Students get more interest in it and can generate more ideas through various activities. a very useful write up.