Though many teachers remain against reckless #edtech integration, the conversation is clearly shifting from should technology play a central role in the learning process to how should technology be used to promote learning?
Karen Bonanno's insight:
This may be a tall order. Consider "how' technology will engage students in learning and tackle a few.
Infographics are an awesome way to convey a lot of complex information relatively quickly and engagingly. These apps and websites for creating and designing infographics can help both teachers and students communicate their ideas and demonstrate learning, stretching visual an
Watching videos then answering questions about them is the basic premise of a lot of flipped classroom lessons. To take that idea to higher level, invite students to ask questions and or and notations to videos that you have shared with them.
Google Slides has become a universal tool for students to use on any device. In this video, Greg Kulowiec (@gregkulowiec) shows how students could collaboratively design a book using Google Slides and then publish it with the digital publishing platform, Issuu.
Blendspace is a tool that provides many possibilities and initially I used it as a method of curating resources and flipping my classroom. There are similar tools available, and regardless of which you choose, having one place to keep your resources is a really great idea.
Karen Bonanno's insight:
Communicate and collaborate with your students using Blendspace.
Cultivating a classroom community where substantive discussions like this can happen is challenging work -- it's an ongoing process that takes time. But onlinediscussion activities are one great way to give your students a leg up; use them as scaffolding for the "real" thing. Plus, the ability to engage in onlinediscourse responsibly is a great 21st-century skill in and of itself.
One of the challenges of teaching in a high school or middle school that uses block scheduling is many students struggle to focus for 80 minute, 90 minute, or longer blocks of time. I always try to break up blocks like this into shorter segments with breaks. To prevent breaks from running too long, I always use a timer. I also use timers to time break-out activities. Whenever it is possible to do so, I like to display the timer countdown on a projector or whiteboard so that all of the students can see it. These are the three timer tools that recommend more than any others.
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