Monthly Archives: April 2014

Worth a read 04/29/2014

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Worth a read 04/24/2014

  • Have you ever been to a professional learning day or conference and been so inspired that you just want to get back to school and start straight away? Yes- excellent! But what happens when you get back to school and things may not go to plan- days and weeks pass, you forget what you learnt, and the inspiration dwindles…
    Enter Evernote. How about we do something with all of that information. Take what you have learnt, have it accessible and put it into practice. Refer to it, make changes, add thoughts and ideas, receive feedback. Innovate. Develop. Learn. Repeat!

    Evernote makes me a better teacher because it is a tool I use that enables me to successfully manage all of my learning. I want to share with you some ways I use Evernote to do this. There is a lot. My advice- choose one thing you are not already doing and have a go! Evernote is such a personal tool, everyone I know uses it differently, they have their own pro tips, tweaks and ideas. If the ways I use Evernote do not work for you, change it, make it work so it does. You won’t be sorry!

    tags: Evernote KDSBytes professional learning productivity

  • Even though I am “techy,” I always espouse that it’s never technology all the time. In fact, my classroom is always a hybrid environment. As such, my students write traditional, robust research essays every year. This assignment requires that they engage in sophisticated academic research, build a thesis, and then structure an academic argument. For many of my students (I currently teach 10th grade US History), this is the first research and argumentative essay that they have written. It’s a challenging project. In conjunction with our new roll out of Google Apps for Education, I decided to make this year’s research essay a paperless endeavor. This met several academic and school-wide objectives – building Digital Fluency and digital literacy across curriculum as well as promoting Ransom Everglades’s Greening initiative.

    tags: Google Drive google apps research writing KDSBytes

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Mathtrain

Maths teachers – have you seen Mathtrain.tv? It’s like a mini-Khan academy filled with fabulous short videos explaining maths concepts except all the videos have been created by students. Here’s a sample:

Player loading…

From the About us page:

Mathtrain.TV is a free educational “kids teaching kids” project from Mr. Marcos & his students at Lincoln Middle School in Santa Monica, CA. Mathtrain.TV was created by middle school mathematics teacher, Eric Marcos. It is part of the Mathtrain.com Project and was created to host our student-created math video lessons all in one place. It is Web 2.0 friendly with its ability for users to generate “ratings” and “comments”. Our middle school students use a tablet pc and screen-capturing software, Camtasia Studio, to create the math tutorials. The site is powered by PHPmotion, a free video-sharing software.

Students at Lincoln Middle School create math video lessons (screencasts or mathcasts) which are used for classroom instruction and posted onto sites such as Mathtrain.TV, Mathtrain.com, iTunes, YouTube, TeacherTube and Google Video. Our students work hard at creating the content and construct the best explanations they can in our unscripted format. The videos are offered free, “as is” (under a Creative Commons agreement) and we take no responsibility for any inaccuracies or errors which may exist in the content or site. All videos are reviewed (and sometimes further edited) by a credentialed math teacher. In an effort to make our videos available to many different learners, we are in the process of closed captioning (CC) our videos. At the moment, there may be two versions of the same video lesson on this site; one with and one without captioning. On other videos, we may “burn” the captions right onto the video itself. As technology progresses, we hope to offer our viewers not only the ability to toggle on and off between closed captioning but also alternative language subtitles. For more information about how to caption your own videos, go here: www.dcmp.org/ciy.

We invite students, teachers, parents and educators to join us and help contribute to this global collaborate effort. We are especially interested in student-created mathcasts, hence the “kids teaching kids” motto.

My motto is “Learn, do, teach” because it is through the act of showing someone else how to do something that I truly consolidate my knowledge. The content on Mathtrain.tv is fantastic and there is plenty to be learned there but wouldn’t your students’ mathematical skills benefit from creating similar explanatory videos? And what about other subjects? There is enormous scope for learning by teaching. Steve Wheeler has recently written about the value of Flipping the teacher (as opposed to the classroom) and has some other useful suggestions for how this can be done. The tools used are becoming more widely available and there are plenty of great examples out there. Let me know if you and your students have created any of these videos and they can be featured on Bytes. Or if you’d like to give it a try but don’t know where to start please get in touch.

iPad news and views 04/07/2014

  • “This is a site aimed at teachers, parents and children looking for great educational apps!  With many years experience teaching primary school children and coordinating ICT in schools we have scoured Apple’s app store, Google Play and lots of app-recommending websites and have tried out many apps in order to recommend what we consider the best educational apps available.  So many other websites recommending apps don’t actually research or try them first. We do!
    We aim to make finding suitable apps more straightforward and less time consuming.  Filter by age – there are apps for preschool, early years and Key Stage 1 and 2.  You can filter by subject.  Alternatively, if you know what you’re looking for, see if we list it using the search box.”

    tags: iPad apps KDSiPad

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Worth a read 04/07/2014

  • Cyber-bullying, update-addiction, sexting – from the perspective of a parent raising a ”digital native” child, social media seems fraught with dangers. But new research suggests the risks inherent in social media use by younger generations might be overblown.
    danah boyd, assistant research professor at Harvard and principal researcher for Microsoft Research – like k.d.lang, she prefers the lower case – has completed a large-scale study on how US teenagers use the internet in general, and social media in particular. Her book is called It’s Complicated, and is the result of in-depth interviews with scores of teens over an eight-year period.
    Her findings are intriguing. The result has not been the social disaster many pundits claim to see.

    tags: cybersafety bullying KDSBytes Danah Boyd

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

More Evernote

I promised to share more about Evernote, the truly awesome free tool that you can use on any computer, tablet or smartphone to “remember everything”. Used extensively by teachers and students around the world, there are many educational applications for Evernote

This video is from Melbourne’s very own Evernote Education Ambassador, primary teacher Rebecca Spink. The video gives you an overview of some of the ways she uses Evernote both as a personal productivity assistant and in managing her classroom and students. If you are interested in making videos and wonder how she did this, I can see that the video was made using Haiku Deck and iMovie, two of the apps we have installed on our class iPads.

Bec writes extensively about using Evernote in education on her blog Miss Spink on Tech. If you are at all interested in giving Evernote a go, whether on an iPad, phone, PC or Mac I highly recommend a browse through her articles. She also curates a Flipboard magazine about Evernote in Education where you’ll find many of her blog posts plus articles from other sources.

Have you tried Evernote yet?

iPad news and views 04/04/2014

  • “It’s National Poetry Month, the perfect time to fill the world with beautiful ideas and poetic power!

    For a little inspiration, we’re showcasing twelve terrific poetry projects from our incredibly creative community of educators. You’ll find projects for first graders and high schoolers, and everything from sensory poems to color explorations to poems about polliwogs. (We also think any of these would be just as fun for adults to try — a little creative expression is always good for the soul!)”

    tags: KDSiPad presentation tools poetry iPad

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Worth a read 04/04/2014

  • SAMR is a technology integration model that basically shows the way to get the most out of your technology in the classroom. The dotted line in the chart shows where you cross over from doing what you’ve always done – just adding technology – to doing what you couldn’t do before.Redefinition is at the top of the SAMR model, but that doesn’t mean that you “win” or that you’re doing it right only if you reach redefinition. Some tasks just aren’t made for redefinition, and great learning can happen without redefinition.

    tags: SAMR KDSBytes classroom activities technology

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.