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Technology Doesnâ€™t Teach, Teachers Teach! By: Bill Goodwyn
SPECIAL POINTS OF INTEREST: INFOhioâ€™s 21st Century Learning Commons Hot Stuff and other things! Why Must Schools Change How They Teach? What Should Be Our Guiding Questions? 3 Unique Online Presentation Tools For Schools The eBook Book is Coming! Great Free Websites for Teaching the Election
Education is experiencing a seismic change. The chalkboard and print-based textbook classroom of yesterday is fast becoming the digital-whiteboard and e-book classroom of tomorrow. But as students across the country head back to school this month, the companies charged with helping to implement these changes cannot forget the golden rule: the motherboard and the memory chip will never replace the passion and inspiration of a real-life teacher. Technology doesn't teach. Teachers teach. All of us involved in education received the same mandate this past winter from President Obama and Secretary of Edu-
cation Arne Duncan: to replace traditional, static textbooks with dynamic, interactive digital textbooks within the next five years. Several organizations have accepted this challenge enthusiastically and are partnering with districts every day to help transform classrooms into the digital learning environments our leaders envision. But the process is complicated. Our every move affects tomorrow. No matter how far we evolve from the little red schoolhouse, we cannot afford to sacrifice the foundation of education that is built upon the unique relationship between teacher and student. At the same time, we know that new classroom technology, when used effectively, can produce
amazing results across socioeconomic lines. So we are constantly studying models to strike the right balance. We have seen the power of new technology in practice, especially when used by effectively trained teachers. In an initiative to replace traditional social studies textbooks, those students using digital tools in the Indianapolis Public Schools system, in which 85 percent of students are enrolled in subsidized lunch programs, had a 27 percent higher passing rate on statewide progress tests than students in classrooms that were not plugged in.
ASCD Free Professional Development Webinars ASCD is a membership organization that develops programs, products, and services essential to the way educators learn, teach, and lead. ASCD is currently providing free professional development through various webinars. Some topics include:
Flipped Mastery Learning
How to Build Students' Com-
Virtual Summer Camp: The Newest Tools on the Web
prehension, Reasoning, and Problem-Solving Skills
to Explore for Instruction, Beyond Differentiation
Reading for Meaning: How to Build Students' Com-
Common Core: Assessment Shifts
prehension, Reasoning, and Problem-Solving Skills
Why Aren't They Paying Attention?
How To Support Struggling Students
Reading for Meaning:
Hot Stuff: and other things!
MindMeister—Mind maps are the quintessential method of visual thinking. By using a central topic, and creating branches to expand upon this topic, users maintain up to 10% more information. While slide shows and points of power are effective methods of presentations, why not improve your viewers’ retention of your topic as well?
ToonDoo—Have your students create their own cartoon to demonstrate their understanding of a concept or topic you are teaching in your classroom. ToonDoo is a fun and interactive way for students to present information. http://www.toondoo.com/
Timetoast— Allows your students to create interactive timelines. You can add information, pictures, and hyperlinks within your timeline. You can browse through pre-made timelines or you can create your own to share with others!
INFOhio’s 21st Century Learning Commons INFOhio's 21st Cen-
“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”
tury success. All while hav-
skills, INFOhio Videos, a
tury Learning Commons is
ing the opportunity to col-
glossary relevant to Web
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and collaborative site where
sionals about their study of
cussion forums that allow
classroom teachers, admin-
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you to collaborate with
istrators and librarians can
learning! At the Learning
other peers. Registration is
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Why Must Schools Change How They Teach? What’s at Stake? Schools were built upon the fundamental that teachers and knowledge and information were scarce. That is no longer the reality. Now, as so many more of us gain faster and broader access to the Web, all of those things are suddenly abundant. That means that the traditional role of school, to deliver an education, is quickly becoming less and less relevant. If we continue to see schools as the place where our
children go to master a narrow list of content, knowledge and skills that were originally defined almost 150 years ago, we risk putting those kids out into the world with little idea of how to take advantage of the explosion of learning opportunities that now exist. The problem, however, is that most “reform” efforts are aimed at simply doing what we’ve been doing better, almost exclusively in the form of raising test scores.
But doing “better” on measures that don’t account for this huge shift we’re in the midst of is the absolute wrong emphasis. Instead, we need to think very differently about the experiences, outcomes, skills and literacies we desire for our kids when they come to school. By: Jim Daly
What Should Be Our Guiding Questions? I believe that guiding questions
legislators, and the public are
are important. As our world changes radically and rapidly,
asking right now]:
we may not have answers (yet) but we can at least try to ask the
right questions. Here are some guiding questions that I’ve been bouncing around for my own work with educators, schools, communities, and policymakers [note that they're often very different from the questions that most educational reformers,
What can we do to increase the cognitive complexity of students’ day to day work so that they are more often doing deeper thinking and learning work? What can we do to better incorporate digital technologies into students’ deeper thinking and learning work in ways that are authentic, relevant, meaningful, and powerful?
By: Scott McLeod
What can we do to give students more agency and ownership of what they learn, when they learn, how they learn, and how they show what they’ve learned?
What can we do to build the internal capacity of both individual educators and school systems to be better learners and faster change agents?
As we move toward more cognitively complex, technology-infused learning environments, how do we bring educators, board members, parents, communities, policymakers, and higher education along with us?
“Everyone has a fair turn to be as great as he pleases.”
iCloud does more than store your content — it lets you access your music, photos, calendars, contacts, documents, and more, from whatever device you’re on. You can even download it on a PC! http://www.apple.com/icloud/setup/
LiveBinders—With online binders you can combine all of your cloud documents, website links and upload your desktop documents - to then easily access, share, and update your binders from anywhere. Students can also create an online binder to share with you and other classmates.
Mixbook—Students can create their own online book using Mixbook. They can use templates that are already created or they can create their own book from scratch. They can even illustrate the book with images and graphics. They can then present their book online to their classmates .
3 Unique Online Presentation Tools for Schools 1.Prezi—Prezi is an online presentation tool that works with a “zoom in, zoom out, tilt” technique to create a dynamic and entertaining alternative to the standard slideshow. Its basic service is free to use with an account signup, and for a charge you can update to more professional versions.
2. Zoho Show— Zoho Show is an online presentation tool that helps you to create and deliver presentations. You can now take your presentations wherever you go, apply new ideas instantly, review, edit, share and deliver presentations on the go.
3. GoAnimate- Here's another great animated presentation tool for use in the classroom or the workplace. Check out GoAnimate 4 Schools to see how this fantastic animated video maker can enhance your students' learning experiences. Choose from a wide range of different backgrounds, and customize your characters with lots of different appearance options.
The eBook Boom is Coming! By: Peter Nowak If you thought ebooks were growing quickly, then you—as the saying goes—ain’t seen nothing yet. A confluence of factors set in motion last week are likely to push ebook sales from explosive to exponential. First up there was the Department of Justice’s settlement with Hachette, HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster, wherein the three publishers were found to have participated in “a conspiracy to raise, fix, and stabilize the retail price for newly-released and bestselling trade e-books, to end retail price competition among trade e-books retailers, and to limit retail price competition.” A judge last week approved the settlement, which will prevent the three publishers from agreeing to any sort of contract with an ebook retailer that lets them set prices for two years. The companies will also not be allowed to enter into “most-favoured nation” deals, which guarantee a certain retailer the best price on their goods, for five years. Apple and two publishers, Penguin and Macmillan, are holding out and saying that their “agency pricing” deal was designed to counter Amazon’s growing power and therefore make the ebook market more competitive, not less. The fight will continue, but ebooks from the three publishers who settled are expected to take a nose dive. A return to Amazon’s $9.99 price point is a veritable certainty, while the fact that ebook prices rose in general once Apple entered the market seems like a pretty damning fact in general. On another front, Amazon also unveiled a host of new e-readers/tablets for several markets last week. The company will soon start selling several versions of the Kindle Fire HD tablet, ranging from $199 for the seven-inch version to $499 for an 8.9-inch model with LTE wireless connectivity. The Kindle Paperwhite e-reader, meanwhile, features an e-ink screen that closely resembles paper and sells for $119, with a 3G version going for $179. The plain, old, basic Kindle, meanwhile, will cost only $69. Yup, an e-reader will now cost about the same as two hardcover books. If these upgraded, cheaper devices don’t spur even more consumers in the U.S., U.K. and several European countries to snap up e-readers and tablets, nothing will.
Great Free Websites for Teaching the Election in. iSideWith.com lets students take a short quiz to find out which candidate is their best match based on their own political opinions.
Election Pen Pals: At PenPal News Red Blue you can sign up your classroom to be pen pals with students from a different geographic region in the U.S. Over a six week period, your class will learn about five important election issues that they can write about during their pen-pal partnership. 2.
2. Political Matchmaking: Sometimes the incessant mudslinging and obsessive poll watching hide the fact that the election should really be about the issues that affect our lives and the world we live
Issue Research: The most comprehensive tool for researching the candidate’s stance on issues is the nonpartisan nonprofit ProCon.org. The site provides quotations from Mr. Obama, Mr. Romney and the major third party candidates on more than 60 issues. Election Game: We’ve seen plenty of buzz about MTV’s Fantasy Election, an online game styled after the ultrapopular fantasy football leagues. Participants draft a team of presidential and Con-
gressional candidates and rack up points based on how well the candidates perform in various categories such as transparency and honesty. We signed up ourselves, but it’s still too early to tell if the game will appeal to students the same way fantasy sports teams do.
http://fantasyelection.mtv.com 5. Candidate Commercials: Having students analyze television commercials can help hone their media literacy skills. Watch the candidates’ commercials on their respective YouTube channels, or watch historic commercials from past presidential elections on The Living Room Candidate. You can use our Television Commercial Analysis Chart to help guide student analysis.