Maker Space In Education Series… 20 Reasons Your Students Should Be Making

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It’s  still summer time in the States and I couldn’t help but think of the idea of play, and that of course made me think of Maker Space. I have long  encourage Making in the classroom. It wasn’t until recently that I discovered that this idea is now a movement and one that I suggest all 21st century educators Make some room for. I hope you enjoy this series and I encourage you to send me information and resources, as I am also Making time to learn.  First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Time to think about your new school year needs. Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is fully booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill! Remember that I have limited dates since I also still provide PD for my own district. Please contact me soon. – Mike

Maker Space In Education Series… 20 Reasons Your Students Should Be Making – Michael Gorman (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/)

Take a moment to contemplate what it would be like if every school had a Maker Space and it was part of the school curriculum. You may wish to dream of the possibilities for essential 21st century skill development and significant content skill alignment. Think about the aura of engagement, flow, grit, perseverance, problem solving, revision, reflection, and satisfaction in that amazing space. Contemplate parents asking the question, “What did you make in school today?” Now sit back and imagine the answer, and further conversations it would bring!

As you are probably already aware, there is a growing Maker Movement across the nation. In fact, you can see Maker Spaces finding room to serve the surging Maker population in both small and large towns alike. I know there is one in my hometown of Fort Wayne, Indiana. I looked in on another while conducting a PBL workshop deep in the southwest…  in Tucson, Arizona. On a recent visit to the PBS Network Studios to work with Digital Innovators I saw a large Makers Space on the first floor of the Arlington, Virginia building.

The idea behind the Makers Movement includes allowing people to imagine, envision, create, innovate, play, formatively learn, experiment, collaborate, share, and most of all dream of possibilities. The idea of making is really not a new concept. In fact,the art of making is at the root and mixed into to the very fabric of our culture. I believe that the amazing innovation we have seen in this country is due to a Maker mentality. We have long been a culture set on dreaming up possibilities, and then taking the action to make it happen. The initial growth of technology has somewhat taken some of our creativity and produced  consumption based thinking. We are now past the initial way of thinking, and the Makers movement allows people to finally use the technology to create and make.

It is encouraging to see that Education Maker Spaces are making space in numerous schools including elementary, middle, and high school. This was evident at the 2014 ISTE Convention in Atlanta with over 16,000 attendees and space for Maker vendors, Maker presentations, Maker playgrounds, and Maker possibilities. After all, childhood has long been a time that allows young minds to play and make. It is important to understand that allowing kids to be Makers opens the doors to personalized and authentic learning. Let me share a list that I feel are positive qualities that schools can Make as take away ideas from the Makers Movement.

  • Allow for student intrinsic motivation and self-directed learning
  • Support students in a natural connection toward the facilitation of the 4 C’s
  • Engage students in significant content by allowing for connections to curriculum
  • Immerse students in experiences that promote the idea of flow
  • Provide students opportunities that allow then to fail in order to succeed
  • Emphasize to students and teachers the importance of process over outcome
  • Amplify or introduce to students the components of a school STEM disciplines
  • Provide for student opportunities to enhance Project, Problem, Design, Inquiry, and Challenge Based Learning
  • Promote student literacy through writing, reflecting, and journal writing while Making in specific subject areas
  • Engage students in relevance and connections through a authentic learning experience
  • Promote service student learning by identify and inventing solutions to local and world problems
  • Allow students to see the importance and value of the arts
  • Allow students to be a part of partnerships between school, home, and community
  • Create opportunities for students to be producers of content and products
  • Facilitate to students the idea of entrepreneurship through innovation
  • Provide students an opportunity to connect with college and career opportunities
  • Allow for student mentorship between students and also between community and students
  • Give students the opportunity to learn through kinesetic opportunities
  • Introduce students to the iterative process for problem solving
  • Support student inquiry by relaying the importance of good questions and continued questioning

I started this post out with dreams and imagination of what can be. Some schools are already making it happen. Perhaps your school and students are next? It might just begin with some Maker time in your own classroom… or even after school. It really is time  for you  to… Make it happen. If you already are… please share with me via email. I would like to highlight what you are doing.

I invite you to continue to follow this series as I learn and share more about the Maker Movement and education. I have already started to collect some amazing links to share in this series. I am sure you can see that allowing kids to be Makers promotes so many aspects of what 21st century learning and technology is all about. I really do hope this Makes your week… and of course those weeks still waiting to be Made!

I hope you found this information is something you can use in your school and share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy Making! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Get ready for more links and resources on this series covering the Maker Movement in K12 Education and also a collection on the connections between PBL, STEM and Technology Integration… first make some time to sign up and follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). –  Michael Gorman (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is fully booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill! Remember that I have limited dates since I also still provide PD for my own district. Please contact me soon. – Mike

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Part 5: Forty…Now Fifty…Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

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It’s summer time and you really didn’t think I would stop at 4o sites… especially when I can make it one half of a hundred!  I have really enjoyed sharing these websites I feel should be in every teacher’s toolbox! I have now have fifty… maybe more someday (Chapter 2?). This is post number five… remember I am picking these from thousands.  It is my way of saying happy summer!   First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Time to think about your new school year needs. Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is fully booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill! Remember that I have limited dates since I also still provide PD for my own district. Please contact me soon. – Mike

 Part 5: Forty… Now Fifty… Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

Get ready for a series on Maker Movement in K12 Education… first make some time to sign up and follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). –  Michael Gorman (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/)

EasyBib

  • Generate free MLA citations
  • Autocite or Manual Entry to learn process
  • Citation Guides assist in locating information  from various types of source
  • Fee based  services remove ads or generate APA, Chicago and others

PrintFriendly

  • Generate printouts of web pages without ads and navigational clutter
  • Easily add the Bookmarklet to your browser
  • Add the Button to your webpage
  • Print, email, or save PDF file

Curriculet

  • Enables teachers to deliver customized, Common Core aligned learning and digitally
  • Create and share their curriculum and lesson materials
  • Embed a layer of questions, quizzes, and rich media annotations into any reading assignment
  • Track mastery of literacy skills and Common Core standards in real-time

EdPuzzle

  • Use only what you need from any video.  Search for videos from Youtube, Khan Academy, LearnZillion, Crash Course, etc.
  • Insert audio notes or record over a video with your voice
  • Add questions along the video to give your students immediate feedback and track their understanding.
  • You can also upload your own videos to EDpuzzle and make them perfect for your class.

Quizlet

  • Tailor Quizlet study sessions to your students’ different learning styles and goals
  • Millions of students use Quizlet at home, to study everything from languages to science to history
  • Generate self-grading practice quizzes or print handouts for your students
  • Liven up your classroom with study games that your students will love to play

Geddit

  • Know how every student is doing at any moment… A free app that works on any web-enabled device in the 1:1 classroom
  • Students give instant feedback about their understanding in private and in real-time
  • Check for evidence of understanding with multiple choice or short answer responses
  • Student driven: Differentiation made easy while students learn skills of metacognition

Citelighter

  • 21st Century Critical Thinking Platform
  • Bringing research, organization, and writing to one place
  • Highlight and save from anywhere … Export to a file or send via email
  • Bibliography in APA or MLA

Research Ready

  • Evaluate a website for research
  • Use critical thinking skills to examine a site
  • Online form with evaluation questions
  • Email finished form of evaluated website

ProConIt

  • Allow for students to look at the opposite views of a subject
  • Created polls and forums
  • Encourage discussion
  • Get feedback

Paper Rater

  • Formative tool for evaluating writing
  • Checks writing, spelling, vocabulary, composition, structure
  • Gives a report style feedback with even a grade
  • Differentiates on different styles of writing

Thank you for joining me and if you have an idea website I should include… please let me know. It might be part of what follows after these 50 in a future series! Remember that many of these are Web 2.0 tools so be sure to check their Terms of Use, Privacy, and your own district AUP.  I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and to share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL,Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Get ready for a series on Maker Movement in K12 Education… first make some time to sign up and follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). –  Michael Gorman (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

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Part 4: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

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Summer is wonderful and  its already July! We actually have time to relax, enjoy, and even discover a new website! It is so much fun to be sharing these websites I feel should be in every teacher’s toolbox! I have forty… actually 50… because I found ten more and  I am sending out these ten new ones in the next post. This is post number four… remember I am picking these from thousands.  It is my way of saying happy summer!   First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

 Part 4: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

 Brainscape

  • Multimedia “flashcards” to simplify learning
  • Teachers can create flashcards for their subjects for free
  • Class license for Premium Subjects available for a fee
  • Web and iOS platform

Quozio

  • Turn “beautiful words into meaningful images in seconds”
  • Bookmarklet – immediate creation of highlighted text from webpage – be mindful of copyright
  • Account (free) required only  to save or upload

Realtime Board

  • Visual whiteboards with media files for brainstorming and organizing
  • Get feedback from students and discuss in real time
  • Works with Google Drive

Zunal

  • Create interactive webquests quickly with no HTML code
  • Free account with 100 templates
  • Add unlimited files and pictures or
  • embed video
  • Explore thousands of user shared webquests

National Archives Digital Vault

  • Click on a record to launch images for investigation
  • Add images to a collection tray
  • Create posters, movies and Pathways Challenges

NuSkool

  • Created for students in grades 6 -12
  • Search for lessons by grade, subject, genre
  • Teach core subjects using popular culture
  • Engage students by relating to things they know and care about

PixiClip

  • Whiteboard canvas for communicating your message
  • Upload and mark up images or draw them
  • Add media via webcam and mic
  • Share or embed your PixiClip

QR Voice

  • Use your voice to record a message
  • Generate the QR code
  • Scan with device using QR scanner to hear message
  • Save/Share/Print/Embed

QR Code Generator

  • Generate codes that link to information you want to share
  • Print or digitally share the code
  • Use your imagination!

ePubBud

  • Create and publish an eBook readable on iPad, nook, and other devices
  • Upload a document you want to share and it will be converted to ePub format
  • Browse and import shared
  • ebooks  to your iPad

 

Thank you for joining me and if you have an idea website I should include… please let me know. It might be part of what follows after 40! I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and to share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL,Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

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Part 3: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

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We are getting already in the first week of July! I am still  sharing some of those websites I feel should be in every teacher’s toolbox! I have forty… maybe more… and I am sending out ten new ones in each post. This is post number three… remember I am picking these from thousands.  It is my way of saying happy summer!   First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is fully booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

 Part 3: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

 Open Library

  • Borrow books from the Internet Archive and other libraries
  • View BookReader editions instantly online in a browser
  • Access to 1.7 million scanned versions of books
  • Records help locate copies that may be borrowed through local libraries

International Children’s Library

  • Search for books by genre, age level, length, keyword, by collection, and more
  • Many books in multiple languages
  • Open and read book  – no download
  • Create an account to set up a bookshelf if desired

GeoStories

  • Multimedia slideshow tours of places and topics
  • Dynamic maps show viewers where story takes place
  • Embed GeoStories in your website
  • Visit partner sites for more stories

Google Lit Trips

  • Connect with literary characters journeys via GoogleEarth
  • Pop up windows display media, links, and discussion starters
  • K-Higher Ed and new Special Projects

Your Next Read

  • Enter a title, author, or genre you like – get reader suggestions for others like it
  • Thumbs up or down to Agree/Disagree with reader recommendations
  • Contribute your recommendations
  • Suggested lists for children by age  groups

Weebly

  • Easily create a quality website
  • Drag and drop elements and easy text editor
  • Great for teacher websites – link to LMS
  • Easy for students to build sites

Kid Blog

  • Safe – teacher controls accounts in controlled community
  • Practice digital citizenship; create e-portfolios
  • Add digital media to blog posts
  • Check out Book Blabs

WolframAlpha

  • Computational search engine
  • Answers from internal peer reviewed knowledge base – not links to other sites
  • Factual data about topics, places, people,

Educlipper

  • Find user contributed teaching resources or share yours
  • Create groups/classes for collaboration or differentiation
  • Create assignments, portfolios and presentations

Kahoot

  • Game-based learning through asking and answering questions as competition
  • Easily create quizzes, discussions and surveys with the drag and drop editor
  • Project and have students join with any device
  • Game on!

 

Thank you for joining me and if you have an idea website I should include… please let me know. It might be part of what follows after 40! I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and to share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL,Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

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Part 2: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

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It is still summer time and I am sharing some of those websites I feel should be in every teacher’s toolbox! I have forty… maybe more… and I am sending out ten new ones in each post. This is post number two… remember I am picking these from thousands.  It is my way of saying happy summer!   First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is fully booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

Part 2: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

Gooru

  • K-12 library of Standards-aligned content collections
  • Videos, games, digital texts, and questions
  • Create your own or customize existing collections
  • Vetted by educators

TedEd

  • Library of Lessons – curated videos that amplify great lesson ideas
  • Filter searches by content, grade range and length of video
  • TED-Ed platform allows users to create lessons from TED and
  • You-Tube educational videos.

Hemingway

  • App analyzes writing samples
  • Analyzes readability level
  • Color coding of hard to read sentences, voice, parts of speech
  • Currently app only

Timer

  • Simple timer (10 seconds to 5 hours) with alert sounds
  • Clock displays real time (as set on computer)
  • Display clock and timer together

Remind

  • One-way messages to students and/or parents
  • Sender/Receiver phone numbers remain private
  • Broadcast special reminders, encouragement, schedule changes
  • Easily schedule messages to be sent later

Creative Commons Search

  • Custom gateway to materials that may be used, shared, or remixed
  • Includes images, media, music and video
  • User should still verify Creative Commons License
  • Add CC Search to browser toolbar

SweetSearch

  • Provides search results from 35,000 sites evaluated by research experts
  • Mission: to help educators “teach students how to use the Internet effectively, safely, and responsibly.”
  • Aims to help students locate credible resources faster

Open Ed

  • K-12 resource catalog of Common Core materials
  • Includes games, videos, assessments and courses
  • Integrates with popular learning management systems and offers its own

OER Commons

  • Curates digital learning materials to enrich teaching and learning
  • Browse by material type, grade, subject, or by collection provider
  • OpenAuthor lets teachers create their own open licensed education resources

MindMup

  • Organize thoughts with mind maps
  • Use multiple maps to tell a story
  • Export slideshow PDF for offline viewing
  • Extension through Google Drive allows real time collaboration

Thank you for joining me and if you have an idea website I should include… please let me know. It might be part of what follows after 40! I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and to share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL,Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

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Part 1: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

ws1

 

Welcome to a post and the summer of 2014… at least in the USA. I have a real treat for you in the next two weeks. I will be sharing some of those websites I feel should be in every teacher’s toolbox! I have forty… maybe more… and I am sending out ten new ones in each post. Remember I am picking these from thousands.  It is my way of saying happy summer!   First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. My summer is fully booked but it is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

Part 1: Forty Educational Websites To Put In Your Toolkit

Educanon

  • Create or find content video
  • Customize with questions
  • Interactive video for flipped or blended learning
  • Great for Formative Assessment and Differentiation

PBS Learning Media

  • Great library of videos and interactives
  • Search by grade, subject, or standards
  • Extensive PD Collection including:  Literacy…  STEM…  Get Your Tech On

Wordle

Tagxedo

Jing

  • Record short video tutorials (up to 5 minutes)
  • Share online via LMS and more
  • Great for flipped and blended learning

ClassTools

  • Create custom games, quizzes and activities
  • Great interactive online versions of some old standards  (Fishbone Diagram, Sandwich Organizer)
  • Can be posted to LMS or website

Read Write Think Interactives

  • Help students organize, summarize, and analyze, and write
  • Includes multi-level lesson plans that integrate each interactive
  • Students may save or print partial or completed interactive
  • Check out this write up on these interactives.

Socrative

  • Online student response system using laptops, tablets, smartphones
  • Multiple choice, T/F, open-ended quiz questions
  • Exit tickets
  • Results export to Excel

Answer Garden

  • Creative brainstorming or Classroom feedback
  • Modes allow for one or multiple answers
  • Teacher friendly information for moderating/monitoring
  • Export to Wordle or Tagxedo

ReadWorks

  • Comprehension lessons and units
  • Novel Study units in multiple genres and grade levels
  • Leveled reading passages with question sets
  • Aligned to CCSS and standards of all 50 states

Thank you for joining me and if you have an idea website I should include… please let me know. It might be part of what follows after 40! I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and to share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL,Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

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Ten Pointers Promoting Academics In Online Discussions.. Digital Citizenship Series

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Welcome to a post I am certain will help you, and many others, as you facilitate online discussion forums to promote real learning.   First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

Ten Pointers Promoting Academics In Online Discussions.. Digital Citizenship Series

By Michael Gorman at  (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com)

In the last post we discussed how online discussions can incorporate many ideas that enrich a blended classroom. You may wish to explore these ten ideas in the last post. In this week’s post I would like to emphasize how you might want to emphasize that needed academic emphasis in student online discussions. Remember that an online discussion is a powerful extension of learning that can go beyond the walls of your classroom.

When using online discussions with student be sure to keep your point of emphasis aimed at the content standards, 21st century skills, while moving up Blooms higher levels. Questions can be convergent for formative purposes, but also divergent to promote inquiry. Remember that the use of multimedia can promote academic standards while facilitating real and meaningful discussion. The teacher should model proper digital citizenship, constantly monitor student communication, and also provide responses  to various discussion threads. Equally important, the teacher should be aware and follow the District AUP (Acceptable Use Policy) and any website terms of use.

When first joining the world of student online discussions it can be often noted that the student conversation is not always highly academic and sometimes lacks rigorous thought. After all,  students have already learned to digitally communicate using social media and they transfer this past practice to the academic classroom. It is important that teachers facilitate proper online communication while promoting digital citizenship. Through proper guidance and digital education any classroom can discover the rich and meaningful opportunities that an online discussion can provide. Please feel free to use these ten ideas below and share with others.

1. Keep discussions to Bloom’s higher level topics including creating, evaluating, and synthesizing.

2. Use discussion as a formative assessment for checking both individual and group understanding. This does not mean it always has to be graded for accuracy… but more as a way for the teacher to plan. Many times in this method, the question maybe lower on Blooms Scale to show remembering and understanding.

3. A discussion can be graded, although it maybe best to grade for participation. In this manner the teacher may post and then ask students to reply to teacher post with a requirement of so many sentences. There could also be a requirement to comment to stated number of  other student posts. When grading be specific on requirements.

4. A class discussion is not a emulation of social media, it is an academic forum. This should be stated in the discussion question until it becomes acceptable classroom practice. and culture. Some things to keep in mind are the following.

  • Proper English grammar
  • Complete sentences
  • No use of text lingo (example; LOL”
  • Any copy and pasted resources or reference should be at least cited by name and link
  • Topic should be adhered to, no outside or side bar conversation
  • Proper spelling of words
  • Thoughts and ideas should be concise and to the point (do not ramble)
  • When stating positives and agreements be specific as to reasoning… keep away from Yearbook type comments
  • Exercise proper Digital Citizenship (see below)

5. Students should practice proper digital citizenship

  • Empathy for others should be practiced with an understanding of  an individual’s writing before commenting
  • No use of text lingo (example; LOL)
  • Proper peer critique should be emphasized with an emphasis on caring (example… do not be critical, instead use I wonder statements)
  • All comments should be academic (See above)
  • Do not use personal identifying information
  • No plagiarizing… give credit
  • There should be no bullying or put downs

6. Mix up media in discussions… do not always have them text based. Use documents, PDF files, movies, music, sound files, Power Points, website links, and images to promote the standards and concepts.

7. Keep on topic… try to provide discussions that will support the standards and 21st skills that you wish to emphasize and that will be assessed.

8. Use a rubric if providing a discussion for understanding. Make sure your students are aware and use the rubric when making any comments or replies. Possibly include the 21st century skills of Communication, Critical Thinking, Collaboration, and Creativity. Do not try to include all, and break these skills down to individual components. Example… instead of Creativity use one component such as divergent thinking.

9. As a teacher be sure to model by practicing what is required, while also commenting on what students write.

10. Encourage students to create their own discussions so they begin to own the process.

Thank you for joining me and if you have an idea involoving online discussions that you feel is important, please leave a comment or pass it on to me in an email. I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and to share with other educators.  As always , I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on to someone who will benefit.   To ensure you do not miss a future valuable post or other resource covering PBL,Digital Curriculum, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Discussion! – Mike (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference?  I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations.  Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. It is not to early to think about planning PD for the next school year …. dates are  already beginning to fill!

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