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Part 1: Forty Educational Websites For Your Summer 2015 Toolkit

2015_1

Welcome to a post and the summer of 2015… at least in the USA. I have a real treat for you in the coming 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 and I am trying to find those sites that are up and coming and might just be the next big edtech hit. You might also notice I am also including a few sites that have been around for awhile.  They include ones that I feel educators might want to be a little more aware of. I hope you enjoy and try some of these out durring the summer months. 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 – It is time to think about your school or conference 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 delivered hundreds of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page.  Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and fall dates for 2015 are now over half full.

Part 1: Forty Educational Websites For Your Summer 2015 Toolkit

3-D Gallery Generator

  • Build a museum with 10 exhibits.
  • Upload your own images or enter URLs.
  • Downloadable Help sheet can be used as student storyboard.

http://www.classtools.net/3D/

Blendspace

  • “Blend” lesson instruction & student response
  • Monitor/measure student understanding.
  • Flipping, PBL, and Differentiation.
  • Explore Teacher Resources, Gallery and Blog.

https://www.blendspace.com/

PowToon

  • “Brings awesomeness to your presentations.”
  • Create animated presentations.
  • “4Edu” version for teachers and students.
  • Basic version free.

https://www.powtoon.com

APPEd Review

  • In-depth reviews of 500 apps with screen shots
  • Instructional ideas, comprehensive rubric
  • Searchable by Operating System, Price, Subject/Grade.

http://appedreview.com/

Zaption

  • Add images, text, questions
  • Gallery of FREE content to copy or customize.
  • Laptop, tablet, iOS and works with most LMSs.
  • English, French, Spanish, and Hebrew
  • Sensitive to Copyright and Section 508 Accessibility.

http://www.zaption.com/

VideoNote.es

  • Notes automatically synchronized with video.
  • Share for Interactive Discussions or keep Private.
  • Integrates with Google Drive, works with YouTube, Vimeo, Khan Academy.
  • From Edlab @Teachers College Columbia U.

http://www.videonot.es/

Vialogues

  • Video + Dialogue (Asynchronous discussions)
  • Comments hyperlinked to video timeline.
  • “Manage” introductory info, add guiding questions, and polls.

https://vialogues.com/

Metta

  • Combine video content with captions & pictures.
  • Add polls and/or quizzes (responses recorded).
  • Mashups by teacher or students for presentations.
  • Free Basic Plan for 1 group (up to 30).

http://www.metta.io/

InstaGrok

  • Research with Concept Maps.
  • Visual interface shows connections.
  • Note-taking and journals writing feature.
  • Mobile app for Apple and Android.

http://www.instagrok.com

Prism

  • “Crowdsourced” interpretation of literary texts.
  • Highlight text to build visual representation.
  • “aesthetic provocations” invite further discussion.
  • Upload your own text and define categories for interpretation.

http://prism.scholarslab.org/

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 (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Coming Soon: Three Great Posts – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning, The Rest of the  40 Amazing Educational Websites, and More STEMtastic Resources. These are some wonderful posts you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info for Michael Gorman – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and am already more than half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

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Part 5…Beyond the Shine : Supporting Technology with the SAMR Model plus Ten Great Resource Sites

techshine_samr

Welcome to a series of posts that are dedicated to going beyond the shine of technology by examining ways to use digital tools to engage students in real learning. In this fifth post you will discover how careful examination of the verbs in a standard can help you find resources to assist in proper technology integration. You may want to click on the link below to the first, through fourth posts of this series. Be on the lookout for future posts entitled the ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning and also 40 great education sites to discover in 2015. First, to ensure you do not miss a valuable post 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 – It is time to think about your school or conference 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 delivered hundreds of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page.  Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and fall dates for 2015 are now over half full.

Beyond the Shine Series Articles

In this post I wish to go beyond the idea of finding the tech in the standards. Instead in this post it will be important to see how the technology is being integrated in a classroom. Not only should the technology support the standards, but proper integration of technology will ensure productive and effective technology use and integration in the 21st Century Classroom.. For this reason it is important to take a look at technology under the lens of the SAMR Model. You will find that looking at this model will provide avenues of going beyond the technology shine.
Introduction to SAMR

Transforming technology into a blended learning experience has become a necessity for those educators wanting to engage student centered learning in the 21st century classroom. While it is possible to create a successful and highly interactive student based learning experience without technology, it is technology that can amplify the learning experience. It must be remembered that amplification will have an effect on great educational pedagogy, but will also do the same for instruction that may not meet the goal. As teachers invite technology into the classroom it has become evident that as learners themselves, they go through formative steps as they become proficient in the blended experience.

Through the work of Dr. Ruben Puentedura, Ph. D. the SAMR Model (Substitution Augmentation Modification Redefinition) provides a wonderful lens to look at this progression. It must be understood that the goal is to create lessons that allow for the ability to facilitate learning opportunities that practice Redefinition. At the same time, it must be remembered that all of the stages allow for technology interaction and increased student engagement. This is sometimes not emphasized as teachers sometimes feel they must attempt to put all their lessons at the top tier of SAMR. There are times where simple Substitution is all that is needed and is most appropriate given the learning target. As educators become familiar with the SAMR Model it allows them to reflect and evaluate their technology integration practice while striving for powerful learning opportunities for their students. Keep in mind that learning activities can get blurred between the steps of SAMR. It must be remembered that educators are working on not only a progression, but also a best fit. The first two steps involve technology as an enhancement tool and the last two involve technology as a transformation tool.  Many times the steps between enhancement and transformation can take a bit of time as educators practice, reflect, and learn. In the space below you will find those important SAMR Steps.
Substitution – “Tech acts as a direct tool substitute, with no functional change”

SAMR defines substitution as a beginning level of technology integration.  At this stage technology replaces an activity that may have been done before using a possible analog or pre-analog resource. This is the very first stage of enhancing a lesson using technology.  A common example might include a student word processing a story rather than hand writing it. While it is a lower level form of integration, it still might be a wonderful use of the technology. Another example might be the teacher curating the curriculum for students using their LMS (Learning Management System). The teacher has worked hard at finding articles, reading lists, research links, and even You Tube videos on a various topics. In essence, the web is being used as a substitution for what may have been a prior resource list given to students. Once again, it is a wonderful start with some great learning opportunities, but it still is a substitution. According to Dr. Ruben R. Puentedura, the teacher is just using the technology to replace a resource list that could be used in the library. Keep in mind that this can be still very useful. Some questions in regards to going beyond Technology Shine may include:

  • Does the substitution of technology serve the learning target and the standards these targets reflect, or might it actually get in the way.
  • Did the technology substitution assist in student engagement and productivity allowing more time to be involved in curricular expectations?
  • What might have been gained in regards to student learning because of the substitution?
  • In regards to a balance between learning and time spent on standard, what statements can be made?

Augmentation – “Tech acts as a direct substitute tool, with functional improvement”

The next step moves one step up the ladder from Substitution. It is important to remember that this step is still at the enhancement level.  At this stage the technology has improved student learning by adding meaningful functionality that would have not been as possible without the technology integration. A common example includes how a word processing document provides students different tools (word count, thesaurus, and grammar checks). Perhaps students are using calculators or spreadsheets to solve a problem. It could be that students are researching, and the teacher directs students to current news events, blogs, or interpretations of the research by various authors. Students have the opportunity to compare and contrast viewpoints, view up-to-date information that may not be in the physical school library. They may even have the opportunity to participate in the comment section of a blog. While the line can be blurred between Substitution and Augmentation there appears to be a technology integration that allows for deeper learning. This can even lead to an increase in student engagement, rigor, and quality of work.    A teacher must reflect and recognize that the technology has added to the learning experience. They must determine if the overall learning has been improved because of the technology integration. Some questions in regards to going beyond Technology Shine may include:

  • Is the technology adding to the learning experience and curricular expectations?
  • Has overall learning has been improved because of the technology integration?
  • Are student more engaged and producing higher quality work that promotes the standards?
  • How might this use be a step above substitution and does in enhance the learning of the standard?

Modification – “Tech allows for significant task redesign”

At this stage the technology has the opportunity to change the look and feel of what students perform.  There really is a definite change in the lesson that may have started with an analog foundation. Transformation has begun! This step demands more reflection and work from the facilitating teacher. At the same time, Modification brings in the student opportunity to proceed up Bloom’s Taxonomy. A common example may include students authoring a group story in a Google Doc so that peer editing and collaboration can happen anytime and anyplace. Perhaps some images are added to the student writing in order to further engage the intended audience. A teacher may ask students to use advanced searching skills in order to find articles that contrast viewpoints from different counties. Taking this concept further, students compile their research collectively using a group inside of a bookmarking tool such as Diigo. A word cloud might be employed to study the meaning of an article or author’s writing. While students use traditional literary critique, a word cloud might provide a new analysis, such as a visual look at word frequency in a reading. Students might use a Google Form to collect and analyze data. In this method of data collection students may be able to survey larger, more diverse, and authentic populations. They may also employ a layer of tools in a spreadsheet to represent the data to an audience. Many times modification allows more student voice and the outcome may not be as prescribed. Some questions in regards to going beyond Technology Shine may include:

  • Does the technology allow for some project redesign that enhances the project while still accomplishing the learning objectives?
  • Could this, along with any other modifications, allow a lesson to advance to the next level?.
  • Is time spent using modification keeping the same timeline or less allowing for increased productivity?
  • Has this technological opportunity increased student voice and choice in the activity?

Redefinition – Tech allows for creation of new tasks that were previously inconceivable

At this stage the technology allows students to jump outside the original design box. This is much more than a redesign. It focuses on the employment of new tasks and learning opportunities..  While the teacher may initiate some of these, student voice and choice must also be employed.  A story could change into a picture book, a slide show, or even a movie. The audience could go beyond the school and include the community, state, county, or world.  Mentors could be in the virtual online world. Perhaps students are curating and creating their own content to be used by other students. Imagine research that allows for students to create their own search engine using Google Custom Search. The original standards remain with addition of new skills that circle around 21st century skills. The redesign is made possible because of the blending of the technology into the learning process eliminating the constraints and barriers of the physical classroom. At the same time, the technology might appear transparent to the learning process. Students become producers, creators, and innovators. They begin to own their own learning process. Some questions in regards to going beyond Technology Shine may include:

  • While proving additional possibilities, does the redefinition still serve the original standards and purpose?
  • What possibilities exist to increase the student ownership of learning?
  • Is it possible to assess skills the processing and 21st century skills brought about by redefinition?
  • What evidence can be provided to show that the technology is going beyond enhancement and providing a true transformation?

Conclusion

All educators must realize that a final goal of any classroom is redefinition. At the same time, there will be times when even the most proficient educators with technology conduct a task at the substitution level. Some educators like to compare this idea to not stepping up a ladder, but instead spending time in a swimming pool. When might one want to go to the deep end and at what point might a return to the shallow end be valuable and productive. It really comes down to the tool fitting the task and learning target. An understanding of the SAMR Model allows educators to reflect on their own progress while investigating ways to use educational technology in a useful and productive way. The SAMR Model allows all educators to view the steps they are taking down the road of technology enhancement toward true transformation. It is a wonderful and exciting journey of going beyong the technology shine.

Ten great SAMR Resources to Assist in Understanding the Model

  • Dr. Puentedura Blog – Why not read SAMR thoughts from the person who came up with the model. Dr. Puentedura provides important insight, reflections, and ideas.
  • Relating to Blooms – Once again learn from the SAMR creator, Dr. Puentedura, as he  provides this blog posted at Graphite showing relationships to SAMR and Blooms.
  • SAMR Model and 21st Century Skills – Explore an article that allows educators to look at the SAMR Model through the 21st century skill lens.
  • SAMR Model Example – Take a look at some great example relating SAMR to specific examples that educators can relate to.
  • K. Ward SAMR Discussions Example – Read about SAMR as related to online discussion examples.
  • SAMR… Teaching Above the Line – Discover a wonderful article that allows teachers to begin thinking of taking the SAMR steps.
  • Introduction to SAMR Model – Once again Common Sense Media provides an amazing video and information on the SAMR Model.
  • SAMR for Administrators – This is not just for administrators, but for all educators. This post at Edutopia provides some practical ideas for looking at SAMR.
  • Padagogy Wheel – What an amazing creation that takes apps and aligns them to apps… a must visit website to investigate and learn more from..
  • SAMR and Coffee – This post points out several blogs and videos that try to draw some analogies between coffee and SAMR… it might be your cup of coffee..

Thank you for joining me and I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and useful 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 for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Coming Soon: Three Great Posts – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning, 40 Amazing Educational Websites, More STEMtastic Resources, Beyond The Tech Shine… Verbs… these are some wonderful posts you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info for Michael Gorman – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and am already more than half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

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Part 4… Beyond the Technology Shine… Learning Targets plus 10 great Lesson Plan Resources

learning Targets

Welcome to a series of posts that are dedicated to going beyond the shine of technology by examining ways to use digital tools to engage students in real learning. In this fourth post you will discover how careful examination of the nouns and verbs in a standard can help you  write learning targets that will point to valuable resources. You may want to click on the link below to the first,  second and third posts of this series. Be on the lookout for future posts entitled the ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning and also 40 great education sites to discover in 2015. First, to ensure you do not miss a valuable post 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 – It is time to think about your school or conference 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 delivered hundreds of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page.  Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and fall dates for 2015 are now over half full.

Beyond the Shine Series Articles

In this post I would like to investigate how examining the nouns and verbs, as we did in the last few posts, allows an educator to write learning targets for their students.  These learning targets can then be used to search the internet for lesson plans that can make learning both engaging and relevant. In the last few posts we discovers nouns that could uncover OER (Open Education Resources) and verbs that could lead to important digital tools that allow for process development.

Learning Targets describe what students will know and be able to perform in relationship to the curricular standards. Proper activities and learning experiences aligned with the nouns and verbs of the standards provide opportunities for Learning Targets to be written.

Let’s take a look at the five steps from the first post of the series. The point of emphasis for this article is step number five below.

  1. Identify the standard
  2. Reflect on the standard
  3. Determine the content by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate nouns.
  4. Investigate the skills by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate verbs.
  5. Create Learning Targets demonstrating what students will be able to do.

In the preceding post of this series I provided the following standards and listed the nouns and verbs I thought might be important.  I have provided those example standards and the relevant nouns and verbs below.

Example Standards

  • Students will be able to research and record key facts involving the planets of the solar system.
  • Students will explain orbit, gravity, and gravitational pull.
  • Students will be able to collaborate on a presentation that provides what they have learned in their own words
  • Relevant Nouns – Planets, Solar System, Orbit, Gravity (OER Resources)
  • Relevant Verbs–   Research, Record, Explain, Collaborate (Digital Process Tools)

Examining the standards in this way allows the teacher can now reflect on content and process. It helps an educator understand  the important concepts and process skills students should walk away from a lesson with.  This content and process can now be written as Learning Targets.  Providing Learning Targets to students in a language they understand allows for ownership of learning to occur.  It is this ownership that can make the learning experience powerful. Using the above standards with an emphasis on the included nouns and verbs  suggests the following student centered Learning Targets.

  • I can research and find facts about the planets and our solar system solar system
  • I can identify and describe in my own words characteristics of the planets and our solar system
  • I can explain the forces of gravity and orbit
  • I can work with others to create a presentation demonstrating our knowledge of the solar system

With these Learning Targets in hand, it is now possible to search the internet for lessons that will allow these targets to become a learning reality. Remember that the teacher must put a focus on locating lessons that include technology. Equally important, the technology must provide focus back on the standard. It is also important to emphasize those nouns that can lead to great OER content as described in Post Two, while determining how the verbs will supply the correct digital processing tool as described in Post Three. Please feel free to visit the links provided below to help identify possible lessons to align with important Learning Targets. I wish you the very best as you go beyond the shine of new technology in your search for learning that  really does meet the standards.(Please Note: You will see that many of these links will land you on the resource page and not the home page. In some cases you  may need to sign up for an account).

10 Great Internet Sites …. From Learning Targets to Lessons

  • Graphite Lesson Flow– Formerly known as App Flow, Graphite’s lesson Flow from Common Sense media allows teachers to incorporate the very best in digital tools, while highlighting their pedagogical insight. Watch their video to learn more about Lesson Flows or make your own and share it by clicking “Create your own lesson flow” when you visit the site.
  • Gooru– Browse thousands of K-12 collections made by teachers, or search over 16M resources. Best of all, contribute your own while you share and learn from others. Explore Gooru’s ability to provide lessons with formative assessment and feedback.
  • Learn Zillion – This site has some wonderful vetted lessons. First you must become a member… which is free. Then visit the resource area and do a search. You will note some lessons are free and some may have a small cost.
  • Blendspace – While Blendspace is all about the ability to create lessons in under five minutes, I am pointing you to another amazing area in Blendspace. At the Blendspace Gallery you will be able to find valuable lessons already prepared and ready for you to use. While you are there, create and share some of your own possibilities!
  • Nearpod – Some of you may already be aware of amazing way teachers can build a lesson in Nearpod and turn it into an  interactive classroom experience. Did you also know that Nearpod has a wonderful collection of lessons? Some are free and others may come with a small fee. It is worth the trip!
  • Share My Lesson – Welcome to a place where over 300,000 amazing lessons can be found.Share My Lesson pledges that their members can download and share user-generated resources free of charge forever. Feel free to find new lessons and also share your own.Content uploaded by a user always remains the property of that user.
  • PBS Learning Media– While best know for some amazing videos, PBS Learning Media also has some wonderful lesson plan resources and interactive. You will also be amazed at the engaging teacher tools for the 21st century classroom.
  • Better Lessons – This is a site that links to English and Math Common Core along with Next Generation Science Standards. Here you will find over 10,000 lessons written by educational professionals. The link takes you to the resource section.
  • OER Commons – This Open Educational Resource site was already mentioned in the post that emphasized content and nouns. It must also be pointed out that this site also has some great lesson ideas from multiple open education providers..
  • Lesson Plan Data Base – This is a very simple search engine data base that I built and house at my site. You will find that it links up to lesson plans in all subject areas. It uses many of the same strong educational sites that Thinkfinity (which is no longer available as a search engine) once used. Be sure to use the search area under the words “Lesson Search”. Make sure you check it out.

Finding the technology in the standards can open a whole new world of possibilities. Whether it be emphasizing the nouns of content, the verbs of process, or seeing how they all fit together in learning targets. I do hope you have found some valuable ideas and resources. Perhaps you may now look at standards in a whole new way!  Finding that technology in a standard allows you to go beyond the shine… and into an exciting world of relevant and engaging learning!

Thank you for joining me and I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and useful 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 for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Coming Soon: Three Great Posts – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning, 40 Amazing Educational Websites, More STEMtastic Resources, Beyond The Tech Shine… Verbs… these are some wonderful posts you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info for Michael Gorman – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and am already more than half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

Leave a comment

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Part 3… Beyond the Technology Shine… Content Standard Verbs and Blended Learning Possiblities

verbs

Welcome to a series of posts that are dedicated to going beyond the shine of technology by examining ways to use digital tools to engage students in real learning. In this third post you will discover how careful examination of the verbs in a standard can help you find resources to assist in proper technology integration. You may want to click on the link below to the first and second posts of this series. Be on the lookout for future posts entitled the ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning and also 40 great education sites to discover in 2015. First, to ensure you do not miss a valuable post 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 – It is time to think about your school or conference 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 delivered hundreds of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page.  Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and fall dates for 2015 are now over half full.

Beyond the Shine Series Articles

Part 3… Beyond the Technology  Shine… Content Standard Verbs and Blended Learning Possibilities

In this post I would like to investigate how examining the verbs in curricular standards can help teachers investigate ways to integrate technology to promote curricular content understanding. It all begins with something that has been around for quite a while. In the last post I examined how  finding the nouns in a standard will help identify important content that student must become familiar with. Technology allows the 21st century classroom to use this awareness of the nouns to connect with free resources on the internet known as OER (Open Education Resources).  Feel free to read about 25 of these amazing resources from the last post. While the nouns point out the content, it is the verbs that bring meaning and deeper learning to the standards. Let’s talk a closer look at what new action these verbs bring to learning.

I provided five steps in the first post which you can read about in a little further depth here. The point of emphasis for this article is step number four below.

  1. Identify the standard
  2. Reflect on the standard
  3. Determine the content by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate nouns.
  4. Investigate the skills by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate verbs.
  5. Create Learning Targets demonstrating what students will be able to do.

In the first post of this series I provided the following standards and listed the verbs I thought might be important.  I have provided those example standards and the relevant verbs below.

Example Standards

  • Students will be able to research and record key facts involving the planets of the solar system.
  • Students will explain orbit, gravity, and gravitational pull.
  • Students will be able to collaborate on a presentation that provides what they have learned in their own words

Relevant Verbs –   Research, Record, Explain, Collaborate

By examining the appropriate verbs in the standard it is possible to identify important skills and processes that students should learn about and demonstrate competency of. This allows learning to go beyond Bloom’s basic level of remembering.  The verbs found in the curriculum standards promote the 4 C’s (communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking) along with Bloom’s higher levels, (understanding, analyzing, evaluating, and creating). By identifying the verbs found in the standards it is possible for an educator to discover and implement free interactive resources that can be found on the web.

An examination of the verbs found in standards provides the following possibilities for the integration of technology in today’s technology rich classroom.

Finding the right tool to match the verb can take a bit of research. It is also important to gauge students’ age and ability while aligning it with the district AUP (Acceptable Use Policy) and the each tool’s Terms of Use. I have included some resources below that can be helpful in finding the right tool for processes. While the nouns can help locate the important content that can be supported with OER (Open Education Resources) , it is the verbs that will take your students into Bloom’s higher order while conquering the 4C’s. Take a moment to check out the wide assortment of possibilities found in the below links. You will discover a whole new world of technology ready to put those content standard verbs into some exciting and engaging action while going beyond the technology shine.

10 Sites To Explore Bloom and Related Verbs

An important side note – While integrating the web with today’s 21st century learning experience is essential, each child’s safety and security must be a number one priority.  Any websites and tools used in the classroom should be thoroughly examined and vetted by educators. While many sites, along with COPA rules, designate the age of 13 as the end of necessitating parental permission, it is encouraged that districts go a step further and ask both parent awareness and permission for all of our students.  Parents should be aware and have the opportunity to read a site’s Terms of Use, and to be a partner with their child(ren) in exploring the web and its many opportunities. Schools should promote proper digital citizenship and internet safety in  classrooms and encourage this to be reinforced at home. Check out my five important points educators should consider when using interactive web tools.

The Big Five Before Using A Tool

  • Examine Your LMS (Learning Management System)
  • Read Terms and Privacy of interactive web tool being used
  • Check school district AUP (Acceptable Use Policy) and school administration
  • Involve Parents
  • Incorporate Digital Citizenship

As you can see, the standards are an important part of technology integration. As educators examine the many relevant nouns and verbs  found in the standards they are able to focus on real learning. It is this focus that allows today’s 21st century classroom to go beyond the technology shine!

Thank you for joining me and I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and useful 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 for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Coming Soon: Three Great Posts – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning, 40 Amazing Educational Websites, More STEMtastic Resources, Beyond The Tech Shine… Verbs… these are some wonderful posts you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info for Michael Gorman – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and am already more than half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

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Part 2… Beyond the Technology Shine… Content Standard Nouns Meet 25 Free OER Education Resources

Nouns_OER

Welcome to a series of posts that are dedicated to going beyond the shine of technology by examining ways to use digital tools to engage students in real learning. In this second post you will discover how careful examination of the nouns in a standard can help you find resources to assist in proper technology integration. You may want to click on the link below to the first of this series. Be on the look out for future posts entitled the ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning and also 40 great education sites to discover in 2015. First, to ensure you do not miss a valuable post 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 school or conference 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 delivered hundreds of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page.  Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and fall dates for 2015  are now over half full.

Past…  Beyond the Shine Series Articles

 

Part 2… Beyond the Technology Shine… Content Standard Nouns Meet 25 Free OER Education Resources

In this post I would like to investigate how examining the nouns in curricular standards helps teachers investigate ways to integrate technology in order to facilitate student understanding of curricular content. It all really begins with something that has been around for quite awhile. You probably know them as the curriculum standards.

A portion or foundation of a curriculum is the standards. Standards make up the general knowledge of what educators want students to know. Standards are a great starting point and through careful examination, exact content and skills can be aligned with technology integration. Simply stated, examining or unpacking a standard allows a teacher to see what a child will know and be able to do. It can also help educators determine what digital resources may work best to help support learning. Now, the phrase “unpacking the standards’ may not bring out the smile you want from teachers. For this reason I will refer to it as finding the technology in the standard. Let’s take a look!

I provided five steps in the last post which you can read about in a little further depth here. The point of emphasis for this article is item number three below.

  1. Identify the standard
  2. Reflect on the standard
  3. Determine the content by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate nouns.
  4. Investigate the skills by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate verbs.
  5. Create Learning Targets demonstrating what students will be able to do.

In the last post I provided the following standards and listed the nouns I thought might be important:

Example Standards

  • Students will be able to research and record key facts involving the planets of the solar system.
  • Students will explain orbit, gravity, and gravitational pull.
  • Students will be able to collaborate on a presentation that provides what they have learned in their own words

Relevant Nouns –   planets, solar system. orbit, gravity, and gravitational pull

By examiing the content appropriate nouns in the standard it is possible to identify key concepts that students should learn about and show an understanding of. While all areas of Blooms can be applied for deep understanding, a good starting point might be the areas of Blooms regarding understanding and remembering. Please note that the higher levels of Blooms can help fosters learning in  these two areas. By idenifying content appropriate nouns it is possible to search for both resources available at a school district along with some amazing free resources found on the web.

That’s right, the identified nouns can give you keywords that will allow you to search a wonderful world of OER (Open Education Resources) on the internet. You will find a wide assortment ready for you as you begin to design lessons, activities, or even a textbook! Best of all, they are free and contain quality resources. Take a moment to check out the wide assortment of possibilities that you can mix into brand new possibilited. Remember OER resources provide curriculum that:

  • Makes learning more authentic by giving the teacher the ability to localize learning
  • Contains formative learning and assessment opportunities
  • Is based on standards
  • Is often amplified by technology
  • Vetted by organizations and individuals
  • Can be used in whole or in parts
  • Provides free content… it fits the budget and provides opportunities to spend money on needed resources and money that allows for teacher creation in the district
  • Can provide differentiation and allow educator to adapt to their students’ needs
  • WIll provide a foundation for further learning opportunities
  • Is flexible for mixing with other resources

A Listing Of 25 OER (Open Education Resource Sites)

How might your identification of the curriculum standard nouns along with OER  fit into a classroom ? You will never know until you begin your exploration. The links below provide you an opportunity to learn more about Open Education Resources. Please enjoy and share with others. Send me some others that I should include in a future post.

The Index of Open Educational Resources – Open Educational Resources come in many shapes and sizes. This partial list of sources introduces the scope of OER and the organizations cultivating its increasingly vital role in opening higher education up to the greatest number of people worldwide.

Open Education Resources – Talk about big, this network brings together 44,129 OER tools for sharing curriculum. It also provides a host of world and news and training on the amazing  arena of open education!  Great place to investigate whether you have an hour or a month!

CK12.org – Imagine creating your own textbook. Better yet, think about a wonderful base of a textbook that is already created, vetted, and matched to standards. Now, what if you could add to it, localize it, widen or deepen scope, and individualize it for your students’needs? Best of all, what if you could now make it your own and share it with your students? It is all possible with  CK-12. This wonderful OER makes it easy for teachers to assemble their own textbooks. Content is mapped to a variety of levels and standards including common core. Teachers can start from scratch or build from anything in the FlexBooks library.

Curriki – What happens when classroom teachers from every country in the world take part in a global community of sharing curriculum and best practices?  You can imagine that teachers are empowered to create extraordinary learning experiences for their students. As Curriki states, “Barriers to equal access to education begin to lift—geography and politics become immaterial. And the economy benefits from a highly educated population.” That’s the basis of Curriki, a nonprofit K-12 global community for teachers, students, and parents to create, share, and find free learning resources that enable true personalized learning. It is their mission that free and equal access to the best curriculum materials is possible. Take some time and explore how Curriki is leading the way.

SAS Curriculum Pathways – Actually a resources from one of my first blogs and has it come a long way! Year after year, SAS Curriculum Pathways earns numerous awards for educational technologies. It has also earned the support of teachers, students, and parents across the nation. The approach is innovative, but the goals are traditional. Teachers, developers, designers, and other specialists clarify content in the core disciplines. SACS than targets content difficult to convey with conventional methods. This includes topics where doing and seeing provide information and encourage insights in ways that textbooks cannot. As stated on the website, “The products make learning more profound and efficient, not simply more entertaining.” Discover this special place where  audio, visual, and interactive components all reinforce the educational objectives identified by teachers

Concord Consortium – What an amazing place for those individuals working in STEM Education.  At Concord Consortium you can help your students learn with hundreds of interactive, research-based resources covering a huge variety of science, engineering, and math topics. You will note that many activities let the teacher see assessment results after student completion of an activity. This allows for outstanding formative learning and assessment which makes alignment with lessons quick, easy, and rewarding!

International Children’s Library – At the ICL educators can  search for books by genre, age level, length, keyword, by collection, and more. Many books are in multiple languages which fits into world language instruction. All students have to do is open and read the book… no download needed. It is even possible to create an account to set up a bookshelf if desired

Wikipedia –  Not only does Wikipedia have awesome vetted content, it also has a way educators can make their own books with Wikipedia Content. These books can be distributed in numerous digital content, or printed as hard copy. It is a great way to put significant content on any LMS. For articles with easier reading possiblities check out Simple English Wikipedia… and yes it is still possible to make a free book.

FreeReading (pk-3) is a free, high-quality, open-source reading program addressing literacy development for grades K-3. Leveraging the collective wisdom of researchers, teachers, reading coaches, and other education and industry professionals, FreeReading provides a high-quality, cost-effective alternative to static materials. By establishing a foundation of hundreds of research-based lessons and materials that users can download and use for free, FreeReading has created the framework for intervention programs supporting K-6 literacy. The collective wisdom within FreeReading is invaluable and can be more beneficial than any one reading program..

MERLOT – This is an organization that states its mission, “Putting Educational Innovations Into Practice.” At this site you will find peer reviewed online teaching and learning materials. Share advice and expertise about education with expert colleagues. Best of all you can be recognized for your contributions to quality education. Take some time to take a look!

Connexions – As stated in the title… an awesome place to connect with free and open source lessons! This site allows you to view and share educational material made of small knowledge chunks called modules. These chunks can be organized as courses, books, reports, etc. Anyone may view or contribute:

  • authors create and collaborate
  • instructors rapidly build and share custom collections
  • learners find and explore content

Open Course Library – A collection of high quality, free-to-use courses that teachers can download and use for teaching and learning. All content is stored in Google docs. This  makes  it easy to access, browse and download for use anytime, anywhere, regardless of connection.

Wisconsin Online Learning Objects – It is so true, learning objects add flexibility to the teaching and learning experience. In this site teachers have the opportunity to use learning objects when teaching a basic concept, applying concepts in “real world” applications, checking and testing true learning, providing understanding through simulation, and giving essential remedial instruction.

Vision Learning – This organization has  developed a set of peer-reviewed materials for learning science including modular readings, interactive multimedia, and a glossary. Best of all, it is available for free on the web in both English and Spanish. Note that as emphasized in the Next Generation Science Standards, Vision Learning emphasizes science as a process, not just a collection of facts. You will find that these resources can be used individually by anyone and can also be combined and customized within online classrooms by teachers.

Community College Consortium for OER – The Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources (CCCOER) is a combined effort involving individual community colleges, regional and statewide consortia, the Open Courseware Consortium,  the American Association for Community Colleges, the League for Innovation in the Community Colleges, and many other educational partners. The mission is  to develop and use open educational resources,  open textbooks, and open courseware. It is the desire of CCCOER to expand access to higher education and improve teaching and learning.

NROC – Take a moment to visit a place that truly rocks! You will find it at The National Repository of Online Courses (NROC). Here you will discover  a growing library of high-quality online course content for students and faculty in higher education, high school and Advanced Placement.  For all of you Hoosiers… NROC is provided to you free in the state of Indiana by the DOE.

Flat World Knowledge – This is a website that is authored by  the industry’s top authors. These textbooks are helping improve teaching and learning at more than 2,500 leading colleges and universities worldwide.

Hippocampus – This is a project of the Monterey Institute for Technology and Education (MITE). The goal of HippoCampus is to provide high-quality, multimedia content on general education subjects to high school and college students free of charge. If this fits in your budget than be sure to visit a discover a wide selection of excellent lessons, inter actives, and activities.

Georgia Virtual – You will find a wonderful collection of resources from the Peach State. The content available on this Shared Resources Website is available for anyone to view.  Courses are divided into modules and are aligned with the Georgia Performance Standards.

Moodle Share – MoodleShare is a community of Moodlers sharing their Moodles, Moodle Sites, and Moodle Lessons.

Moodle Exchange – Shares Moodle courses and other content useful for Moodle teachers.

Open Source Physics Project –  Physics teachers will measure a great equation of material. This wide range of curriculum resources both involve and engage students in physics, computation, and computer modeling.

California Learning Resource Network Digital Initiative – Take a moment to review results from all three phases of the Digital Textbook Initiative are listed separately in this report. Each link will take you to the full CLRN textbook review. While digital textbooks were reviewed for their alignment with the content standards, California’s Social Content Review criteria were only applied during Phase Three. Districts, schools, and individuals planning to take advantage of these books are reminded to conduct their own reviews to determine whether these resources meet their needs.

Khan Academy – One cannot forget the Khan Academy. The Khan Academy states a desire to provide “free world-class education for anyone anywhere.” Perhaps the academy is best known for its collection of over  3,000 videos covering K-12 math and some topics in science, history, business, art history and test preparation. Please note that Khan is going beyond Math. There are also more than 300 practice modules contained in the Khan Knowledge Map. This map orders the learning  modules by concepts.. Educators and students can view a wide variety of data in regards to student progress.

SmartHistory -(K-12)  Smarthistory at Khan Academy is the leading open educational resource for art history. They make high-quality introductory art history content freely available to anyone, anywhere. Smarthistory is a platform for the discipline where art historians contribute in their areas of expertise and learners come from across the globe. We offer nearly 500 videos and these are being translated into dozens of languages

Thank you for joining me and I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and useful 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 for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Coming Soon: Three Great Posts – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning, 40 Amazing Educational Websites, More STEMtastic Resources, Beyond The Tech Shine… Verbs… these are some wonderful posts you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info for Michael Gorman – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and am already more than half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

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Part 1…Beyond the Shine : Finding the Technology In The Standard

techstandard

Welcome to a series of posts that are dedicated to going beyond the shine of technology by examining ways to use digital tools to engage students in real learning. In this particular post you will discover how careful examination of the standard is essential in proper technology integration.  Be on the look out for future posts entitled the ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning and also 40 great education sites to discover in 2015. First, to ensure you do not miss a valuable post 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 school or conference 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 delivered hundreds of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page.  Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and fall dates for 2015  are now over half full.

Past…  Beyond the Shine Series Articles

Part 1…Beyond the Shine : Authentic Technology Integration and Content Standards

I remember when I first started using digital  technology in the classroom. I was in awe of the amazing Apple Classic and programs such as Claris Works and Hyper Card. In fact, I tried to find anyway I could to make this new technology fit the curriculum. Students were so engaged with programs such as Oregon Trail and Lemonade Stand that teachers found ways to make them fit, regardless of the standards. It was 1980 something and computers had finally entered the classroom. Many times it was one computer and thirty-five students, and everyone was being mesmerized by the shine of new technology. I may have forgotten a standard or two, possible even over taught the technology at the expense of some content. It may have even been science class, but somehow we were all on the Oregon Trail… after all there must have been some wildflowers along the way!  The lure and brightness of the Apple Classic  Computer was just to captivating. I was caught in the shine of an amazing new device.

Fast forward to 2015 and one will find many schools replacing their analog tools of the past with a new digital device. Many times this takes on the focus of a “one to one” program. Visions are acquired and missions are written describing how this amazing new device will change the classroom. There is always a great deal of focus on the programs and applications that will change learning. An image is created of students learning and engaging with this new technology throughout the school day. The excitement grows and the shine becomes brighter until it is soon discovered that this amazing new tool is really only… a device. What comes next? Perhaps the most exciting stage, exploring the real possibilities that technology can bring to learning. Let’s call it the pedagogy, or process that allows classrooms to go beyond the shine.

In this post I would like to investigate how examining the curricular standards helps teachers investigate ways to integrate technology in order to facilitate student understanding of curricular content. It all really begins with something that has been around for quite awhile. You probably know them as the curriculum standards.

A portion or foundation of a curriculum is the standards. Standards make up the general knowledge of what educators want students to know. Standards are a great starting point and through careful examination, exact content and skills can be aligned with technology integration. Simply stated, examining or unpacking a standard allows a teacher to see what a child will know and be able to do. It can also help educators determine what digital resources may work best to help support learning. Now, the phrase “unpacking the standards’ may not bring out the smile you want from teachers. For this reason I will refer to it as finding the technology in the standard. Let’s take a look!

Finding the Technology in the Standard

I have actually broken it down into five tasks or steps. You may even wish to practice by applying each step below  using a standard from your curriculum.  As you go through the process it is important to keep focused on the task of “finding the technology and examining” … there will be ample opportunity later to think about specific lessons, activities, and resources.

Five Tasks (steps)… 

  1. Identify the standard (sometimes referred to as a Power Standard which would be broken down to specific grade level)
  2. Reflect on the standard… if possible collaborate with others (What does the standards mean, why are we teaching this, what should students know, what should students be able to do, how does it apply to students at my grade level, where might it stand on a Depth of Knowledge Chart or Bloom’s Taxonomy)
  3. Determine the content by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate nouns.(This will help you determine content and allow you to determine what is appropriate for your level of students. Later we will examine digital resources that will align with these nouns or content.)
  4. Investigate the skills by reviewing the standard and circling the appropriate verbs. (This will allow you to determine the appropriate skills  to be practiced by students. This can be aligned to Depth of Knowledge, Blooms, and/or 21st century 4 C’s. Later we will be able to explore interactive technology that will help students learn and also demonstrate knowledge as seen in these verbs.)
  5. Create Learning Targets demonstrating what students will be able to do. (This is done through reflection and listing of verbs and nouns. The nouns allow us to state what students will know, and the verbs allow us to see what students will be able to perform or do. Digital applications and resources will blend together wonderful classroom opportunities that use these nouns and verbs to reveal the standards.)

Let me provide an example below…. note the standards

  • Students will be able to research and record key facts involving the planets of the solar system.
  • Students will explain orbit, gravity, and gravitational pull.
  • Students will be able to collaborate on a presentation that provides what they have learned in their own words

Relevant Nouns –  research,  planets, solar system. orbit, gravity, and gravitational pull

Relevant Verbs – explain , collaborate , presentation

Learning Targets for students:

  • I can research and explain my findings on planets and their relationship to the solar system
  • I can collaborate with others to create a presentation
  • I can present with others to demonstrate our our learning and understanding

At this stage it is important to look at the nouns, verbs, and learning targets in order to determine where the technology aligns. The nouns could point to numerous OER (Open Educational Resource) sites available on the internet. The verbs may point to numerous Web 2.0 tools and apps. Looking at the standards and applying this “find the tech” filter allows technology to integrate with the expected learning, rather than possibly just shine right through the learning. In the upcoming articles in this series I will focus on wonderful internet content resource sites that you should to get to know as you identify and apply the nouns. I will also  point out collections of apps and Web 2.0 tools that help support the verbs. You will also discover great lesson plans collections that can be used to accomplish some of those learning targets. I do hope this provides you a reason to return and be part of the 21centuryedtech Learning Community.  Please remember that the best way to avoid the technology shine is to focus on standards while you put students, not devices, at the center of learning. As you emphasize standards and students you will find there are so many amazing opportunities for learning….  beyond the Oregon Trail!

Thank you for joining me and I hope you found this information something you can use in your school and useful 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 for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. Have a great week… enjoy the Websites! – Mike (https://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/

Coming Soon – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning… a series you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and am already half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

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Teacher Appreciation Post: It’ True!.. I Teach Because I Can’t Do Anything Else

teacher

Happy upcoming 2015 Teacher Appreciation Week! I wish to share with you one of my favorite annual  postings that I dedicate to  an amazing world of educators. I hope you find this reflection one that you will continue to enjoy and share with others!   Also, please take a moment to subscribe to this blog by RSS or email and  join me on twitter at mjgormans . I have some great posts coming your way involving PBL, STEM, tech integration, and a continuing series on Professional Learning Communities!  Most of all, thanks for being one of those over 25,000 visitors a month and over 10,000 subscribers.  I would appreciate it if you pass this special post on to others through and email or a retweet!  Also, remember that I can come to your conference or school district and provide engaging authentic and purposeful professional development . See booking info and please contact me anytime at (mjgormans@gmail.com). Thanks so much.  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 over half full for next fall.

It’ True!: I Teach Because I Can’t Do Anything Else! – Michael Gorman – (21centuryedtech.wordpress.com)

Ok, so it’s true! I have spent nearly thirty-eight years in education because I cannot do anything else! In fact, while I travel around the country providing professional development involving all sorts of exciting educational possibilities I also still work at my school district providing learning experiences for students and educators. The idea of not being able to do anything else actually is something I have recently learned,  something I did not know  when I  presented my very first classroom lesson! I actually  began my undergraduate career in the College of Business with an eye on marketing. In the early stages of my teaching career I became licensed to sell securities with the idea of becoming rich!  Little did I know that because I could only teach, I would find richness beyond monetary wealth! I dedicate this list of reasons to all of those great educators who teach, because they cannot do anything else! Again please retweet and share with all of our colleagues that really can’t do anything else! Most of all enjoy the week and know that you are appreciated! – Mike

The List

I can’t be a banker or work in the financial business because while I might enjoy counting money and financial growth, I would rather count and measure the success of my students.

I can’t be a doctor or dentist because because while I enjoy seeing people smile as they leave and are healed, I get even more satisfaction if I see a smile when they first sit down.

I can’t be a professional athlete because while I do enjoy competition, I get even more satisfaction coaching young people to play each game with honor, integrity, and respect.

I can’t be a computer programmer because while creating new digital applications is exciting, finding ways to integrate technology to inspire real learning is rewarding.

I can’t work in agriculture or landscaping because while supplying food and natural beauty is appreciated by all, I enjoy planting seeds of life-long learning knowing that it will nourish one’s life.

I can’t work as a cook or chef because while I appreciate the art in a great meal, I most enjoy finding just the right ingredients that allow for a child’s success.

I can’t work in sales or marketing because even though I have learned from their great people skills, I would rather sell students on their abilities and possibilities.

I can’t be a pilot even though I appreciate them as I travel to new places, as I would rather facilitate young people as they climb in altitude and arrive at new destinations.

I can’t be an artist despite my appreciation for the beauty they bring, as I have found that my art is the ability to inspire and nurture children as they discover their innate abilities.

I can’t be a scientist or inventor because, while I am aware of the great advances they bring, I wish to create  innovative learning experiences that always end in success.

I could go on and on! As you can see, I really do appreciate all of the other professions and realize there are so many more I can’t do. After all, as teachers we really are preparing students for what they will do best in the world. Possibly in the future those we teach will not be able to do anything else, because we have assisted them them in becoming the very best at what they do!  As I continue my journey I have expanded my teaching horizon and understand that genuine educators, whether they be teachers, administrators, or educational leaders, continue to teach and inspire others, because they really can’t do anything else.

A  big shout out to all  educators on a very special week! . Thanks for joining me on another journey dedicated to learning in the 21st Century! As always I invite you to follow me on Twitter (@mjgormans), I will return the favor and we can teach each other! I also encourage you to sign up for this blog by email or RSS.  I invite you to share this posts with others through email or a retweet!  Thanks for your visit and know that I will keep  sharing, teaching, and facilitating all learners, after all, I can’t do anything else! – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Coming Soon – The ABC’s of PBL and Deeper Learning… 40 Great Tech Sites for 2015… Going Beyond the Technology Shine… a collection of three series of posts you will not want to miss. Sign Up Now

Booking Info – Check out my Booking Page… Please contact me soon if you have an interest. I am almost booked through August and the schedule is already over half full for fall of 2015 – Mike

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