Digital: Divide & Conquer: I love Projects. Geometrocity, the City Made of Math. I'm just going to throw this out there, "I love projects".
It doesn't matter if it's reading, math, science, whatever--I just love projects and project based learning. Giving students a large scale (or long-scale) project, seeing them attack problems, deciding where to start, and/or working within a group is one of the best things we can do as teachers (I don't have any data to back that last statement up). Yes, it takes a lot of work to make sure students are progressing and making appropriate progress--but it's what we do.Let me clarify this a little more: I love projects that take place in the classroom. I don't always trust projects that go home then come back a little too perfect. Yes, your parents can get an "A" but did the kid even do anything? "We also need to bring back science fairs," I scream as a step of my soapbox. If you're looking to incorporate more project based learning opportunities in your class, might I suggest trying out Geometrocity: A City Made of Math.
53 Ways to Check for Understanding. What About the “P” In Your B.Y.O.D.? – Blogging Through the Fourth Dimension. The final quarter of last year, our classroom was a limited B.Y.O.D. zone, meaning yes, bring your own device but check it at the door unless we had a purpose for it.
I instituted this because I felt we were getting distracted, myself included, we were having a hard time resisting the instant temptations that our smartphones seem to provide for us. So we left them out of the room and the students were just fine with it. I was too. In fact, there were times where I knew that our conversations, our reflections, our thinking traveled to deeper levels because we did not have a device nearby to distract. Yet, I felt like I had taking the easy way out. The beauty of students with devices is not just the instant access to information, but the ability to give them a voice even if we are not discussing. A few ideas so far for the purpose part are: (For students with no devices we will have access to Chromebooks to do some of these things. ) An ongoing TodaysMeet backchannel. Like this: Icebreakers that Rock. We’re coming up fast on the beginning of another school year.
That means a new batch of students to get to know, students who need to be made comfortable in your classroom, and who need to get to know each other. It’s essential to start building relationships with your students right from the start. And how to accomplish this? Icebreakers. I planned to create a nice big post with dozens of icebreaker ideas you could choose from. They require students to take massive social risks with people they barely know. So I have scrapped my plan to curate good icebreakers from the Internet. In my own classrooms, with middle school, high school, and college students, I have played all three of these games with great success. Each of these will likely sound familiar to you, although the names may not be exactly what you’ve known them as.
Blobs and Lines Here are some sample prompts you can use for this game: Concentric Circles Do you play any sports? This or That Sample questions for This or That: 30 Techniques to Quiet a Noisy Class. One day, in front 36 riotous sophomores, I clutched my chest and dropped to my knees like Sergeant Elias at the end of Platoon.
Instantly, dead silence and open mouths replaced classroom Armageddon. Standing up like nothing had happened, I said, "Thanks for your attention -- let's talk about love poems. " I never used that stunt again. After all, should a real emergency occur, it would be better if students call 911 rather than post my motionless body on YouTube. 8 Top Tips for Highly Effective PD. Highly effective classrooms can result from highly effective professional development.
Recent research (Butler et al., 2004) has shown that effective professional development includes creating classroom content, modeling techniques for teachers to use in their classrooms, and feedback on lessons (Harris, Graham, and Adkins, 2015). It's not enough to teach the right things to your teachers -- you have to teach your teachers in the right way. Here are some top tips for delivering highly effective PD to your teachers. 1. Use What You Are Teaching If a method of teaching works, that method should be used for teaching the teachers in your PD sessions. 2. The best PD classes had us teachers create lesson plans that we could use within two weeks of completing that class. 3. Then, using a rubric created for the class, we would try out the lesson we'd created in our PD session less than two weeks ago and receive feedback from a trained administrator or a peer.