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Flexible Seating and Student-Centered Classroom Redesign

Flexible Seating and Student-Centered Classroom Redesign
I remember exactly where I was when I had a watershed moment that changed me as a teacher forever. In fact, it inspired my EdSurge column, Why the 21st-Century Classroom May Remind You of Starbucks. I was working on my TEDx presentation at my local Starbucks and, looking around, I realized that everyone seemed to be happy, engaged in their work, and relaxed. Some people chose the traditional chairs and tables while I opted for a big, comfy chair with my MacBook on my lap. The quiet music, perfect lighting, and overall aesthetics of the coffee shop were favorable for a variety of learners. And if I wanted to switch up my seat during my stay, I was free to do just that. Problem Solvers Now = Problem Solvers Later I'm a firm believer in keeping the focus on what's really important: the students. What the Research Says Everything I do in my classroom is based on research and best practices for kids. Simple in-class activities can boost performance. Classroom Redesign on a Budget

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/flexible-seating-student-centered-classroom-kayla-delzer

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Why the 21st Century Classroom May Remind You of Starbucks It’s been my dream to make my 2nd grade classroom look more like a “Starbucks for kids”, and less like, well, a classroom. Think about when you go to Starbucks to complete some work. Why do you choose to work there? Where do you choose to sit? I usually gravitate towards the comfy seating choices like the couches and big chairs, and yet, I see people choose the tables and chairs over and over again. Is It Time To Ban Computers From Classrooms? : 13.7: Cosmos And Culture Every semester, college instructors face a choice: whether to restrict the use of laptops and other devices in their classrooms or to, instead, let students decide for themselves. And for classrooms that do allow devices, students face an ongoing set of choices: to take notes electronically or by hand, to check the textbook or the text message, to check Instagram or Twitter. This bounty of choices, and the multitasking that often ensues, may be the very problem that drives some instructors to ban devices altogether. In fact, evidence suggests that computer-based multitasking can reduce student learning, not only for those students using devices but also for their distracted neighbors. Even when computers are used for the praiseworthy purpose of taking class notes, computer-using students tend to do more poorly on later tests than their peers who took notes by hand.

Can students who are constantly on their devices actually learn? I have a rule about cellphones in class: if one disrupts us by ringing, vibrating or sounding an alarm, the owner has to sing a song or bust some dance moves in front of the class. At first, this provision in the syllabus elicits snickers, but it’s no laughing matter. You need to be able to turn off your phones and pay attention, I say. On the first day of class, they shut off their phones. But it doesn’t stay that way. While my students – undergraduates at Boston University who are taking classes on writing and research – agree that there’s a problem if they can’t go 50 minutes without checking their phones, few of them can resist, despite knowing that this is my biggest pet peeve.

A Diagram Of Pedagogy in the 21st Century - TeachThought: A Diagram Of Pedagogy in the 21st Century by Terry Heick We know that thinking in the 21st century seems different. What about teaching? 5 Ways Innovative Classroom Design Can Help Students In Schools About ETR Community EdTechReview (ETR) is a community of and for everyone involved in education technology to connect and collaborate both online and offline to discover, learn, utilize and share about the best ways technology can improve learning, teaching, and leading in the 21st century. EdTechReview spreads awareness on education technology and its role in 21st century education through best research and practices of using technology in education, and by facilitating events, training, professional development, and consultation in its adoption and implementation.

A new school year: Setting up your teaching space Dylan Meikle, a PYP workshop leader, an elementary school counselor at the Western Academy of Beijing and prior homeroom teacher In this article you will find some ideas on setting up your teaching space at the beginning of a new school year. Busy days rearranging furniture and organizing resources characterize the buildup to a new school year. Mix in a pinch of nervous energy and a whole lot of good intention and teachers can spend dozens of hours preparing their physical space for their new class.

Cultivating a Classroom Culture of Creativity A Guest Blog Post by Jeanne Muzi Cultivating a Classroom Culture of Creativity is a mindset and a skill set. You must believe in the power of incorporating creative problem solving and thinking activities into all the subject areas and be ready to take advantage of the “pockets” of time that develop during “normal” school days…when you have 5 minutes at the end of a lesson, two minutes during a transition, the 10 minutes you gain when an assembly finishes early, etc. By using every opportunity to intentionally cultivate creativity, students can learn, practice and enhance their creative thinking skills!

Thinking is awesome – eportfolios Current online information environments and associated transactions are considered an important ‘information ecosystem’ (Haythornthwaite & Andrews, 2011, p in ch 8) influencing and shaping professional engagement and digital scholarship in communities of learning in the higher education sector (Lee, McLoughlin & Chan, 2008). This kind of information ecosystem is also considered to be social in practice and making use of use of participatory technologies and online social networks to share, reflect, critique, improve, and validate academic engagement and scholarship (Veletsianos & Kimmons, 2012, p.768). Thanks to advances in technology, the powerful tools at our disposal to help students understand and learn in unique ways are enabling new ways of producing, searching and sharing information and knowledge (Conole, 2013). By leveraging technology, we have the opportunity to open new doors to scholarly inquiry for ourselves and our students.

Visualizing 21st-Century Classroom Design Problem-based learning, makerspaces, flipped learning, student blogging -- these are becoming perceived staples of 21st-century learning. With such ambitious practices taking the spotlight for how people regard modern classrooms, it's not surprising that a murmur of impracticality or skepticism is still a frequent response when they're first introduced. So how do we encourage teachers everywhere to believe that great changes can happen in their classrooms? Visible Thinking Purpose: What kind of thinking does this routine encourage? The routine helps students make connections between new ideas and prior knowledge. It also encourages them to take stock of ongoing questions, puzzles and difficulties as they reflect on what they are learning. Application: When and Where can it be used? The natural place to use the Connect-Extend-Challenge routine is after students have learned something new. It doesn't matter how much they have learned – it can be a lesson's worth, or a unit's worth.

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