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Five Ways to Bring Innovation Into the Classroom

Five Ways to Bring Innovation Into the Classroom

Can Student-Driven Learning Happen Under Common Core? Teaching Strategies Erin Scott By Marsha Ratzel Teachers use different strategies to help students learn. With the inevitable arrival of the Common Core State Standards, however, the big unknown is what will happen when the assessments are released and the states and the federal government develop policies to accommodate them. But if assessments mirror the broad principles and effective pedagogy that the CCSS authors have championed, there is hope that rote learning and teacher-driven classrooms will not be necessary in order for students to pass the test. Most student-driven classrooms start with a question. Three of the eight mathematical practices that lie at the heart of all the Common Core’s K-12 math standards could be statements that describe a student-centered classroom. The “tension” will come when the the goal of student-driven learning bumps up against the traditional teacher’s instinct to provide the context and the questions for students to use. Related

The Reflective Teacher: Taking a Long Look School has been in session for a few weeks, and things might be finally settling down for most teachers. Days seem to pass by so quickly that it seems amazing anything was accomplished. Despite the whirlwind start of the year, it's still important to make time for reflection. It took me some time realize that reflection is vital to my growth as an educator. I also needed to learn what real reflection looked like. It's so much more than thinking that I did a good job or changing one essay question. 1. One always scary but very important thing is asking the students how the lesson went. The first time I handed students a survey, I was terrified. 2. Teachers often think they can remember it all, but that's rarely the case. If you use a planner for your lessons, use sticky notes for initial thoughts after a lesson, and stick them in the planner. 3. Blogging has been one of the biggest parts of my professional growth. A blog can be used as a private journal to dump ideas. 4.

Harnessing Children’s Natural Ways of Learning By Luba Vangelova Fed up with the restrictions at his conventional school, 10-year-old Scott Gray convinced his parents to transfer him to one where children control their own education. His father, Peter Gray, who’s a developmental psychologist, watched his son thrive and began seeking to understand how children learned in such a setting, and what lessons could be drawn from it. The Sudbury Valley School — a “democratic school” where children are involved in setting and enforcing the rules of behavior, and are free to decide what to do with their time — had been around since the 1960s. “The school totally violates our cultural beliefs about what children need to do to become educated,” he says. “Children can educate themselves and are good at doing so if the conditions are right.” To understand how the kids were learning, he and a graduate student observed them closely. To better understand why, he looked at it from an evolutionary perspective. Related

informationtraining | Just another site New Mistakes | Failing forward, in technology and in life My job is like a Choose Your Own Adventure Novel. There are so many possibilities, and I never know exactly where my day will end up. While many of my coaching cycles are planned, I never know what will happen when I walk into a planning meeting. Plus, so many unexpected collaboration opportunities and problems that need to be solved come up every single day. I want to choose something current for my final project. Possibility #1: Metacognition & Technology Why do you think this unit is a good possibility for your Course 5 project? What are some of your concerns about redesigning this unit? What shifts in pedagogy will this new unit require from you? What skills and/or attitudes will this new unit require from your students? ***********Possibility #3: Student-Driven Digital Portfolios in Grade 1, 4 or 5 Why do you think this unit is a good possibility for your Course 5 project? What are some of your concerns about redesigning this unit? I’d love to hear questions, ideas or thoughts!

Report Finds ‘Deeper Learning’ Model Improves Outcomes for All Students The conversation about what kids need to know and to be able to do by the end of high school has gradually shifted over the past several years to emphasize not just rigorous content goals, but also less tangible skills, such as creative thinking, problem-solving and collaboration. That shift has brought schools that are practicing “deeper learning” into focus. The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has been a big supporter of this work, defining deeper learning as a model that focuses on critical thinking, communication, collaboration, academic mindsets and learning how to learn, all through rigorous content. New research conducted by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) has found that the deeper learning model does have positive learning outcomes for students, regardless of their background. The model is often critiqued as a framework that only works for high-achieving learners. AIR investigators also looked at more traditional measures of achievement — tests. Related

Ready to Learn? The Key Is Listening With Intention Teaching Strategies WoodleyWonderWorks Listening and observing can be passive activities—in one ear and out the other, as our mothers used to say. Or they can be rich, active, intense experiences that lead to serious learning. The difference lies in our intention: the purpose and awareness with which we approach the occasion. Here’s how to make sure your intentions are good. Research on how we learn a second language demonstrates that effective listening involves more than simply hearing the words that float past our ears. In 2010, for example, University of Ottawa researcher Larry Vandergrift published his study of 106 undergraduates who were learning French as a second language. So what are these listening strategies? • Skilled learners go into a listening session with a sense of what they want to get out of it. • Once they begin listening, these learners maintain their focus; if their attention wanders, they bring it back to the words being spoken. Observing With Intention Related

What Would a ‘Slow Education Movement’ Look Like? Big Ideas Shelley Wright/PLPNetwork The many incredible innovations of the 20th century have sped up the pace of life in addition to giving many people more access to information and communication tools. The anytime/anywhere learning made possible by mobile technology and the internet hold great potential for new ways of teaching, but some educators worry that the emphasis on efficiency and instant access is having a negative impact on some of the core tenets of education. “So what does the Slow Movement mean for education? Related Explore: Shelley Wright, slow education

On-the-Spot Scaffolding for Students Scrambling in the moment to figure out what students need when they just don't get it is one of the exciting challenges of teaching. Being able to respond to learners' needs on the spot is hands down one of the greatest tricks of this trade. And when lesson planning, we can't always guess how many steps we will need to break a lesson into and how much support will be needed for each chunk. I know I've made assumptions about what students will "get" and then in the middle of the lesson, I've had to stop, think on my feet, and add something to help move the learning forward. Just to be clear: Scaffolding a lesson and differentiating instruction are two different things. Simply put, scaffolding is what you do first with kids, then for those students who are still struggling, you may need to differentiate by modifying an assignment and/or making accommodations for a student (for example, choose more accessible text and/or assign an alternative project). 3 Scaffolding Strategies

What Can Educators Learn from the Gaming Industry? Editor's note: This post is co-authored by Cameron Baker, a game designer focused on "creating meaningful, engaging, provocative, and captivating experiences through strong, focused design and enticing story worlds." As Jordan Shapiro said at the 2014 Global Education & Skills Forum: Games are not just about entertainment and distraction anymore. Well, Jordan pretty much hits the nail on the head. Once seen as a form of entertainment or a way to pass the time, games are now becoming prevalent in every industry -- particularly in education. But what gives games these qualities? Free to Learn, Free to Play Games present users with a mechanic -- that is, a set outline of rules and dynamics that guide gameplay -- and as players invest more time in the mechanic, they get a stronger understanding for how it works and an increased proficiency at applying the mechanic. Take Braid or Portal. Why? Because students in schools are absorbing and applying knowledge to pass a test.

Our technology messages are important | Dangerously Irrelevant When we take away technology access because of student behavior concerns, we send the message that digital devices and the Internet are optional, ‘nice to have’ components of schooling rather than core elements of modern-day learning and teaching. When we ban teachers from using social media – but not other forms of interaction – to communicate with students in or out of school, we send the message that we are unable to distinguish between behaviors and the mediums in which they occur. When we decline to devote adequate time or support for technology-related professional learning and implementation, we send the message that low-level or nonexistent usage is just fine. When we require educators to go hat in hand to IT personnel to get an educational resource unblocked, we send the message that we distrust them so they must be monitored. When we make blanket technology policies that punish the vast majority for the actions of a few, we send the messages of inconsistency and unfairness.

The 33 Digital Skills Every 21st Century Teacher should Have By EdTech Team Updated on march 2, 2015 : The original list that was created in 2011 comprised 33 skills , after reviewing it we decided to do some merging and finally ended up with the 20 skills below. The 21st century teacher should be able to : 1- Create and edit digital audio Here are some tools for teachers to develop this skill :Free Audio Tools for Teachers 2- Use Social bookmarking to share resources with and between learners Here are some tools for teachers to develop this skill : A List of Best Bookmarking Websites for Teachers 3- Use blogs and wikis to create online platforms for students Here are some tools for teachers to develop this skill : Great Tools to Create Protected Blogs and Webpages for your Class 4- Exploit digital images for classroom use Here are some tools for teachers to develop this skill :Web Tools to Edit Pictures without Installing any softwareTools to Convert Photos into Cartoons

7 Simple Ways You Can Help Students Pay Attention In A Traditional Classroom - 7 Simple Ways You Can Help Students Pay Attention by TeachThought Staff For many teachers, helping students “pay attention” is probably the wrong way to help improve what you’re probably trying to improve. Listless students. Apathetic responses. Uninspired work. Talking. Texting. Behavior issues. “Off-taskedness.” Daydreaming. These are the hallmarks of a classroom and curriculum in need of some significant rethinking rather than a few “takeaways” to help students “stare longer at work they don’t care about.” That said, for others, the challenge may indeed by one of pure student engagement. Provided in the following infographic from Reading Horizons are some strategies for increasing student engagement. 7 Simple Ways You Can Help Students Pay Attention In A Traditional Classroom 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 7 Simple Ways You Can Help Students Pay Attention In A Traditional Classroom; image attribution