links for 2010-05-27

  • "Dear Mr. Policymaking Man,

    As a sixth grade language arts teacher for the better part of the past 16 years, I've tried to serve you well. I'm proud to have been a role model for my students—men who love reading, writing AND 12-year olds aren't exactly easy to come by—and proud to have passed along skills that will help my students to be influential communicators in whatever profession that they choose."

    (tags: blogs tempered)
  • (tags: blogs)
  • "I find that using rubrics is the best way for me to share my expectations with the students. I want them to know what I’m looking for before they begin the work. Too many times I have worked on an assignment for a teacher only to find out halfway that I was moving in the wrong direction and had to start all over. Not only was I discouraged but I was frustrated by the waste of time that I had already put in. Rubrics also help me organize my own thoughts and criteria before I give an assignment. I have also seen too many teachers give busy work to students with no thought about assessing the finished project and believe me, students can pick up on this quickly. If they see the teacher doesn’t care, why should they put thought and effort into it either? "
  • "Here’s Sir Ken Robinson delivering the TED talk that occurred in February, but has just been released on the TED site. Please watch it, not just once, but two or three times, and internalise the message. Ken asks for a revolution in our schools. A revolution that allows our students to explore what they are passionate about. A revolution that will require a rethink of curriculum structures that bind us to an industrial model of teaching. A revolution that needs teachers who understand new technologies and how we can use these tools to assist our students in pursuing their passions. Sounds like the ethos underlying Students 2.0 really."
  • "Our room is a large semi-industrial studio. The students in the foreground are sitting in our Blogger's Lounge while in the distance, two students are projecting student work and leading a peer review session, and to the right a cluster of students have a chat session around a table to plan for their presentation
  • "Most academics consider Wikipedia the enemy and so forbid their students from using Wikipedia for research. But here’s a secret that they don’t want you to know—we all use Wikipedia, including those academics.

    There’s a reason that the Wikipedia entry normally comes in at the top of a Google search. Google relies heavily on inbound links to rank a site, and Wikipedia is one of the most commonly linked sites on the Internet. Here’s another secret—Wikipedia is vetted by volunteer academics. Wikipedia’s motto is “no original thought,” meaning that everything must be cited, and uncited material is quickly removed. In fact, studies have shown the Wikipedia is about as accurate as Britannica.

    Here are two ways to use Wikipedia to improve learning outcomes in your classes:"

    (tags: wikipedia)
  • Why should educators get involved with Twitter? Here are nine reasons.

    1. Together we’re better
    2. Global or local: you choose
    3. Self-awareness and reflective practice
    4. Ideas workshop and sounding board
    5. Newsroom and innovation showcase
    6. Professional development and critical friends
    7. Quality-assured searching
    8. Communicate, communicate, communicate
    9. Getting with the times has never been so easy!

  • "Should I or shouldn’t I? That’s my question right now as I have been asked to be a teacher-leader in an upcoming New Literacies Institute being hosted by our state Department of Education. It certainly seems intriguing and it’s exciting that our state is dipping its toes into New Literacies."
    (tags: blogs)
  • "I honestly try not to take too much technology knowledge for granted with my students. But yesterday, as we moved deeper into our figurative language stopmotion animation project, I realized that a very small percentage of my students knew how to create a very basis element of Windows: a folder."
  • "This morning, I am pleased to be a part of Littleton Public Schools’ Adolescent Literacy Institute, and I am able to participate in Harvey “Smokey” Daniels’ keynote, “Best Practice Across the Curriculum.” Here are some notes from his session:

    * Goals for today
    o Define “Best Practice”
    o Consider the missing link: student collaboration
    o Watch video of kids working together
    o Introduction to Inquiry Circles"

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