Jul 24, 2014

TEDg Talk

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Mrs. Guy was my kindergarten teacher. She was the sweetest little lady. Her name was a little confusing for a kindergartener, I mean, Mrs. Guy?


But she taught me a lot. So I ask myself, what was the most important thing I learned in kindergarten?


Sharing.


Right. I mean, I’m sure there was some other profound things, like how to write my name, or say my ABCs, tie my shoes. All important. But one of those first ideas was sharing.


And we love to share. This is why social media is, well, so social. People have to be social. We are social beings.


But somewhere in school, sharing became not such a good thing. Sure you could share your peanut butter and jelly sandwich. That was fine. But sharing your answer to #4 on the science test, no, that was bad.


And we went through school learning like this. Sometimes, sharing is caring. Other times, sharing is cheating. There's a scary word: cheating. That is the worst swear word in the classroom. Cheating.


And this went on through college, and then you become the teachers. But some sharing is good and some sharing is bad. And we are afraid to share.


But we need sharing. Sharing makes us social. Sharing makes us better. You will never have the best lesson for everything. But you might have one, and a teacher in Florida has one, and a teacher in Alaska has one, and a teacher in Ireland has one. But if we don’t share, our students don’t get the best.


For the first time in the United States, teachers will be teaching from the same standards. We have a common playbook called the Common Core.


Here is my wish. Share your best work. With someone. Anyone. Start a blog. Email all your colleagues about a great new lesson. Get other teachers to start a blog. Or blog for them. Cheat. Use their work, make it better. Share it with someone else. Record yourself, have other teachers cheat off of you.


If its not good enough to share, make it better, look for something better. Cheat off of another teacher. Be better because of it.


Sometimes the only thing you need to know, you did learn in kindergarten.


Thanks for Sharing.

Understanding Understanding About Maps

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We conducted a video research project about understanding maps. View the results of this research.
Understanding Understanding about Maps

Jul 22, 2014

Dream IT Project

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A major project for year 2 of the Masters of Arts in Education Technology was the Dream IT project. We were ask to to dream about what we would do to incorporate TPACK into the classroom. We were asked to find a problem of practice and, modeling after a grant proposal, synthesize the best solution incorporating content, pedagogy, and technology knowledge. The results were to be posted in the form of a series of websites.


Jul 16, 2014

#GREAT14

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MAET year 2 planned and hosted a technology conference in two weeks, beginning to end!
The keynote speakers were the Youth Media Team. These kids are great. They travel to teacher conferences, attend all the session, and do follow up interviews with presenters. We were very lucky to have them at our conference. This is the first they have every taken the spotlight, usually they are just in the background reporting. 

I put on a session with Ben Ayers called Solutions through Technology. In this session, we found problems posed on Twitter, and tried to find a few way to solve those problems through technology. The video of the session is available to watch on #GREAT14 website.

Jul 2, 2014

Venngage

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Using a new "presentation" tool. I looked at Venngage, which focuses on making infographics.

I think it would be possible to create some good looking charts with it. It is like a page layout program that has charting built into it. It is really mediocre at both, however having those two tools in one place might lead to some improved synthesis of charts and text.