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Showing posts from August, 2018

EdCamp Elmbrook 21

  We had out 5th annual EdCamp this past Saturday and it was a very different PD experience. Due to the pandemic, we help the EdCamp virtually. That meant that anyone across the globe could attend. While we usually only have educators from out region attend, we had educators across the nation and in some in Canada attend. In addition, we had an attendee from Turkey! The conference was conducted using Zoom and Zoom breakout rooms for the sessions. The team did a great job of organization and management. I could go on, but this is my first blog post in a while and I'd like to keep it brief. Below you'll find the session board for the day with notes docs linked. We had some wonderful sessions and the notes documents house some wonderful thoughts and resources. So, I recommend checking them out. Although this EdCamp was only for the morning, there was a lot of learning to be had. We had no technology issues from our end as organizers but I can imagine participants may have had iss

Prime Real Estate in Canvas

As I enter my 5th year of using Canvas as an LMS, I’ve come a long way in terms of how I design the look of my course to facilitate simpler and more transparent workflows for my learners. So, I just wanted to give you a quick tour because a lot of what I have learned has come from others sharing out to the greater EdTech community. So, I just want to keep paying it forward. The biggest breakthrough for me is embedding Google Slides into my site pages . It is really a game changer Dashboard First things first. If you haven’t added an image to your course to appear in the dashboard, get on it. It’ll make your course easier to identify and stand out.  This can all be done in the SETTINGS section. In FEATURE OPTIONS, turn on ENABLE DASHBOARD IMAGES FOR CANVAS. In COURSE DETAILS, click on IMAGE to upload or change your current image. You can upload a jpeg.  If you’re interested in creating GIFs instead of just static images, check out this post . Home Page My h

Is Your Assessment #Instaworty?

insta worthy When a picture is good enough to be posted on Instagram 1. Do you like this picture? Oh yeah, totally insta worthy! -From Urban Dictionary In a presentation I attended at ISTE, Kasey Bell focused on students publishing for real world audiences. As I near the point of completion on my master’s project work, I’ve been thinking about that session. While I will be using the product of my work in my classroom this fall, the nearly 100 hours of work I have spent putting the project together will culminate in a presentation to one person. The only person who will hear me speak to my work will be my academic advisor. Thinking on that, I realize how this is a direct reflection on many of the assessments students complete in my classroom. These assessments are presented to an audience of one or one confined to the walls of the classroom. Think about anytime you’ve finished an exam. Were you feeling a sense of relief because it was done or a sense of accomplishment

Google Slide Is My Wishing Well

One of my favorite podcasts is The Google Teacher Tribe with Kasey Bell and Matt Mille r. One of their favorite EdTech tools is Google Slides, which they have dubbed “The Swiss Army Knife” of G Suite because it can do so much. As I look back on how I’ve been able to use Google Slides in my career, I’d have to call it the Wishing Well of EdTech tools. When I wish I had a better way of doing something in my classroom, Google Slides has me covered. Last year, I began using Google Slides for student lab reports. Learn more about that here. I also began using Google Slides for daily/weekly calendar for students. I update the task list every day with live links and each week we get a new slide. The links stay live so that students can go back if they were absent. The first slide in the deck is the most recent. This means that the first one they see is this week’s. In my last post, I discussed the idea of implementing playlists with lots of curated resources for practice . In th

What's on Your Playlist?

Please don’t shy away from this post as only for science teachers. I would love to hear from others using playlists or thinking about using playlists for feedback and insight. Storyline As summer is winding down, I’m looking to wrap up my big task this summer which was to align my curriculum to new science standards. Starting big picture was creating a rich driving question or anchoring experience (called anchor phenomenon in the science world) which we could use to craft a driving question for our unit. This question requires multiple steps to reach a complete solution or explanation. Each of these steps of the ultimate solution is framed as a smaller question that needs to be answered. By answering these smaller questions, we collect the pieces to the driving question. The process of collecting these pieces and joining them together is not simply referred to as a unit of instruction. We call it a storyline because these pieces build on each other. They are connected. In units o

Teach Like a Person

When I saw Dave Burgess present this week, the buzz in the room after was amazing. But it seemed like the many of us felt that we could never do that , myself included. A big takeaway from Dave is not that he wants us to do that but do that . Let me explain what I mean. Dave is a teacher who brings his interests, his strengths, and his passions to his teaching. He is using who he is to create his voice as a teacher. That means he will do magic tricks. That means he will use his love of theatrics. That means he will bring his mad MC skills to throw down some high velocity prose. Teaching like a Dave doesn’t mean trying to do magic or trying to speak at 200 words per minute. It means bringing yourself into the classroom. If I’m going to teach like a pirate, it won’t be by putting on a Dave Burgess mask. To teach like a pirate, I need to be comfortable with putting who I am in front of my classroom and leveraging everything I bring to engage and empower my learners. So that r