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Showing posts from October, 2019

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

Leveled Templates

After listening to the latest episode of Google Teacher Tribe on templates in G Suite , I was inspired to share out how my co-teacher Andelee Espinosa and I handle leveled templates on our co-taught physics classroom. In our classroom, we have a diverse range of student learning strengths and barriers to learning. To assist learners in the expression of learning, we create templates for labs, activities, and summative assessments. In addition, to reduce obstacles to expression for some learners, we create scaffolded templates. An example of this can be seen in our current unit on energy. One of the end of unit assessment options is an in-depth analysis of marble roller coasters we created last week. Since all students worked on the marble coasters, we want to be sure all students have the opportunity to choose this as a potential option to demonstrate mastery of unit outcomes. To facilitate this, we have created 3 different files. While all levels address the same outcomes. each

Portfolio for Reflection

In our student portfolio process, collecting and presenting artifact has taken priority. Traditionally, when present an artifact, they explain the artifact to an outside audience and how it connects to the unit outcomes.  One day in class, we were doing an exploration in which they observed a Cartesian diver and hypothesizing how it worked. They recorded these observations and explanations to Flipgrid. Eventually in the unit we would discuss the reasons why things float and sink based on buoyant forces and weight. As we ended the unit, I had an idea based on the fact that students had recorded these ideas in Flipgrid and had access to them via my.flipgrid.com. Many times students look at pretest and post test scores to reflect on growth. So, I had an idea to do something similar but without looking at scores. My idea involved going beyond a simple summary of the activity in the portfolio and an attempt for students to reflect on their past learning to see how their thinking had e

Reducing Barriers to Instruction

This is the essence of Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Our task, as educators, is to design learning experiences where all students can be equally empowered, challenged, and supported. To do this, we have to be proactive about identifying and eliminating barriers that prevent inclusive learning and innovation. Couros, G., & Novak, K. (2019). Innovate inside the box: empowering learners through Udl and the Innovators Mindset. Place of publication not identified: published by IMpress, a division of Dave Burgess Consulting, Inc. Andelee Espinosa and I teach in a very traditional looking high school. But, our physics class is not your typical physics class. Our co-taught physics classroom includes a wide spectrum of learners. Not only those who would not traditionally be in the physics classroom, but those who only a few years ago would be in a self-contained classroom. So how can we meet the needs of all learners in a college prep physics classroom when all of the learners