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News

New from Kiddom

kiddomKiddom is a free standards-based platform designed to help teachers curate individual learning experiences. Its pages are visual and easy-to-understand, enabling teachers to quickly determine how students are doing and where remediation is needed–all without spending a lot of time analyzing data. Many of the details are linked, allowing you to dig deeper on any subject from a variety of pages rather than one specific spot.

I met them last year and continue to be amazed by their creativity (see my review here). Here’s their latest update:

Social Emotional Learning Rubrics Available

Great educators teach the whole child. That’s why in addition to supporting CASEL’s social emotional learning (SEL) competencies, we’re proud to announce we’ve now added SEL-aligned rubrics that can be added to any assignment (for grades 6-12). To start using these rubrics, be sure to add Social Emotional Learning as a subject in class settings.

The links below offer tips on how to best weave these SEL rubrics into your daily classroom practices.

 kiddom 1. Develop self-awareness with summative assessments.
2. Project self-management by adding goal setting and monitoring.
3. Support social awareness by providing reflection opportunities.
4. Promote relationship skills with class discussions or presentations.
5. Track responsible decision making by adhering to assignment deadlines.

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Categories: News | Tags: | Leave a comment

Happy Thanksgiving Week to All!

thanksgivingI’m taking next week off. I’ll be preparing for my daughter’s holiday visit from her home in DC and my son who’s visiting from El Paso TX. I am so excited to see both of them!

I’ll be back November 28th. Any emergencies–drop me a line at askatechteacher@gmail.com.


Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, CSG Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, CAEP reviewer, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, and a weekly contributor to TeachHUB. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

Categories: Holidays, News | 3 Comments

12 Websites that Explain Elections

voteI published this article in early October, but am republishing it as our American elections are upon us. I got a lot of good feedback from readers, as well as a few new sites, so the collection has increased from 8 to 12:

***

In about half the world’s nations–such as those ruled by socialism, communism, dictators, and autocracies–law and order are decided by government agencies, often people placed in power by those already in power. When America wrote its Democracy-based Constitution and Bill of Rights in the late 1700’s, we chose a different route. Called ‘the Grand Experiment’, the founders empowered ordinary citizens–farmers, shopkeepers, laborers, and seamstresses–to elect the individuals who would protect America’s shores, our freedoms, and our way of life. Fifty years after our inception, it was still unclear whether it would work. In fact, Abraham Lincoln warned:

“Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.”

A hundred years later, Gore Vidal bemoaned:

“Half of the American people have never read a newspaper. Half never voted for President. One hopes it is the same half.”

Still, every four years, Americans make a critical choice that will shape our nation’s path. Because decisions are made by the people rather than government agencies, citizens are expected to research their options and then vote for the Presidential candidate most qualified to fulfill the country’s goals.

With this most influential position up for grabs in just a few months, I’ve curated a list of eight websites to share with students as they prepare for the day they’ll be asked to cast their vote and decide the future. The first five explain elections in general and the next three teach the process through gamification.

(more…)

Categories: Civics, News | Leave a comment

Classroom Experts on Tap–from Nepris

If you haven’t met Nepris before, here’s the abbreviated introduction: Nepris is an amazing source of experts available to meet virtually with your class. It’s like Skype but easier, less work, and more comprehensive. Check out my review here for more details.

If you’re looking for professional experts to appear in your classroom, here’s what’s coming up:

(more…)

Categories: News | Leave a comment

10 Ways to Use Twitter in Class

twitter in educationFor anyone who missed the April announcement, Twitter switched its app category from ‘social media’ (where it consistently ranked in the top ten with Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp, and Pinterest) to ‘news’ (now ranked #1, ahead of apps like CNN, Fox News, and Reddit). It makes sense; tweets and twitter streams have been part of hard-core news reports for years as an effective way for leaders and politicians to reach their constituents and pollsters to gauge what interests people. A good example is this series of tweets explaining the recent Brexit vote.

As an educator, I am thrilled. Twitter’s gossipy reputation among administrators and most parents negates its dynamic applications in the classroom. With the not-so-recent addition of audio and video files (easily embedded from sites like Instagram and Periscope), educators can easily use it as a student-friendly approach to everything from assessment to sharing notes.

Before unpacking Twitter in your classroom, here are a few guidelines:

  • Clear its use with your administration. Be prepared to educate them on why what seems to be social media is actually educational.
  • Inform parents that their children will be using Twitter to collaborate, share information, study for tests, and other uses specific to your program. Again, as with your administration, be prepared to explain the benefits of a Twitter-powered class.
  • Twitter doesn’t have a lower age limit, but does reference ‘thirteen’ as a suggested minimum age. You decide what fits your group. You may also decide that setting the Twitter stream as private (called ‘protected Tweets’) is a good educational decision.
  • Demonstrate how to use Twitter and what the symbols mean (tie this into a class discussion on math symbols).
  • Establish rules for Twitter use. Remind students it is for educational uses only; chatting and socializing must be done through other means. Then enforce it by suspending privileges, warning abusers, or whatever works best in your classroom climate.
  • Check out the Twitter streams of other educators before starting. Here’s one for a first-grade class to get you started. The visual of how they use it to enhance education is powerful.

Here are my ten favorite uses of Twitter in my classroom:

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Categories: Classroom management, News, Social media | Tags: | Leave a comment

8 Websites that Explain Elections

Yellow sign with VOTE HERE is standing by a line of people wating to get to the polls in Arizona

In about half the world’s nations–such as those ruled by socialism, communism, dictators, and autocracies–law and order are decided by government agencies, often people placed in power by those already in power. When America wrote its Democracy-based Constitution and Bill of Rights in the late 1700’s, we chose a different route. Called ‘the Grand Experiment’, the founders empowered ordinary citizens–farmers, shopkeepers, laborers, and seamstresses–to elect the individuals who would protect America’s shores, our freedoms, and our way of life. Fifty years after our inception, it was still unclear whether it would work. In fact, Abraham Lincoln warned:

“Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.”

A hundred years later, Gore Vidal bemoaned:

“Half of the American people have never read a newspaper. Half never voted for President. One hopes it is the same half.”

Still, every four years, Americans make a critical choice that will shape our nation’s path. Because decisions are made by the people rather than government agencies, citizens are expected to research their options and then vote for the Presidential candidate most qualified to fulfill the country’s goals.

With this most influential position up for grabs in just a few months, I’ve curated a list of eight websites to share with students as they prepare for the day they’ll be asked to cast their vote and decide the future. The first five explain elections in general and the next three teach the process through gamification.

(more…)

Categories: Civics, News | 1 Comment

New from Turnitin: iPad app for Feedback Studio

turnitinWith all the time students and teachers are spending with iPads, Turnitin Feedback Studio‘s new iPad app is a welcome addition to their toolkits. Students can submit papers, analyze similarity reports (to check for originality), and review instructor feedback on the go. Here’s what Jacinta Lujano, attending Naval Postgraduate School, says:

“Feedback Studio for iPad makes it really simple to submit my writings and to get on-the-go feedback… It’s really simple and intuitive to use, too. I love it.”

For educators, the interface is cleaner and the process to view accounts and classes simplified, including streamlined grading on- and offline. According to Cheryl Ashbaugh, communications professor at Robert Morris University:

“I can grade papers anywhere I want on my tablet with the Turnitin Feedback Studio app. Not having to carry so much around with me has been great for my back!”

Key features include:

(more…)

Categories: News | Leave a comment

Haiku Deck Classroom Intro Price Ends Soon

haiku deckJust an update for you on Haiku Deck Deck Classroom. The special introductory price (with access for a teacher and up to 150 students) will soon end. This is different from the traditional Haiku Deck slideshow tool which has become a staple in many lesson plans. Haiku Deck Classroom includes:

  • All the features of Haiku Deck Pro for a teacher and his/her students: Unlimited presentation creation, advanced privacy settings, offline viewing and printing, YouTube video embedding, and more.
  • Classroom Management Dashboard: Easily add/remove courses and students to your account.
  • New Course Galleries: Students can submit Haiku Decks for teacher review
  • Optional Google Classroom Integration & Google Sign in: For schools using Google Classroom, import courses and student lists from Google Classroom

Also offered is special bulk pricing for departments, schools, or districts. Question? Email education@haikudeck.com.

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Categories: News | Leave a comment

New Features From Nepris for the New School Year

I’ve written about Nepris before–a transformative cloud-based platform that connects STEAM subject experts with teachers and classes. This month, they’re offering a great group of back-to-school tools that will help you organize your expert presentations and share out the details:

Share an update in your activity feed right from your teacher dashboard by typing it into the box at the top of your screen.

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Filter videos and sessions by career cluster and grade level, so you don’t waste any time finding what you’re looking for!

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Get immediate guidance navigating the new website by logging in and clicking on “Take a Tour” on the bottom right of your dashboard. For more support, access Help Videos on every page.

 

Here are a few of the expert chats Nepris has available for the new school year:

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Categories: News, Online education | Tags: | Leave a comment

We Remember… 9/11

America, we love you.

Categories: History, News | 2 Comments