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Teacher resources

It’s Here–the High School Technology Curriculum!

The High School technology curriculum prepares students for their college-and-career future not by teaching widgets and programs—though that happens—but by showing them how to use the tech they have acquired throughout their education. How do they decide what program works best for what inquiry? How do they acquire the use of tools they have never before seen? How do they self-assess their knowledge, ensuring they acquired what they need? Don’t expect black-and-white answers. Success is more likely predicated on student transfer of knowledge than their ability to check off boxes on a rubric.

Here’s a quick overview of what you will find in this textbook:

  • Scope and Sequence aligned with ISTE and Common Core
  • Themed units tied into inquiry
  • Experiential learning with real-world applications
  • Opportunities for students to express and grow in their creativity
  • International mindedness
  • Articles on tech pedagogy

Each Unit includes:

  • an emphasis on comprehension, problem-solving, critical thinking, to prepare for career and college
  • Common Core Standards covered
  • ISTE Standards covered
  • essential question
  • big idea
  • materials required
  • time required to complete
  • domain-specific vocabulary
  • problem solving
  • steps to accomplish goals
  • assessment strategies
  • ways to extend learning
  • project examples where appropriate
  • grading rubrics where appropriate

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Categories: High School, Reviews, Teacher resources | Leave a comment

Last Chance for this College-credit Class

MTI 558: Teach Writing With Tech

All-online, college credit, MTI 558 starts Monday, January 21, 2019! This is the last chance to sign up. Click this link; scroll down to MTI 558 and click for more information and to sign up.

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Free Lesson Plans from Study.com

Study.com is an online distance learning portal that provides over 70,000 lessons in fifteen subjects (including algebra, calculus, chemistry, macro- and microeconomics, and physics) aligned with many popular textbooks. Resources include not only videos but study tools, guides, quizzes, and more. You can read more detail on my Study.com review here.

What a lot of educators don’t know is that Study.com offers thousands of lesson plans for teachers — hundreds of them for free — to simplify lesson preparation and save time that is needed for student guidance. These lesson plans were created by teachers for all different grade levels and subject areas. They include:

  • learning objectives
  • materials
  • length of time
  • curriculum standards alignment
  • key vocabulary
  • instructions
  • extensions
  • related lessons

Once you select the lesson plan you’re interested in, you’ll see the credentials of the teacher who is providing the lesson as well as where it fits into a bigger course if that’s your interest (Though standalone, lessons often are aligned with a particular textbook). Many lesson plans include a video overview and a quiz to assess understanding of the material (though you can’t grade it without an account).

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What You Might Have Missed in December

Here are the most-read posts for the month of December:

  1. College Credit Classes onTechnology in Education
  2. End-of-year Maintenance: Image and Back-up Digital Devices
  3.  End of Year Maintenance: Update Your Online Presence
  4. End-of-Year Maintenance: 19 Steps To A Speedier Computer
  5. 3 Free SEL Activities from SafeSchools
  6. Why Should Students Learn Computer Science? A Teacher’s Perspective
  7. Root Robotics–Great Way to Extend Hour of Code
  8. Holiday Gifts for Teachers
  9. 13 Holiday Websites and 13 Projects

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2019, I Resolve…

NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONSNew Years–a time for rest, rejuvenation and repair. A time to assess life. Do we settle into our routine, enjoy where it’s headed, or is it time to grab our purse, iPhone, car keys, and get out of there?

As a teacher-author, New Year’s Resolutions are more of a To Do list. I break it down into Edtech Coaching/Mentoring, Blogging, and Fiction Writing (my novel writing):

Edtech Coaching/Mentoring

Focus on podcasts, webinars, online classes, and other web-based learning outlets for Ask a Tech Teacher. I have some great partners in this:

If you’re looking for this sort of extension in your platform, let me know.

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Best-in-Class Resources–You Decide

Every year, I review a large number of websites, apps, and resources that help educators blend technology into their classrooms. I get lots of feedback from readers sharing their experiences, asking questions, and clicking through to see if a particular tool will serve their needs.

But, I often don’t hear how the product worked in the fullness of time.

Starting last year, I sought out your opinions:

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Here’s a Preview of January

Here’s a preview of what’s coming up on Ask a Tech Teacher in January:

  • Best-in-Class Resources Competition
  • Subscriber Special: January
  • Questions Parents Ask about Technology
  • MLK Lesson  Plans
  • Free Webinar on Building Digital Citizens
  • How Cloud Computing is Revolutionizing Education
  • Teaching Tolerance
  • Making Kindness Part of Your Classes
  • Trusted Tech Ed Advisors
  • Preparing HS Students for Cybersecurity Careers
  • Wearable Technology

These are all penciled in. If anything changes, you’ll be the first to know!

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End of Year Maintenance: Update Your Online Presence

This week, I’m sharing three holiday activities that will get your computers, technology, and social media ready for the new year. Here’s what you’ll get:

  1. 19 Ways to Speed Up Your Computer
  2. Update Your Online Presence
  3. Backup and Image your computer
  1. A note: The third link above won’t work until the article publishes!

Today: Update Your Online Presence

For most teachers I know, life zooms by, filled with lesson planning, meetings, classes, collaborations with their grade-level team, parent meetings, and thinking. There are few breaks to update/fix/maintain the tech tools that allow us to pursue our trade.

But, that must happen or they deteriorate and no longer accomplish what we need them to do. Cussing them out does no good. Buying new systems takes a long time and doesn’t fix the problem that the old one wasn’t kept up. If they aren’t taken care of, we are left wondering why our teacher blog or website isn’t accomplishing what it does for everyone else, why our social media Tweeple don’t answer us, and why our TPT materials languish. There’s a short list of upkeep items that won’t take long to accomplish. The end of the calendar year is a good time to do these:

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Categories: Blogging, Digital Citizenship, Teacher resources | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Holiday Gifts for Teachers

Holiday gifts for teachers are a challenge. If your child has many teachers, it’s difficult to find a personalized gift for each that is both affordable and valued. For me, as a teacher, I am always happy with a gift certificate that works anywhere but there are time-proven ways to get more creative than a gift that sounds like “money”.

When I chat with teacher friends, here are the most popular gifts they’ve gotten over the years. Many are free and others allow you to spend only what you can afford while still giving a gift the teacher will love.

Most popular gifts

Let’s start by stipulating that what defines a great teacher gift is subjective. It depends upon the teacher’s subject, how long they’ve taught, their personal style, and so much more. The seven suggestions below provide ample ways to provide a gift your child’s teacher will love regardless of how well you know them.

A Helping Hand

Probably the most popular gift with most teachers is the gift of time. Sure, money is nice but when parents are willing to give of themselves to organize class events, chaperone, help out on lesson plans, or any number of other activities, that’s priceless.  As a tech teacher, my ideal is to have two parents for every K-2 class I teach. That’s a lot of helpers and a huge commitment from parents. I rarely found that many so was thrilled whenever parents offered to assist.

Compliments to the Administration

Happy parents often forget to share their joy with the teachers’ administrators. Too often, Principals hear from parents only when they’re angry about the teacher or some class activity. Providing unsolicited good news about the teacher’s effectiveness is a wonderful treat for both the teacher and the school’s administrators.

A Thank You Letter

Handwrite a note to the teacher telling them how much you and your child appreciate what they do. There’s little more valuable to a teacher than the acknowledgment from stakeholders that what they work on nights and weekends is working.

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Here’s a Preview of December

Here’s a preview of what’s coming up on Ask a Tech Teacher in December. Bear in mind–it’s a short month!

  1. Holiday Gifts for Teachers
  2. Why Should Students Learn Computer Science? A Teacher’s Perspective
  3. Have Santa Call Your Kids
  4. 16 Holiday Websites and 13 Projects For Your Student
  5. Where did Christmas Come From?
  6. End-of-Year Maintenance: 19 Steps To A Speedier Computer
  7. End of Year Maintenance: Update Your Online Presence
  8. End-of-year Maintenance: Image and Back-up Digital Devices
  9. Happy Holiday!

Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 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, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice reviewer, CAEP reviewer, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, contributor to NEA Today and TeachHUB, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

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