Tuesday, October 10, 2017

FREE trainings from Google

As Google has grown as a company over the last 20 years, so has many of the public's mistrust in their data collection and sharing practices. Although as an educator, I appreciate the amount of free resources and training they offer through Google For Education. They recently released training sessions in the following areas:

1) Chromebooks -- these devices are taking over the educational technology landscape by offering an inexpensive, cloud-based, simple alternative to Apple and other PC's. In this training, users can expect to learn:
  • What are Chromebooks and how are they different from other computers
  • How to manage and take care of Chromebooks in schools
  • How to personalize your Chromebook
  • How you can integrate technology in your classroom using Chromebooks
  • How Chromebooks and G Suite for Education work seamlessly together
  • How teachers can find and assign apps to students
  • How to troubleshoot simple Chromebook issues, and where to find support when needed
2) Digital Citizenship and Safety Course -- Many adults went through an educational world without a readily available internet (at least those of us 35+) so many don't have the necessary skills to teach online safety. This training can help educators learn:
  • Why teaching digital citizenship and online safety is important
  • How to teach students about internet safety and privacy
  • Online safety through mobile devices and public Wifi networks
  • How to evaluate online resources
  • How to avoid potential phishing and other online scams
  • How to manage online profiles


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Hacking Project Based Learning #HackingPBL

I recently finished the Hacking PBL book from Ross Cooper and Erin Murphy. I’ve used Project Based Learning in my classroom for the last few years, but I felt as if there was more to learn about the process. Hacking PBL helped me create a planning tool and framework for each project I try with students. I really enjoyed the chapter on having students create questions. I highly recommend this book for any teacher looking to implement PBL in his/her classroom.
My notes from Hacking PBL: https://goo.gl/XX3jCV

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

InnEdCO 2017 -- Makerspaces/Innovative Learning Lab

Building an Innovative Learning Lab:
1) Meet with teachers to come up with a plan to use the library

2) What projects can students collaboratively working on in my space?

3) Partnerships: who can I meet with to make my Makerspace better?
     -EdTech specialists
     -Maker materials donations -- could the Steck community help?
     -Local Business sponsors
     -Hill MS teachers

4) Storage -- research how to have functional storage
    -reach out to others that have the same issue with space
    -fund through Donor's Choose/PTA grant?

Amazon storage shelves

InnEdCO 2017 -- #COllaporative -- energized PD

For the 1st session, I attended the #COllapportive panel session.

Presenter's slide deck: bit.ly/copdrev
#COllapportive website: http://www.collapporative.org/ 

#Collapportive is a social learning group
-meet once a month in a space in Lakewood, CO
-more of an EdCamp model where the participants set the agenda
-community building setting for educators

 *Build a website just for PD -- great way to house resources & archived notes
Ideas around PD:
-more choice for teachers
-app/tool sharing
-showing Ts tools they can make their own: Twitter, District-paid websites, Donor's Choose, Engagement tools/ideas

mindSpark Learning -- free Professional Development space
-teachers can attend free sessions on a wide array of topics
-meeting/hangout space for teachers

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

InnEdCO 2017 -- My presentation -- 3D printing

This morning, Paige Dersham and I presented about our experience with 3D printers, TinkerCAD, and Donor's Choose. I was fairly anxious about having to present for 2 hours, but it went really well.

Here's our slide deck: 

If I was to change anything, I would want to add a Google Doc where we could share out all the tricks we learned while working on TinkerCAD. I had teachers showing me tricks I didn't know someone could do. It would be great to have one spot, like a Google Doc, where we could share all those fantastic ideas.

InnEdCO 2017 -- Classroom Redesign

For my second session of the day, I attended a Classroom Redesign session with Paige Dersham and Meegan Bennet

Slide Deck:

My notes:

Redesigning My Classroom

-tables are tough to move
-electrical cord for projector cart stretches under tables
-teacher desk takes up too much space
-old promethean board doesn’t work & needs to be removed
-no area to write on the walls -- make thinking visible
-not much room to store makerspace materials
-Where to I put the RedCat speaker system?

Old promethean board -- turn it into a mobile green screen?

Learning Landscapes:

Layout of my room:
I have 2 classroom which make up our Library/Computer lab where the students work with laptops. Below are the layout of both spaces.

  1. In red, I labeled the changes I’d like to make to both spaces. The biggest change would be removing my look-up stations & teacher desk.
  2. I’d like to add storage along the wall in place of the teacher desk\look-up stations for our makerspaces
  3. I’d like to make the extra space a place for students to work in small groups -- I need to come up with norms & expectations around this extra space

Monday, June 12, 2017

InnEdCO 2017 -- Snapshots

Infusing Engineering into a Science classroom
Paige Dersham
Presentation link

Create your own Coding Club Using Google CS First
Megan Cosmos
Presentation Link

Tips & Tricks:
  • Use Google Forms
  • Record logins asap
  • Get parent permission
  • Encourage sharing & discussion
  • Logged into Google CS First and Scratch
  • Prepare - Plan - Play

Their materials:
  • are completely free and available online
  • are targeted at students in grades 4th-8th (ages 9-14)
  • can be tailored to fit your schedule and needs
  • involve block-based coding using Scratch and are themed to attract students with varied interests