Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Teachers Pay Teachers

I’ve used Teachers Pay Teachers throughout my career in education. It’s a fairly self-explanatory resource, but it provides a platform for educators to share the work they’ve created in the classroom, whether it’s a how-to for an instructional technology tool or a lesson planning template, with other educators for free or for a small fee. I’ve decided to start adding some free and for-pay resources of my own creation. Here’s my online store:

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Donor's Choose STEAM project

In my library and technology program, our K-5 students work tirelessly to think critically and solve problems. We do this through STEAM projects and the engineering process. When the students work through the engineering process, one of the steps includes searching for possible solutions to their problem. With the help of these STEAM books and resources, my students will have the opportunity to discover possible solutions through printed materials.

I've witnessed first-hand the excitement of my students when engaged in the engineering process.

STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) projects provide an excellent opportunity for cross-curricular projects where students apply all disciplines into their projects. They are willing to read as much as they can about the problem they're trying to solve. They'll apply mathematics to their problem by measuring and drawing items to scale. With the help of these materials, our students will continue this engagement through the engineering process.

LINK TO MY PROJECT: https://goo.gl/id5X9i

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.