Tuesday Tips from #GoogleEdu
This was a new one for me, hat tip to Kasey Bell of Shake-up Learning, but #GoogleEdu has a series of Tuesday Tips now. These are for Forms, Classroom and Google Expeditions at the moment, and come as a slide deck- see links below. I couldn't find any other source for these tips, so follow #GoogleEdu on Twitter to stay informed.
MAP Test Correlation Tool
I wrote a while back about the MAP test correlation tool being used by KIPP schools on the west coast, referencing this site and spreadsheets. This worked, but was pretty clunky and labor intensive to set up. Each student had a color coded sheet, which related to their scores on the MAP test, and they also had their own copy of a color coded Kahn Academy list of skills to practice and check off. A lot of flipping back and forth. Lo and behold the NWEA folks have come out with a new tool - a prototype- to do the same thing. This is the tool. It is easy to use; I tried it today with 3rd graders. Here's the instruction page for teachers. Students in grade 3, 5 and 6 are all set up with their most recent MAP scores. There is also a new icon on the hes.symbaloo page which matches the little icon on the top left of this paragraph. Don't ditch the other spreadsheets since this is a prototype and may disappear.
The other cool thing about MAP tests, and I don't say positive things about tests lightly, is the new next gen student profile section with breakouts for instructional ideas. I went to a webinar last week on it and was honestly impressed with the ways to use the data. A bit time-labor intensive, but when you have time- check out the next-gen student profile section. This is a link to the recorded version of “Student Profile Report – Instructional Module.” Below is an example of these reports. You can go through the step by step and see some short videos here.
Most of us have had that magical moment in the classroom when the YouTube video we plan to show now has nasty ads, or obscene comments- which weren't there when we previewed it.
There are lots of ways to get around that sinking feeling, but they do take a bit of planning.
Here's a symbaloo with some ideas for you. I will also pop this onto the HES Teachers symbaloo for those of you who use that as a start page.
So, what are these? The top row- are all places that you can paste the YouTube url and get a clean version to show your class. The row on the right- all ways that you can download the video and put it on your drive. You need to be aware that the TOS for YouTube asks that you do not download and view. The way YouTube makes money is through ads and clicks- not from folks downloading.
The row on the bottom is kind of a mish mash. You can chop out pieces of videos to show. Perhaps you only want the middle 3 minutes of a 20 minutes video... adjust it. I also added a couple of chrome extensions that you can use to hide comments or ads.
One very easy workaround is to insert the YouTube video you want to show into a Google Slide. No ads, no comments- just the video, unless you click thru to the YouTube site.
I got an email from Matt Miller and Kasey Bell this week, letting me know that the first Google Teacher Tribe podcast was online. For those of you who are new to podcasts- they are simply online radio shows. With today's technology you can also subscribe to them and get them to automatically download to your device. This is a link to the first podcast in this new series. They have included lot of additional info and the show notes with links.
Or... you can listen to it here.
There are lots of great podcasts to check on The Education Podcast Network!
Bam Radio has an incredibly robust selection of podcasts to choose from. Check out the menu of categories. A couple of my favorites include the special education channel; I always learn something new and Vicki Davis' Every Classroom Matters
As I mentioned in the email last week- the Tech Tuesday blog is having "technical issues". I checked with Weebly support again today- and it has been escalated... but no solutions yet. The post links seem to work, but when I link to just the site- it is missing the archives, and is squished, etc...generally a mess. So- hopefully this page will be the temporary solution while they figure out what broke.
A couple of things that were in the post last week- but disappeared into cyberspace-
Google Drive changes
GOOGLE DRIVE CHANGES
Matt Miller wrote an excellent blog post with ideas for how you can use the new changes in classroom. Here's a quick video tutorial from that post.
Alice Keeler also has step by step written and screenshot instructions. If you have time, read her take on the use of this for differentiation- interesting.
Diigo is an online bookmarking service. This means that you can bookmark on one computer and see all of your bookmarks at home, or on another device. I've used this service since about 2008 and have over 11,000 bookmarks- all tagged and easy to find. The premium version will also allow you to save cached pages- so that when a site disappears, you can still access the cached version.
All students in grades 4-6 at HES have Diigo accounts. We have a teacher dashboard and can see all the sites the kids bookmark. This can be really helpful for collaborative projects. Diigo has outliners, annotation and has added a new screenshot annotation tool.
If you haven't looked at Diigo in a while- check it out. This page has lots of different tutorials- but does not have the latest features, unfortunately
The problem with fake news is not anything new. The terminology has changed a bit- from yellow journalism to media literacy to "fake news" and “post-truth” but the message is still the same. Educators and students need to sharpen up our CRAP detectors. You can take Howie Reingolds' mini-course, teach your students a memorable acronym or check out the plethora of lessons on offer from Kathy Schrock.
We all live in our own little bubbles and we often create our own echo chambers - listening to, watching the news, videos from - only the folks that we agree with. It may be outside of our comfort zone, but we may well get closer to ferreting out the truth if we look, and train our students to look- outside our bubbles. Check out the graphic below from i.imgur- sorry not sure about the attribution- maybe Vanessa Otero@vlotero. See full size.
Here's a list of sites with Lesson Plans you can use to learn more about fake news and to help teach your students how to be more critical of information from news sources.
One of the new resources this week is the updated Diigo chrome extension. Diigo is used for bookmarking and annotating. The new chrome extension streamlines these features and adds a new screenshot annotation tool. So, why should you care? Diigo can help you categorize bookmarks and share them across all of your devices. It can be used as both a research and a note-taking tool. You can create groups in Diigo and share bookmarks with your peers or create student groups. I've been using Diigo since 2008 and have over 11,000 bookmarks! Now, some of these sites no longer exist- but the premium Diigo version also offers a way to save a page cache- so you never lose the resource. You can sign up as a teacher for a free accounts and get a teacher dashboard to monitor student accounts. Students at HES in grades 4-6 have Diigo accounts.
Big Changes in Google Classroom
I sent out an email blurb about this last week, but essentially you can now differentiate your assignments in Google Classroom. Matt Miller of Ditch That Textbook has created a brief tutorial.
Last, but not least... 3D Toontastic. Google bought out Toontastic a while ago and has just released a new app for digital storytelling- 3D Toontastic. The really cool thing about this- it works on "some" chromebooks. I haven't tried it out on the chromebooks at HES- but my personal chromebook is on the list. It is also an android and iOS app. And- it's free.
So- if you have the time- and the right device- check it out!
This coming Monday we will once again celebrate the life and accomplishments of Martin Luther King Jr. My hope is that we can truly take the time to renew the commitments which many have made to ensure that all lives matter, that each of our coworkers, students, and community members feel valued. The civil rights movement as characterized by Dr. King and many others, demonstrated ways to take positive actions on our beliefs, which still ring true today.
The symbaloo has links to help students begin to research the life and ideas of Dr. King. Below that you will find a list of resources for students as well as lesson plans for teachers.
Overview of DitchSummit
I spent some time over break listening to and learning from the speakers Matt Miller interviewed on his DitchSummit. Some I had heard of and follow online and a few others I had never seen/heard before.
A couple of take-aways for me: Noah Giesel's "Don't Get Ready, Get Started" resonated with me, because like most of you, I tend to over plan and can be tentative about jumping into a new project without really knowing all the pitfalls/benefits ahead of time. Over the last 18 months or so, I have been doing "breakouts" with lots of different upper elementary classes. I had never done one as a teacher or as a participant before, but was totally intrigued by the idea. Luckily, I have a few brave teachers who let me try it out. It has been mostly a success, some better than others. But, my lesson learned- just do it. I can never anticipate everything that might happen- but "nothing will go wrong, if I do nothing at all", theory does not work well in practice. Here's a quote from Noah “Don’t get ready. Get started. Let’s do this. Be humble enough to be up front with our students to say, ‘This might not be perfect. This probably won’t be perfect. We’re going to make it better together.’” He went on to talk about preparing kids for the future. Worksheets won't cut it. "But jobs with info that can be Googled are not high-paying jobs. By playing it safe, we’re creating a huge danger for our young people’s futures.”
One other presenter, (they were all good), who gave so many great examples, was Paul Solarz. Paul is the author of Learn Like a Pirate. He is a fifth grade teacher who actively shares his and his students' work online.
Here's a quote from a review of Paul's book: "Would your class fall apart without you? Could your students learn if you didn't speak for an entire day? In Learn Like a PIRATE, Paul Solarz shares methods you can use to create a student-led classroom -- and prepare your students for a lifetime of self-led learning."
- Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind
I am not a big fan of buzz words- and the "student-led classroom" is right up there with mindset, and 21st century learning... What does that mean, anyway? But Paul makes the buzz words real. He gave example, after example of how he does this in his classroom. He also talks about all the things that teachers worry about- covering the curriculum, classroom management, grades, test, etc. You can follow him on twitter, check out his book site online- great info in those links- or check out what he is doing in his classroom. Paul advocates his "marble theory" of intelligence. This is a brief summary: "It’s a bit of a metaphor for how we are, intelligence-wise. I believe that
all of us are born with the exact same number of marbles in our brain -- 1 billion (an arbitrary number). There are also thousands and thousands of Dixie cups. Each marble represents your ability to do something....We all have the same amount. It’s just about how you distribute them. In groups in the classroom, we need to ask, “How have my classmates distributed their marbles?” to determine their strengths. "
My initial take- creating this type of community in the classroom takes time and commitment- but it is well worth it for both the teacher and the students. You can join the LearnLAP PLN by signing up on this spreadsheet.
A couple of INFOGRAPHICS...
These two images came through my twitter feed over the break and both are worth sharing. One is from the educatorstechnology blog and purports to show you the "9 fundamental skills for the 21st century teacher". First of... there is no "list" that can show you this... can we put flexible, curious, empathetic on there too? But, these are skills that are useful. Some of the tools that are listed, I would recommend, a few I have never heard of... So- here's your table of skills.
The other infographic that I wanted to share is the ultimate cheatsheet for critical thinking from globalcitizen.org. I like the questions on this one- broad, versatile, can be used with just about any age group or topic.
Looking for new Ideas- try #GAFEchat
#gafechat is a twitter chat. You do not have to have a twitter account to follow a hashtag and learn from other educators. Twitter chats are easy to follow on participatelearning. You may surprise yourself! Try it! #gafechat is every other Tuesday from 9-10 pm. The GAFE- or google for education chat is fun- and you always learn something new. Here are the questions for tomorrow: