Just as I began exploring it, my Twitter feed alerted me to the tragic events in Japan. Without much planning, I began using Storify to collect material about the earthquake / tsunami from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and other news feeds.
While I kept my narrative to just a few sentences, users can add additional comments to each element. My finished story appeared on the Storify site and I used the embed code to also post it on my blog.
As an advocate of document based instruction, I realized that Storify has great potential in the classroom. It's a easy tool for teachers and students to gather a variety of social media and web content. It would be especially useful way for students to critically evaluate web and social media content. As a historian I also think if it as a first, rough draft of history - a social document for future generations.
~ I regret that my first use of Storify was to document such a tragic event. My prayers go out to all those impacted by the earthquake and tsunami. I hope to be able to tell happier stories in the future.
This Storify essay is a first, rough draft of history - a social document for future historians. Text, image, video and tweets from the initial reaction to the event. (March 10, 2011 GMT-8) ~ I regret that my first use of Storify was to document such a tragic event. My prayers go out to all those impacted by the earthquake and tsunami. I hope to be able to tell happier stories in the future.
During this summer program students entering eighth grade were coached by an intern in ways to investigate and talk about the math in their lives. Here's the 4 strategies the students used:
1. Look for math in real life - Nic ponders the permutations in picking out his clothes.
2. Frame your experiences as word problems - Shanice eagerly monitors price changes in a coat she wants to buy. (Spoiler alert: she gets it!)
3. Try out different ways to solve problems. Nik crafts a way to determine his baseball batting average.
4. Explain and share your thinking. Shaniece describes what they do when one them gets stuck on a problem.
Watch the video to hear what they discovered in their own words. "I see math when I'm walking down the street.... I see math in myself."
For more information on the project click here.
Hat tip to Matt Karlsen
"The Cameraman" - From Cartoonist Chris Ware, animator John Kuramoto and Ira Glass of This American Life. First grade teacher, Jeff Potter tells Ira about an art project and the impact of personal "technology" in the classroom.
"The camera really changed the way we behaved.... We lost our humanity."
Were the cameras really responsible for the student insensitively to the fight? Was banning the cameras the only alternative the teachers had? I don't know. I wasn't there.
But it does strike me that the cameras were also a catalyst to creativity, collaboration, and powerful student engagement. Is this a parable about balancing the benefits and liabilities of cell phones and other student personal technology in the classroom?
Hat tip to David Kwasigroh
This week I'm heading out to work with intermediate (grade 4-6) teachers on strategies to assist struggling readers. We'll focus on three core skill area - defining, summarizing and comparing using my guide to "18 Strategies for Struggling Readers." Plus I'll introduce some great websites that they can use with the strategies - the new digital literacy meets the old text literacy.
There are two key elements in each skill area that can help students construct meaning and build background knowledge.
I've selected some Web 2.0 sites that will enable students to use the strategies in a variety online settings. I've picked free sites that have easy learning curves. For example, we will use One Word to negotiate meaning through images, explore summarizing text structures with Five Card Flickr and design comparisons with Wordle and Books nGram Viewer.
Working with words
Working with words and images
Kid-friendly search sites
For more ways to use Web 2.0 sites in the classroom
download a free PDF at my post
"87 Free Web 2.0 Projects For the K-12 Classroom"
Image credit flickr/Mike Licht
What an uncanny prediction of contemporary American education - digitized information being force-fed into bored students. Looks like a vision of one of those computerized test prep programs guaranteed to bring up the standardized test scores.
But I'm not sure - do you think that's educational savior - Bill Gates, or an overpaid public school teacher unwilling to give away his collective bargaining rights?
For another satirical look at the current education scene see yesterday's post -
"John Stewart "Teachers are Destroying America"
Click image to enlarge
For another uncanny prediction, see my post "First Google Map Discovered - Created in 1652"
Thanks Jon for satirizing the latest attempt to pit one segment of working Americans against another.
"The greed that led you into the profession?" I started teaching for $6700 a year and got to spend my summers standing on a ladder - always hoping I could finish the last of my paint jobs before heading back into the classroom.
Enjoy the clip - when it comes to education, there's little to laugh about these days.
For another satire on the current education scene see my post "Vintage 1910 French Postcard Predicts Bill Gates and NCLB."
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Crisis in Dairyland - Message for Teachers|
Regular readers of my blog will recognize how unique this post is. It's far from what I normally write about. But I feel compelled to tell a story in the hopes that I can help spread the word for a friend in need. Isabella, my next door neighbor, is fighting for her life against cancer. You can help with a donation, tweet or status update.
Here's her story.
Isabella Blatchford, a native Alaskan Sugpiaq Indian, was well on her way to creating a sustainable seafood business. (She had already sold to Wolfgang Puck and Emeril Lagasse!) She saw it not only as a viable business, but a means to support her Sugpiaq heritage and honor her tribal elders - the last handful of Sugpiaq speakers. In February 2009, she discovered she had Stage 4 cancer. Using a blend of standard and alternative medical treatments, she was able to beat the odds for the last few years.
However in February 2011 her cancer tumor markers went back up rapidly, and her doctors are have told her that it is time for a quick change in her method of treatment. She has the opportunity to travel to Mexico for treatment. She is in need of $7,000 by April 20th, 2011 in order to obtain treatment.
I used my limited editing skills to make this video from some local Portland newscasts. Her brother Richard, created a website to accept donations - http://www.bellasfund.org
Update: Here's a story and powerful video from the Oregonian An Alaska native who lives in Portland battles cancer while working to save a tribe's language (April 13, 2011)
Isabella needs your help. Even a small donation will be appreciated. And you can help her get the word out - contribute a Twitter link or a Facebook status update.
Thank you for anything you can do.
Photo: Torsten Kjellstrand/The Oregonian
This post wraps up my work as guest blogger at the Instructional Technology Strategies Conference 2/20-22, 2011 in Portland, Oregon. It was my first ITSC conference, but it won't be my last. A very impressive line up of facilitators and knowledgeable participants. I'll be back next year! Enjoy the Prezi.
See more of my ITSC11 posts.
More of my Prezis.
I'm pleased to be invited as a guest blogger to the Instructional Technology Strategies Conference 2/20-22 in Portland, Oregon. Here's the first installment.
Big hat tip to Mike Gwaltney who helped gather content. Be sure to stop by his blog "Democratizing Knowledge" for more ITSC 11 coverage.
I'm pleased to be invited as a guest blogger to the Instructional Technology Strategies Conference 2/20-22 in Portland, Oregon. To help live and virtual attendees follow the backchannel here's two Twitter visualizers based on the the conference hashtag #ITSC11.
Also - here's my Prezi intro to Portland.
(2/27/11 Note) Since this visualization is time sensitive, I have posted a short video screen shot.
Flowing graph of the words most frequently used in the latest 1000 tweets marked with the hashtag #itsc11
View full screen
I'm pleased to be invited as a guest blogger to the Instructional Technology Strategies Conference (ITSC) Feb 20-22. Here's my Prezi introduction to my adopted city of Portland, Oregon. Looking forward to meeting all of you.
Stay tuned for more of my ITSC11 posts.
Don't forget to conference tweet use hashtag #ITSC11
More of my Prezis
I'm pleased to be invited as a guest blogger to the Instructional Technology Strategies Conference (ITSC) Feb 20-22 in Portland, Oregon. More I'll be there, but you better hurry up and register. Registration closes on Wed 2/16!
ITSC 2011 (twitter/ITSCPDX) is hands-on conference with a focus on the practical use of technology in the classroom - workshops are small sessions led by facilitators, not presenters. Plus, I'm available to lead Portland brewpub tours!
Here's a great "ITSC11" SlideShare by Sacha Chua: "The Shy Connector’s Guide to Getting Ready for Conference Awesomeness" Hope to see you at ITSC11 in PDX!
Goal: I was working with a team of principals and district administrators who wanted to provide more consistency in their teacher observations and look for strategies for using observations to assist teachers in reflecting on their instructional approaches. We first met at district office before going out to observe a few classrooms and share our impressions. I thought it would be useful (and fun) to warm up with Seinfeld's disastrous history lesson.
While there was little positives to find in the Seinfeld lesson - the activity got us thinking about ways in which an administrator can give teachers feedback that is less judgmental and more likely to cause teachers to reflect on their lesson and instructional approaches.
Sample judgmental admin question: "You say that you want the students to 'think about history' and forget about the details, so why did you start asking a series of content questions on material they had already failed on the test?"
Similar theme explored in a non-judgmental, reflective tone: "What are some of the methods you like to use to gather feedback on student mastery of content? How do you use the information to design a lesson?"
It was a great icebreaker and loads of fun for everyone. Later in the day we observed some actual classrooms taught by teachers who had volunteered to host us. We came back together as a group and compared our impressions using the district evaluation instrument. We compared our results to calibrate the observation tool. Our final activity was to develop some feedback to give the teachers who hosted our visits. We crafted comments that were more reflective than judgmental. The volunteer teachers' principal later delivered the feedback to the teachers.
Everyone thought it was valuable session. I hope you can find some use or ways to modify.
How to set up a Fishbowl discussion group Download Fishbowl-discussion 58kb pdf