Sunday, November 29, 2009

We Are All Technology Teachers by Kim Cofino

We Are All Technology Teachers by Kim Cofino

Seven or eight years ago at MSMS we implemented a reading program in which all teachers became reading teachers for 30 minutes a day.  I couldn't help but think about the analogy Kim Cofino makes in the article linked above between ESL teachers and teachers of technology.  It's exactly what MSMS did with reading teachers.  As difficult as it was, and still is, for all teachers to become reading teachers, we all need to make the shift to become technology teachers and truly integrate technology into everyday learning in the classroom.

This seems to be quite the order considering how fast technology changes and the pedagogical shifts needed to make this happen.  The good news for MSMS is that much of the infrastructure is in place to allow this shift to happen.  However, without training and support for that infrastructure, we're struggling to implement the essential tools of 21st Century teaching and learning.  A good bit of time, training, and support was provided to teachers to help them become reading teachers.  We need to do the same for technology if we want all teachers to become teachers of technology.

Posted using ShareThis

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Searching for Presentations Just Got Easier

After countless hours of searching for powerpoint presentations related to Earth and Physical Sciences last year, I've come across a site that proves to be hopeful as a powerpoint search engine. The site searches powerpoints on the web by topic and provides an array of files specific to the query without having to weed through the results looking for specific file types. 

Check it out.
Most authors on the web are the sharing type.  Still, it's appropriate to give credit to an author when you use their work in whole or part. 

Sunday, November 15, 2009

What Do Your Students Say About You?

I just finished reading an excellent post by Paul Bogush, a colleague of mine who teaches in Connecticut.  His post reminds me how important it is to never lose sight of the big picture of education and the impact we have as teachers with every comment and action we make.  Our little idiosyncrasies, our grading policies, and our words shape the children we come into contact with on a daily basis.

Paul's post points to the number of hours a middle/high school teacher spends with a student over the course of a school year (170+ hours.)  How do you want to shape each and every child you teach/touch?

I'd like to pass on the opportunity to add to the slideshow on Paul's blog and found below.
Just click on the link and follow the directions.
1-Click on an empty slide to the left.
2-Click on Insert—>then image
3-Select the image from your computer or the url
4-Flickr images need to be saved and uploaded
5-Place any personal information you would like under the image
6-Click save and close

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Blog Commenting

Commenting on other blogs is a skill easily attained by following a few simple practices.  Take time to talk about these practices with your students and refer to them as you review blog comments together as a class.

Be nice to each other.   Don't be mean to other commenters.  Even bloggers have feelings.  We're putting ourselves out there for the world to read our thoughts.

Connect to the post.  Have a point when you comment on someone's blog.  Don't ramble. 

Read the whole post before you comment.   Don't just comment on the comments.  This will help you write a thorough and thoughtful comment.

White space is your friend.  It's hard enough to read from a computer screen.  Use short sentences, and short paragraphs.  Write in an active voice.  At least try to be grammatically correct.

Here are a few comment starters that can help raise questions and provide useful feedback for bloggers.

  • This made me think about…….
  • I wonder why…….
  • Your writing made me form an opinion about…….
  • This post is relevant because…….
  • Your writing made me think that we should…….
  • I wish I understood why…….
  • This is important because…….
  • Another thing to consider is…….
  • I was reminded that…….
  • I can relate to this…….
  • This makes me think of…….
  • I discovered……
  • I don’t understand…….
  • I found myself wondering…….
Thanks to Edublog Insights for these starters.
For more thoughts and ideas on blog commenting visit Langwitches Blog