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Posts tagged ‘technology integration’

Where Are the Jobs & Racial Dot Maps. What could you do with this?

I’ve been to the Fast Company network of sites in the past but I need to learn to spend more time over there, uh . . . researching possible post topics. Yeah. That’s it. Not wasting time reading interesting articles about how Batman videos have evolved over time. I’m over there investing valuable minutes tracking down very appropriate articles directly tied to education related subjects.

Seriously.

Okay. A few articles may be tough to defend education-wise but you’ve got four channels – Exist, Design, Create, Video – to choose from and you can find a ton of interesting reads here. If nothing else, you’ve got some great writing prompts.

A recent research trip to the Exist channel uncovered two of my favorite things: a map and another map.

The most recent map claims to highlight every single job in America with a variety of different colors. The map plots out each job with an actual dot in four simplified categories. Factory and trade jobs are red, professional jobs are blue, health care, education, and government jobs are green, and service jobs like retail are yellow.” It is interactive, allowing you to zoom and scroll from one place to another, providing a chance to see patterns both small and large. Read more

Create learners, not widgets

Podstock 2015 is in the books. And like all previous Podstock tech conferences, 2015 was three days of learning, conversation, pinewood derby cars, tech ed, great food, giveaways, and MakerSpace goodness.

Here’s the one thing I learned from my three days:

There is no silver bullet in education. There’s a ton of wrong ways to do school. But not one right way.

The answer to great teaching and learning is never just one thing. It’s not just one strategy or program or philosophy or book or website. The answer is whatever works for you in your situation. The tool that works for you might not work for me. The website that drop dead saves my bacon every time does nothing for your kids.

I’m also starting to realize it’s even more than that. It’s not just different tools and websites. It can also be past and present. Old and new. That’s why I was so excited about the Podstock 2015 Steampunk conference theme.

STEAMpunk is, well . . . it’s a bit hard to describe. Basically it’s modern technology – iPads, computers, robotics, air travel – powered by steam and set in the 1800s. Sounds wierd but so much fun. And it fits our thinking at the Podstock conference about STEAM and STEM and Makerspaces. Steampunk takes the best of both worlds, old and new, and combines them into something completely different.

Nathan-steampunkClassic Steampunk keeps the traditional stuff that’s good. Adds the new stuff that’s good. And together it’s awesome.

You add a cool “steam-powered” robotic arm to TV crime fighter Richard Castle and you get television Steampunk.

That’s what’s so cool for me at Podstock. You always get the best of both worlds: Teachers who care about kids, who are passionate about learning, and use practical research-based strategies combined with the new software and hardwire goodies that support high levels of learning. Combining experience, skilled teachers with new technology and tools.

It’s educational SteamPunk.

But any quality learning experience should also generate a few questions. My questions for the week: Read more

Hacking #iste2015: Just me and 18,000 of my closest friends

I’ve attended and presented at a lot of edtech conferences. Heck, ESSDACK hosts its very own edtech goodness called Podstock. But for a lot of reasons, I’ve never made it to ISTE. I get it. It’s big. Loud. Lots of sessions. Lots of receptions. Lots of giveaways. Lots of social media. It’s like the Super Bowl, World Series, and World Cup of edtech all rolled into one big event. Did I already say that it’s big?

And for someone who tends to the left of the introvert scale like me, there’s nothing like 18,000 other people all trying to get to the same place at the same time as I am to really get me jacked.

I kid cause I love. Read more

Tip of the Week: Using Flipboard as an instructional, learning, PLC, everything in one, swiss army knife tool

Using instructional technology can make us feel super smart and 60 seconds later . . . the dullest person on the planet.

And right now, I’m feeling a little bit of both. Last week, I was pushing Flipboard as a a great way to curate and organize a wide range of online resources. “Find topics, follow topics, learn tons of new things.” Every day, I ran across useful and interesting articles, ideas, and materials.

But I’ve been focused too much on using Flipboard as part of my own personal learning and haven’t given it much thought as an instructional tool. At least until this morning. Cyndi Danner-Kuhn, K-State prof and fellow tech trainer, asked me to contribute to a Flipboard magazine she created for her ed tech class.

And the light finally went on.

Duh. Read more

7 social media strategies teachers need to use and intentionally teach

I had the chance to work with the awesome Dr. Curtis Chandler yesterday during the ESSDACK Chromebook conference at MidAmerica Nazarene University, sharing a few ideas for teaching and learning in a Googley world. And, no, neither of us are completely sure that Googley is an actual word. But if Google is using the word, so can we. We defined Googley very simply – the world that we teach in, and that your kids live in, revolve around constant access to information and to other people. So what should education look like in that sort of environment? We focused on three basic ideas:

  • Grapple with big ideas
  • Focus on the process
  • Be intentional about using social media

Curtis took the social media section and rocked it. I loved that he started the conversation by quoting Mark Twain: Read more

New Google Classroom update: Little things that make it a big deal

The Google folks have been busy – and it seems as if they’ve been listening to teachers. Today, a few handy updates to Google Classroom were announced. If you’re not using Classroom, you really need to take a few minutes, perhaps, to come to your senses. It is a handy time saver and teaching tool that’s free, accessible anywhere, easy to use, and did you know it’s free? The biggest update is the ability to now Read more

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