learning + technology + innovation

I did it and I survived

I did it and I survived

If you’re new here, you may want to subscribe to this blog via e-mail or our RSS feed. We also are each on Twitter (see sidebar on right). Thanks for visiting!  So I am literally 9 minutes removed from my first “big stage” presentation at ISTE,…

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When will the bucket tip?

When will the bucket tip?

At our local pool they recently put in a new play area. There’s a large bucket with a stream of water pouring into it, and every 15 minutes or so it reaches the tipping point, where it will flip and drench all the screaming, playing…

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Summer of Code

Summer of Code

It’s Summer of Code at our house… Phase 1 (Group) Everyone works through Course 2, Course 3, and Course 4 at Code.org to ensure that we have basic conceptual understanding of key terms and ideas. I have a teacher account and can print certificates of…

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TICL

TICL

Last week, I was fortunate to attend and present at TICL in Storm Lake, Iowa. The collaborative efforts of Northwest AEA and Prairie Lakes AEA converge to create a three day conference on Buena Vista University’s beautiful campus. I appreciated the enthusiasm of keynote Tony…

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When I Designed Units…

When I Designed Units…

The list of my considerations is in no particular order… 1. What standards do I need to address? Concepts? -The answer to this helped me focus and be intentional and #4, #5. 2. What do my students care about? -The answer to this helped create…

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Living Your Legacy – Ella Mozzarella

Living Your Legacy – Ella Mozzarella

This spring I started a new video series, to be published quarterly, highlighting the amazing things that students across the globe are doing. For my summer video I had the opportunity to do an interview with the most amazing little girl from New Jersey, and I’m…

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Guest Blog: Susan Oehlertz, PAC MAKER DAYS, Full Steam Ahead

Guest Blog: Susan Oehlertz, PAC MAKER DAYS, Full Steam Ahead

The magic and power behind PAC’s Maker Days, read about it HERE. 

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#JJAProject Capture, Create, and Share

#JJAProject Capture, Create, and Share

Thanks to my treasured PLN, I learned of #jjaproject. During the summer months (June, July, August), share pictures to the hashtag using your favorite social media channels. I will be posting to Instagram and Twitter. Feel free to edit and add text. I plan to…

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Worth the Conversation: Screenshots of Instagram Pics/Art/Law/Money

Worth the Conversation: Screenshots of Instagram Pics/Art/Law/Money

Reporter, Jessica Contrara, published in the Washington Post’s Style Blog: This month, painter and photographer Richard Prince reminded us that what you post is public, and given the flexibility of copyright laws, can be shared — and sold — for anyone to see. As a part…

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The roars of approval as we revert back to what we’ve always done

The roars of approval as we revert back to what we’ve always done

George Couros said: Sometimes when the statement is made, “it is not about technology, it is about pedagogy”, you then hear the roars of approval, and off we go on our merry way with nothing changing for many students. In reality sometimes it is about…

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(Instagram) You’re so Vain…or Not so Much.

(Instagram) You’re so Vain…or Not so Much.

A few months ago while traveling for work, I heard a morning weatherman rationalize why he did not have @instagram. Of course, I tweeted. The weatherman is just misinformed or uninformed. His enlightenment comes from all of us revealing the benefits of connection. Valued member…

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As I Lay Dying/End of Year Classroom Packing

As I Lay Dying/End of Year Classroom Packing

Almost two decades have passed since I read Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying. As I considered the end of the year traditional classroom routine this evening, the reading came to mind. As I Lay Dying is more complex and involved than I will explain…a woman…

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That’s not a given

That’s not a given

I loved hearing Will Richardson say at the Iowa Association of School Boards conference last November that ‘curriculum is a strategy.’ Because he’s right. Standards are a strategy. Bell schedules are a strategy. Bubble-sheet testing of low-level recall is a strategy. School calendars, grade levels, siloed…

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What if? ~ Transform Learning for Students

What if? ~ Transform Learning for Students

A month ago I was approached by a middle school principal who was interested in having a philosophical conversation with her staff about transformational ideas for changing teaching and learning.  She started with a few what ifs and asked me if I could find or…

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The problem with ‘any time, any place, any path, any pace’

The problem with ‘any time, any place, any path, any pace’

In most online courses and/or ‘adaptive learning systems’ … Students do low-level work at times that are convenient. Students do low-level work from places that are convenient. Students do low-level work on their own, unique path. Students do low-level work at their own, unique pace….

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The backwards bicycle [VIDEO]

The backwards bicycle [VIDEO]

What a backwards bicycle can teach us about learning… Fascinating. Hat tip: Will Richardson [cross-posted at Dangerously Irrelevant]

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Failing on an Island

Failing on an Island

Failure in education is a pretty common topic. Whether it’s a negative connotation: failing schools, failing kids, or a positive connotation: First Attempt In Learning, failing forward, it’s hard to go a day without the topic coming up. I want to bring you another facet…

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#Notanicebucket challenge but a #stoppretending challenge!

#Notanicebucket challenge but a #stoppretending challenge!

When it comes to education, we have to stop pretending… that semester/trimester tests are preparing students for college exams. that students’ homework is not complete and of poor quality because students are lazy or don’t understand the concept. that the best way for students to…

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Challenge: We Have to Stop Pretending

Challenge: We Have to Stop Pretending

Tagged by my dear friend, Shaelynn Farnsworth, who was tagged by Beth Still, who took Scott McLeod’s challenge, which asked educators to create a top 5 list of things to “Stop Pretending” (in education) I offer my response: 1. Choosing the one right answer equals understanding. 2….

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Challenge: 4 Variations of the Same #nationalpoetrymonth

Challenge: 4 Variations of the Same #nationalpoetrymonth

Processing through poetry provides insight. Poetry breaks rules. My thoughts can run into one another as people do in a crowded shopping center. My sentences can really be phrases joined by dashes and what ifs and conjunctions and semicolons and…Words are not confined by subject…

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