Friday, January 24, 2014

Twenty-First Century Learning in Action at Chi-Hi

We've heard of the 4 C's of 21st century learning. If you haven't, don't worry, you can Google it. I heard words just like that from an encouraging English teacher this week. Knowing what the 4 C's are is easier than incorporating them into a 15-minute class activity, but Pam Bowe did just that in her English 9B class.
Collaboration- students worked in groups of 2-3 to read a section of an article on theaters through the ages
Creativity - students found an image to represent the information they read. They added it to a visual timeline.
Critical Thinking - students had to summarize their part of the article into three main points; determine an appropriate date for the timeline based on all of the given temporal information in the article, like which century it occurred.
Communication- after working in partnerships and adding events to a collaborative visual timeline with the other groups, partners shared responsibility for presenting their findings orally to the class.
None of the students had used Timetoast, a visual time lining tool, before, so they also discussed and problem-solved some technology work flows while experiencing the content.
And, there you have it: an activity based on common core state standards that incorporated the 4 C's of 21st Century learning. (And, I heard through the grapevine two other teachers are going to try this activity in their classes as well).

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Creating Gmail Templates

This video will walk you through how to create a template in Gmail. You might use templates to quickly compose frequent emails that include similar information. Gmail templates could also be useful for students learning to write formal emails.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Creating Contact Groups in Gmail

With the switch to Gmail, you may be missing some of your email groups.  You can re-create them in Gmail pretty easily as long as the people are in your contact list.  Click here for the video to show you how, or find the video on our Google Video Resources page on the Google Tutorials menu of the Tech Coaches website.

You may also be missing the district wide email lists that we had been using.  Dara has been diligently re-creating those as well.  The new list is available to you with this link when you are signed in to your Google account.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Presenting Keynotes Without the iPad!

We've often heard (and said) that the Apple devices we have on carts in our schools are called "i"Pads, not "we"Pads. They are designed to be personal devices and we've placed them in a cart, created check out procedures and shared them between students. This is a stumbling block on the way to more personalized learning, but it serves it's purpose and there are many obstacles we can work around if we think about it hard enough.

One of the most rewarding tasks we do as technology integration coaches is figuring out how to realize a teacher's dream outcome. I worked with Chelsea Anderson on some project planning today - she mapped out the unwrapped standards she intended to reach toward with her students and explained the content she hoped to incorporate. What happened next was she put her teaching pedagogy, knowledge and content expertise together with my technology skills and expertise and we discovered something that I hadn't thought of before.

Chelsea wanted her students to be able to do research and create a presentation on the iPads. She has the cart checked out for three days, long enough to produce the project, but probably not present it. So, we developed a workflow that could work for other teachers as well:

1. Students research and create a presentation in Keynote
2. Students upload their presentation as a Power Point to the Google Drive app
3. Students share their  Power Point with Chelsea
4. Chelsea clicks the box next to student's Power Point in her Google Drive and clicks More->Download
5. Power Point opens the presentation on Chelsea's desktop PC so that the presentation can be projected in the classroom for sharing.

If you'd like help with this process, please contact Cara Schueller or Sarah Radcliffe