Click here for my infographic!

First, thank you to everyone that gave me feedback on my first draft.  I took everyone’s advice & made some changes. This assignment was a sneaky one! I had no idea the amount of time it would take me to complete this.  Thankfully there were templates!  I can see how infographics can have a big impact when you are trying to share facts with the world.

On the venngage site there were templates for resumes! I don’t think the world is ready for infographic resumes…unless you’re applying for a tech job 😉

Digitally Competent Teachers

I came across this article today through my feedly account.  This article had a beautiful infographic that accompanied the article. According to Daily Genius you are a digitally competent teacher if:

  • You can integrate digital skills into everyday life
  • You have a balanced attitude
  • You are open to using and trying new stuff
  • You are a digital communicator
  • You know how to do a digital assessment
  • You understand and respect privacy
  • You are a digital citizen

I really appreciate each point here. I do think that the third bullet is so important.  I have a personal philosophy when it comes to technology, “The computer can’t win.”  When I am trying new things, I flat out refuse to let the computer win.  Does that mean I always accomplish what I want?  Yes.  Does it always come out the way I intended/envisioned?  No.  When I hit a technological road block, I immediately begin looking for a detour.  I ask myself, “How can I do this?” 

I encourage anyone who struggles with technology to not give up & keep  on trying!

 

10 Ways to Ensure Parents Won’t Need to Ask ‘What Did You Do at School Today?’

I always tell the parents of my students that one of the main reasons I keep a blog is to let the parents know what we do at school. All you parents out there, how many times have you asked the question, “What did you do at school today?” Only to be answered with, “Ummm I dunno.”  I don’t have kids, but I was a kid once and clearly remember driving my dad crazy with my “I dunno,” answer.

In this Alison Anderson lists 10 ways to help keep parents in the know. I feel inspired by a few of the ideas. She suggests starting a classroom instagram account. She suggested assigning a student to be the “instagramer” for the day. I really like this idea and know that students would enjoy this role. I have thought about doing this before but will definitely do this next year. For any teacher considering this, be sure to obtain the proper permission for photographing and sharing images of students. At the beginning of every school year, my district sends out permission slips for students to be photographed. In addition to the permission slip, I also tell parents about where I use the photos and give parents the option of opting out (so far no one has).

Anderson also suggests setting up a classroom youtube channel. Students can make videos and post them to the web. I really like the idea of having a weekly round up. Doing something like this encompasses many learning standards (think listening and speaking and writing). I’m thinking this will also be on my to do list next year!

The last tip I’ll discuss is making iMovie trailers for upcoming school or classroom events. I really love this idea. For those of you that don’t have an Apple computer or simply want to try something else, I’d like to introduce you to Animoto. Animoto is a website for creating videos. You can set up a free educator account. I think its very intuitive and easy to use. I created a video as a hook for a large project I was starting with my class. You can watch it by clicking here.

After reading her article, come back to this post and let me know what you think!

 

Questions About Communication

This article came to me through my feedly account.  Lyn Hilt writes a blog called Learning in Technicolor. In this article she explores a district’s decision to move towards more digital communication.  She takes different perspectives into mid as she writes letters to a superintendent, principal, teacher and parent voicing her questions.

She hits on several important issues such as equal access to information, crisis communication, school and classroom websites, and learning communities.

After reading this article, I looked at my own classroom blog. Which to be honest, I’ve been neglecting the past couple of weeks as school winds down. I think I definitely have a lot of positives but can also see room to grow. I’m excited to incorporate more things into my blog that will extend the learning community that exists in my classroom.

ThingLink

Have you ever tried thinglink? It’s a way of making images interactive. I can see many possible uses for the classroom and presentations.

Using Thinglink I turned my PKM graphic into an interactive image you can “touch.” When you are looking at the image you will see small circles next to each of the icons. When you hover over the circle, a description for each part of my PKM will appear. When you click on it, it will take you to a specific example.

Enjoy!