Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Math Homework v. Eating Broccoli

Which would you choose?

Recently I watched a video from Conceptua Math about their software. I was struck by the statistics they share and the concept they put forth. Isn't it time we consider changing the way we teach. Except for projected images many things I see in the classrooms where I work are the kinds of things that occured when I was the student! When I was a student I couldn't bring my phone in my pocket to school and there was no such thing as a backpack to carry your books - we carried book bags and rushed home to use our rotary dialed phones!

I know this is a loaded question and I realize that change comes slowly - and some things have changed. Students are collaborating online, teachers share microblogs with students, we tell digital stories and there isn't an 8th grader who hasn't tested their skill as a video producer - but teachers are still at the front of the room teaching. How can we change this? How can we create a blended, inquiry-based classroom setting? What do you think that classroom would look like? In my mind the lessons are thematic, concepts are presented and students research them using the teacher as a mentor and guide for their explorations. These students present final products that teach other students in their classroom and globally about their theme. What kind of themes can you imagine? What would your classroom look like?

Saturday, January 26, 2013

I Can See Clearly Now...

Evernote offers some really cool tools that I simply love. The first that I want to share with you is Evernote Clearly.

Evernote Clearly is an add-on that you can use with your Chrome and Firefox browsers and once installed it will take away all the distraction on a web page and allow you to customize the view.

Imagine that it gets even better - you can select the font size AND there is a text to speech option. The advantages in education are numerous.

Try it today you will love it, too! Use this link to review the Guide to using Clearly and install it today. Once you try it you will love you students to use it too!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Curating Education Apps the Easy Way.

Recently I started exploring edshelf and I must admit - it is addictive, easy and so very useful. Edshelf is a website that collects education app information. The apps are listed by categories and they are reviewed, sorted by free and paid and once you read the review and find something you think you will like - there is a link to take you there.

From their press copy, "EdShelf, an Imaginek12 startup, for example tries to address the discovery and filter problem for teachers looking at ed tech with a more Yelp-like approach. It relies on reviews from teachers who supply grade level and topic information, as well as additional notes on the context in which they used the software."

I found myself checking out new ideas and of course, selecting those apps I am very fond of using. Once I completed curating, I used the embedding code and shared this on my school website with my friends and colleagues. 

This is an exciting tool that is sure to inspire much collaboration and sharing around preferred apps. Check it out today.

Take a look at my profile: http://edshelf.com/profile/lisafusco