Expanding your school’s technological capabilities can be both complex and costly. You need a partner who takes the time to understand your goals and builds customized solutions that meet your needs and stay in your budget. You need PCMG.…Read More
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Expecting teachers to go it alone hurts school improvement. It’s time to reframe the debate
The myth that good teachers have the Midas touch and therefore don’t need curriculum programs has been around for decades. This myth paints teachers as curricular experts who are best positioned to create instructional plans tailored to particular students. It also reflects the prevalence of low-quality and uninspired textbook series that have dominated the market throughout the latter half of the 20th century. Some packages simply did not have much to offer, while others talked down to teachers, as the oft-used phrase “teacher-proof curriculum” suggests.
The perception that good teachers reject textbooks and design their own curriculum has been a persistent belief of educators over the years. Researchers have long noted unease about using teacher’s guides among many teachers, regardless of whether the curriculum in question was a traditional textbook from the 1980s1, 2 or a more innovative program reflecting the vision outlined in the widely adopted National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Standards of the 1990s.3, 4
Under the current era of the Common Core State Standards, this myth is playing out in some districts and schools in a different way. Teachers are encouraged to use the new standards as their guide for what to teach and are expected to gather and develop instructional resources to determine how. Curriculum resources of any kind are viewed as unnecessary, redundant to what teachers already do or should be doing.…Read More
Mystery Skype calls are a great way to connect with the world
[Ed. note: Katrina Keene will give a related session on Mystery Skype at ISTE 2015 on Monday June 29.]
For centuries, schools have sat in silos. Teachers and students were capable of communicating only with those inside their own buildings. It was at one time not only unattainable, but unthinkable to collaborate and communicate with outside classrooms. The technology for these types of interactions had not yet been introduced to education—and even if they were, cost and practicality were barriers to implementation.
I have been an active user of “video conferencing” since the early 90’s, when this type of technology was usually seen in large businesses or colleges that were fortunate to have the funds to provide the equipment to make use of such a progressive form of communication.…Read More
Kelly Maher, a mathematics and technology teacher and technology coordinator, shares several infographics generators to help illustrate complex information
Human beings are visual and adept at identifying patterns and trends quickly. Therefore, infographics often aid our understanding of otherwise dense, multifaceted, or complicated material.
Anyone can use infographics to further their understanding of a topic, and you can also create your own for use in teaching or presentations. Here are some infographics generators to consider the next time you need to teach a difficult concept or illustrate intricate information.…Read More
Great and effective PD usually has these characteristics
For nearly a dozen years I’ve traveled to various schools and districts to deliver professional development workshops and presentations. Over the years, I’ve also sat in on many ed-tech workshops and presentations at schools, conferences, and “unconferences.”
These experiences have taught me that if our goal is to create fundamental change in classrooms, professional development workshops should ultimately devote less time to the “nuts and bolts” of technology and more time addressing pedagogy and best practices. Technology, in and of itself, doesn’t necessarily change learning. So, the primary focus of any workshop must be the educator’s vision of a technology, and not the technology itself.
My EdTechTeacher colleague (and HarvardX researcher) Justin Reich and I believe that if we want teachers to integrate exemplary practices and lead and inspire the next generation, then we must prepare them in exemplary learning environments.…Read More
Artificially stimulating labor is associated with a slightly higher risk of autism, but researchers caution that the link may be complicated, TIME reports. In a study published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, women who needed to jump-start their labor or artificially speed up delivery were up to 23 percent more likely to have children diagnosed with autism than those who didn’t avail themselves of these methods. The scientists stress, however, that it’s not clear whether the delivery method was responsible for the higher rate of the developmental disorder, or whether babies with autism don’t send the proper signals for a timely and speedy birth……Read More
The benefits of virtual field trips are well known: They’re inexpensive—often free—and are less time-consuming than a real trip. But researching which virtual field trips are best can prove labor-intensive, and many resources are out-of-date.
To help educators save time, we’ve chosen these 10 virtual field trips based on their relevancy, depth and quality of resources, and potential for student excitement.
Know of any other great virtual field trips that didn’t make the list? Be sure to leave your suggestion in the comments section below.…Read More
It seems as though the past year I’ve heard a lot of early adopters — especially the tech media — complain about the lack of innovation coming from the tech industry, Time.com reports. Now, we can define innovation in many different ways; ways in which even simple improvements can be innovative. But I think it’s important to point out that true limit-pushing, groundbreaking innovation is cyclical, not annual. We are coming off the reinvention of two primary technologies’ categories: the smartphone and the tablet. Furthermore, we are in the midst of redefining what a personal computer is, does, and looks like. Of course, I believe innovation is still around the corner but I think there are some important market truths that need to be pointed out……Read More