How to use Google Hangout for screencasting

Let this powerful tool save you time

how to use Google Hangout for screencastingThere are a plethora of screencasting tools available for Mac, PC and Chromebook, but one way to create a super-quick screencast when you want students to be able to see you in the picture, is to use Google Hangout for screencasting and take advantage of Google’s smooth workflow and easy-to-use screen-sharing option. Super useful for Google schools, and did we mention it’s free?

Step-by-step, here’s how to use Google Hangout for screencasting

Continue reading

Blended learning and teacher empowerment

Getting educators to a place of power with a powerful method

blended learning and teacher empowermentWhen I think about educational technology, it has never for me been divorced from pedagogy.  As soon as I encounter a new digital tool, although it might attract me at first based on its novelty, my mind immediately jumps to the connection of how can I use this with my students to __________.  I fill in that blank with all manner of things to include: uncover what they’ve learned, inspire deep thinking, provide a visual prompt or clue, create an engaging hook, etc.  So, sometimes I’m taken aback when colleagues suggest teachers who embrace technology “tool hop” without any intentionality or simply like to play with then next new, shiny toy.

Continue reading

4 amazing things afoot at The Cabot School

The Cabot SchoolSo many schools in Vermont are engaged in innovative, student-centered, tech-rich education work.We’re proud to partner with The Cabot School for just this reason.

Their students write the school’s website updates. They’ve been featured twice on VPR this past year. They win national awards for their recyclable, energy-efficient musical production, and their educators are Rowland Fellows building a ground-breaking new project-based learning app.

Check out what’s happening at school in Cabot, Vermont.

Continue reading

Celebrating learning at Richmond Elementary School

4th grade researchers share Capstone Projects with community

celebrating learning at Richmond Elementary SchoolThis past Wednesday, 4th grade scholars at Richmond Elementary School, in Richmond, Vermont, shared the results of their research with their families and community. They opened the doors of their school to family and friends for Celebrating Learning at Richmond Elementary School.

I had a chance to attend the event and spoke with some of the students about their research work.

Continue reading

What it’s really like to use an LMS with students

edmodo vs Schoology, digital badges and how to leave a great comment

The 21st Century Classroom podcast by the Tarrant Institute5th grade Peoples Academy Middle Level teacher Hannah Lindsey returns this week with a look at what it’s really like to use an LMS with students. She sat down with Mark Olofson to talk about her experiences with edmodo and Schoology in the classroom.

Continue reading

What does Minecraft look like in a school?

Crafting Pickaxes, swords and social skills

how teachers use MinecraftSince its release in 2009, Minecraft has made its way into 60 million homes worldwide and has become the best-selling PC game of all time. The game can now be played on multiple platforms, including XBox, Playstation, and most smart phones and tablets. There are Youtube videos with literally millions of views of people playing Minecraft while providing their own commentary. Shoppers can now purchase Lego sets, T-shirts, keychains, books, foam pickaxes, costumes, and so much more. For educators, it’s becoming nearly impossible to make it through a day without hearing children talk about Minecraft.

So how can teachers use Minecraft in the classroom?

Continue reading

The digital native problem

Labels get in the way of fully understanding people

Innovation ANESUIn a recent Twitter chat #vted we were discussing digital citizenship and the confounded label “digital native” came up.  Labels typically get in the way of fully understanding people, and these terms “digital native” and “digital immigrant” smack of ageism and false assumptions.  Coined by Marc Prensky over 14 years ago, it was meant to prompt educators to think differently about teaching and learning.  The digital tools now available to learners allow us to go far beyond the walls of the classroom; one of my history teachers is blogging with students in Bhutan this week, for example, mutually solving problems through the lenses of their own culture.  When I was in ninth grade, we had a dusty old textbook that managed to make even Ancient Rome boring.  The world has indeed changed and teaching and learning need to change with the times.

Continue reading

3 ways to use Chatterpix with maps

Thinglink, augmented reality and gaming

ways to use Chatterpix with mapsAlert reader Lucia Hoegeveen asked a question about our suggestion that you create a map of a country and give each state it’s own voice. Now, as she pointed out, each Chatterpix you create can have only one mouth. So in order to make our Chatter-map, we’re going to need to app-smash Chatterpix in one of a couple different ways.

Or maybe we’ll just put them all together in a blender and hope for the best. I’ll let you know after I finish this delicious coffee.

Continue reading

Professional development through Google Hangouts

Two years ago, our middle level team undertook a pilot project to begin work on personal learning plans (PLPs). Under the guidance of James Nagle, professor of education at St. Michael’s College, Team Summit teachers and students initiated the process of creating personal learning plans as mandated by Act 77 and the state of Vermont. The work progressed through several stages of development. Initially, students created their personal learning plan using a template created through Google Sites. Soon after, students began using the PLP as a record of growth and reflection, goals, personal strengths and challenges, and as a multimodal platform to demonstrate their learning.

Continue reading