J is for just-in-time learning

just-in-time-learningJust-in-time learning in its best form is “Just for me” learning. When you learn something because you yearn to understand it, precisely when you need to apply it, you will learn it deeply and joyfully. Your brain will soak it up because your heart is in it.

Now, how does that translate to providing just-in-time-teaching?

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Multiple platforms, multiple voices: scenes from a 1:1 rollout

Collaborative blogging puts students’ voices out front

getting student perspectives on school changeHazen Union School 8th grade student Elijah Lew-Smith shared the first student post of the school year on the school’s shared Middle Level Blog.

Check out his post to see this year’s new initiatives: 1:1 with iPads, a new House structure, and the focus on Project Based Learning, from a student perspective.  

But that’s not all.

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I is for Identity

3 tech-rich strategies for exploring identity with students

identity in PLPs

“Who am I?” is the question at the heart of the adolescent mind. Almost all challenges, tests, and dilemmas relate to the central theme of identity.

Young adolescents seek to find answers to questions like, “Where do I fit in?”, “What makes me different or special?” and “What do I believe?”

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H is for Hangout

What can educators do with Google Hangout?

What can educators do with Google HangoutMuch like being friends on social media, physical proximity has little to do connecting people with other people. Google Hangouts has successfully made communication between individuals or groups and accessing information a bit easier and some may save they even have shrunk the world.

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G is for Group Device Management

Physical management of tech

aka OMG Where Did All These Cords Come From

management of tech in a 1:1The act of simply registering, storing, charging, keeping track of and distributing apps to devices in a 1:1 environment is a full set of challenges on its own. And so, while we’ll later this week get to the other two important aspects of Group Device Management — Behavior Expectations and Communicating With Families — let’s take a few minutes to tackle the physical realities of suddenly having mumble-hundred pieces of identical technology arrive at your door.

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F is for Family Communication

The ABCs of edtech with the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education

4 edtech tools for family communication

How can technology help make communicating with your students’ families easier? These 4 edtech tools for family communication offer different ways to open the door to your classroom and welcome families inside.

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E is for e-books …or are they “C-books”?

The ABCs of edtech with the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education

Why create and use e-books in the classroom?

Resources like e-books are a common “first step” when we think about integrating technology into the classroom. However, simply substituting an e-book for a traditional book ignores the opportunity to shift towards more student-centered practices. In a recent article, Chronis Kynigos reported on a joint effort between teachers and programmers to develop a “C-book;” an e-book that implements elements of constructionism. 
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D is for digital workflow

The ABCs of edtech with the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education

Digital workflow: What is it good for?

digital workflowIn its simplest form, digital workflow exchanges the paper and pencil transfer of information for a centralized digital system where information is pushed out,  synthesized, analyzed, or created and returned to the teacher.

With the increasing popularity of 1:1 programs, or readily available access to technology, the form in which learning transfers between people, adults and students, looks slightly different than when I was in school. Additionally, the availability of free programs, such as Google Classroom, help to promote the cycle of information in an effective way.

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C is for citizenship (digital of course!)

The ABCs of edtech with the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education

Approaching student digital citizenship from many levels

Our students live in technology-rich worlds, regardless of how much technology they are using in school on a day-to-day basis. Technology has all kinds of awesome educational benefits, but Uncle Ben’s advice to Spiderman is fitting here: “With great power comes great responsibility.” As educators we’re obliged to help students use technology appropriately and safely.

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B is for Booktracks

The ABCs of edtech with the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education

Augmented reality enhances reading — with sound

After being introduced to Booktrack Classroom at an ISTE 2015 session, it struck me as the perfect tool to help students play with the ways tone is established. One of my favorite passages that teaches the power of syntax to convey meaning is the first paragraph of Ray Bradbury’s short story The Long Rain:

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