Summer reading time!

Summertime, and the reading is easy

Or is it? We checked in with a few of the folks here at the Tarrant Institute to hear about what they’re reading this summer.

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Checking in with Stowe & PAML’s peer PLP collaboration

peer PLP collaborationWhen last we left the students of these two plucky Vermont middle schools, they had managed to connect students and educators via Google Hangout. They’d gotten together to make pizzas and plot the future of personalized learning plans (PLPs). And they’d paired up students as PLP peer collaborators and spent some time reviewing PLPs in pairs.

So we wanted to ask: what’s next? How’s this peer PLP collaboration thing going?

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Sharing STEAM projects with families

Proctor’s STEAM Family Night

STEAM projects with familiesThe sleepy little town of Proctor VT, is making some big waves when it comes to showcasing their students’ STEAM achievements. STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math) is a hot topic in school innovation right now, and rural towns like Proctor are primed and ready to show their communities just why STEAM matters so much to students.

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Machinima: using video games for storytelling

Be an X-Box Hero (with stars in your eyes)*

machinima in the classroomMeet machinima. The word’s a portmanteau of “machine” and “cinema”. It’s a unique form of storytelling that appears in video games, and students creating or mixing clips of video games to create new stories. And for educators, it presents a fabulous opportunity to channel students’ love of video games into producing personally relevant artifacts that demonstrate learning.

Machinima film festival, anyone?

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Dynamic Landscapes 2017: the power of authentic #vted student voice

Student keynotes, presentations, panels & partners

All with a side order of tech.

Dynamic Landscapes 2017Dynamic Landscapes 2017 is in the bag, and it was easily the best one yet.

Why? Because not only were there a ton of great tech-rich, innovative sessions for attendees to choose from, this year also featured authentic student voice.

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What we can learn from brand new educators

What advice would your 7th grade self give you about teaching?

what we can learn from brand new educatorsRemember when you were first starting out as an educator? The ink on your certification barely dried, and there you were, standing in front of your first class, 30-some pairs of eyeballs staring back at you, waiting for you to lead.

We hear from six amazing middle level educators graduating this spring from the University of Vermont. We ask them about their hopes, their fears, and… what their middle school selves would come back to tell them.

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Scheduling and student choice

Meet “iLearn”

an action research module examining scheduling and student choiceThe middle school team at Rutland Town School in Rutland, VT have been working on a more fully integrated implementation of personal learning plans (PLPs) at their school.

They’re also passionate believers in student choice and learner-centered classrooms. Given some flexibility to change the school schedule, they came up with iLearn, a model of student self-direction and choice in tackling PLPs.

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How do adverse childhood events affect student performance?

Cognitive outcomes vs intersectional traumas

do adverse childhood events affect school performanceWe talk with legendary awesome stats guy Mark Olofson — now Dr. Legendary Awesome Stats Guy Mark Olofson — about his research into adverse childhood events and school performance.

It’s some pretty important stuff, about how the intersecting traumas that affect students have some long-reaching consequences.

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4 ways of finding copyright-friendly media

The art of the responsible remix

finding copyright-friendly mediaWith the incredible popularity and ease of digital mediamaking comes great responsibility. As students unlock the power of digital storytelling and media creation, they seek to incorporate music, images and video into their productions.

But it’s not as simple as just hitting up the Google.

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Looking at ways students can create VR content

Help students become creators of this engaging new technology

ways students can create VR contentWith the astronomical rise in popularity of virtual reality in education, it’s important to make available tools for students to create virtual reality content as well as consuming it. So while you get ready to send your students off on Expeditions to amazing new worlds and experiences, have ways for them to make their own waiting when they return.

Let’s look at a couple ways students can create VR content.

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