Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Give up some control...

As teachers, we like our classroom to run exactly as we planned in our lesson. Unfortunately, students don't learn in the same manner as they used to. They are MUCH more "wired" than we are.
I think we try so hard to keep up with technology, we sometimes forget to give some of the responsibility to the students.

For example:
Challenge:I want to be able to share a google doc with my 3rd hour class. I don't want to have to type in all of their addresses manually. That would take a lot of MY time.

Solution: Have a computer set up in a wordprocessing document. When students walk in (or as part of a center) have them type their school email address on the page and then press enter. Once the class is done, you now have a document with the email addresses of each student. You can copy/paste this into the share box or even use it to email all the students.

Benefits: Students have taken ownership. If they didn't type it or type it in correctly, they won't be getting the documents they need. The teacher has just saved a lot of time, especially if they teacher several classes. We are modeling the fact that we all have to work together as we journey towards success!

You can't do it all! Just do your best job at what you can do!
Don't sweat the small stuff :)

SHOW ME!

The Show Me app can be downloaded for free from the iTunes store. It can be used on an iPad/iTouch to record voice and writing on a whiteboard. You can even add images. You can save the screen cast you create right on the device or upload it for free to their site. They have a private or public option for you also.
There are several teachers having students create screen casts to show mastery of skill and to build a library of RTI resources for their students.
Nothing is better that having students take ownership of their learning!

Feed Books public domain ebooks

Feed Books allows you to download public domain Feed Books allows you to download public domain pieces from The Curious Case of Benjamin Button to The Call of the Wild. The formats are .pdf, epub, and kindle. These can be used easily on any apple device with iBooks or on a kindle. What a great resource for students to read digital text!