Tag Archives: Week 5

Week 5: What is a Technology Rich Classroom?

image by Wokandapix via Pixabay

ESSENTIAL QUESTION: How can we maximize the potential of technology devices in a classroom environment?

Another big question for educators these days! And as you see from this week’s readings having access to technology and devices involves a lot of considerations including management, usage and balance. And with lots of news, research and variety of perspectives about kids and technology, educators must be prepared to justify how they use technology to support and enhance teaching and learning. There are many resources to guide teachers about how to manage devices….here are a few…

Classroom Management Tips for the Technology Rich Classroom (Edutopia)

5 Classroom Management Tips for Technology Integration (Mind/Shift)

And it’s also important to consider not only the benefits when using technology, but also the challenges…

The Pros and Cons of Technology (Edudemic)
How Much Screen Time? That’s the Wrong Question (Edutopia)

There’s even debate on if technology is even making an impact in student learning….

5 Problems with Technology in the Classroom (Teach Thought)
School technology struggles to make an impact (BBC)

And how do we combine traditional (effective) teaching strategies with technology? Larry Cuban asks in Technology “Disrupting” Teaching,  “Have the new technologies used by schools and in classrooms altered the practice of teaching and learning? While Kerry Gallagher (in EdSurge) explains “Why Effective Digital Learning Shouldn’t Disrupt Traditional Teaching Techniques”

And do the devices we provide in schools make a difference? Kim Cofino leads an online discussion asking “Why are we building 1:1 programs with laptops when kids are using mobile devices?” (Laptop Learning Curve) (blog post and video OR listen to it as a podcast here)

Lots of things to consider as educators….but also consider this perspective from this student

Course 4 Progress Check
We are wrapping up Course 4 in the next few weeks and by April 22 you should have

  • 5 blog post completed and listed on your grading spreadsheet
  • 5 comments completed and listed on your grading spreadsheet
    • You are welcome to comment outside the cohort, but please continue to read and comment within it as well.

Week 5: Infographics and Data Visualizations

image by JuralMin via Pixabay

As we continue to explore visual literacy for Course 3, this week we look at the use of infographics and data visualizations. This can be one of the more challenging aspects of visual literacy to address. If we are selecting infographics or data visualizations to share with students, how to we help them learn to decipher what they are being shown? (Critical Thinking Skills!) And if we ask them to construct an infographic or data visualization, which tools should they use and how should they present the information effectively? (for some fun, just Google “Bad Infographics” for some examples you could analyze with your students!)

A Couple Recommendations…

In this week’s readings, we share some additional resources including Nicki Hambleton’s site about Sketchnotes (aka Visual Notetaking). Nicki works with students and adults in developing ways to synthesis and organize ideas and information visually. You can find her on Twitter @itsallaboutart and check out her Learning 2.0 Talk “The Power of Visuals” here.

Another educator (and friend of Nicki’s) that also shares the power of visual notetaking is Sonya TerBorg. Just today she shared a blog post “Sketchnotes 101” with some basic strategies for visual notetaking. Sonya shares her own sketchnotes via her Twitter account @tersonya. Beyond sketchnoting, Sonya’s blog covers a wide range of topics, especially around student agency, innovation and inquiry

Progress Check for Week 5

  • 4 blog posts completed and listed on your grading spreadsheet
    • Remember as a part of your GET certification it is important to start trying to incorporate ways you are planning trainings for your colleagues and using GSuite tools in your daily work
  • 4 comment completed and listed on your grading spreadsheet
    • You are encouraged to comment more, but only log one per week. Try to keep them timely, not necessarily get them all done the first week.
  • Hopefully well into working on your final project for this course.

Note: I’ve had a few participants ask about how to know if they are on track for the GET certification. Your blog posts should evidence of how you are meeting those tasks listed in the GET tabs and/or in the assignments. Of course you can also use your blog to document any training you do. Let us know if you have additional questions about GET.


Week 5: Empowering Connections

image by geralt via Pixabay

As we move into Week 5, a reminder of what you should have done so far…

  • 4 blog posts completed and listed on your grading spreadsheet
    • Remember as a part of your GET certification it is important to start trying to incorporate ways you are planning trainings for your colleagues and/or using GSuite tools in your daily work
  • 4 comments completed and listed on your grading spreadsheet
    • You are encouraged to comment more, but only log one per week
  • Please continue to check for and approved all comments on your own blog and of course respond to them
  • Connected with another member of the cohort and making progress on your Course 2 Final Project

Social Media and the Power of Change

I think this topic is a great way to wrap up the topics we’ve been covering in Course 2. We’ve looked at copyright & plagiarism, digital footprints, online privacy, and digital citizenship. All which can be daunting especially when trying to  figure out how to address them both personally and as an educator. And it’s to find all the negative aspects of technology and the internet in this digital age and how it’s ruining all our lives – but what about all the ways it has improved and enhanced our lives and others. This week’s understanding is a provocative statement to turn all the concerns we have to remind us of how tools and resources can be used for good.

When I talk about my PLN via Twitter I sometimes get those comments about how Twitter is full of trashy celebrities and nasty trolls. I admit that you can find all sorts on Twitter but I choose not to engage in those negative aspects and build my Twitter to suit my needs and interests. And for me, my Twitter has provided an inexhaustible source of resources, ideas and support. So this week’s understanding “The communication tools that exist today are powerful mediums to help spread positive change and global awareness.” And we can easily find, and have even experienced, how social media and modern technology can have a positive impact.

The article “Social Media as a Formidable Force for Change”, explores the power of the hashtag as one medium and aptly introduces the topic with a powerful statement…

The power of social media is hard to dismiss. What once seemed like a trivial way to keep in touch with friends, sharing photos and jokes, has become a force for societal change, shining light on subjects previously unknown, deepening conversations and empowering citizens of the world to unite and effect change in a number of ways.

Here’s an article from Harvard Business Review “Creating Social Change with Social Media” that uses #GivingTuesday (which is tomorrow!) as an example to provide suggestions how social purpose organizations can use social media to promote their cause. Or this article “YouTube Creators Using The Internet For Positive Change” providing examples of how this video sharing platform has provided a space for many people “to raise funds and awareness for causes ranging from anxiety to world hunger. The success of these digital do-gooders relies on the empowerment, education, and engagement of their audiences, rather than just views.”

And these are just a handful of examples of the positive power of technology and social media. What other examples have you found or experienced yourself?

Week 5: Collaboration in the Digital Age

Technology has really made the ability to collaborate across time and space a reality and even the norm in many learning and work spaces today. In addition to COETAIL, I am also involved with Eduro Learning and just in the last month I’ve been communicating in real time with others via Google Hangouts and Slack across multiple time zones and reviewing and contributing to materials via Google Docs. The amount of work we are able to accomplish in one day would have taken weeks, if not months, and been very expensive (travel and communication costs) just 20 years ago. So as educators, how can we take advantage of the ability to not just connect, but also collaborate to enhance our students learning? In other words, according to our essential question this week, how can we embrace globally collaborative projects in our curricular areas to address this facet of 21st Century Learning?

If you are just building your PLN, taking on a global collaborative project can seem daunting. However, you can start locally to build your and your students’ experience with collaborating with others. What skills and strategies do students need to collaborate in face to face situations in their classroom? In their school? Starting in an environment and with teachers you are familiar with can help build experience and confidence to branch out further. @kehrimagalad shares her experience in connecting her music class with another in her area via a member of her PLN in her blog post “Geeking Out: A Beginner’s Guide”.

When you are ready to try something more global, there are many projects and organizations that support global collaboration for learning. @gchagaris shares her students’ experience via PenPal Schools where her students connected with others to collaboratively learn about a science topic. Check out her story in her post “Geeking Out”

One recent COETAIL graduate, Joel Bevans, did his Course 5 final project on collaborative storytelling which he has now developed into the Travelling Tales project that brings 5 classrooms from around the world to write a story together.

I look forward to hearing how you are inspired to “embrace globally collaborative projects”!