This quarter, our cohort was asked to individually create professional project proposals that would be submitted to the conference of our choice. When I first saw this, I felt intimidated. Not only had I never presented at a conference, but at first I felt unsure about what I could possibly be knowledgeable enough about to share with others. However, if I have come to any conclusion in this program, it is the roll with the unsure. Upon some more reflection, I gave myself a little more credit.There’s already so much I have learned in the DEL program at SPU. Among all of them, I feel the most passionate about Digital Citizenship.
I have spent the past year becoming familiar with Common Sense Media’s digital citizenship curriculum, completing their certification and integrating digital citizenship lessons into a kindergarten classroom. It has been an amazing learning experience for me as a teacher, but even more amazing to see what my students can do even at such a young age. It is crucial to mold well rounded digital citizens in our classrooms, and even more so to begin building the foundation at an early age. I am a strong advocate for this, and will take any opportunity to educate others.
As I started to create a project proposal about Common Sense Media and it’s digital citizenship lessons, I realized that another person in my cohort, Liz Ebersole, was developing something really similar. She had designed a workshop for her school that helped teachers integrate common sense curriculum into existing academic curriculum. I thought this was a really great component that I hadn’t thought to touch on. I connected with her, and we realized that we would work really well together. We plan to submit out workshop proposal to the NCCE conference in March.
Check out the link below to our project proposal: Integrating Digital Citizenship: It’s Common Sense!
After we had constructed and revised all three phases of our project, it was time to reflect. During the quarter one of our readings was an EdSurge article about the 5 things teachers are looking to get out of a PD. We connected our reflection to these 5 components. Please enjoy the video below!
So far this has been a really great learning experience. I was fortunate enough to collaborate with an amazing peer to create something that we both strongly believe in. If our workshop gets accepted, we are both excited to get the chance to present in the future. We look forward to adding a follow up reflection in addition to what we have created!
e. Troubleshoot basic software, hardware, and connectivity problems common in digital learning environments
g. Use digital
Skype is a great way to remove walls in the classroom and reach collaborative destinations never imagined previously. Field trips across the country are now as close as a video connection. Classrooms connect with other classrooms across the world. Students connect with experts, guest speakers and others who add authenticity and excitement to learning. How do you make this as seamless as possible? What factors are the most important to keep in mind? Where do you start? These are questions I find myself asking when I begin to plan out a collaborative project that involves connecting with digital tools.
In the article “Dos and Don’t for Skype in the Classroom,” I found several important key pieces that are very relevant to creating a high quality Skype chat with your classroom and whoever you choose to connect with. It addresses many components that I had never thought about before I started my class collaboration in the past, and many issues that I did encounter. Although this article is tailored to Skype, I do believe the tips can apply to many emerging technologies when collaborating digitally in the classroom.
Below is an infographic made with www.easel.ly, that displays the dos and don’ts of Skype in the classroom. The article above describes these components in more depth, but these are the main ideas to keep in mind. Typically I would create an infographic on Piktochart, but I decided to try a new tool. Easel.ly was very simple to use and navigate, but I found its options for graphics and text to not be quite as vast as Piktochart, but hey I tried something new right? Even with these few flawed features, I would continue to explore it in the future.
There are so many technology resources available for educators to use in the classroom that it can be overwhelming to select the appropriate one that is the right fit for you, your purpose and your class.
According to the Ed Surge article “Resources to Help You Choose the Digital Tools Your Classroom Needs,“ nationwide, 51 percent of teachers select up to half of the education technology they use. With such a large number of teachers selecting most of their own digital tools, the need for a good resource to aid them becomes really important. The article goes on to say that “More than half of the teachers we surveyed said they rely primarily on recommendations from other teachers to choose technology.” Experience and advice from colleagues can be valuable and helpful, but how do we make sure that we are exposed to the best options and resources out there? The articles says, that fewer than 2 in 10 teachers currently use educator-specific online resources to learn about digital products. There are many online communities that are focused on rating digital tools and creating valuable reviews that can assist educators while selecting tools for their classroom.
I wanted to take a look into these online resources and evaluate which one I thought would be the most effective for teachers to use. The four online resources listed in the article were Ed Surge Product Index, Common Sense Graphite, Learn Trials and Learning Assembly. I began to search through them and their reviews and descriptions, and get the general feel of navigated the websites.
I began to think of the components that were important to me when navigating these resources. I settled on four main components that I look for: Ease of Use, Up to Date information, Quality of the Descriptions and Reviews and Ease of Access. I then used the online tool iRubric to create my own rubric I could evaluate these resources with
I knew from exploring the resources that two of them were a better fit for me. I decided to evaluate the Ed Surge Product Index and Common Sense Media’s Graphite.
Ease of Use: 3. I thought that this resource was easy to use and categorized in a way that was concise and pleasing to the eye. It was easy to go in and look up a digital tool based on what need you have in your classroom.
Up to Date: 2. Most of the resources seemed up to date, but some of the reviews were over a year ago, with little action since.
Descriptions and Reviews: 2. There were good reviews on some products, but others didn’t have a description or review. I think it is valuable that the reviews are submitted by educators, but it would be helpful if there was an initial review. If there was no review submitted, then some of the tools had no information. However, Ed Surge does have Ed Tech Concierge which would be a very valuable tool that can be catered specifically to your school’s need. I did feel like this was a feature that would mostly be used by tech leaders or administration.
Ease of Access: 3. The Product Index was easy to access, and you can look up any information without logging in or creating a member account. This was important for me because it makes access and use so much more efficient.
Ease of Use: 3. Graphite was extremely easy to access. The organization was very pleasing to the eye. Each product is displayed on a thumbnail with a graphic of the app and summary presented. There are also many different ways the tools can be categorized and looked up.
Up to Date: 3. All of the tools, descriptions and reviews seemed to be very up to date. It also appeared that Graphite titles the recent reviews and descriptions by season and year.
Descriptions and Reviews: 3. The description and reviews are very high quality. There is a separate review from Common Sense and from Educators, so I think you get two different perspectives.There are also tons of other resources like video links and related resources, even recommended ways to use the tool.
Ease of Access: 3. Graphite is very easy to access and you don’t have to be logged in to view information on tools and products. Although, you get the best access to Common Sense Media in general when you are logged in with your account.
Overall, Graphite is the resource I would choose and recommend to others to use when selecting digital tools for a classroom. It is concise, easily organized, pleasing to the eye with valuable reviews and extra features.
b. Maintain and manage a variety of digital tools and resources for teacher and student use in
a. Model effective classroom management and collaborative learning strategies to maximize teacher and student use of digital tools