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My Voice for Change: Muted, But Not Silenced

Posted by on Jul 6, 2012 in Making The Shift, Teacher Leadership 2.0, The Compelling Need for Change, Voices | 15 comments

After years of having a consistent online presence, I’m continuing to come to terms with my lack of blogging and other writing/sharing in the school year just past. But I think I can say that my muted voice is in part the result of a ever-increasing focus on the all-important high stakes tests, and the strict curriculum controls and direct-instruction mandates that have grown up around the national “accountability” movement.

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iPads in Primary: Does 1-to-1 Make a Difference?

Posted by on Jul 2, 2012 in Creating Global Classrooms, Making The Shift, Voices, Web Tools That Deepen Learning | 16 comments

Management of our iPads is more of a hassle than I had anticipated. But it is clear to me that these devices ARE making a difference. When I see the students’ engagement, their learning, their sharing and their pursuit of their passions, I can’t help but be convinced that these devices have the potential to transform my classroom.

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Connected PD on a (Zero) Budget

Posted by on Jun 26, 2012 in Local Professional Collaboration, Personal Learning Networks, The Teaching Life, Uncategorized, Voices | 5 comments

Teachers are hungry for professional learning but their eyes are often bigger than their pocketbooks when it comes to professional conferences in distant cities and pricey online courses. Connected educators can feed themselves, says Becky Bair, who’s not busting the bank this summer but staying home with Twitter and Google Reader.

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Blogging is the New Persuasive Essay

Posted by on Jun 22, 2012 in Making The Shift, The How of 21st Century Teaching, Voices, Web Tools That Deepen Learning | 45 comments

I think blogging is the new persuasive essay. If we’re trying to prepare our students to think critically and argue well, they need to be able to blog. It allows for interaction. It allows for ideas to be tested. And the best posts anywhere in cyberspace tend to have a point that can be argued.

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My Students Reflect on Norway’s Connected-Testing Pilot

Posted by on Jun 20, 2012 in Making The Shift, The How of 21st Century Teaching, Voices, Web Tools That Deepen Learning | 7 comments

After accessing the Internet for the first time during a high-stakes exam, one Norway student wrote: “I felt more secure on my facts and it made it so much easier for me to write my paper. I hope that in the future it will be normal to use the internet during the exam because you can support your arguments with facts you find from reliable sources. The future is technology, and we should be able to use what we can to prove what we are able to do!”

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Dear Hollywood: School Doesn’t Look Like This

Posted by on Jun 15, 2012 in Making The Shift, The Teaching Life, Voices | 9 comments

Everything we hope and expect our classrooms to be — and our students to be doing — is nowhere to be found on episodic television or in the cinema. Look hard for any type of technology being used in the classrooms portrayed on television today. It’s pretty much not there. Teachers are still portrayed as sages on the stage, students still stuck in neat rows. It’s time to demand a change!

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