Explore ways to integrate technology and increase engagement by using: Google Docs/Forms to collaborate and gather information; Weebly for websites; Kidblog/Wordpress for blogs; Photopeach for photomovies; Twitter for updates; Padlet to gather ideas; Wordle for avatars or presentations; and Screenr for screen captures.
Today’s 20 Blog Challenge topic asks me to name a website that I can’t live without. I really thought about this for awhile because so many of them came to mind. I started to select my class assignment blog or my PLN blog and then I realized that I visit them often but not daily. Twitter I visit daily, hourly … or in reality every 10 minutes on average. Everything that I have done ‘new’ in my class is a result of a tweet. Twitter connects me with other educators from around the world. THE WORLD. How awesome is that?
Why??? Hmmm, I share and look for resources regularly. Everyday I look for ways to
perfect improve my craft. My students are always amazed when I tell them that I am going to a conference, meeting, class or webinar because I want to not because I have to. I try to explain that I do consider myself to be a lifelong learner who is constantly trying to get new ideas, activities or resources. I tell them that I would not be a good teacher or mother if I did not try to find ways to et better at everything I do. There are some things that I will use and some things that I will not. I read articles and blogs that I think are interesting. they may or may not help me out in life or my class but I think that it is important for me to exercise my brain and my creative nature.
I named my blog To blog is to share and to learn for a reason.
Here is one of the first Tweets that I sent out for the new year:
— Valerie R. Burton (@MsBisOnline) January 1, 2014
Each of these tweeple (and many more) has shaped my professional and personal world. From them I have learned:
- To value Twitter and the connection it brings me to other educators
- To dare my students to be creative and excel and perform Romeo and Juliet for the world to see
- To open up my heart and share my life, whether it is the death of a dog or the death of a parent
- To present online or face-to-face as much as possible because it is something that I love to do
- To blog and accept blogging challenges
- To connect with others and organize an EdCamp in my city if I feel strongly
My Twittersphere is large and it is awesome. Thanks to you all.
Thanks @kellyhines for the motivation to share.
When working with text, we need to find Literacy strategies that require our students to do more than read and recite facts. We need to get them to connect with the text and go beyond recalling details.
These slides are a part of a presentation that I created for the 2013 Louisiana Council of Teachers of English Conference.
Anyone who knows me that Being Organized is something that I am NOT.
I TRY, but I FAIL, often.
Because I know myself and my weaknesses, I am going to enlist the help of my students. The best way to ensure that students take an active role in maintaining the classroom is to assign classroom jobs on a rotating basis. This is a win-win situation. I get assistance and they get the respect that comes with responsibility.
Two things that I am determined to use this semester are: classroom managers and inbox envelopes.
Classroom managers can help me stay organized and it gives the kids the recognition of feeling needed and being important.
- Message Manager serves as the classroom runner.
- Attendance Manager takes the daily attendance.
- Library Manager supervises the distribution of textbooks.
- Door Manager greets all visitors at the door.
- Materials Manager supervises the distribution and collection of needed resources.
- Pocket Manager collects and distributes inbox envelopes to the learning communities.
- Assignment Blog Manager is responsible for keeping a record of what exactly the class has done every day. If someone was absent they check the blog and easily understand what they need to do to catch up without asking.
Inbox envelopes hold student work to be collected and distributed.
My students are placed into learning communities and each community has its own envelope. The envelopes are placed into a file folder caddy. Each period has its own set of envelopes. This way I do not have to collect and organize 100 assignments that I might collect during the day.
My Day Two – 20 Day Blogging Challenge
I have committed to blogging more thanks to Kelly Hines. She has created a list of blogging topics that I hope to follow. Below is the challenge list.
— Valerie R. Burton (@MsBisOnline) January 2, 2014
@MsBisOnline I hope you will share your journey. Thank you for joining me!
— Kelly Hines (@kellyhines) January 2, 2014
******* Here is my DAY ONE *******
Favorite book to teach: Ernest J. Gaines’s A Lesson Before Dying
I love the book because it is set in Louisiana and the main focus of the book is not whether or not they save an inmate from death row BUT the journey that he takes while on it. Many of them really believe that there is going to be a call from the Governor’s office to stop his execution.
When I teach this book I want to be sure that they ……
- understand the struggles of main characters – two men with different perspectives who are both from the Louisiana in the 1940s and their search for identify and dignity
- identify a thematic focus of the book
- suggest an appropriate symbol
One activity that I have them do is a 4 x 4 which is my take on a literary 3 x 3 (Create three, three-word sentences that state the essence of the work)
Here are some of their responses:
A Lesson Before Dying.
Lessons to be Men.
Lessons to love family
Lessons to know sacrifice.
A Lesson Before Dying
One white, three colored
One colored man breathing
Who’s accused anyway, Jefferson
White man is killed
Grant’s life is over
Wrong place, wrong time
Compared to a hog
I showed my students two pictures and asked them to create poetry based on their impression of the who, what, when, where, why and how of the image.
Here are slides from my LACUE 2013 Presentation
Tech + CCSS = Engagement
Integrating technology into your classes can help to cover Common Core State Standards.
Many tech tools can aid students in reading and connecting with written and visual text.
Key Ideas and Details
R.1 Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the visual or written text.
R.2 Determine central ideas or themes of a visual or written text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
R.3 Analyze how and why individuals, events, or ideas develop and interact over the course of a visual or written text.
Craft and Structure
R.4 Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a visual or written text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word or image choices shape meaning or tone.
R.5 Analyze the structure of visual or written texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.
R.6 Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a visual or written text.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas
R.7 Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
R.8 Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a visual or written text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.
R.9 Analyze how two or more visual or written texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.
Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity
R.10 Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently.
Text Types and Purposes
W.1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.
W.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
W.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details and well-structured event sequences.
Production and Distribution of Writing
W.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
W.5 Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
W.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge
W.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
W.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
W.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
Range of Writing
W.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences
Comprehension and Collaboration
SL.1 Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
SL.2 Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
SL.3 Evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric.
Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas
SL.4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
SL.5 Make strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data to express information and enhance understanding of presentations.
SL.6 Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and communicative tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.
Reform Symposium Free Online Conference (RSCON) is an online worldwide event that took place this weekend, October 11th – 13th. Shelly Terrell invited me to present and it was awesome. October is Connected Educator Month and The Future of Education hosted the conference online in Blackboard Collaborate webinar rooms. It was a great experience to be a part of this awesome group of educators.
In my session Saturday morning, I shared with people from Texas, Amsterdam, Australia, Africa and elsewhere in the world. How great is it that we have the opportunity to learn from colleagues from around the world?
My weekend has been one filled with tons of great, inspirational moments. I will be taking the next couple of days to process and make changes in my life and my classroom.
Here are some of the tweets from today
Exit Tickets can be used to gauge whether or not students have processed new concepts. It is a quick way to have them reflect on information learned or to express their thoughts about new information. Students need to respond to a prompt and it is an easy way to incorporate writing into many different content areas. Here are a few examples of exit tickets that can be used:
At the end of class, have students complete exit tickets to:
- have students summarize key points from the lesson
- make sure that students can solve a problem
- highlight an essential question from the day’s activities
- answer a significant question based on the lesson
- allow students to ask questions they still have about the lesson
They can be as structured or un-structured as you need them to be.