Google Apps within my classroom

I would use Google Calendar to share library schedules with the rest of the school.  Depending on the size of the school, “free use” of the library might vary day to day.  Having a calendar will allow teachers to sign up for “free use” and bring their class in for additional research.  Another usage of the calendar would be for checking out technology.  Our school has a laptop cart, an i-Pad cart, and digital cameras.  We don’t have enough for every student in the school, but we have a classroom set of each.  Using the calendar option, teachers can sign up for the materials they need to check out for their lesson!

I also really liked the idea of using Google Docs to have the students create a “tag team” like story.  In this example, the students take turns writing bits and pieces on a shared topic.  This could be a creative writing group assignment or researched notes for a group project.  In either case, the students can work independently, can access the document from home, and the teacher has the ability to “see” the progress the group is making.

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My Delicious Site

As one of our assignments for EDTC 6070, we had to explore social bookmarking! What a neat concept for those of us who have a computer at home, at school, and a laptop we carry around in our bags! This is really a time saver for those awesome websites that we use on a regular basis within our own classrooms.  If you have a minute, take a look at the website betterlesson.com.  It really has some excellent ways to use the Common Core Standards in English/Reading and Math.

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Ideas for using Edmodo

Found a really great Google Doc that has a plethora of ways to use Edmodo in the classroom.

With this being a “safe” version of Facebook, I know my students really enjoy the use of Edmodo as part of the technology we use in our classroom.  There is bound to be an idea of two on this comprehensive list you will be able to use in your classroom too!

~ Life-Long Learners ~

As an educator, my goal is not to just teach children – it’s to teach learners how to learn, regardless of age.  In today’s technology-driven learning environments, technology plays a vital role in the learning process.  Children are more flexible than adults with this technology because it is something they were almost “born” knowing how to use, whereas adults are a little inflexible when it comes to technology because it can be foreign to them.   Remember your first experience with computers…. “Are you sure you want to terminate the program?” Was anybody else intimidated by the word “terminate!?!”

What are some ways educators can help each other make time for technology ?

* Set aside time once a week to collaborate with each other as a school on the ways technology is being used in other classrooms

* Advocate for training on the newest technology items within the school (I remember the first time I held in I-pad… it was given to me to use within a lesson….. I’d never held one before, because I make a NC teacher salary and can’t afford an item like that LOL!)

* Keep a positive attitude when working with technology – sometimes the server is down & that’s okay!

* As a grade level team, seek out ways to use technology within lessons you have taught for years and could do with your eyes closed.

* Don’t be afraid to ask for help from technology facilitators, curriculum coaches, and younger teachers (who might possess more tech knowledge)

Resource

Cannistraci, L. (2011). The Value of Instructional Technology in a K-12 District. Distance Learning8(1), 9-16.