When the Going Gets Tough!

I recorded this podcast about a week after our Rigorous PBL training. Since then I have had more time to explore using the idea of Surface, Deep, and Transfer in actual planning. One of the things that I have noticed is that just like trying to get to the R in SAMR is difficult, trying to get to the Transfer level is also difficult. This makes me wonder if this is why teachers struggle so much to get to these levels? Is it because it is one more difficult element in a long list of difficult elements that make up education?

Is it similar to why some parents, even though they know better, do things to make their lives easier, like letting their phone be a babysitter? Michael mentions John Hattie’s Meta-Analysis and that basically having any teacher in a classroom is on some level effective. I wonder if this isn’t why education has become so stagnate. We just keep doing what we have always done because it isn’t ineffective. I think this is part of the reason why I have stayed overseas. Other than the lifestyle and travel which are personal reasons. The professional reasons are that I am not interested in spending my time in a school that is just doing the minimal effective techniques to teach students.

I do know that I don’t have to go internationally to be able to be a part of the change that I think education needs, but I do know that international schools do play a role in leading some changes. I also know that there are many international schools out there that are doing just the minimal to get students education like any other school system.

I like to think of myself as someone who is motivated to be a part of the change in education. I am actively participating in my school’s research and development teams. I am actively staying on top of trending changes in my field. Do I do this because I am a single subject teacher and I have more time? Do I do this because as part of any technology job you have to stay on top of the tech and it changes so often? Do I do this because I am self-motivated and this is just my personality? I really think that it is a combination of all of the above and I hope that the drive never changes. I do know that the drive has become more developed with the development of my digital PLN. Until I started developing my PLN through social media, I was only able to stay on top of things through face to face PD and information from other teachers. Now I am getting information nearly as soon as it happens and am part of discussions sometimes from the very beginning.

I also feel that a huge part of doing this effectively is being collaborative. Working with others either in your field, school, grade level, whoever. Find someone who can help you and work with them to bat ideas around. When I was trying to come up with how to move projects that were apart of my Course 5 project along the SAMR model it too me and my teaching partner both batting around ideas before we could figure out how to move things along. One of us was not enough, doing things in isolation for me is not enough, I need to bounce ideas around with another person so that I can think through them more thoroughly and work out all of the elements needed. That is one thing I like about the international schools that I have worked in. I have been very lucky to have always had colleagues who are willing to collaborate with me!

I think that this is a great time to be in education because of the rate of information sharing and the speed at which change can happen, there is no excuse for not being a part of change if you want to be. You only have to take the leap and challenge yourself to do the hard things. Like, try to figure out how to take lessons involving technology to Redefinition and how to move your students into a place were Transferring their knowledge is normal and just part of what they do.

Is it hard? Yes! Should we do it anyway? Absolutely!

 

What it Takes to Effectively Get Seesaw Up and Running in a G3 class

This week we were asked to write a post to reflect on technology use that we have done in the classroom. I have decided to share with you how I have helped a teacher introduce the behaviors and expectations around getting Seesaw ePortfolios up and running in his classroom. This is a teacher, Mr. King, who last year did use Seesaw, but by his own admission not very well and only did the minimum. This year his goal was to do it better and earlier (mainly because it was ready to go earlier).

He asked me to come in and do the first “post a picture” lesson with his students. This lesson’s focus was on setting up practices around what Seesaw is, how it will be used throughout the year, how we manage having five shared classroom iPads and 1:1 Chromebooks, and what Seesaw’s purpose is.

To fully understand the situation I will give you a bit of history on this class. There are four students from a class that used iPads, Chromebooks, and Seesaw heavily the year before. The rest of the students had some Chromebook exposure during grade two. The classroom itself has a set of 5 iPads and one Chromebook per student. Mr. King was 1:1 with Chromebooks the previous year.

The first lesson started with me explaining to the students that what we were hoping to achieve was understanding how to share iPads to take pictures and then move to Chromebooks to add comments. Mr. King wanted them to post a picture of their values poster. This was an A3 sized poster for most students. So my focus for the first part of the lesson was getting them to first take good pictures of their posters.

My second focus was getting them logged into Seesaw on the iPads. Because we only had five iPads in the room we decided to do this in phases. So after I explained all of the instructions to the students, I kept five on the carpet and the rest went to their Chromebooks to work on math practice. With the five that I kept, I sent them to take their picture then return to sit with me. We worked together to get everyone logged into Seesaw since they are using their email accounts, which they haven’t memorized yet. Once we all got logged in we all created a photo post in Seesaw. I then had them practice logging out (an essential for shared iPads) and I sent them to their seats to finish their posts on their Chromebooks.

I continued to select five students until we managed to get the whole class finished. This first lesson took nearly an hour to complete but the system of working with a few at a time was very helpful for both the students and me. It also gave Mr. King time to watch what I was managing repeatedly, so he was learning as well. The speed and the groupings worked really well for the students and allowed me to learn how fast or slow or independent different students were.

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.16e621f0-daa4-4135-a2d9-8043dacd6d23&share_token=p3fBbRQtTuCDGm7I9PKy1Q&mode=share

This is an example of one post. Here are the student’s own comments on this post:

“I have learned what values mean and what influence means and what values mean by doing this activity. By doing this activity ,values means what is important stuff to you”

By the next lesson, Mr. King had already had them complete another photo post as reinforcement. So they were ready for a different type of post. For this post, we video recorded each student reading their biography. I knew going into this lesson that it was going to be tricky to finish in one 1-hour session and I made sure to tell the students this so that they knew that we may not complete the task. Letting them know this up front did a lot to manage their expectations I think. Also letting them know that Mr. King and I were still testing out the best way to do things helped them relax about making mistakes. They knew that we were all still trying to work it all out and therefore things might change!

So we paired students up and had them record their videos on the iPads. This is where it got tricky because I didn’t think it was a good plan to have every student log into Drive on their iPad, save their videos, then log out then pass the iPad to their partner and repeat. So we decided to have one of the pair log in to save both videos and share it with their partner.

At this point of the lesson with the first pair, I realized a problem that was going to happen! Because of wifi issues, we have to share videos through Seesaw via a link. So the videos in Drive have to have the right sharing permissions. I could quickly see this becoming a logistics nightmare. Thankfully, by this point, my tech teaching partner, Ryan, had been hired and was in on the lesson. Mr. King and Ryan managed the students who were doing the recording, doing the saving, and also the students who were waiting to record.

I was asking the students who had uploaded their videos to come to me with their Chromebooks and was quickly making a folder in their drive that had the right permissions so that anything in the folder could be shared and viewed. I realized that I was only reaching about half of the students with this but it was the best that I could do during this lesson.

Once we got all of the permissions sorted, the student were then taught to grab the link and post it into Seesaw. This is the point where I started recruiting students to teach each other as well. With the teachers all busy problem solving I asked the students to teach each other how to grab the link and post it. This was a great confidence boost for some students as well as a reinforcement of what they had just done themselves.

By the skin of our teeth, we managed to get all but about three videos posted. But during the following week, those student experts helped their classmates finish posting the remaining videos.

The next stage was to have the students create audio reflections on a post. Again there were three teachers in the classroom and again we used a similar method of capturing pictures as we had in the first lesson. Once the students posted the picture they moved to their Chromebooks and recorded an audio reflection for their post. Absolutely the most helpful part of this lesson was that the teacher had already prepared the students for what they were going to say by having them write out their reflection prior to our coming into the class. So there was no time wasted with students trying to remember or draft what to say while also learning how to record.

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.d405230d-b609-448e-8fb5-43c0427e81eb&share_token=4GLf88SlSYyRGbMZApb4xQ&mode=share

Here is an example of that lesson.

This lesson still took about an hour, but that was mostly due to everyone not recording at the same time and the sharing of the iPads. One system we have worked out with the iPads is to use the same iPad for the same students as their google logins are partially saved that way. So each iPad now has a sticky note on it with the student’s names.

By this point, we were basically finished and the class was good to go, but Mr. King knew that he was going to be out for two upcoming days and asked that we come in and do additional lessons with the students. His idea was for them to record themselves completing a Math exit slip and posting that recording. But Ryan and I emailed him and asked if we could instead try out the new Activities feature. He said “Of Course” and so we got everything ready.

We started the lesson by telling the students that they were helping us learn by testing this feature since it would be our first time. Again this helps to set up the expectations for the lesson and I feel it really makes the students less stressed about mistakes. I think this is also helpful in building the relationships with the students that Carolyn Fruin references in her post What to Do When Your Flipped Classroom Flops.

When we explained what we were going to do the students at first were a bit “Aw, but we want to do the videos” as they had already done a similar post with Mr. King. We asked them to help us try it and they finally agreed. So we gave directions and then let them loose.

Here is what they created!

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.475ce4ab-2665-48b8-9528-6ffc4eb3bc11&share_token=wslBsASdTyqtkGOcrCsZDA&mode=share

What I like is that you can hear Emma go through her entire thinking process. Even though she gets distracted a few times and says a few things wrong. You can still see that she does understand and trusts that she knows that she is right. It also gives you a clear understanding of some support that Emma may need. She may need to talk through her math thinking with a peer or an adult to make sure that she is explaining her thinking clearly.

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.1b06b09d-387f-4d4d-ba5d-0f7d3ba8c55d&share_token=pDssAIk7QfqcDc-CKx2ggQ&mode=share

Itamar did a better job of explaining his thinking more clearly. Maybe it would be good for him and Emma to be partners so that Emma can hear an example of a good, clear explanation.

Our feedback from the students when we reflected at the end, was that they wanted more white space to write in. The problem took up too much space so they found the writing space too limited. This made me realize that the system we used for this specific problem would not always work for every type of math problem. They did admit that they liked the activity in the end and that they wanted Mr. King to do more!

Overall I have been very impressed with the work that the student’s, Mr. King, Ryan and I did during these sessions because I think it has set his students up to not only succeed at Seesaw but with anything else. I even mentioned to them that the patience and resilience that they showed when we ran into issues would help them because you always have to learn “workarounds” because you will always run into roadblocks! They seemed to take that as a compliment!

I have also received feedback from their PE teachers that when they use Seesaw in PE, Mr. King’s class is the most prepared to complete any task that the PE teachers have thrown at them.

PBL, CBL, PBL, PB&J What Does it all Mean?

So I decided this week to branch out and do a podcast instead of your typical post.

A couple of things I have learned!

  1. I sound very echoey
  2. I need to better annunciate (hence the reason I am also posting the script)
  3. My speed is generally okay as is my volume
  4. I want to try again at a later date with another blog post.
  5. It is hard to make edits like I have realized I want in the script (edits in bold and Italics)

Script

Let’s start with some definitions:

The book How to Use Problem-Based Learning in the Classroom by Robert Delisle on the ASCD’s website quotes Howard Barrows’ definition of Problem Based Learning as “the learning that results from the process of working toward the understanding or resolution of a problem”

The Buck Institute defines on their website that Project Based Learning as a teaching method in which students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to an authentic, engaging and complex question, problem, or challenge.

Digital Promise defines on their website that Challenge Based Learning as learning that provides an efficient and effective framework for learning while solving real-world Challenges.

I think it is easy to see that all three of these are basically the same idea. I am sure they have small elements that are subtly different from each other but I was struck by how alike they were while I was reading about them.

Just some of the similarities are that they:

  • All mention real life preparation
  • They all revolve around students identifying a problem and working towards a solution
  • They all ask for students to explore outside the 4 classroom walls
  • They all require student-driven research
  • They all require teachers as mentors
  • They all mention the use of technology
  • They all leave space for learning from failure

This week we were asked to write a blog post on how these apply to your curricular area, grade level, and own theory on technology in the classroom. While I do not teach in one classroom I still feel that these approaches are a key element of education. Our school, in fact, has been working towards developing skills and dispositions that would be elements of all three of these theories. The most obvious of which is self-directed learning.

One of the arguments that I hear a lot around these three theories is that “they are great for middle and high school, but I just can’t see how you can do this with first graders.” I have to respectfully disagree. While I do agree that there are elements of first grade that need to be more traditionally practiced, there is a lot that can be done with PBL (I will use this for both Problem and Project) and CBL learning. Yes, it will be more guided that you may do with a high school student but it is very possible to do.

I can’t think of a more effective way to teach students the value of research than to have them state a problem that they are interested in solving and then helping them to find the research they need to understand the problem and possible solutions. I can see this as having a much more lasting impact on their learning then asking them research something that you as the teacher decided on.

I can also see that the younger grades are where we can really leverage technology to help students share their process. For many in the younger grades, writing up their research or their findings is not a realistic idea. But videoing them talking about their research or recording them in a podcast talking about their research is not only developmentally appropriate it is a very effective use of technology in an authentic way. Which is a key element of PBL and CBL.

This is where I come in my role as the integrationist could be to come in and offer Tech training and knowledge to students are the right time for when they need it. Also offering the teacher training in the technology. I also see my role in this process as mentoring the teachers in the ways in which they can manage 20 students going off doing potentially 20 different projects at the same time. Technology can help teachers manage the individual communication between the teacher and the student as well as the collection of data along checkpoints to monitor the student’s progress through a project. For example, using Google Classroom to keep track of the activities happening with a project.

I do think that to be very effective and not be completely overwhelmed by these projects, technology will need to play a huge role. Yes, you can do things with paper but imagine if you as a teacher need two days to read over students research journals. If they are doing this with only paper then the students would either need to stop researching for two days or use another journal. If the teacher used technology the students could take photos of their research journal, share those photos with their teacher and then the students could continue with their research. Also, teachers could make this a process that happens frequently throughout the research, anytime a new “chunk” of research is gathered the students could submit it for feedback, which would give the teacher smaller checkpoints to give feedback to instead of large ones.

I think that many people worry that if we have students doing PBL and CBL nearly full time then there will be no need for teachers after all the students will be deciding what they are learning, how they are learning and how they are sharing that learning all on their own. The key element that the naysayers are forgetting is that students don’t just “know” how to do this. This is where teachers come it. While doing a PBL or CBL teachers could offer mini-lessons with small groups or the whole class when needed to teach a skill right at the perfect time when those students need it.

For example, teachers could offer a how to read data lesson for students who find their research is full of data. Which could lead to a lesson on how to collect data which could then help the students towards their goal of identifying problems and identifying solutions.

So in conclusion, I think that there is a place for PBL and CBL even in our younger grades and I do not see the role of the teacher as disappearing but morphing into something more along the lines of a Teacher Mentor who swoops in to help you when you need it and leaves you to discover, fail, scramble and succeed when you thought that you wouldn’t be able to.

Sources:

“What Is Project Based Learning (PBL)?” What Is PBL? | Project Based Learning | BIE, Buck Institute for Education, 2017, http://www.bie.org/about/what_pbl.

Delisle, Robert. “Chapter 1. What Is Problem-Based Learning?” What Is Problem-Based Learning?, ASCD, http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/197166/chapters/What_Is_Problem-Based_Learning%C2%A2.aspx.

“Key Ideas.” Challenge Based Learning, Digital Promise, cbl.digitalpromise.org/about/key-ideas/.

Hey, That’s My Job!

I started my readings this week by looking at the article written in 2007 on Edutopia titled What Is Successful Technology Integration?. While reading what immediately struck me is that while there are a couple of mentioned technologies that are not as heavily used today, the article is still relevant. What also struck me is that if you removed the date and gave that article to some teachers even 10 years on, they would be like “Wow, this is so relevant and new.” Which tells me two things. Firstly, that the articles points were valid in 2007 and are still valid in 2017. Secondly, that my job is safe for at least the foreseeable future!

As a Tech Integrationist (or IT Integrationist, or Tech Coach, or ICT Teacher or whatever term you are used to hearing!) I have had people tell me, “Oh, your job won’t exist soon because once all teachers will reach a point where they are integrating technology and they won’t need you.” Well, I disagree. I think that with the speed with which technology changes makes my job is safe for a while. I think that schools who take on the attitude of “We have everyone trained, so now we can eliminate the tech integration jobs because we don’t need them anymore.”, are doing a disservice to their teachers. They are leaving their teachers without the support that they will need to continue to move forward. Yes, they may be great at integrating technology at that point in time, but do you want to keep them at that same point for the next 5 years or do you want them to continue to develop and grow. I argue that if you want them to continue to develop and grow then you will continue to need Tech Integrators in your school.

Who is going to do the research? Who is going to challenge practices? Who is going to tell you “great you are at the Augmentation or the Modification step in the SAMR step of the SAMR model but what are you doing to move the Redefinition?” Who is going to keep track of the updates for applications and devices? Who is going to show teachers what is new and how they can tweak the practice that they are already doing to move themselves into better more authentic Tech Integration?

This article also made me think about that fact that many people do not know the difference between Technology Integration and Technology Implementation. I was a part of a group of educators who helped the IB develop the document titled Teaching and Learning with Technology and a big part of the early discussions were based on the difference between Integration and Implementation.

Another article I have saved from the past, is What’s the Difference Between “Using Technology” and “Technology Integration”? Which has a good visual to help see the difference between using technology vs integrating with technology?

I also like Jeff Utecht’s post titled I don’t want to integrate it, I want to embed it! I think his point is where all tech integrators what to be. Not an add-on that teachers use to ask for help but actually part of the process of planning for units from the ground up. Giving teachers that voice to remind them that they are embedding technology already but if they tweak this or that then they will be redefining their technology use, their curriculum, and their classrooms. Being able to make small changes to units to move technology use up the SAMR model instead of having to always suggest seemingly huge steps.

Our assignment this week is to look at the SAMR or the TPACK model and see where we are in it. This is where the “fun” part comes. Notice the “” marks! I say fun part with sarcasm because, how exactly can we do this? How should we rate ourselves and our technology use? That is a question that is asked repeatedly and I still don’t really know how best to answer it!

I generally go with something like. Well for Book Creator I would put myself in the level of Modification and Redefinition. But for iMovie, I would put myself in the realm of Augmentation and Modification. For me, it depends on the technology that I am using. It also depends on what I am doing with that technology and who I am working with. Many times I am working with a teacher and we are simply trying to move them from the Substitution to the Augmentation. I think because of this sometimes my own practice gets a bit stuck because until I have a large number of teachers above moving towards Modification and Redefinition, I am not challenged to move myself along either. Because I have found that sometimes I am too far removed from the lower steps and I intimidate teachers with suggestions because they are still in Substitution and what I am suggesting might be in Modification, which they are not ready for. So when I evaluate my own tech knowledge sometimes I find that I get stuck in a lower level than I would expect from myself.

For example, I have moved my knowledge of Google Sites from Substitution through Augmentation and I thought that I was getting closer to moving up the SAMR model but then I got feedback from my Course 3 Final Project. Some of my feedback from Ryan was:

“Your site is full of information, but if we look back at some of our learnings about visual literacy and design in this course, I feel like it may be a bit too text heavy. While it’s great to have lots of info, if it was turned into an actual resume it would be quite a few pages. Something to think about. In our quick click society, it may need to be paired back to a more visual experience. Could you think about it as a digital story? What story are you trying to tell via your website? The portfolio page is a great example of this as it tells the story of your work in an engaging, multimedia way.”

I hadn’t even thought about that fact that for most of my website I am simply in the Substitution stage. I have basically made a paper resume on a website. BORING! Some of this is because of my complete aversion to wanting to be on video. And some is simply because until another Tech Integrator looked at it and said “but, hey it isn’t really that new and innovative.” that I went, “Huh, So true! I hadn’t even realized that I was only in Substitution”. This is exactly why I think my job is safe for the foreseeable future, but what us Tech Integrators/Coaches have to do is help the directors, principals, board members, and HR departments understand is that there will never be a point where we are not needed if we are effectively moving technology towards being embedded into the school culture, curriculum, and pedagogy.

These two videos explain the SAMR and TPACK models by their creators.

Sources:

“SAMR.” Grandview Instructional Technology, Grandview School District, http://www.csd4tech.com/samr.html.

Rao, Aditi. “What’s the Difference Between ‘Using Technology’ and ‘Technology Integration’?” TeachBytes, TeachBytes, 20 Apr. 2013, teachbytes.com/2013/03/29/whats-the-difference-between-using-technology-and-technology-integration/.

Koehler, Matthew. “TPACK Explained.” TPACK.ORG, TPACK.ORG, 9 June 2017, matt-koehler.com/tpack2/tpack-explained/.

“How to Apply SAMR.” FUTURE-U.org, future-u.org/samrmodel/.

“Just Kill Me Now!”, Death by Slideshow

After watching David Phillip’s TEDx Talk about How to Avoid Death by Powerpoint I realized that maybe we are doing it wrong. I don’t mean creating presentations. I mean teaching students that they need to know how their presentation will be viewed before they start. “Is there going to be a live audience or is it designed for the audience to read?” How many of us have asked students that question? I wonder if telling students to use Slides for things that are designed to be read is in and of itself part of the problem.

Instead, we need to look at other options for making things that are designed to be read by the audience. There are many ways that we can create resources that are designed to be read. For example, Book Creator is now available on Chrome, why not make books for information that are designed to be read. Books are designed to be read, therefore people have a different attitude towards the way they engage with them. When an audience is given a book they are expecting to take time and read each element on the page. That is what we do with books.

If our goal is to present then our audience expects to listen. Listening and reading are not always hand in hand. The point that David Phillips and this blog post titled The Scientific Reason Why Bullets Are Bad for Presentations where Dr. Atherton is quoted as saying

“that when you accompany a lecture with bullet point slides, your audience will switch between reading and listening. This type of task switching is cognitively exhausting.”

The article is mainly discussing the woes of bullet points but the principles apply to sentences on presentations as well which is one of David Phillips’s things to avoid.

Basically, they are all saying the same thing less, less, less. Not less slides as David Phillips says.

“Amount of slides in a powerpoint has never been the problem, the amount of objects on a slide is the problem”

Less stuff on the slides. Making sure that the slide is simply something to visually represent the speaking point.

So reflecting back on a slideshow that I created at the beginning of the year. The original plan was to have some time to present it to all of the ES teachers during the orientation days. That time got shrunk to 5 minutes and so my slides went from 24 slides to 3. The 3 slides that I did present were very minimalist since I planned on speaking to them. But the rest of the slides were shared with teachers with the expectation that they read them.

Now I think that I should have created another type of resource. With that in mind, I am going to reimage the slideshow as a book in the new Book Creator for Chrome app. I would share that but it turns out that there are so many more options in Book Creator that I have fallen down the rabbit hole and hope to come up sometime around the Course 3 final project!

I can show you this Slides presentation:

Which I originally thought wasn’t too bad but then I think I have improved it with some modifications to things like the titles on each slide.

A couple of things. This is designed for a workshop that I do so the URL in the top right corner is helpful because people occasionally join in the middle of the session. Also, I do these as visual references and then talk the audience through the building of a sample site. I find that if I do it live they lose the spot, so if I have images they can look back up to see where to go. So the first slide is generally up for at least 5-6 minutes as everyone is coming in so it is not really part of the presentation, the same with the last slide.

PS. The reason that I don’t embed YouTube videos in my blog posts, but link to them instead can be found by reading this blog post Bloggers Beware: You CAN Get Sued For Using Pics on Your Blog – My Story.

PSS. Just for fun! Death by Powerpoint comedy skit!

Are New Tools Changing Teaching and Learning?

EQ: Have (and if so, how have) teaching and learning changed with the introduction of new tools?

This is a very good question. The answer to this question is both Yes and No. Yes, teaching and learning are changing when you consider that teachers are becoming less experts in their subject areas and more mentors. But No, because teachers are still a necessary part of the process.

Yes, teaching and learning are needed for effective planning and guiding of experiences. No teachers are not needed to stand at the front of the room for every lesson and lecture.

I guess my point is that teaching and learning are transitioning from one “style” to another. That being said it isn’t a 100% switch. Teachers will still need to do things that are considered “traditional” at times, but the traditional system of the teacher as expert standing at the front of the room lecturing even to young students will be less and less frequent.

Part of the reason for this is because educators are tired of seeing students not succeed simply because this system doesn’t work for them. Teachers intrinsically want to see all students succeed. To have a student who doesn’t succeed for no other reason but that the system is not ideal for them is frustrating. Teachers, in general, hate that and try very hard to avoid it.

Education in some circles is moving away from one size fits all to everyone has their own size and we teach them what is best for them. I think that the tools that come with the introduction of technology can play a huge role in this. For example, a simple app Book Creator on the iPad and now Book Creator Web App on your browser are both simple apps that allow students to build resources for themselves to help throughout their schooling.

I have had classes use @BookCreator to create a math reference book. They started at the beginning of the year creating a page with each new math concept that they learned. The students would each create a page explaining the concept in their words, that they could reference in the future when they needed it. The first time we did this was with 5th graders but it could be started in any grade. This could absolutely be done to some level with a paper notebook. But the app allows this reference book to go into the modification level of the SAMR model, with the ability to add audio recordings and video recordings.

In this case, technology is changing elements of teaching and learning. But at the same time, the math concepts may be being taught in a traditional method. I think that the issues that many forward-thinking teachers get frustrated with the time it takes to get schools to move forward in the ways that they can see a school should. This goes back to my previous post that teachers can be hesitant to change. I think that admin falls into this as well.

I think it is very important for schools wanting to move forward to be sure to vet new staff for the mindset and attitude that will allow this to happen. I can think of several teachers at my school that I would like to clone because of their attitude towards change. These teachers see change as a challenge that they want to face head-on, but that they want support while doing it. Which is where I come in, my role as the ES Tech Integrationist is to help support teachers so that they can use technology. But it goes beyond that I am often times helping teachers see new ways to deliver lessons, collect evidence for assessment and plan for new experiences.

Google Expeditions in Grade One

These are the student’s reflections after being introduced to Google Expeditions during their unit on how journeys provide experiences that expand our knowledge and understanding of the world.

I basically showed them how to get around in Expeditions for about 5 – 10 minutes guiding them to understand how to switch between the different slides. Then we let them explore.

Here is what they thought!

img_0044img_0047img_0053img_0039img_0051