Thursday, August 12, 2010

Blogging Offers Opportunities for Authentic Learning

Hello Everyone,
It is back to school time and that means time for me to update my blog. This year I am excited to be working with teachers on the importance of authentic assignments. Students need opportunities to experience higer-level thinking, to be encouraged and guided to construct knowledge, and to elaborate their thinking through written communication. Authentic assignments are perfect for this and they also have a way of allowing students to make connections to the world beyond the classroom.

Today I found that Edublogs has a new blog directory. The directory will allow teachers and students to connect much easier with others around the world. I love the idea of students getting responses/feedback to their post from another collaborating classroom.

The directory is easy to use and has categories such as: Elementary, English, History, Mathematics, English as a Second Language, Technology Education, Library, etc.

I have added my own blog to the directory and encourage you to do the same!

Find this blog in the education blogs directory

Monday, March 8, 2010

India Trip

I had a blast! Take a look at the phtos:


Friday, February 12, 2010


This video is fantastic, I couldn't have said it better!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Debate 1 - Teams 16 and 1

Hello Everyone,
I ran accross a great example of an online debate created on VoiceThread. I think it would be fantastic for students who are preparing for a debate to watch this first expecially since it has the judges comments included.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Flat Classroom Project

I am trilled to share that I am signed up to attend the Flat Classroom Workshop in Mumbai, India at the American School of Bombay February 24-27, 2010! The Flat Classroom Project has been an interest of mine for several years. This project is focused on students in grades 9-12. Participants are paired up and presented with cross curricular lessons that bring students into collaboration with each other in ways not possible in the regular classroom. Here is a link that will provide detailed information about how to get involved: Flat Classroom Projects 2009-2010

I have been wanting to become involved with the project, but I do not have a classroom of my own so I can only promote/support this work. If you teach high school students and are interested in participating please know that I will be willing to provide additional support as needed. Here is a video explaining the project in a little more detail:

Thursday, June 4, 2009

School Laptops: Norway versus Philadelphia

June is the time of year when I like to chill out by the pool and read. Recently, I was looking through my Spring 2009 issue of GOOD magazine and found an interesting article. It discussed the observations of two inner city high school classes that are both using laptops. One class was in Norway and the other Philadelphia. The Norwegian students were working on problem solving with the use of freeware that challenges them to build the cheapest functional bridge. Meanwhile; back in the United States, kids were plotting simple inequalities on a number line. BORING!!!

As a frequent participant in school observations, it is sad how frequently I see students who are not challenged or given the intellectual freedom to solve problems in creative and unique ways. For the most part, students in our district are being taught what the teachers believe will help them on standardized test. According to Andreas Schleicher, "The skills that are easiest to teach and test are also the ones that are easiest to digitise, automate and outsource." Is that what the United States is working toward? We all know that in "real life" problems don't come with multiple choice answers. Since life is not a standardized test; I believe we need to either find a better way to test students on how well they can use the knowledge they are gaining at school, or begin teaching in a way that will ensure students can solve problems that require more than multiple choice answers.

Here is a link & image below to the freeware mentioned in the article: