Friday, November 21, 2014

This Week @Elkmont & Beyond November 17-21, 2014

Student Voice and Choice #StuVoice

One thing the 3rd and 4th grade DPI teachers have embraced this year is empowering student voice and choice via the MacBooks they received this year.

Ms. Anita Bates gave her students the task of writing a first person narratives about a food chain of their choice. Students could use StoryBird, Google Slides, or iMovie to create their story. These stories will be used to help teach grammar and science for the next several weeks. Final stories will be published for other kids in our school and around the world to read.

Ms. Luann Adams let's her students show tech tips they have discovered with the rest of the class. Thursday, Bobbie Jo had discovered a way to make collecting images for use in projects easier by dragging and dropping images onto the desktop. Ms. Adams had Bobbie Jo come up to the front of the classroom to use the Promethean Board to demonstrate to other students her tech tip.

Many teachers are nervous about technology coming into the classroom because they want to have mastery over the technology. The reality is that none of use truly has mastery when talking about use of technology. What we do have is good teaching practices that will make integrating tech into our classrooms easier. We also have STUDENTS who discover new tech tricks everyday and can help teach other students and their teacher. This creates a classroom where everyone is invested in learning together, makes failing or not knowing "OK", and empowers students to be confident in their own abilities to discover and learn on their own rather than waiting for their teacher to tell them what they should learn.

Student voice & choice creates a win-win situation in the classroom!

Modern Totem Poles

Elkmont High School's brilliant Elementary Art Teacher, Breanna Ingle, turns student art into beautiful collaborative art pieces. This week Ms. Ingle put together Modern Totem Poles! How clever!

Tech Tuesdays Coming in 2015 to Elkmont!

After hearing of the great success Casie Barksdale from Tanner has had with Wireless Wednesdays, Elkmont will begin offering Tech Tuesday classes each Tuesday right after school from 3:00-4:00. Our first Tech Tuesday will be Tuesday, January 6, 2015.

Topics will cover a variety of technologies based on teacher interest. Topics covered at Tanner have included:

  • Using Twitter as PD
  • How to add a signature to your email
  • How to set up group contacts in email
  • Technologies for Formative Assessments
  • Using Google Forms & Flubaroo to make quizzes that grade themselves
  • Other suggestions from teachers (please email suggestions to Ms. Nikki Robertson)

eBooks Come To Elkmont High School

Students at Elkmont High School learned about our new ebook selection when they visited librarians, Ms. Joanna Schrimsher & Ms. Beverly Henley this week.

Ms. Tina McMunn's students were excited that they could read books on their MacBook Air laptops and were soon engrossed in reading ebooks.

Check out the great ebooks Elkmont High School's library now has here:

Tweeting with The White House for #FutureReady Schools  

Wednesday, November 19, 2014 at 11:00 CT I participated in #EdTechChat's #FutureReady Twitter chat with President Obama and The White House moderated by Tom Murray.  The conversation was not only fun, but informative and very important to the future of our schools.  It is moments like these that I am grateful to be a connected educator.

EdCamp SandMtn

Saturday, November 22, 2014 I attended EdCampSandMtn organized by my friends, Michael Fowlkes & Janna Bonds.  I was thrilled to meet awesome educators and be reunited with some of my EdCamp friends: Angie Bush, Carmen Buchanan, Carol McLaughlin,  Faith Plunkett, Amanda Dykes, Kelly Etheredge & Chris Jenks.  

One of my favorite sessions I attended was the one lead by Faith Pluckett.  Faith is one of the Entertainment Technology teachers in Huntsville City Schools.  She teaches Coding, Robotics and Gaming to Pre-K through 5th grades.  Faith will be presenting at Disney in December at the Blue Ribbon School of Excellence National Conference.  During her session we got to program BeeBots, play with a Sphero, and learn how to teach our students coding even if we don't have devices!

If you have never attended an EdCamp event you are missing out on the best free PD EVER!  Find out where there will be an EdCamp near you HERE.  If there is no EdCamp near you...start your own!

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