Monday, June 23, 2014

MIND/SHIFT: Create, Capture, Upload: New Site Features Kids’ Digital Projects

I love Mind/Shift!!! ... continually sharing ideas and innovations on education and learning.
Apparently, a new free site has been created for children to post their projects and work. Although I haven't explored it, it seems like a great idea! Pictures can be uploaded by kids with comments or explanations about the project. It could be as simple as sharing a 100% on a spelling test. Friends or relatives could view the success!
It is privacy protected.
DIY could  be a place that students can post projects created in class possibly. I'm anxious to hear about this success of this site.
Create, Capture, Upload: New Site Features' Digital Projects, May 1, 2012

Here is another link and slideshow from here & now, Wednesday, November 28, 2012
 DIY Website For Kids Is A Gallery Of Ideas

NPR: To Boost Attendance, Milwaukee Schools Revive Art, Music And Gym

The specials are soooo important to students, especially those who excel in art, music, or physical /sports activities. Specials don't necessarily give students a break from the 3r's as mentioned in the last sentence of the recording. Instead the specials give the brain a chance to reconfigure. More brain breaks most likely will awaken neurons that may have be idling or waiting for action. Why can't more art, music, and physical activities be included/integrated with academics! This might assist some students with engaging in academic areas which are either uninteresting or a struggle for some students.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Emotions, Learning and Technology

My Voicethread on using emotions to facilitate learning while using technology can be found @

Play: A Great Way to Create Memories

My Voicethread on Play and Learning can be found @

Using Bloom's Taxonomy to Write Rubrics

Emphasis Goal Verbs to Use

Recognition and recall-the ability to remember facts in the way they were first presented.
Show that you know.
List, tell, define, identify, label, locate, recognize.

Grasp the meaning and intent of information-the ability to explain or translate into your own words.
Show that you understand.
Explain, illustrate, describe, summarize, interpret, expand, convert.

Use of information-the ability to apply learning to new situations and real-life circumstances.
Show that you can use what you have learned.
Demonstrate, apply, use, construct, find solutions, collect information, perform, solve, choose appropriate procedures.

Reasoning-the ability to break down information into component parts and to detect relationships of one part to another and to the whole.
Show that you perceive and can pick out the most important points in material presented.
Analyze, debate, differentiate, generalize, conclude, organize, determine, distinguish.

Show that you can combine concepts to create an original or new idea.
Create, design, plan, produce, compile, develop, invent.

Show that you can judge and evaluate ideas, information, procedures, and solutions.
Compare, decide, evaluate, conclude, contrast, develop, criteria, assess, appraise.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Communication, Collaboration, Publication with Web 2.0 Tools and NET-S

EDIM502 (u05a1) Blog - Students Meeting the NET-S

Wake up Departments of Education  in America!
Today is July 29, 2012. We are in the 21st century! What students are learning now should reflect on their futures after their schooling. But, will they? That might depend on the aggressiveness of our national, state, and local education departments' mindsets.

Let's see what other professional leaders are saying that the workforce needs.:
*The CEO of UPS described in 2005, "We look for [employees] who can learn how to learn"  (Jerald, 2009).
*Howard Elias, President of EMC, an American multinational corporation, stated in an article in Forbes online that there is a shortage of people with critical skills in science, technology, engineering, and math - mostly in cloud computing and big data" (Elias, 2011).  Later he stated, "As adoption of these transformative technologies continues there is an increasing demand for highly specialized skills that didn't exist or were well outside the mainstream" (Elias, 2011). Then in the article he stated that companies are relying on innovators to generate products and services to advance economic growth (Elias, 2011). "If the US companies are to sate their thirst for qualified talent, fill that growing void and compete in the 21st century, we must recognize the challenge, seize the initiative, and accelerate viable solutions to address this pressing need. The problem starts early" (Elias, 2011). He goes on to discuss how our education system currently is not preparing enough students with needed proficiencies.
*Craig Jerald from the Center for Public Education has written the following, " In our global knowledge economy  these (American) companies realize human capital is their most important resource. As a result, jobs - especially those in globally competitive firms - are changing in 4 key ways:
     1.  Less hierarchy and supervision
     2.  More autonomy and responsibility
     3.  More collaboration
     4.  Less predictability and stability" (Jerald, 2009)

ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) has developed the NET-S (National Educational Technology Standards) to prepare students globally for the 21st century global market. Web 2.0 digital tools enable students to communicate, collaborate, and publish utilizing various platforms to meet the needs of the future job market nationally and internationally using the NET-S. We may not know all of the types of jobs the future might hold, but students of educators using the NET-S will have the cutting edge. The following are the NET-S along with the verbs to reflect the actions to be completed digitally:
     1.  Creativity and Innovation: Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology - apply, create, use models, forecast.
     2.  Communication and Collaboration:  Students use digital media and environments to communicate collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others - interact, collaborate, publish, develop, contribute, communicate.
     3.  Research and Information Fluency:  Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information - plan, organize, evaluate, synthesize, process, report.
     4.  Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making:  Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate tools and resources - plan, manage, collect, analyze, explore.
     5. Digital Citizenship:  Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior - advocate, practice, exhibit, demonstrate.
     6. Technology Operations and Concepts:  Students demonstrate a sound understanding of technology concepts, systems, and operations - use, select, troubleshoot, transfer
(ISTE, 2011).

Bloom's Taxonomy of the learning hierarchy names Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation as the goals which educators should aim. On Bloom's Taxonomy - Learning in Action wheel, each learning objective list verbs that fit the action of the objectives. Here are some of the verbs listed for each of the three higher objectives:
     Analysis: compare, analyze, classify, distinguish,  categorize, differentiate, infer, survey, graph, report
     Synthesize:  compose, hypothesize, develop, design, combine, construct, produce, plan, create
     Evaluate: judge, relate, criticize, support, evaluate, summarize, compare, recommend, critique
 ("Bloom's taxonomy," 2012)

In my mind, both the NET-S and Bloom's objectives have verbs that are the same, if not similar. ISTE, professional business leaders, and the Center for Public Education are ready to challenge our students for their future. If only those making the decisions for what is currently existing in our school system would see what is truly needed, more technology, training, and better standards that will allow our students to communicate, collaborate, and publish using digital technology, progress in the right direction would be made for our future global communities. Web 2.0 tools would permit students to be creative and innovative, communicate, collaborate, research and process the information, think critically, problem solve, make decisions, show understanding of the importance of digital citizenship, and demonstrate understanding of technological operations and concepts using the various platforms available worldwide appropriately. The vast tools available now are at our fingertips. Let's advocate for their use in our education systems with the hopes that positive change will be soon!

Below are just a few of the tools that can be utilized educationally for different functional platforms:
     To communicate (NET-S #1, 2, 3 4, 5, 6):  Skype, Edmodo, Twitter, Kid Blog, Blogger, Google+ Hangout, Chatterous, Voicethread, Podcasting, RSS feeds, Voki, Gabcast
     To colloborate (NET-S #1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6):  Glogster, Wikispaces, Google Tools (Calendar, Docs), Prezi, Diigo, Desire2Learn, Moodle, Second Life, GoToMeeting, WizIQ
     To publish (NET-S # 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6): Google Tools (Presentations, SketchUp), Prezi, Glogster, Slideshare, Wix, Zooburst, Animoto, Fakebook, Bookemon, Voicethread

Many tools can fit several platforms.


 Bloom's taxonomy. (2012, July 27).Retrieved from

Elias, H. (2011, December 12). Do Americans have 21st century job skills?. Forbes, Retrieved from

ISTE. (2011). Net-s for students 2007. Retrieved from

Jerald, C. D. (2009). Defining a 21st century education. The Center for Public Education, Retrieved from

Saturday, June 30, 2012

About Project Based Learning

EDIM502 (u01a1) Blog - PBL

 According to Buck Institute for Education (2012), “Project Based Learning is an instructional approach built upon authentic learning activities that engage student interest and motivation. These activities are designed to answer a question or solve a problem and generally reflect the types of learning and work people do in the everyday world outside the classroom.” Teachers engaging students in the Project Based Learning model are utilizing interdisciplinary 21st century real-life skills to prepare students for jobs after finishing their formal education. Project Based Learning teaches students to seek answers to questions and encourages life-long learning. Project Based Learning (PBL) transforms the roles of the students and the role of the teacher.

 Here are some wonderful examples of PBL and this transformation:

More Fun Than a Barrel of...Worms?!  by Diane Curtis @ Edutopia

Geometry Students Angle into Architecture Through Project Learning by Sara Armstrong @ Edutopia

 March of the Monarchs: Students Follow the Butterflies' Migration by Diane Curtis @ Edutopia

As noticed in the examples, the teacher’s role is to gather students’ background knowledge and present the Big Idea  (Johnson, 2012, p. 8)or broad topic that would be of importance and interest to the students. The teacher is like a facilitator. Peer teams or groups might be formed to work together. Guiding Questions, Activities (Johnson, 2012, p. 8), tools, games, simulations, and Guiding Resources (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) are provided for students so that they can solve the Essential Question (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) that they have formulated on the topic and meet the curriculum and standards that are required. Ensuring that the needs of all children are met is important. Like a manager, the teacher assists in the creation or creates the time management needed for the projects. Students' progress is monitored. Feedback, guidance or suggestions are given. Rubrics for Assessment (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) are created either by the teacher or with assistance with the students.

 The students’ roles in the PBL examples are extremely active and hands-on. Their job is to solve the problems involving the Essential Question that was elicited. After participating in activities and explorations that the teacher or students have chosen, students develop their Solutions (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) to the Essential Question. These Solutions or Actions (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) are shared with peers, tested or fine-tuned, implemented, and then presented to their class, school, and/or community. Findings are usually Published (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) in some manner whether through sample observations or multi-media sources. The students’ final job is to Reflect (Johnson, 2012, p. 8) on what was learned or accomplished.

 Student engagement is a definite plus for PBL. Parents love the excitement that they see from their children/teens. Ingo Schiller, a parent of two Newsome Park students stated, “There’s actually a visible hunger to learn” (Curtis, 2001). Students are enthusiastic and search for knowledge. In the video Journey North: Children Practice Real Science by Monitoring Butterflies (Curtis, 2002), Frances Koontz, the teacher, mentioned that students take ownership of their work. They act like scientists and interact with real scientists. Just by using this model, Frances was able to cover language arts, math, science and social requirements.

Project Based Learning implements real life application to real life problems/challenges. Good work habits, communication skills, peer collaboration, strategy building, creative thinking, and use of 21st Century tools and resources prepare students for today’s world and their futures.


Armstrong, S.  (2002). Geometry students angle into architecture through project learning [article].                Retrieved on June 30, 2012 from   architects

Buck Institute for Education (2012). What is project-based learning? [article] retrieved on June 30, 2012 from

Curtis, D. (2002). Journey north: Children practice real science by monitoring monarchs. [Video file] Retrieved June 30, 2012, from

Curtis, D.  (2002). March of the monarchs:  Students follow the butterflies’ migration [article]. Retrieved on June 30, 2012 from

Curtis, D.  (2001). More fun than a barrel of . . . worms?! [article].  Retrieved on June 28, 2012 from

Johnson, L. F.; Smith, R. S.; Smythe, J. T.; Varon, R. K. (2009). Challenge-based learning: An approach for our time. Austin, TX: The News Media Consortium. Retrieved on June 30, 2012 from