Edutech for Teachers

Cool Tools for the 21st Century Classroom

Spotlight on Strategies: The Question Is…

August31

spotlight-on-strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog, and with permission from Discovery Education, I am now featuring some of these techniques on my space.

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s spotlight—The Question Is…—is a formative assessment strategy that can be utilized to guide instruction, intervention planning and delivery. 

Background

Formative assessment can help teachers better understand what students have learned as they progress through a unit of study. As a result, it’s important to find creative, effective and efficient ways to incorporate ongoing formative assessment. This strategy is easy to implement, requires no preparation, and uses materials commonly found in most classrooms. Yep, all you need is the answer to a pre-determined question and some sticky notes for student use. And best of all? It works in any classroom, with any age group!

The Question Is… technique is also a good springboard for classroom discussion, if students are asked to justify the questions they are posting, and obviously, it affords students an opportunity to practice formulating questions as well.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed and step-by-step instructions for utilizing the The Question Is… strategy in the classroom.

There’s even a video overview you can check out here. Pretty cool, eh?

And last, but certainly not least, here’s a visual to get those wheels turning…

the question is example

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then take the digital integration challenge by trying to implement the Half the Story strategy and/or one of these additional ideas into a classroom lesson:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

» Concept Circles

» The Envelope Please

» Get Venn-y with It!

» MVP

» Partner Time

» Half the Story

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: Half the Story

August11

spotlight-on-strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog, and with permission from Discovery Education, I am now featuring some of these techniques on my space.

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s spotlight—Half the Story—is a simple strategy that can be utilized to ignite a conversation about any topic.

Background

How many of us have ever struggled to begin student conversation around a particular topic? They say pictures are worth a thousand words.  If this is true, why wouldn’t we use images as a springboard to discussion.  Whether we are trying to show students that we need the whole picture to make an opinion or we are trying to encourage their minds  to begin processing and making connections, images provide a quick and easy way to build a foundation for learning.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed and step-by-step instructions for utilizing the Half the Story strategy in the classroom.

There’s even valuable bonus info you can check out here. Pretty cool, eh?

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then take the digital integration challenge by trying to implement the Half the Story strategy and/or one of these additional ideas into a classroom lesson:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

» Concept Circles

» The Envelope Please

» Get Venn-y with It!

» MVP

» Partner Time

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: Partner Time

June30

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I am now featuring some of these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s spotlight—Partner Time—is a simple yet effective way to manage partnerships in your classroom. It also ensures that students are not always sharing with the same classmate.

Big Idea

When students have the opportunity to discuss and compare ideas and opinions with a wide variety of their peers, they develop a broader understanding of the world and are more flexible and creative in their problem-solving.

That said, the Partner Time concept allows teachers to establish partnerships in advance; therefore, eliminating the management and guesswork when grouping students. Doing so, leaves more time to accomplish academic goals while also providing students with the opportunity to have choice with whom they work.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed and step-by-step instructions for utilizing the Partner Time strategy in the classroom.

There’s even a video overview you can check out here. Pretty cool, eh?

And last, but certainly not least, here’s a visual to get those wheels turning…

clock partners

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then take the digital integration challenge by trying to implement the Partner Time strategy and/or one of these additional ideas into a classroom lesson:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

» Concept Circles

» The Envelope Please

» Get Venn-y with It!

» MVP

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: MVP

June16

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I am now featuring some of these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s spotlight—MVP—is an instructional strategy that reinforces the concept of identifying main idea and supporting details, a super important set of comprehension skills.

Big Idea

The purpose of this strategy is for students to analyze information to determine the MVP or Most Valuable Point within song lyrics. Dividing a song into verses enables students to analyze smaller pieces of a song and dive deeper for specific information.  By brainstorming and discussing important ideas in a small group setting, students will strengthen skills in the areas of listening, speaking, writing, and summarizing.  

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed, steps for integrating the MVP strategy into lessons, an example, a graphic organizer for use during instruction and extension activities.

There’s even a video overview you can check out here. Pretty cool, eh?

And last but certainly not least, here’s a visual to get those wheels turning…

MVP

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then take the digital integration challenge by trying to implement the MVP strategy and/or one of these additional ideas into a classroom lesson:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

» Concept Circles

» The Envelope Please

» Get Venn-y with It!

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: Get Venn-y with It

May20

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I will now be featuring these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s feature—Get Venn-y with It—is an instructional strategy that improves comprehension skills.

Big Idea

According to Robert J. Marzano, one high-yield instructional strategy is to helpstudents identify similarities and differences. And Harvey Silver states, in his book Compare and Contrast, that this strategy “strengthens students’ memories by focusing their thinking on analyzing pairs of ideas, enhances their ability to remember key content and improves comprehension by highlighting important details.” By using digital resources, educators are able to level the playing field for students who may not have had real life experiences on which to base their reasoning.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed, steps for integrating the Get Venn-y with It strategy into lessons, an example and extension activities.

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then take the digital integration challenge by trying to implement the Get Venn-y with It concept and/or one of these additional ideas into a classroom lesson:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

» Concept Circles

» The Envelope Please

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: The Envelope Please

May11

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I will now be featuring these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s feature—The Envelope Please—is an instructional strategy that strengthens comprehension skills via predicting outcomes.

Big Idea

The purpose of this strategy is to allow students to use prior knowledge to make predictions and utilize discussion and reflection to solidify their understanding. The act of making a prediction is rooted in comprehension. In order to make good, strong predictions, students must have a solid understanding of the content being studied, be able to recall information, know how to use clues to make inferences, and make connections between different sources of information.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed, steps for integrating the The Envelope Please strategy into lessons, an example and extension activities. There’s even a video overview you can check out here. Pretty cool, eh?

And last but certainly not least, here’s a visual to get those wheels turning…

the envelope please

Can’t get enough of these simple but effective instructional strategies? Click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then be sure to check out other ideas in this series:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

» Concept Circles

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: Concept Circles

May5

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I will now be featuring these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the really good stuff…

This week’s feature—Concept Circles—is an instructional strategy that strengthens vocabulary skills.

Big Idea

Concept Circles (Vacca & Vacca, 2001) are tools which help students move beyond memorization of terms and definitions by focusing them on analyzing the relationships between those words. In this strategy, students use a circle organizer to analyze how vocabulary words are or are not related through a concept or topic. There are different models for the circle: some are simply a circle divided into quarters; others, like the one used in the example below, provide space for note taking and identification of the concept.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed, steps for integrating the Concept Circles strategy into lessons, an example and extension activities. And there’s even a video overview you can check out here. Pretty cool, eh?

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then be sure to check out other ideas in this series:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

» Whittle It Down

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: Whittle It Down

April16

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Educator Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I will now be featuring these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the good stuff…

This week’s feature—Whittle It Down—is an instructional strategy that reinforces summarization skills.

Big Idea

Summarizing is an important comprehension strategy which involves more than retelling content. In order to summarize effectively, students must have a solid understanding of the presented material (reading passages, videos, audio files, etc.) in order to synthesize large chunks of information into generalizations. The Whittle It Down strategy is designed to scaffold summarization by having students work independently, then collaboratively as part of a small group, and finally as a whole class to ‘whittle down’ a list of vocabulary words that are most important to understanding the topic being studied. This final list is then used to compose a summary of the topic.

Now that I have your attention, all you have to do is click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy which includes info related to materials needed, steps for integrating the Whittle It Down strategy into lessons, an example and extension activities.

Better yet—click here to check out the entire S.O.S. series on the DEN blog!

So, there you have it: Another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then be sure to check out other ideas in this series:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

» Snowball Fight

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: Snowball Fight

April8

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Education Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I will now be featuring these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the good stuff…

This week’s feature—Snowball Fight—old instructional strategy with a digital twist, one that focuses on engaging students with video content, writing and sharing ideas with peers.

Background

Showing videos in class is a great way to engage students and bring learning to life. But, often times, watching a video becomes a passive learning experience. In order to get the most out of watching a video, it is important to engage students with a strategy that gets them to think, reflect, and share what they have learned. This week’s strategy takes a fun spin on a snowball fight, as students share what they learn with each other.

Steps

Materials:  video segment, paper, writing tool

1. Explain to students that they will be watching a video segment.

2. Have each student take out a blank piece of paper. Explain to students that while they watch the video, they need to write one fact they learned from the video.

3. Have each student crumple his or her piece of paper into a ball and, on the count of three, have everyone throw his or her “snowball” into the air.
4. Have each student pick up a snowball, open it and read the fact.

5. Students are then responsible for adding another statement to the piece of paper. It could be a supporting detail to the original statement, or it could be a new statement related to what they’ve learned.

6. Repeat several more times until students have had ample opportunity to report out significant learning from the video segment.

7. Have students share what is on their snowball with the whole group.

Sum It Up

Wrap up by asking students to share what is written on their snowballs with the whole group. This activity provides a great way to motivate students to remember key topics and concepts from material they’ve learned. It’s fun and motivating!

More Ideas

» Have students take digital photos of the snowball statements and reflect on what they’ve learned in a blog post.

» Have students write questions about the content and have other students reply back with answers.

Click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy.

So, there you have it—another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then be sure to check out other ideas in this series:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

» A-E-I-O-U

Print Friendly

Spotlight on Strategies: A-E-I-O-U

March23

spotlight on strategiesEven though there is always a mind-boggling amount of invaluable info shared on the Discovery Education Network (DEN), one of the best resources available is the Spotlight on Strategies (S.O.S) series, a must-see DEN favorite designed to provide teachers with simple yet effective instructional practices for using digital content to support student learning.

To date, there are 70+ teacher tried and tested strategies featured on the DEN blog and now thanks to Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education and all-around DEN tech guru, I will now be featuring these techniques on my space. Two thumbs up to this guy!

So, enough of that. Let’s fast forward to the good stuff…

On tap this week: A-E-I-O-U, a visual literacy strategy that focuses on teaching student how to interpret information related to classroom content as well as how to express their learning in multiple ways.

Big Idea

As students, particularly language learners, are developing their ability to interpret information, it is important that we provide multiple paths for them to express what they see, know, and wonder about content being covered.  

Steps

Materials:  video segment, paper, writing tool

1. Preview the video segment and select appropriate points at which to pause for students to jot notes.  

2. Show video segment. Important: As students watch the video, do not have them take notes. If they look down to take notes, they will be missing content. Assure them you will pause the video every few minutes for them to jot down their thoughts related to the following categories: 

For an added bonus, have students re-enact the image.

Sum It Up

Click here to snag a PDF version of this super cool strategy.

So, there you have it—another S.O.S. trick to add to your edtech toolbox. Stay tuned for additional ways to activate learning in your classroom…

Like what you see? Then be sure to check out other ideas in this series:

» Reading Between the Lines

» ABC Summary

» 6-Word Stories

» What Did They Say?

Print Friendly
« Older Entries

Hey, edu-tech gurus!

Looking for some technology integration ideas to enhance your classroom lessons? Then be sure to check out my "Tech Tips" for the latest and greatest Web 2.0 tools, applications and web sites that can be incorporated into activities and/or projects. Although some posts may not be applicable to your content area or grade level, be sure to check back often as I will be varying ideas in order to provide resources across the K-12 curriculum.

Be sure to add this awesome tool to your tech-box!

Follow Us on Facebook!

Follow Us on Scoop.it!

Where in the World?

Visit the Tech-knowledge-y Rocks Wikispace!

Interactive Learning Journeys live here!

Archives

Click on the badge to view the EdTech Magazine article.
Book Creator Ambassador badge
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


Subscribe

Follow this blog

Get every new post delivered right to your inbox.

Skip to toolbar