As a district we are always striving to move ahead, to create innovative learning experiences and expose our students to the exciting world beyond our classroom doors. To this end, the district's Vision 2015 Plan has a goal to, "Provide opportunities for students to connect with other countries and expand their cultural awareness." Becoming a connected educator and knowing how to create a global classroom literally opens up a world of opportunities for you and your students.
These workshops will be presented in a "blended" learning format. You'll have access to a variety of resources (iBooks, videos, websites etc.) before each workshop, allowing us to make our face-to-face time practical, productive, and responsive to your needs.
Gonna Get Yourself Connected!
- How to Engage, Inspire, and Learn with Twitter - a roadmap to harnessing the potential of Twitter as a teaching and learning tool.
- Getting Started with Skype in the Classroom - Teachers sign up and connect with classrooms and experts from around the world. Co-teach, plan virtual field trips, and collaborate with other students all in real-time.
Tools to Help Your Students Connect and Collaborate
The purpose of these 30 minute workshops will be to highlight the major concepts and features behind each of these powerful tools. Additional workshops can be planned for individuals or groups who would like to learn how to use them and how to integrate them with their curriculum.
- KidBlog - student friendly blogging platform that is designed by teachers. Many of our district classroom teachers already use this as a way to introduce their students to blogging and as an authentic way to grow responsible digital citizens. Allow your students to become creators - not just consumers - of information! Teachers are able to monitor and control all activity within their classroom blogging community.
- Edmodo - a virtual classroom. Allows teachers to connect and collaborate in a student friendly and safe environment. Allows teachers to share resources with students, post discussions, create assignments and quizzes, and manage small group differentiation. Also allows parents to connect and provides them with a window into the virtual classroom. Another authentic way for students to learn how to be responsible net citizens.
- VoiceThread - a great Web-based digital storytelling program that enables users to upload pictures or documents, record accompanying audio (or video) commentary, and invite others to record commentary as well. With VoiceThread teachers and students can create virtual tours, report on books they've read, comment on historically significant photographs, debate a topic, and more.
- Padlet - gives you a blank wall. You put anything you want on it, anywhere. Simple, yet powerful. Padlet is an Internet application that allows people to express their thoughts on a common topic easily. It works like an online sheet of paper where people can put any content (e.g. images, videos, documents, text) anywhere on the page, together with anyone, from any device.
- Today's Meet - the simplest of online discussion forums. Students can post and answer questions to each other throughout the school year in real-time or whenever they have a free moment outside of class. Chats can be cleared at any time by the instructor, and transcripts can be downloaded for future reference.
- Using Drive and Google Docs with Students - you've made great connections with classes around the world, but how can you effectively create with those classes when they're hundreds of miles away and in different time zones? Google Docs and Drive are powerful tools that make it easy to create with other classes, no matter how far away they live.