Monday, September 14, 2015

Watch this video here. Now that you are seeing the power of a 3D printer, how might this technology change the future? 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Personalized learning

Yesterday, I was fortunate to attend the CASE conference at the Westin Hotel in Westminster, CO. One of the main topics that we covered was Blended Learning and how to personalize learning. I think that personalized learning is the path that we have to go in if you really want students to reach their individual potentials and education in the United Stated to be comparable with other countries. In order to do that, we need to change the way that we look at the Education system. The first thing we need to do as teachers is relinquish control over the students and take control of the learning environment. Students have to be responsible for their own learning. The problem that I see, is that we have been stuck in the same model since the Industrial Revolution. Technology has changed, learning can be accelerated, and we continue to structure our schools the same exact way. I believe that even as early as Kindergarten, that students need to be free to choose how they learn. Weather that is through a more traditional means, self paced with devices like tablets, or project based where kids work in groups and learn together to solve a problem. Let's change the way we dictate how our kids learn. Let's give them the freedom to learn for themselves and teachers act as facilitators instead of Sage's.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013


Just needed a place to put this image that I created in Photoshop. I think that anytime you can include creativity into education you should do so. Adobe has a great line of products, but in addition they have the Adobe Education Exchange which includes tons of lesson plans, tutorials, and other people dedicated to bringing back creativity in education. In honor of that, I love Fantasy Football and it we have now finished the regular season in my league "School Daze". So I created a little playoff image of all the teams in just to make it fun.
So here's to being creative! Let's go Cowboys in the NFL and I hope I win this year!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Common Core - Good or Bad?

There is a huge debate about the common core going on right now.  Is it going to dumb down our kids?  Is it a program that is meant to gather a tremendous amount of data to track our students from preschool - until college graduation?  Glenn Beck had a very interesting show on.  Looking at just the standards, they are well written and ask kids to do more now than ever before. Check out the video clip and let me know what you think. What I see in public schools are teachers that are stresses out completely. I see teachers that feel like that are not teaching and simply reading from a script. They are frustrated, they are angry, and it shows everytime I work with them. I see students who feel they should get a reward everytime they turn in their homework, or have good behavior. They feel like they should receive an A just for showing up. Our culture is killing education, not a set of standards. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

15 Year Old Has the Right Idea

Educators all over America have been saying the same thing:  "Free Me,  Allow me to be creative, allow my students to wonder, explore, and direct themselves.   Free me from the curriculum and allow me to decide what is best for kids."  A student from the suburbs of Chicago has the right idea:

Check out his article in the Washington Post:

There are still many educators who do not think that freedom of choice is the way to go.  Here's the real issue, we have many students from many different backgrounds.  Schools should have different models that will reach different kids.  Some students are extremely self-directed and will thrive in an environment where they are able to direct their own learning and engage in critical thinking and problem solving.  There are on the other hand, students who do not perform well in unstructured environments and need a traditional learning model.  Why can't there be both styles available in the same school or at the very least different schools in the same district that offer different structures? Why are we fixated on the notion that we have to have students seated in neat rows, walking in straight lines, and passively learning through direct instruction to pass a standardized test?  We do have to change and we have to change quickly. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Ipad to projector

Just learned about this nifty little tool called Airserver.  It allows you to project whatever is on your ipad to your computer screen and then obviously to your projector...all wirelessly.  This will definitely help sell ipads in my district and make it so they can use them better in the classroom. To download just click on the link.  I promise it is NOT a virus.  Pretty cool!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Lit Trips

One of the arguments that I have been faced with as an educator is whether or not to entertain students as a way of reaching them.  This is my conclusion...yes I should.  Technology has been shaping the world and how our kids respond to learning.  I don't have to go through the litany of tech tools that entertain students. In saying that, if we want to be effective teachers, then we have to be open to using technology to entertain our students as well.  One old, but very useful tech tool is Google Lit Trips.  It based on the idea of taking a book and tracing the journey of the characters using Google Earth.   There are basically two ways of delivering Google Lit Trips:  creating a GLT as teacher or having students create them.  This provides a entertaining way for students to really engage in a book and truly relate to the places that the characters have been.  How wonderful it is to be provided with such a powerful tool that can virtually take them to a place that they probably have not traveled to before.