In our third episode, we discuss various ways of using your smartphone with ISD Tech, embracing failure (including a big fail in this episode, bonus points if you can find it) and how to create an effective web presence.
For our bell ringer, our little troupe chimed in about how they use their smartphones to improve their teaching.
For Carrie and Josh, it wasn’t so much about the apps, as it was about documenting and using it to have more flexibility with their hours after school. There was also some talk of BYOD (way to bring it back to the students Carrie!)
Tech Talk – Embracing Failure
After Josh rambled on about teachers (including himself) being control freaks, the rest of the crew jumped in and shared about what they’ve learned from their tech failures.
Carrie managed to crash and burn in front of a Tech TOSA (some people are just lucky) and Tricia threw down on Carl Sagan’s Cosmos while also comparing implementing new tech to dating (FYI – she leaves the duds at a coffee shop.)
Application Time – Using Your Web Presence
Every teacher in ISD is required to have a web presence, so Josh, Carrie and Tricia dove into what makes for a good web presence, and how having an effective web presence can support teaching and learning.
Carrie shares that she found her web site to be a great organizer, portal and record of her work. She wanted students and parents to use it, so she made this video walkthrough. She also explained how having a robust web presence creates a firewall against excuses.
Josh wanted his website to be a monster of an instructional tool with content hand crafted by him, but discovered that it was much better to focus on creating a good communication tool first, and then later build out the content taking advantage of the webs extensibility and the work of others before him. He also found his web presence was great for scaffolding lessons and helping putting content in front of students at the precise moment he wanted.
Tricia echoed everybody’s thoughts and explained that having a well built web presence freed her up for more work with students in small groups.
Everyone waxed on about the asynchronous benefits that accompany a good web presence.
Show and Tell
Jeopardy Labs – Students love turning their work into games, and
Jing – Carrie is a screen casting evangelist and uses them for everything from quick tutorials to giving feedback on student writing.
Bee Bots – A programmable robot shaped like a bumble bee that is designed to teach kids the basics of programming. The company also sells mats that can be used to provide students with engineering challenges. See Julie Hembree, Cougar Ridge librarian, using hers with students below.