Category: Trends

#makeschooldifferent

When it comes to education, we have to stop pretending that…

  1. There is a magic bullet.
  2. Chasing your tail is better than sitting still.
  3. Today’s fad is better than yesterday’s fad.
  4. Symbolism is a substitute for substance.
  5. Merry-go-rounds make great transports.

 

I think that I will dip my toe into the rapidly rising current of Scott McLeod’s #makeschooldifferent challenge. And as I dip my toe, I think I will grab a raft to navigate the waves of the rising current.

I will also continue to add to my Evernote “Stop Pretending” page. I will expand the list of things that stimulate my thinking and challenge my paradigm. I will take my initial five as topics to later expand upon. Yet more importantly is the challenge to actually stop pretending and influence others to do so also.

Goldilocks & The Three Twitters

In the never ending search for things that are just the right size, there is the freedom to use various Twitter Clients interchangeably. For those Papa Bear moments there is always TweetDeck or HootSuite.  The standard Twitter interface on a desktop or laptop is always just right for those Momma Bear needs. And Baby Bear needs on a non mobile device are best served by using Twitter Mobile on a desktop or laptop. You can even search your favorite app extension store for browser add on’s that meet your custom needs.

TweetDeck or HootSuite will allow you to customize to your hearts delight and flood your screen with a flurry of activity that resembles the movie theater pop corn popper in full action. Plain ole Twitter will sometimes be just right with not too much and not too little. And then there is TwitterMobile on a non mobile unit. Just like on your phone or tablet, but right on your desktop.

My favorite, glad you asked. It depends on what the need of the moment is. I am always in the search for just the right thing at just the right time.

tdeck

Doodle the Google

Never underestimate the value of the Google Doodle and never assume that everyone knows about it.

The 155th Anniversary of the Pony Express sets the stage for an Interactive Google Doodle. It also provides the opportunity for kids to play the app and ask questions. Questions like “Why are those guys on horses”? Questions that have me responding, “I am glad you asked”.

A Google Doodle is a special, temporary alteration of the logo on Google’s homepage that is intended to celebrate holidays, events, achievements and people.

Food For Thought. Have your students explore a Google Doodle and then write a six sentence paragraph, or a six slide presentation, or an info-graphic, or any other digital composition about the Doodle of the day topic.

More Food For Thought – Tell another teacher about it and they will think you are a genius.

     Pony Express

 

For More Than Just Labs

Lab Scheduler is a unique resource scheduler designed for schools, that uses periods or blocks to schedule rather than times.

Lab Scheduler is a great Google Chrome Add On to set up Lab Schedules and you can use it to set up any row and column event that requires dates and class periods. So give it a try and see if it may or may not be of any benefit to you.

And as always, “Try it, keep it or toss it, and keep moving forward”.

I Wonder Where That Originally Came From

I wonder how much of the content that we encounter is from the original author as compared to how much is redistributed through the Social Media Pipeline. I also wonder how much content I actually create as compared to how much content I simply redistribute.

For example, how many of the posts or tweets that you and I post or tweet actually originated with our creativity. How many of the posts or tweets that you and I post and tweet are simply a redistribution of someone else’s content.

A braid of three strands now occupies my thinking on the social media pipeline. Created, Redistributed, and Curated.

  • By created, I mean the original author, the person who creates the content.
  • By redistributed, I mean the passing along of someone else’s content.
  • By curate, I mean the process of the creator passing along their stuff through various media.

Follow the Flow

  1. An author creates an original article (create original content)
  2. The author publishes the article through their blog (distribute)
  3. The author directs others to their article through social media (curate)
  4. Consumers read the article and redistribute the article through their social media pipelines (redistribute)

I have been and continue to make the personal transition to discovering more original content rather than exclusively being limited to what is redistributed. And I am in the process of developing the habit of creating more original content. I guess that I could say that I am transitioning to more to a creator rather being limited to a re-distributor.

Techno Sabbatic

A Techno Sabbatic is where you pay yourself to take a technology break. Nothing, Nada, Zip, Zilch… get rid of screen time. With the past few weeks of more screen time than I could ever possibly handle from multiple devices for what seemed like 24/7, I took a break. Just a mini break. 12 hours.

With the start of school and trying to be all things to all people and solve more problems than you can imagine, I declared enough. No more, I am outta here. Well for 12 hours anyway. A mini sabbatic, vacation, me time, no time. At 4:30 PM on Saturday night I shut down all digital devices and disappeared.

It is worth it to take a Techno Sabbatic? Yes it is. You will come back refreshed and glad you tried it.

 

Powerful Words

Two Words, One Phrase, with powerful results. Nothing stirs the heart like someone acknowledging your effort. No matter how small the gift, insignificant the act or unimportant the gesture might be, when gratitude is expressed to the giver, they know they are appreciated. Make a habit of using “Power Words” on your campus. You will be amazed at the results.