Hatching Chicks

  Two of the schools that EdTech EASE works with include hatching chicks as part of their elementary science curriculum. This made me curious as to why this process was included in their curriculums. For both schools, this is part of a larger science curriculum. As part of their science curriculum, the first and second graders in these schools...
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Learning Spaces

Learning should not be regulated to just the classroom. I am not the only one who feels this way, just check Instagram and Facebook posts.Learning spills out into the hallways and beyond in many schools. In the schools I visit, I often observe that the hallways, multipurpose room, and even the kitchen are often transformed into learning spaces. Usi...
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Science Fair in a Digital World?

During the last few weeks I have been an observer in the process of a school science fair. When I first heard about this endeavor, I started thinking about, is there a place in this digital world for an old school science fair? Let's start with what I observed of this process. Students did preliminary research regarding their science concept, follo...
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Academically or Developmentally Ready?

Had a conversation with a parent last week. She was telling me how she and her husband had just watched Apollo 13 with their 5th grade daughter over the weekend. After reassuring their daughter that the astronauts were going to be fine, they all got really engrossed with the film. The 5th grader asked some great questions that they stopped the movi...
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How to improve...Practice!

Want to get better at something? Then practice it! Been feeling a bit frustrated that some educators and parents seem to think that students will improve in reading just because we are assessing their reading skills. No. Some think that students will improve their individual reading skills because they are reading short passages in an anthology onc...
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Loving Legos Again

So let's be honest, I have always loved Legos! When I say that I am loving Legos again, it is because I have started writing some new Lego Challenges for the schools that I am working with. I am also curating some fun new ones from Pinterest. I will share some of my new ones when I finish creating this batch. No sense in not sharing and using socia...
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What is your Objective?

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Several years ago, I was conferencing with a teacher. She said that she did not have enough time to do all the activities she had for her unit. In fact she had a wonderful new activity she wanted to add to to the unit plan. I stopped her and asked, "What is your Objective?" She then told me what the objective was for that unit and I asked if all th...
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Intentional Add-On

Intentional Add-On
  I have been working on a workshop presentation, Digital Citizenship, How Am I Supposed To Teach This? As I work through the segment as to why you should teach Digital Citizenship, I have found myself saying that teaching Digital Citizenship should not be done as add-on lessons but rather integrated into the curriculum. In fact it should and ...
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Celebrate the Good

The world seems so much smaller these days because of social media and the ability to contact people anytime anywhere. But walking in schools, I still get the feeling sometimes that classrooms are each in their own silo. Reaching out within a school does not often seem to happen as much as reaching out on Twitter or Facebook. Maybe it is because we...
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Percolating Time

So, when I decided to write a blog, I envisioned myself sitting down at my kitchen table and spending an hour here, an afternoon there, writing. Well, I was wrong. Well mostly wrong. Often I start a blog that way. Maybe a paragraph or just a sentence. But I have learned from writing letters to parents or articles for school newsletters, that I need...
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This week is July 4th week. Freedom is the idea running around in mind this week. What is freedom? So I posted the following on Twitter:  Been writing a new blog post & July 4th has been on my mind. So I started to write a list of what FREEDOM is then I realized, I would like to ask others what FREEDOM is. So I am asking… some of the answe...
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Let the Creativity Flow

These days as a consultant, my students are the teachers and administrators in my client schools. So when I have the opportunity to meet with students and model some of the ideas that I am discussing with the faculty, I jump at the chance. This occurred recently on a consultation in North Carolina. I was demonstrating the ease of use of a fun littl...
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  As schools are ending or have ended, that brings graduations and moving up ceremonies. With this in mind, I am sharing a modified version of the 5th grade graduation talk I gave last year. I am a country music person. Several months ago I was walking, listening to my walking playlist and the song Voices by Chris Young came on.Now normally he...
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Happy Endings?

  Over Mother's Day weekend, I went to see Avengers -Infinity War. For many Mother's Days, my family takes me to see the new superhero movie. I like superhero movies, to the joy of my three sons. So even though my youngest son was home from college and had seen the movie, and my older two were not home, I asked my husband to take me. As we lef...
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Other Teachers’ Classroom

  The fascination of walking into another teacher's classroom. We have all felt it. The "Ooh, did not think to set up my bookshelves like that." Or the "That works well for a learning center." Now, I am not talking about Pinterest classroom jealousy, rather the ideas that pop up when you enter another teacher's room and wonder if yours could w...
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Accountability - What does it mean to be accountable?

Accountability. A word that is thrown around schools, discussed with parents, and expected of students. But what is it? The New Oxford American Dictionary on my computer defines accountability as: the fact or condition of being accountable; responsibility. So when we say students need to be accountable, we are saying we want students to be responsi...
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Parent Engagement

A blog post I wrote in the fall was about creating a classroom community with your students. Creating a safe place for respectful discussion to occur, for students to take risks their with education, not "play it safe" for the grades. But what about the others who have also been part of your classroom this year? What about your students' parents? A...
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My mind is currently a mess! Ideas for this blog start to percolate and then fizzle out. I have a list of ideas but none seem to develop into a full blog. So, today you are reading my list. Maybe jotting down these thoughts will help the ideas to grow and become clear expressions. Positivity - how to reframe thoughts into positive actions What back...
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Teachers use Design Thinking all the time!

As educators we are encouraged to teach our students to be problem solvers. We read about students as makers and creators. We can search the internet for Design Thinking Process graphics to guide our students. John Spencer and A.J. Juliani wrote a great book, LAUNCH , to mentor us into using Design Thinking in our classrooms. If you have not introd...
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Not Just One Week

 I started this blog post back in the fall when social media was touting Digital Citizenship Week and Hour of Code. But I decided not to finish this thought. Well, last week we had #DigitalLearningDay and I found myself thinking about this idea again. It just so happened that on #DigitalLearningDay I was part of a team that had a fundraiser fo...
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