September 2011 Blog Posts (55)

IPADS in the classroom


I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions or strategies when it comes to using ipads in the classroom.  I have 8 students and 3 ipads and currently just use them as time fillers.  What are some great educational uses for them if you aren't able to have them 1:1 with students?  Thanks!



Added by Shauna Donohoe on September 8, 2011 at 12:13pm — No Comments

Beyond Compliance: Teaching Students to Make Responsible Decisions

I have been going home exhausted. Yes, I'm getting used to early mornings. But I think the most draining aspect of a new school year is fielding the hundreds of questions fired at me. I'm sure you've heard them:

  • "Can I call home/go to the restroom/return my book/fill my water bottle...?"
  • "Do I...?"
  • "What do...?"
  • "Where does this go?"

Procedural questions can be handled by…


Added by Janet Abercrombie on September 8, 2011 at 8:19am — No Comments

What's all the buzz about?

The buzz around here is that BuzzMath is offering a FREE full-access membership for one teacher and 30 of their students in every school for an entire school year.  BuzzMath is the latest interactive mathematics workbook for middle school students.  This website offers 2,700+ online math problems with instant feedback and detailed solutions. It is amazing to watch students manipulate protractors, create triangles on a grid,…


Added by Jamie Piecora on September 7, 2011 at 8:25am — No Comments

Blog postings vs. Parent-Teacher Conference

What if instead of taking up a whole day of class to have parent-teacher conferences, we just use a blog site to let parents know how their child is doing? 

Added by Elizabeth Wilson on September 6, 2011 at 3:08pm — 1 Comment

Technology introduced too soon harming writing skills?

Today, computers and other forms of technology are introduced at a very young age. There are many toddlers that seem to know how to work a cell phone or computer. Is introducing this technology so soon in children's lives harming their writing skills? Will using keyboards to type out information make it difficult for students to learn necessary writing skills for their future?

Added by Stephanie M. Robertson on September 6, 2011 at 2:38pm — 1 Comment

New Terminology: Scoring v. Grading

This post was originally posted on Assessment FOR Learning.

After studying Assessment FOR Learning pretty intensely for the past few school years, I am now beginning to think that we might do ourselves a favor if we would change some of our terminology.  Specifically, I think it's time to stop using the words "grading" or "grade" as often as we do and replace them - at times - with "scoring" or "score".




Added by Scott Habeeb on September 6, 2011 at 2:01pm — No Comments

Using Technology to teach ESL

How can you effectively use technology to teach English to foreign speakers in low economic societies? That is, how is technology useful when teaching English in a society that does not use technology like we do here in the U.S.?

Added by Rebekah Wagner on September 6, 2011 at 10:47am — No Comments

Netbooks are Here!

My students received their netbooks on Friday, so this week begins a new adventure in learning for us! The kids will be adjusting to a different style of instruction as most everything I do in the classroom is supported by technology through my wikispace. In a blog last year I wrote about the purpose my wikispace would serve.

 Here is an…


Added by Melissa Johnston on September 6, 2011 at 9:00am — 2 Comments

10 Internet Technologies Educators Should Be Informed About – 2011 Update

These Technologies Are Changing Education. Are You Familiar With Them?


It’s been nearly two and half years since the publication of the first “10 internet technologies that educators should be informed about” article on this site and given the fast paced evolution…


Added by Kelly Walsh on September 6, 2011 at 6:00am — No Comments

Bookcasts: Podcasts that Demonstrate Reading Comprehension

Podcast Bear
Photo accessed through Creative Commons, attributed to

When you talk to a 10-year-old about a book, the child will most often give you a rundown that includes a string of "And then...and then...and then..." How can…

Added by Janet Abercrombie on September 6, 2011 at 4:29am — 1 Comment


Every state has required standards that every teacher has to meet. Are all of these required standards hindering the creativity of teachers?

Added by Stephanie M. Robertson on September 5, 2011 at 1:02pm — No Comments

Visual Literacy: Teaching Students How Video Can Fool the Viewer

One of the most important things we can teach students is to be a critical viewer of visual media. Can we believe everything we see?

My teaching partner and I created a 17-second iMovie:

We then gave students access to the 18 smaller clips from which the movie was…


Added by Janet Abercrombie on September 5, 2011 at 3:00am — 1 Comment

People Power: Building Classroom Community

  People Power

Building Community

Without community, a classroom is just a room. Without community, a class is just a crowd.


A community of learners starts with discovering…


Added by Sheri on September 3, 2011 at 10:19am — No Comments

Transitions: Classroom Routines That Respect Instructional Time

I have pretty high expectations for student organization and transitions between activities. I don't want student to lose precious learning time. That said, I don't want students to be robots.

How do I show students I care about them, honor individual quirks, and still clarify my expectations for our learning time?

Clear instructions are written on the board as students arrive - and for each transition. In the past, I wrote steps for students on…


Added by Janet Abercrombie on September 3, 2011 at 6:00am — 2 Comments

Beginning-of-year Activities

I consciously overplan the first few days. The worst possible first-day scenario is to arrive unprepared. Over the years, I've collected a number of first-day activity ideas - far too many to use.

I've pared down the activities based on the following considerations:

  • My first goal is to build classroom community, making all students feel comfortable and successful.
  • My second goal is to establish routine.
  • My third goal is to formatively assess students'…

Added by Janet Abercrombie on September 2, 2011 at 5:20am — 2 Comments

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