Friday, September 6, 2013

My #edtech palette to start the year

I think I finally got a handle on how I intend to begin this year in terms of my core educational technology.

Weebly
I am quickly falling love with how much power this free website creator has. I was drawn to the site because of the blog page capability and the RSS feed - I still need to play with how I can "hack" (i.e. customize) my way through things. Favorite inspirational moment: placing 5 RSS feeds of world newspapers side by side for an at-a-glance look at world headlines.

Common Curriculum
For lesson planning. They made some major upgrades to their software offerings. My two faves: linking individual lessons to unit plans, and the ability to insert a file from Google Drive. Put that together with the ability to display your plans as a webpage (and link it to Weebly), and you have a powerful moment of transparency and accessibility to your teaching.

Google Apps
We are a GAFE district, and I am enjoying my life in the cloud. The ability to share breaks down so many borders; I am no longer the broker of information... now I can share in the learning with the kids. New ideas for this year: use a student info form to collect student info (obvious), and to make student folders for eventual online submission, and add them to a class contact list (to make it all the more easier to share more things with them).

Socrative
My new find for the summer: I no longer feel the need to try to code this functionality - the folks over at Socrative have done it. I plan to use this for all my objective w quizzes this year. It allows students to answer with their devices (we are a BYOT district), gives them instant feedback, and can generate a score report that gets emailed to you. Solid.

I think that's my base for the year. And I'm pretty damn excited about it. Yeah!