Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Although this does not have to do with guided inquiry directly, I am posted this because I believe it has to do with digital citizenship, while addressing a national trend. A must read. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Expert tips to help teach cellphone etiquette
Some school districts have lifted or eased bans on cellphone use during the school day. This trend means educators may need to help teach cellphone etiquette, according to this article, which features tips from a university professor who wrote a cellphone-use guide for educators. U.S. News & World Report (12/15)

Monday, December 15, 2014

The long term use of technology is being debated. Here is an article looking at both sides. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Experts debate long-term effects of technology use
Technology can play a distracting role in students' educational careers, according to recent research. Experts are exploring how students' use of technology may affect brain development, while educators are looking to incorporate technology in the classroom in meaningful ways. The Atlantic online (12/10)

Monday, December 8, 2014

This is a fabulous idea and as a variety of likenesses to guided inquiry and the International Baccaulerate as well. Take a look, there are some great ideas. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

Teachers can take a cue from Google to encourage innovation
Technology firms, including Google, have found success with a strategy that allows employees to spend one-fifth of their time on "passion projects." Now, the approach appears to be catching on in education, with some teachers setting aside time for students to work on inquiry-based projects. This article includes 20 tips to help educators adopt this approach. eSchool News (free registration) (12/8)

Friday, November 21, 2014

Here is a great idea for online safety. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

Program aims to teach students about online safety
A new, free online course -- "Think Before You Link" -- will be released for students in grades three to eight to help educate them about online safety, bullying and Internet ethics. The program comes at a time when students increasingly are living their lives online, raising concern among parents and teachers about their safety. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (11/13)

Thursday, November 13, 2014

MOOCs are the current trend. Here are some possibilites. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

High-school teachers experiment with MOOCs
Some high-school teachers are finding ways to use massive open online courses in their classrooms as a supplemental source. In addition, more MOOC providers are releasing courses geared toward K-12 education. U.S. News & World Report/High School Notes blog

Friday, November 7, 2014

Here is an interesting article on the difference between digital natives and the digital immigrants. A good read. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

Why students can learn from teachers when it comes to technology
Today's students -- often referred to as "digital natives" -- are not any better at using technology than their teachers, according to a recent study of middle-school science teachers. The New York Institute of Technology study also found that teachers' age was not a factor in their technology abilities, and that while students are adept at using technology for entertainment, they need assistance with more sophisticated uses. T.H.E. Journal (10/22)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Classroom in the Cloud: Technology as a Learning Environment is a great article on how one high school re-imagined their library for use of technology and collaborative learning. This is well worthe the read. Enjoy. Courtesy of Edutopia

Media specialist reimagines the school library

09/23/2014 | Edutopia.org
Students at a New Jersey high school not only have access to a physical library that encourages collaboration, but they also have access to a virtual library. In this blog post, educator and media specialist Laura Fleming shares how she reimagined the traditional library and expanded its reach beyond school walls.
View Full Article in:

Sunday, September 28, 2014

I am posting this because the topics Pink addresses under motivation, includes three of the elements central to guided inquiry. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Motivated to learn: A conversation with Daniel Pink
In this interview with Educational Leadership, business thinker and author Daniel Pink shares his insights on how schools can create more optimal conditions for learning -- and how they can dial up students' own motivation to learn. He highlights the three elements of true motivation -- autonomy, mastery and purpose -- and shares his thoughts on traditional reward systems and more. Read on.
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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Here are some teacher based, doable use of mobile applications in the classroom. It is well worth the read. Enjoy. Courtesy f ASCD SmartBrief

Teachers reveal their favorite mobile apps
School technologists and teachers are using digital tools and mobile applications to improve teaching and collaboration. This article lists several tools, including Remind, an app that allows teachers to send mass messages, and Class Dojo, which helps teachers monitor student behavior. National Public Radio/npr Ed blog (9/16)

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Instruction is moving steadily towards guided inquiry in the states. Here is a perfect example. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

Tenn. district to use digital resources for social studies
Rather than replacing outdated textbooks, a Tennessee school district is instructing teachers to use websites, interactive videos and other resources to teach history, geography and other social studies subjects. The district still is deciding whether to purchase math textbooks. The Tennessean (Nashville) (tiered subscription model) (8/5)

Monday, August 18, 2014

This is one of the best books ever published on collaborativ learning. I have used it for professional learning for classroom teachers many times. The language is clear and direct, giving great language as well as clear guidelines and goals for collaborative learning. This book is clear, to the point, and easy to implement. The frameworks in this book truly foster collaboration - fostering growth.

ASCD Tools and Resources to Support Collaborative Learning
ASCD Supports Collaborative Learning

"Learning is social," write Douglas Fisher, Nancy Frey, and Sandi Everlove in Productive Group Work.
ASCD has compiled a comprehensive assortment of books, videos, and online courses from our vast professional development library to help you learn how to optimize teaching strategies to support collaborative learning. Browse the highlighted books below or see the complete list of resources on ASCD.org.

Productive Group Work: How to Engage Students, Build Teamwork, and Promote Understanding
By: Nancy Frey, Douglas Fisher, and Sandi Everlove

This book will show you how to make all group work productive group work: with all students engaged in the academic content and with one another, building valuable social skills, consolidating and extending their knowledge, and increasing their readiness for independent learning.
Buy Now

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Here is a great new tool for students and teachers to use in the classroom. Enjoy! Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Google's Classroom launches with promise to help teachers
Google's Classroom launched on Tuesday and aims to improve efficiency for classroom teachers and help teachers and students communicate and collaborate. This article details the ways teachers can use the cloud-based organizer and what improvements are still to come. EdTech magazine online (8/12)

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Here is a great article that addresses the using real world experiences with technology. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief

Educator suggests technology is best used as a classroom tool
Technology is best used as a learning tool in projects where students connect with and potentially affect
their communities, writes middle-grades educator Bill Ferriter. In this blog post, he criticizes the repetitive approach to learning skills emphasized by some educational games and suggests that interacting in real-world lessons is a better approach to teaching 21st-century skills such as collaboration and reflection. Center for Teaching Quality/Tempered Radical blog (7/13)

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Here are some great ideas to assure teacher and student success when beginning to implement flipped instruction. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

How to give teachers time to flip instruction

College students working in computer lab
(Hero Images/NewsCred)
Schools can give teachers the time, support and resources they need to flip instruction by rethinking professional-development time, two former educators write in this article. Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams -- considered pioneers in the flipped-class movement -- also highlight the role of teacher collaboration in flipped instruction. District Administration magazine online

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Here is a great article that talks about how to set up a classroom culture of inquiry and collaboration. These are part of the CCSS. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Classroom culture: It's your decision
"Teachers who expect and plan for collaboration and set up the lessons with enough questions to be answered or discovered are establishing a culture of discovery and inquiry," writes director of Whole Child Programs at ASCD Sean Slade. In a recent Inservice post, Slade shares how teachers can create a positive classroom culture through structures and connections. Read on.

Here are some reflections from real teachers who have attempted blended learning. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief

Educators share their experiences with blended learning

Students using computers
(© Corbis/NewsCred)
Some educators who use blended learning say the infusion of technology has helped them develop student-centered classrooms. Blended learning also has the potential to reshape professional development, educators say. Still, others note that educators need adequate training and support for a successful rollout of the model. Education Week Teacher (tiered subscription model) (6/18)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Not all schools can afford to provide technology for every child. Here is one district's approach to bring your own device. See if this can help you. Courtesy of ASCD.

How 3 districts overcame bring-your-own-device challenges
In this article, school leaders from three districts discuss challenges and lessons learned during their rollout of bring-your-own-device programs. Tim Clark, coordinator of instructional technology for a Georgia school district, said one of the biggest challenges was explaining BYOD to parents. To help overcome this challenge, the district held informational sessions, where they highlighted online safety and guidelines for in-school use of the Internet. District Administration magazine online (5/20)

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Tips for using social media to assess students' understanding - I often post articles on the use of social apps in the classroom. Here is a great one on formative assessment written by a librarian. Enjoy! cCourtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Social media can be used to gather real-time feedback on students' thoughts about academic concepts
and their mastery of lessons, Paige Alfonzo, a reference librarian, writes in this blog post. She shares examples of how teachers can use social media for formative assessments. For example, an elementary-school teacher could ask students to share the most confusing part of photosynthesis in a Tweet, she writes. Edutopia.org/Paige Alfonzo's blog (5/8)

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The study Maine teachers did on technology in the classroom, collaboration was identified as the key to the use of technology. Here is an article that confirms our findings. Enjoy! Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Collaboration is increasing among school librarians, teachers
School librarians and teachers have experienced more collaboration as school libraries become centers
for research and technology-based learning. Librarians' evolving roles include 55% of librarians saying they teach students skills needed for the Common Core State Standards, and 60% of librarians reporting they recommend and/or obtain common-core-aligned instructional and resource materials. "Their role has really evolved, based on the inclusion of technology and the focus of the curriculum and the Common Core," said Kathleen Brantley, director of EdNET Insight. eSchool News (free registration) (4/14)

Monday, April 7, 2014

Here is a great article that clearly demonstrates how 21st century skills are taught in this instructional format. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief

How project-based learning teaches 21st-century skills

Some educators at a school district in North Carolina are adopting project-based learning in their classrooms. In this commentary, teacher Meredith Licht shines a light on PBL in some of the district's schools. "PBL is an essential tool educators can use to teach the four C's of 21st century skills -- critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity," she writes.
View Full Article in:
Transylvania Times (Brevard, N.C.), The

Thursday, March 27, 2014

More schools become engaged with inquiry based learning. Enjoy! Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief

Colo. educators use inquiry-based lessons to support STEM
Teachers in Colorado who are taking part in the Colorado Champions for STEM Education Leadership Academy are learning best practices for teaching science, technology, engineering and math. Strategies focus, in part, on using inquiry-based lessons in the classroom. "It pushes me to be a better teacher and think about things in a different way, outside the box," fourth-grade teacher Katie Poulsen said. The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.) (3/23)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Here is a great article that supports the process of guided inquiry. Enjoy! Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Should schools direct some library funds to technology?

In this blog post, educator Bill Ferriter writes that, with limited funds for library resources, it might be 
better to direct money to technology rather than purchasing nonfiction content on a limited number of topics. At issue, he writes, is that libraries offer limited content and hours when students can access the information. High-tech devices and access to the Web would expand the scope of resources, which they can access at any time. Center for Teaching Quality/The Tempered Radical blog (3/13)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Looking for some new ideas about for using technology in your classroom? Here are some great ideas from education-technology leaders. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

Who are some of the top education-technology leaders to follow on Twitter?
For educators interested in the latest in educational technology, several cutting-edge leaders are posting resources, information and ideas about digital learning on Twitter, according to the author of this blog post. Suggested leaders to follow include Mark Brumley, an education-technology leader committed to 21st-century learners and their teachers, plus Shelly Terrell and other founders of #Edchat. Edudemic (2/27)

Saturday, February 22, 2014

This article looks at the elements of inquiry from the perspective of student-centerd practices. Enjoy! Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Study shows benefits of deeper learning, student-centered instruction
A recent study finds that deeper learning and student-centered practices were shown to improve academic achievement among low-income minority students in four schools. Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education studied the schools, which used Linked Learning Alliance or Envision Schools models, and found that all are committed to personalized learning, strive for positive teacher-student relationships and are based on reflection and revision. Edutopia.org/Bob Lenz's blog (2/13)

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Creating a foundation for collaboration? Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief

Va. elementary school improves climate with responsive learning
An elementary school in Virginia has seen its discipline referrals cut in half after implementing a schoolwide responsive learning model, officials said. As part of the model, teachers spend 20 minutes at the beginning of class letting students talk about what is happening in their lives and then do academic-related ice-breaker activities, so students get to know each other. "It's more of a family atmosphere," fourth-grade teacher Tosha Weddle said. "We really teach the students to look at it as we're all in this together, like a community." The News & Advance (Lynchburg, Va.) (2/10)

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

At last, someone is looking at the importance of credibility online. Take a look. Courtesy of ASCD Smart Brief.

How to teach students to assess the credibility of digital news
Teaching students to think critically about information and sources found on the Internet is becoming an increasingly important 21st-century skill, writes Peter Adams, senior vice president of educational programs for The News Literacy Project. In this blog post, Adams offers three exercises educators can use to help students develop this skill, such as having them analyze the news and checking facts. "News literacy education has the potential to engage students and ignite their critical thinking," he writes. Edutopia.org/Peter Adams's blog (1/31)

Monday, January 27, 2014

Collaboration is often seen as working in heterogenous groups. This article looks at the power of collaboration - as the CCSS defines it...in the real world. Interesting reading. Courtesy of ASCD.

Using collaboration and communication to curb negativity in schools
School leaders must keep communication lines open and foster collaboration to curb complaints and negativity among teachers and staff, New York City teacher and author Starr Sackstein writes in this blog post. Among other things, she recommends that leaders remain open to hearing and acting on staff concerns and form committees or lunch groups for teachers to share best practices. "Rather than tell teachers how to teach, offer them options of what is working and let them choose what is most comfortable for them," Sackstein writes. Education Week/Finding Common Ground blog

Saturday, January 18, 2014

We have been looking at guided inquiry for several years. Following is an article on a trend in the U.S. Intrnational Baccalaureate programs are built around units of inquiry. Enjoy. Courtsy of ASCD Smart Brief.

Pa. district may revise curriculum to add IB courses
A school district near Pittsburgh is looking to enhance its curriculum in math, social studies, art and music and add new International Baccalaureate courses. Incoming juniors would be able to take two-year courses in high-level math, business management, philosophy and information technology. The district also is considering purchasing textbooks that incorporate online technology for math and social studies. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (1/16)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Online Research from Choice Literacy! Enjoy!

Here are three features from the Choice Literacy archives to read when you're considering online research with students.
Bill Bass has advice for Helping Students Evaluate Online Video for Research at the high school level:
Heather Rader explores The "Tys" of Student Research: Safety and Credibility for working with children in the primary grades:
Chris Lehman shares a lot of good advice on student research in this podcast:
We have two online courses that begin this month -- Literacy Coach Jumpstart with Jennifer Allen and The Tech-Savvy Literacy Teacher with Franki Sibberson. These short courses include three webcasts, personal responses from the instructor, a DVD, and print resources. Click on the link for more information:

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Here is a great book to help teachrs make wise decisions about digital learning in the classroom. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

ASCD Arias Publications
Member ID: 1636490

New digital tools can radically improve classroom instruction

Better ways to employ technology for the benefit of learning!

What are the best ways to incorporate new apps and online resources into the classroom? Our handy new ASCD Arias publication answers that question. Find out how your students can use new online tools and apps to
  • Conduct more robust research and analysis.
  • Solicit, provide, and discuss feedback on assignments.
  • Collaborate with classmates and students from around the world.
BUY NOW to find out how new digital tools can help students learn more!


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