Useful links

5 Popular Tools That You Might Not Realize Work on Android Tablets | Android 4 Schools Richard Byrne has written a very helpful post about tools that would be useful for teachers. “Five of my most frequently recommended tools that will work on Android tablets as well as on Chromebooks, iPads, and in your laptop’s web browser.”

21 Top Presentation Tools for Teachers – More Than A Tech “An annotated list of 21 of the best presentation apps for educators.” There is also a chart “What Works on What Device” that makes some helpful comparisons.

The tech divide: An opportunity gap schools must close | The Edvocate “Computer programming is growing at twice the average rate of national job growth according to By 2020 there could be nearly a million more IT jobs than U.S. college graduates available to fill them, representing a $500 billion economic opportunity waiting to be realized.

Growing up with access to technology, and the opportunity to learn key IT skills such as coding and app development, gives students a huge economic advantage over their peers.”

How Minecraft could help teach chemistry’s building blocks of life “Minecraft is much more than just a game. Used carefully it can also be a powerful educational tool. It allows young people to create and explore places that are completely inaccessible by other means. Within the blocky world, they can roam around historical sites, delve into the geology beneath their feet or fly through the chambers of a heart, and much more besides.

The rich resources of these virtual worlds, coupled with the educational version of the game, allow teachers to immerse young people in a comfortable but exciting learning environment. “

10 online tools for better student research | The Edvocate “The biggest responsibility of any teacher is to equip students with the tools that they can use in everyday life.

The content is important, but with information so easily accessible, it is ultimately more helpful to them if they have critical thinking, analytic ability, and research skills. You can best serve your students by engaging them in active debate, fun and absorbing problem-solving activities, and relevant research assignments.
High-school students are among the hardest to engage, so you have to approach them in a way they understand. Traditional is out, online is in. Giving them the opportunity to use the tools they are most comfortable with can help them in ways that no amount of lecturing can accomplish.
You can make your students better researchers, and thinkers, with the 10 online tools listed in this post”
Makerspaces on Pinterest | Education, Learning and Librarians Makerspace pinterest board with great resources

A Principal’s Reflections: Free Resources to Support Your Makerspace “makerspaces are being instituted to allow students to tinker, invent, create, and make to learn.  A makerspace can best be defined as a physical place where students can create real-world products/projects using real-world tools in a shared work space. With natural connections and applications to STEAM areas as well as a focus on self-directed, inquiry-based, and hands on learning, it is difficult not to appreciate and admire the positive impact that makerspaces can have on all students.  In times when many schools and districts have cut programs such as wood/metal shop and agriculture, makerspaces provide a 21st Century alternative to meet the learning needs of our most at-risk students. ” There are links to many resources that are available. There arelow cost and free resources.

“There are many ways to build student engagement in the classroom. What we need to get away from is the adult in the classroom answering their own questions, and fostering an atmosphere where students can rely on each other and work in collaboration. As with anything, this requires balance because we want to make sure the student who doesn’t want to answer questions actually takes the opportunity to do so.
As Hattie says learning is hard work and it offers us challenges. We know that as adults but want to prevent our students from seeing the challenge because it doesn’t always feel good. We need to change our expectations to make sure that students understand they do have to take ownership over their own learning, and not giving them the answers sometimes may be the place to start. “
Mindfulness at School Outside the Classroom | Edutopia “In this post are some popular and effective ways for introducing mindfulness outside of a traditional classroom setting. These settings can complement classroom teaching or be powerful stand-alone activities.”
BreakAppz — Top 5 Literacy Lesson Starters  “These activities and games require minimal resources and are extremely fun and easy to play. The games can be used at the start, middle or end of a lesson. The students will often learn more and be more engaged due to the fun and competitive nature of these literacy activities.”
5 Ways OneNote Helps Make Digital Lesson-Planning Easy | Gaggle Speaks Blog | Tracy Duncan “Whilst the note-taking functionality in OneNote is often discussed by teachers, it is also useful for creating digital lesson plans.”
Explain Everything & Book Creator part 3 “Part 3 of a 4-part series looking at how the popular educational apps Book Creator and Explain Everything can be used together. Other parts include: Part 1: Exporting a PDF from Book Creator to annotate in Explain Everything. Part 2: From Explain Everything to Book Creator to iTunes  Part 4: Hand-drawn animations in Explain Everything – published with Book Creator”

Five reasons to teach robotics in schools  Technology is critical for innovation, yet schools struggle to get students interested in this area. Could teaching robotics change this?

The Queensland government has just announced plans to make teaching robotics compulsory in its new curriculum – aimed at students from prep through to year 10.
ALIA Report: Comparison of Ebooks and Elending in Australian Public Libraries | ebooks in libraries advocacy “ALIA 2014 report – Comparision of Ebooks and Elending in Australian Public Libraries 2013 v 2014. Approximately one third of the 1500 public libraries in Western Australia responded to the survey.”
P-Day 2015 | Blogush Interesting ideas. P-Day = Passion Day. Kids research and follow through on a passion that they have.

Social Media in Schools Good disciussion of the topic. “In the past the school buildings were the hub of the community where everyone came to see and share what their children were doing. Today many families have someone working 24/7, some parents are out of town and other may do shift work starting at 4 pm. The makeup of families is changing as well and some kids have two families and homes they belong to. Communication can be a challenge.

A new stage emerges which is Social Media. Parents no longer pack parking lots, but they pack Facebook. They tweet. They share pics on Instagram. They look at them. Parents congregate and share online to see what is happening. The research shows that parent involvement can make as much of a difference as 3/4 to a full grade point of a child’s GPA. That’s a letter grade. We need to involve parents and we need a new stage. Social media gives us a large stage where people from around the world can mix, mingle, and find their clique.”

New study reveals large gaps in opportunity in Australia’s education system | Mitchell Institute “A major national data study, released 26/10/2015), shows large opportunity gaps in Australia’s education system with around 1 in 4 young people missing out at key educational milestones. While some catch up at the next milestone, up to ten per cent of all Australian students miss out on every milestone – from school entry right through to young adulthood.

This is the stark reality presented in Educational Opportunity in Australia 2015 which uses national data to reveal how well Australia’s education system is serving young people at four key milestones: school entry, Year 7, school completion measured at age 19, and early adulthood measured at age 24.”
As abuse culture escalates, what ethical framework governs the digital age? – The Minefield – ABC Radio National (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) “The spotlight has been turned on the technology industry as stories of toxic work environments emerge and user frustration with online abuse builds. The Minefield (Waleed Aly, Scott Stephens, Alister Cameron) considers whether this is an inevitable part of digital disruption—and whether we should opt out altogether.”
Versus / and / or: The relationship between information literacy and digital literacy | ACRLog A good discussion trying to understand the different but related terms and what they mean to education
Evaluate Information – How to Research – LibGuides at Red Deer College “This guide focuses on how to evaluate your sources, especially web sites.”

Useful links

Inspirational Quote by rhondda.p, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  rhondda.p 
 Moving Students From Digital Citizenship To Digital Leadership “The idea behind the shift? A kind of empathy–moving beyond see one’s self, and moving towards seeing one’s self in the physical and digital company of others. As digital technology and social media become more deeply embedded in our lives, and more nuanced in their function, this is a shift whose time has come.”
Starting a makerspace with (virtually) no budget | AHS Makerspace A lot of great links o all things Makerspace
10 Amazing Things You Didn’t Know Google Could Do – An interesting list of some leeser known aspects of Google
Teach Writing Skills: Powerful Prompts for Student Writing“You can teach writing skills with powerful multimedia based prompts and ideas, a global audience, and easy to use tools. John Spencer has the data to show that kids write more using this method.”
Using Games for Learning: Practical Steps to Get Started | The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning | MindShift | KQED News Game-based learing is becoming more normalised in schools. Games can be a useful tool for teachers for teachers to use in a variety of ways. “Games provide a different approach to developing metacognitive skills through persistent self-reflection and iteration of particular skill sets. Games offer experiential contextualized learning through virtual simulation. Games can also offer an especially engaging interdisciplinary learning space.”
Scenarios – DigitalCitizenship A great range of scenarios to use with students
Oversharing – Digital Citizenship – YouTube A short video that address the issue of your onine persona “Published on 7 Aug 2014. Think before you post! This unit teaches students about digital citizenship. We offer the top ten to think about before you post to social media platforms. See the full lyrics and lesson plan at”
Flocab’s Best of 2015 – YouTube A short video that address the issue of your online persona “Published on 7 Aug 2014. Think before you post! This unit teaches students about digital citizenship. We offer the top ten to think about before you post to social media platforms. See the full lyrics and lesson plan at”
Teachers’ Resources The National Archives Lesson Plans section contains incorporates U.S. primary documents and its excellent teaching activities correlate to the National History Standards and National Standards for Civics and Government. Lessons are organized by chronological era, from 1754 to the present
Activities | DocsTeach National Archives US Great archival site offering access to primary documents and its excellent teaching activities correlate to the National History Standards and National Standards for Civics and Government.
Education – The National Archives Offers access to a large array of resources in a variety of formats
22 Things About Computer Security Everyone Needs to Know From Vicki Davis – “a quick video with the 22 most common mistakes I’ve seen since beginning my work with computers in 1993. This is a beginning video that I also share with my students and their parents.”
5 Games That Teach You How to Code “These Web games are a fun and engaging introduction to the world of programming.”
10 Ways to Win with Windows 10 in the Classroom – Microsoft in Education Blog – Site Home – TechNet Blogs “Some simple tips and tricks on how the new features in Windows 10 save time for teachers and make learning more fun for students. There are links to more extensive training on using Windows 10 in the classroom in the Quick Tip videos”
Ignore the headlines – computers in classrooms are a good idea, and here’s why | Nesta Good discussion piece. ““Many other potential benefits fall outside of what PISA can measure through the performance of 15 year old students. The fact that this report does not document them does not imply that they do not exist.””
Are School Internet Filters the Forgotten Equity Battleground? | MindShift | KQED News Based on US situation but still applicable to Australian situation. “Despite the increasing emphasis on technology as a learning tool in the classroom, many school districts still aggressively filter the Internet that teachers and students can access. While the federal Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires that schools filter for pornographic images, many districts are over-filtering, blocking sites that can be used positively for education. There are a lot of myths about how tight these required filters must be.”
Education World: Printables, Templates and Worksheets for Teachers Education World’s page shares some other sources for templates. It has a large collection of free templates for forms, documents, letters, and classroom visual aids on their Tools & Templates page. Most are available as word processing documents. You can modify and individualize those before saving or printing them. Some templates (mostly created in PDF format) are designed to be printed and used “as is.” You can make modifications, such as adding a specific name or date, after printing the product.
The Secret to Finding the Best Games for Education – K-12 Tech Decisions “How do these teachers find and then evaluate the games that they use?  The most common way of learning about any educational tools is from peers. While face to face networks are limited by the number of interactions with people in one’s grade, school, or conferences, online professional learning networks have become invaluable.”

For the Hesitant Teacher: Leveraging the Power of Minecraft | MindShift | KQED News “Getting started with MinecraftEDU can be intimidating for teachers who don’t consider themselves “gamers” and aren’t sure how to harness the engagement and excitement of Minecraft. Luckily, there’s a robust and global Minecraft teacher community to supply tips, support and even lesson plans.

Teachers who already use Minecraft in the classroom love it because of the flexibility it offers – almost any subject can be taught with a little creativity. And like other powerful learning games, well-structured Minecraft lessons give students opportunities to fail and try again, improve their skills, and participate in an immersive environment that aids retention because students can attach the academic concepts to their personal experiences within the game.”
Inquiry-Based Learning: Developing Student-Driven Questions | Edutopia “Putting Students In Charge of Their Learning. Through inquiry, Wildwood works to ignite passion, inspire relevance, and develop ownership in their students. Using student inquiries and questions as guidance, teachers develop lessons that engage and excite, teaching their students to be active thinkers rather than passive learners.”
Social Media in Education: Resource Toolkit | Edutopia “This collection of blogs, articles, and videos aims to help educators deploy social-media tools to develop professionally, connect with parents and communities, and engage students in 21st-century learning. By Ashley Cronin, Edutopia. originally published Feb 12, 2013. Updated: Feb 19, 2015”
iPad Classroom Visit Look-Fors | Edutopia Good points about how to gauge classroom usage of technologies. Ideas transferable to notebooks in general.
Relief Teaching IdeasJigsaw Pairs – Relief Teaching Ideas “There are so many things you could do with these! Here’s a few ideas: – lower case/upper case letter matching. – sight words – antonyms – synonyms – math sums – shape names & pictures – analogue/digital time – subject area questions & answers. Blank sheets can be handed out to older kids to make up their own revision questions before a test. After writing the questions & answers on the pairs they cut them out, put the pieces into an envelope & swapped with another student to complete.”
Situating Makerspaces in Schools – Hybrid Pedagogy Good article about Makerspaces (& STEM /STEAM) and schools. The discussion puts perspective into the equation. The authors talk about three values of student learning and empowerment: agency, authenticity, and audience and these are used as a basis for decisions about what happens in classrooms. I like the last few sentences. “Defining making in education in terms of tools, spaces, or disciplines is insufficient. Learning through making is a philosophical approach that can affect classes across the curriculum and schools across the globe. It’s time to change the paradigm.”
Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful links

Educational Postcard: ”Equity is about g by Ken Whytock, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  Ken Whytock 


The SAMR Ladder Through the Lens of 21st Century Skills – Getting Smart by Susan Oxnevad – EdTech, SAMR, Teaching | Getting Smart“Offers an interactive graphic of the SAMR Ladder to illustrate the big picture. The image includes a sample of a vocabulary centered wiki project at each level of SAMR. The Ladder includes questions designed by Dr. Ruben R. Puentedura, Ph.D. for reflection about making the transition to the next level. The circle at each level targets research, writing and digital citizenship. There you will find a quick suggestion about ways to capture and embrace the natural progression of skills at each level. “
15 Clever Call and Responses to Use in the Classroom! – Wise Guys  In recent years, we have learned about call and responses. For those of you who are not familiar with this concept, the teacher calls out a phrase, and then the student completes the phrase. It is a great way for students to refocus their attention back on you, the teacher!
Lego Volcano Science Build a Lego Volcano Baking Soda “We are really hitting the little LEGO bricks stage and have had fun coming up with creative ways to use Legos. This post is about a LEGO week activitiy. They made a LEGO volcano. There’s nothing better then baking soda and vinegar science experiments to explore chemical reactions! It is one of our go to classic science experiments and we have a years worth of fun ideas.”
8 Examples of Transforming Lessons Through the SAMR Cycle — Emerging Education Technologies  “The author looks at 8 examples of the SAMR process, each taking an example of a typical classroom exercise that does not use technology and walking it through each phase of SAMR. For half of these, she searched and borrowed from examples that teachers had written about online (original sources are provided – in some cases she tweaked the example a bit). She also created examples of her own. In working through this, it became apparent to her that while Substitution and Augmentation can be relatively straightforward conceptually, there is even more room for interpretation when it comes to Modification and Redefinition.”
The Qualitative Formative Assessment Toolkit: Document Learning with Mobile Technology | Edutopia Some great advice about how to develope assesment that will enhance student learning. “You don’t need to use all four components of the QFAT every time learning is documented. In isolation, each artifact is powerful. When you bring them together in a deliberate and thoughtful way, though, something that was not possible without the technology becomes easily accessible and immediately useful.”
BlogBooker – Blog Book “BlogBooker produces a high-quality PDF Blog Book from all your blog’s entries and comments. Archives can be generated from any blog running on WordPress, LiveJournal (and derivatives) or Blogger.The whole process takes about 3-4 minutes, depending on the size of your blog.”

PDF, DOC, PPT, eBook Search Engine.  A PDF, DOC, PPT, eBook Search Engine.

“ is a search engine and online viewer for ebooks in pdf, ppt, xls, rtf, txt, doc file format. You can find and download the ebook but please respect the publisher and the author for their creations if their books copyrighted.”
HTML5 Online Animation Editor | Animatron “Allows you to create mobile-friendly animations, banners, and infographics.” There are 20 public projects for free before you have to pay.
Piper Lets Kids Design Circuits Using Minecraft And Electricity | TechCrunch “Piper has created a kit that lets kids create circuits in real life and then see how they interact in Minecraft. It lets you, for example, add a battery and a button to a breadboard and see those parts pop up on the screen. Electricity flowing through virtual wires simulates what is happening in real life. In short, what you make on screen happens in real life and vice versa – sort of.”
Thinkuknow – home – An internet safety guide that has resources for teaching
Genius Hour: An Apprenticeship to Citizenship – Angela Maiers “Liberating Genius in the Classroom is a free, day-by-day lesson plan for the first 20 days of implementing genius hour. We will soon also offer a student “Genius Notebook” so students can record their reflections on the lessons and easily share them with each other and you.”
10 Questioning Strategies to Differentiate Instruction | Minds in Bloom  10 simple ideas that could be adapted and used for many er levels
Free Technology for Teachers: Bias Detection Explained by Common Craft  “Common Craft recently produced a new video on that topic. Through Bias Detection Explained by Common Craft students can learn about common signs of bias in media, problems that occur when bias is ignored, and why bias is common in communication. GIFs from the video can be seen here. The video itself is embedded below.”

Bias Detection Explained by Common Craft (VIDEO)  “Building on the example of sports fans, this video illustrates how bias is a common and sometimes productive part of how we communicate. It also shows how bias can cause problems when it’s hidden or not detected. This video teaches:

* Why bias is a common and expected part of communicating
* Why high quality information needs to be unbiased
* What problems occur when bias is ignored
* What to look for – common signs of bias in media
How to teach students to build a positive online identity | eSchool News | eSchool News  “Students understand the power of social media but are they making good decisions about what to post online? How can we, as educators, help them understand not just the immediacy of their posts but also the permanence of online communications? Learning is becoming more digital and educators at all levels should be instrumental in building students’ understanding about how their online presence impacts both their personal and future professional lives. Educators are also instrumental in helping students develop lifelong habits to create and maintain a positive online identity. You can look to the 2015 ISTE White Paper, Building and Keeping a Positive Digital Identity, to help kids be more intentional in what they post online. This paper applies ISTE standards to the idea of building and maintaining a positive online identity. It poses five questions adults can use to kick-start meaningful conversations about online behaviour and identity.”
Practical Ed Tech Tip of the Week – Two Ways to Create Online Whiteboards | Practical Ed Tech “Online whiteboards can be a fantastic aid to students when they’re trying to help each other work through problems or tutor each other. Online whiteboards are also helpful to teachers who are crafting visual explanations for students. Sketchlot and Stoodle are excellent online whiteboard tools. Both will work in the web browser on your laptop, Chromebook, iPad, and Android tablet. Video demonstrations of both tools are embedded below. Sketchlot allows teachers to create and manage student accounts. Stoodle offers a platform for collaboration through whiteboards.”
Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful links

Always do your best by rhondda.p, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  rhondda.p 

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful links

Educational Postcard: ”What we are not a by Ken Whytock, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  Ken Whytock 

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful links

Educational Postcard: Evaluate ideas in by Ken Whytock, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  Ken Whytock 

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful links


Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.


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