Guide for Twits and Tweachers that want to tweet!

Do you use or have you thought of using twitter? To get you started, here are some basic instructions and LINGO in a snapshot.

 

  • It isn’t just for “famous people” – a HUGE amount of teachers are on twitter!

 

  • Everyone has a twitter “Name”, it starts with an @ symbol, when you want to send a message or connect to a particular person, type the @ symbol, then their twitter name.

 

  • When you “Follow” someone, you subscribe to his or her tweet feed, people can subscribe/follow to you too!

 

  • If you are tweeting on a subject or topic, a # (hashtag) is a way of grouping like tweets, try searching #edtech , #ozengchat or #ozscichat and see what comes up!!

 

  • The more people you connect with, the more intuitive your account becomes. It will suggest “like minded accounts.” For example, if you follow many teachers, it will keep suggesting teachers,  or if you follow Justin Bieber, it may suggest other “artists” such as Miley Cyrus!

 

  • Tweets can only be 140 characters– YES you may have to sacrifice grammar and spelling 2 fit wot u wnt 2 say in n thts k!! 🙂

 

 

If you are after knowledge or information on a specific topic, search twitter using hashtags as search terms. TRY. . .  #literacy OR #edmodo  #gilroycc or #saidnoteacherever

 

SEARCH a hashtag, follow accounts, and SHARE what you find in turn. Another example. . .  I have found up to date info from the Board of Studies on their twitter rather than their website to be most helpful!

 

IF you found this useful – tweet me! @1moniqued OR RE-TWEET IT!!

 

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To flip, or not to flip. THAT is the question. . .

Last year was a year of trying new things, amongst the new “things” I tried – – flipping my classroom was one. This post is a little reflection of my flipped experiences and the reasons WHY I dabbled in film making last year.

 

. . . We had an AMAZING teachmeet at Gilroy in August, Simon Harper AND Polly Dunning presented their experiences flipping their classroom, even though I was reading a lot about flipping and its benefits at the time they really inspired me to start.

NOTE: I am not an expert at flipping, in my limited experience of flipping and from my esteemed colleagues/online reading this is what I knew:

  • Flipping means students do traditional CLASSWORK at home 
  • Cleverly, teachers make this fun, presented in an engaging way (video)
  • AND the content that is covered is usually content that is traditionally covered in class
  • ALLOWING for MORE class time to be spent on the analysis and application of content.

Sounds like a GREAT idea right?! . . . yeah- it is BUT my reasons for flipping were TOTALLY DIFFERENT!! I teach across all areas of technology in junior years, this includes timber, textiles and food technology project areas. We have 5 lessons a fortnight (5 hours) and only a 13 week rotation to complete a program, booklet, design folio and practical project.  . . .HECTIC!!!

I loved the idea of flipping, because:

  • I typically demonstrated practical skills ONCE – then students had to mimick, copy or do
  • Students watched my practical demonstrations that may have shown ONE particular method for doing something, there could be many applications (of a timber joint or decorative technique for example) time usually constraint this OR the busy nature of classroom numbers did
  • My classes in 2012 had a diverse range of students- levels of language, literacy, numeracy as well as physical capabilities
  • Some students were getting frustrated- at not being able to achieve a level of practical quality they expected
  • Many students were visual learners, current resources were not tailored to their learning style
  • Students WANTED to be more independent, they wanted to succeed on their own.

So, what REALLY propelled my to start to flip was- MY STUDENTS WANTED to become an expert in practical skills, they needed to have a DEEPER understanding of “something” before they were confident to try and apply it (I just want to be clear on something, I am not talking about their willingness to fail/make mistakes) – I am saying they WANTED TO DO BETTER, THEY WANTED TO WORK HARDER, THEY WANTED TO KNOW MORE and OUR CLASSTIME and MY CURRENT TEACHING METHODS didn’t allow it!!??

So, flipping essentially added extra hours to my classes. I used vimeo to upload my own video/links to edmodo, I also used existing youtube videos and tube chop to edit them.

I sourced videos on garnish techniques, handling pastry, sewing a closed seam, creating your own applique from felt, setting up jigs for a trimmer/router, using a router to create inlays, making your own bees wax polish and making the perfect white sauce.

I also made my own videos! With the help of another staff member we pre-recorded food demonstrations- students watched these on average 3 times EACH (this was 30-40mins of video time??!!) Students were also creating/sharing their own videos?? “Miss – can I film you doing this and practice at home?”  – –  umm OF COURSE YOU CAN!!!  (by this stage, I had totally gotten over the fact that once recorded, by voice sounds like a kid’s!! lol)

I dont really know if this truly is “flipping” ?? as I still felt the need in most cases to demonstrate and conduct the SAME practical demonstrations in lessons – BUT the videos really supplemented this and addressed all the concerns I was having. . . .

THE RESULT: I had VERY HAPPY STUDENTS. Their quality of practical work improved because they were conducting more research at home – I know, this really is a “DERR” moment right? And this is not too dissimilar to the benefits that Polly and Simon had explained at the TeachMeet, but you have to understand, the motivation that DROVE me to spend the time preparing all the videos/links WAS. 

Again, I repeat – I AM NOT AN EXPERT OF FLIPPING, making videos or screencasting (check out Simons blog for inspiring examples of this). Is this even flipping?? dont think so??– BUT, my students were pretty happy.

Polly and Simon certainly showed me a way of adding another dimension to my teaching that I will continue to use in 2013 – I seriously advise you to start whatever hybrid of flipping suits you !!

BYOD workshop materials – apps, online tools and how you ACTUALLY DO BYOD in the classroom.

Excitably this year at the IIATE conference I ran a workshop on BYOD (bring your own device).

How can portable devices such as tablets, smart phones, laptops, iPads and iPods be integrated effectively into technology classes to enhance learning?
Online tools, apps, games and websites that are relevant to a wide variety of TAS subjects will be demonstrated. Bring your own device on the day (ALL platforms and device types are welcome).”

Here is my prezi introducing the concept/idea of BYOD- – – – > PREZI 

In the weeks prior to the workshop I employed the help of my PLN to gather additional resources, because other teachers in my PLN teach in differing subject areas AND different device types AND they are pretty clever!

Some of the responses looked like this:

I went through each app that was suggested compiling a list that worked with my workshop sections/audience (keeping in mind my workshop was for TAS teachers in a high school setting):

  1. APPS
  2. WEBSITES
  3. STUFF FOR TEACHERS
  4. STUFF FOR LATER

THIS info I then put into these handouts to be used on the day.

I chose to use QR codes as they are a GREAT way of getting A LOT of info into a small space – each QR code on the handout contained WHAT the tools DOES and HOW it could be integrated into the classroom. I can also attribute the groovy layout to comic life, SO EASY!!

PDF FILES:

Apps for BYOD

Websites for students BYOD

Stuff for teachers

STUFF TO CHECK OUT LATER- BYOD

HOW DO YOU DO BYOD IN YOUR CLASSROOM ??? ANY TIPS FOR NEWBIES OR SEASONED TECH HEADS??

TeachMeet Hills – Gilroy Catholic College

Here is a collection of  EXTRA STUFF and LINKS from the Teachmeet !!

  • INTRO “teacher memes” – – – -> PREZI HERE
  • Link to RSVP page to “find” new contacts – – – -> GOOGLE DOC HERE
  • Copy of run sheet WITH QR codes – – – >TMrunsheet

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PRESENTATIONS!! 

. . . can be found on the TeachMeet wiki, however, copies are also below:

Polly Dunning : FlipClass Presentation

Lisa Nash: QR Codes

Darren Conway: Digital Literacy

Clarinda Brown: Turning Falling Hurting Learning – Mini PK

Malyn Mawby: Mirror Mirror

Minties, Teachmeet ACU . . . and my love of Dr Suess

DR Suess is an ongoing inspiration of mine, I often use his quotes in class as a THEME or THOUGHT for a lesson/unit- students always respond in a positive way, many have fond and nonsensical memories of his books, but I always like to share other random Suess facts like:

  •  I admire HOW he once used his creativity for evil (advertising) . . .  then for good (cartoonist and writer)
  • His cartoons were often published and used as political propaganda, and he was seen as quite an activist 
  • When his cartoons became popular he later used his written voice to advocate against the racisim and discrimination of African Americans and Jews in America
  • He cleverly hides opinions and views of anti-discrimination, environmentalism AND anti consumerism WITHIN the story lines of his children’s books (think about it, WHO reads them to their kids! prime audience, what a bloody clever man!!)
  • Along with the morals within his stories the illustrations carefully acted as subliminal imagery . . . to the point where some books were considered too controversial for publication!
  • AND! the popularity of colours used within the books illustrations have earnt themselves their own PANTONE colour coding!! 🙂
Did YOU know that stuff?? . . . probably, you are pretty clever!!  🙂 hahaha
. . . ok! now to the MINTIES!!!!
Not only are minties YUMMY! there is that cheeky slogan “moments like these” – I could go on for HOURS about the advertising symbolism and history of minties, but simply- they are tasty. . . . in a tounge in cheek way I like to give them to students, not as a “bribe” but as a cheeky way of saying “Suck it up, have a mintie, work it out” 🙂 . . .the funny illustrations and discussion over a mouthful of mintie usually break a smile and work or whatever continues ! 🙂
Have you had many a mintie moment? . . . .teaching isn’t an easy profession. 

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…”

So you like TeachMeets do you !! What a journey of learning you have JUST embarked on!!

Thursday night was the FIRST Teachmeet held at a university. . . . it WENT OFF!! there was a queue at the door to get into the room !!  

I was in seriously good company, including some presentations from:

I really recommend you stalk/follow these guys. . . such passionate educators with lots of thoughts, knowledge and experience to share!
. . . AND !! how good were the pre-service teachers!! WOWZERS!!

I presented . . . well I THINK THAT’S WHAT YOU CALL IT?? hahaha

For  those that were there, sorry, and those that were not you missed out on:

  1. The hole in the back region of my skirt that I had been toting round since period 3
  2. My dismal technical effort, it blew my cover that I dont actually use my work email !!
  3. Close encounters with the stuffed dingo BEFORE my presentation started
  4. I think I swore?
Fun for all!! 🙂
– – – – – – > The POINT of my  PK was reflect on Suess-inspired topics such as:
  • “it’s fun to have fun but you have to know how” – – – ->  HOW can teachers have FUN when time is so poor? and learning is so serious??
  • “A persons a person no matter how small” – – – > the variety of learners and individuals in your care as teacher
  • They say I’m old fashioned and live in the past, but sometimes progress progresses too fast” – – – >  How will you make learning contextual and current as technology and social issues change?
Thank you to my twitter helpers!! Alex, Julie, Greg, Simon and Karla  . . . there were many more that shared thoughts, but I only had 7 mins!!
PREZI in its entirety HERE!!

http://prezi.com/bin/preziloader.swf

I feel so happy to be part of such a dynamic profession, surrounded by others who inspire me. . . .

Today was good, today was fun, tomorrow is another one!”  – – – -> HAVE A MINTIE!! 

 

 

– HUGE THANK YOU to Miriam Tanti and Leanne Cameron for hosting !  🙂

Why am I so tired?

I am exhausted.

Friday afternoon rolled round and I was dragging my legs behind me. . .  before 9pm I was flaked out on the lounge. EVEN after a mammoth 13 hour sleep I didn’t yet feel revived?? It’s Sunday morning now, Saturday night was pretty much Friday on repeat (LAME) – BUT I AM JUST SO TIRED!!

WHY??

Because, this is what I have done in the past two weeks. . .

  • Attended the  TEACHMEET at which I did two presentations: “How students best learn” and a 15 minute work shop on Edmodo
  • Delivered the 6 hour White Card induction package for construction, AFTER school to 20 year 9- 12 students – this included preparing all the material/marking tests in free periods 😦
  • 3 days at YEAR 7 camp! It rained for 17 hours straight on day 2. . . enough said.
  • An EXCITING VISIT to NBCS – thanks to Liam Dunphy – I got to see their new TAS building and learning spaces!
  • Conquered a bout of cooties = a day off work post camp,  something camp related I’m sure!
  • Decided that TAS teachers needed a FORUM to be able to communicate on. There wasn’t one, so with NO background experience, I MADE ONE?  . . . yes, it was as challenging as it sounds!! BUT NOW THERE ARE 120 MEMBERS 10 DAYS LATER!!
  • Organised/held a VET Construction incursion for the concreting unit of work- the class created a concrete path in 6 hours!!
  • Had the WS-iiate term 1 branch meeting  @Cherrybrook HS
  • Ran “Crazy Hair Day For kids” to support the Leukaemia Foundation- in one day we raised just shy of $700!!

– Oh yeah, in between and around all this I went to work from 7:30am each day- planned/taught lessons, marked assessments, proof read folios, wrote TWO year 12 half yearly exams,  prepared 2 classes of reports, wrote chapter two of my book, read 120 pages of another two and still managed to find the time to do a spot of internet shopping!! 

 

AND!! I also need to add, that I have been doing the last TWO WEEKS WITHOUT MY COFFEE MACHINE!!! .. .it’s visiting the doctors 😦

 

 

WOW! Imagine if I wrote down what I did  for each week in the term, not just two?

Imagine if YOU did . . . it may explain why you feel tired too!!

 

 

 

 

SLIDESHOW OF MY TWO WEEKS IN PICTURES:

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EDMODO Professional learning materials. . .

HOW TO EDMODO HANDOUT

 

 

I have been asked a few times to provide the various powerpoints, handouts etc that I have used to promote EDMODO, so, here they are ALL in one spot!

  • WHY you should use EDMODO? Integrating online learning tools into your teaching – – – > Prezi here
  • EdmodoCon 2011 presentation recording “Aussie showcase 1:1” – – – -> video here
  • TeachMeet world record Sydney workshop presentation WITHOUT audio – – -> here
  • TeachMeet world record Sydney workshop presentation WITH audio – – -> teach meet 15min

There are SOOOOOOO many resources that Edmodo provide on both their BLOG and their HELP pages- See what rollout resources they have before you go and re-invent the wheel!

Contact for Edmodo-y help:

Edmodo teaching profile

Twitter profile

Learning? – – – > TeachMeet Sydney 2min Presentation

This video was made with the help of high-school teachers and students from years 7-12.

Teachers answered the question “Students best learn . . .”

Students responded by describing “I best learn when. . . ”

The responses were not censored, or adapted, it is each persons individual reply that makes this video genuine.
There is no right or wrong answer.

If you are teacher watching this, I hope it highlights the diverse needs of the students in your classrooms.

No ONE teaching strategy works for all.

VIMEO LINK- – – – ->   Learning?

 

 

I also presented with Henrietta Miller on Edmodo – the content of the presentation and other proffessional development resources can be found – – – > HERE!

 

 

More info on up-coming Teachmeets?