Integrating technology into your teaching practice can be intimidating. Where do you start? What tools do you choose? What are the questions you need to ask?
In Selecting the Right Tech Solutions for Your Classroom, you’ll get the guidance you need to thrive with edtech, whether you’re just dipping your toe in or rethinking a districtwide approach. Throughout the course, you’ll engage in online content, develop materials specific to your context and receive feedback from experts. The course culminates with a capstone project that can be used to communicate with stakeholders about your selected technology, your rationale for choosing it and how you’ll implement it.
Educators seeking new technology can start by consulting a database of pre-vetted edtech tools, rated based on alignment with both child data privacy laws and the district’s instructional vision. Each entry includes notes about what the software does, how it can be used in the classroom, and the appropriate age level. Kaye is also working on aligning the database to the ISTE Standards so teachers can see at a glance which standards each tool can help them meet.
Every app falls into one of four categories:
Tools the district approves, supports, pays for, and will train teachers to use.
Tools that are approved and can be freely used on an independent basis.
Tools that are approved with stipulations, such as age or parental permission requirements.
Tools that are not approved because they don’t align with the district’s vision or data privacy needs.
Teachers can request to have a tool vetted
Teachers who choose a pre-vetted app from the approved list can start using it right away, without any further action needed. Educators who have a specific tool in mind that hasn’t yet been vetted can submit a request form that asks questions such as:
How does the tool connect to the curriculum?
Will students be consumers or producers when using it?
How easy is it to learn and use?
What are some of the things they plan on doing with it?
the International Society for Technology in Education to publish a book, titled Learning Transported: Augmented, Virtual and Mixed Reality for All Classrooms, to offer practical insights, lesson plans, and classroom examples so educators can make the most of these experiential worlds.
Augmented reality superimposes a digital layer on the world around us, often activated by scanning a trigger image or via GPS (think Pokemon Go!). Virtual reality takes users away from the real world, fully immersing students in a digital experience that replaces reality. Mixed reality takes augmented a step further by allowing the digital and real worlds to interact and the digital components to change based on the user’s environment.
DEVICES: iOS, Android, COURSE: English Language Arts, Speaking and Listening, GRADES: K-1
Augmented and Virtual Reality with EON
DEVICES: iOS, Android, COURSE: Earth and Space Science, GRADE: 4, 45 minutes
Scavenger Hunting as a Classroom Activity
The app offers teachers a unique way to create a scavenger hunt by designing AR messages and leaving them in specific places for students to “discover.”
The Waypoint App also allows for creation of educational scavenger hunts using augmented reality. Educators can easily add questions that address lesson objectives, set specific locations where the questions are hidden, and then have students hunt for questions by following the map. The hunt is easily shared with students on a variety of platforms, including text messaging and email.
Breakout EDU has become a popular game in education. Driven by creativity, teamwork, and problem-solving, the game provides a fun learning experience as it challenges students to compete in solving puzzles. The game centers on a series of questions; each solved question unlocks the next part of the activity. Students work in groups, competing against other groups to open all the locks first.
A virtual reality headset can take students on an immersive journey to another world. But no matter how cool it is, if that $3,000 piece of equipment enters a classroom and doesn’t provide any real instructional value, it can quickly become a very expensive paperweight.
Most schools don’t do edtech procurement really well yet. Sometimes we buy products that end up in closets because they don’t fit the instructional needs of students, and we end up not being good stewards of taxpayer dollars.
Located in the district’s central office, where hundreds of teachers and staff members stop by each week for professional development, the playground offers a creative space that encourages teachers to explore new tools that have been vetted and approved by the district’s tech department.
In the United States, K-12 schools spend more than $13 billion a year on edtech — often without any idea whether it will make a difference in learning outcomes.
Join ISTE CEO Richard Culatta and a panel of educators and students to understand what digital citizenship means today and how we can empower students to engage in our complex, connected world
ason Ohler’s online course in Digital Citizenship is available as a MOOC, and contains many terrific resources. In his book, Digital Community, Digital Citizen, he stressed the importance of building positive culture and involving students in policy making. I highly recommend his work and the course.
Just as in the 1970s, when antidrug campaigns were scoffed at by the very people they were targeting, anti-bullying campaigns are also losing their effectiveness. I got a taste of this firsthand last year when I spoke about sexting, online safety and cyberbullying at an all-school assembly. When a student blurted out an obscenity during the sexting portion, the students went wild and didn’t listen to a thing I said. I was frustrated and discouraged. Later, I offered an iPad mini to the student who produced the best video and poster. Even that got little response.
The fact is, anti-bullying clichés have become a shut-off switch. What we really need to be doing is giving students actual skills to prevent bullying. To get that conversation going, I pose this question to students: “Will you accept the identity that others give you?”
Canada will see the fastest growth, with a CAGR of 145.2 percent over the forecast period. Other leaders in terms of growth include Central and Eastern Europe at 133.5 percent, Western Europe at 121.2 percent and the U.S. at 120.5 percent.
Leslie Fisher Thinks Augmented Reality First, Then VR in the Classroom
An interview with the former Apple K–12 systems engineer, who will participate in multiple sessions during ISTE.
THE Journal: What do you think about virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in the classroom? Is the cost point for VR prohibitive?
In virtual reality, one of my favorite apps is CoSpaces. It allows anyone to design a 3D space, and then interact with it in virtual reality.
Virtual reality can be quite affordable with Google Cardboard. We can get into basic interaction in VR with Cardboard. There are 40 or 50 VR apps where you can simply use Cardboard and explore. Google Street View allows you to do virtual viewing of many different locations. That technology augments what the teacher is doing.
Most kids can’t afford to buy their own Oculus headset. That price point is quite a bit higher. But we don’t need to have 30 kids using Oculus all of the time. Two or three might work
If you search Twitter effectively, there are not only great resources but great people to help you teach differently and keep the classroom more entertaining. You can grow your own personal learning network.