Teacher Tap


planningOverview: Successful Students

Many states have recently updated their standards to reflect the needs of 21st century children and young adults.

ISTE and AASL have recently updated their student standards. If you're already addressing the old standards, now is your chance to revisit your curriculum and reconnect with the teachers in your building. It's also a great opportunity to infusion Web 2.0 applications and other new technologies across the curriculum.

Explore the NETS - National Educational Technology Standards from ISTE.

  1. Creativity and Innovation
  2. Communication and Collaboration
  3. Research and Information Fluency
  4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  5. Digital Citizenship
  6. Technology Operations and Concepts

Students wrote a historical fiction book called That A Man Can Stand by Decatur Discovery Academy Grades 7-8 and publish it on Lulu. Check out student projects at That a Man Can Stand Project, Eliza's Blog and Podcast, Samuel's Blog and Podcast.

Ask Yourself: Are these elements addressed in the curriculum? Where?

These standards matter because they are about...

questionMy test for the new standards is whether they could result in motivating young people to go beyond the basics and ask high level questions.
Ask yourself: Will they challenge and engage young people in meaningful activities and assessments? How? Why?

Elements for Nesting

Examine the standards. Think about how they can be combined with content area standards to begin rebuilding and strengthening your curricula nest.

Favorite Parts of ISTE Standards

wingsJounrey to the Bottomless Pit

Favorite Parts of AASL Standards

Explore the Standards for the 21st-Century Learner from AASL.

  1. inquire, think critically, and gain knowledge;
  2. draw conclusions, make informed decisions, apply knowledge to new situations, and create new knowledge;
  3. share knowledge and participate ethically and productively as members of our democratic society;
  4. pursue personal and aesthetic growth.

Students read a graphic novel such as Laika by Nick Abadzis and create their own comic using Comic Life exploring the fact and fiction in the book.

questionWhat kind of nester as you? How will you approach the new standards? Will you develop your own program?
Will you integrate within a single subject area or all areas?
Will you tackle everything at once or will you work in phases?
What are the pros and cons of each approach?

Build Strong Nests: A Dozen Keys

strategy 1Strategy 1.
Design Learning Environments.
Shift your focus from designing instruction, to creating learning environments that immerse young people in information and technology.

Rethink your use of Google. Explore examples of how Google can be used throughout the inquiry process with the Fire Disaster example.

Example: Google Docs for collaborative technology tool and resource additions to curriculum maps.

strategy 2Strategy 2.
Stress Social/Emotional Aspects
Think about the perspective of your students. How are you meeting their social and emotional needs through designing technology-rich activities?

Provide an online "home" using easy-to-use tools such as Google Sites. Check out Cybernauts.

For mathematics, check out Mr. Kuropatwa's Classes (Applied Math 40S - W07, W08, PreCalc 20S - F06, PreCalc 30S - F06, PreCal 40S - F06, W06, W07, APCalc AB - W07, Calc 45S - S06). He uses blogs, collaboration, and images to enhance the social and emotional aspects of his classes.

The Day the World Exploded

strategy 3Strategy 3.
Connect to Content Areas.
See the big picture. Combine information and technology standards to update content standards.

Read The Day the World Exploded by Simon Winchester (adpated by Dwight Zimmerman). Connect social studies, science, and technology standards! Use historical photos, maps, and other resources from Wikipedia, USGS, USGS Krakatau, and other websites.

A mash-up is a web application hybrid. It combines data or functionality from two or more sources to create something new. These have become increasingly popular with Web 2.0 applications such as blogs, maps, and photo networks.

strategy 4Strategy 4.
Reinvent with Technology Tools.
Use technology to address those things that are difficult without technology including discussions and collaborative writing..

Use starters found in PowerPoint Sidekicks: Book Blasts such as the Step into Reading sidekick (PPT).

strategy 5Strategy 5.
Build Bridges.
Reach beyond your school. Create home-school-community connections through real-world assignments and projects. Get parents and community members involved with what's happening at school. Help young people see that what happens in school has applications beyond the walls of the school.

Share resources with parents and encourage them to participate. For instance, Journey North programs such as Hummingbirds can be followed at home. Use eBird, Frogwatch USA, Great Backyard Bird Count, Great Turtle Race, Journey North, School Yard Habitats, Whalenet, Wildlife Watch, Iditarod. Use other online project sites such as Global Schoolhouse Registry, Blue Zones, CIESE Online Classroom Projects, CyberFair Projects

strategy 2Strategy 6.
Be a Model.
Use public domain images, cite sources and apply information and technology across the curriculum.

Go to Wikimedia Commons. Do a search for an animal. Notice all the public domain and open source materials available for young people to use.

New Technologies for New Standards

Learn more about connecting traditional and new technologies to address standards at Literature Ladders: Linking Books and Internet Resources. Explore technology tools and resources related to the book Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate DiCamillo.

LeviathanFacilitate learning by creating pathfinders, learning guides, and WebQuest. Explore the Leviathan pathfinder.

Bring Learning Tools, Spaces, and Learners together with meaningful assignments, assessments, and opportunities for sharing.

Learning Tools

Learning Spaces


Go to Straight from the Horse's Mouth. Learn more about learning tools, learning spaces, and learners at High Tech Learning.

Final Thoughts

Each child is unique.
Each teacher is unique.
Each grade level is unqiue.
Each content area is unique.
Celebrate differences and learn from each other!

Learn More

Not sure where to get started? Get to know the Google tools. Then, learn more about learning tools, learning spaces, and learners:

Learn more about the national plan and technology standards:

For many more ideas, go to my website at eduscapes.com

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