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Showing posts from August, 2019

Return on Instruction (ROI) Revisited

The pursuit to improve never ends and nor should it. With all of the disruption we see as a result of the 4th Industrial Revolution, changes to how we educate kids have to be considered. The result has been districts, schools, and educators making a great deal of investment in an array of ideas, strategies, and solutions with the goal of improving learning for all kids. Obviously, this makes sense, and I am all for it. However, caution must be exerted when there is an urge to purchase the next “silver bullet” or embrace ideas that sound great on the surface but have little to show in terms of evidence of improvement at scale. Results, both qualitative and quantitative, matter, and this is something that everyone should be mindful of.

Over the years, I have not shied away from discussing the need to align ideas and strategies to research as well as evidence that shows in some way that there is an improvement in student outcomes. Seems fair and reasonable, right? You would think so as th…

Buncee and Immersive Reader: A Winning Combination for Assistive Learning

I am a huge fan of Buncee. The following is a guest post by Rachelle Dene Poth (@Rdene915), Spanish and STEAM Teacher at Riverview High School in PA.

For several years, Buncee has been one of my favorite creation tools; both for personal use and for classroom instruction. While there are many digital tools to choose from when it comes to teaching and having our students create, Buncee’s versatility and ease-of-use make it a go-to tool for all creative needs. Now, Buncee’s recent integration with Microsoft’s Immersive Reader makes the platform even more accessible for students of diverse ages, backgrounds, and abilities to learn 21st-Century Skills and express themselves. What my students love the most is that Buncee offers something for everyone, and I love that they love it.

Always keeping a finger on the pulse of their community’s needs, the Buncee team consistently listens to their community and refines the platform based on this! Their integration with Immersive Reader is a perfect …

Learning and Reflecting with Video

I remember like it was yesterday when I began blogging back in 2009. To think that I would still be writing a post a week many years later is a vast understatement, coming from someone who had every excuse not to start in the first place. Trust when I say that it’s a struggle these days to either come up with new ideas or to add a unique angle to what has already been written. If it’s important to you, then you’ll find a way. If not, then you will make an excuse. I am by no means a great writer, but I’d like to think that this is only one driving force that keeps me writing. If you were to ask me why I really write, my response would be to reflect and learn openly.

Part of my evolution has been to explore new pathways to reach my professional goals while attempting to give something back in return to educators. In my quest to practice what I preach and grow, I have begun to utilize video as a means to articulate ideas, share my learning, and openly reflect. When you think about the pot…

If It's Easy Then it Probably Isn't Learning

What is the purpose of education? To many, this might seem like a ridiculous question with the answer being quite obvious. Or is it? For this post at least, let’s go with learning. Some might equate this with the successful ability to be able to recall or memorize facts and information. The casual observer might then anoint anyone who is able to do this effectively as smart or intelligent. Perhaps he or she is. Is being able to ace a standardized test an accurate indication of what someone knows, can do or both? My opinion on this is no.

For each person, there is a particular path to acquire, apply, and construct new knowledge.  It is much more challenging to accomplish this as some might think, and the journey is often convoluted. The fact remains that learning is anything but linear. It is more about the process than it is getting to a particular destination. Herein lies what I really want to discuss.  When you think about the greatest minds in our society, perception is rarely reali…