SCHS EdTech Update

A Weekly Communication of All Things Tech Related

7th Edition: February 12, 2016

Teacher Spotlight: Jeff Bracken and Maggie Payne

Technology and Quilting... Really?

Quilts are known for capturing a story, and there is a great deal of planning and crafting that goes into creating one. Jeff and Maggie have taken the storytelling power of quilts to another level, using quilt squares to collect student thinking about the Depression Era. Each student group created 5 quilt squares: 1 with a thesis statement, 3 with supporting quotes from Depression Era letters they read, and 1 with a supporting image. Technology was clearly not the focus here; it served a collaboration tool used to share student ideas in an innovative manner. Julie Webb helped pull those pieces together by sharing the library maker-space and her technology knowledge to help kids "make it work."

What's next for this project? The classes are working to determine the order, top to bottom, each strip of squares will get sown together, so that the quilt tells a story. Then the students will do a summative writing assignment, addressing the driving question "Did the Great Depression unite the country or divide it?"

This project is innovative, rigorous, and engaging. Talk to Maggie and Jeff to learn more!

Looking for a Way to Redefine Learning using Tech?

SAMR is an acronym that explores how technology can impact learning in the classroom. When you look at the four levels, remember that good planning will likely heavily involve the Substitution/Augmentation levels with occasional, purposeful inclusion of tasks that reach Modification/Redefinition.

An interesting way to try to redefine learning in your classroom is to email or tweet out to experts in the field that you are studying. Ashley Fishback's students were able to set up a video conference with microtechnology experts from Switzerland, giving them a much richer understanding of the content than they could get just by reading about it.

Check out this blog post by Alice Keeler, an innovator in classroom edtech. She has some tips for how to try this with your students.

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Internal Visits

It's no secret that there are many great teachers in our school. Fox DeMoisey and Maggie Terry have been reaching out to you about opportunities to go see what's going on in those classrooms. Just like the RocketCast initiative, this allows us to steal great ideas from our colleagues and shape them into our own.

Think about participating in one of the upcoming visits. It will definitely be inspiring!