From the Center for Christian Urban Educators

April 24, 2018

Useful links, thoughts and quotes for school leaders and teachers curated from the web by Harriet Potoka, Director of Center for Christian Urban Educators.

TECH TALK: Google Keep

Google Keep is a free note taking option that appears as a blank corkboard where you add notes. Once a note is written, it is added to your Keep as a tile, looking a bit like a Pinterest pin. This is a video on basic use of Google Keep.

  • Notes can include typed text, uploaded images, hand-drawn images, hyperlinked text, even a voice memo that can be converted into text.

  • Notes can be color-coded and labeled, and you can change the way you view your whole Keep by only looking at notes that share the same label.

  • You can schedule reminders to be sent to you about specific notes.

  • Notes can be shared, so you can collaborate on a note with others.

  • Notes can be dropped into Google Docs.

TEACHERS: No More Crappy Homework

Dave Mulder is an education professor at Dordt College and this podcast conversation with him revolves around the ineffectiveness and ‘crappyness’ of a significant majority of homework that most teachers assign. With so many other things that are effective in promoting student learning he questions why teachers continue to waste time with an outdated practice. Are you bold enough to take the #NoMoreCrappyHomework challenge and begin the process of change?

TEACHERS: Why It’s Important to Teach Your Students Financial Literacy and Three Ways to Do It

Most young people are unprepared to make informed financial choices as they move into adulthood. In fact, three out of four young adults cannot answer basic financial questions. The need to improve financial skills and capacities is not unique to any one state or school district. It is a challenge that impacts every corner of America and must be tackled at scale. Teaching financial literacy in the classroom is one promising way to improve financial capacity for today’s young people.

TEACHERS: 4 Ways Teachers Can Stop Procrastinating and Get Things Done

If you struggle with procrastination - read this. While procrastination isn't something you can conquer once and for all, day-by-day choices matter a lot in preventing it. Learn what four things you can do to make it easier to overcome those feelings of procrastination when they strike.

TEACHERS: The Best Resources For Helping Teachers Use Bloom’s Taxonomy In The Classroom

Bloom’s Taxonomy is talked about a lot in educational circles. However, a survey of visits to 23,000 U.S. classrooms revealed that the higher-order thinking skills it’s ideally designed to promote don't get much use. This article has links to a variety of blogs and charts that teachers may find helpful in developing lessons using higher-order thinking.

TEACHERS: Amazing Benefits of Technology in the Classroom (+18 Best Ways to Incorporate Technology)

Technology has its place. The trick is using it to enhance learning instead of doing the same thing in a different way. This article presents a balanced perspective on the advantages of using technology in the classroom. Each benefit provides actionable tips teachers can use to put on a technology A-game in their classrooms.

TEACHERS: Watch Astronauts Read Books From Space

If you’re looking for a way to take story time up a notch with the kids in your life, why not turn to astronauts? That’s the premise of Story Time from Space, a project from the nonprofit Global Space Education Foundation that features astronauts reading beloved children’s books from the International Space Station. The books are ones that can be read in about 15 minutes, involve some sort of concept regarding STEM and must be accurate.

TEACHERS: Why This/Not That? A thinking routine to move students from identification to analysis

One of the biggest challenges in teaching rhetorical analysis is teaching kids to move beyond identification to actual analysis. Teaching students to look for certain things in writing, they find them: repetition, parallel structure, etc. Read how using the question why this/not that? is helpful in moving students from identification to analysis.
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TEACHERS: 7 Strategies to Make Grading Easier

Grading is a time-consuming but necessary task for teachers. In this article two teachers share some hacks for making grading more effective and efficient. These ideas may help teachers give effective and efficient feedback on student work across the disciplines.

PARENTS: Reading Aloud to Young Children Has Benefit for Behavior and Attention

A new study provides evidence of the impact reading and playing with young children can have, shaping their social and emotional development in ways that go far beyond helping them learn language and early literacy skills. The parent-child-book moment even has the potential to help curb problem behaviors like aggression, hyperactivity and difficulty with attention. Read more.

PARENTS: Stop Asking These Questions and Ask These Instead

Take a look at these 7 common questions that parents ask their children and how you should reframe them to help your children become curious, resilient and problem solving learners with a spirit of generosity.

PARENTS: The New Unwritten Rule for Parents That Hurts Everyone

Today, society seems to embrace a new unwritten rule for parents. It’s a gauge by which we all seem to measure whether we’re succeeding or failing at being a good mom or dad. It’s a total shift from the parents a generation ago. Here is the new report card parents allow themselves to be evaluated by:

You must provide your child every advantage possible to get ahead.

Read why this is is not a good idea.

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LEADERS: One Shot PD or On-going PD?

Evan Robb defines ongoing professional development as PD that meets the needs of the school, occurs at the school, andfor all staff in the school. He shares two ways to start ongoing professional development in a school: hiring a paid consultant with a specific focus for the year or a school-wide book/professional study. In the first post he shares ideas on hiring a paid consultant to provide PD and in a followup post he discusses an effective way to engage in a school-wide book study.

LEADERS: 3 Prevailing Beliefs That Limit Leadership

What leaders believe about themselves, others, and events governs their attitudes and behaviors. These three beliefs about leadership will produce limited results.

LEADERS: Why It's Time to Rethink School Science Fairs

Springtime is science fair season. Thousands of kids across the country, from elementary through high school, spend weeks or months coaxing seedlings to grow, building devices to harness solar energy and carefully mixing acids and bases. This article addresses the problems inherent with many science fairs and looks at the creative ways schools are tweeking their science fairs and/or implementing a standards-based fair.

LEADERS: Putting Learning First with New Tech Tools

Technologies are changing the way we think about teaching and learning. The digital tools many students have access to both inside and outside the classroom require us all to take a hard look at the way we use these tools in the context of learning experiences. With the use of these tools are we putting the learning first? Here are five areas you can focus on to ensure that the digital tools transforming education serve the learning objectives of your students.
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When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing

Daniel Pink recently released his latest book called, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing. He doesn’t call it a “how to” book but a “when to” book to help readers understand the best time for tasks and activities in their day. He offers a sort of “cheat sheet” on when to work, sleep and play that’s useful for both personal and professional contexts. Included is research on issues from work to marriage to sports to education.

Voice Lessons for Parents: What to Say, When to Say It and When to Listen

Wendy Mogel states that her "main goal in ‘Voice Lessons' is to teach readers how to learn the dialect needed to converse with their daughters and sons at every stage and in every phase of the child’s life.” The lessons in the book are divided by age range and by topics. Wendy is a clinical psychologist who specializes in childhood. She serves on scientific advisory boards at Parents Magazine and Stanford University’s Graduate School of Education. You can read some examples from her book in this article in the Chicago Tribune. She is also the author of “The Blessing of a B Minus” and “The Blessing of a Skinned Knee."
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Getting Practical about a Multi-Text Approach to Literacy Instruction

Fontas and Pinnell - Wednesday, April 25, 4:00 pm, EDT

Unlocking Opportunities Through Family Literacy

edWeb - Wednesday, April 25, 3:00 pm, EDT

From Labs to Lifelong Learners: Visible Learning in the Science Classroom

Corwin - Thursday, April 26, 4:00 pm, EDT

SAMR, TPACK & More: Transforming Learning with Digital Content

edWeb - Wednesday, April 25, 5:00 pm, EDT

The Importance of Keyboarding

edWeb - Thursday, April 26, 5:00 pm, EDT

Effective Discipline Policies for Young Children: Supporting Social-Emotional Competence

edWeb - Tuesday, May 1, 3:00 pm, EDT

Mindsets of Social-Emotional Learning: Part 1

edWeb - Wednesday, May 2, 4:00 pm, EDT

Creating a Classroom of Active Nonfiction Reading Detectives

edWeb - Thursday, May 3, 4:00 pm, EDT

How Do We Get and Keep More Girls in STEM?

edWeb - Monday, May 7, 4:00 pm, EDT

From Goals to Growth: Supporting Each Student on Goals That Matter

ASCD - Tuesday, May 8, 3:00 pm, EDT

Voice Technology Webinar

How are edtech companies using voice technology to improve learning? Join AWS for a webinar on April 24th to learn how education customers are using Amazon Polly to support personalized learning and differentiated instruction. Amazon Polly is a service that turns text into natural sounding speech, making it easy to develop applications that leverage high-quality, text-to-speech voices that increase engagement and accessibility. Don’t miss this webinar!
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Center for Christian Urban Educators

The Center for Christian Urban Educators seeks to encourage, equip, and empower Christian educators as they impact the lives of the children entrusted to their educational care.