Ranger Ready

Tech Thursday | 2 February 2017

Differentiation with Digital Tools

By giving students a choice and a voice in their learning, teachers can begin to use digital tools to differentiate teaching and learning. Include students in questions like:

  • What do you want to learn?
  • How do you want to learn it?
  • Where do you want to learn it?
  • Who will you learn it with?
  • How will you show that you've learned it?
  • What will you use to show you've learned it?
  • What can you create to show your learning?
  • Why is important to learn this?
  • What are the transferable skills?

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The International Society of Technology in Education (ISTE) - Standards for Students describe students as computational thinkers when they have the ability to decipher information through digital differentiation.

Computational Thinker

Students identify problems, utilize data, and develop solutions.

  • Identify and break apart problems

  • Collect data

  • Synthesize data for solutions


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Make learning fun with TES Teach with Blendspace, the free and easy edtech tool teachers love for lessons, projects, presentations, and more.

Over 2 million educators, parents, and students worldwide use this tool for:
• Differentiated Instruction
• Project-Based Learning
• Flipped Learning

BlendSpace Tutorial

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Ready 1:1 Teacher of the Week

Each week in the Ranger Ready Tech Thursday Newsletter, a new teacher will be featured as the Ready 1:1 Teacher of the Week. These are teachers at Naaman Forest High School who are transforming teaching and learning in the classroom through technology integration using the iPad.

Lynette Varrassi

Mrs. Varrassi teaches AP English Language and Composition and AP Seminar. She received her B.A. in English and M.Ed. from UNT. She has been teaching for 17 years; the last two years here in The Forest.

What is your favorite iPad app to use with students and why?

It's a toss up between Nearpod, AnswerGarden, and Popplet. I paid for a Gold Nearpod membership and can have my kids do virtual field trips to areas corresponding to what we're reading. My students love doing graphic organizers in Popplet. It helps them see connections because they create the graphic organizer and draw the connections that work best for them. AnswerGarden is a great word cloud tool. I use it so my students can see what each other is thinking then convert it into a Tagxedo. I post the Tagxedo into my Google Classroom so each class can see what was said in all my classes. We look at trends in the Tagxedo and it gives us a point of discussion for later.

What do you like to do in your leisure time?

I love to read. I'm a fan of murder mystery and sci-fi novels (and TV shows). I also spend a lot of time with my husband and kids. We have an 11-year-old daughter and an 8-year-old son. My kids are obsessed with playing Pokémon Go, and we like to play it together. It's a great way for us to spend time together and to get some exercise.

Garland ISD: GISD Ready Rising Stars NFHS Ms Varrassi

Connect. Empower. Lead.

#EdcampGarland is an unconference event for ALL educators. This participant-driven event will provide organic professional learning experiences for educators from all over the DFW- metroplex. Come be a part of the discussion about education topics that interest you and earn 5 hours of CPE credits.

What is an EdCamp?

EdCamp 101


#EdCampGarland will be on Saturday, March 4, 2017, here at Naaman Forest. Please register early because tickets are expected to go fast for this FREE unique professional development experience open to ALL GISD educators and educators from neighboring school districts.

EdCamp Garland

Saturday, March 4th, 8am-1pm

4843 Naaman Forest Boulevard

Garland, TX