Sunday, August 29, 2010

What's Your Best Advice for New Teachers?

Ten days ago I asked you to share the new thing(s) you're planning to do in the new school year. In 72 hours 140 of you responded and I shared all of your responses here. Following up on the success of that survey I've created another survey for us to share our best advice for new teachers entering the classroom this fall. As I did with the survey about the new things we're trying this year, I will compile all of the survey responses and post them in a Google Documents presentation. I will leave the survey open through 12pm EST on Wednesday then post the responses on Thursday morning. If you want to me to link back to your Twitter account or blog, please include those links in your response.

Survey is now closed.

Back to School Tech with CNN & Mario Armstrong

As I shared yesterday, the highlight of my weekend was being mentioned by Mario Armstrong during his Saturday morning CNN segment. Yesterday's segment was part of a series of back to school tech tips. I've embedded those segments below.

Yesterday's segment - and Free Technology for Teachers.

August 21 segment - Organization tools

My list of student organization tools can be found here.

August 16 segment - Laptops vs. Netbooks - Mario's recommendations.

If you're in the netbook market, I have been very happy with my Acer Netbook(affiliate link).

August 8 segment - saving money on back to school supplies including books.

If you're viewing this in RSS, click through to see the videos.

One Principal's Approach to Cell Phones in Classrooms

Last week I posted a video about two approaches to dealing with cell phones in schools. In short, the video featured a school with a zero-use policy toward cell phones and a school that was trying to use cell phones as mobile learning devices. This morning The Boston Globe featured Burlington, Massachusetts High School principal Patrick Larkin and his vision for the use of technology in his school. One of the things that jumped-out at me while reading the article was this quote from Patrick in response to a question about concerns that students will cheat or be distracted by using cell phones or laptops: “If they want to cheat, they’re going to cheat,’’ Larkin said, “with technology or anything else.’’ He said he doesn’t see much difference between this and the old scourge of teachers — note passing. “We’ve had no problem with note passing the last few years . . . I wonder why . . . they’re texting!’’ he said. Read the whole article here and make sure you read the closing quote from Principal Larkin.

Patrick Larkin takes an approach to dealing with cell phones in schools that many of us would like to see in schools. Rather than spending our effort and limited time telling students to put away their pocket computers (cell phones) we should put that effort into learning how we can leverage mobile devices to improve the learning experiences of our students.

On a related note, here is Patrick's guest post on this blog: Every Principal Needs A Blog!