Thursday, June 29, 2017

Front Row Offers Differentiated Resources for Social Studies Instruction

Front Row has developed a great reputation over the last couple of years for the differentiated math and ELA resources that it offers to teachers and students. This week at ISTE 17 I sat down with the CEO of Front Row to take a look at the new social studies resources that Front Row is offering.

Front Row's new social studies resources are organizing into fifteen units. The units cover the topics most commonly included in social studies classes in the United States. Some of those unit topics are Civil Rights, the American Revolution, and Economics. Within each topic in you will find articles and discussion questions for your students.

Applications for Education
Front Row lets you choose from multiple versions of the same article to distribute to your students. You can give the same version of an article to all students or give different versions to individual students in your classroom. Front Row has a short diagnostic test for your students to take when they join your Front Row classroom. The results of that diagnostic test can help you identify which version of each article to give to your students.

Register for Teaching History With Technology where you'll learn how to use many more tools like Front Row in your social studies lessons. 

Join Me Tomorrow for Practical Ed Tech Live - ISTE Recap + Q&A

Join me tomorrow morning at 9am EDT for episode #10 of Practical Ed Tech Live. I'll be doing my complete recap of ISTE 17 and answer your ed tech questions live. You can join me on my YouTube channel (subscribe to be reminded when I go live) or you can join me on Facebook.

If you have questions that you want me to answer, feel free to send me an email in advance and I'll be sure to include my answer in the show tomorrow.

Go Back to School With Me

Throughout the year I am fortunate to work with teachers all over the United States and Canada. I have recently opened up some space in my August calendar. If you need a back-to-school keynote or professional development workshop, send an email to richardbyrne (at) and let's talk about how I can help your school year get off to a great start.

Take a look at the list of my most popular keynote and workshops of the last year.

I look forward to working with you.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

A Comparison of Historic Journeys

I'm writing this as I zoom through the air at 500+ miles per hour to get home after ISTE 17. Just 100 years ago this trip would have been on a train for days. And 100 years before that the journey would have be counted in weeks and months. That kind of comparison is what you will find on A Race of Discovery.

A Race of Discovery features comparisons of the time it took to complete eleven significant, historical journeys to the time those same journeys would require today. Some of the journeys that you will find on A Race of Discovery are those of Lewis and Clark, Captain Cook, and Christopher Columbus.

Applications for Education
A Race of Discovery does a nice job of showing visitors the significant stops on historical journeys. Unfortunately, the maps are light on details within those stops. That's why I'd use these maps as a model that students could follow to create their own historical journey comparison maps in Google's My Maps. My Maps lets students create maps with multiple layers. I'd have students use that function to create one layer for the historical journey with detailed placemarks then one layer for the current journey.

Discover more ideas for teaching history with technology in my upcoming course, Teaching History With Technology.

H/T to Maps Mania

Kahoot Unveils a New Mobile App and Game Play Options

Kahoot announced the release of new mobile app this week at ISTE 17. The app, still in beta, addresses a lot of the complaints about Kahoot that I've heard from teachers over the last few years.

The first item to note in the mobile app is that your students will now see the questions and answer choices on the same screen. Previously, your students always had to look at a screen in the front of the room for the question and then look back down at their devices for the answer choices. That disconnect sometimes causes students to select the wrong answer choice despite actually knowing the correct answer.

Putting the questions and answer choices on the same screen enables Kahoot to now offer a "play at home" option. "Challenges" is the term that Kahoot uses to describe the option for students to play games from home or anywhere else that they connect to the web. You can send challenges to your students to play anywhere and anytime.

Learn more about the new Kahoot mobile app in the video embedded below.

To try the new Kahoot mobile app, complete the form on this Kahoot page.