5 EdTech hacks that changed my life

Sometimes things on the Internet change society…

Take the Rick Roll for example (or just Rick Astley, in general):

giphy

The following Internet-based things (in no particular order) have changed my life as a teacher. Maybe they’ll do the same for you.

  1. Hotkeys that open the most recently closed tab in Chrome
  2. Google Docs Explore Tool, formerly known as the Research Tool
  3. Canvas SpeedGrader
  4. YouTube videos at 1.5x speed
  5. Symbaloo

spmkoae

(so keep reading!)

Continue reading

No Blog Love, but YouTube is growing

Let’s be honest… While I maintain this blog as a personal portfolio, I do have secret aspirations of becoming internet famous. However, I don’t promote it because, frankly my dear, I don’t have the time. That being said, I recently ran across a surprising shout out for my How-To-Flubaroo videos. Sadly, I don’t remember corresponding with the author, but I think that’s because it was from a few years ago. That playlist is up to a couple hundred views.

However, I have one video that continues to garner views, even though I made it three years ago. I made a three-part tutorial on setting up a Google Site as a teacher’s webpage. Ironically, I don’t even use Google Sites anymore, having opted for the improved aesthetics of Weebly this past year. For whatever reason, that video now has over 13K views. I don’t get it…

 

It’s a major award!

I am quite honored to have been selected for the district staff excellence award. My school district has over 10 thousand teachers and 19 thousand employees. I am even more excited about it because my husband got it a couple of years ago and I think it’s awesome that we have both been recognized for our efforts. Most of all, I appreciate the colleagues and students that have congratulated me on it when I least expected it. The greatest award as a teacher is always when you feel appreciated by your students.

Artifact Curation for BTs

My district takes mentoring new teachers seriously. Mentors must go through a multi-day workshop and continuing education to stay updated on strategies and initiatives that are valued by the district. We also meet in larger groups to learn more practical knowledge for managing the day-to-day struggles of a new teacher. This is my contribution for teachers that are a bit stressed about our evaluation process.

This infographic shares strategies for teachers seeking to maintain artifacts 
screen-shot-2016-11-27-at-9-26-54-pm

Creating Business Connections

I am so lucky to live and teach in Raleigh, NC.  We have so many large corporations and small businesses that work in STEM-related fields. RTP is a proverbial plethora of industry experiences. I have had the fortune to conduct a two-week externship as well as four day-long immersion experiences in our community. An important aspect of maintaining business relationships is making sure that they are aware of the impact that they have had. This was a video I made to try to explain and thank BASF for the two-week experience.

BASF Thank You Video

An Anticlimactic End

My tenure in the Wagiphyke County Teacher Leader Corps comes to an end today. Three years and 15 workshops later, we are ending with reflecting on our experience. I’ve actually really enjoyed my time in TLC. It has not always been quite what was presented, but I always leave the workshops feeling energized and with new ideas for my classroom just because I get to interact with other enthusiastic educators. I have learned many new things and lots of new tech tools, most of those are documented here on this blog. I don’t know that we were ever able to really implement Dr. Wirt’s original vision, but being a part of this 680-teacher cohort has provided me with more leadership opportunities in my school and in the county. I am glad that I volunteered for this opportunity, if only because I got to work closely with two colleagues at my school that made our training days more enjoyable. It’s going to be weird not having these workshops anymore, but I will be replacing them with the same number of STEM coordinator meetings instead!