Tonight, January 22, 2019, I am hosting a Twitter Chat for Newsela. The topic of the chat is how to implement blended learning in the classroom setting. Of course, the topics are all going to align with a traditional chat,
Getting Started with a Checklist
If you are new to blended learning or would like to learn more about checklist, take a moment and read the blog post about checklist. This is an easy read that will help to understand how to get started and the different elements of a checklist. You can find the blog post here. If you have any questions about checklist, send me a quick note and I can help you out with getting started.
Week Long Writing Checklist
You have two options on how you use the below checklist.
Click the checklist below to download a copy of the five day checklist. Note: the code to get $1.99 off from the store will be posted in the Newsela Chat.
Notes and Resources
The Newsela Articles can be found at www.newsela.com
The Oreo Writing Graphic Organizer can be found on Scholastic website.
Timers for the Classroom
Plan to visit and learn more from Marcia and the DSD PD Team at
FETC January 27th-January 29th
Level Up in Personalized Learning - January 27th at 8:00-10:00
STEAM BINS in the Blended Learning Classroom -January 27th 1:30-3:30
How to Level Up in Blended Learning - Januaary 28th 8:00-10:00
Three Phases of Blended Learning - January 28th 1:00-3:00
Learner Profile cards in the classroom - January 29th 10:30-12:30
TCEA February 5th
Nuts and Bolts of Blended Learning - February 5th 8:00-11:00 Room 303A
OETC February 12th-14th
Blended Learning Workshop February 12th 8:00-10:00
Student Ownership February 13th 8:00-9:00
Global Connections February 14th 2:15-3:15
What are checklist?
The checklist allows the students to move through the daily, weekly, or monthly content at their own pace, place, and path. A teacher will deploy a checklist at the start of the week, and the students have a given period to complete all the required activities. This provides the students the opportunity for the teacher to meet with students in small group settings while differentiating the content. The students can then pick an choose what they would like to learn first, second, and third.
Note that all of the activities related to the learning target for the day — for example, the independent practice, digital content, and the future ready skill all tie back to the mini-lesson.
What do you mean by Future Ready Skills?
Creativity, Collaboration, Communication, Critical Thinking, and Connectedness are the future ready skills within the blended learning checklist. All of these skills are needed to be successful in college, career, and community. The extra perk is that the students will remember the content longer once they can create, collaborate, communicate, or use critical thinking skills to demonstrate an understanding of the content.
What is Digital Content?
What if the students need the mini lesson before starting on the checklist?
If you are kicking off the checklist for the week, a suggestion would be to give a quick (I mean less then ten-minute) whole group lesson to showcase the content for the week. I also recommend that teachers use the lock symbol to showcase that the students cannot start to work on the checklist until after the mini-lesson. Also, read about Ghost Groups from our previous blog post. Students can start on all of the different tasks except for the independent practice.
Are you ready to try a checklist?
We have complied sample checklist to try out in your classroom setting. Each checklist is editable through Google Docs.
Phase One Checklist
This checklist provides the students with what they need to complete each day. This is a great stepping stone from everyone rotating from one activity to the next to now allowing the students to work at their own pace but they still need to complete the daily activities by the end of class. Note that for this checklist, I used the idea of Waze to motivate the students to complete the weekly checklist. If you don't know about Waze, watch the quick video on how Waze works to inform other drivers about road hazards, traffic jams, speed traps, and so on. Click on the image below to purchase your copy of the weekly checklist for only .99
Free Phase One Checklist
If you are just getting started with checklist and Phase 1 blended learning process, click on the checklist published below on this blog. This free checklist is a great way to get started on providing stuudent ownership to the students.
Phase One Checklist Template
The below checklist works excellent for students in the lower grades. The teachers that I currently work with enjoy being able to list out the different options for the students in a daily outline. Tips for this checklist, the teachers tend to use the back side of the checklist a reflection or quick formative assessment that the students can complete throughout the week. This checklist also showcases the idea of allowing students to work on two different digital content tools within a given amount of time. Finally, I showcased the lock being used in the Future Ready Skill studio. The lock means that the students can not start that activity without the key. What's the key? A mini-lesson with the teacher.
Phase Two Checklist
A phase two checklist has less teacher control as far as what is completed each day, but the students will need to complete the checklist within a given amount of time. The students now have the opportunity to complete an activity on the checklist as long as there is not a lock or signal that they have to wait for further instructions. Click on the below checklist and start moving toward a Phase Two blended learning environment.
Weekly Phase Two Checklist Template with Planning Guide
After working with over 1,200 teachers in 2018, the checklist listed below was by far our most popular. The teachers enjoyed using the template because it planned out the week for themselves as well as the students. The students enjoyed being able to see how long they should work on a topic as well as prioritizing the different activities on the checklist. This template also includes planning pages as well as student accountability spreadsheet.
October 1st through the 5th, 2018
Wow, this was a fantastic week for blended learning coaching. The DSD Professional Development Team worked with three school districts from across the country. Below are some of the highlights and resources from each school visit, coaching sessions, and professional development workshop.
Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District
I got the pleasure of spending three days with Bertha, Sheri, and Arielle as we traveled to twelve buildings within the SMMUSD. We visited the classrooms, met with teachers, and shared out ideas on how to implement blended learning into the K-12 classroom setting. Most of the teachers were working in Phase 1 blended learning environment with aspects of Phase 2 after 26 days of school.
Key Take Aways
Create a Leader and Leave Behind:
While watching the students moving from one learning studio to the next during a Phase 1 learning environment, I noticed that sometimes the students had a hard time getting started because they did not know what to do at each learning studio. (Yes, the direction were posted at each learning studio, but the students still had a hard time understanding the process at times) My coaching tip was to generate a leader and a leave behind for each group. The role of the leader would be to read the directions to the group, help to answer questions, and make sure that everyone in the group gets started promptly. When the ten minutes is up, the group will leave one student behind to help explain the directions, process, and tips to the next group leader or group. Once the group gets the gist of the learning objective, the leave behind joins back up with his group.
Seesaw.me and Freckle.com were the big technology tools that we mentioned during the three days of instructional coaching.
Freckle.com was used frequently in the 1st through 5th grade math classrooms. The teachers were using the program in the digital content area as an adaptive technology program. The teachers then would use the data to drive the mini-lessons. Our next step with the teachers would be to develop data binders and use the freckle.com data as a tool to help set personalized learning goals for the week.
My Week in Numbers
It's that time of year again, when Twitter Chats help to connect educators from across the country as we all learn how to implement new teaching stratagies, concepts, and technology tools. Join us on Tuesday, September 18th at 9:00 EST for our first Twitter Chat of the 2018/19 school year as we explore new technology tools for the classroom, future-ready skills activities, and how to get started with blended learning. We will be giving away giftcards for flexible seating throughout the Twitter Chat.
Who to Follow on Twitter
Are you looking for educators that are on Twitter that are implementing Blended Learning? Take a look a the list below and start to follow some of these amazing blended learning educators.
How to transform the traditional classroom environment into a Phase Two blended learning classroom in 60 days.
By: Marcia Kish
What is a Sprint?
What is a Sprint? A sprint is an interval of time that focuses on three to four critical areas of change. A sprint can last for one week, two weeks, or three weeks. In the videos and photos, I will showcase a three-week sprint. Note: This is a suggested timeframe. A teacher must move through the sprints at his or her own pace and take into account how the students are reacting to the transformation process. Classroom management and organization is vital for the transformation to be successful.
The First Sprint
How to get started
Coming Soon... Sprints 2, 3, and 4
Recently, I was asked by a school district to showcase how to engage students from bell to bell in a blended learning environment. I generated a quick presentation of what a 50 minute class period would look like from the viewpoint of the students and the viewpoint of the teacher. The five-minute video will quickly explain entrance tickets, learning studios, and exit tickets that can be used in any classroom setting.
Entrance Ticket Ideas:
Independent Learning Studio
Digital Content Learning Studio
Future Ready Learning Studio
Learn more about Blended Learning, Personalized Learning, & Future Ready Skills
Often times, we forget that when the classroom teacher makes changes to the classroom pedagogy or environment that it is essential to share the "Why" with the students.
Over the last couple of months, I have been asked by a couple of school districts to generate a video about blended learning that can be shared with the students. The video below will walk the students through seven commonly asked questions that relate to blended learning.
What is blended learning?
Why does my classroom look different?
What are the learning studios?
How can I get all of the learning studios completed in a class period?
Why only ten minutes?
When can I work at my own pace?
When can we get started? Feel free to share the video with your students and parents. If you would like to learn more about blended learning, check out our other blog post, follow us on Twitter, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition to providing a quiz or an exit ticket, could the teachers allow for time to input one of the key ingredients to a future-ready classroom? Is there a way for the future ready skills of creativity, collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and connectedness to become a part of the everyday lesson? Below I have generated few ideas of how to add in future ready skills to the lessons. Feel free at that end of this blog to add in your future-ready skills or ask for help on generating ideas for an upcoming unit, lesson, or theme.
Technology tools are a dime a dozen, and there are a lot of websites that showcase technology tools that fit the SAMR model. However, "it's not about the technology tool that defines the SAMR model, but rather it's how the teacher uses the technology tool in a lesson to promote student ownership" For example watch the iPad commercial where the teacher assigns gravity for homework. The students are at the modification level of the SAMR model. By allowing them to take ownership of how they would like to present the content, the students were able to use technology to redesign the homework task.
Another point that I like to share out with the teachers is the fact the SAMR model does not have to be a ladder that you climb but instead think of the SAMR model as a swimming pool. Depending on the task, the amount of time, and the technology tool that the learner picks might move the technology integration from the shallow end to the deep end of the SAMR model.
Examples of the SAMR Model
Let's start by talking about Substitution. Using technology at the substitution stage is better than the devices staying in the cart or never leaving the student's backpack. Yes, it is true, I have been in schools that have gone 1 to 1 Mac Books or iPads and within a 45 minute class period, the students never touched their devices. For the following examples, I am going to talk about how to use the devices for taking notes.
How does substitution look in a blended learning classroom? Let's take a view of J. Moran's sixth-grade science classroom. The blended learning lesson has four main activities that the students have to travel through during the class period.
More and more teachers are moving or starting at the Augmentation stage of the SAMR model because that most schools are either using Google Suite or OneNote . Now instead of the students just typing a paper in Pages or Word, the students can type the document in Google Doc or OneNote and receive instant feedback on the paper from their peers and teachers.
What does augmentation look like in a blended learning classroom? The video below showcases two social studies classrooms working together on generating a paper that relates to a given topic along with working on projects that relate to the given theme. H. Grunenberg eighth grade social studies from Kirtland Middle School class joined up with the seventh-grade social studies classroom to complete a common themed unit.
Mini Lesson - with one of the teachers
Indepdent practice - the students are collaborating on writing a paper on a given topic
Digital Content - researching, watching, and learning more about the topic
Future Ready Skills - developing project that goes along with the given topic
Mini Lesson - with the other teacher on where they are and where they need to go next
Now we are moving above the line in the SAMR model or like what I like to talk about moving towards the deep end of the swimming pool. Modification, now allows the learner to redesign the task by using the technology in a new form. The tech tools listed below are sample note taking tools that move the outcome of a project to the modification stage.
The blended learning lesson below is an example from a ninth grade ELA classroom where I was a co-teacher. Together the teacher and I were having the students generate their own website that will turn into a portfolio of artifacts from class projects throughout the four years of high school. The students had a checklist of different learning activities that they need to complete at their own pace, place, and path that all relate to the building of the portfolio website. (The 10 minutes listed on the checklist is a suggested time frame)
According to the Eduction Technology and Mobile Learning blog post, the redefinition stage of the SAMR model the technology is transformed in a way to create new learning task otherwise not previously established. When explaining this level to educators, I often talk about breaking down the walls of the classroom through MysterySkype, Zoom, Blogs, YouTube, and even Podcast.
The blended learning example of technology being used in the redefinition level is being showcased below from the Mentor High School Fine Arts classroom by H. Ambrus. H. Ambrus is using Seesaw as a portoflio tool to show progress of artwork and then invites outside professional artist, other students, and teachers to comment on the progress of the artwork. The feedback provides students with a guide to improve upon the artwork before the final piece is posted.
I love searching and finding new technology tools that can be implemented into the future ready classroom. I am always looking for tools that promote creativity, collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and connected that students and teachers can use to showcase knowledge. The following list of technology tools are just a few of my new and old favorites tech tools for 2018.
Newsela has been one of my favorite tech tools for the last couple of years. I love the ability to change lexile level, the text sets, and the quick formative assessments.
Pear Deck is another one of my favorite tech tools that I have used for the last couple of years. I love the ability to share the slides and notes to the Google Drive, grade the assessments through Flubaroo, and allow the students to work through the slides at their own pace.
Classhub is a new tech tool that I have just started using as a classroom management tool. I like using the program while working with students in a mini-lesson. I can quickly see what the other students are doing while working on digital content, lock the screens when a student is taking a test, and send messages to the students to help them keep on task.
Sugarcane.com is a new tech tool for 2018 for me. Sugarcane is an educational game system that has preloaded games for all subject areas and the teacher can quickly create games that match a specific content subject. This is free, fun, and easy to for all grade levels.
Quickdraw is a fun vocabulary builder that is a lot like the game win, lose, or draw. The player will get a word to draw and the computer will start to guess the drawing. This is free online game that does not require any login.
Classroomscreen.com is one of my new favorite tools to share out with teachers that have a smartboard or projector in the classroom. Classroomscreen puts all of your favorite times, noise levels, directions, and whiteboard into one location. It is free, no log in, and even has an exit ticket feature that is very easy to use.
I love frontrowed.com for grades K-9. Frontrowed provides adaptive practices for ELA, Math, Social Studies, and Science. All math questions can be read outloud to the students, if a student misses a question, it will redirect them to find someone in the classroom that just got it right or will provide them with a video from learnzillion.com. The data reports provide quick differentiated groups for the future ready classroom environment.
Mysimpleshow.com is a great way to get the students to start writing out the content for a presentation before designing the backgrounds and photos. The way mysimpleshow.com works is that after the script is written, the program will find photos that match the concepts. It is that easy. I would use this program during my future ready learning activity once my students are ready to showcase what they have learned.
Classhook takes video clips from the student's favorite TV shows and creates teachable moments that are tied back to the content standards. This free program provides quick video segments that will hook the students into wanting to learn more about the content. I would use this program during part of the digital content area during my blended learning lesson plan then I would talk about the hook during the mini-lesson with the students.
Baamboozle is an educational game program that allows students to answer questions in teams to earn varied point values. This free and easy to use program would be placed in the future ready skills area as a preview to the content or as a group study session that relates to the classroom content.
listenwise.com is a great independent activity to use within the blended and future ready classroom. The students can listen and read the text, answer questions, learn key vocabulary words, and explore graphic organizers that go along with the content. This free program would work great for grades 4-12 in ELA, Science, and Social Studies. I love the current event section and tie into google classroom.
Padlet has made a come back in my book of tech tools to recommend to teachers. The voting feature, layouts, and the ability to embed the ballet into a website are just few of my favorite characteristics of the program. I would use this in my mini-lesson, independent practice reflection, during digital content as quick reflection and next step tool, and also during future ready activities as a group brain storming activity.
Autodraw.com is a free drawing tool that can be used while students are sketch noting, creating posters, need a little help with drawing figures that represent the content. I would use this during the mini lessons when the students need to take notes, during independent practice to showcase what they have learned, and even during the future ready skills as a away to build and create projects.
Build Your Wild Self
Build your wild self is a free creative avatar generator that allows students to create themselves with wings, horns, and other fun features that then can be used for a creative writing project. The students love all of the fun features of this easy to use program.
Ideas on how to use Avatar Maker
Geo Greeting brings google maps, shapes of buildings, and global connectedness together for a fun project that students can make to share out messages with each other. For example, click on this link to see mygeogreeting to you. I would use this tool during my future ready activity by allowing students to type a message, then pick a building to research. Where is the building located? What is the city demographics? How far away is that building to you? What is one new fact that you learned about that city?
Classroomq.com is a free classroom management tool that allows students to place them in the Q when they have a question or when they are ready for a checkpoint mini-lesson with the teacher. Think of this like taking a number a the deli counter.
Seesaw.me is one of the first tools that I recommend to any teacher from grades K-12+ that is planning on implementing blended learning into the classroom setting. This free tech tool will help to manage the paper work, help to keep students on task, and provides a learning portfolio that can be shared with the parents. This is on of my must haves for anyone who wants to cut down on the amount of paperwork and grading within any classroom setting.
Mentimeter.com is a free tech tool that can be used as a quick exit ticket, a vocabulary builder, a summary tool, and a brainstorming activity for group activities. I use the word cloud feature as an exit ticket out of mini-lesson and also a reflection tool once the students have finished reading a Newsela.com article.
Learn Around The World
Take your students on virtual field trips with learnaroundtheworld.com A free online program that will allow students to explore other parts of the world during the future ready activity or in mini lessons. Participate in planned events or watch virtual trips.
Rewordify, takes any article picks out the main ideas and summaries the content. I showcase this program to teachers with high ELL students or as a differentiation tools for the independent practice area. The program also provides key vocabulary words, a dictionary, and many other features for free.
For All Rubrics
ForAllRubrics provides easy to use rubrics for students and teachers along with badges that show mastery of content. I showcase forallrubrics as a classroom management tool for grading future ready skills. The program is very easy to use, and it has already broken down all common core standards from grade K-12 into rubric form.
Provide options for the students for when they build a poster to showcase their understanding of the content. I love using Smore.com as a poster generator because the student can publish the content and watch to see who visited the poster, what links they clicked on, and how long the visitor stayed on the poster. Fantastic tool for global connectedness in the future ready skills area.
Are you looking for specific tech tools by content area? Are you looking for a place to keep track of all of these tools for students? I would recommend edshelf.com. Edshelf is like a tech Pinterest board for technology tools. I like it because I can embed the tools right into Schoology, Weebly, and link them into Google Classroom. Follow my boards at www.edshelf.com/profile/blcb and see example boards below.
Quizizz.com is one of my favorite formative assessment tools because of the gamification aspect. The students can answer the questions at their pace but still compete with each other while reviewing the content. In a blended learning lesson, I would placeQuizizz.com in the independent practice section of the phase 2 checklist.
Blabberize.com is a quick and easy way for students to make something talk. That's right, turn any image into a talking avatar with the student's voice explaining the concept. In my blended learning lessons, I would place this activity in the future ready skills area. The students would create a talking blabberize that would summarize the main idea of the concept that they learned that day. The students would then place the blabberize character into Seesaw.me or a group padlet.
Toontastic can be used in grades K-12 for showcasing the understanding of any concept through the creation of a cartoon. The students can retell a story, create a story, reenact a part of history, demonstrate foundamental science concepts, and much more through this free online application. I would place Toontastic in the future ready skills area as a group project at the end or middle of a unit.
Videonot.es provides the students with the opportunity to watch a video and take notes on the concepts that are covered during the video. The notes will then be added directly to their own Google Drive as well as shared out the teacher. One of my favorite aspects of Videonot.es is the fact that all of the notes are timed stamped. The time stamp feature comes in handy when the students are studying for a test. I would use videonot.es during the digital content area of the blended learning lesson plan.
Dollar Street places families from across the country on one street. The poorest at one end and the richest at the other end. The global connected website then allows the students to explore the houses, types of toys, types of food, jobs, and much more within each household. I would use this website as a future ready activity where the students would pick one family, explore their current resources, and create something from the 3D printer to send to that family. I would then tie in economics, global locations, politics, health and wellness, and much more into my mini lessons that would relate back to the family that the students picked.
Learn more about how to implement blended learning into your classroom enviroment through the following links
Marcia Kish - Blended and Personalized Learning coach that designed the Three Phases of Blended Learning