Have you ever been to a professional development class where all you do is grade papers? Or maybe you finished quilting that blanket for your newest grandchild while the presenter talked for 6 hours.
We have all been there, done that, and we are not looking forward to the next PD session the school district thinks that we need to attend.
I agree that change has to happen with professional development. There is no need for us to sit and listen to someone talk to us for six hours on a Friday. Can the presenter send us the 100 slide PowerPoint the day before? That way he/she does not have to feel like they have to read us every word on every slide. I can read, I can skim through a power point and obtain the general concept on my own.
What if we flip professional development just like we flip the classroom? If we as educators expect our students to go home and watch a video, slideshow, or research a topic then we should be able to complete the same task.
Imagine this scenario: A second grade teacher has just been told that on Friday, instead of being able to work in her classroom, she will be attending an all day training on how to use Google Drive. Her first thought is great what is Google Drive and how am I going to use that with my second grade classrooms?
The week went on and the teacher was still dreading the Google Drive PD. However, on Thursday morning, the teacher was greeted with an email from Friday's presenter. The email provided a Prezi that explained Google Drive, examples of how to use Google Drive in the Second Grade classroom, and videos on the basic functions of Google Drive. The best part was the last few sentence at the bottom of email. It stated, "Friday's Professional Development Course will begin at 8:00 am. For those of you that read over the Prezi, go over the examples of how to use Google Drive, and complete a short assessment you will not need to show up until 10:00."
The teacher reviewed the Prezi, watched the videos, and answered the questions as soon as she got home from school that day. She showed up to the PD session at 10:00 and the facilitator was just finishing up going over the material that she reviewed the day before. The second grade teacher was able to use those two extra hours in her classroom to finish up grading, cleaning up from the week, and pulling together resources for the following week.
The innovation of the Professional Development did not stop with the flipping of the content but rather the whole PD was geared towards using the application, hands-on experience of using Google Drive, and creating lessons that implemented the online tools. The remaining four hours of the PD flew by so fast for the teacher. She was amazed and impressed with the layout of the day.
If you think that you would like to experience this type of Professional Development, sign up for one of our courses. You won't be disappointed. Click here for a list of flipped professional development course.
Project Name: Chain Effects
Grade Level: 4th Grade
Overview: The students will create a paper chain out of one piece of paper. The goal is to create the longest chain in the class.
Objectives: Students will be able to complete the following:
Time: This is at least a two day activity. Extensions can be made to extend the lesson into a three day activity. (Create charts that show mean, median, and mode of the different lengths of the paper chains. Use the individual, group, and whole class data to create three different charts)
When a school states that they are going to move to BYOD, the very first thing I show them is how to use QR Codes in the classroom. It is a great way to implement the devices into the curriculum. Below are a few ways to QR Codes in the different content areas.
1. Art- My sister is a high school art teacher. I showed her how to have the students create QR Codes for their art projects. When a student is done with their art project, they will create a QR Code that explains their picture, the artist, and what type of medium they used to complete the project. Then when she hangs the art work in the hallway, the QR Code is attached to the bottom right hand corner. (See the example QR Code Below)
2. Math- There are countless ways to use QR Codes in the math classroom. My favorite example of how I used them was with a Geometry Class. We created a scavenger hunt outside where the students had to find the QR Codes and then complete the activity that would pop up on their devices before moving onto the next Code. (See the example QR Code for Math Below)
3. Language Arts- BookReports, Character Characteristics, Setting, Plot, Themes, Book Scavenger Hunts, and so much more. Ways to use QR Codes in the language arts is just endless. Before students start to read a novel, short story, or even a news article. I will post character traits from the story around the room. A student will scan the code and then have to act out the character for the whole class. This activity gets the students up and moving, making predictions, and visually seeing the characters before they even open up the book. (Scan the LA QR Code below for an example of this activity.)
4. Science- During lab time, have the students scan the QR codes to get the next step, watch a video explanation or directions for how to write up the lab report. Another way we used QR Codes was during chemistry, we had the students create a QR Code for every element. Then place them around the room. And when the student had a free moment they would scan the QR Code review the element properties, and store the information into their phone. (See the QR Code Periodic Table below)
Click the Play button below. Make sure to click the blue speech bubble on the right to read how to use this website in the 6-12 classroom.
Over the years, I have taught teachers how to use Google Forms for Exit Tickets, Reviewing information, and for Assessments. One thing that has always been lacking was the ability to add video into the Google Form. Well, the wait is finally over. Google has now added a YouTube video button into their form choices. To add a video:
Say Goodbye to RubiStar and Hello to ForAllRubrics: While working with teachers across the State of Ohio and in Denver, I am always telling teachers that they have create and use Rubrics for all projects. Over the years, I have shown teachers how to use RubiStar. I love the fact that it was easy to create a rubric and print them out for the students to use and for the teacher to score once the project was complete.
Well from this moment on, I will be sharing ForAllRubics with the teaching staff. Some of the key features that now make this rubric generator my new favorite:
While researching ways to help stretch the conversations between students and teachers, I came across this graphic on critical thinking skills. I really like the layout. It shows the different levels of thinking while using Bloom's Taxonomy as a guide.
Level One: starts out with who, what, when, and where
Level Two: stretches the conversation to having the students retell the events
Level Three: blends in the common core with applying what was taught
Level Four: uses critical thinking skills in order to answer the question
Level Five: takes what the students already know and apply it to what they just learned.
Level Six: Students form their own opinion on the skill that was just taught
For more information check out this website: http://goo.gl/IouezI
Students can create stories using this realistic graphic application. The students don't need to draw any of the graphics. Instead, they can place the stickers and icons onto the page. The icons are easy to resize and move around the page. The students can add in their own speech bubbles to tell the story. They can even add in their own pictures for the background. Check out this app while it is still free!
Do you want to keep your students safe while they are searching the internet? Do you want to make sure it is content that they can use in class for their next book report? Then start having the student use the Rover Browser. Rover will transform the way students search and learn. It is designed to bring the best educational content to your iPad. Enhance the student's learning while using this browser.
Comic Book is on sale today for $0.99
I love using Comic Book in the classroom with my students. This app allows the students to express themselves and tell a story in a format that is less intimidating than writing out a traditional story. Fantastic app for the boy in the intermediate and high school age group.
Hands On Equations 2- A Fun Way to Learn Algebra is FREE Today!
This is an amazing algebra app! Students can watch a video on how to complete a skill, then practice the skill, and test the student on the skill that they just worked on during the lesson. The app provides a lot of graphics, rewards, and keeps track of the student's progress. Fantastic App! Get the Free Version Today before it goes back to $3.99
DSD Professional Development Coordinator