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Reset the Presets
There are preset standards that most everyone accepts without a second thought. It takes extra effort to alter the defaults, so we end up trusting them. Defaults tend to work for most people, but sometimes unchecking the default opens up greater possibilities. Tony Vincent makes the case for taking the time to tinker with your standard settings and explore what can happen when you control the settings (instead of them controlling you). In addition to changing defaults, Tony explores the concepts of repurposing, working around obstacles, and hacking together innovative solutions.
Some of the best learning projects set out to make a dent in the universe. That dent might be big or small, but knowing their projects are making a difference in the world is great motivation for students to push themselves toward deeper learning. Tony Vincent is ready to share important ideas for making student projects powerful, which include making a difference, encouraging student ownership, and having an authentic audience.
Crafting Questions That Drive Projects
Not only do projects motivate students because they can be an authentic use of technology, they also facilitate active learning, critical thinking, collaboration, and creativity. In this session Tony Vincent showcases several inspiring projects. Each project begins with a driving question—an open-ended question that focuses the project by creating interest and curiosity.
Writing effective driving questions is surprisingly challenging. You want the question to be irresistible to students, which means it cannot sound like a test question. Tony Vincent gives strategies for refining driving questions that lead to student-focused inquiry. The group will write and share some of their ideas for driving questions.
Spruce Up Your Centers with Technology
The collection of activities teachers provide students at a center can be enhanced with technology, even if there’s only one computer or tablet in the classroom. Whether you use centers for reading, writing, listening, speaking, or exploration, it’s great to know about online resources that are perfect for independent and cooperative activities. Learn to leverage technology to give learning centers a boost, especially when it comes to setting the course, providing content, supporting creativity, and capturing responses. All resources are free, so you can get to retooling your learning centers right away!
Know Students Better Through Formative Assessment
Knowing students’ interests, strengths, and weaknesses help teachers adjust learning experiences for their students. Formative assessment involves the teacher collecting information about what students know, don’t know, and want to learn. It can play a part in checking for understanding, surveying background knowledge, reviewing content, and getting a general pulse of the classroom. Let’s explore and compare free feedback and formative assessment tools like GoFormative, Recap, and Quizizz. Let's also talk about what to do with the gathered information.
Draw Your Own Illustrations, Clipart & Avatars
Got a smartphone or tablet? Then you could be drawing your own illustrations, clipart, and avatars! Tony Vincent has examples to showcase and techniques to demonstrate for creating your own artwork, even if you don't consider yourself an artist. Tony's technique is based on tracing photos, so don't worry if you are embarrassed by your drawing skills. This session features the free Adobe Illustrator Draw app for iOS and Android, and the techniques can certainly be applied when using other drawing apps.
Vocabulary Comes Alive
Learning academic terms and phrases doesn’t have to be boring. In fact, learning new words should be exciting and fun! It’s time to start looking at digital ways to expand students’ vocabulary. Let’s explore apps and websites that are so irresistible, students can’t help but be motivated to learn. We’ll take a good look at representing words visually, creating multimedia, and playing games. Yes, the technology can be mesmerizing, but it’s important to use techniques and strategies proven to work. That’s why pairing technology with Robert Marzano’s Six Steps for Vocabulary Instruction is a powerful combination.
The Wonderful World of Web Widgets
Web widgets can breathe new life to a classroom site. A widget is a little bit of code you embed into a webpage or blog. Once a widget’s code is pasted into a page, it can grab updated information or display interactive content. Learn about places to find, customize, and use free embed code that displaysinformation right on your own website. Examples include daily vocabulary, educational videos, audio files, talking pictures, games, and polls. In fact, many of your favorite tools offer widgets, like Google Slides, Quizlet, Twitter, Wonderpolis, Instagram, and Adobe Voice. Your website will thank you for the fresh, new content!
We’re Live! The Ins and Outs of Live Broadcasting
With a press of a button, you can be broadcasting live video to the world. Periscope, YouTube, and Blab are three popular (and free) live streaming apps, and they are full of potential. Similar to Twitter, you choose who to follow, and you receive notifications when that person starts a broadcast. People who tune in live can type comments so that the broadcaster can interact with the audience.
Educators can jump in on broadcasts about topics like classroom management, setting up centers, or the latest apps. Teachers can step into other teachers’ classrooms and take a tour and ask questions. You might even catch live streams from conferences, workshops, and edcamps. Let’s compare the major live streaming apps, view clips from example broadcasts, discover who to follow, and brainstorm the best educational uses for live broadcasting.
Producing Powerful (and Pretty) Infopics
An infopic is a photo with text layered on top that is designed to communicate a message. Some are simple while others are enhanced with awesome photography effects. An infopic's message might be a summary, quote, definition, notes, data, weblink, or other informational tidbits. The information might come from a conference, workshop, activity, lesson, video, book, a conversation, etc. Infopics can help us process, remember, and convey information in an appealing way. See loads of examples and learn about apps, websites, and techniques that teachers and students can use for making their own infopics. Read more about infopics.
Get Creative with Google Slides and Drawings
Teachers and students can do amazing things with Google Slides and Google Drawings! The blank canvases they provide are great for being creative and for collaboration. You’ll get to see design tools and techniques in action, and Tony will share lots of helpful tips. That’s in addition to seeing an array of fantastic ways of putting Slides and Drawings to good use. Inventive ideas include publishing alphabet books, editing images, constructing timelines, creating infographics, publishing newsletters, and making narrated presentations.
Show What You Know
Nowadays teachers and students have a variety of ways to show what they know and to express themselves. Let's take a look at some of the hottest free tech tools for showing, explaining, and retelling. In fact, these tools can turn students into teachers and teachers into super-teachers! Whether you're using a laptop or an iPad, You'll get hands-on time to craft collages, audio recordings, trading cards, screencasts, animations, comics, and online books. Web-based tools and iPad apps will be presented side-by-side so that you can learn about what students can produce, no matter which technology they are using.
Making Media That Sticks
There are six principles of sticky ideas according to Dan and Chip Heath, authors of Made to Stick. Sticky ideas are ones that we can plainly understand, clearly remember, and easily retell. When teachers and students make educational media, whether visual, audio or video, we want them to be sticky. Let's look at examples so we can make our own (and our students') ideas stick.
Worth 1,000 Words: Finding and Designing Visuals
Whether you're flipping your classroom, app smashing, blogging, moviemaking, storytelling, or presenting, visuals are not just important, they are essential. Since it's not legal, ethical, or cool to steal any old image you find on the web, it's great to know that there are alternatives to theft. Let's become familiar with resources for finding copyright-friendly images, and learn some tips for designing your own visuals to illustrate your ideas.
Investigating Authentic Questions
Tony Vincent shares strategies and tips for facilitating investigation. Often investigation involves Google, which means students and teachers should understand how Google decides what to show you. Investigation also involves taking notes, which can be done on an iPad or Android tablet for safe keeping. Plus, notes don’t have to be handwritten; digital notes can be photos, screenshots, audio recording, drawings, and video. Investigation can also involve interviewing experts, collecting data, or conducting experiments. Inquiry can be messy, but Tony will demonstrate websites and apps that can help organize all those resources. This presentation is great for those already familiar with project based learning (PBL).
iPad as the Teacher's Pet
Got an iPad? Then you've got a toolbox that you can fill to help you be an even better teacher! Discover how iPad can be your handy assistant by spending time learning about apps and services that you'll wonder how you ever lived without.
This presentation is all about verbs, that is, the things an educator can do with an iPad. Those actions include showing your screen on a projector, managing the classroom, assessing student work, interacting with students, accessing your files, making instructional media, and expanding professional learning. You can accomplish those tasks with a variety of apps and websites. The workshop focuses mostly on free apps that you'll be able to put to use immediately. Those apps will turn iPad into a timer, interactive whiteboard, voice recorder, document camera, calendar, magazine, and notebook. See how iPad can help you capture learning artifacts, plan lessons, poll students, visualize concepts, share demonstrations, and much more.
Creating Products to Show & Share Learning.
Nowadays students have a variety of ways to show what they know and to express themselves. Let’s take a look at some of the hottest websites and apps for showing, explaining, and retelling. In fact, these tools can turn students into teachers and are great for sharing their answers to project-based driving questions. Tony Vincent shares examples and demonstrations of apps for making audio recordings, editing movies, creating comics, recording digital puppet shows, narrating drawings, crafting digital books, and more. You’ll also learn about ways to assess projects and the importance of reflection. This presentation is great for those already familiar with project based learning (PBL).
Bring It! Leveraging the Power of Your Mobile Device
Tablets, smartphones, laptops, and Chromebooks have ushered in new ways of doing things, and can equip teachers and students with a variety of innovative tools. Let’s explore how these handy computers can help us digitally communicate and create!. In this workshop you will learn to clone yourself by recording audio or video that can easily be posted online for students to access (and find out how to easily send students to that video using a QR code). See how quickly you can collect survey responses using a variety of free online services. Get a chance to create your very own colorful collage, elegant multimedia brochures, and snazzy digital presentations. You’ll learn through a variety of activities you can replicate in your own school. Furthermore, you will never run out of ideas when you connect with other educators through Twitter, hashtags, and Flipboard. Please bring your fully charged computer or device so that we can explore these fantastic possibilities together. You’ll surely want to put many of these tools and strategies to work right away!
Vocabulary Comes Alive with Chromebooks
Learning academic terms and phrases doesn't have to be boring. In fact, learning new words should be exciting and fun! It's time to start looking at digital ways to expand students' vocabulary. Let's explore free tools and websites that are so irresistible, students can't help but be motivated to learn. We'll take a good look at representing words visually, creating multimedia, fueling collaborative learning, and playing games. Yes, the technology can be mesmerizing, but it's important to use techniques and strategies proven to work. That's why pairing what Chromebooks can do with Robert Marzano's Six Steps for Vocabulary Instruction is a powerful combination.
Opportunities Abound for Digital Authors
Nowadays it's easier than ever for teachers and their students to be digital authors! Whether it's an eBook, website, podcast, video, comic, cartoon, or online magazine, there are online tools and services designed to give anyone a platform for publishing. Take a look at some of the hottest websites and iPad apps for creating and publishing digital work and see examples of what students have produced. Digital publishing takes many forms. Check out what youngsters have put in Apple's iBookstore. Find out how students can craft and share their own Choose Your Adventure stories. Experience how a QR code can lead a smartphone or tablet user to a narration or video. Not only can publishing online be free of charge, but it can help students produce quality work by giving them an authentic audience.
iPads in the Classroom
Engage today's students with the hottest technology around: iPad. Former teacher Tony Vincent has specialized in using mobile computers for learning for a decade, and he has useful information, strategies, tips, and ideas to share. Besides learning basic operation and care, learn apps and activities designed to improve student achievement. Participants will get loads of hands-on time and experience a variety of activities from a student's point-of-view. Examples include practicing math facts, playing educational games, vocabulary flashcards, mind mapping, and creative expression.
Do It Yourself Study Aids: Winning Websites & Apps
There are much better ways to study than gazing at a stack of flash cards. Let’s see how technology can turn studying into a game! Tony Vincent has collected some of the best websites to help students learn and retain information. Websites like ClassTools.net and PurposeGames.com let students customize what they want to study and turn it into a series of activities and games. After playing some sample games from various websites, you’ll see why when students make their own study aids, it aids their studying!
The More You Know
Information is power! What was once limited to paper has gone digital. Now teachers can send announcements, survey their classes, offer exit tickets, track behavior, and assess students with a variety of innovative and free online tools.
While most of the tools require students to have some sort device that can connect to the internet, there are some that work when students have no technology at all—they work by digitizing and grading what students have done on paper!
Bring your laptop and a tablet or smartphone so you can assume the role of a student to receive text announcements, submit answers, contribute to a word cloud, and participate in game-based classroom response systems. After you have the student experience, you’ll learn the ins and outs of the tools so that you can use them with your students. You’ll surely want to put many of these tools to work right away in your classroom!
Google Forms and Sheets: Teaching Just Got Easier
Collect information, homework, and exit tickets with Google Forms. Forms is part of Google Drive, and educators love how a form’s responses feed directly into a spreadsheet for easy access and analysis. You don’t have to start your forms and spreadsheets from scratch because there are useful templates and helpful add-ons. Teachers can create assessments, surveys, checkout forms, and self-grading quizzes. Administrators can poll their staff, collect information from parents, and keep logs. Bring your laptop so you can complete sample forms and make some of your own.
Personal Productivity Powered by Technology
As a busy school leader, you receive dozens of emails a day, deal with scheduling meetings, and have an endless to-do list. Never fear! There are tools, apps, and strategies to help you keep your head above water by helping you stay organized and connected. Productivity is described by guru David Allen as “advanced common sense,” and by applying some simple strategies, you can unclutter your inbox, browse the web more efficiently, keep a centralized to-do list, manage voicemails, and much more.
Nowadays many of us carry mobile devices like a smartphone or iPad, keep a digital calendar, and work from multiple computers. Chances are you feel like a slave to email, having hundreds of messages in your inbox. You probably spend a lot of time online and might have trouble managing all of your files among your devices. Instead of blaming technology, let's use that technology to make you more productive.
The heart of many of our problems is our email inbox. Much time will be spent learning how to spring clean your inbox and keep it that way. Other topics include keeping to-do lists, managing memos, improving meetings, boosting web browsing, and dealing with voicemail.
Awe Your Audience: Presentation Tips
Wow your students and colleauges with compelling presentation techniques! Tony Vincent shares his insights on making memorable and effective presentations. He covers his presentation philosophy, Keynote and/or PowerPoint software features, slide design, handout advice, and much more. You'll leave empowered and excited to make your next presentation!
Move Over Spiral Notebooks: iPads for Exceptional Note Taking
Taking notes isn’t limited to putting pencil to paper and writing in outline form. There are plenty of other ways to take notes, especially when a student is equipped with an iPad. An iPad can help learners capture, organize, store, find, and share their notes. And those notes can be a combination of typed text, handwriting, photos, drawings, flowcharts, audio, and video. Let’s explore apps that can enable learners to capture and process information in ways that make sense for them. We’ll compare some of the most useful note taking apps for iPad, including Evernote, Notability, AudioNote, Skitch, and Pic Collage. In addition to apps, we’ll discuss keyboards, styluses, and cases that can help turn an iPad in a super duper digital notebook.
Make Marvelous Movies
Today it's possible to film, edit, and publish movies all on a mobile device. There’s no more importing video into a computer, and apps are making the process easier than ever! See a demonstration and examples of how to create excellent educational films by using a variety of apps to film, edit, enhance, and publish videos. Learn about tips and tricks for helping students memorize lines, improving sound quality, changing camera angles, improving lighting, and much more. We’ll even produce a short film together!
What Technology Can Do for Students & Teachers
Using technology no longer requires sitting at a desk. Laptops, tablets, phones, and the “cloud” have made us mobile. Students and teachers have a wide-range of tools to help them be creative and productive, and technology is more accessible than ever. Every individual is different, so it’s great to know that there’s such a large variety of websites and apps that can amplify our interests and help us reach our goals. Technology can engage and empower students in classrooms, and that same technology might help develop an individual’s transition plan. Let’s take a look at websites and apps that can help with college, careers, and adult living–technology that can help us make the most of our strengths and support our needs.
Check out the gadgets and gizmos Tony uses to be creative and productive!