Free Technology for Teachers: 5 Email Etiquette Tips for Students – Some for Teachers Too

The article below contains a friendly and fun info video about email etiquette for students. Almost more interesting though is the presentation software they used, powtoon. A cursory look does not reveal any iOS platforms however, but perhaps it works online on the iPad? Yes! Stay tuned for a more in depth review of Powtoon!

Source: www.freetech4teachers.com

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In Honour of Career Day: Only Those Who Dare – Motivating Kids To Think Like Entrepreneurs

I love this idea. More and more I am interested in incorporating futurist (as in envisioning a better future) into the thinking of our students.  Even in our own adult thinking- we so often get bogged down with everything that is wrong with our world instead of trying to imagine/invent/design models/prototypes/systems to better them.From something as simple as the no-spill cup for Parkinson’s patients illustrated in the article, as designing a more inclusive, less misogynist society, thinking outside the proverbial box is as important as ever.

Innovative design crosses over all aspects of education. The American Society for Innovation Design in Education, or ASIDE, seeks to infuse curriculum with new approaches to teaching and thinking. Integrating the design of information into the daily conversation is an essential part of the teacher’s toolkit and the purpose of the ASIDE blog. The underpinning of innovation and educational design is based on looking at the information available and communicating meaning for a world of learners. Thinking like a designer can transform the way children learn. ASIDE’s goal is to bring together as much information, resources and supportive scholarship in one place for teaching and learning.

Source: theasideblog.blogspot.ca

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Privacy Pitfalls as Education Apps Spread Haphazardly

Those apps that we download, get our students to sign up for and use – how much do we know about their security? About how they use the student data?The article below highlights an issue  we have not thought about before as we try to keep up with the massive potential as well as challenges that integrating technology in a mindful way poses.

When reading about the big school boards in the U.S. (who actually have someone called the Chief Technology Officer for the districts) and how they are trying to get a handle on teachers using un-vetted apps in the classroom (as the app companies are marketing directly to the teachers, often offering their product for free at the beginning), it occurs to me that the challenge will be how to foster an atmosphere of open, spontaneous exploration while still keeping student privacy and safety in the foreground. I can see how a top-heavy vetting process could get cumbersome and be a deterrent for teachers who are already reticent to use the technology.

Or perhaps we could demand the onus of privacy and safety be put squarely on the educational software companies- perhaps they cannot call themselves an educational app without meeting certain criteria in the realm of data security?

Any ideas? This will definitely go on the agenda of our next IT meeting.

Apps and other software can put powerful teaching tools at teachers’ fingertips, but concerns abound over data security, effectiveness and marketing.

Source: www.nytimes.com

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RASPBERRY PI: AN OVERVIEW

For those of you who were intrigued by the mention by our WOW speaker, Wanda Bedard from the 60 Million Girls Foundation, of the use of Rasberry Pi technology as a portable digital library for schools in developing countries (which, OMG so fantastic and innovative!), here is a brief overview of what it actually is and how other people are using it.

As technologies like Internet of Things (IoT) and wearable tech are evolving in the present day scenario, Open Source technologies are playing a key role in the evolution of such technologies….

Source: www.musemalady.com

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Fair Use for the Visual Arts

With all our recent talk about best practices in attributing images in our visual presentations, this publication from the College Art Association is especially prescient, especially this section on teaching art.

The Center for Social Media showcases and analyzes media for public knowledge and action—media made by, for, and with publics to address the problems that they share. We pay particular attention to the evolution of documentary film and video in a digital era. With research, public events, and convenings, we explore the fast-changing environment for public media.

Source: cmsimpact.org

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Digital Bytes | Common Sense Media

Hmmm. This is worth a closer look. I know that Commen Sense media has some amazing lesson plans for within the class. It looks like these offerings are more student-led (air at least students can access and do them on their own) and shorter. It might be another tool to keep the Digital Citizenship conversation on line.

Also, I learned a new word: slacktivist. I think you can guess what that means (online petition signing, anyone?)

Here is a quick video tutorial:

Common Sense Media improves the lives of kids and families by providing independent reviews, age ratings, & other information about all types of media.

Source: www.commonsensemedia.org

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‘We want to talk about sex’: Grade 8 girls push for Ontario sex-ed reforms to include the concept of consent

This caught my eye last week as I have been thinking about how to balance the need to keep our daughters safe online with the need for them to be able to have a voice online. This shouldn’t be a problem, right? The internet has the potential for being a democratic, inclusive space. And yet…As the events of the last year have shown  (Gamergate, the Dalhousie debacle, and the list goes on…) there is an increasing need to educate our youth about consent. The fact that this push is coming from two teenagers is akin to being bashed on the head with a mallet. here is just a small excerpt of the journalist’s interview with the two teens:

Kathleen Wynne used the words “interpersonal ability and intelligence.” What does that mean?

Valente: It’s learning how to read people, which is important. People think it’s common sense but you can’t necessarily tell if someone is completely comfortable. They should talk about it in schools: facial expressions and what they mean connected to emotions. And body language: What it means when someone’s shoulders are stiff when you’re hugging them. It’s about developing good relationships.

I have shivers. Oh, and a renewed hope for the fate of humanity…

As Ontario plans an update of its outdated sexual-education curriculum, a pair of 13-year-olds want to make sure their lessons will include the concept of consent

Source: www.theglobeandmail.com

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