By Teachers, For Teachers
John Spencer is a man of many blogging identities. He is "Musings of a Not-So-Master Teacher" on his personal blog, "Learning with Impact" for his education-specific forum, and the orchestrator of a student blog/online social studies magazine "Social Voice." With each of his blogs, John explores the possibilities in education and different ways to tap into his students' potential. We are excited to share the insights of this not-so-master teacher who dove into teaching 2.0 and lived to tell the tale.
“Enough already! I cannot POSSIBLY become an expert in gifted education, too!” “The kids with problems need me. The smart ones will do fine on their own.” If we had a dime for every teacher who said things like this to us, we would be very wealthy. Our response is that if they invest time in understanding how giftedness and talent develop, they’ll do a better job of working with the high-ability learners in their classrooms, they’ll energize everyone, and they’ll also recharge their own professional enthusiasm. In fact, in our opinion, teachers can’t afford NOT to become experts in gifted education!
It's time to start teaching the Google way. Many software applications are released to limited audiences prior to their full public release. These pre-release versions, designed to collect information from willing end users about potential bugs, are called betas. Though some companies have caught some heat for keeping the beta tag too long, there's actually a teaching lesson to be learned from this.
Tokbox is my latest, and most fun tool! Remember when you got your first boardgame? You wanted everyone to play it and enjoy it as much as you did. This is the similar feeling I have toward Tokbox. Our town librarian pointed me to TokBox and their video messaging system, saying that she really liked how easy it was to use. I immediately registered for this free service and began sending messages and I can't wait to get everyone on board.
As a student, staring at a blank piece of paper while you’re expected to write an essay can be very intimidating, especially during timed in-class writing and standardized tests. You can put your students at ease with these simple essay prep tips. These tips will outline a simple and effective way to write a timed essay, as you might have to do for the WSAL, PSAT or SAT. This is just the tip of the essay-writing iceberg, but you can get the whole picture in my book, KISS Keep it Short and Simple.