Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Padlet for Exit Tickets or Formative Assessments

Now that ALL the kids will have computers at IHS, which is just exciting all by itself, we will have an easier way to complete exit slips. One big advantage of being 1:1 is the fact that you can gather formative assessment data quickly and efficiently.

Here is one method to communicate formative assessment data. There are other uses for this app also, but I see this as being a powerful exit ticket solution. If you don't like the this Web 2.0 tool for formative assessing, no worries. Over the next several months I will be blogging about many other options.

The app is called PADLET. I used PADLET for the first time today at a DLT meeting. Mary Montgomery created a question and we answered it online.

Here is what you need to do: (Read all directions before completing the first step)

1.) Click this link: http://padlet.com/alison_sauter/40p9aoobycsi

2.) DOUBLE Click on the PADLET screen.

3.) Type your name…or make up one.

4.) Type your favorite color.

5.) Position your text box on the screen.

So that is all there is to it! Please feel free to comment below if there is another way that you think PADLET would be helpful in your classrooms.

Monday, June 2, 2014

PLN Power

PLN stands for Personal Learning Network. This is a network just for you and your needs as a professional. All of you probably have a PLN and you don't even know that you do. A PLN is very similar to a PLC except your PLN consists of people who are most likely not your coworkers. They may not even live in the same country that you do. PLNs can span across the globe and that is what makes them unique and also so useful.

If you have a PLN that means that you follow someone on FaceBook, read their blog postings, view tweets on Twitter, etc. You may even communicate to them and vice versa. These people are connected to you in some way. You learn from them, relate to them, and can gain powerful information from what they have to share.

Because I am a child of the 80s….and somewhat of a nerd…whenever I think of my PLN I think of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. Watch this opening theme from every episode and then I will describe what I mean:


 I feel like my PLN is just like this. Prince Adam is charged to protect Castle Grayskull, and he has special people and powers that make that happen. Although I am no prince, I do have the responsibility to help people connect to technology. He-Man's sword reminds me of my Twitter account because that is the first tool that I used to form my PLN. So, BY THE POWER OF TWITTER…I HAVE THE P-O-W-E-R…of a PLN.

Unlike He-Man, I don't share the secret to this PLN power. I have always advocated the use of Twitter for the classroom and for teachers. There have been a few "Cringers" that have come my way. Some teachers are terrified of establishing a PLN on Twitter, or they just don't want to use it.  Hopefully I have given them the guidance and resources over the years to create a successful PLN that they can rely on. I am also here to help YOU become part of the Twitterverse if you are interested. There are so many things you can do with your students by using this social media platform.

Most importantly, He-Man is only one man. He would not be successful without all of the help from his PLN, like Orko, Man of Arms, Shera, and the Sorceress. I truly think I would NOT be the educator that I am today without my PLN. Thankfully, they inspire me, help me, and guide me to new readings, learnings, watchings, and doings.

 Twitter also offers the use of hashtags (#) for educational chats among members. Two chats that I follow are #edchat and #edtechchat. Depending on your content area, I am sure we can find a chat for you to view and follow.

If you are interested in seeing who I follow on Twitter you can click the link below:

Click here to see who I follow on Twitter.

 Oh, one more thing….If you, like me, enjoyed He-Man growing up, I recommend a motivational site called Skeletor is Love.  You can also follow "Skeletor is Love" on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. The site has motivational quotes on pictures of scenes from He-Man. Some of them are guaranteed to make you smile, while others just make you shake your head. Enjoy!

Welcome to the Blogosphere!

My name is Ali Sauter, your T.I.C. (Technology Integration Coach) I am discovering the world of educational blogging in my new UNI grad school adventures. Blogging is a way for teachers to connect to other people and resources via cyberspace. Blogs are a great professional development tool, journal application, and communication tool to use with students, colleagues, and parents. If you are a blogger, you are connecting with some sort of community. Another acronym for this is PLN (Personal Learning Network).  The goal for my blog, 21st Century Purple & Gold, is to provide you with resources for our journey into the 1:1 environment. So, buckle up everyone! We are going to be embarking upon a wild adventure!!

 In this post I do want to highlight three educational blogs that I have started to dive into. I will explain what each blogger discusses, why I find their work interesting, what themes connect them, and why I think they are useful. Let's get started!

 Blog #1 Free Technology for Teachers by Richard Byrne

  Richard Byrne is a former high school social studies teacher turned blogger. He integrated technology into his classroom while he was a teacher, and now he blogs and speaks about technology integration at conferences. I find Richard's blog interesting because it is one of the widest resources I have found. The blog is by far my favorite resource on the Internet for technology tools in education. The tools are also FREE! (What educator doesn't like free stuff?) The tools range from applications, guides, and other resources that are system or content area specific. Not only does he cover PC, Mac, Android, and iOS, he also covers several learning content area resources like math, language, science, or social studies. 

With Richard's help, I find myself immersed in technology tools that can be used in all classrooms. Not only does he have the blog, but he also links his posts for free technology tools to Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and Pinterest. I find that these are easier ways for me to follow all of the information that he shares, but his blog is a nice place to go search out new resources.  

Blog #2 Dangerously Irrelevant by Scott McCleod

  Scott McCleod is a pioneer of K-12 technology in education. He has been instrumental in advocating  for 1:1 implementation.  I find Scott's blog very "RELEVANT" actually because he speaks of technology implementation from a leadership point of view. He is the founder of CASTLE and helps administrators and coaches stay motivated in the quest to become 21st Century leaders. Scott is a wonderful advocate for technology and 21st Century learning. I admire this about him and can relate to his philosophies. Here is a clip of Scott McCleod speaking at Ted-X Des Moines:


Blog #3 Angela Maiers, Educational Services, Inc. 

I have followed Angela on Twitter for a few years. Recently, I had the opportunity to see her present at NETA in Omaha, NE. Angela is an author, leader, and literacy advocate. I am currently reading her book Classroom Habitudes: Teaching Classroom Habits and Attitudes for 21st Century Learning.  Angela is an advocate for spreading the belief that all kids have worth and matter. I find her passion for children and learning very uplifting. Angela writes about what it takes to be a 21st Century learner and also offers great resources for technology leaders and advocates. Seeing her in person was very uplifting. Here is her Ted-X talk in Des Moines:

 All three of these bloggers are passionate about learning and technology. They are passionate about why technology integration and 21st century skills are so important. I feel very privileged  to have seen two out of the three speak at conferences. All three are on Twitter also.

All of these blogs connect technology with education, but Richard's is more about  an incredibly useful list of technology resources. Scott and Angela offer more theory and motivation with technology and education within their blogs.