Digital Doors was created as a place for me to blog and share resources that I think would be helpful for teachers integrating technology in meaningful ways in their classroom. My goal would be to write a blog post a week, but with my busy schedule, that doesn't happen. I write when I can and rely on nifty tools to help me share what I am finding when I don't have time to write.

Friday, March 25, 2011

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Digital Literacy News March 25, 2011

Mount Vernon Digital Literacy News

March 25, 2011
Digital Literacy Workshop

Monday, March 28,
Quick and Easy Digital Story Telling Ideas.  We will share some simple ideas for going digital with student and class stories and reports.  These ideas can be done in a one computer classroom working with your current curriculum.

Upcoming Digital Literacy Workshop:  Open Lab
Monday, April 11,
No Workshop: But there will be an open lab.  You are welcome to come and work on projects and get help with tech and integration questions.

Monday, April 18,
Using video in the classroom.

See a schedule for the year.

Open Lab: 2:30 - 5:00

Resource Instruction: 3:15 - 4:00
Monday Afternoons, District Office Tech Lab.

Clock  Hours are available.

Links to Explore

Talking History : New audio broadcast each week sharing a moment in history.  Great ways to start conversations. : Another neat tool to use for online brainstorming and organization of ideas.

Maplandia: A list of cool places to visit in Google Earth

Web 2.0 For Today’s Teachers:  Lots of great resources shared, using lots of other neat resources.  

Into the Book:  Great site for comprehension strategies in primary grades.

CNN Student News:  Quick recap of news.  Good discussion starter

Japan Resources:  A list of resources from Larry Ferlazzo..
3Rs and 4Cs

The Day The Earth Will Stand Stillphoto © 2007 Mykl Roventine | more info (via: Wylio)
I remember it well. From a high rise apartment building looking out over the huge city of Bangkok, Erik and I rang in the new year watching to see what would happen with Y2K and wondering what the new century would bring.   The fireworks went off, the lights stayed on and life kept coming.  That was over eleven years ago and in many ways, we are still talking about the 21st Century as if it is something we are still preparing for, as if it is still out there in the future.  But the reality is, we are already over a tenth of the way  through the 21st Century.   How are we meeting the needs and challenges of teaching in the 21st Century now that we are firmly planted in the 21st Century?

There is much talk about 21st Century Skills and the importance of preparing our students for the quickly changing world that we now live in.  Some of these 21st Century skills, known as  the 4Cs are added to our traditional 3Rs to enhance education and prepare our students to participate in a global community.  

The 4 Cs are Critical Thinking and Problem Solving, Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity and Innovation.  Although often considered “21st Century Skills” and often paired with technology, there is nothing new about these skills or about their importance in effective education.  Helping students develop these skills has always led to a better educated students who are more prepared for the world around  them.  The difference now seems to be about priorities.  The 4Cs have now taken priority over some of the more “rote” skills that were priority in the past.  Computers can do our rote thinking for us. If you can Google it, do you really need to hire someone to do it? We need innovators, problem solvers, communicators, creators, and collaborators to be successful in the present and in our future.  These skills need to explicitly taught and practiced just like the 3Rs and in fact, in alignment with the 3Rs.  Our focus in Reading, Math and Writing as well as other core subjects should be to grow students who can think, communicate, collaborate and create.  

I plan to focus on these 4Cs and how teachers can work to align these skills with the 3Rs in my next several blog posts.  I would love to hear ideas from you about how you are helping prepare your students to be successful global citizens.

Video of the Week

Creativity in the Classroom:

Tech Triumphs

Greg Doud, Social Studies teacher at LaVenture is one of our star innovators.  Greg is always trying out new ideas and technology with his students.  He has great skill in aligning the tech with the learning objectives.  His latest adventure has been in podcasting.  Greg is using an online (free) program called Aviary to have his students create Presidential Podcasts.  Check out his wiki here.  We are having some trouble with the embedded player, but in the mean time, if you open in Aviary you can play it through the video editor.  (This will give you a chance to explore Aviary.)  Here is a sample of the many podcast available on his site.

Digital Citizenship

I like that this video shares so many positive uses for technology but still encourages kids to be safe online.  Nice one to share with younger students.

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