Valentine’s Educational Activities!

Valentine’s Day is here! 

I have located a few fun and easy educational Valentine’s activities to do today! Thanks to these inspirational websites click on the links below to go to each project and free printables!

1. Follow Your Heart Maze by Mr. Printables
2. Heart Garland by My Plum Pudding
3. Valentine Hearts-Letter Match Game by Makes and Takes

Great website for learning letter recognition and CVC words: http://www.readingconfetti.com/2014/01/alphabet-treasure-hunt-for-valentines.html

30 Incredible Ways in how Technology will Change the Face of Education by 2028

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Read this on an EduTechnology site- rather interesting and scary all in one:

Technology is changing at a rapid pace, so much so that it’s challenging to grasp.

While there is little uniformity in technology, there are some trends worth noting that have spurred tangent innovation, including speed (a shift from dial-up top broad band), size (from huge computers to small handheld devices), and connectivity (through always-on apps and social media).

In fact, we have some to expect nearly instant obsolescence—smartphone contracts that last a mere 24 months seem like ages. Whether this is a matter of trend or function is a matter of perspective, but it’s true that technology is changing—and not just as a matter of power, but tone.

In 2013, technology has become not just a tool, but a standard and matter of credibility. While learning by no means requires technology, to design learning without technology is an exercise in spite—proving a point at the cost of potential. And it’s difficult to forget how new this is.

Fifteen years ago, a current high school sophomore was born.

So was Google.

It’s hard to recall what life was life before Google. In that 15 years, it has gone from a way to search the mess of web pages with your Netscape browser, to a ubiquitous digital brand that powers Android smartphones, hosts not just videos but full-on learning channels, stores all of your personal communication in the cloud, has leap-frogged Skype with Google+ Hangouts, and autocompletes your searches for you in an eerie kind of hive-mind. Oh, and Google Street View, virtual museum tours, and the most powerful way to find information known to man. 

In 15 years.

What happens to technology in the next 15 years may not simply impact learning in a typical cause-effect relationship. Rather, it might be the case that one absorbs the other, where information access, socializing ideas, and creative collaboration may be organic and completely invisible.

2014

Smarter MOOCs slowly correct the crude whenever, wherever models of the past, beginning to improve the credibility of eLearning.

Improved blended learning models provide schools struggling to justify themselves in light of modern access to information with new options—and a new purpose.

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2015

Adaptive computer-based testing slowly begins to replace one-size-fits-all assessment of academic proficiency.

Learning simulations begin to replace direct instruction.

Game-Based Learning continues to be sparsely adopted, primarily used in project-based learning units and occurring on mobile devices with limited interactive inputs and screenspace that compromise game-based learning’s potential.

Apps will continue to supplement textbooks in some districts, replace them in others.

2018

Technology to promote early literacy habits is seeded by venture capitalists. This is the start of new government programs that start farming out literacy and educational programs to start-ups, entrepreneurs, app developers, and other private sector innovators.

Digital literacy begins to outpace academic literacy in some fringe classrooms.

Custom multimedia content is available as the private sectors create custom iTunesU courses, YouTube channels, and other holding areas for content that accurately responds to learner needs.

Improved tools for measuring text complexity emerge, available through the camera feature of a mobile device, among other possibilities.

Open Source learning models will grow faster than those closed, serving as a hotbed for innovation in learning.

Purely academic standards, such as the Common Core movement in the United States, will begin to decline. As educators seek curriculum based not on content, but on the ability to interact, self-direct, and learn, institutionally-centered artifacts of old-age academia will lose credibility.

Visual data will replace numerical data as schools struggle to communicate learning results to disenfranchised family and community members.

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2020

Cloud-Based Education will be the rule, not the exception. This will start simply, with better aggregation of student metrics, more efficient data sharing, and more visual assessment results.

Seamless peer-to-peer and school-to-school collaboration begins to appear in some districts.

Schools function as think-tanks to address local and global challenges such as clean water, broadband access, human trafficking, and religious intolerance.

Diverse learning forms begin to supplement school—both inside , including entrepreneurial learning, invisible learning, question-based learning, and open source learning.

Self-Directed Learning studios and other alternative methods of formal education for families.

2024

“Culture” will no longer be “integrated into units,” but embedded into social learning experiences, including poverty, race, language, and other trademarks of what it means to be human.

Dialogic learning through digital media will have learners responding to peers, mentors, families, and experts in a socially-embraced collaborative pattern.

Learning simulations begin to replace teachers in some eLearning-based learning environments.

Truly mobile learning will support not just moving from one side of the classroom to another, but from a learning studio to a community, whether physically or through a Google+ or Skype-like technology.

Personalized learning algorithms will be the de facto standard in schools that continue the traditional academic learning approach.

The daily transition from eLearning and face-to-face learning will more elegant, but still a challenge for many districts and states, especially those with considerable economic deficits. Among other changes, this will create minor “migratory ripples” as families move in response to educational disparity.

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2028

Biometrics—the feedback of biological responses include sweat gland stimulation, heart rate, eye position, and other data–will provide real-time learning feedback not just for educators, but for-profit organizations for the purpose of analytics, market research, and ultimately consumerism.

Learning simulations begin to replace teachers, and some schools.

Diverse learning forms begin to replace school just as the old-model of content–>curriculum–>data–>personalized academic learning is honed to perfection.

Schools as we know them will now be outnumbered, no longer just supplemented by eLearning, blended learning, and self-directed learning platforms, but incredible learning simulations and full-on virtual worlds.

Remaining schools that refuse to adapt to new technology and cultural trends will cause splintering in some communities as the significant cost of technology integration increases socio-economic gaps.

Seamless Heads-Up Displays will equip learners with information, feedback of performance, and social data in real-time.

New certificates of achievement and performance that are social, portfolio-based, and self-selected will begin to replace institutional certificates, including college degrees.

What does assessment look like in your classroom?

Recently, I’ve been reading about the different forms of assessment that teachers are asked to carry out. From here, I have been reflecting on what assessment means to me as a future educator.

I believe that assessment is “the process of identifying gathering and interpreting information about students’ learning. The central purpose being to provide information on student progress and set the direction for ongoing teaching/learning.”

FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT

The main purpose of formative assessment is to shape teaching/learning, to enable educators to ascertain students’ current understandings and to monitor progress against learning goals.

Examples of Formative assessment techniques:

Specific, targeted goal setting. Student goals are recorded in the front of their exercise books or on cards that can be referred to during lessons.

Self and Peer Assessment. Students consider two positives and one area for improvement in a piece of work, this could be a taken a step further to encompass the Think/Pair/Share technique.

Student Reflection Journals. Student reflection on their learning, whether on paper or in digital form such as a blog post, is a great way to monitor understanding.

DIAGNOSTIC ASSESSMENT

The main purpose of diagnostic assessment is to identify cognitive, social, emotional and physical needs and to draw on students’ prior knowledge.

SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT

The main purpose of summative assessment is to evaluate resources and teaching strategies.

Examples of Summative assessment techniques:

• National Testing

• End of Unit Tests

• Rich Assessment Tasks (particularly in Mathematics)

• Rubrics, with criteria contributed by students

• Physical samples of student work and digital examples, collected and collated evidence of student understandings to assess against learning objectives.

What I’m really interested in is the different ways that teachers collect, collate and use the assessment data they have. This way of thinking is cleverly encapsulated in the WHERETO anagram for Quality Teaching.

W- Ensure that students understand WHERE the unit is headed and WHY.

H- HOOK students in the beginning and HOLD their attention throughout.

E- EQUIP students with the necessary experiences, tools and knowledge.

R- Provide students with numerous opportunities to RETHINK big ideas, REFLECT on progress, and REVISE their work.

E- Build on opportunities for students to EVALUATE progress and self-assess.

T- Be TAILORED to reflect individual talents, interests, styles and needs.

O- Be ORGANISED to optimise deep understanding as opposed to superficial coverage.

Can Students Benefit From Using Social Media?

Many students love to blog, Facebook, Twitter and skype one another. Some radical educators have come up with the idea that students may actually benefit from using social media.

Through interactive means students are learning a new form of communication and a world where they can form an extensive array of connections.


However, what exactly is it that they are learning? Read on to find out…..

Connections
Social media networks are designed for the purpose of communal connections. Today’s students are accessing Facebook, Twitter and even Instagram to connect and share with those around them. One of the most interesting things about social media is that users can interact and engage with each other solely through a Web presence, perhaps never even meeting in person.

(This offers a great advantage in teaching students about another culture and to even act as E-pals).

Engagement
Whether they are sharing personal pictures, links to other sites or even commenting on someone’s post, students engage, stretching beyond social interaction purposes alone. Students use social media day in and day out to interact with their peers and even teachers about class-related subjects. In a world where online engagement is important for businesses, these students are becoming experts at developing a sense of Internet presence. Not only do they know how to interact with others on the internet, they know how to use basic and even complex functions in order to do so.

(Another great idea in developing self and allowing freedom of expression- this could even be taken a step further to allow the students to create their own blogs about what they have learnt or completed within the course of the day).

As technology advances, so does the way the world works with it. Both teachers and students need to be aware of the changes and utilize it to its fullest potential to reap the benefits.