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Opinion


Keep FETC Alive Year Round with Social Media

FETC can be an exhilarating, instructive, insightful, hectic experience that is hard to duplicate once you get home. However, thanks to social media, there are ways to keep in touch with peers you meet there and continue the professional development that has begun.

Expert Teachers: Building Knowledge Versus Conveying Information

Teachers who are pressured into transferring information to students at a rate that supports test taking rather than knowledge building face considerable challenges. Not only does the system itself not support this approach, there are others risks to face.

Mobile Learning: It's Not Just About the Kids; It's Also About the Teachers!

So teachers are told to use computers (laptops, iPad--it doesn’t matter) in a curriculum that was made for pencil-and-paper learning activities. So teachers are given a Learning Management System that makes it harder for them, rather than easier, to deal with student artifacts. What’s wrong with this picture?!?!

Designing a Working Space for Chat

In the first installment this two-part series, we looked at chat as an instructional tool in general terms. Now we take a look at some of the major concepts in using chat effectively in the process of moving the thinking process forward: building ideas, constructing media, and establishing which elements are critical to making the environment dynamic and relevant to the student.

Common Core Technological Standards: They Are the Tail, Not the Dog

Up to now, test makers have been the dog--and education has been the tail. But the test makers are increasingly out of touch with students who use mobile devices for everything including learning. The dog is, finally & rightfully so, becoming the tail.

Instant Web Access? 'Fancy' That

The notion that technology is abundant in schools is pervasive. The reality is, most teachers are not able to summon a PC for every student for research and online tutorials, or look online at their convenience for the best textbooks, projects, and approaches.

Survival Tips for the New School Year

The start of any school year can be very stressful for a building- or district-level technology director. To deal with the pressure, here are a few tips to help you get through the first few weeks. Some of these suggestions are too late to implement this year; however, it’s never too early to start planning ahead for next year.

Making the Leap to Interactive Whiteboards

Interactive whiteboards are replacing chalkboards in many districts across the country. Could your district be next? You better hope so.

Long Odds, Short Fuses

Following last month's unprecedented massacre at Virginia Tech, security has, once again, temporarily moved to the top of the policy agenda in schools. As educators, parents, school staff, and concerned human beings in general, we all want to provide the absolute safest environment possible for the children in our care. Incidents of violence on college and school campuses remind us of our vulnerabilities. Couple this feeling of vulnerability with major media coverage, and we wind up with pressures both internal and external pushing administrators into immediate action.

Web 2.0 in Instruction: Adding Spice to Math Education

Math education has not kept up with technology--especially with Web 2.0 tools, which have the potential to transform and expand learning beyond the classroom and into kids' social and recreational lives. What can be done, and what free resources are available to educators to help make a transition possible?

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