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Showing posts from July, 2017

My Leadership Journey: The Secret of Cutting Through Rock with Water

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My recent journey to interview 50 leaders in a year has taught me the power of persistence. One of my mentors has been extremely helpful in getting me in contact with some great leaders. Many of these individuals have busy schedules and other priories, which makes scheduling interviews very difficult. Most of the leaders whom I have interviewed have graciously invested their time in my journey. One leader in particular was very difficult to reach. Every time that I contacted this leader, they would tell me to call back later because they were too busy. I contacted this individual three different times. Finally my persistence paid off with an interview. Although this individual was very difficult to work with, they taught me a valuable lesson. Leaders who are persistent are very effective. Why? They practice follow through, efficiency, practice accountability, and are very goal-oriented. Persistence requires strength and courage because it often means facing fear and resistance. P

BibMe Makes Bibliographies Easy

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If you or your students write papers, then you know that creating citations and references are extremely important. I have always loved Citation Machine , but I just found a new tool that I really like. It is called Bib Me . Although it has been around for some time, I recently found it. I like it for several reasons. First, it has a very simplistic interface, which makes creating a bibliography extremely useful. For example, you can just copy and paste the URL, title, or ISBN of your resource and EasyBib can generate a bibliography. If you have more sources to add, you can keep adding to it and then download! Secondly, the source has a variety of tools to help with the writing process. For example, Bib Me has citation guides to help with citing a specific type of resource. Bib Me also has a plagiarism checker and tutorials. Finally, it is free! You don't have to jump through hoops to use it, such as watching videos or only being able to generate a limited number of c

Take a Dive with Google Underwater Street View

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Exploring the deep underwater confines of the world's oceans used to be a place reserved for the elite few; however, Google Underwater Street View opens up a new world of possibilities for students and teachers alike. Simply visit  www.google.com/maps/streetview/#oceans  to go on a virtual dive of some of the most famous underwater places and life forms on earth. Google Underwater Street View provides you with the opportunity to explore reefs, life forms, wreckage sites, and see the impact of climate change.

Choose Your Weapon: 5 Strategies for Unleashing The Power of Perspective in Leadership

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My career started as a teacher, which came natural to me. I was highly encouraged to pursue leadership positions within the organization because I was viewed as a "natural leader" by my administrators and peers. Several years later, I confidently applied for a leadership position. Instead, I was greeted by comments about my lack of experience and worth as an educator. It was frustrating to be discouraged by some of the very people who were supposed to encourage, mentor, and help me. In hind sight, I now realize that this was an opportunity to see my true passion - educational technology. I made the transition into a formal educational technology position about four years ago and have survived through a parade of four different bosses. Each time the director position became available, I was passed up for a variety of reasons. It has been difficult to stay positive and motivated after so many different disappointments; however, this leadership journey of interviewing 50 l

3 New Google Form Features!

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Google Forms just recently launched several new features to make it even more amazing! Here are three of my favorite new features in Google Forms: 1. Preferences Google Forms now has a Preferences feature to make changes to all future Forms, such as collecting email addresses, making all questions required, and even the default point value for quizzes! 2. Multiple Checkbox Grid The Multiple Checkbox Grid is the perfect type of question if you need to get multiple answers, such as the best time or date to attend a meeting. There is an additional feature to require a response in each row. 3. File Upload  File Upload has been a feature for G Suite Schools for several months; however, Google recently launched File Upload across domains. I'll let Google explain this one:  " To guarantee you get the information you need, we’ll now allow users outside of your domain to  upload files  as responses to your questions—provided both of your organizations  a

Solidify Learning with The Interactive Periodic Table of Elements

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If you are a seasoned teacher, then you have heard the infamous question "when am I ever going to use this?" In my opinion, students should be asking this question. It is often our job to provide students with authentic and real-life examples. The Interactive Periodic Table by Keith Enevoldsen is an excellent example of a tool that is both engaging and authentic. Just click on each element to see interactive components, such as a visual, real-life examples, facts, and terminology associated with the element. This interactive tool is a great way to represent content differently. Click this link to check out the Interactive Periodic Table. 

Use Spiral to Assess Students on a Whole New Level

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It always amazes me how classroom technologies are changing the instructional process. There are a variety of tools available to teachers to help students understand and interact with content, provide timely feedback, and engage students differently. If you are a fan of NearPod, then you will love a similar tool called Spiral. Spiral is a powerful formative assessment tool, which is very similar to programs like NearPod and Socrative. Teachers can create a free account on  Spiral's website . You can link your social media or Google account to Spiral. Students need to visit  gospiral.ac , join your class through a code, and provide their name. Once you login to Spiral, you will be able to access your dashboard with a variety of options: Quickfire - the perfect way to ask a question on the fly. For example, if you asked a verbal question, you can have your students respond in an open-ended way. You can mark the response correct or have students improve their response!