Sharing resources is possibly one of the best ways to learn and build up a portfolio of lessons.
I know some teachers do not like to share which is understandable as sometimes you have it tailored to your class and your style of teaching.However, some teachers are fantastic at sharing resources and helping other teachers with resources and ideas.
A few website which are full of teachers who share ideas and resources which are free to download (for the most part) are as follows:
History association of Ireland
TED Talks education
Twitter – try #edchatie or #edchat (refer to my previous blog post for specific related subjects)
Since publishing this blog – this weeks #edchatie was all about sharing!
Join in with the #edchatie Kris Kindle this Monday and share your teaching tech, websites & ideas. Bring a bagful of links! #HoHoHo
Some amazing resources were shared and a huge amount of teachers and educators took part in sharing many web2.0 tools and resources. I will post the transcript to this blog when it is published tomorrow!
A web 2.0 educational resource I have yet to delve into yet (plans for the weekend is to curl up with a cup of strong coffee and delve into all these educational resources!) is Animoto!
What is Animoto?
Animoto is a cloud-based video creation service that produces video from photos, video clips, and music into video slideshows. Animoto is based in New York City with an office in San Francisco. (All credit for TNW
Sometimes it’s easier to demonstrate something that try and explain it thus keeping with the Christmas Theme let me show you an example of Animoto in action!
This image provoked many raised eyebrows. For those of you who don’t know the background to this image is of graduating students displaying how much debt they are in upon graduating from an American university. Though they may have had the best education in the world – the debt they are in is questionable.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the cost of American tuition here is a blog on the top 10 most expensive colleges in america. Source: https://blog.4tests.com/top-10-most-expensive-colleges-in-america-are-they-worth-it/
Bowka is the new craze of exercise and music combined. Though you may not have heard of Bowka, think Zumba but with numbers and letters and you have a fair idea of what Bowka is. Bowka is as physical as it get’s yet it’s meant to be simple to learn – which is why it’s starting to gain popularity. Additionally, it’s for everybody. The young, the old, the lazy, the high energy!
You will burn any calories or negative feelings you have away I have been told. Seems like a win win situation considering tonight’s #edchatie was about how do teachers cope with stress?
Not one hundred per cent sure what Bowka will bring tomorrow, but I know it won’t be dull considering it derives form boxing and kwaito – African words for a style of South African music and dance.
To give you a test of what is in store for tomorrow – here is a short clip!
While in class today – I was trying to encourage Mental Health Week and positivity in the Classroom through simple ideas.
One such idea was simply asking students to rate their homework and then simply giving themselves a smiley face or a love heart beside their work and a huge tick on the margin of their copies for trying their best . The idea worked well as the students responded very positively to the small change in the usual homework feedback.
However, the students shocked reactions and enthusiasm to this simple tasks makes me wonder when correcting homework are we so focused on the answers and responses that we fail to see the amount of work that they put into the homework?
The students response to the positive feedback has sparked my interest in regards to what are the implications of positive feedback on homework. What have scholars said?
I’m hoping to research this throughout the week and update by the end of the week. Mini research project!
If anyone has ideas or thoughts on the topic or wants to add to please do!
Update currently trawling through peer reviewed journals and shocked by the amount of research and varying opinions!
The Pop Up Cafe was a huge success with many students showing up for a cup of tea and a few biscuits. It was a good way for students to chat to teachers who were present. It was a lovely atmosphere were students got to talk to their friends while in school. There was no pressure for the students to rush through their lunch or have a test or homework hanging over them as they drank their tea!
Additionally, the seniors helped serve the tea giving the younger students a chance to chat and talk to them. This event has fostered a link between senior and juniors. Also, another positive that has come out of this is the seniors are getting a chance to reflect through their own years at school as they draw closer to closing their chapter at secondary school.
If you are planning to do a pop up cafe a few tips:
Use paper cups – clean up becomes incredibly easier
Have a biscuit or two for the students.
Have an alternative for tea.
Have it well advertised – even send out a text to the parents if this system is available in your school.
Have a small activity prepared – a good one is human bingo were students interactive with people they may not have talked to before.
Use a big space so students can move around without feeling on top of each other.
Overall I would highly encourage schools to try a Pop Up Cafe – try to keep costs minimal as well!
With mental health day just passing by I notice more and more students under stress as June starts to become a reality for most. Recently I came across a clip from a television show called Waterloo Road. This show revolves around the staff, students and the community surrounding the school. Despite the show not being an actual school – the issues that are addressed by the school are real.
The reason why the clip caught my attention was the vice-principal stating that students are under a lot of stress come exam time and should be supported and guided in how to cope with stressful situations. However, instead of the staff supporting the children one boastful member stated that kids these days receive easy exams. The vice-principal instead of getting frustrated and angry asked his staff to sit one exam and see the difficulty and stress students undergo during exam time. The majority of the staff did take the exam – however all was not what it seemed.
Upon been given their test – they teachers realised it was mock exams of other subjects which they themselves did not teach. What transpired was the staff reacted the same way students do when under huge amount of pressures. Some knuckle down and try their hardest – others had a knee-jerk reaction and wanted to leave the exam without attempting as they didn’t understand the exam.
The staff became aware of the strain and stress that students are put under after it was pointed out to them that students do undertake up to and over five subjects (and in Ireland most students take seven subjects for the Leaving Certificate).
A few things to take away from this clip is
Students have more than one subject!
Little bit at a time – if students seem overwhelmed, break it down a little bit at a time for them.
Timetable – encourage timetables for study.
Encourage students to get a full nights rest – it will make a world of difference to their mental and physical health.
Also one heart-warming story I heard recently was a phenomenal teacher who made caramel slices for stressed final year students. Maybe surprise students with a small homemade treat or a five minutes rest at the end of class might make the world of difference!