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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Teachable Moments: The Power of a PLN

Well, it's a whopping 63 degrees here at my house with plans for it to get up to 74! Gotta keep hoping for that warm summer weather - although, with no air condition I should be careful what I wish for up here in the Pacific Northwest. Nonetheless, the enjoyable weather has been perfect for some reading. I thought you all might like to dive into some good material as well!

Since I focused on how teachers can continue to grow and learn this summer using Twitter last week, I thought I would highlight some of the articles and neat finds from my first adventures in the world of Twitter. Below you will find 5 of my favorite resource finds that I discovered thanks to all the members of my PLN (professional learning network).


  • 11 Chrome Extensions Every Smart Teacher Loves to Use: If you're a Google fan like me, than your browser of choice is Google Chrome. These extensions add a whole new level of productivity to what I already consider to be an ideal browser. I am looking forward to seeing how they will continue to increase my ease of access and organization when the school year starts back up.
  • 6 Ideas for Teaching Digital Reputation: Alright, this might not be necessarily helpful for us early childhood educators within the classroom...but, I loved getting a look at how some of the social media and Web 2.0 tools that aren't a perfect fit for young learners are being harnessed to create amazing learning experiences for older students! I wish I could've participated in some of these assignments as a student.
  • EDpuzzle: This cool new tool will transform not only some of the professional development sessions I will be offering this summer, but will lead to some really neat and engaging multimedia activities in the classroom. Be sure to watch the demo video and set-up your own account so you are ready to go when the school year comes around. You might even consider getting some videos set up during the Summer break.
  • ISTE 2014 Session Notes: Now, this one is a doozy! It is a collection of all the notes that attendees of ISTE 2014 were willing to share publicly with those that did and did not attend. I find it rather powerful that so many people were willing to share their take-a-aways from the conference with others to provide a comprehensive overview of one of ed tech's largest gatherings. The notes are organized by category, so look for a topic that interests you and get reading!
  • International Dot Day Club: Well, this one is perfect for early learners and captures the themes of global collaboration and creativity - both which I have featured separately through teachable moments and free resources! This unique project sounds like a great way to get your school year off to the right start from so many different perspectives...it could take the form of a geometry lesson, social-emotional discussion, differentiation explanation, basic tech skills introduction (using Paint or FreeDraw on the computer), and so much more!
While these resources may not share a consistent classroom theme, they are all resources I discovered through my PLN via Twitter...and these are only 5 of the multitude of resources that were shared out! I will try and highlight some more thematic collections of resources in the future, but for now my main goal was to showcase the power of my professional learning network. Now, it's your turn to give it a try, I promise you won't be disappointed!