ISTE19 in Philadelphia has come and gone, but our team is still engaged in invigorating conversations as we process and share the awesome learning that occurred at the conference! Here are some of our learners' top takeaways.
As an educator, could you ever imagine requesting one of your students who wears prescription glasses to remove them during guided reading instruction? A more absurd scenario might be requiring a student who uses a wheelchair for mobility to attend second-floor classes in a building with no elevator. These are examples of visible disabilities that are easy to recognize, and it is straightforward to address the student's needs. However, there are many hidden disabilities of equal magnitude that hinder student learning and are often undiagnosed. To have an invisible disability means that there is more to the student’s educational struggle than meets the eye.
Have teachers ever been asked to do more? They're simultaneously responsible for providing engaging instruction on academic standards, helping students navigate complex social-emotional challenges, and serving as community leaders inside and outside of school. In this demanding environment, any solution that saves teachers time is worthwhile, even more so if it also improves learning outcomes.
As I’m sure you are aware, cybersecurity is increasingly becoming a priority for the Indiana Department of Education. In fact, technology directors are now being asked to evaluate their schools in the following areas (on their annual technology plan)...
Five-Star Technology Solutions is proud to be a Google for Education partner! Our integration team works with teachers from across the country, helping them implement CS First in their classrooms. We love meeting teachers and learning about how they incorporate computer science in their lessons! In this post, some of our trainers share their top piece of advice for teachers who are curious about trying CS First.
Formative assessment is a teaching tool that supports all learners, but it is especially critical for students who are struggling, as it holds the potential for changing the learning outcome. It is a quick way for teachers to evaluate learning needs and academic progress in their classroom. Here are some examples of how formative assessment can support special education goals.
Now that you are Leading Like the Easter Bunny, I offer four more tips and sample questions for reflection that will help ensure you are getting the most from your team:
I don’t mean to boast, but I’m the dapper, long-eared smiling rabbit in the photo. A few years ago on a warm and sunny Saturday afternoon, I became the Easter Bunny for the Danville Kiwanis Easter egg hunt. I gave out hugs, high fives, and photo ops with babies, little kids, big kids, and even adults. I stood in the center of a grassy field surrounded by thousands of eggs and watched kids ages 9 and under scurry to the colorful spots wrapping their tiny fingers around the eggs and plopping them into their decorative baskets. Perched on a bridge, I also had the pleasure of pulling the “release hatch” on a giant basket filled with hundreds of rubber duckies to start the duck race contest down White Lick Creek.
After my debut as the furry friend, I began reflecting on my experiences of the afternoon. Oddly, the lessons learned seemed eerily familiar to some of my experiences as a technology leader. And so, whether you are taking on the role of Easter Bunny or trying to become a better leader, I offer the following suggestions:
With so many formative assessment options available, how do you know which one is best for students, teachers, and administrators? After all, the needs for each of these stakeholders vary considerably. As you and your team make an important decision about which program you will select using funds from Indiana’s formative assessment grant, I hope that you’ll carefully consider our solution, Pivot Inspect.
Computer-Adaptive vs. Fixed-Form Assessments
Many formative (interim) assessment programs, including those provided by NWEA and STAR, are computer-adaptive. While this approach has clear benefits for a set of specific purposes, teachers have no control over the items students will see. In other words, teachers can’t answer a fundamental question using a computer-adaptive tool: Have students learned the specific skills I’ve taught?
As an educator, there are many different trends and words that seem to make the rounds through our world of education. The same seems to be true of “STEM” which has definitely been quite the buzz for the last 5 years or so, but is it just a trend?
I’m here to say, it most definitely is NOT!