Santa Meets the Common Core Standards

19 Dec

Image of Santa on sleigh pulled by reindeer

In search of standard-based instruction, teachers have been producing and purchasing products aligned with the Common Core Standards. Certainly, they’d like to provide high interest topics for children. This is where Santa enters the picture. If you search for Common Core + Santa on TeachersPayTeachers.com (TPT), you’ll find 222 results! The product shown above is currently my best seller on TPT. I used Clement Clarke Moore’s Christmas poem, and the standards on speaking and listening, to create a literacy activity.

In my product, students are provided space to illustrate the story on each page to match the meaning of the text. Twelve vocabulary words are boldface typed within the poem with definitions provided in the glossary. The purpose is to let students take ownership of the poem by illustrating it and then practice reading it to their parents or other students in the school. This was a popular activity I used in my 3rd Grade class during language arts. Students were eager to learn the new words such as sugarplums, kerchief, and sash, so that they could accurately illustrate their self-made booklet.

Here are the correlating Common Core Standards for Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas:

  • Kindergartners: #5. Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions as desired to provide additional detail.
  • Grade 1 Students: #5. Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
  • Grade 2 Students: #5. Create audio recordings of stories or poems; add drawings or other visual displays to stories 
    or recounts of experiences when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
  • Grade 3 Students: #5. Create engaging audio recordings of stories or poems that demonstrate fluid reading at an understandable pace; add visual displays when appropriate to emphasize or enhance certain facts or details.

The poetry product featured above can be purchased online in my Teacherrogers’ store: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Students-Illustrate-Twas-The-Night-Before-Christmas

You can find PDFs of all the Common Core Standards and their applications to students with disabilities and English Language Learners at this site: http://www.corestandards.org/the-standards

Sandra Rogers

Note: This post was previously published on this 12/19/13.

Image

Gamer Vs. Educator Semiotic Domains a la J. P. Gee

8 Nov

From F2F Teaching to Blended Format

3 Nov

Tag words from my blog

In my opinion, the blended format offers the best learning situation.  It’s like a web-enhanced course on steroids.  You’ll get to meet with the students in person, share all types of great resources online, and continue discussions online instead of having the conversation end when the face-to-face class ends.  The 3 most important things I’d tell faculty transitioning from regular face-to-face classes (F2F) to that of a blended format are as follows:

  1. Establish a clear schedule that explicitly outlines the activities to be conducted according to your blended format.
  2. Revisit each of your F2F lessons and assignments to decide which ones are compatible for the online format and adapt them accordingly.
  3. Apply many of the same basic principles for engendering a community of inquiry in your F2F to that of the blended format.

Blended format schedule.  It’s imperative to state which activities will happen in the F2f class and asynchronously online; otherwise, students will become confused and miss F2F class meetings other activities. Educators should provide students a paper schedule and also add the important dates to the online course calendar.  Additionally, special reminders can be shared via the online course announcements tool.   This schedule should also be appended to the course syllabus.  I suggest placing the dates of the F2F class meetings in the heading of the syllabus instead of buried within the other information.

Adaptation of lessons.  Review all of your lessons with a new lens for the blended format.  Make a t-chart of which lessons are suitable for the F2F and online learning environments.   From the t-chart, build a new schedule like the one above.  It serves as a nice outline for the course. You may have to modify, add, or remove existing activities and lessons to adequately fit the blended format.   For example, I like to conduct a mock and formal debate.  In the past, I taught the reading course in a Web-enhanced format.  In designing for the blended format, I realized that I could conduct the mock debate via the Meetings tool and keep the formal debate F2F.  Lastly, make sure you edit all your existing assignments tied to lessons to reflect the updates.

Community of inquiry. A community of inquiry (COI) exists when you have social presence, cognitive presence, and teacher presence.  Some educators believe that the COI can only occur in F2F formats.  Actually, when teachers encourage students to share ideas and their work, this provides for social presence online and F2F. Try to bring the same great F2F conversations to the online forums for discussion.  This requires a lot of forethought before you post your question and related articles.  This can engender cognitive presence if it provides challenging questions and promotes student-student interactions.  Lastly, teachers need to be actively engaged in the discussions online in the same way that they lead, moderated, or guided the F2F ones.  This provides teacher presence.  Just as you would give timely feedback on assignments as a F2F best practice, this should be your mode of operation for the blended format.

In summary, the three main things to keep in mind for transitioning content from a F2F course to a blended format are to be hyper-vigilant of the lesson scheduling, adaptation, and maintenance of the COI.

I hope you find this helpful!

Sandra Rogers

Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, Mindset, and Technology

17 Oct

This summer, I read Plato’s The Allegory of the Cave for a course assignment. If you’re not familiar with it, see this YouTube video of a professor’s lecture and animation:

Plato’s allegory reminded me of the chains we place on ourselves as adult learners.  Ever since I graduated from college, I have encountered adults who profess the age-old idiom: “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”  As an educator, I confronted this in the Peace Corps when working with artisans, in college when teaching languages, and even within my own family dealing with challenging tasks.

I exclude my mother and myself from this.  She never allowed anything to keep her from learning something new.  She instilled in me the gumption to apply myself to any task, no matter how difficult it may appear to be.  From experience, I can assert that I have been successful at learning various difficult things as an adult.  For example, I learned to speak Portuguese at age 30, Latin dance at age 40, and speed read at age 50.  Of course, this list is only cursory.  I share my successes with my students to let them know that learning can occur at any time in your life.

The fable is related to learning theory and technology in many ways.  First, as instructional designers, we must keep ourselves informed of the latest research on multimedia practices.  Otherwise, we’ll become slaves to our own (or others) beliefs.  I have a growth mindset.  I want to know what the research indicates as an effective practice and then immediately start to apply it.  Of course, I have my hunches or intuition about how things should be presented.  However, I’m open to learning new ways to bring about improved learning outcomes.

Second, we will face opposition and disbelief in our practices and informed knowledge when we enter the workforce as novice instructional designers with our advanced degrees.  Naysayers of scientific findings will state that a certain empirically based practice will not work at their institution.  They may even state that they’ve tried it before with no improvement.  We’ll need to build a good reputation and gain buy-in from others in regards to introducing new ideas.  Otherwise, we may fall prey to Groupthink.

Here’s a PDF of the play: http://classicalastrologer.files.wordpress.com/2012/12/plato-allegory-of-the-cave.pdf

15% TPT Sale on Halloween Themed Educational Products

11 Oct
Girl dressed for Halloween going trick-or-treating

Happy Halloween!

Dear Readers,

It’s been a while since I posted anything about my TPT store. This weekend and Columbus Day, I’m having a sale on all of my Halloween inspired educational products.  Check them out! When you purchase these you gain access to the download and can start using them right away.

Elementary Halloween Song in Spanish with images and lyrics on a PowerPoint;  complete song on my YouTube channel. See link for details.

K-3 Halloween Literacy Center Games with directions, rules, and printable game pieces. Won’t you be my first buyer?  This is an awesome product that hasn’t sold yet. Buyers rely on product feedback, so make sure you leave some.

Middle School (MS) poetry study: 3 sets of questions and answers for 3 spooky poems of Edgar Allan Poe, available in English and Spanish; aligned with Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Product provides links to poetry.

MS novelette study: questions and answers for R. L. Stevensons’ Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, aligned with CCSS and also available in English and Spanish. If you don’t have this novel, download a free eBook and podcast from The Gutenberg Project! See product info.

MS short story study: questions and answers for Henry Jame’s A Problem. This is aligned with CCSS and also available in English and Spanish.  A link to the story is provided with the product.

I also have Q&A for Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight in English and Spanish.

The MS literature products are also sold in a bundles in English and Spanish, which are on sale this weekend.  If you’re not a member of TPT, you can create an account for free.  This allows you to access the thousands of freebies available from millions of teachers on the site.

Sandra Rogers,

Teacherrogers Store

TeachersPayTeachers.com (TPT)

My Presentation Schedule at AACE World e-Learn Conference

3 Oct

I’m very excited to be going to the AACE conference for the first time. AACE stands for the Association for Advancement of Computing in Education.  They’re hosting the World e-Learn conference in New Orleans, LA at the Sheraton Hotel on Canal Street!  Here’s my presentation schedule:

October 28th at 10:00-11:00: How to Make Your Online Course Accessible, a roundtable on how to meet ADA requirements will take place in the Gallery along with many other roundtable conversations in the same room.

October 28th at 11:55-12:15: Trace Effects Logic Model, a brief paper on an informal program theory evaluation in Salon 828. I’ll also be serving as the presider over the other sessions until 1:00 p.m. in this room.

October 28th at 1:30-1:50: Effective Online Communication in Higher Education, research findings and their practical applications in the Grand Ballroom E.

October 29th at 3:05-3:25: Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORGs) for Second Language Acquisition, a brief paper on my literature review findings in the Edgewood room.

I hope to see you there! I’ll be volunteering at the registration desk on Monday from 1-5 p.m. and Thursday from 7:30-11:30 a.m. Come by to say hello! I’ll be tweeting about the conference @teacherrogers with the hastag #elearn. Afterward, I’ll create a Padlet virtual wall with all of my presentations, photos, and tidbits I learn at the conference.

Sandra Rogers

P.S. This was my 100th blog post!

Photo of Sandra Annette Rogers

How to Make Your Online Course More Accessible

25 Sep

My Google Drive Blog Posts

20 Sep

This week, I was asked to share my knowledge on Google Drive with colleagues at work.  I figured it was time to resurrect a couple of useful blog posts! Here’s my collection on the various educational uses of Google Drive apps.

1. Basic Tech Tools: Google Drive,  Maps, Google+, and Translations (blog)

2. Create a Google Site from a Gmail Account (video)

3.  I Love Google Scholar Alerts! (blog)

4. What are Google Drawings? (infographic)

I’m currently checking out the beta version of Google Classroom. I’ll let you know what I think in a future blog post.

Sandra Rogers

Face-to-Face to Online Course Development Checklist

7 Sep

 

I created this list for instructional designers working with faculty in higher education who are moving their courses online for the first time.  This is not a comprehensive list but rather a checklist for talking points.  I hope you find it helpful!

  • Will the course shell be shared with others in your department?
  • What are the course learning goals and objectives (review syllabus, lecture notes, and assignments)? What are the objectives for each unit?
  • What do you want your students to achieve through online activities and interactions?  (Discuss reuse/redesign of existing activities like a pen-and-paper vocabulary log to an electronic glossary/flashcards.)
  • What is your ability to develop multimedia presentations? Discuss training and helpful resources.
  • How familiar are you with the online learning management system? Discuss training and helpful resources.
  • Share sources of support for pedagogical assistance for faculty.
  • Share sources of online technological and academic support for students (e.g., Smarthinking, TurnitIn, Orientation Course, LMS 24/7 Support Desk, Blog Tips, or job aids)
  • What are the departmental timelines, constraints, testing requirements, and online resources?
  • Share samples of monitoring tools: weekly activity checklists for students and teachers, tracking sheet for teacher’s response to students in forums, and LMS site statistics and test item analysis.
  • Share sample rubrics for collaborative projects, forums, and individual assignments, as well as resources for creating rubrics (e.g. Rubistar).
  • Share copy of Netiquette, sample rubric for forums, and effective set-up of threaded discussion to engender a community of inquiry.
  • Share your university’s  accessibility guidelines for e-learning.
  • Invite faculty to view your model course as a student (teacher-as-learner role).
  • Share sample semestrial course checklist for design/redesign.

 

Sandra Rogers,

Instructional Designer

My Personal Learning Theory

30 Aug

Learning is the acquisition of knowledge, skills, abilities, as well the acculturation of values, attitudes, and emotional reactions (mindset). Learning is determined from the following observations: completion of a new behavior/task, change in frequency/speed/intensity to said task, changing the complexity of a task, and responding differently to particular stimulus. Moreover, learning can be inferred from certain situations like avoidance of risky or unpleasant behaviors.

Learning is impacted by prior knowledge (and misunderstandings), a learners’ belief system, and environmental barriers. Environmental barriers include economic, physical, political, linguistic, ethno-cultural, and social ones. For example, societal barriers include gender bias.

According to Pinker’s debate at the Harvard Mind, Brain, Behavior series, there’s a great deal of parental discrimination in raising and reporting on sons versus daughters’ individual differences in math and science. She suggested that this produces a pattern of discrimination in favor of sons. For example, parents of children in the 6th or 8th grade thought that their sons were better at math and science than parents of daughters of the same age. Subsequently, females may lose interest or be discouraged due to lack of encouragement. Of note, male and female students at that age both reported liking math. Fortunately, teachers of that same age group reported no gender biases.

My personal learning theory is a myriad of best practices supported by human learning theories of behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism. (I actually place constructivism within the cognitivist umbrella term.) I adhere for the need to show measurable outcomes which is rooted in behaviorism; an example would be the utilization of measurable objectives. Moreover, I acknowledge the use of positive reinforcement to enhance learning. As for cognitive theory, I adhere to cognitivists’ self-regulated learning. For example, I’m a constant learner who reflects on my own understanding of a topic or methodology and seeks ongoing education.

From constructivism, I utilize Vygotsky’s sociocultural learning theory to address misconceptions. For instance, I coined a term called, “smart mistakes”. These types of errors are often based on preconceived rules, such as the application of false cognates to a second language. In this situation, the learning is drawing from their first language, which is part of their socio-cultural background.

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“The more radical the person is, the more fully he or she enters into reality so that, knowing it better, he or she can transform it. This individual is not afraid to confront, to listen, to see the world unveiled.― Paulo Freire

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