Memory loss at the hands of the internet @NYT #EdTech #Education #k12

A series of psychology experiments conducted by Betsy Sparrow of Columbia University and reported by the NYT suggest that we may be moving toward distributed memory. That is, knowing that information is accessible to us through the web at the press of a few imprints on our touch screen, we make pointers in our brains […]

Crowdsourcing Education Funding @EdSurge #EdTech #k12 #Education

Grant writing is not for the faint of heart. Teachers are loathe to make an attempt to fund projects, even great innovative projects, because it involves spending several hours writing with what may be a small chance for success. Big risks with small chance of reward is the land of the entrepreneur. Teachers already have […]

Online Text Reading Level Assessment Tools Reviewed #k12 #education #edtech

When assigning text reading to students it is helpful to appropriately target the grammatical complexity and vocabulary level for the audience you are teaching. I teach conceptual physics to a very diverse student body. In the same class with sophomore English language learners I will have senior IB diploma candidates. It is helpful to be […]

Intimacy, Destruction, and a Google Doc #Edtech #Education #k12

The first time I asked students to submit papers to me as a shared Google Doc instead of an attachment, I sensed their reticence. The reticence was not because these IB diploma candidates in the capstone epistemology course I was teaching for them did not know how to do that. These digital natives felt that […]

Concept Maps are Cool, but.. #EdTech #k12

..Infographics are way cooler. If you are a fan of Wired Magazine, then you know this. I can spend as much time looking at and thinking about a well-done infographic as I can a well written feature story. That is, unless the feature story is about pirates, high-profile technocrats that disappear at sea, narcosubs in […]

New #EdTech, Old Teachers, The Adoption Myth #ISTE

An unfortunate assumption that edupreneurs frequently make is one that is also made by administrators inside the system; the ageist assumption that older teachers are unlikely to change their practice. It is a small minority of teachers in their later years that refuse to change their practice. My experience has been just the opposite of […]

Flipped Classroom sounds like an old best practice reborn #Edtech #ISTE

Constructivist education, for those who don’t already know, is when a learner actively participates in creating their own knowledge. There are myriad hierarchies that rank the effectiveness of the different ways we can learn, but an old favorite of mine goes something like this.. We learn some of what we hear We learn a bit […]

A critical examination of School of One pilot study

School of One is all over the blogosphere. I took a close look at their website tonight for the first time. The program is interesting. It appears that the company is using a comprehensive algorithm that is not only adaptive inside of the box, but outside as well. The algorithm considers how best to meet […]

When is a Game Really a Game?

This interesting blog post by Aneesh Bhat identifies both what will make game based learning both a game and learning. Aneesh cites research that is consistent with my experience as a teacher, indicating that if there is a way to win the game without having to learn the intended material, then that is what the […]

Feedback Loops to Change Behavior

The cover article for this month’s (19.07) Wired magazine is about feedback loops. Goetz reviews studies in which people provided with immediate feedback about their actions in a non-threatening way respond better than an abstract threat or incentive. What might this mean for designing EdTech applications? If student input is immediate and teacher feedback is […]

The #EdTech Backchannel in the Classroom? Really?

Yes, really. The backchannel can work in the classroom, as it does at a conference, if a teacher can monitor the conversation as it is happening. If you are making a product that includes a backchannel application, make sure any student to student messages or student to whole class messages pass through a teacher filter […]

Market Sustainability Depends on Teacher Commitment

HS teachers are keenly aware of the value or distraction provided by technology in the classroom. You might sell a district’s leadership on the idea that something will increase student engagement, like interactive whiteboards, or decrease operating expenses, like online professional development videos, but if the teachers can’t find the added value, good luck with […]

Lesson Plans Are Personal

Most HS teachers do not want or need lesson plans. A lesson plan is particular to a context. Teachers want resources. Short videos, images, simulations, and well written test questions (both formative and summative); these get our attention.