<a href="” title=”Podcast”>Podcast

This podcast talked about google virtual field trip. I hadn’t heard about this until this course but it seems useful.  I probably should have search for something more interesting to me.   I can’t get into a podcast unless it was something I really want to hear about.  Otherwise it’s really boring.  This was a awfully boring video.  I should have just listened instead of watching.  

The “enhanced podcast” instructions were great.  The flipped classroom concept is something I definitely plan on using.  Even if I don’t flip, I still think I should make my powerpoints with audio so if a student is absent they can see what they missed in terms of notes/instruction.




Funny guy. I loved what he is saying but it’s not news to me.  I love how parents always get a free pass.  Maybe the drop out problem is a parenting issue, not a school issue.  If parents had to be licensed and get “professional development” we wouldn’t have many of the issues.  Unfit parents have kids and it’s America’s problem to fix.  I hadn’t thought about the economic toll of our stupidity, and it was interesting to hear him talk about the problem from that perspective.  I hope some day that educators will have a voice in the process, but for that to really happen the whole system would have to change.  Then companies like “Goldman Sachs” (who sponsored some of these videos FYI) would have to let that happen, and we all know the share holders won’t like that a bit. 

Nut & Bolts

Nut & Bolts

When I visual my classroom, I see my students teaching themselves much like they did in the authors classroom.   I always learned better through teaching, so I plan to have my students take ownership of the classroom as much as possible.  I’m coaching them along more then actually teaching.  In the article the author describes something similar in that she is a “co-collaborator” with her students.   

The only issue I have with the author is where are the standards/SOLs?  Are they being addressed?  I’m no fan of standards/SOLS and testing, but as long as teachers are accountable for teaching them, I think they need to be addressed.  I think if the students, in the article, were provided the standards and what they need to learn from the project, they may not have struggled with the creative process as much as mentioned.  I could be wrong here and the students were guided with the standards, but it just wasn’t mentioned.

Overall a very good idea that I will definitely try to recreated in my class. 

Follow me in the land of hashtags

Follow me in the land of hashtags

I’m officially on twitter https://twitter.com/MrHooper_Bio and it’s as terrible as I imagined.  I don’t get it.  Help me understand.  What am I suppose to be doing? Is it about making trendy hashtag comments?  What does this offer that facebook doesn’t? Why would anyone need both twitter and facebook?

On facebook I can watch/listen to soundcloud, youtube, etc links right in my browser. I don’t have to open another window. Same for my news.  I get a picture/image, and a whole bunch more characters to explain what the information is about.  I know both facebook and twitter require a separate link to read entire stories, but I feel less compelled to click on those links on twitter.

Is it that on twitter you can have nationwide discussions because of hashtags?  That could be useful if you have the right circle of people in the discussion.  It’s the dummies I worry about.  I’ve heard of these twitter fights/wars between athletes/celebrities.  I hear about twitter all the time, but never for redeeming qualities.  It’s usually someone said something stupid on twitter. The only positive news I remember about twitter was how crucial it was during the uprising overseas.

Having said all that I know that my students care way more about twitter then facebook.  Their parents are on facebook, so i get that they want to be somewhere else.  I guess I have to figure out why this is the platform they choose to express themselves.  I worry though by the time I do figure out why, and more importantly how to communicate with them via twitter, they will be moving on to the “NEXT THING.”

I chose to open a twitter account over the other options (tumblr,instagram, already have personal facebook) because it’s the most relevant platform. I hope to use this opportunity to learn why people use it, and how it can benefit me as a teacher.  My first strategy is to follow educational sites I like and see what they post about to find more things to follow.  I use soundcloud/facebook for my DJ and personal use, so I plan to use Twitter as a teacher resource only.  Maybe I will follow a few celebrities that have similar ideas about schools, teaching, learning and lifestyles.

If you read this please tell me your thoughts.  If twitter is great, tell me why?  What does it offer that facebook doesn’t?  What am I missing?  And how could I use it to be a great teacher?

PS.  I was just editing myself and I noticed on the edit page I can link related articles to my post.  Very cool. Facebook hashtags are on the way.  Guess I better learn about them asap.

“Giving Reluctant Students a Voice”

“Giving Reluctant Students a Voice”

I loved the idea that the article suggests.  I think using a classroom blog is a great way to get all students involved.  I don’t think it should be the only way.  I think you have to get students to use their voice in the classroom and not just type their thoughts.  They do plenty of that already on their phones.  If you have type 3 and 4’s, then it’s the teachers job to get them involved in the discussions.  Give them advanced notice of the topics you are going to call them on so they can be prepared and help eliminate some of the anxiety that students have about speaking in front of people. If that solution doesn’t work then speak to them about what is limiting them mentally.  No matter what subject, there is have “hidden curriculum”, and building confidence should be high on the agenda.  So says me. 

“Innovative Educator” my favorite of the Top ten tech blogs


Out of all the suggested blogs I liked the appearance/display of this site best.  It was easy to navigate and understand.  It didn’t look as crowded as some of the other suggested sites did.  I couldn’t find anything subject specific for Biology, but I still found many of the posts relevant and useful.