How do teachers provide students with regular opportunity to write and compose at the keyboard when there are just a few student computers in the classroom? Vickie O’Donnell at East Broad Street K-8 school had a fabulous idea and we put it to the test.
Why Create a Writing Kiosk?
Ms. O'Donnell had a list of needs for her students...
You'd like to use social media with your students, but need a few ideas to get started? Look no further! Try one of these each day, or stick to one idea and repeat the post with different content regularly to create a social media theme. If you work in SCCPSS, be sure to follow the posting guidelines for your district.
1. Answer the famous question; "WHAT DID YOU LEARN IN SCHOOL TODAY?"
Invite your class to design a post each day to tell the community about the learning and projects taking place in your classroom.
2. Interview a teacher/principal/student....
Be sure to have media releases for all students prior to posting. Then share a few interview questions and responses to "Meet So and So."
3. Introduce a piece of literature
What are your students reading? How does it impact their instruction? Maybe an audience member could share their thoughts on the reading selection?
4. Share something popular...How can your class participate in a new trend? Perhaps a #MannequinChallenge could be attempted at bus dismissal?
5. Share photos from a field trip...
Everyone enjoys seeing students learn real life applications to their studies. Include a few pics and commentary of the valuable learning experience. Be sure to only share photos of students with media releases.
6. Share someone else's content....
Have you seen an article recently that bears relevance for your audience? Share it! Be sure to credit your source.
7. Host an online gallary by posting an awesome piece of student...
artwork, poem, story, project, photo, narration, dance, song, instrumental, whatever!
8. Share your latest email newsletter or announcement. Do we really need all that paper? Save yourself the time of standing by the copy machine and post the information where your audience is sure to find it!
9. Celebrate a milestone or little known holiday...
We've read ____ books.
We've gone ______ days without losing a homework assignment.
We donated ______ blankets to the Humane Society. etc....
10. Give Thanks!
Has someone volunteered in your classroom, or provided snacks, or supplies? Take a quick photo and thank them for their generosity.
11. Share something seasonal...
Are your students working on a garden project? Cleaning up debris from a hurricane? Collecting canned goods?
12. Show off your expertise...
Post a regular "Did you know?" where your audience can learn/benefit from your instructional content. These could serve as conversation starters for parents and students.
13. Who said it? Share a Famous Quote...
Who are your students studying? Or, who is quotable in current events? What are people saying and how is their message impacting students?
Please share your ideas by adding them to the comments below!
Happy New Year!
So many articles and social media posts are focused on goal setting, habit forming, and general personal overhaul this week. I'm joining in the barrage of posts, but to ask you this one question. What will technology integration look like in your classroom in 2017? Will you focus on:
Remember when we were in school? In "way back when" land, our teachers painstakingly taught us the basics of personal and business letter writing, right down to the comma placement in a "Thank You" note! If memory serves me, there was a salutation, body, and closing to every written letter. Depending on the audience, there was a difference in the levels of formality and friendliness we were expected to achieve in our sentence structure.
Now it's our turn! How do we cultivate digital citizens in our current student population? We live in a world where many influential communicators lack the most rudimentary pleasantries of modern communication. And they post all the time! It's important that students have opportunity to communicate in modern ways at school. It's our job to provide guidance and structure so that students practice these skills and reach out to a global audiece successfully. Building postive digital citizens through positive online communication is an ongoing process. It's not a one time "Digitial Citizenship" lesson or one month "Be Kind Online" focus.
Your Social Media in EDU Challenge:
1. Invite students to author the posts for your existing classroom social media account. (See my previous blog posts in quarter one and two focused on getting started with public Facebook pages, or classroom Twitter accounts.)
2. Set a social media posting schedule for your classroom. How often will your students write the post for your classroom social media account? Scheduling your social media posts on a classroom calendar helps ensure they will happen.
3. Decide the process students will follow to submit their posts to you? Will this become an exit ticket? An email to the teacher? A response to a Google Form?
4. Get Posting!
5. Share your experiences in the comments below.
Classroom Posting Ideas:
Select any of the posts styles from my blog post 13 Ideas for Classroom Social Media Posts to get started. Try a different one each day, or stick to a theme to develop predictable posting patterns. Be sure to post to your school, district, and classroom hashtag to help reach a wide audience.
Social Media in EDU - Q2 Badge:
The goals in quarter 2 were to:
To earn the Quarter 2 Badge, provide the following information as evidence in your comment of this blog post:
Be sure to submit your post in the comments section below! Use your post as evidence for TKES, if you wish.
With twelve days until holiday vacation, I'm challenging you to post one thing each day which showcases the learning activities students experience in your classroom. There's still much to learn between now and the end of the quarter. It's an exciting time of year: you've got #12DaysofSocial to focus on the positive, educational, and engaging activities students experience through your instruction!
So, pause at the end of each day and ponder about the "post-worthy" activities occuring in your classroom. I'll join in the fun, and post to our department Facebook page each day as well. Let's follow eachother through the #12DaysofSocial Challenge and have a little social media fun.
Social Media Challenge - TKES 9 and 10
10 Minutes each day.
1. Post a photo and/or comment daily to the classroom page/group you built in one of the previous challenges.
2. Add the link to your page in the comments below so that we can all be sure to become one of your followers by liking your page. (Be sure to invite your Facebook Friends to LIKE your page.)
3. Be sure to engage in the posts from our cohort peeps with a:
Like, Love, Happy Face, etc
Positive comment or
so that the content is seen on newsfeeds across our community.
4. Add a posting idea to the thread of this blog post.
5. Bask in the sweet success of "Challenge Accepted!"
TKES Standards 9 & 10
Google yourself. Google your school. What story does the Google results tell? Teachers, classrooms, and schools can and should contribute to the story told by their online presence by increasing the positive stories shared via social media.
In the previous social media challenge, the stage was set for creating a Facebook Page where classrooms could publically share news with anyone online. Facebook members who Like the page will see updates in their newsfeed while the general public will see a few posts and will the be prompted to join Facebook and Like the page they are viewing. Sometimes, an added layer of audience control and participation is desired. Privacy concerns certainly play a role in the decisions of sharing school information with a public audience. If you desire more control over the audience with whom your information is shared, perhaps your situation would be best served with Facebook Groups?
A Facebook Group offers a smaller circle of membership to whom posts are shared. The group administrator holds many options for group and posting management. The major differences between Facebook Groups and Pages center around notifications, member numbers, and how broadly information is shared. Decide which is right for you by reading this post by Facebook.
No matter which you decide...Pages or Groups.... you need to be sure to:
Your Story - Social Media Challenge 2 : (2 hours)
Part 1 - Groups, Pages, Profiles. You decide!
Create a page or group for your classroom. If you've already built a profile page for your classroom or organization, please follow the steps to convert the profile to a Page or Group to align with Facebook's terms of service agreement. (Facebook Profile pages are reserved for actual people to communicate with friends and family. Public organizations should be represented as a Page.) Directions are included in the bullets below.
Part 2- Get Creative
Upload an appealing cover image for your page/group. Use Canva.com to create beautiful cover art in minutes.
Write a description for your group or page.
Write your first post! Revisit your SMART Goal and stay on track.
Part 3 Send Invitations
Invite members or the public to join your group/like your page.
Post regularly, keeping your SMART Goal "top of mind."
Part 4 Share with the Cohort
In the comment section below, please invite the rest of us to join your group or like your page so that we can all connect and learn from each other's efforts.
TKES Standards: 9 & 10
Why do teachers and schools need to post classroom news on a Facebook page?
What do the Social Media experts say?
7 Keys to Creating the Perfect School Facebook Page.
Top 10 Best Performing Facebook Posts for Schools
What does my school district say?
Visit the SCCPSS Facebook Page
Download the SCCPSS Social Media Guidelines from my resources page.
Classroom Facebook Page Challenge (2.0 hours)
Part one: Search for and follow existing schools and pages.
1. Search for your school or your child's school on Facebook. Does an official page exist?
2. Search for your child's teacher. Perhaps a classroom Facebook page is in place?
3. LIKE or Follow a school page as well as my department page at https://facebook.com/sccpssitc
Part two: Set the stage for a classroom Facebook page.
1. Now that you've followed other class or school pages, what's your goal?
Spoiler alert! Next Challenge: Create a classroom Facebook page or group to tell your classroom story.
What messages do teacher websites convey to parents?
Is the website up to date?
Consider this scenario: It's the beginning of the school year. Parents have just learned the name of their child's teacher. It's YOU! What's their first course of action? They Google you.
What will they find? What does your website say about you as an educator? What is it like to be a learner in your classroom?
With a little attention each week, you can design a website parents rely on for school communication and visit again and again.
A few tips:
Include a Professional Teacher Profile
This is a must. Your audience wants to be informed about the person with whom their child spends the entire day! Be professional, friendly, and concise. If you choose to share any personal information regarding family or pets, keep it brief. Remember, your audience is more concerned with your education and experience than your personal life.
If you choose to include a "Welcome to my class" statement, consider revising it as the school year continues. Reading "Welcome to the new school year" in March, gives the audience the impression that your site is not up to date. Parents will visit your site as soon as they learn their child has been assigned to your classroom. How will a summer visit to your site benefit parents?
Update the Academic Focus and Student Showcase
A student showcase is a great opportunity to provide a glimpse of life in the classroom. Including photos of student work can be an easy way to bring your curriculum and student experience to life.
Give parents a window into your classroom. Students constantly return home and face the questions, "What did you learn today?" "How was school?" "How did you do on your test?" with less than accurate information. Parents are greeted with answers like "Not much." "OK, I guess." "I don't know."
Each week, update the academic focus of your classroom on your website. Share with parents and students the kinds of learning activities with which students will be involved.
Help parents support the learning process by providing them with an overview of concepts their children are focused on at this time. Keep the edu-speak and standards jargon to a minimum. Be informative, but not too lengthy. You need to update this regularly. If you make this into a grueling chore, it won't get updated, and your website will be rapidly uninformative to your audience.
Consider a Classroom Calendar
Include any special events which are date sensitive:
Unless your webpage is password protected, be cautious about posting every detail of the field trip on a public site. Intentionally leave out information that advertise the specific destination and time you'll be taking your students off campus. Refer parents to the paper handout sent regarding field trip details
Include convenient Documents and Downloads
If All classrooms have:
Parent and Student Resources
Involved parents want their children to be successful in school. They visit teacher websites and seek out resources to support learning. You are in the perfect position to make recommendations. Publishing those recommendations on your teacher webpage is a good practice.
Recommendations could take on many forms:
How will you keep it going? A website is a living document. It needs regular updates with relevant information or it will die. Schedule time each week to update your website. Twenty minutes each week is all it takes. You've already written your lesson plans, so drink a cup of coffee.... add a few bullet points.
Bonus Feature.....If you are a social media user, consider embedding a widget to your website from your class Twitter or Instagram feeds. By including these social elements, your webpage will be up to date each time you post.
The goals of quarter one were to develop a supportive personal learning network and begin to build a polished professional online presence.
To earn the shiny social media badge for quarter one, you need to provide the following information as evidence in your comment of this blog post:
Be sure to submit your post in the comments section below! Use your post as evidence for TKES, if you wish.
District Instructional Technology Coach, Google Certified Trainer, Google Certified Educator, Apple Teacher, tech therapist, teacher supporter, avid reader, bullet journalist