Technology to Promote Education

I want to share the many, many ways we can all promote intelligent use of electronics. There are so many (free) educational apps for iPad’s, iPhone’s, computers and tablets.

I recommend going to your local store and getting a little binder, notepaper, and lots of tabs. (or little post-its and a roll of scotch tape) You will create your tabs as your browse the sites and create your own catalog of what is important to you. Remember to add what site you got the information from in case you want to go back to it again. I have teaching, literacy, math, assessment, websites to check out, classroom management and personal interest. Leave the tabs blank but have them ready as you will need some way to organize the information. I even bought some little sticky notes and a roll of tape so I could add more tabs quickly and easily. I print the name on the post-it, then tape it to the edge of the page because otherwise they tend to fall off. Extend the tape from the front, around the post-it and over the back, adhering it to the page on the  back. This keeps the tab in place and the ink from getting smudged.

I use free educational sites; I do not endorse any of these, nor do I promote them. I like them because they are free, easy to navigate and the information is up to date, relevant for most people, and most provide links to more resources:

EduTopia! Oh my goodness I can not say enough about this site. It has more information than I can get through in a month! I absolutely love it!! Everything from the core subjects (reading, math, science) to project based learning, game based learning, and many more – all kinds of videos, and posts/articles if you want to read about stuff. The articles are written by educated teachers, researchers and other experts. This is stuff you can watch and use right away – where it says classroom just imagine home if you want.  Go there now.You can browse topics by grades or subject from preschool to grade 12.

SimpleK-12 – There is a paid subscription but it is really not needed to get tons of information and access lots of valuable learning tools. A lot of webinars are available without paying and they are usually during the week on a Wednesday afternoon. A webinar is an online meeting where you listen and watch from home and you can see and hear the presentation but they can’t see you. So there are a lot of comments about learning in your pajama’s. 🙂  You can type in any question using your keyboard and the question will be answered at the end of the presentation. Once you join, again free, you will get email notices so you know when there are webinars about topics which you are interested. Easy! http://www.simplek12.com

http://pbskids.org/ and http://www.pbs.org/parents//  These are two sites with a lot of educational games for younger children.  Your kids will have fun for a long time playing games they do not even realize are teaching them skills! At the site for parents there is a lot of information for parents that include food, fitness, parenting, development. There is a lot here to browse and read through.

Those should be enough to get you going for the weekend and perhaps offer some fun (educational) ideas.

Have a great weekend everyone!! Yours in Education, D Mac.

This is Southern Ontario Now – Our Season is Fall or Autumn

20151020_135150    The leaves are certainly nice colours now that they are all changed to beautiful red, yellow, orange, and of course, brown. So a little lesson in the seasons for those that do not have them – this is the season of Autumn, or fall. I believe it is called fall because the leaves fall off the trees and cover the ground in a blanket to keep it warm through the winter months. I believe God and Nature have designed leaves to stay on the ground and keep the earth warm through the long, cold months of winter. The leaves naturally break down through the winter with the snow melting, and spring rains they get dissolved into the ground and nourish it with whatever nutrients are in the leaves.  SO EVERYONE SHOULD LEAVE THE LEAVES ON THE GROUND!!!! Yes a little pet peeve of mine. I raked up about four huge bags of leaves and the next day you would not even know it. The ground was covered again!! The wind just blows all the leaves off the trees and the leaves blow all over the yard, the driveway, the streets, clogging ground sewer drains sometimes, and in this instance, yes they have to be picked up and bagged. However, I have taken a stand against the leaves and nature and wind and am not raking any leaves until they are all off the trees. It just doesn’t make sense to me. Some people might want to rake a huge pile so their kids can jump in them, or to clean up the street, but otherwise, I don’t see the point. It’s a waste of time. I like how nice and clean that lawn looks all mowed and clean, but I can hardly believe it!! That must be a full time job looking after that huge lawn to the right of the picture. It is huge!  On that note – a local school does outdoor classes. They believe the kids learn better or more effectively or something so they have regular, outdoor classes. I am not sure what they do during these outdoor classes as I have not yet been included. Let me back track a bit. I had a meeting to volunteer at a local school, but I have not yet actually gone in and had any time with the class. It was a very relaxed, happy meeting because there was no pressure for me as I was not interviewing for a job. Well I guess I was – a volunteer job – but if it was a teaching job I am a terrible interviewee. I get nervous and say stupid answers – I even practice and have notes and cue cards but so far nothing has helped. I think I just have to get pissed and be confident and go into my next interview with an attitude of experience and confidence that I am the best teacher for the job, and I need to exude that confidence and get hired. First I need to get an interview. I am also looking at starting my masters degree in January since I am not getting any teaching job so far. So I am looking for master degree programs now. I am thinking online and possibly with some class time – but for financial reasons (no job) I think online would be best so I can stay at home and not worry about travelling ($) in the snow and cold of winter.  As usual, I will keep you updated my faithful followers. If you have any comments or questions about Canada or Ontario or the seasons feel free to ask! Yours in Education, D Mac.