Loved the energy, innovation, and conversations shared at last week’s Fall CUE Conference. Definitely two jam-packed days! Below are some of my takeaways:
Writing in the Shed – Lisa Nowakowski shared a wonderful resource for English Language Development (ELD) students: The Literacy Shed, a collection of short video animations with no narration. Lisa has her students collaborate on developing a storyboard for what they think would be a logical dialogue. To narrate the videos, students use the record option available through SnagIt. What a great (and free) strategy to motivate students to put their language skills into practice!
Teaching with YouTube – I first heard Lisa Highfill speak at the 2012 Google Teacher Academy (Mountain View, Calif), where she inspired all present with her integration of R.J. Palacio’s novel Wonder into her elementary classroom. I’m pretty sure all who attended her packed Fall CUE session left equally inspired with Lisa’s approach to YouTube video in the classroom: Find It, Playlist It, Pair It, Package It. Such a fabulous listing of videos to get students moving, thinking, doing! EX: Try pairing Daniel Cui, a soccer video, with a KQED DoNow question, What can you do to be a change maker?
Key Principles for Digital Tools for EL Instruction: I regret that I arrived late to Martin Cisneros’ session (got caught up in conversations out in the quad). His knowledge and passion for teaching ELs left me wanting to delve deeper into the topic, starting with California’s ELD Standards (which do not replace the California Common Core Standards, but help with with meeting them).
So how can technology help ELs gain proficiency in English?
- Social media provides opportunities to practice literacy skills.
- Google Translate is a great starting point for teachers to make connections with their EL students.
- Blabberize makes it easy for students to practice their speaking skills. It’s way less intimidating to have a character speak for you.
- Padlet allows for voice recording
- Screencasting with tools like SnagIt or Screencastify
- Need instant curriculum for your ELs? Head to Pinterest!
From Blog to Book: Rescuing the Writing Process’s Neglected Step, Publication – As a long-time blogger and supporter of student blogging, I was thrilled to see this session listed in the program. David Theriault and Sean Ziebarth are awesome presenters and an awesome team.
In one very fun, fast-paced hour, they’ve inspired me to ramp up my district blogging workshops. Somehow, with all the focus on all things Google, I haven’t really been promoting blogging. Yet in all my Google workshops, I tend to start with the SAMR model as way to generate conversations on taking technology integration beyond “substitution” and “modification.” Blogging is often the tool that takes a project up the SAMR ladder to “redefinition” by providing students with a platform for publishing – to an authentic audience.
The gap I need to help bridge is helping teachers move from blogs (noun) as a website for simply posting assignments to blogging (verb) as a shared conversation and step into publishing. I know in my upcoming blogging workshops, I’ll be referencing David’s post Shop Talk: The Nuts and Bolts of Student Blogging.
The Life Aquatic: This is Adventure – Closing Keynote
It’s rare that I stay all the way through at a two-day conference to the closing keynote (I’ve usually reached the saturation point by 3:00), but I’m glad I made the exception to hear David Theriault’s keynote. I’m hoping CUE will post a link soon to the recording of his keynote as the slideshow below is not narrated. If you read the keynote description and then go through the slideshow, I think you’ll have an idea of how intriguing, fun, and thought-provoking David’s delivery and content both are.
The Life Aquatic: This is Adventure
Nobody knows what’s going to happen. And then we “try it, share it, and reflect on it.” That’s the whole concept. -Steve Zissou
The stories that define us, that we share with others, are built of memorable moments. Create
meaningful, memorable moments for your learners, and the world by stepping off the yellow brick road and diving into the deep sea of pedagogy. Steven Zissou, Harry Potter, Kenny Shopsin, Frederic Friedel, and Lynda Barry are just a few of the deep sea creatures we will meet on this adventure.
Bring your wetsuit and diving equipment, no one is staying on the boat in this keynote.
And one more great Fall CUE “session” – dinner at the Dead Fish Restaurant (just across the Benicia Bridge in Crockett) with Cathe Petuya, Mary Barelson, and Barbara Bray.