Sunday, April 19, 2015

We Have to Stop Pretending

Recently, I received this invitation from Dave Kimball, via Twitter. You can find Dave's response to the prompt here, and to learn more about the origin of the challenge, check Scott McLeod's post.

Basically, the We Have to Stop Pretending challenge asks participants to pass along 5 thoughts on the topic and then to tag another 5 people to keep up the momentum.

I am going to do this cold, not looking at what others have already said, but will surely look later.

In education, we have to stop pretending:

1) That a child's home life and socio-economic status are not significant factors in a child's readiness to learn and succeed in school;
2) That students who speak a second language and come to the USA from other countries with different cultures will miraculously integrate into our educational system;
3) That comparing students' educational levels to those of students' in other countries where very different variables exist makes sense;
4) That music, art, and physical education are not just as important as other subject areas such as math and English/language arts; and
5) That schools are not becoming reflections of the unfortunate violence we find surrounding us in society and the world at-large.

I pass along the challenge of We Have to Stop Pretending to these five connected educators who make a difference in a student's life every day, knowing they'll accept the challenge and write a blog post and tag 5 others.

Marialice Curran @mbfxc
Sarah Thomas  @sarahdateechur  
Starr Sackstein @mssackstein
Scott Boylen @iowasboy
Paul Solarz @paulsolarz

Follow along on Twitter #makeschooldifferent to find others' responses to this challenge.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Twitter, Reaching More Educators Than Ever

A popular use of Twitter is to join and share with educators in weekly chats. Apparently, these have become so popular that they have also gotten competitive. Recently, I came across this blog post.

Edu Tech Stories: EdChats... Getting Competitive?

I dipped into to see what the author had to say about the competitiveness of Twitter chats and was not surprised. Each night, there is a multitude of chats to join, many at the same time, making it difficult to choose one.

Wondering what chats others find popular and of value on Twitter. The ones I join regularly are TeacherEdChat, at #teacheredchat, well, because I am one of the organizers and need to be online each Monday to help out the guest moderators and then to archive the chats at our website: Teacher Ed Chat on Twitter.

I also like to check into some state chats such as the California one, which obviously gets crowded and fast-paced, given the size of the state, and number of educators there as well as others that join from other places. California Ed Chat also has its own site and does a good job of it. Check out the chat's Profile on Twitter.

In addition, I have recently joined the Sunday night Read4Fun chat, and even though I'm not one of the organizers, I frequently archive the chats, which can be found on the chat's website:  #Read4Fun

Although I have named just three chats I join, there are plenty others, and my picks vary by week and topic. A good Twitter chat leaves me with a wealth of resources to check out and with colleagues to connect with both through Twitter and other connected means including Voxer groups, but Voxer chat groups is a topic for another post.