October 31, 2012

31 Oct
Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

Hello! I wanted to send everyone a few treats today for Halloween. I am not a fan of tricks at all, and my first attempt at sending this out was “tricked” because much of the message was cut-out. May all of you have a safe (and fun if you observe it) Halloween!


Since my last email, I have come across a few sites that may be of interest to many of you.

  1. Are you needing a possible video for explaining a concept and YouTube is blocked? Check out what Disney has created for educators.
  2. Do you have students having problems learning the periodic table? Well, this interactive table may help you flip the light switch “ON” for them.
  3. Halloween is nearly over. However, this site that I just found this morning has lesson plans for all subject areas for Halloween and harvest time.
  4. Are you teaching math and/or science? Difficulty explaining the relative size or proportion of things? Look at this site. It even has sound (elevator music is not high on the list with students generally, but it is still helpful).
  5. Look at the “Five Minute Film Festival” from Edutopia regarding Halloween.

Now, I would like to do something a little differently from what I normally send in my informational emails to everyone in Blackboard.

Recently, there have been some educators asking questions such as how Blackboard could be useful to them. They don’t teach technical classes like ICT or STEM. Therefore, why do they need to know how to use Blackboard or why would they want to use it. My response is “Yes, you do teach technical skills” and “Yes, you do have time for Blackboard”. Let me provide an example or two below.

All of us have students who miss a day or two in class. Other students just don’t understand in one showing how to complete a procedure. It is often difficult for us as teachers to work with them individually to catch-up. Why not post videos or create web links in your Blackboard course to sites like Disney (mentioned above) or YouTube demonstrating concepts learned in class? Demonstrations on how to properly weld a flat butt weld on two pieces of scrap sheet steel or how to properly read and work an oxygen regulator can be upload and viewed. They can be watched repeatedly. The great thing also is that the videos can even be watched after and away from school! Therefore, they may not get as far behind if absent.

Another idea is to use a free Web 2.0 tool like Quizlet in Blackboard. You can create flashcards. Students can learn to master definitions and terms. This can be a “game” that students can complete for reinforcement of skills and knowledge.

This email mentioned the welding program under the Manufacturing pathway. Look for other pathway ideas in upcoming emails. Yours might be next!

By the way, there are many benefits of offering courses (or part of a course) online in career and technical education. Check out this article for more information. It provides a few ideas for you to ponder initially.




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Posted by on October 31, 2012 in General News, Links, Technology


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