Thoreau once wrote we are in danger of becoming the "tool of our tools," but it's doubtful he envisioned a day when there would be so much technology hardware and software to distract and empower us at the same time. Teachers who are grappling with iPads, laptops, kid blogs and cellphones in classrooms share their triumphs and struggles here.
A daunting task for teachers is to help students learn to use new tech tools, as well as understand community standards for each one. Katherine Sokolowski finds tech anchor charts are a great way to provide ongoing support to students as they navigate new software and apps.
Ruth Ayres explains why filtering is one of the most important concepts writers need to understand in this social media age, and she shares a simple lesson and chart for teaching students how filtering works.
Bitsy Parks has her first-grade students record their writing as part of a regular workshop and assessment routine, and then uses QR codes to share the recordings with families and the larger community.
Katherine Sokolowski explains why she uses webcomics in her literacy workshops, and shares an extensive list of her favorite online sources.
Gretchen Schroeder finds her high school students are always eager to see the movies related to the novels they are reading in class. Yet it rarely makes sense to show the entire film. She explains how to choose clips judiciously.
Bill Bass explains why teachers who are still using technology as a reward are far behind their colleagues in integrating computers and applications into workshops.
Ruth Ayres finds storytelling is at the heart of social media, and describes how teachers and students might work together to find a place for social media in classrooms.
Megan Skogstad shares lots of practical advice for creating and sustaining student data binders.
Maria Caplin has suggestions for making transitions to digital literacy in reading and writing workshops.
Melanie Meehan encourages teachers to build a video collection of students at work to use with next year’s class.
Katherine Sokolowski finds Padlet is a great tool for compiling learning and building community.
Bill Bass has advice for teaching web-based search skills to students.
Justin Stygles finds Google Earth is a marvelous tool for helping students research settings in novels.
Katherine Sokolowski and her students find Twitter is an essential element in their fifth-grade reading workshop.
Katharine Hale looks at the value of hashtags in helping students harness Twitter in a reading community.
Julie Johnson has advice on classroom uses of tech resources.
Katherine Sokolowski gives advice on how to add video to your literacy minilessons.
Franki Sibberson discovers we allow students to assess what reading matters most to them, we can learn a remarkable amount.
It’s impossible to master all the new technology resources available in classrooms, and fortunately we don’t have to. Katherine Sokolowski enlists peers as tech experts in her fifth-grade classroom.
Franki Sibberson has suggestions for moving to more digital response options with students.
Katharine Hale has moved much of her reading response to digital boards, which are also a useful tool for formative assessment.
Katherine Sokolowski shares how she has integrated podcasting into her 5th grade classroom.
Franki Sibberson designs a lesson cycle to prepare students for summer reading.
Colby Sharp shares step-by-step guidance for linking class blogs, Twitter and private Facebook pages when sharing with families. Best of all, you can turn over the task to students.
Katherine Sokolowski presents some strategies from her fifth-grade classroom for launching student blogs.
Bill Bass gives advice and provides resources for creating video with high school students.
Katharine Hale tries some flipped minilessons in her fifth-grade classroom and explains how technology is providing new opportunities for student learning.
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