Course Design

High Impact Strategies

Diane Brenner , from TCEA, just wrote a very useful article noting the effectiveness of using Google and self-reported grading strategies. She sites John Hattie’s Research. I often hear about his work in Alice Keeler’s course.

Over the last few years, I have been integrating more peer and self-review activities into my class instruction. It doesn’t happen every day, but when it does, I am noticing powerful results.

Here is an example of what it looks like when I ask students to turn in a handout.

This is a classwork assignment. My students know they get complete credit for the assignment if they follow directions and try their best. I let them correct their work to engage them in the process.

Alice Keeler‘s Go Slow subscription classes and blog are great resources for coaching teachers who want to use self-reported grading and increase their effective strategy toolkit.


Hacking Template Tab for ADI Science Lab

I have been exploring ways of using Google Tools to increase interaction and feedback in my distance learning classes. This is a cool way to collect and monitor student work, even if you are not teaching at a distance. I use Alice Keeler’s Template Tab. Here is how I modify it to work with Science Lab groups within the Argument Driven Inquiry Process.


Scaffolding Vocabulary in Science Inquiry

I have been teaching science to ESL students for 8 years. I am a big proponent of Inquiry Science and the Learning Cycle Model. My professional development over the past few years has included courses, coaching and training in the use of Inquiry Science through the 5 E model and the use of SIOP for scaffolding vocabulary. Today I stumbled on a video from the Smithsonian Science Education Center. This video eloquently blends the models of supporting ESL students and the Inquiry Model. It explains how a science teacher can sort their vocabulary into Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 words and purposefully orchestrate inquiry while supporting the development of both social and academic language. I was happy to see that my quirky style has been on track. Intuitively I knew how to do this. But its affirming to hear this from a researcher discussing this from a pedagogical reference. I especially like this chart introduced as a simple tool to purposefully plan vocabulary support in a 5 E Inquiry lesson.

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 5.53.14 AM

I highly recommend that you pour a cup of coffee, download the handouts and watch the archived webinar of this session.

Scaffolding Science Vocabulary Development in Science Inquiry Instruction. Facebooktwitterpinterestmail

PBS Learning Media

I have been a huge fan of PBS Learning Media since it’s Teacher Domain inception. This is the site has indexed top notch media to science topics and standards. Resources are easy to use, find and the perfect length to spice up any science presentation. With the latest morph into PBS Learning Media, there are new tools including the ability to add questions to quizzes and track student viewing. PBS Rocks!

Click here to learn about the Walrus Haul Out this fall. Use the code beetle697 to allow me to see your viewing responses and enter your participation in the grade book.

Video Quiz Sample
Screen shot of Video Quiz Sample

Flash Cards in Moodle

Flash Cards are a timeless tool for learning vocabulary terms. I like to include these as optional resources for my ESL students. They enjoy having extra options and strategies for reviewing their knowledge. With the Moodle Flash Card Plugin and resources such as quizlet, I can quickly come up with a set of flash cards. Here’s a 5 minute video tutorial that explains the process.