If you could be a fly on the wall of an average classroom, it’d be pretty likely that you’d hear something like “Don’t forget to study your vocab words tonight!” or “Remember to review your flashcards tonight!”
While there’s been a move away from the rote learning of yesteryear, most educators agree that having a firm grasp of content area vocabulary is still an important piece to the learning process. I think that there are two important goals for learning vocabulary in content areas: (1) retention of the words (sticky learning) and (2) application of the words.
After the episode aired, Dan Gallagher shared on that same grid some words of caution: Blabberize’s Terms of Service indicate that it’s not appropriate for all ages. So, in Episode 6, I shared this and then, on the spot, found a hack for a solution:
I’ve posted about #StopMotionSlides a number of times (here are my tips for making them) and they make a pretty good solution for this. Put a picture into a slide, use some careful cropping and then leverage a stop motion technique. Not only can you make the mouth move up and down, but you can then publish the animation (#13 in these tips) and then record them with Screencastify (or your screencasting tool of choice) with a voiceover (#14 in these tips)!
Voila! Not as easy as Chatterpix, but at least it eliminates the need of adding another tool and another set of terms of service to what you use with your students: you likely already use Google Slides & Screencastify!
Plus, unlike ChatterPix or Blabberize, you can have multiple characters, your characters can move, the scene change… You–and your students–can get super creative!
Here’s an animated GIF of the process, followed by a step-by-step breakdown.
On the Google Teacher Tribe podcast and on his site DitchThatTextbook.com, Matt Miller shared about his recommended use of thought bubbles (and speech bubbles) in Google Drawings. When I first heard it, I thought – “Whoa! What a simple, but powerful application of a technology tool.” Think about it: students being able to comprehend a story or historical event well enough to synthesize the information back into what they predict a character/person may have been thinking or saying? Not to mention, it’s quick and it’s much more engaging that writing it on a worksheet or in a Google Doc. Matt recommends this as a Bell Ringer activity, which I think is an awesome idea, but certainly not the only way it can be used.
This can also be done in Google Slides–it would be neat to have each kid have their own slide–and through the “Insert > Drawing” option on Google Docs. Just like with Google Docs, you can have students make copies of your drawing to add their own thought bubbles or you can use them as assignments in Google Classroom or other LMS’s.
Check it out in the Animated GIF below and then, after the GIF, is a published version of that Drawing, just to show how easy it is to post the completed project.
Google Forms are great for collecting information and delivering assessments, but did you know Forms had some differentiation swag?
Yup, it’s true. Use “Go to Section Based on Answer” with a Multiple Choice question to have right answers and wrong answers lead to different sections. A general mockup of what this could look like, and steps for creating it, are below the GIF.
Add a question with a correct answer and (at least one) wrong answer.
Add a section after that question.
Put your remedial content in that section. YouTube videos work well. You could even make your own video to put in there. You could also include a follow-up question to give your students a chance to re-assess.
Add a section after the remedial content.
Put your next content here. This is the section where students who got the correct answer will land. It will probably also be where you have students who completed the remedial step will land.
Go back to your initial question.
Select “Go to Section Based on Answer.”
Have the incorrect choice(s) go to the remedial section.
Have the correct choice(s) skip to the section after the remedial one.
Sit back and enjoy the differentiated learning experience!
Section 1: includes the question the differentiation is based on
Section 2: the remedial section – whatever content you want the students who got the previous question incorrect to see (video, explanation, follow-up question)
Section 3: the “next step” – the slide that the students with the correct answer jump to, also where the students with the incorrect answers land after completing the remedial section.
Note: you can add multiple levels of this in one Form, but it can get hard to manage. I once created a Form that went: Question 1, Remedial Video & Question 1a, Remedial Video & Question 1b, Question 2, Remedial Video & Question 2a, Remedial Video & Question 2b, etc. As you may guess, I had to create a complex flowchart to make sure I had everything jumping to the correct places.
There are multiple options for creating animations (GoAnimate, Scratch, etc.) but my favorite way to do it is creating Stop Motion Slides. I like that I can make it exactly how I want it in this format. I think this has tons of potential in all subject areas (Please comment or share on Twitter with the hashtag #StopMotionSlides if you come up with any cool uses for it).
There are two main steps:
Create a Google Slideshow where each slide is an incremental change from the previous one (like a flipbook).
Open the slideshow up in Presenter view and use a screencasting tool (i.e., Camtasia, Screencastify, Screencast-o-matic) to record it as a video.
FlipGrid is a platform where (1) teacher poses a prompt or question, (2) students access that “grid” with a code, (3) students record their response, (4) students view each other’s responses and (5) students can comment on or like classmate’s response(s).
Amy’s example of the students showing, describing and explaining Chemistry lab experiments/demonstrations was phenomenal. On her first attempt out of the gate, she went above and beyond the “record a video response” format.
So, I’m getting in on the action. At this link, you’ll see a prompt from me. Hopefully, you’ll also see other professionals’ responses. And, even more hopefully (if that makes sense), you’ll record you response. I can’t want to hear what you share!!
In a training webinar for the PEAR (Partnerships in Education and Resilience) Institute’s DoS (Dimensions of Success) Observation Tool, the facilitators discussed how the 3rd of their 4 domains – STEM Knowledge and Practices – was based on the STEM Practices outlined by the NGSS‘ (Next Generation Science Standards) “A Science Framework for K-12 Science Education.” I think that these 8 practices are fantastic and that schools should place a focus on integrating into the curriculum maps for all content areas, not just science. Here they are: Continue reading STEM Practices