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.
In Episode 34 of the Educational Duct Tape Podcast, I spoke with Dr. Jared Cooney Horvath, author of Stop Talking, Start Influencing, about both of these goals.
A week after that episode came out, I was joined by dozens of “Duct Tapers” in the #EduDuctTape Twitter Chat to discuss the podcast episode, including these two goals.
Below are some strategies that you can use in your classrooms to increase your students’ ability retain and apply their vocabulary learning. Some come from the chat and others come from the episode. Continue reading Strategies for “Sticky” Vocab Learning!
Over the last few days, I’ve shared some of my most popular content from 2019 (top posts, top Instagram posts, top tweets, top retweets & top podcast episodes). However, it’s important to own the things that weren’t popular or successful. It’s also important to learn from those things!
Here are my top 5 Lessons Learned in 2019!
- Practice like you Play – In October, I was a featured speaker at the Quincy Conference in Illinois. I practiced my presentations on the flight there and a little more at the Airbnb that I stayed at. I thought it would all go great. And it did, except for one detail: my AmazonBasics wireless presentation remote was a hot mess. There were at least a dozen times during the day that it didn’t click when it should have or clicked multiple times when it should have clicked once. I looked so unprofessional. I have since purchased a better clicker (I’m looking at you, Logitech Spotlight 😍) and now I always practice with my remote. This lesson could also be, sometimes you’ve gotta pay more to get good quality.
- Prufreed – Er, Proofread. My Google Translate in Google Sheets #EduGIF has traveled the world (literally). It had more than 85,000 retweets in Indonesia and nearly 90,000 upvotes on Reddit. But I didn’t proofread it before I published it and now it’s too late. There is 1 error in there (the code for German is de, not ge), 1 silly choice (why translate taco from English to Spanish!?) and 1 not-so-great example (it translates bienvenido to you are welcome, rather than welcome).
- Back up your backups! – I recorded a mini-episode of the Educational Duct Tape podcast with my friend Missy Paden at the Educational Duct Tape Workshop in December. I edited it and had it almost ready to publish. It was a great interview. When I went back to publish it, the audio file had disappeared. Poof. I should’ve backed it up. Instead, I ended up publishing an episode where I reflected on the disaster. Multiple people reached out to tell me that they found my reflections to be valuable!
- Check – In May, I interviewed John Sowash for an episode of the Educational Duct Tape Podcast. When I went back a few days later to edit the interview, I discovered that I hadn’t plugged in my microphone and, instead, my audio was recorded via my computer’s built-in mic. Oops! It sounded horrible. I should’ve checked before recording!
- Double-Check! – In August, I interviewed Mike Mohammad for an episode of the Educational Duct Tape Podcast. When I went back a weeks later to edit the interview, Mike’s audio wasn’t there. We must have disconnected before it finished uploading the audio, or maybe there was an error message that I ignored. Fortunately, Mike was willing to re-do the interview a few weeks later. And it’s a good thing, too, because it became the 5th most listened-to episode of 2019.
Here’s to more successes and more lessons learned in 2020! Happy New Year!
The Educational Duct Tape Podcast launched on January 2nd, 2019, which makes TODAY the 1-year anniversary of the podcast. In celebration of its first year, let’s look back at the 5 Most Played Episodes!
I’d love to hear what YOUR favorite episode was! COMMENT below!
Mike Mohammad joined me in episode 28 of the Educational Duct Tape Podcast to discuss 2 questions that an educator might have. One of the topics that we discussed was learner profiles. Mike posed the question, “How can students create a profile of themselves as a learner to share with an audience beyond the classroom?”
While Mike and I did not discuss the it during the show, I want to quickly compare and contrast the terms learner profile and digital portfolio. While there are similarities (both are typically curated by the student, both showcase the students work in school and both are often done digitally) there are also some differences (typically, digital portfolios are a showcase of academic work and growth while learner profiles also often focus on the students’ capabilities, characteristics and aptitudes as a learner).
Regardless of which end result you’re looking to cultivate in your school (learner profile, digital portfolio or a blend of both), there are plenty of tools that you can leverage.
A week after the episode in which Mike and I discusssed this aired, I hosted a Twitter chat about the questions from our talk.
Here are some of the participants’ responses to the question about learner profiles:
Continue reading 8+ Tools for Developing Learner Profiles
In episode 28 of the Educational Duct Tape Podcast, Mike Mohammad joined me for a chit-chat. One of the topics that we discussed was student voice. I posed the question, “How can educators provide opportunities for student voice?”
Mike promptly made the distinction between student voice and student choice. While both are powerful things to leverage in the classroom, they are very different (though we often lump them together, as Mike pointed out).
I think that educators’ definitions for the term student voice are inconsistent – some seem to believe that it simply means
– hearing each student’s answer or thinking
– while others believe that it means empowering the students to have a voice in some (or all!) aspects of their education.
Mike made it clear in his response that he subscribes to the 2nd “definition” of student voice. His response fits with the description that Edutopia uses: student voice involves letting “students’ input and expertise … help shape their classroom, their school, and ultimately their own learning and growth.”
I definitely believe that that is the type of student voice that we want to strive for. In a recent #EduDuctTape chat, educators shared their favorite tool for empowering student voice. It’s important to note that simply using the tool doesn’t provide opportunity for or empowerment of student voice. It’s all about how you use it.
Here are some of their responses:
Continue reading 15+ Tools for Student Voice