If you've ever dreamed of making your slide presentation interactive, and thus a lot less boring, than Pear Deck is your tool. This screencast goes through everything you need to get started.
The NewsGuard extension is now installed on all middle and high school student computers to help assess the credibility of websites. Click on the quote below to watch a short screencast about how this indispensable tool works!
Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) was not something I was familiar with when I started my teaching career 13 years ago. But through the years, I’ve had multiple students with challenging behaviors (autism, ODD, OCD, ADHD, etc.) and I had to quickly figure out strategies to help support them in the classroom. I am in no way an expert in meeting the needs of children with challenging behaviors, these are simply suggestions I’ve found to be helpful.
First and foremost, ODD is a mental health disorder and we need to adjust our instruction and/or discipline to meet the needs of that child, as we would for a child with a learning disability, visual impairment, hearing impairment, etc. What we need to keep in mind is that traditional discipline doesn’t typically work for kids with ODD because they enjoy upsetting people around them or like the power struggle. Here are some suggestions on how to support students with ODD, autism, or other challenging behaviors:
Students with ODD can be very challenging, remember you are human and may need a moment to calm down, and that is okay! Reach out to coworkers for support, we’re all in this together.
- Marcie Dodd
by Andrew Ellingsen and Sarah Zbornik, DCSD Instructional Coaches, with Sarah Nowack, DMS 5th Grade Teacher
Last week, 5th grade students in Mrs. Nowack’s reading classes were treated to a special event -- a trip to the “Reading Cafe.” Instead of their normal reading class, students had the chance to explore different genres of books without committing to reading the entire book in an event called a book tasting. (You can read more about book tastings in this blog post or in the others linked there.)
With the help of Sue Sander, the collaboration room was transformed. As students arrived at the “Reading Cafe”, Mrs. Nowack, the maitre d’, showed them to their tables. (Thanks to Sue Sander, LuAnn Schmidt, Miranda McGrath and Deb Edwards for lending their tablecloths and other decorations!)
She then explained that the students would have a four-course “tasting menu” of books, with each course giving students a chance to sample a book from a different genre. Books had been selected by DMS Media Associate Beth Wahlberg. Mrs. Nowack, with help from Instructional Coaches Sarah Zbornik and Andrew Ellingsen, served each student at the table a book from that course’s genre. Students had a few minutes to “sample” the book by reading a few pages and making notes in their menu about their initial reaction. After the fourth course had been served, students were served an egg quiche made by DCSD’s Food Director Chad Elliott.
Students were asked to write down their feedback on the experience at the end of their visit to the Reading Cafe. Here are a few of their comments:
"I present new genres to students about this time every year; one of my favorite methods was genre bingo, but when I happened to stumble across a post of another 5th grade teacher asking about how to do a Book Tasting, I had no idea what she was talking about, but I had to learn more. It didn’t take much research into the topic to know I was going to make this happen! I reached out to Sarah & Andrew to help me pull it all together! I loved making it “fancy” for the kids; it definitely made it more memorable for them! And, best of all, kids walked out of the Reading Cafe with an excitement for new genres of books and lists of new books they want to read!"
Carrie Reed's students are using Grammarly to help them improve their writing and in this screencast she gives us a quick overview of how it works. Every student should have this web extension added to their CHROME browser. (If they don't see any extensions then they'll need to turn on syncing under preferences in Chrome.) Have you used this with students? Is it a useful tool? Share with us in the comments below!
This screencast shows you how Britannica is now embedded in Chrome for all DMS and DHS students. This is such a user-friendly way to find credible and age-appropriate information!
Encouraging database use among students is challenging because there are just SO MANY STEPS: find the AEA website, locate the page with the databases, pick the right database, enter the username and password, search for what you want, and then start all over again with another database! It's a hot mess. Enter Destiny One Search where you can find links to articles right in our library catalog. Watch the video below to learn how.
FOR THOSE PARTICIPATING IN PPD FOR GRADUATE OR RECERTIFICATION CREDIT
Wondering about the steps needed to complete PPD challenges?
Challenge Pacing Dates
Peer Discussion Meetings
Along with the with the challenges, Peer Discussion Meetings are a course requirement. The first set of meeting dates offers four session options.
October 4th - 7-8am @ CLE
October 4th - 3:30-4:30 @ JCE
October 9th - 7-8am @ DHS
October 10th - 3:30-4:30 @ DMS
Requirements for Peer Discussion Meetings:
Recertification Credit: Attend four meeting dates by April 1, 2019.
Graduate Credit: Attend four meeting dates by April 1, 2019.
Banking Challenges: Attend four meeting dates by April 1, 2020.
An individual meeting with a coach may fulfill the requirement of a peer discussion meeting if there is a scheduling conflict. In this case, fill out a coaching request form or email a coach directly.
Submitting Work to Canvas
For each challenge, submit your work in the Canvas PPD course. Make sure you submit work under the correct track (recertification, graduate, or banking).
Course Log on Google Spreadsheet
What should you document on your course log?
written by Steve Peterson, DMS 5th Grade Teacher
Have you wanted to have students share a Google doc with a small peer group? I do this all the time when I want kids to form writing groups or research groups.
Does it take a long time for the kids to enter each other’s names in the Docs SHARE button?
There are so many ways for a Doc to NOT appear in a partner’s shared with me folder. Maybe the name was spelled wrong. Or decorahvikings contained a “c” in front of the “k.” Or someone forgot to put in a “.” between the first and last names.
I know all of the above have happened to me! If I would have any more hair, I would have pulled it out and wept.
This year I had a brainstorm: create a short assignment that asks kids to create a Google Doc and share that doc with everyone in the class. The Doc contains nothing, but the mere fact that it was shared “pre-populates” the SHARE button with all of the student’s emails, correctly written.
Here’s how I did it:
I created an assignment Doc (linked here.) On that Doc I wrote directions for the assignment. Then I generated and copied all of the student emails from PowerTeacher >Class Emails >Build List and pasted them into the assignment Doc.
After that, I had the kids do the assignment as listed in the Doc above and submit it.
Voila! Now when students want to share with someone who was on that list, all they have to do is click SHARE and put the first letter or so of the first name in the People box in Google Docs. A list of recipients shows up. No mess. No worry. No mistakes.
Now, maybe my hair can grow back.
Compiled by Andrew Ellingsen, DCSD Instructional Coach
Welcome back to school! As you’re preparing for students to come later this week, here’s a brief rundown of some first day activities that happened in DCSD classrooms last year! What’s your favorite “Back to School” activity? Comment below and add to the growing list of ideas!
A blog dedicated to discussing instructional practices and reflecting on why we do what we do.
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