The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

April 2011 Blog Posts (62)

Debriefing Your Year - Lesson Activity

Get your students to reflect on their year and their content with a neat activity that uses smart phones, QR codes, and movement!

Debrief Your Year…


Added by Brian Thomas on April 29, 2011 at 11:30am — No Comments

My experience with wikispaces and From my guest post on

I have never considered myself to be a techie, but after my school brought Will Richardson in to present, I discovered that I was using technology a lot more than my co-workers. I currently have a facebook page, twitter account, and I am a member of personal learning networks. I have been using the internet to make connections in my own hobby for years. I am a cichlidoit, a tropical fish enthusiast for those who do not have this addiction. I am a moderator on and a…

Added by Michael Dunagan on April 29, 2011 at 9:00am — No Comments

Students' Asking Good Questions

Here in Jasmin Ramzinsky’s   3rd  grade class at Parkside Elementary School in Austin is why education can be turned around on a time by simply challenging students to assume more control of their own learning.


How do they do this?  By being encouraged to ask good questions about the content they are studying and then pursuing what International Baccalaureate calls “purposeful…


Added by John Barell on April 29, 2011 at 8:07am — 12 Comments

Printable Bookmarks with Thinking Skills/Thinking Stems/Summaries

I’ve blogged about the successful use of thinking skills in promoting reading comprehension and the huge increase I saw in reading levels here: Reading Levels Jump 5 Months in just 2.5 Months!  

I started thinking how great it…


Added by Diane Dahl on April 28, 2011 at 7:34pm — 2 Comments


Just finished rebuilding my website which contains ebooks, teaching units of work and other resources for teachers resulting from long experience of education. Too many to reproduce on this site.You are most welcome to visit.

Added by Julie Boyd on April 28, 2011 at 6:00pm — No Comments

Come to an exciting new kind of event

Ink Think Tankpresents its first "Computerside Chat" on 5/10/11 at 7 pm EDT. 

Passionate Voices: Science, Math and 21st Century Skills

It will be live, streaming video and you will be able to ask questions via Twitter #authorsoncall.

For more into, go to the invitation here:

Added by Vicki Cobb on April 28, 2011 at 6:00pm — No Comments

For A Smile to start your day- Why Teachers Tear Their Hair

image1 Why teachers drink

image33 Why teachers drink

image44 Why teachers drink image77 Why teachers drink image55 Why teachers drink

image1111 Why teachers drink image1313 Why teachers drink image1010 Why teachers drink

image1414 Why teachers drink image1212 Why teachers drink

image1515 Why teachers drink

image1616 Why teachers drink

image1717 Why teachers drink image1818 Why teachers drink

image2020 Why teachers drink

image2121 Why teachers drink

image2222 Why teachers drink image23231 Why teachers drink image2424 Why teachers drink image2626 Why teachers drink


Added by Julie Boyd on April 28, 2011 at 5:58pm — No Comments

Envision the "Best-Case" Scenario

I've often wondered why - when faced with the prospect of professional or personal change - people often defer to the worst-case scenario or predominantly envision why something won't work.

Now, while I don't pretend to be an expert on all of humanity, I do believe that it is primarily a way to prevent ourselves from looking foolish.  There are few things in life more aversive than the idea that you didn't think it through or were, in some way, naive about…


Added by Tom Schimmer on April 28, 2011 at 5:24pm — No Comments

A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule The Future- By Daniel Pink

Daniel Pink writes in his book that the way that the world has been ruled for the past 50 or so plus years is not the world of the future.  Currently the world is shifting away from Left Brain dominated society to a society that will hold the six senses in higher regard.  These six senses: Design, Story, Symphony, Empathy, Play, and Meaning, are the skills that the future highly demanded careers will need.  He does not say that the IQ based left brain thinkers will no longer exist, but…


Added by Michael Dunagan on April 28, 2011 at 3:25pm — No Comments

A Visit from USA EMBASSY officer to my school

It is 4.15 pm now in Malaysia.I just had an interesting visitor from USA Embassy officer.The officer is Malaysian and he is contemplating to put my school into consideration to benefit from USA EMBASSY charitable educational programmes.Previously, the embassy had only taken middle schools and high schools under its wings.So,now they are thinking of candidate schools from elementary level.The embassy focuses on English Language Educational programmes by sponsoring teachers and students for…


Added by Sarenawati Jaafar on April 27, 2011 at 4:28am — 2 Comments

Greetings from Malaysia

Hello, I am a principal in an elementary school in Malaysia.My school is a private school.We started the school in 2009 with 30 students from Year 1 (7 years old) to Year 3 (9 year old).In 2010,we had a drastic increase from 30 to 80 students.Presently, we have 120 students.We have also opened classes for 10-11 years old.It is arguable whether it is relevant for me to be here and to learn from overseas school administrators. I've studied cases from schools in North America and almost every woes… Continue

Added by Sarenawati Jaafar on April 27, 2011 at 1:09am — No Comments

A lesson from PBL

Those who have ever attempted to create a Problem Based Learning (PBL) lesson know how difficult it is to come up with a complex, multi-staged problem that directs the students toward learning the subject matter (objective), without explicitly stating it. Have you tried it out?

Without directions, most students get lost. I remember being in university classes at the end of the term and someone would always raise their hand in class and ask “When is the exam? Where? What’s on it?” and… Continue

Added by Erika Podlovics on April 26, 2011 at 8:55pm — 1 Comment

Is Handwriting Like Film Cameras--Our Mother's Generation?

Studies show one in three children struggle with handwriting. I’d guess more, seeing it first hand as a teacher. Sound bad? Consider another study shows that one in five parents say they last penned a letter more than a year ago.


Let’s look at the facts. Students handwrite badly, and don’t use it much when they grow up (think about yourself. How often do you write a long hand letter?). Really, why is handwriting important in this day of keyboards, PDAs, smart phones,…


Added by Jacqui Murray on April 25, 2011 at 10:56pm — No Comments

Each Teacher has the personal responsibility:

Each Teacher has the personal responsibility to:

1.            To develop: Breadth and Depth of Repertoire of Strategies

2.            To create: Capacity to align strategies / learning environments / curriculum / assessment

3.            To build: Sophistication of personal teaching frameworks and ensure fit with broader society

4.            To…


Added by Julie Boyd on April 25, 2011 at 10:08pm — No Comments

The Time Has Come to Drill and Kill

What do you think of this debate?



Added by Neil Finney on April 25, 2011 at 8:55pm — No Comments

Patient Problem Solvers – Ted Talk with Dan Meyers

Let’s face it – not everything that students need to learn in school is easy for them. But wait. If this is knowledge and skills what we want our students to learn, remember, and use in the future (the reason for universal K-12 education right?) then shouldn’t we be teaching them in a way that is intuitive, useful, and easy to remember and use. 

Man Meyers has a great video on Ted Talks called …


Added by Erika Podlovics on April 25, 2011 at 8:05pm — No Comments

What Do Teachers Really Want?


 Speak Up For Education and Kids is a group started by the National Education Association to unite educators and community members committed to investing in education, preventing harmful cuts,…


Added by Lisa Mims on April 25, 2011 at 2:56pm — No Comments

If you don't stand for something. . .


This I believe. . . with an attempt at order. . . but none are negotiable -


10.  Working with kids is a privilege.

The privilege of working with kids is just that – a privilege.  If your heart isn’t in it, you aren’t going to be effective and could probably make a better contribution elsewhere.  If your heart is in it, you are so needed – and you can make the world a better place. 


9.  Together, we are better. 



Added by Barb Holden on April 25, 2011 at 12:49am — No Comments

Celebrating Our Connected Youth

I have been feeling the need to celebrate our youth!  They are an amazing group of people, and I am privileged to work with them each day.


I am an Assistant Principal, and I am excited about our youth and the potential they have to contribute to this world. . . . also about the contributions they are making now.   There is every reason to be feeling ‘hope-full’ about our youth today.


Each day, when I go to work, I meet young people that are committed to making…


Added by Barb Holden on April 24, 2011 at 11:24pm — 1 Comment

ESL and Web 2.0

Has anyone got any good research that shows that using Web 2.0 skills improves ESL learners?

Added by Lee Webster on April 23, 2011 at 12:54pm — 2 Comments

Blog Topics by Tags

Monthly Archives










Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Sandro Cuzzetto commented on Thomas Whitby's blog post Poor teachers: Who is to blame?
"This is fantastic. As a new Principal at a school, and one whose Master's thesis was based specifically on the difference between how adults and students use technology, this article speaks volumes to me. I love the idea of determining the…"
14 hours ago
Jason Rukman commented on Jason Rukman's blog post Try out Itch. Scratch in a safe, online learning environment with video lessons for your students.
"Thanks Jalyn, Let me know if you're interested in a trial teacher account and I'll get you set up (You can also just try out the courses as well)!  "
David Chiles posted a status
"Principles of Netiquette Book Crowdfund Campaign via @gofundme"
Tracy Brady updated their profile
Natalie Marie Lopez updated their profile
Nov 20
Harry Zepeda posted a blog post

Do you have a spending problem?

Shopaholics do not agree to the fact that they are shopaholics until and unless they are forced to agree that they are affected by the addiction of shopping, and they need to do seriously something about it so that they do not waste their entire savings and cry about it on a later date. In this post, we will help you spot the problem and if you spot the issue, go ahead and look for a remedy so that you get enough time to be at ease in the future. 1.    Your credit card balance is always close…See More
Nov 20
Natalie Marie Lopez posted a blog post

Are there any great websites for K-12 students?

Hello Collective wisdom!I wanted to know if there were any great websites anyone can recommend for elementary school students (K-12) that introduce primary sources?With Common Core State Standards, I notice students are introduced to primary sources in the 3rd grade and there is a local history assignment at one of the schools I talked to.  Know any good introductory sites?  I'm currently building one as part of a project for my multimedia course and would like to look to the left and right for…See More
Nov 19
Joyce Matthews posted a blog post

"I am the greatest"

I was 6 when I decided I wanted to be a PE teacher. A lively child, I loved taking part in any kind of sporting activity. It was 1971 when I set eyes on our new track suited next-door neighbour. I was hooked. I wanted to be like her. I wanted to go to work in a tracksuit and trainers and play sport all day. No amount of persuasion or…See More
Nov 18

Awards And Nominations

© 2015   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service