I have spent the last several months really thinking about what the 21st Century Thinking means for me and for schools/classrooms. I have been reading, thinking, and looking for examples of this thinking that fit in with my beliefs about how we learn. I have been on a huge learning curve and am so excited about all that I am finding. Here are some things that I found recently.
GREAT EXAMPLES OF LEARNING IN ELEMENTARY CLASSROOMS
I have been looking long and hard for great examples of authentic uses of technology with elementary students. The samples of quality work is hard to find. I was thrilled to find THE MEDIA SPOT. This is such a great site with information for educators as well as lots of sample videos in many genres that can be used to think about the possibilities and to share with students.
I love this post by Katie at Creative Literacy. Using iMovie: Literacy Alive in the K Classroom. In it she shares a gift that she received from her child's Kindergarten teacher last week--an emailed video of her child reading aloud a book he had written in Writing Workshop. In it, I see so much potential for not only assessment but parent education. With the focus on tests, scores, and numbers, the technology that is readily available now gives us the opportunity to create these types of things to share information with parents. And what a great way to invite conversations at home between parents and students.
I also love this post by Kip about 21st Century Literacies in an Elementary Classroom. He shares his own thinking about technology working in his workshop and shares the things that are working at the elementary level.
Another site with great videos to share with kids and to think about possibilities is SAM ANIMATION. I want to spend some time exploring the software on this site to see what is possible. Some pretty amazing ideas.
POSTS TO THINK AND TALK AROUND
I love this post by Kim Cofino called CONVERSATION STARTER. She shares her thinking: "Using technology in the classroom is a mindset, not a skill-set." Such smart thinking with all of the technology being used for the sake of technology. A great piece to use to think from and to use with colleagues.
Another great conversation starter is the post called IDEO's 10 TIPS FOR CREATING A 21st CENTURY CLASSROOM EXPERIENCE May be a list I start carrying around with me. Some great points about education today.
This post by Doug Johnson called "CONTINUUMS OF LIBRARY USE" has really helped me think about the role of the elementary school library. What should we be moving to and how do we get there. I like this continuum, not only for libraries, but about learning in general.
At BuckEnglish, I read some of the best thinking I've seen around the Paperless Classroom. A paperless classroom is about so much more than saving paper. It is about rethinking the role of the teacher and how the classroom actually works.
IMPROVING THE INQUIRY PROCESS at The Librarian Edge is a post worth spending lots of time on. So much packed into one post about the Inquiry Process, self-reflecting on teaching and learning, etc.
In CHANGING RULES OF THE LITERACY CLUB at Education Week Angela Maiers shares her (very smart) thinking of the changes in The Literacy Club since Frank Smith's first writing on the topic. We can no longer hold onto our old definitions of literacy. What does this mean for us, for our students and for our schools?
JUST FOR FUN
And when I was told that I was "underusing" my iPhone, I put an effort to using more applications, etc. But who knew that THIS was possible?