Ditch That Textbook Podcast :: Education, teaching, edtech :: #DitchPod
By Ditch That Textbook
Helping you teach with less reliance on the textbook through technology, creativity and innovation. Hosted by Ditch That Textbook author Matt Miller.
164: Digital bell ringer activities to kickstart class
Ditch That Textbook Podcast :: Education, teaching, edtech :: #DitchPod • By Ditch That Textbook • Mar 06, 2020
164: Digital bell ringer activities to kickstart class
Ditch That Textbook Podcast :: Education, teaching, edtech :: #DitchPod • By Ditch That Textbook • Mar 06, 2020
189: Two words to guide your remote teaching and learning
Back to school is getting close. And as we get closer, many educators are thinking about how remote learning fits into their teaching plans. As we make those plans and create strategies, there are two important words to keep in mind, and how we balance them will have a lot to do with our students' success. In this episode, we will talk about those two things and how we can use them successfully.
July 29, 2020
188: Press record to give students instructions
There are lots of digital tools out there to help students record their thinking. video tools. Audio tools. There's a lot to choose from. but what if we, as teachers, use some of those tools to give our students instructions? This could be especially important during remote learning. In this episode, I'll talk through the idea, which was first shown to me by fellow educator Holly Clark.
July 28, 2020
187: A fun tip for recording remote learning videos
When we do instruction remotely, it's nice to be able to record videos for your students. You can record instructional videos, daily check-in videos, announcements, and more. Lots of educators are using Flipgrid (flipgrid.com) for this. In this episode, I share a couple of quick tips to level up your videos for your students on Flipgrid.
July 27, 2020
186: Awesome Teacher Summer #3: Google/Microsoft training
Are you a Google-using educator or a Microsoft-using educator? Both companies offer training for educators that goes WAY beyond simple support pages. Google has the Google for Education Training Center, which helps you get Google certified and provides courses for learning their products. The Microsoft Educator Center offers lots of courses on a wide variety of topics -- on Microsoft products and others. In this episode, I'll tell you all about them both.
May 27, 2020
185: Awesome Teacher Summer #2: Global EdTech Academy
Imagine a conference you could attend that had lots of really, really good presenters. Imagine they were presenting on lots of topics that really interested you. Now imagine that conference happening for free, every day, and virtually. That's the idea behind the Global EdTech Academy, a project by CUE and Microsoft. They include lots of presentations, master classes, and office hours you can attend for free. In this episode, I'll tell you all about it and where to get signed up!
May 26, 2020
184: Awesome Teacher Summer #1: EdTech tools
Summer is a great time for us to renew and recharge. But once we have, sometimes we want to level up our teaching skills. In this episode, I'll share a handful of courses you can take on edtech tools that will widen your teaching repertoire.
May 25, 2020
183: Student-created unboxing videos
YouTube has some pretty fun videos to watch. That should be no surprise. it is the second largest search engine in the world! YouTubers have found very creative ways to engage their viewers. We can look to YouTube for inspiration on the activities we ask our students to do! In this episode, I share a fun idea for your next video activity with your students -- The unboxing video!
May 21, 2020
182: 10 options for online whiteboards
I love having a whiteboard to write on whenever I'm in a classroom! But when we are doing remote learning, or when we want to engage students in digital spaces, sometimes the whiteboard doesn't translate into those spaces easily. What can we do? In this episode, I will share lots of options for recreating a whiteboard in digital spaces.
May 20, 2020
181: A FREE remote learning online course!
We have had to do a lot of adapting and learning in a short period of time with our adjustments to remote learning. To help provide some ideas and solutions going forward, I have created a free online course about remote learning. in this episode, I will tell you what to expect if you enroll and a little bit about what you might learn.
May 19, 2020
180; Tech Like a PIRATE is out!
After a hiatus of more than a month, I'm back! My new book, Tech Like a PIRATE, is now finally available! In this episode, you will hear all about it. Plus, I will share where you can find lots of free resources whether you buy the book or not! Plus, you can read the "lost chapter" of the book, the one I wrote that didn't make it in print!
May 18, 2020
179: No-internet remote learning (part 3)
when all of our students don't have equal access to the internet, what can we encourage them to do to keep learning going? In this episode, the third in a series of activities you can do with no internet, I share four final ideas to help keep the learning going and help students develop themselves as learners.
April 09, 2020
178: No-internet remote learning (part 2)
When students don't have equal access to the internet, what's a teacher to do? There are lots of options for students who don't have regular access to the internet. We can encourage them to do certain activities that will help them grow in our content areas and as lifelong learners. In this episode, we will talk about three more ways to build our learners without focusing on the internet.
April 08, 2020
177: No-internet remote learning (part 1)
If your students don't all have equal access to the internet during remote learning, you are not alone. Many educators have concerns about the equity of access during remote learning. However, there are still lots of activities students can do to advance their learning and make themselves better learners. In this episode, I will share three ideas to keep learning going and help students develop themselves as learners from home.
April 07, 2020
176: An app for your daily gratitude
Could you handle a little extra happiness in your day? I recently found an app that helps you track and reflect on what you are grateful and happy for. This could be a great tool for us as educators. It could certainly help our students. And the prompts inside of it could make for great discussions and reflections for students!
April 02, 2020
175: What do students need from us now?
With the world changing -- and our class situations changing -- during this time of pandemic, what do students need from us? Their needs may be different than they were when we were last face-to-face in class with them. On the OnlineLearningIdeas.com website, Holly Clark and I discuss five things we think students need from their teachers right now. In this episode, I summarize those five things.
April 01, 2020
174: What to do on video calls (Part 2)
lots of educators are using video calls to do remote learning. But once you and your students are on a video call, what can you do? In the previous episode, I shared three ideas. In this episode, we take it to the next level with three new ideas!
March 31, 2020
173: What to do on video calls (Part 1)
lots of educators around the world are connecting with their students through video calls. There are lots of different platforms to use. But once you get on a video call, what will you do with your students? There's so much more to it then direct instruction! In this episode, I share three ideas for using video calls with your students.
March 30, 2020
172: Step by step instructions without video
When we want to give students step by step instructions, sometimes we turn to a screen recording video. Those videos are clear, but they can be big files that are hard to access for students with slow internet speeds. An alternative that uses very little data is Iorad, a tutorial tool that lets you create web-based instructions. In this episode, I share how you can use Iorad to give students instructions.
March 27, 2020
171: Recording video for slow internet speeds
When students have a slow internet connection at home, remote learning can be difficult. It's especially difficult if teachers are providing large video files for them to watch. there are some steps we can take as educators to make those videos smaller and still effective. In this episode, I share a trick for creating smaller video sizes that will work better for students with slow internet speeds.
March 26, 2020
170: eLearning activities: #3 video activities
if we want to keep learning going at home, having some ideas for learning activities can be helpful. In this four-part series, I am sharing some activity types that you can use when your students are learning from home. In this episode, I share a handful of video activities and video tools that students can use. There are even options when students don't have regular internet access at home!
March 19, 2020
169: eLearning activities: #2 creative slides ideas
there is so much that students can do to learn from home! Whether they have internet access or not, slide presentations offer lots of options. And they don't have to look like the standard oral reports we have done on slides for years! In this episode, I share lots of creative ideas for using slides to demonstrate learning.
March 18, 2020
168: eLearning activities: #1 graphic organizers
As we try to wrap our brains around what distance learning looks like, it's helpful to have some ideas and examples. In the next four episodes, I'm going to share several different types of activities you can provide students while they are learning from home. In this episode, we talk about the power of graphic organizers to help students navigate their thinking instead of just recall facts.
March 17, 2020
167: Empowering students to own learning
When students take control of their learning, amazing things can happen. They go from being compliant followers to commanders of their own future. In his session at the NCTIES Conference, author John Spencer shared tips from his book about how to empower students. He encourages teachers to move up the spectrum from compliance students to engaged students to finally empowered students.
March 11, 2020
166: Finding game hooks to use in class
We love games, and so do our students! When we can pull elements of games into class, it has potential for great engagement. North Carolina educator Chris Goodson shares some of his favorite game hooks in this episode. With some of his ideas, you may spark your own ways to make learning more like a game!
March 10, 2020
165: Creating in VR with Darcy Grimes
virtual reality is beginning to spread, and so many of its uses have to do with consumption. What if students were able to create with VR? Darcy Grimes, a North Carolina educator and former state teacher of the year, shares how Google Tour Creator can help students learn how to create in virtual reality. You don't even need any fancy gear to make it happen!
March 09, 2020
164: Digital bell ringer activities to kickstart class
The beginning of class is a crucial time everyday. Those first several minutes can set the tone for the entire day of instruction! If we want to make the most of those minutes, we can give students learning activities that really engage them and stimulate them. And our digital devices can help! In today's episode, I share several ways to kick off class with digital bell ringer activities. I'll also share the blog post -- with a free ebook and a tutorial video! -- where you can find 20 of them.
March 06, 2020
163: 10 WEEKS of freebies for my new book!
My new book is coming out in April, and I want to celebrate by giving you lots of great free resources! The book, Tech Like a Pirate, shares how we can create memorable learning in the classroom with technology. It will be lots of fun! For the next 10 weeks, we will be sharing lots of free resources on the Ditch That Textbook blog. They will be related to each of the eight ways to Tech Like a Pirate. In this episode, I'll tell you more about it and where you can find those resources!
March 05, 2020
162: 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon/connection makin'
Have you ever heard of the "6 degrees of Kevin Bacon" game? You're supposed to be able to connect any actor to Kevin Bacon with no more than six connections to other actors. Making connections can be a powerful classroom activity! Nate Ridgway, my co-author in the book Don't Ditch That Tech, has shared a whole folder of templates that help your students to do this. In this episode, I'll tell you about this activity and where you can get those templates!
March 04, 2020
161: Making infographics with Adobe Spark
Infographics are very brain friendly. They blend together visuals and text in a way that's very sticky for the brain. I recently found a video tutorial by Claudio Zavala that shows how to create those using Adobe Spark Post. In this episode, I will share a few of the tips I learned from his video and show you where you can watch the whole thing on YouTube.
March 03, 2020
160: Social media hooks for classroom use
many of our students are very interested in social media. We can tap into that excitement and enthusiasm, and we don't even need students to use those apps! There is an inherent draw that every social media platform has that gets us interested in it. If we know what that draw is, we can infuse our lessons with it. In this episode, I share a few of those draws that I see in a variety of social media.
March 02, 2020
159: 5 Chrome extensions to check out
Chrome extensions add extra super powers to our Google Chrome web browsers. Teachers and students all over reap the rewards of them, too! In this episode, educator Michael Bertoni shares A few useful Chrome extensions from his presentation at the PETE&C Conference In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
February 26, 2020
158: Podcasting in the classroom with Heather Kelly
Podcasting is on the rise. When we use it in the classroom, it gives students a voice. They are able to create with what they learn. Teacher Heather Kelly has seen great benefits from podcasting in the classroom with her students. In this episode, she shares the simple way she is publishing her students' audio work and tips for helping reluctant students to dive right in.
February 25, 2020
157: Promoting a solid democracy in schools
We want students to be good citizens and productive members of society. But how can we advocate responsibly for the democracy that we all hope for? Pennsylvania teacher Mike Soskil (Twitter: @msoskil) is the editor of a book that will be published soon. It collects thoughts from classroom teachers and academics about this subject. In this episode, Mike shares a couple of things we can do from the classroom to promote a solid democracy.
February 24, 2020
156: A good fake news self assessment
It can be tricky to discern fact from fiction these days. It can be even trickier to help our students navigate the digital waters of fake news and fact. In this episode, I share a good fake news self-assessment. It comes from the book Fact vs Fiction: Teaching Critical Thinking Skills in the Age of Fake News by Jennifer LaGarde and Darren Hudgins.
February 21, 2020
155: 5 FREE virtual field trips to check out
Virtual field trips are so much fun. We can take our students to places all over the world without leaving the comfort of our classroom. Thankfully, lots of these virtual field trips are available for free. They include live video calls with people in museums, historic sites, and national landmarks all over the United States and beyond. In this episode, I will tell you about five great virtual field trips and where you can find more. Did I mention that they are free?!?
February 20, 2020
154: Student podcasts in Google Slides
Voice is on the rise. Podcast listenership continues to grow. Smart speakers are selling like hotcakes. With all of this buzz around audio content, maybe now is the time to incorporate podcasting in your classroom. However, it doesn't have to be complicated. You can do it with a simple tool you may already use -- Google Slides -- and a free audio recording tool. I ran across a blog post by Jen Giffen (@virtualgiff) and love her solution for it. In this episode, I will share the steps that Jen provides for podcasting with Google Slides. Link: http://virtualgiff.blogspot.com/2020/02/podcasting-in-classroom.html
February 19, 2020
153 Your Google Classroom secret power
We use Google Classroom to assign, collect, grade, and return work with students. Many teachers will use Google Classroom in a web browser on their laptop or desktop computers. But have you tried the Google Classroom mobile app? It has a couple of superpowers that the regular browser version does not. In this episode, I'll tell you about two of those features and why they are really helpful.
February 18, 2020
152: Google Slides templates and fixing them
As teachers, a lot of times we like to assign students work using templates. Google slides is a great choice for doing that! But what do you do when students make mistakes and need to go back to a previous version? In this episode, I talk to Maria Sohn, who teaches technology and stem. She has a couple of unique ideas to share!
February 17, 2020
153: Ask this question for better results
I ran across a really helpful question in a post on Twitter. It may help you, too!
February 14, 2020
152: Upgrade that textbook with augmented reality
Augmented reality is showing up in more and more schools all over. But how can we use augmented and virtual reality in meaningful ways in the classroom? I love the approach that David Saunders used to upgrade 9th grade history textbooks with augmented reality. I found this example in the book Reality Bytes: Innovative Learning Using Augmented and Virtual Reality by Christine Lion-Bailey, Jesse Lubinsky and Micah Shippee.
February 13, 2020
151: Classroom tech: Should I use it?
When I was a beginning teacher, I thought that technology use in the classroom was good no matter what. It didn't take me long to change my views on that, though. When we use tech in the classroom, we have to ask ourselves, " How is it improving learning? " In today's episode, I share a few questions we can ask ourselves to see whether we should be using technology in our lessons.
February 12, 2020
150: More Google Classroom organization ideas
Your Google Classroom can get pretty organized sometimes, can't it? This is a pain point for so many who use it and other learning management systems! A couple of little tips can go a long way to getting it neat and tidy. At the TCEA conference in Austin Texas, I hosted a session on organizing your Google Classroom. Some of the suggestions from the participants were fantastic! I share them in today's episode. To catch the session resources from that presentation, go to http://ditchthattextbook.com/organize.
February 11, 2020
149: A new social media for educators
So many of us educators turn to Twitter and Pinterest to get ideas and connect with each other. But there's a new social media that's developed specifically for educators that's coming out soon. in this episode, I interview one of the founders, Michael Crawford, to get all the details.
February 10, 2020
148: Bringing tech into the library
Libraries in schools are getting a makeover. They don't just have to be a room full of dusty books! Kelly and Crystal from Pasadena, Texas, share how they're using technology to engage students in their media center.
February 07, 2020
147: Flipgrid, information literacy and coaching
I'm at the TCEA conference in Austin, Texas! There's a lot to learn here. In this episode, I share several of my key takeaways from the first day.
February 06, 2020
146: You CAN do that with Microsoft! with Scott Titmas
Many times, when we see the cool things that teachers are doing with Google products, we might assume that the same things can't be done with Microsoft. But that's not necessarily the case! Scott Titmas Share some of his favorite tips and tricks for making Microsoft products work for you in the classroom.
February 05, 2020
145: Offering custom PD with Stacy Saia
teachers love to have choices in their professional development as much as students love to have choices in their learning! In this episode, Stacy Saia shares how her school district is giving teachers choice and how they learn professionally -- and how they are reaping great rewards from it.
February 03, 2020
144: Social media-inspired learning without the app
So many of our students are fascinated with social media. any mention of one of their favorite apps can instantly grab their attention. We can pull elements of social media into our learning activities to engage those students! In a recent post on the Ditch That Textbook blog, We shared several templates and websites that can help you accomplish that!
January 31, 2020
143: Real-time classroom translation for free
In so many schools around the United States and the world, we see a wide variety of native languages. Providing support to students and their families in their own language can pay great dividends in student learning. The Microsoft translator app lets educators connect with students and their families in their native languages and a wide variety of circumstances. In this episode, I share four places where it can strengthen family communication and instruction.
January 30, 2020
142: Brain-based ways to reach diverse students
Understanding how the brain works and learns can help us teach and our students learn with more power. Understanding that each student's brain doesn't learn the same way is important, too. In Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain by Zaretta Hammond, she shares how we can understand culture, how it is wired into our students' brains, and how we can reflect that in our teaching.
January 29, 2020
141: Three phases of learning for the long term
When we learn how the brain prefers to learn, We can learn smarter instead of harder. I got so much valuable information and insight from the book Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain by Zarretta Hammond. in it, she talks about how we can teach in a way that recognizes all students in our classes and optimizes learning for their brains. in this episode, I share her insights on the three phases of information processing.
January 28, 2020
140: Take the Flipgrid 5 for student accessibility
When students take activities home to do, sometimes they struggle. Sometimes the parents struggle! To add a layer of assistance to your activities, you might try what Nate Ridgway calls the Flipgrid 5. It's an easy way to add a short instructional video to paper-based assignments that you give your students. You can learn more about it on his website, TeachingFromTheRidge.com.
January 27, 2020
139: Free music/sound effects for class projects
Lots of students do media projects when they need music or sound effects to make them sound their best. The YouTube Audio Library is a great source of downloadable songs and sounds.
January 24, 2020
138: 3 things I'm loving about Quizizz now
Quizizz is one of several formative assessment tools that teachers are using all around the world. After loading it up recently, I noticed a few newer features that really impressed me. in this episode, I'll tell you what those features are and why you should be excited about them, too.
January 23, 2020
137: Being bored and brilliant in class
We have so many mechanisms in our life to keep us from boredom. We check our phones. We listen to music and watch TV. But our brain likes to be bored! It does it's best thinking that way many times. I recently heard author Manoush Zomorodi talking about this idea on the Vrain Waves podcast and had to share some of my takeaways from it!
January 22, 2020
136: Four tools to check out from #fetc Tech Share Live
During the FETC Conference, there were lots of tools and apps shared in a variety of sessions. During the Tech Share Live, The four prisoners shared some of their favorites. In this episode, I have picked four of them that are super interesting to me!
January 21, 2020
135: The optimal times to do different types of work #fetc
When is the best time to do analytical work? Or administrative tasks? Or insight work? In his book When -- and in his keynote address at the FETC Conference -- author Dan Pink shared what science knows about how to optimize our day. There are fascinating takeaways from it for the classroom and for our daily lives.
January 20, 2020
134: Timing matters in schools from Dan Pink #FETC
Timing is important in so much that we do in schools, whether it's the start of the school day or when we do different types of academic work. In his keynote at the FETC conference, author Dan Pink shared how schools and education can make better decisions on when to do certain things in schools. his insights were fascinating, and I share a few of them in today's episode.
January 17, 2020
133: Learning space design with Bob Dillon
When designing our learning spaces, many times we think about going to Pinterest before we think about turning to research. In today's episode, The Space co-author Bob Dillon shares some practical things you can start doing right away to optimize your classroom for solid student learning.
January 16, 2020
132: Google Slides: Copy selected slides
If you use Google tools very often, you are probably familiar with the feature to make a copy. You can find it under the file menu. In Google Slides, there's a new feature. Make a copy of a slide presentation and only take the slides with you that you need. In today's episode, we hear how to do it and how you might be able to use it.
January 14, 2020
131: Building relationships by being close
We all know the importance of building those close relationships with our students. But did you know that being close in proximity helps us develop relationships too? Neuroscience tells us that being in personal space, between two and four feet from a person, can help us develop relationships. How often do we take the time to communicate with our students on that personal level?
January 13, 2020
130: 2 ways to mix up your Flipgrid activities
Flipgrid lets students respond to a topic or a prompt with a short video clip. Many times, teachers simply ask a question And have students respond to it. What if students recorded those video responses with a new twist? How can we look at those video responses through a different lens that lets students play a different part? I have a couple of ideas you can try!
January 10, 2020
129: 2 tips to start gamification in your class
Lots of teachers have seen great success with gamification. they incorporate the elements of games into their classrooms. If you haven't tried this and are thinking about it, you might be overwhelmed with getting started. You might worry that you don't have all of the pieces in place. In her book, Make Learning Magical, Tisha Richmond offers these two tips to encourage you to give it a try anyway.
January 09, 2020
128: Get busy on what you want to be known for
It's so easy to get distracted by small tasks ... The kind of things that don't move the needle in the right direction in our lives. For me, that means emails, social media, meetings, and other things. It's important to keep the first thing as the first thing. This quote that I share in today's episode really reminded me to keep my priorities straight.
January 08, 2020
127: 5 ways to start with AR/VR in class
Have you heard some of the buzz about augmented reality and virtual reality? they are starting to make more and more of a presence in the classroom. During the Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit, Jaime Donally shared some of her favorite apps and ideas for using augmented reality and virtual reality. In this episode, I share some of her suggestions so you can check them out yourself!
January 07, 2020
126: Iorad: quick tutorials and instructions
If you need to create quick tutorials or instructions for students or parents, You definitely need to check out Iorad. This app creates tutorials on the web, not as a video, so the creation process is really fast and it isn't as data intensive. Use these to give students differentiated instructions for activities and even to share with parents too.
January 06, 2020
125: Part 2: Avoiding the "gotcha" game on tests
When we only ask students a select few questions on a quiz or a test, it can lead to a game of gotcha. It's almost like we say, gotcha! I figured out what you didn't know! Instead, how can we create assessments that encourage students to show us what they know? in the last episode, I shared a couple of strategies to use. Today, I share two more.
January 01, 2020
124: Part 1: Avoiding the "gotcha" game on tests
When we give traditional quizzes and tests, it's easy to play a game of gotcha with students. By asking only a select few questions, we are penalizing students for what we caught them not knowing. Instead, we could be empowering them to show us what they do know. In this episode, I'll share a couple of strategies for making that shift on your assessments.
December 31, 2019
123: Making memes in class with Google Drawings
Memes have become so commonplace in social media and online. They can be a great learning tool! They can help students find the essence of what they're learning, expressing it with brevity and a bit of humor. Learn how to help students make memes quickly and easily using Google Drawings. This idea was shared in my presentation in the Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit (DitchSummit.com).
December 30, 2019
122: Tech Like a PIRATE
Don't just teach a lesson. Create an experience! When I read that line in Dave Burgess's book, Teach Like a Pirate, it changed the way that I would teach. I started thinking about ways to teach that way with technology and the list grew and grew. This spring, I will release my newest book, Tech Like a Pirate, with tons of ideas you can use in class tomorrow!
December 27, 2019
121: Organize your Google Classroom
Is your Google classroom a mess? Wish it could be more organized? there are a couple simple strategies you can use to take control! Your students will thank you when they can find what they need quickly.
December 26, 2019
120: What are your big wins?
do you ever stop to think about your big wins? You know, the things that have gone really well over the last day, week, or month? or the last semester? Or your entire career? It's so easy to get wrapped up in our to do list and think about what we haven't accomplished instead of what we have.
December 25, 2019
119: What kind of culture are you promoting?
in a presentation during the Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit, Toney Jackson talked about using rap, poetry, and hip hop in his classes. He encourages his students to have a creative outlet, and he does that purposefully through the culture he is creating in his classroom. Have you thought about the kind of culture that you are creating in your own classroom?
December 24, 2019
118: A network full of podcasts to check out
You may have noticed at the beginning of every episode that I mention that I'm a member of the Education Podcast Network. The EPN is a great resource full of great educational podcasts to check out. there's a huge variety of topics, and I'm sure there's something that will be right for you. In today's episode, I talk about some of the great shows in the network.
December 23, 2019
117: The podcast about podcasts
I learned so much from listening to podcasts. I can listen to them while I'm working out, while I'm on the road, or while I'm mowing the grass. There are so many great educational podcasts out there! I wanted to share a handful of my favorites in case you wanted to subscribe and listen to them as well.
December 20, 2019
116: The "tech upgrade" with interactive posters
Sometimes, teachers who are reluctant to use technology don't know where to start. We know that we don't want to Substitute what we used to do with a digital version of the exact same thing. Learning doesn't improve that way. However, we can take an activity those teachers are comfortable with and do a tech upgrade. In this episode, I talk about an example of a tech upgrade -- multimedia interactive posters with Google Drawings.
December 19, 2019
115: Why OneNote is my notetaking app of choice
I'm a big fan of taking notes on paper notebooks. I have used a variety of digital note-taking apps. However, this one app is changing my mind about how I take notes and keep them organized. That app is OneNote (OneNote.com). It's available for free. Plus, the ability to draw freehand with a stylus or pen is fantastic.
December 18, 2019
114: Who's speaking at the DTT Digital Summit?
The Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit is a free online conference for teachers. Watch inspiring, practical videos. Get certificates for PD credit. In this episode, you'll get to know the speakers in the summit! Register: ditchsummit.com
December 17, 2019
113: Instead of note taking, RETRIEVE taking
When you're a student, it's tough to things at once -- like listen to a teacher and take notes. You can't give your full attention to either one. with the practice of retrieve taking, students give their undivided attention to listening and then give their full attention to taking notes. It's an idea from the book Powerful Teaching that will be featured in the Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit. Register at DitchSummit.com.
December 16, 2019
112: Snow days, shaky Wi-Fi and offline access
Sometimes, it's nice for students to be able to without an internet connection. when they are at home or on the bus or somewhere else that doesn't have Wi-Fi, this is where offline access is really valuable. This is especially timely in Indiana, where I live, because of e-learning days for snow cancellations. Here about some options for offline access in this episode!
December 13, 2019
111: NEW creation tools in Google Earth
Google Earth calls itself the world's most detailed globe. It lets you look digitally at 3D maps, zooming in and out and gathering information. To this point, it has been largely a consumption tool. However, with the new creation tools, students can now create with Google Earth. You'll hear all the details and how you can use them in class in today's episode!
December 12, 2019
110: Ditch Summit, a FREE online conference for teachers
It's an online conference for teachers, Netflix style! The Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit brings you dozens of fascinating video presentations. Earn professional development credits for watching them. And do it all from the comfort of your couch in your pajamas! December 21st through January 9th. Register: ditchsummit.com
December 11, 2019
109: Join the Hour of Code Dec 9-15
Coding and computer science are skills that are in demand in the workforce now. Want to encourage your students to learn more about them? The Hour of Code is an excellent opportunity! It takes place December 9th through the 15th, 2019.
December 10, 2019
108: The Ditch That Textbook Podcast is back!
It's been more than a year since I published an episode to this podcast. I'm excited to say that I am back! The podcast will feature short daily episodes with tips, tricks, ideas and more.
December 09, 2019
107: Keyboard shortcuts to save you time
Minute by minute, you can buy back time for what matters most with keyboard shortcuts. In this episode, I share some of my favorites that you can use to make yourself more efficient!
September 21, 2018
106: How does storytelling fit in your lesson?
There's a story in everything. Our brains are wired for story. How can we incorporate elements of storytelling into teaching and learning?
September 20, 2018
105: How to "mixtape" your curriculum, 80's style!
We used to use cassette tapes to record our favorite songs on "mixtapes" that we'd listen to over and over again. (At least I did.) Instructional coach Stephanie DeMichele suggests that we "mixtape" our instruction! She offers a framework for doing it, too.
September 19, 2018
104: Repetition suppression: The case for novelty
Drive the same route to school for a while and you'll do it on autopilot. Why? It's easier on your brain that way. It can ignore what it's doing. That's "repetition suppression": you ignore what you do repeatedly. This isn't a good thing in the classroom. We don't want students to ignore. This makes the case for novelty!
September 18, 2018
103: FREE Ditch Summit presentations. Hurry!
Until Sept. 21, 2018, eight FANTASTIC video presentations are available at DitchSummit.com! You'll get practical ideas and inspiration from all of the presenters. But don't worry if you miss it. There's a Ditch That Textbook Digital Summit every December. Head to DitchSummit.com to sign up for updates so you don't miss it!
September 17, 2018
102: The power of the pause
When we're teaching or presenting, we get in a state of speaking flow. The ideas are coming and we're spitting them out. But many times, we're moving faster than our listeners can process. A pause is a breath of fresh air and some mental processing time. It's powerful!
September 14, 2018
101: Some focus in the middle of digital distractions
Students get bombarded by media and messaging all day long. Cell phones. Social media. Videos. And the communication that comes through all of them. How can they maintain a balance and live their best lives? Michigan educator Paul Murray has some suggestions.
September 13, 2018
100: Lessons from 100 podcast episodes
Wow, 100 episodes! It's been a fun learning experience for me, and I hope it has been for you. I do a little reflection on the creation of this podcast and share three things I've learned from having created it. THANK YOU for being a listener and being on this journey with me. Here's to 100 more episodes -- and more!
September 12, 2018
099: Google Classroom: Differentiate like a NINJA
Google Classroom lets teachers customize their students' learning experiences. But what are the best ways to do that? Michigan teacher Jacqueline Pora (@lasenorapora) shares several clever Google Classroom differentiation ideas that she uses in her class!
September 11, 2018
098: Solid gold lesson planning ideas
Good teaching practices should be at the heart of what we do, and it's definitely at the heart of the HyperDocs framework. Sean Fahey (@SEANJFAHEY) and Karly Moura (@KarlyMoura) took that powerful framework and shared examples of how it could be spread to many areas of instruction with digital tools. Check it out!
September 10, 2018
097: Make learning ADDICTIVE with Brian Romero Smith Sr
When learning is addictive, kids want to come back for more, says Brian Romero Smith Sr. (@brianrsmithsr). But how do we create that addictive learning environment? It all comes down to a few things, Brian says, and he shares them in this episode.
September 07, 2018
096: Tips to make your HyperDocs rock with Sean Fahey
Have you caught on to the HyperDocs craze? Sean Fahey (@SEANJFAHEY) has made lots of HyperDocs in his own classroom. He shares tips to help your HyperDocs succeed in your own classroom!
September 06, 2018
095: Flipgrid + scavenger hunt = Fliphunt!
it's a Flipgrid scavenger hunt! Kathi Kersznowski (@kerszi) tells us all about her newest creation and how we can bring it in the classroom.
August 24, 2018
094: Learning in the pause with Shaelynn Farnsworth
One of our most powerful tools as teachers is silence. It can reclaim students' attention. It can give students space to think. Sometimes, we just don't think of it -- or don't realize its potential. Iowa educator Shaelynn Farnsworth (@shfarnsworth) and I discuss.
August 23, 2018
093: Big changes for student voice with Flipgrid
Flipgrid, the video response tool, is now totally free for anyone. And recently, lots of new features became available. In this episode, we'll outline some of them so you'll be ready to start using them this school year!
August 22, 2018
092: Google Classroom changes, 2018 version
It's August, which means exciting changes to many of the tools we use in the classroom. Google Classroom has a facelift and some new features. We dive into several of them in this episode.
August 21, 2018
091: #EducatorGoals with Keven Rinaman
If you're starting a new school year (or have already started one), goals may be top of mind right now. Keven Rinaman talks about goal-setting strategies and how to have a successful year with them.
August 20, 2018
090: Ditch Those Exams with Stephanie DeMichele
Are traditional exams -- especially standard multiple-choice ones -- serving our students? Can we do better? Stephanie DeMichele, an instructional coach from Ohio, and I presented on this concept at a conference recently and share some ideas from it.
August 17, 2018
089: Firefly Classrooms with Troy Cockrum
Did you ever spend time catching fireflies (or "lightning bugs") as a child? Author Troy Cockrum believes that learning should be more like that, where we capture our students' interests. He talks about the ideas he shares in his recent book.
August 16, 2018
088: A sticky note tech app smash!
We usually use sticky notes in the physical world to gather and save ideas. But by smashing the Post-It app and Google Drawings together, your students can do some unique digital brainstorming. Kelli Lane, a tech integration specialist from Illinois, shares how.
August 15, 2018
087: The Quizizz you never knew ...
Quizizz is a fun, student-centered study tool. Many teachers use it to help students review material they've studied. But other teachers are innovating and using Quizizz in very clever ways. Deepak Cheenath, co-founder of Quizizz, shares some ideas.
August 14, 2018
086: What the work world is begging us for
Sarah Kearns has spent her entire career in the corporate world, now working as Director of Marketing for ViewSonic. Her perspective helps us see what the work world really wants from students and how we can help prepare them for it.
August 13, 2018
085: Ditch That Panel with Lance McClard
Missouri administrator Lance McClard and I participated in a panel discussion at the ISTE Conference in Chicago. Lance shares some of his takeaways and his responses to questions, including: "What happens when everything blows up in your face?"
August 10, 2018
084: Real world connections with Sidekick
What if your students could partner with organizations outside of school? If they could brainstorm solutions to big problems together? Sidekick Education is making that happen. Sarah Shaw shares how all sorts of classes are starting these projects.
August 09, 2018
083: Try the Connected Kahoot!
Kahoot! games don't have to be limited to the students in your classroom. Steve Auslander (of Indiana, USA) and Steve Sherman (of Cape Town, South Africa) share how a video call can turn your traditional Kahoot! game into a "Connected Kahoot!" game.
August 08, 2018
082: Teaching for the long game
Sometimes, the most important things we do in the classroom or school doesn't give us immediate results. We need to focus on the long game, according to Megan Hacholski and Michael Abramczyk.
July 20, 2018
081: The Martians in Your Classroom w/@rachaeledu
The first person to set foot on Mars has likely been born, and there's a chance that she/he is in your classroom. What will that person need as a student, and how do we need to change as educators/schools to provide it? Rachael Mann, author of The Martians in Your Classroom, shares ideas from her book.
July 19, 2018
080: Let's do PD (or class!) at a destination!
One of the coolest professional learning experiences I've seen was at a zoo. We did PD at a ZOO. I got to reflect with Kari Espin and Andi McNair of Region 12 ESC in Waco, Texas, about the experience and how classes/schools could do the same.
July 18, 2018
079: Create easy augmented reality in the classroom
I found an amazing way to merge student art and creations with augmented reality at a recent visit to Region 12 educational service center in Waco, Texas. We talk about how it could be used in schools and the classroom.
July 17, 2018
077: Three FREE online conferences for teachers
Now's the time to get FREE inspiration and ideas online! Check out three "digital summits" -- awesome speakers you can watch from the comfort of home on your time!
July 16, 2018
078: Concerns about "locked mode" in Google Forms quizzes
Google recently announced that teachers could impose "locked mode" when giving students quizzes in Google Forms. This prevents students from switching to other tabs while taking a quiz. Lots of teachers certainly asked for this feature, and I can imagine why. But it feels like a move that moves us in the wrong direction heading into the future of education.
July 16, 2018
076: Co-teaching across the world from your classroom
Mike Pennington learned early in his education career that instruction isn't limited to the teacher standing in the classroom. He shares how he co-taught with teachers beyond his state -- and how YOU can too!
July 12, 2018
075: Awesome animated GIFs with Jake Miller
Animated GIFs are these fun, very useful moving images you see all over social media. But you can make your own -- so can your students -- and they can support teaching and learning! Jake Miller shares his expertise in this episode.
July 11, 2018
074: TONS of places to go virtually with students
Looking for inspiration on using Skype, Google Hangouts and the like in the classroom? Ohio educator Ann Radefeld has plenty of experience and shares her ideas with us!
June 18, 2018
073: Video call guests: Just ask them!
Todd Shriver teaches the "History of the 80s" elective class. There are no textbooks available for that class! He brings the luminaries of the 80s to his students. My takeaway from this episode: you never know who you can get until you ask!
June 15, 2018
072: How to make your OWN Google Expeditions
Indiana educator Ryan Mitchell created an Expedition with his students of their town. He shares how they did it and tips to help it succeed.
June 14, 2018
071: 7 keys to providing stellar feedback
How can we best help students to improve? The late Grant Wiggins provided a fantastic framework and suggested these 7 keys in a post on ASCD.
June 13, 2018
070: The benefits of student feedback
Teachers can be hesitant to let students provide each other feedback. We can't control what they'll say and it takes effort to coach them to do it well. But student feedback is POWERFUL and we should consider all the potential benefits.
June 12, 2018
069: Optimal spacing between reviews
How long is too long between review sessions of old material? How short is too short to be effective? Research has some guidance for us.
June 11, 2018
068: The power of #ISTE18 from home
One of the best professional learning experiences you can get from home in the summer is #iste18 on Twitter. Learn how to tap into it!
June 08, 2018
067: Are you an over-consumer?
Podcasts, blogs, social media, books ... They're all fantastic for ideas and inspiration. But still some point, it's time to do something.
June 07, 2018
065: Research says to ditch that rudeness
It's easy to let ourselves slip, to express our frustration to students (and colleagues) in not so helpful ways. A study shows the negative effects of this and suggests some corrections to help. It's a great reminder.
June 01, 2018
064: Organizing and archiving Twitter with Wakelet
Wakelet will let you save the web -- tweets, social media posts, links, images -- into curated lists. It's great for organizing and storing tweets for later.
May 31, 2018
063: How I make the videos in my online course
Looking for a way to kick up your video creation game? Hear how I created the videos for my online course, Tech to Learn. (More info: http://DitchThatTextbook.com/part4)
May 24, 2018
062: The Create a World Project
What can students do when they've learned about civilizations all over the world? How about create their OWN country in a world created by the class? Texas social studies teacher Ben Lewis caps off his year with this project. Even if you don't teach social studies, this is an inspiring project.
May 23, 2018
061: Several Seesaw tips from the teaching trenches
Alexis Crutchfield, Katrina Yang and Brittany Bondy are believers in Seesaw, a platform for student digital portfolios and parent communications. Hear how these teachers use it in their classes at Sampson Elementary School in Cypress, Texas.
May 22, 2018
060: More power for your Genius Hour
Genius Hour can put a spark in your class, giving students opportunities to pursue their passions. Fourth-grade teachers Kayla Swonke (Twitter: @kaylaswonke) and Lyndsey Kubos (Twitter: @lyndseykubos) share some ideas and lessons from implementing it in their classrooms.
May 21, 2018
059: What's your WHY, and has it changed?
Our why focuses our lives. It's our reason for being. It's easy to lose sight of our why, and many times, our why changes over time. What's your why, and how has it changed over time? It's big questions like these that we tackle in this video: http://ditchthattextbook.com/part3
May 18, 2018
058: Google Forms Quizzes are getting smarter
Google's machine learning is improving lots of its products. Now, it can help us create multiple-choice questions without brainstorming incorrect answers. See how these smarter Google Forms can make your life easier.
May 17, 2018
057: Creating engaging repetitions
Repetitions help students make new concepts permanent. But mindless repetitions are a lot of action without great results. But creating engaging repetitions can make for sticky learning! Learn more about this in the video at http://DitchThatTextbook.com/part2.
May 16, 2018
056: The 50/30/20 model for learning
How can we incorporate more passion-driven learning and more hands-on projects into our classes? I found this advice from Don Wettrick (@DonWettrick on Twitter). It's a framework for crafting our classes. It's an interesting take and one that could have HUGE benefits.
May 15, 2018
055: Avoiding tech overwhelm for students AND teachers
When we let too many digital tools into the classroom, it can be overwhelming for students. And tech overwhelm is DEFINITELY an issue for teachers. Can we find ways to do new things with the tech students are already comfortable with?
May 14, 2018
054: You don't need the app to create the experience
Our students have their favorite websites, apps and digital tools. We don't have to require them to use those apps/sites to get the same experience in class. Recreate the experience without the app! This is one idea from a free video series I'm doing in May. More details: DitchThatTextbook.com/series
May 11, 2018
053: GimKit: Like Kahoot with power-ups
I've stumbled upon a new digital assessment/review tool that shows promise. It's like Kahoot with a store where students can buy power-ups to use in the game. It's called GimKit (gimkit.com). The free version is limited, but it's definitely worth checking out.
May 10, 2018
052: Perfection is the enemy of your goals
It finally happened. I missed a day in my daily podcast. Actually, I missed two. So, according to Jon Acuff's book "Finish", today is the most important day in my podcast goals: the day AFTER perfect.
May 09, 2018
051: Now's the perfect time to reflect
At the end of the school year, it's the perfect time to take stock of what's working and think about different ways of teaching in the future. I talked about this idea on Classroom 2.0 LIVE, a weekly web show at http://live.classroom20.com. Check this one out as well as future episodes!
May 04, 2018
050: Love TED Talks? Teach like them!
TED Talks have inspired millions. How can they influence our classes? Rachael Mann of Teach Like TED talks about how we can empower student voice and help students express their ideas and their learning more effectively.
May 03, 2018
048: You are already teaching coding ...
Some of the fundamentals of computer programming / coding, like if/then statements and logic, are likely already present in your class. By identifying them and changing how you talk about them, you may be able to highlight coding in class without changing much. Code Breaker author Brian Aspinall discusses that and more in this show.
May 02, 2018
049: What do our assessments reward?
How can we create.assessments -- and assess student learning -- that truly demonstrates what they know? Brian Aspinall returns to the show to discuss.
May 02, 2018
047: Making the most of online learning
When we switch our teaching from traditional means to the online world without making modifications, we miss out on the greatest parts of digital instruction. Michele Eaton shares how to make the most of it.
April 30, 2018
046: Escalate or de-escalate? Humanize or de-humanize?
This quote by Haim Ginott had a HUGE impact on me as a young educator. It still speaks to me today. At the end of the school year, it's something we have to keep in mind. We have ENORMOUS power on the climate of our own classrooms.
April 27, 2018
045: 4 teaching skills I learned in the journalism world
I (Matt) didn't major in education in college. It was journalism. I worked several journalism jobs before becoming a teacher. I wouldn't change it, though. Here are some great skills I learned from the journalism world that helped me as a teacher.
April 26, 2018
044: How to create Bitmojis for students
April 25, 2018
043: Hearing from EVERY student
"If you're not hearing from every student in every classroom, you're doing it wrong." What do you think of this quote? Technology can help teachers hear from every student in ways we couldn't before.
April 24, 2018
042: About that ONE kid that's not paying attention ...
It's happened to all of us. A lesson is going great and ONE kid is spacing out -- OR giving you the death stare. That student is all we can think about afterward. Remember that ONE disconnected student doesn't mean failure in teaching.
April 23, 2018
041: Use KQED Learn to learn and share with an audience
Inquiry is a great way to help students own their learning and learn how to pursue their curiosity. KQED Learn is a platform that's set up for students to start exploring, discovering and sharing. It's free and it's ready for you to use immediately!
April 20, 2018
040: The power of lunch with students
I was inspired by a story in the book "The Wild Card" by Hope and Wade King where a student had lunch with different groups of students for an entire month. How could that have a great impact on your relationships with students?
April 19, 2018
039: Battling naughty Kahoot! nicknames
Do you struggle with students creating naughty nicknames in Kahoot! games? Kahoot! has created a new feature to eliminate the temptation of typing a naughty nickname. Check it out and see if it's a good fit for your class.
April 18, 2018
038: Internet access for any assessment?
What would happen if we allowed "open internet access" during any assessment? I saw this question on Twitter from John Eick (@John_Eick) over the weekend and it had me thinking. What would happen?
April 17, 2018
037: 4 tips to live by on Twitter
Social media can be our lifeblood of classroom ideas, inspiration and connections. Here are some suggestions for making the most out of Twitter / social media for educators.
April 16, 2018
036: My daughter Cassie reviews Poptropica!
Poptropica is one of my sixth grade daughter Cassie's favorite games. She makes the case for using it to help kids learn.
April 13, 2018
035: On copy/paste cheating and "making" kids stop
It's so easy to Google almost anything ... especially assignments. Can we "make" students stop? What's the solution?
April 12, 2018
034: Google Apps for Littles: Believe they can!
Littles can use Google tools too! In this book by Christine Pinto and Alice Keeler, they show you how!
April 11, 2018
033: What to do now that Padlet isn't totally free
Padlet, a digital bulletin board-style collaboration tool, recently announced that it is no longer totally free. How should we deal with digital tools we have to pay for?
April 10, 2018
032: Student podcasts with @WeVideo and @Flipgrid
Student voice is a hot topic in education right now. But how can you give students that microphone in an authentic, doable way? Andrew Fenstermaker and his fifth-grade students show you how! Twitter: @a_fenstermaker
April 09, 2018
031: Learning sketchnoting with #Sketch50
Sketchnoting (or visual notetaking) is a very brain-friendly way of learning ... and it's TONS of fun! Hone your sketchnoting skills (and introduce it to your students) with #Sketch50! Check it out at sketch50.org or the #sketch50 hashtag on Twitter.
April 06, 2018
030: Using OK GO's phenomenal music videos in class
The band OK GO has the coolest music videos! There's a lot of math and science behind these videos. They have recently created a fantastic resource for the classroom to help you inspire students academically with their music videos: OKGOsandbox.org.
April 05, 2018
029: Making FUN animated Google Classroom headers
Students that use Google Classroom are greeted by header images every time they log in. Create your own custom Google Classroom header image. To give it some added flair, use animated GIF images to make it move! Hat-tip to Paul West (@pdubyatech on Twitter).
April 04, 2018
028: Using brackets in class with Brackify
March Madness and the men's college basketball tournament has people all over the United States buzzing with excitement. How can we use brackets to carry that excitement over into the classroom? Check out Brackify.com as a free digital tool to use.
April 03, 2018
027: The future of technology in education ...
What's it going to look like? Really, it's anyone's guess how tech will influence education in the future. But an interview with Microsoft's CEO piqued my interest and got me thinking about it.
April 02, 2018
026: Bringing a hip hop program to middle school
How can hip hop influence and inspire students at a middle school in Bronx, NY? The effects can be farther-reaching than you might think. Listen as a principal, musician and filmmaker combine to influence student lives. More info: casadocumentary.com.
March 29, 2018
025: Where to start with AR and VR in the classroom
Augmented reality and virtual reality are becoming a reality for classrooms. Mike Drezek shares some cool ways teachers can start incorporating this cutting-edge technology in class for little to no money. (Mike's Twitter: @m_drez)
March 28, 2018
024: Student connections all over the world
Mike Drezek connected students to India. Those students' worldview was widened. How can you make similar connections? It may be easier than you think. Mike shares some ideas. (Mike's Twitter: @m_drez)
March 27, 2018
023: Introduce your students to penguins and Antarctica
Genny Kahlweiss's students sent a flag to a research station in Antarctica, where it was flown for three days. They video chatted with scientists and named penguins. How cool! How did she do it? She shares how YOU could do these things, too! (Genny's Twitter: @kahlweiss)
March 26, 2018
022: Fabulous @Flipgrid ideas!
Flipgrid's short video response platform has taken the education world by storm. What are some of the coolest ways teachers are using it? Flipgrid's Joey Taralson and Adam Parker-Goldberg share some ideas!
March 23, 2018
021: A full-color yearbook with Google Slides?!?
Can you really produce a whole yearbook with Google Slides? Jennifer Scott's school did, complete with full color and a fancy cover. The total cost: $10. Plus, she has resources so you can do it, too!
March 22, 2018
020: Sharing your brand with Ben and Josh
Branding isn't about making money and being famous. It's about sharing your story and letting people know what you stand for. Ben Cogswell and Josh Harris share how students and schools can benefit from a little branding.
March 21, 2018
019: Alice Keeler and conversation in the math classroom
Alice Keeler says there's something missing from math instruction. It's dialogue. Math is more than putting your head down and completing problems. She talks about what we can do to change that.
March 20, 2018
018: Dave Burgess and March Madness in the classroom
March Madness is upon us, and America will be watching lots of college basketball. How can we use this in the classroom? Dave Burgess, author of Teach Like a PIRATE, shares some ideas you can start using right away. (Dave's Twitter: @burgessdave)
March 19, 2018
017: The afternoon dip, and how it affects students
There's a trough in our thinking abilities in the afternoon. It can have a profound effect: as much as having a couple alcoholic drinks. How can we position students to succeed -- in class and on standardized tests?
March 16, 2018
016: Our digital work doesn't have to be 8.5"x11"
With online documents and slides, we often stick to the status quo for size. If certain work isn't going to be printed -- or displayed on a projector -- why do we keep it in traditional letter size? Here's a case for rethinking our digital working spaces.
March 15, 2018
015: The juice that makes @Flipgrid even better
We spend so much time helping students with their writing skills. Giving them some guidance on speaking can have huge benefits. Here's a model for it, and it works GREAT with Flipgrid.
March 14, 2018
014: The fear of the blinking cursor
Have you ever started a project and got stuck before you ever got started? There are some things we can do to help students overcome that obstacle and get started.
March 13, 2018
013: A small nudge toward growth mindset
Many of us know of "growth mindset" as the idea of "yet" -- I can't do it *yet*. But there are other small adjustments we can make in the classroom to help students better develop growth mindset.
March 12, 2018
012: A fascinating read: How to Fix the Future
How to Fix the Future is a book by Andrew Keen, a self-proclaimed Internet pessimist. He's written five books about how destructive technology has been to our lives, but this book is an optimistic one about how we can act more responsibly for a brighter digital future. It's a great fit if you use or talk about technology in your classroom and/or personal life. (I think that covers most of us ...)
March 09, 2018
011: How voice typing can free up your teaching life
I believe in voice typing! Also called dictation, it's when you speak and your device converts it to text. It's SO much faster than typing with your fingers (or thumbs). Imagine what you could do if you got through your emails or other work just a little faster ...
March 08, 2018
010: Educators -- Do this, DON'T do that in social media
Twitter is the BEST thing that happened to my teaching career. It really saved it. However, there's a balance to be maintained, and if we're careful, Twitter (and other social media) can consume our lives instead of help them.
March 07, 2018
009: Personally created GIFs can make your students' day!
GIFs are super fun. They're those moving image files you see all over social media. There's this fun tool you can use to record your own animated GIFs with your webcam. Add them to student work for feedback, to a class website, to Google files ... almost anywhere!
March 06, 2018
008: Studying the way the brain craves
So often, we encourage students to study by putting info into their brains by re-reading notes and chapters. But brain science tells us it's more effective if we study by pulling info FROM our brains. A great strategy for this is the digital brain dump.
March 05, 2018
007: Push this button for more learning
There's a button we use in many digital learning tools to keep kids from cheating. But it can do more than that! Learn how it can be used to help kids learn too.
March 02, 2018
006: Why you need a class podcast -- and how to make one for FREE
Podcasting is a growing medium. It let's you learn by listening -- consume content -- while doing something else. Students can share learning with an authentic audience by creating a free podcast. Learn how!
March 01, 2018
005: The power of student voice
How can we encourage students to use their voice -- in learning, in positive ways, to make a change -- in class and throughout our lives?
February 28, 2018
004: Google Drawings: Tricks you didn't know!
Google Drawings is a great tool to help teachers and students create eye catching images digitally. There are some cool tricks to it that you might not know. In this episode, we cover some of them. You won't want to miss it!
February 28, 2018
003: Using Story Speaker w/Google Home in class
Story Speaker lets you create interactive "stories" or interactions with your Google Home. Learn how you can create them with NO CODING ... just a Google Doc and this add-on!
February 26, 2018
002: Padlet: New features, new possibilities
Padlet, the web tool that lets you add digital sticky notes to a virtual bulletin board, has been around for a long time. But with new features -- take pictures, record video, and more -- there's more to love than ever. If you haven't checked it out recently, it's worth looking at!
February 23, 2018
001: Welcome to the Ditch That Textbook podcast!
I'm so excited to start this podcast! My goal is to equip, inform and inspire educators five days a week. In this episode, I will tell you what to expect from this show and tell you a little about myself.
February 23, 2018