This week offers a variety of ways to learn. There are articles for those who like to read, podcasts for those who like to listen, and videos for those who like the visual. They will engage your mind and maybe inspire your creativity, and provide resources, tips, and ideas to engage and empower your students.
If you teach or use current events in your classroom, you might want to check out Flocabulary’s Week in Rap. They have both elementary (grades 3-5) and middle/high school version (6-12) that takes the week’s news and puts it in a rap format. While it does cost to join Flocabulary to access their resources, you can view the videos in The Week in Rap without joining.
History teachers and history buffs will enjoy this next find! I have been listening to and watching webinars on culturally responsive teaching and culturally responsive literature, especially focusing on making sure all voices are heard and represented. In one (I cannot remember which), they mentioned the podcast Uncivil on Gimlet (a podcasting host). Uncivil is a 13-episode podcast where they go back in time to the Civil War for the stories that we did not learn about in (think- left out of) the history books. For more history podcasts, check out my other post, Listen Up.
Speaking of podcasts, in this week’s Shipley PLN Lower and Middle School Edition, you can read and listen to this article and podcast featuring Dr. Bernard Harris, who in 1995 was the first African American to perform a spacewalk. In the 26-minute podcast, An Astronaut’s Guide to Improving STEM Education (and What Space Is Really Like) Harris speaks to STEM education and culturally responsive teaching:
We’ve approached teaching up to this point that we bring in students from many different sectors in different communities and we force them to learn our way.
If you take students’ culture, their backgrounds, into account and teach in a culturally responsive way, then you have a better opportunity for improving their learning.~Bernard Harris
Can you remember what you had for lunch yesterday? If you cannot, you might want to do a little retrieval practice! I have written numerous times about using retrieval practice in your classes. In one of Agarwal’s recent emails, she referenced the Learning Agency’s new videos highlighting retrieval practice in action. Agarwal is part of the Learning Agency, recently launched in 2019. You’ll see and hear how teachers are using dual coding, spacing, interleaving, and more in these short (6-10 minutes) videos. You’ll also find The Science of Learning guides for teachers and students as well as links to TED talks like this one. For more examples of retrieval practice, you can check out their YouTube channel with over 20 videos.
Teachers need to provide numerous opportunities for students to create by providing options and choices for students to collaborate, examine exemplars of creativity, find solutions to problems, use non-traditional formats to consume new information and content, and have the flexibility to put the ideas together to create and express new and better ideasInnovate Inside the Box
If you are looking for ways to incorporate different performance assessments in your classes, check out this post, Student Agency: What Do Students Want to Create to Demonstrate Their Learning? There are some great options and ideas that your students could choose from including presenting a TED talk, creating a movie, and writing a children’t book to name just a few.
Finally, if you are looking for learning opportunities, you should check this out. Harvard’s Graduate School of Education has two-week online workshops beginning next week and continuing through the new year on a variety of topics (for a fee of $149) including diversity and inclusion, culturally responsive literature, and educating global citizens. How did I come upon this gem of an opportunity? My curiosity led me to it!