Educators’ Syndicate

August 12th 2016

Teaching with technology-05Discussion boards. Google documents. YouTube videos. TED Talks. Khan Academy. These are just a few of the many resources some of us have used in our ever-growing arsenal of techie tools. We want to stay on the cutting edge. The Sloan Consortium (now Online Learning Consortium) predicts this trend toward an increased usage of technology will continue into the foreseeable future. So we continue to hone our skills, taking advantage of an ever-increasing array of technological options. We attend conferences, exchange ideas with colleagues, read up on the latest innovations—all in the interest of keeping our teaching on the technology edge. But I sometimes worry that we may have gone over the edge.

Do you feel the same way? Your comments and suggestions in the Comments Form 01 please:



August 11th 2016

How does “FLIPPED CLASSROOM” work?

Flipped classroom-02There is no single model for the flipped classroom—the term is widely used to describe almost any class structure that provides

prerecorded lectures followed by in-class exercises. In one

common model, students might view multiple lectures of five to

seven minutes each. Online quizzes or activities can be interspersed to test what students have learned. Immediate quiz feedback and the ability to rerun lecture segments may help clarify points of confusion. Instructors might lead in-class discussions or turn the classroom into a studio where students create, collaborate, and put into practice what they learned from the lectures they view outside class. As on-site experts, instructors suggest various approaches, clarify content, and monitor progress. They might organize students into an ad hoc workgroup to solve a problem that several are struggling to understand. Because this approach represents a comprehensive change in the class dynamic, some instructors have chosen to implement only a few elements of the flipped model or to flip only a few selected class sessions during a term.

Your comments/ suggestions please in the Comments Form 01


August 10th 2016

What is flipped classroom & how to create one?

The flipped classroom is a pedagogical model in which the typical lecture and homework elements of a course are reversed.

Short video lectures are viewed by students at home before the

class session, while in-class time is devoted to exercises, projects, or discussions. The video lecture is often seen as the key ingredient in the flipped approach, such lectures being either created by the instructor and posted online or selected from an online repository.

While a prerecorded lecture could certainly be a podcast or other audio format, the ease with which video can be accessed and viewed today has made it so ubiquitous that the flipped model has come to be identified with it.

The notion of a flipped classroom draws on such concepts as active

learning, student engagement, hybrid course design, and course

podcasting. The value of a flipped class is in the repurposing of

class time into a workshop where students can inquire about

lecture content, test their skills in applying knowledge, and interact

with one another in hands-on activities. During class sessions,

instructors function as coaches or advisors, encouraging students

in individual inquiry and collaborative effort.

Do you use Flipped classroom concept in your teaching? Why? Why not? If yes, can you share your experiences in the comments form please?


August 9th 2016

One good teacher said,

“I spent my first two months as a teacher building a paperless, hybrid-online, flipped classroom using Moodle, and marching students through standards by having them click through links and complete digital quizzes and activities. Was I efficient? Yes. Was I engaging students? No.

  1. Good teachers do more than just teach content. When people tell me that they are afraid that computers will eventually replace teachers, I laugh, because the only teacher that a computer could replace is the one who is simply marching students through hoops towards a standardized test.
  2. Good teachers create authentic learning experiences for their students by building rich, performance-based assessments.
  3. Good teachers encourage students to solve problems and take an active role in their own learning.
  4. Good teachers teach skills like critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and curiosity.
  5. Good teachers know how to create learner-driven environments where failure is considered learning and persistence is an expectation.
  6. Good teachers know how to inspire students and build a love for learning that can last a lifetime.
  7. And good teachers don’t necessarily need to use technology to do that.”  

    Do you agree? Do you have more Thoughts on the subject? Can you please put them down in the comments section please?



August 8th 2016

Teaching with technology isn’t just about staying current on the latest tools, it’s about knowing how to successfully incorporate the best tools into your teaching when and where it makes sense. We would like to look at the benefits of using technology, as well as potential stumbling blocks. We also would like to get an inside look at best practices for using technology to enhance teaching and learning – whether we are teaching in a traditional classroom or online.

From the bold honors student to the timid learner in the back row, reflection can help students become more aware of themselves as learners. But because we often rely on writing as the primary mode of metacognitive reflection, some students, especially those who struggle with college-level writing, may not experience the full cognitive benefits of reflection. For such students, the stress of writing can compromise their focus on reflection. Can you suggest ways and means to accomplish this?

Can you give comments and suggestions for the same in the comments form?


August 7th 2016

One of the many strategies from Rebecca Alber.

Creating Questions

If your students are listening to a speech, watching a documentary clip, or hearing a story read aloud, break it up by stopping a few times and having students write a question or two about what they just heard. This way, students actively listen for any confusion or wonderings they may have — this takes a high-level of concentration. It’s important to provide models for this since we are typically trained in school to look for the answers and information rather than to focus on what is not understood or is still a mystery.

Person-one word impression-1-8-16And we do love asking pondering questions. For today’s Question, click on the image and answer in the comments section.

August 6th 2016

How do we make learners listen?

One of the many strategies from Rebecca Alber.

Pay Attention, Pause, Paraphrase

Learners need structured opportunities to restrain themselves from speaking in order to keep their attention on listening, especially when working in groups. Try this strategy:

When students talk in pairs or small groups, assign one speaker at a time only (they can number off).

Ask all others to listen fully to whoever is speaking and to avoid formulating a response while the other person talks. Tell them to simply listen that is all. (This is a difficult task even for adults!)

When the person stops talking, the other takes a breath before she speaks and then paraphrases something her partner just said: “You believe that….” “You aren’t sure if….”.

After paraphrasing her partner, she can then follow that with an “I” statement: “I see what you mean…”, “I’m not sure I agree…”.

Discussion sentence starters are a helpful tool for students as they learn this new way of having a conversation. It’s also incredibly helpful for students to see this in action. Ask a couple of students to model it for the whole class or have an adult visit to partner with you.

drive you-6-8-16Question of the day. Can you please answer in the comments form please?


August 5th 2016

Today we will see another strategy from Rebecca Alber on How to talk so the learners listen.

 Strategy : Student Hand Signals

Asking students to pay full attention and indicating that they will follow this with a non-verbal signal is a wonderful tool for sharpening those listening skills. It can look like this: “I’m going to read a former president’s statement about why he believes war is sometimes necessary. When I’m finished, you will share your opinion by holding up one finger if you agree, two fingers if you disagree, and three fingers if you are undecided or if you have a question.” This strategy allows whole-class participation and response. It’s also a favorite for kids who are more on the shy side, giving them a “voice.”

Intended to do but didnot-2-8-2016The image  asks you a question. Can you answer the same please in the comments form?


August 4th 2016

How do we talk so the learners listen?

Rebecca Alber of Edutopia (she is Consulting Online Editor gives one of her many strategies.

Turn and Talk

One way to inspire active listening in your students is to give them a listening task. It might look like this, “I’m going to describe the process of _________. I will pause along the way and ask you to turn to a partner and explain to them what you heard.” You can ask students to take turns talking each time you pause, and meanwhile, walk around observing their conversations (also allowing you to check for understanding).

Can you think of more such strategies? Do contribute your ideas and suggestions in the comments form.


Today’s video clip is on “Inquire & Inspire. Enjoy.



August 3rd 2016

Self-control separates us from our ancient ancestors and the rest of the animal kingdom, thanks to our large prefrontal cortex. It is the ability to subdue our impulses in order to achieve longer-term goals. Rather than responding to immediate impulses, we can plan, evaluate alternative actions, and, often enough, avoid doing things we’ll later regret. The ability to exert self-control is typically called willpower. It is what allows us to direct our attention, and it underlies all kinds of achievement. There is significant debate in science as to whether or not willpower is a finite resource. Studies demonstrate that exercising willpower makes heavy demands on mental energy, notably on reserves of glucose, the brain’s preferred fuel, creating ego depletion. It’s one reason we’re more apt to reach for that chocolate chip cookie when we’re feeling stressed than when we’re feeling on top of the world.

The value of self control is nicely explained by Swami Sarvapriyanandji. Here is his video clip. View it and enjoy.


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August 2nd 2016

How do we talk so the learners listen, was the question we posed yesterday. Today Rebecca Alber of Edutopia (she is Consulting Online Editor gives one of the many strategies.

Strategy :Say it Once
Repeating ourselves in the classroom will produce lazy listening in our students. If kids are accustomed to hearing instructions twice, three times, and even four times, listening the first time around becomes unnecessary. Begin the year by establishing that you are a teacher who rarely repeats instructions and this will surely perk up ears.

Of course you don’t want to leave distracted students in the dust so for those few who forgot to listen, you can advise them to, “ask three, then ask me.”

Can you think of more strategies? Mention them in the comments section.

Yes, also do not forget to view the interesting video clip “What Questions Did you ask today?”

Where do you think you will use this video and whom would you like to share it with?

Progressive Talents Team


August 1st:

Engaging students in the classroom is one of the major challenges we, as educators face. What strategies should we adopt to face this challenge?

How do we talk so that learners listen?

Please give your ideas in the comments section.

Enjoy the video talk on “Why we should dream big” by Jack Canfield

-Progressive Talents Team