Charlotte's Web ThingLink

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Dip into Something New This Summer

“So much to do, so little time,” is most teachers' mantra during the school year. Summertime gives us time to relax and refresh, but also the time to dip into something new. Here are a few suggestions for things you might like to try.

Podcasts can be a great way to keep up on what is new in education. Whether you are doing chores around the house, getting some exercise, or driving, listening to a podcast is a good way to squeeze in some personal PD.

There are lots of podcasts that inform and entertain out there, and you may have some favorites already (share them on the Padlet below), however you may want to give a new one a try over the summer. You can find a number of interesting podcasts at Education Podcast Network. Two of favorites are:
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The Cult of Pedagogy hosted by Jennifer Gonzalez. Podcasts cover a number of topics in education, including instruction, classroom management, and technology.

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 10.50.46 AM.pngGoogle Teacher Tribe, hosted by Matt Miller (Ditch That Textbook) and Kasey Bell (Shake Up Learning). This podcast will keep you up-to-date with the latest announcements from Google, and give you ideas on how to implement the newest features into your curriculum.

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 11.08.48 AM.pngSome of USD’s favorite outside presenters also host podcasts.

Check This Out is hosted by Brian Briggs and Ryan O’Donnell. They chat about the latest in education news, often including the newest Google tools, and talk about creative ways to integrate new ideas into your classroom.

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Bedley Brothers hosted by Tim and Scott Bedley interview leaders in education to talk about “what works” in education.

If none of these pique your interest, here is a Podcast Directory with lots of suggestions in and out of education.  

Listening to a podcast episode is easy from your smart device or computer. If you decide you like one and want to subscribe, there are a few options, partially dependent on which device you would like to subscribe to the podcasts on. This guide will walk you through the steps.


Other way to keep up with what is new and a way to get great ready-to-use ideas is through blogs. When you find a blogger you really connect with, it is fun to read their musings, thoughts, and ideas. Todd Sinclair, fifth grade teacher at Oster, shared some of his favorites.

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 10.14.22 AM.pngMatt Miller (also of the Google Teacher Tribe podcast) is a Spanish teacher who writes a, Ditch That Textbook, blogpost twice a week with proven classroom suggestions and tips on how to provide engaging classroom activities that support student learning.

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 10.16.22 AM.png“Coming to you from the Canadian Maritimes ( Halifax), Educational Technology and Mobile Learning is an educational blog dedicated to curating, reviewing and sharing EdTech tools and mobile apps. The purpose is to help teachers and educators effectively integrate digital technologies into their day-to-day teaching, learning and professional development.”

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 10.18.08 AM.pngRichard Byrne’s Free Technology 4 Teachers offers tools, with an easy to follow, how-to slideshow or video. Daily posts can be delivered to your Facebook account.

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 10.18.51 AM.pngTeacher Tech with Alice Keeler. Like Richard, Alice posts pretty much daily. Her posts always include easy to follow step-by-step directions and ideas on how to implement the tool(s).

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 10.20.10 AM.pngEdSurge covers trends and news in edtech. Not only a tools blog, you can read about what startups are doing, as well as legislation and studies that affect grades K-12

Blogs can be delivered to you by email. Check each website to subscribe.

Looking for something else, check out The 2017 Honor Roll: EdTech’s (50) Must-Read K-12 Blogs.


Familiar and comfortable with Twitter and ready to grow your PLN(Personal Learning Network)? Summer might also be a time to check into Twitter Chats. With the large list of chats, you are sure to find one in your interest area and/or that fits into your schedule, anytime, day or night.

Many people who participate in a Twitter Chat will use a tool like TweetDeck to follow the hashtag and be able to respond quickly. Learn more about how to manage it here.

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 10.21.53 AM.pngTwo favorites you might want to explore are #CAedchat which meets on Sunday evenings at 8:00 and #TosaChat which meets Monday evenings at 8:00. Joining one or both of these chats is the easiest way to make connections outside the district. You’ll find it fun to connect with folks you “meet” at local and state educational events.

If your favorite podcast, blog, or Twitter Chat was missed, please share it here in this Padlet.

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