Blog Archives

Lunch & Tweet with the Commissioner

MESPA Chat Pic

Join us for a “Lunch & Tweet” with Minnesota’s Commissioner of Education, Dr. Brenda Cassellius, on April 20th at 12:30pm CST.

Feel free to invite a colleague or fellow educator to participate.  The questions we’ll be discussing are listed below.  This is a great opportunity to dialogue with other educators who are committed to the success of Minnesota students.

Q1. What is working for Minnesota students? Share something great happening in your school. #MESPAmn

Q2. How are you helping all students and families connect and “belong” in your school? #MESPAmn

Q3. What is one thing you are learning, or hope to learn, to improve your leadership? #MESPAmn

Q4. What are some strategies your school is using to promote equity and close the achievement gap? #MESPAmn

Q5. Where do you see the greatest need in PreK education? #MESPAmn

Q6. Let’s talk pedagogy and innovation.  How are you preparing students for their future? #MESPAmn

Voxer + Augmented Reality = #Mind-Blown

I belong to a collaborative group of educators that connect on a daily basis using a mobile app called Voxer. The app allows us to converse about important educational issues, and to network as professionals. One of the powerful features of Voxer is that it allows users to share their voices (and not just 140 characters of text). We recently created T-Shirts for our group…but the fun did not stop there.

We published a collaborative video using TouchCast and linked the video to graphics on the T-Shirt using two augmented reality apps. The image below is a trigger that can be activated using the Daqri app. After you download Daqri, point your viewfinder at the state map and an interactive experience will launch! Download Daqri and see what the MN Educators are up to…we dare you!

Use the Daqri App on this trigger to view Augmented Reality experience.

Use the Daqri App on this trigger to view Augmented Reality experience.

We also used the Aurasma app to create an additional augmented reality experience. Download Aurasma and “follow” the Greenwood Elementary channel. This will allow you to interact with the T-Shirt’s main logo below. Be sure you are following our channel in order to view a video featuring more than ten teachers and principals across the Midwest.

Use the Aurasma app and be sure to "follow" the Greenwood Elementary channel to view.

Use the Aurasma app and be sure to “follow” the Greenwood Elementary channel to view.

By combining Voxer and augmented reality we were able to feature several of our group’s team-members in the video powered by TouchCast. Now that is some MAJOR app smashing!! If you happen to meet a member of the MN Educator’s Voxer group at a local conference be sure to say hi…and don’t forget to test out the augmented reality on the shirt’s logo.

**Special thanks to Brad Waid (aka @TechBradWaid on Twitter) for support creating the Daqri experience.

**Huge shout-out to Aaron Schmidt (aka @Schmiaah on Twitter) for designing the T-Shirt logo. 

Technology meets Tubing!

Warming up in the Chalet

Warming up in the Chalet

Our 3rd graders recently took a field trip over their specialist (PE, technology, art, etc.) and lunch time to Elm Creek Park Reserve.  Their mission was to have fun, be active, and to enjoy each other’s company while practicing good character.  We even sent a “Go-Pro” (mobile stunt video camera) with on the trip, so be sure to check out the action footage below!

We understand that many parents are not able to volunteer in school during the day, so we thought this was the perfect opportunity to provide you a glimpse of the trip using the mobile Go-Pro technology.  You can see that our students had a blast tubing, working together, and just being kids.  They were so active that many fell asleep on the bus ride back to school!  I was able to greet students at the doors when they returned to Greenwood, and the unanimous feedback was that the trip was AWESOME!

I later learned that one of our students told her teacher, “This was the best trip ever…I bet you haven’t had this much fun since you were our age!”  Ahhh…to be young again!!  Another student shared with his teacher, “I was scared to go down the hill and I thought I could never do it, but I tried and loved it…I’m not scared anymore!”  It’s neat to hear stories of students pushing themselves to learn and grow in and out of the classroom!

At another point on the trip we had 20+ students going down the hill together…everyone had a blast.  A big part of the student learning experience is to understand how to interact and relate with each other in a positive and responsible manner.  The relationships our teachers are building with students serve as the underpinnings to their overall academic success.

I’m so glad our staff and students can work hard AND play hard together!


**The YouTube videos above are “unlisted” in YouTube, so you will not be able to search for them.  

Parents that would like a copy can e-mail me for the link or use paths above.

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