Blog Archives

5 Ways to Connect a Class to the World

 

For the interactive version of this video in TouchCast click HERE.

Teaching the YouTube Generation without providing kids the opportunity to create content would be absurd.  However, connecting kids to meaningful learning experiences that include other learners around the world is not always associated with traditional practice (unless you count pen pals).  This TouchCast Ambassador video provides a short (3 minute) synopsis of how a class could tap into video as a transformational learning tool.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I’ve been using TouchCast for approximately three years.  This year I am partnering with them as a Star Ambassador and paid consultant.  TouchCast is a free app and I am not selling anything, but I want this partnership to be clear to readers. 

Heads-up: The Adjusting Course blog has a new home.  Check it out at www.BradGustafson.com and subscribe so you don’t miss a beat!

World Book Talk Championship

There is no doubt about it.  We LOVE to read and we want to cultivate that same love of reading in our students.  One way we can do this is by talking about the books we love and involving our kids in the process.

Jen LaGarde and I are teaming up to bring you the World Book Talk Championship. This is the Super Bowl of book talks.  (We even included a few fun reading-themed commercials to complete the Super Bowl feel.)  We started with 16 incredible educators who each submitted a short book talk video.  We’re down to four finalists and we need your help.  Who will win the coveted “Vince LomBooki” award for best book talk in the world?

#30SecondTake Brackets 2016

It’s “I Love to Read Month” and we’re feeling the love!  Click HERE to view the championship round of the podcast.  In the eight minute video you’ll see two “Literacy Legends” take on two “Lead Learners,” but only one person can hoist the championship trophy.  YOU decide!

Click HERE to cast your vote online…voting is open through February.  We’re also seeing classrooms create their own versions of the #30SecondTake book talks too.  We’d love for you to share these with us as well.  Most importantly…keep reading!

 

Special thanks to Oliver Schinkten…his creative genius elevated our Super Bowl commercials to an entirely new level.

An interactive TouchCast is available at: http://www.touchcast.com/greenwood/30secondtake_podcast_world_book_talk_championship 

Global Green-Screen Project

Greenscreen with Brad

CONNECT STUDENTS TO A COLLABORATIVE VIDEO PROJECT #GlobalGSP

Click HERE to View Current Playlist!

Do you remember being a student in elementary school and creating a shared story with your classmates?  The idea was simple…a teacher started by writing down a sentence on a sheet of notebook paper.

The teacher would then pass the paper to a student seated near the front of the class, and that student would add a sentence.  After that, the story would be passed to the next student who would also add a sentence.  The key was to build off each other’s writing to create a cohesive plot.  It was wildly creative and tons of fun!

The Global Green-Screen Project is essentially the same thing.  Instead of adding a sentence to a story your class is adding a 20-30 second video created in green-screen.  This is an opportunity for students to practice creativity, collaboration, digital leadership and more!

OPTION #1: DIRECTIONS

  1. Sign-up to participate HERE.
  2. Wait for your turn (each video “chapter” needs to build upon previous videos).
  3. Watch all of the videos before your chapter to ensure your class connects to the preexisting plot in a logical manner.
  4. If you notice the person ahead of you missed their deadline on the sign-up sheet you may contact them or skip them to keep the project on schedule.
  5. Try to conclude your video with a transition or prompt that sets the next class up for success.  This will increase cohesion in the final production.
  6. Once your video is complete download it to YouTube and title it using the format below: “Chapter (insert number) – Global Green-Screen Project” 
  7. Add a YouTube link to your completed video in the shared google doc HERE.
  8. E-mail the next person on the list when your video is posted so that they may begin production.
  9. Try to complete your video within 2-4 days of being contacted.

We’ll run this first Global Green-Screen Project for six to eight weeks and see what happens.  Please use the hashtag #GlobalGSP on Twitter for sharing.

OPTION #2: FREESTYLIN’

Students can create a short (1 minute or less) green-screen video that goes with the theme, “Let Learning Take You Places.”  The goal is to amplify student voice in a creative way, so encourage kids to dream big as they share their learning.  Once your video is complete download it to YouTube and title it using the format below:

“Your Name – Global Green-Screen Freestyle”

Note: The “Freestyle” option will be run separately from the collaborative video project.  Freestyle videos are not part of the shared story sequence being created across different schools.

COMMON CORE STATE STANDARDS

The Global Green-Screen Project provides students an immersive opportunity to interact with the Common Core State Standards.  Please see an example of the Speaking/Listening Standards this project supports below.  

Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.5.4
Report on a topic or text or present an opinion, sequencing ideas logically and using appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details to support main ideas or themes; speak clearly at an understandable pace.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.5.5
Include multimedia components (e.g., graphics, sound) and visual displays in presentations when appropriate to enhance the development of main ideas or themes.

QUESTIONS?! CONTACT OUR KEY COLLABORATORS:

@JenHegna

@NMHS_lms

@MrEricHills

@DerekBell20

@KoryTellers

@GustafsonBrad

#GlobalGSP

NAESP Bean Bag Highlight Video

Bean Bag

This past week I attended the NAESP National Convention in Long Beach.  The conference focused on best practice and the learning was epic!

Prior to the conference, Ben Gilpin and I collaborated on an event to further connect conference attendees.  Our goal was to cultivate relationships that would propel into the actual conference sessions and beyond.  We extended an open invitation to all principals and school leaders attending the conference, and partnered with NAESP to blast the invitations out using e-mail, social media, and other web tools.

We had a great turn-out and met many colleagues who we were able to connect with throughout the conference…this was a HUGE victory (unlike the staged photo above).  Checkout the highlight video below to see more of the action and meet the 2015 National Bean Bag Champions!

Click HERE for an interactive version of the video via TouchCast.  (The end of the video includes a link for the new Studio-in-a-Box.)

Special thanks to Ben Gilpin, Penn GSU, Joe Mazza, NAESP15, Kaylen Tucker, and TouchCast for supporting the Tweet-up.

NAESP National Panel on Innovation

Click Flyer to View Video

Click Flyer to View Video

We’ve got an NAESP National Panel planned with some spectacular surprises.  Join us for a conversation about innovation and connectivity in education.  To get to know the presenters before the conference, simply click on the image above or download the DAQRI augmented reality app on a mobile device. (Just hover over the flyer while in the DAQRI app to launch into a 4D experience!)

Date: Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Time: 2:00pm – 3:15pm

Location: Long Beach Convention Center, Room 201B

Presenters Include:

Amy Fadeji

Ben Gilpin

Brad Gustafson

Joe Mazza

Todd Nesloney

Theresa Stager

Can’t travel to NAESP in Long Beach? Watch for a Periscope link via Twitter to join us virtually!

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. 

Connected Summer Learning via Social Media

What do you get when you combine summer learning with Augmented Reality and the positive power of Social Media?! The answer is pure awesomeness…and students EVERYWHERE are welcome to join the fun.

We’re providing kids a unique way to stay connected this summer.  The poster below contains a very special Augmented Reality (AR) message.  Follow the steps on the bottom of the poster to see the drawing come alive, and to view a summer learning video from Greenwood Elementary School’s principal, Mr. Gustafson.  If you are in a pinch for time and don’t want to print the poster to experience the AR message, just click the image and a YouTube video will play. (It’s not quite the same experience…but you’ll get the important info.)Summer Learning PDF

Connected Learning PDF

After students view the surprise augmented reality (AR) video they can begin creating their projects.  Projects can use any art supplies that parents approve of, but should highlight positive character traits like caring and citizenship.  Posters might include pictures of service-learning projects, cool graphics, or important quotes. So…bust out your markers, glue, and glitter and start creating!  After your child’s Character Poster is completed you can share it using our school’s hashtag.  Students love the chance to share their work with an authentic audience!

Take a photo of your child’s poster and Tweet it to me @GustafsonBrad then add #GWgreats to the message. This project is a fun way for kids to connect to a common project and make a difference over the summer.  We’re so proud of all our students do…and we can’t wait to see the creative work that is shared.

The Positive Power of Social Media

 

Episode #4 Coming Soon!

Click the Image to view Student Podcast – Episode #4

 

Our students have been collaborating on cross-state podcast projects this school year.  Kids from Minnesota, New Jersey, and New York have created video podcasts in the TouchCastApp to become more connected learners.  We’re learning how Social Media can be utilized to inspire, connect, and share the amazing things happening in our schools.

Our next podcast will feature an exciting new interactive element…we’re inviting students EVERYWHERE to join us in a celebration of creativity based on a “Squiggle.” A Squiggle may appear like a simple wavy line…but using your imagination a Squiggle can turn into anything!

Squiggle Pic

Squiggle PDF for Connected Classrooms Project

Here’s how your classroom can participate:

Watch our podcast about what a Squiggle is and see some examples from our creative kids. The podcast will air in May, 2014.

  1. Print the Squiggle PDF from the link above and encourage your students to flip, turn, color, and create using the Squiggle. The more creative their designs the better!
  2. Take a picture of each Squiggle masterpiece and Tweet it out using the hashtag #StuConnect
  3. Check back often to see what other creative kids and classrooms are doing…we’ll be selecting one random classroom to receive a classroom pack of new Crayola art supplies. Anyone that submits a Squiggle art drawing to our hashtag this school year is eligible for the art prize pack.
  4. Spread the word…we want our students to see the positive power of “connectivity” while simultaneously celebrating the creative genius in EVERY child!

Help us provide students an authentic audience for their work!  Be sure to use the hashtag #StuConnect when submitting your students’ Squiggle artwork.

What a Summer!!

This has been one of the most professionally rewarding summers I’ve had in a long time.  I’m taking some doctoral classes and have been immersed in some rich dialog and learning with some really neat friends and colleagues at Bethel University.  Our journey together as researchers has spanned three summers now, and the cohort I’m in has been a blessing.

I’ve also begun to expand my Professional Learning Network (PLN).  The teachers, administrators and authors I’m learning from have made me a more connected principal.  It’s been an amazing adventure and some of the educational technologies that I’m most excited about right now would not even be on my radar if it weren’t for my PLN.

Best of all, I’m able to take some of the innovative tools that I come across and share them with staff members at our school who are also exploring areas of passion.  Together we are really integrating some neat ideas and opportunities for students in our school!

Without further ado, here are my (current) favorite educational technology tools:

1.)  Twitter.  Connect, learn, grow, share, rinse & repeat.  Need I say more?  Hands down the biggest difference maker for me as a reflective and connected principal.

Aurasma

2.)  Aurasma.  Although I’m just scratching the surface of Augmented Reality (AR) apps, this one is a keeper!  It has ignited my imagination and the power of AR to bolster student creation, imagination, excitement, communication and creativity is limitless.  I originally entertained thoughts that this app may just be a glorified QR code generator, but it’s so much more.  To see a VERY basic example of what Aurasma can do check out my AR Resources page on this blog (second tab).

TouchCast3.)  TouchCast.  Got communication?  This app has all the bells and whistles you’d ever want to start creating your own podcasts.  Best of all….it’s easy to learn and has a very professional aesthetic.  I’ll admit my first TouchCast was an epic fail, but sometimes that’s where the best learning occurs.  If you’ve ever pondered replacing a traditional classroom/school newsletter with an interactive podcast that’s intuitive and fresh TouchCast is a MUST SEE.  Love. This. App.

Smule AutoRap4.)  Smule (Auto Rap).  Ever wish you were a rap star?  This speech converter is my wife’s nemesis!  A principal named Curt Rees shared this one with me, and I spent the better part of a day creating school related rap songs with my three young kids.  Can you imagine the creative potential in an elementary classroom?  Instead of a summative assessment at the end of a unit, how about a solid rubric and Smule’s Auto Rap App?!!  PS – Here’s a sample off my kids’ first solo album: http://khush.smule.com/autorap_52195b7a1902c&v2

5.)  WordPress.  I really enjoy writing, reflecting and sharing.  WordPress has been a fun new tool to connect with others and document some of my own learning as a school leader.  (Thanks for reading this blog by the way.)

The Principal of Change

Stories of learning and leading

In Kids' Shoes

Inspiring the Next Generation of Innovators

Reading By Example

Rethinking the Role of the School Leader

Engage Their Minds

Great Minds Don't Think Alike!

Adjusting Course

Responding to the Needs of the 21st Century Student

On The Leaders Edge

A Reflection of Life, Learning and Leadership

Digital Eyes

Looking at Education Through the Lens of 21st Century Skills

Shelley Burgess

Reflections of an educational learner and leader

The Principal's Principles

A Middle School Principal, striving to make the world a better place, one day at a time.

Thrasymakos

True, he said; how could they see anything but the shadows if they were never allowed to move their heads?

Engaged and Relevant

Just another WordPress.com site

pernilleripp.wordpress.com/

Blogging Through the Fourth Dimension

Jessica Johnson @PrincipalJ

Lead Learner, Elementary School Principal, otherwise known as PrincipalJ

The Thesis Whisperer

Just like the horse whisperer - but with more pages