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Teaching 4 Tomorrow Blog

Changing the Narrative of Education

May 05, 2017

Changing the Narrative of Education

Classrooms aren't always represented accurately in the media. It is not uncommon for news outlets to highlight the latest teacher scandals but ignore the quality work the majority of teachers are doing. Popular television shows often show students seated neatly in rows, reading textbooks, and looking bored. Images of blackboards and chalk still abound when referencing education, yet the classrooms I see everyday are filled with the very opposite of these depictions.

Tech Integration into Schools

Apr 28, 2017

What Is Next After a 1:1 Initiative?

Nearly five years ago, Gurnee District 56 embarked on a journey to equip students in the district with iPads to be used as their primary curriculum delivery tool. As we began that journey, there were no road maps to follow, and many times it felt as if we were walking in a dense forest with no idea what lurked five feet ahead of us. In a truly collaborative effort, we began to clear the forest and discover enough light to chart a clear path forward. We have come so far since then.

Apr 21, 2017

How Predicting the Future Can Develop Digital Citizenship Skills

In my last blog, we explored activities to help students “frame the system” rather than game the system in order to think critically about the rules that should govern their digital lifestyles. Now I'd like to discuss an activity that helps students develop digital citizenship skills by imagining new technologies. The goal is for students to take charge of their futures by inventing it. Digital citizenship is often approached from a reactive perspective in response to unwanted behavior like cyberbullying or cyberstalking. In contrast, this activity approaches digital citizenship proactively, casting students in the roles of leaders and “imagineers.”

Top 5 Resources Last Month

Apr 14, 2017

Our Top Five Resources for March

Each month we publish several newsletters full of digital learning, funding, professional growth, social media, and STEM resources. Below are the resources from our newsletters that educators turned to the most in the month of March.

Parent-Teacher Communication Apps

Apr 07, 2017

Finding the Perfect Parent-Teacher Communication App for Your Classroom

A recent study by Gallup found that only one in five parents are fully engaged with their child's school. In my 19 years of teaching, I've tried every form of communication to bridge the gap between home and the classroom—emails, texting, blogging, a YouTube channel, Facebook. 

Are You a Connected Educator?

Mar 31, 2017

Are You a Connected Educator?

Like many teachers, I am passionate about changing the world through connecting with our youngest citizens. My motivation stems from wanting the best for my students so they can succeed in their educational pursuits and find their place in the world. My passion drives me to help them develop lifelong learning as part of the fabric of their lives.

Ask a Libarian

Mar 24, 2017

Ask A Librarian: Personalize Student Research with the Reference Interview

Whole class instruction concerns me. As I scan my students’ faces for signs of comprehension or confusion, I worry if I am speaking too slowly or quickly. Have I made the research process transparent enough?

Mar 17, 2017

Activities to Give Students a Voice in the Digital Citizenship Conversation

We are up against a serious neurological challenge in terms of students making ethical decisions. For most of us, the brain's neo-cortex—where the seat of ethical judgment resides—is not fully formed until we reach our early twenties.

Top 5 Resources Last Month

Mar 10, 2017

Our Top Five Resources in February

Each month we publish several newsletters full of digital learning, funding, professional growth, social media, and STEM resources. Below are the resources from our newsletters that educators turned to the most in the month of February.

Points of View in Media

Mar 03, 2017

Neutral, Biased, or Balanced?: Recognizing Points of View in Media

Before the recent inauguration, then Vice-President Elect Pence accused the news media of being biased. As the media and Washington seem to be careening out of control, our students and their families are becoming more confused about navigating news.

Help Students Research

Feb 24, 2017

There’s Nothing on My Topic: Tips for Facilitating Student Research

Students can easily become discouraged and abandon research if their initial inquiry doesn't yield results. Generally, this issue can be traced to misreading the search results, taking the assignment guidelines literally, or fully formulating the final product before the student has even begun research.

Digital Citizenship in Schools

Feb 17, 2017

“Partycipate” Like It’s 2022: The Case for Digital Citizenship in Education

As technology advances and our real lives (RL) increasingly blend with our online lives, the need for digital citizenship in education has never been more important.

January 2017 Top 5 Resources

Feb 10, 2017

Our Top Five Resources Last Month

Each month we publish several newsletters full of digital learning, funding, professional growth, social media, and STEM resources. Below are the resources from our newsletters that educators turned to the most in the month of January.

Teaching Students to Closely Examine Information

Feb 03, 2017

Teasing Out the Truth: Teaching Students to Closely Examine Information

“Where is the best place to find the most accurate information for your research topic?” I asked my eighth graders who were on the cusp of their third Big Six research project.

Research Tips

Jan 27, 2017

Fear, Loathing, and Research

The majority of my students are uneasy with research and for a long time I couldn’t figure out why. After all, in many ways the Internet has made research easier than ever. 

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