Welcome to my Blog page.  I will cross-post some of the items normally found on my regular educational blog located at or my class blog located at

My Blog

This year I am hoping to get more of my students to participate on a global scale when it comes to collaboration.  They were encouraged to participate in the Edublogs Student Blogging Challenge for enrichment points this fall.  I have a number of students who were interested in signing up for the challenge.  Since this specific blogging challenge does not really fall within my social studies curriculum I am making participation voluntary for the students.  They can do as many or as few assignments as they have time for and are comfortable with.

I am using Edmodo as my online classroom platform, with a group set up specifically for Enrichment Assignments.  Each challenge will be rolled out as an optional assignment with in the group.  Each week will also have an optional assignment to go out and comment on another students' blog from the list of participants. The hope is that once students get into the habit of commenting and communicating with others we can expand naturally into collaboration.  A list of student participants can be found  here.

I will list and link my students' blogs to a separate page as they begin their journey into global collaboration.  I am hoping that the activities give them confidence and interest to become active and responsible digital citizens.

Sep 10, 2013 9:12 AM

My Blog

This was originally posted on my Edublog site.  Not being 1:1 in my classroom since October has really slowed down my plans for student projects this school year.  It may just be my own personal bias or train of thought that slowed things down, but things slowed down nonetheless. I felt it was too complex and cumbersome to require students to access and work regularly on projects without dedicated daily access to 1:1 technology.  The students still have completed group projects, but many of the mundane things I wanted them to do have fallen to the wayside.

At long last, my Freshmen are finally personalizing their individual blogs.  I made it an assignment for them to personalize their blogs' theme, add widgets, pages, and other such things.  There are restrictions to the personalization process, everything must be appropriate for school and relevant in some way.  I want them to begin using the blogs outside of the classroom...I will still award points for bog posts, but I want them to start CREATING THEIR OWN IDEAS....and then publishing those ideas on the Internet.  My Freshmen are in my civics class and what is more civic than contributing positively to the social discourse.

I will still have final approval before posts go public, it is one safeguard I am not comfortable relinquishing at this time.  I do not know if many, or any students will blog on their own outside of class, but I hope they do.

Mar 2, 2011 12:06 PM

My Blog

This was originally posted on at

Okay, I realized last year that I was too spread out on the Internet to be effective for my students. This year, my goal was to focus my efforts and make my web presence more effective. In an awkward way, I am doing so by using more Web 2.0 Tools...kinda ironic isn't it.

The way my online presence was set up became ungainly and cumbersome. I outgrew the wiki I was using as my main site a couple of years ago and began looking for alternatives. I used BlackBoard which became too expensive, went to Moodle, which did not work out, then on to Edmodo, which rocks. I went with a "Two Way Street" model, I push out information via Edmodo, students would use the class wiki for their informational platform.  My students still use the wiki for posting their projects, but the everyday information has fallen off. We have a class blog where the students post their writing assignments for the world to see, warts and all, or as @bpasquale likes to say, "the unvarnished work of students." My parents were directed to the various sites by either our school's Edline page, or the class wiki. This set up just did not work, the reasons are plentiful.

Well, here is my game plan. I needed a one-stop shop to direct people around my many sites that was not cumbersome and did not require a log in.  I finally jumped on creating a website. This is now my main site, located at, surprise, surprise.  From here you can, or will soon be able to, access everything that is necessary for success in my classes.  I will still use Edmodo as my online classroom, the blog for longer student writing pieces, and the wiki as a student publishing platform.  However, my website ties everything together and strengthens the connection between the existing sites.

My website will contain all of the information parents, students, and even my administrators need to keep current with my classes.  I will even use the site to showcase samples of student work, and hopefully spur interest in the main sites where student work is published.  I will explain not only the tools my students are using, but the reasons behind their uses.  This should clear up some of the confusion that occasionally arises throughout the year.  The site will also host ways to sign up for tools and services I use such as Textmarks, my new self-made Droid app, Netvibes, Google Docs, Evernote, and others.

I am hoping this tool streamlines the other sites and reinvigorates their usage by all parties involved in the educational process.  The potential is there for the sites to be powerful learning tools, but as I often like to say in my classes "potential and $4.95 gets you a small frappachino latte at the chain coffee store."  These sites need to be more than potential tools, they need to be effective in the real world.

Feb 24, 2011 9:12 PM

My Blog

Well, in an effort to focus my web presence and be more effective, I created this web site.  As stated on the main Blog page, I post most often on

I hope to use this space to highlight special topics that I write about and push out information that will be helpful in transforming education.

Feb 23, 2011 1:22 PM

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