First of August Musings

I just wrapped up an AP summer institute at SMU Plano. We spent our days talking about strategies and practicing different kinds of assignments to use with our students. We read a story and participated in a modified Socratic seminar to discuss the piece. When we finished, someone asked what to do when a student refuses to participate. I shared my experience with using Twitter in the classroom and allowing students to tweet questions or responses to questions while other students were in a fishbowl. One teacher asked, “How do you know they’re not texting?” That’s when I realized how lucky I am to be in a district that encourages the use of technology. I can’t help but be surprised by how many districts still don’t do some form of BYOT.

I really haven’t had much of a summer. Between xCamp, state assessment retesting, and other random workshops and trainings, I’ve been on the go and my brain really hasn’t had a chance to rest. Because I haven’t really shut off, I was probably the first person to reply to the principal’s request for session leaders for in-service in a few weeks. I decided to offer an “Appy Hour” session to share apps that I plan to use with my students. I created a Google spreadsheet that I’ll share with others and ask them to add to the list as we go through the year (I’ll link it here when it’s a little more complete). Every app on the list is free, except one. I finally paid for Notability, and it is totally worth $1.99.

More to come next week.