A Snappy Follow-up: Snapchat in (and out of) the Classroom


Snapchat isn’t what I thought.

I mean, it is. It’s a powerful Augmented Reality tool that teens are using  ALL.THE.TIME.  And PROLIFICALLY.

But once I got into it, my ideas (see the previous post) of how to use it in my classroom shifted.

I thought I’d use it for kids who missed class, snapping English lessons to my Story, etc.

I did do that.

But that’s not where or how it was most effective for me.

Instead, I went on maternity leave and started to “snap” my life.

Snapchat removes the small talk barrier.


Student followed me while I was away for 8 months. I transitioned into a fuller-time guidance counselling role when I came back, and students started to pay more attention to my life.

They wanted to know, as a role model, what I do in my spare time, on the weekend, at night.

They’re used to knowing what their peers do, and it’s in some ways a great cultural divide not to see teachers and other responsible adults in that light.

Students started coming up to me voluntarily. Instead of the awkward  and somewhat invasive “what did you do on the weekend” question, they could tell me how cute my dog was, and go on to talk about their own pet – or ask me what I thought of the movie they know I’d seen on Netflix (because of course, I snapped that!)

As an English teacher, I can chat all day about the Power of Stories. Humour? Drama? Satire? You betcha, I’ve got literature for that, and then some.

But guess what?! Snapchat allows me to produce these genres, anew, each day – from my very own life.

Not only that, but students are engaging and laughing along (or at … whatever). I don’t know about you, but I tend to characterize myself as a stand-up-comedian in my classroom. So engaging them with silliness or humour or the narrative of my adult, interesting (?), responsible life is natural for me.

My "Bitmoji" is in a good mood.


This style won’t fit everyone. Likely, it is healthier not to “snap” your life than to spend the effort thinking about it, and I certainly put more effort into other things.

However, I hope you consider taking a look.

Our lives should be somewhat private, but as the adults that our students spend the most time with, they want to see how we actually live.

I encourage you to think about what that means for you! For me, it’s my dog, my evenings marking, my child, going to the farm, and silly selfies with different filters (exciting, right?!)

If you want a quick Snapchat tutorial, you can find one here .  

There’s a great rundown of the platform here.

And if you’re an educator wary of Social Media – you can find some good tips here.

It’s good to be back and writing- next time I’ll keep up the social media streak, and post about my adventures on Youtube.

If you’re already on Snapchat, or thinking about it, please leave a comment to tell me what you think!

Aw, Snap! Snapchat in the Classroom

Add me to see my posts this term!

Add me to see my posts this term!

What Is Snapchat?

Snapchat is that app that became infamous for sending naked selfies that would disappear. Remember that? Well, its image has changed.

Now, Snapchat offers its users a number of different options to follow friends, celebrities, and media outlets like CNN and the Food Network – and teens use it every day. While Snapchat hasn’t quite beat Facebook Messenger in popularity, it’s tied with Instagram and far surpasses twitter in teen engagement.

Snapchat’s Discover feature allows users to keep up with current events, and it’s Stories feature  – a compendium of short videos and photos that lasts 24 hours – allows users to vicariously experience the edited lives of their peers.

It’s fresh, it’s common, and its main aim is to tell a personal story. That’s why I plant to use it in my English Language and Literature class this year.

How I plan to Use Snapchat

All kinds of educators are using Snapchat in all kinds of ways lately.  They use it to update students, to send out announcements, to teach about social media, and much more. I’m really just jumping on the cool-train here.  But having studied the medium, I think it is especially relevant for English and Media Studies teachers to learn about this particular platform.

I plan to use Snapchat to post summaries of my course material for the day, and ask students to respond. But as a Media teacher, there is so much more to Snapchat than just posting short personal videos.   I become a curator, an editor, (potentially) a comedian, and a student of media trends. I get hilarious and lovely snaps from friends of mine daily – and instantly! I get short snippets and tips from the Discover feature. And I am building the skill to distill the essence of my lessons (for class purposes) into relevant, pithy, personality-rich packages for my own benefit as much as for the benefit of my students.

More importantly, I get to tell a story economically, and with doodles.

Safety-wise, students can add teacher Snapchat accounts without teachers seeing what students have posted. Accessibility-wise, any student with a phone or ipad can join and participate.

As for invading a space occupied predominantly by students, I don’t think they’ll mind. When I  mentioned my idea to the class last week, one student asked “why isn’t every teacher doing this?”. Students want teachers to understand where they’re coming from. They seek relevance.  So this is my first experiment of the term – to share in and learn from the relevance they seek.

With the Canadian PM election coming up, and then the American Presidential election – it will be fun to see which social-media platforms keeps us millennials most informed, and which ones the parties use to create the most impact. Some predict that in 2016, the top seed will go to Snapchat.

Here’s to experiments, media literacy, and a new school year of possibilities!


If you want to become more proficient at Snapchat, you can follow these people, and read these tricks. If you are a Snapchat beginner like I was, I hope you find the links embedded in this post to be helpful. 




Not all Those who Wander are Lost: The Action Plan Journey

Just because they AREN'T doing something, doesn't mean they CAN'T do it.

Just because they AREN’T doing something, doesn’t mean they CAN’T do it.

You can take a look at my action plan reflection and summary here:


All that is Gold : The Plan 

My Action Plan: Engaging students in deep reading of literature using digitally native technology.

Did it work? YES!

But how?

After my students and I co-designed designed study tools, coming up with: Crash Course-style Youtube video to treat T.S. Eliot Poems; Instagram scripts and videos to treat Hamlet (and make it 5 minutes long); and Student Led Critical question seminars through Google Hangouts on Air, they had familiar tools to work with and a real live audience to perform for. They also had to use deep literary analysis to produce these tools, which were (as they stated a need for) relevant to studying for their IB English exams in May.

After I switched my teaching and we started to perform first time read-throughs IN CLASS , they became more confident in engaging with the literature. They’re even preparing Google Hangouts on Air, after school hours, to create permanent video study-aids for their peers!

It went very well.


All Those Who Wander: Student Reflections


Yes, the students caught on that I was tricking them into engaging with the literature. One student wrote : “There should have been more time to develop the social-media study tools. But overall it was a good way to disguise our studying in a creative manner”  – Hm. More time, eh?

Another student wrote: “Seminars after school are good because you are able to watch the answers to the essay questions at any time. Also, when presenting the answer to a question, you learn a lot more about a text.” – So, they want permanent tools to access to study for the exams, but they also appreciate the learning they had to do.

A third student wrote: “We were able to incorporate themes and motifs from the poem and the overarching information that people needed to know to read the poem and understand it.”, referring to T.S. Eliot, which they had previously deemed inaccessible.

But this fourth student really got me thinking:

“We managed to run a very funny condensed version of Hamlet via Twitter (90% complete). We worked hard to try to keep our group on task, but they seemingly did not care about both the project and the group.”  Their version of Hamlet, arranged by ACT for ease of consultation, can be accessed here. It is hilarious. It served as the back bone for much of the Hamlet Instagram Script.  As you can see, though, the whole group did not participate. This was the catalyst for my own reflection on the project.


Do Not Wither: My Reflections

Collaboration: While the students produced excellent results, the reflections which addressed group dynamics and participation caught my attention. Next time, I would scaffold authentic collaboration into the tasks. In fact, I plan to learn more about authentic collaboration through the summer in order to do just that next time.

20% Time: They wanted more time to perfect and complete their research and products. Next time, I plan to build in 20% time and have them create the tools throughout the year, so they’re not cramming last minute. Since I now have the answer to my action plan research question, I know this will help them engage deeply with the literature early on in the course.

Out-of-Classroom Experience: I was unprepared for the level of positive feedback I received for the Google Hangouts On Air tutorials. Students have requested more of these since we officially finished the project. Here is one I led going over the structure of their paper 2 exam. It took a lot of effort to go through the protocols to get their faces on the internet (one “I can be on youtube” waiver, and another “external image release” waiver) , but once that was settled, it was easy-peasy. I will certainly be preparing these tutorials from the beginning of the year as well next year.



Cohort 21 is a build your own PD – we have a general focus (21st century learning) and a task (create an action plan, and execute it if possible), but other than that, we are free to design professional development, research, and projects that suit our own unique classroom needs.

Not only that, but the constant collaboration, from twitter chats, to Hangouts, to Project Tuning Protocols, to fellow “Cohorters” attending your PD sessions, there is a network of encouragement and support throughout.

Finally, seeing what others are doing is invigorating! It has really encouraged me to continue in my plan and to use the work of others to help me reflect on my own.


The Four C’s : fostering 21st century skills in the lit class.

wild rumpus

from “Where The Wild Things Are”, by Maurice Sendak, c. 1963


Wild times in Ms. Bailey’s Class, folks!  But I’m eating them up.

Four things are happening in class right now:

1. My class has designed and is creating study tools for themselves and their peers.

2. My class is engaging thoroughly with literature they need to study.

3. They are using native (and somewhat native) technologies to do it!

4. Without even trying (almost), we’ve integrated the 4 C’s of 21st century learning – communication, creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking! win, win, win, win.

Here’s how we’ve been doing it … .

1. Communication (or: A Wrinkle in Time)

“Experiment is the mother of knowledge”- Madeleine L’Engle

In case this is the first of my posts you’re reading, here’s a snapshot of what’s been happening. I’ve been looking to facilitate deep engagement with challenging literature in my students, through “digitally native” technologies- or tech that they’re already using. For my students, that means Skype, Youtube, and some Instagram and Vine – (because I haven’t figured out how to incoporate Snapchat in to lessons , although these people have).

But to go even further, I asked them to design  study tools and tools to understand literature so they can succeed on their exam. I issued a survey to them the week before, which revealed that passing their exam was their number 1 priority (not surprising). They came up with great ideas, including a pill you can take to just know everything, and a website where I’d post tutorial videos, and a trivia game.

That’s where we were after my last blog post. Next, we decided on real projects.

2. Creativity, (or: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do You See?)

I see an intimidating task looking at me.

From the design lab we came up with some workable projects – which the student seemed to be pumped about. The first was a “Crash Course”style video to learn Poetry. The second was a series of Instagram videos to summarize Hamlet (this will make Hamlet exactly 5 minutes long – take THAT, Branagh). The third was to translate greek tragedy to current times through Twitter. This one is the rockiest, as none of the students had twitter accounts beforehand.

We also explored some other ideas that came out of the lab. We debated “whether Hamlet should be taught in school”, and started some thematic T.S. Eliot discussions. That’s when I noticed this piece of one student’s design lab:


During the debate, the point that Hamlet is “too hard” or “confusing” came up more than once.  The students are vocal about their frustration with The Wasteland – and I found this in an early draft of their Crash Course T.S. Eliot script:

Screen Shot 2015-04-06 at 7.19.18 PM

Tall order!

They’re still working on the script, but I think they’ve found some exciting solutions to the difficulty problem – and their own assertion that Eliot is 1. Hard, and 2. Boring.

I also found this excerpt in a first draft Hamlet Instagram script (yes, (gasp!) a script for instagram vids)

Screen Shot 2015-04-06 at 7.26.50 PM

They’re speaking in language they believe will be appealing/entertaining to their peers, and they’re getting some of the complexity of the text.  Exciting stuff – it’s amazing what they come up with for an authentic audience!

But we hit a wall of sorts. While each group is becoming experts in their text, they all have to know both texts for the exam in May. So I underwent Cohort 21 -style tuning protocols to get some great feedback on our class project.

3. Collaboration, (or: How to Train Your Dragon)

Twelve days north of hopeless, and a few degrees south of freezing to death…

I love to collaborate. The project tuning protocol led by Celeste were no exception. After sharing the above with the team, I received some crucial feedback.

First, I shouldn’t be doing more work than the students. (THIS WAS A HUGE REVELATION). So, instead of doing “my” part – they asked me to create a website with video tutorials on it – I assigned them “critical question seminars” to record over Google Hangouts on Air  (don’t worry, they signed a waiver). That way, the students are the ones leading the tutorials (though I’ll be leading one myself). And those who can’t make the hangout – unlike in a Skype call – can watch it later via the link provided. Another study tool down the hatch!

We’ve also been reading more together in class- that way the students can ask their questions about the lit as they come up. This is an obvious answer to my question about engaging them in the literature, but one I’d shied away from in the past.

Not did I get to collaborate with a number of insightful colleagues, but these insights allowed me to collaborate with my students to create knowledge-building, critical-thinking tutorials they can use as additional tools to study!


4. Critical Thinking (or : Where the Wild Things Are)

Let the wild rumpus start!

It’s time to reflect, revise, and remodel for the next phase of my project.

I learned something  from the second project tuning protocol where Beth Nichols shared her exciting idea to Blog as reflection in Math class. In our Google hangout we discussed the importance of reflecting in general. I decided I need to do that more in my grade 12 English class.

How has this project affected their approach to learning literature? How has it changed their classroom experience? To what extent have they benefitted from this kind of learning? To what extent are they satisfied with their designs?

In one sense, this whole process has been a prototyping and testing phase of the design cycle. This week in class, we’ll be creating our final media and reflecting (thanks Beth!) on our experiences, setbacks, and growth through the process. I’m so curious to hear what they’d do differently next time, and how they’d revise their designs. They are excellent critical thinkers already. I’m really looking forward to the criteria they’ll come up with to assess their work, and how they plan to take this experience with them into post-secondary.

Personally, my framework and criteria was the Technology Integration Matrix. I think I’m right at the Infusion level – which is far greater than we were at before.

My personal next step is to get my classroom to the Transformation level of the TIM. But as a teacher, as we all know, I’m much more enthused about the students’ experience. I’ll be sharing that in my wrap up post on the 24th!

Any thoughts until then are very much welcome!


There Is No Spoon : Seamless Tech Integration in the Lit Class?

matrix neo kung fu

Down The Rabbit Hole 

When in doubt, use students as guinea pigs (as rabbits?). So, in doubt, I invited my students to join me on my journey towards seamless tech integration in the Lit class.

The Matrix

Down The Rabbit Hole…and into the MATRIX!

BACKGROUND: I had my students fill out a survey for me which addressed their use of technology, their work habits, and their anxiety level for upcoming assignments. They are most worried about two upcoming assessments where they need to write essays using literature we’ve studied this year. They also agreed that they love to use SKYPE and Youtube for every-day use, and that they’d enjoy something as easy/ fun/ mindless to use  for class purposes. In our discussion we agreed that perhaps a video series overview of the literature would help them succeed in these two tasks. But, we went on with the design lab to see what else they could do.

Today in class, my students and I went through the DESIGN LAB process presented to us by Cohort 21. Their challenge: to design a tool that would promote maximum literature engagement, and that they’d likely use for themselves.

This is where they blew my mind!

They collaborated to create excellent designs in the design lab. These designs were tested using the “extreme user” model.  “Imagine your designs will be used by the student who currently takes notes every class and reads the literature many times, and also the student who has never opened the book.”

Let me tell you about three of those designs.

Get Appy

The first design was for a review app. It looked like this:


Does it look familiar? That may be because it looks exactly like this:



This is Trivia Crack, a trivia-quiz game where you can compete against friends in timed challenges. Do you have any students in your classroom using cell phones? They’re likely playing Trivia Crack. Actually, the initial wave of popularity  in the last two weeks has started to die down here. Nonetheless, more people seem to be addicted to to Trivia Crack ) than not. So what did my students do here? They designed an app to closely resemble an app they were already comfortable with and enjoyed engaging with.

I have been searching for a quiz game that they can use to compete with one another for fun. Other than Kahoot , I have found QuizUp  –thanks to THIS discussion thread.  So I have a starting point, at least.


Digitize My World

The second design looked like this:



That’s a sketch of someone’s MacBook.  What they’ve designed here is a responsive website for essay practice. Instead of on paper, these students have  designed a website that provides randomized IB essay questions, especially Exam Paper 2 questions, with sample level 7 (top level) completed paper 2’s to use as exemplars.

I give students this kind of task with tree-based materials before exams in my class. They want to practice.  And they want to see excellence to emulate excellence. Plus, they want instant feedback if possible. Again, this is familiar to them : they already have a tool like this. They simply want unlimited access to sample questions and excellent exemplars. But they want them digitized, fast, and all at once.

They’re asking all the right questions. They want to know:

What does an IB question look like?

What does a good answer look like to that question?

How do I write an excellent essay?


My next steps here are easier than app development: I can create a website with  a database of essay materials for them.

I Know Kung-Fu

This was the third prototype:


Yeah, that’s for real.

It’s a pill: a pill that would allow us to remember things without having to do any work.

At first I thought : oh no! But after some brief reflection, I realized… YES! That’s what I want for this project, or at least, what I want it to feel like. I want their engagement, review, and retention to feel like the least amount of work with the greatest pay-off.

They want their tools for learning to be so integrated that they don’t even know they’re learning. Well, actually they want to not have to learn. They want this:

Matrix Plug


Eventually, according to Ray  Kurzweil, we’ll have that matrix-y-head plug. But in the mean time,  what we really need is a way for students to feel like they’re gaining mastery-level-knowledge effortlessly, while activating their critical thinking skills (which, even when we can access neck-ro-chip knowledge, we will need to facilitate).

Notice, none of the students were interested in designing as a part of learning. They wanted formulas, review, and instant understanding.

There Is No Spoon

Seamless : the tools between the user and the learning should not really exist. You know how we don’t notice we’ve been on youtube/twitter/facebook/in-front-of-the-tv for 4 hours? That’s what I’m talking about. That’s the kind of “tools” the students are looking for.

So that’s my first challenge in my Action plan : invisible/unobtrusive tools.

I also want to integrate content creation for learning — which my students aren’t even thinking about. You know the old theory that students learn best by teaching? Well, apparently it works, cuz science. So I’m not going todevelop the materials – they will.  Having them develop learning materials for others will certainly help them retain content.

So the second part of my action plan is to use the Active and Collaborative parts of the Technology Integration matrix (TIM) (there’s that thematic tie-in) to both facilitate seamless tech integration AND improve students’ active participation and collaborative synthesis in the classroom.

Here’s my task, according to my pal TIM:

“The Teacher encourages the innovative use of technology tools. Technology tools are used to facilitate higher-order learning activities that may not have been possible without the use of technology ”  [ higher order: analyze, evaluate, create]

Design Labs

Will we develop an App? Maybe.

Will we use immersive technologies or game-style review? If we have the budget…?

But I will definitely endeavour to make this integration as painless and seamless as possible.  I plan to help students explore tools to produce both review and deep engagement materials.

And I will certainly keep in mind my “extreme” audiences: those who will already do the reading at home and take notes (and enjoy doing it!), and those who wanted a pill.

I invite you to join me as we continue down the rabbit hole to Wonderland.

The Digital Natives and Their Ways

Image from Techandlaw.net

Image from Techandlaw.net

The Vision.

( Cue: dramatic movie-trailer voice)

In a world where students live online and learning lives in the classroom, one teacher will dare to “connect”. Will she succeed in incorporating online life, content learning, and sound pedagogy? Or will she and her students fail miserably and descend into an abyss of disconnectivity and despair?

Ok. Is that too much drama for you?

The Dream, The Nightmare, The Wakeup Call. 

Picture this: a quiet night at home. Ms. Bailey diligently adds students to her Google+ network so they can participate in a Google Hangout English tutorial the night before the December exam. She can’t do On-Air, to protect the students’ privacy.  Instead she figures about 10 keeners will come to tutorial, which is perfect for a regular ol’ Google hangout. 7:59 pm … anticipation mounts as the hangout is about to begin.

Does it go as planned?

Of course not.

No, 21 students show up for the tutorial. Too many for a Google Hangout (in many ways, a wild success!).

Additionally, despite her microphone working on the computer, and being turned “on” in the hangout, no student is able to hear her (in many ways, my bad).

Finally, the keen students suggest a technology which is native to them : Skype. YES! Skype! While 21 people would make video-conferencing slow on this app, the chat function and audio functions of Skype would work well, especially if Ms. Bailey can paste links into Skype chat (which she does).

SO, they move the whole party over to Skype. Since they all know how to use it already, and all have each other on Skype – save, of course, courageous Ms. Bailey- , this new venue takes about 3 minutes to get going. The evening is saved, and  they all have a productive 45 minute tutorial.

The Action! 

This brings me to a recurring theme in my investigations : can we reach students more effectively by teaching them using technologies that are native to their quotidian experience, than by introducing newfangled technology they have no non-scholarly applications for?

My Action Plan involves teaching students literature using “technology.”  I want them to collaborate to create knowledge and experience of the texts we are studying in ways that are most relevant for them. For their high-stakes exam in May, they’ll need to recall details from texts all the way from the beginning of the year. Are there accessible ways for them to establish this content as they learn it, and access it instantly throughout our course?

I hope so.  I’ve already started my investigation through google docs — which students also don’t seem to be using outside the classroom. It hasn’t been too effective thus far. Instead, I’ll continue by investigating Vine, Ask FM, and other social-ish media they already use daily to see if it’s more effective in their “out of classroom” hours.

The Matrix !!!

Yeah, prepare for a bajillion matrix jokes, quotes, and photos next post. That’s really why I chose the Technology Integration Matrix – makes for good writing.

TIM has, in my humble opinion, the coolest aid for implementation, in the form of a — wait for it — integration matrix … .

But wait, there’s more!

This matrix has not only descriptions of each level of integration, for different essential classroom skills (e.g. collaboration), but has examples of each for each subject one might teach (helpful for those of us who like concrete models for achievement). Also, there’s this rubric with general descriptors!

My favourite part is that I can measure my progress based on how natural it is for students to engage using my own tools, while effortlessly tracking my movement through the matrix. Exciting.

To Be Continued…

Digital Natives have their own “native” uses for technology and social media. To use an analogy, are we trying to colonize and convert our students to “appropriate” uses of technology? I’m hoping to conduct a brief ethnographic study, and then use students’ technologies in their ways to enhance classroom learning for our collective purposes – starting this month! We start Hamlet this week, so stay tuned to see whether my visions for Shakespearean Vines and Tumblr posts will work, with the guidance of the Matrix.


(A note on Google Hangouts: I really LOVE Google Hangouts, and all the possibilities for the classroom – the school I’m at has an elective Gmail account for students, and optional Google apps participation, which is part of the issue with making students Google apps “native”. I’m looking for something that can be seamless and natural for me and the students – hence, going towards what they’re already doing. In my case that just happens to not be Google Hangouts right now. )

The Changing Face of Education?

What's Next for Classroom Learning?

What’s Next for Classroom Learning?

Stop, drop, and roll! Cohort 21 is on FIRE. When we start to “rethink 21st century learning” a big question we ask is, “what’s next?” Many answers come up, but in all these answers, and with so many new tech-savvy techniques, the most intriguing theme is about the role of the teacher. We are shifting from simply subject experts to experts in lesson design and media delivery.

Teachers as Packagers

2 of Time’s Most Influential Teens this year are Viners *. Yes, next to Nobel Peace Prize nominee Malala and Pop Sensation Lorde are two people who create SIX SECOND video clips. Not to mention Jaden Smith, the unofficial philosopher king of Twitter. Students are influenced in a matter of seconds, with as few words as possible. They want short, SHORT splices of information. They want Bite-sized bits. And they want it NOW. This post is already too long for them.  As teachers, we need to learn to package content in the most conservative, accessible ways to reach our students by the means in which they are influenced. Not only that, but we need to scaffold academic skills they’ll need for the future. Technology is the most relevant means to fulfill and ever-growing need for quick, packaged access to learning. But who will package that content? Who will produce those skill-building snippets? Teachers. (That’s us)

Students as Captains

The word on the street is that students are under-equipped technologically for today’s careers, never mind tomorrow’s.  Students need to learn how to use and leverage technology, collaborate, and market themselves for the future.  Without their educators teaching them to navigate and explore the high seas of technological development (which is tied to social and entrepreneurial development), they will be behind. Technology has become multi-disciplinary–another important aspect of the “real world” students need to interpret. Students need coaches to teach them how to fathom the depths of information and media that is out there. Sea analogies aside, they also need to be exposed to the many ways of learning through technology, in order to promote life-long learning in the 21st century, rather than blind consumption.

Students as Citizens, Teachers as Coaches. 

While some students are blindly consuming Vines and Tumblrs, others are already creating, communicating, and curating using the tech at their finger-tips. How can we tap into that for pedagogical gains? For subject learning? To equip them with professional and academic skills? To what extent can we teach them the responsibility that comes with technology? Hopefully Cohort 21 has some answers. Today in our first Face 2 Face session I learned that the most innovative educators are already using the latest social media and web resources to their advantage, and to the advantage of their students. Teachers, therefore, are modelling the most effective ways to use social media and other tech developments.

Our students are going to be citizens in a technological jungle — but in a world where they have access to an instant global forum to share their ideas, collaborate, and market their skills. The thing is, they already have access, and can be guided through what it means to be an instant global citizen right now, with the tools they are already using AND with the latest and greatest technology.

Teachers need to package info into chunks and modules so our students know how to consume it (5 pages of hard copy reading with no activity? Gone are the days!). How can we co-create with them to refine the skills they have, and coach them in skills they lack? As an English teacher (for example), I have noticed students lack reading stamina, which is troublesome! How do we ensure students have the skills they need (thanks Garth in the comments!) and the style they most readily engage with together in one class?  Teachers are finding the answers– and they’re sharing and talking about it on the internet!  How can we join them on the frontier of this ground-breaking pedagogical shift?  With mixed metaphors and crazy hyperlinks, I’ll keep you posted.


* Thanks to Rebecca S. at TMS for pointing me towards the Time article, and for her great points and great conversations about vines and the teenage mind.

Welcome to Cohort 21

Welcome to Cohort 21. This is the first post on your new blog. This journal is an integral part of your Cohort 21 experience. Here you will reflect, share and collaborate as you move through the C21 learning cycle towards your action plan.

Cohort 21 is a unique professional development opportunity open to CIS Ontario teachers and school leaders who are seeking to explore  what it means to a teacher in the 21st century.