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Tell Us YOUR Story: Blog to Support Special Needs

Did you know that according to a recent study, close to 3 million school-aged children across the United States have a disability? That’s 5.2 percent of the entire population of U.S. students.

The percentage of students enrolled in special education programs has grown at nearly twice the rate of students enrolled in general education.

These numbers reflect the rise in occurrences of disabilities in students, but what they fail to do is speak to these students’ stories. These reports fail to acknowledge that behind the labels, IEPs, politics, and policies, these students have lives, and these lives are impacting others. They are more than their disabilities; more than points on a spectr…

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Twitter: Empowering Student Voices [Guest Post]

The timeless skill of effective communication is the anchor, which will enable students to successfully find and share their voice with the world through the power of words. As we celebrate Digital Learning Month in February, we must embrace the power of digital media and the impact it has upon our daily lives. Are you utilizing the incredible power of social-media in your classroom?

In a world of instant communication, our students have the opportunity to engage and share with a global audience on a daily basis. Teaching students how to be effective collaborators, interact globally, and build powerful networks, is both the social and academic benefit to Twitter in education. As society and technology changes, so does literacy. Can social media positively impact 21st century literacy-learning? Utili…

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#Edchat Weekly Roundup: Using Technology to Demonstrate Growth in the Classroom

This week's #edchat focused on how we can better-implement educational technology to document growth in both students and teachers. The 12pm ET topic discussed how we can use digital portfolios and/or other e-learning tools to document student growth and achievement in a more valuable way. The evening's conversation at 7pm ET questioned whether ideas discussed within PLNs (professional learning networks) and online communities of educators were really making waves in the educational space, or if we're just a "like-minded minority."?

With the rise of technology and a push towards more "authentic" forms of learning/assessment, is it time for education to shift away from stagnant letter grades? See below for participants thoughts on the 12pm ET conversation:


If grades are an indicati…

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#Edchat Weekly Roundup: Importance of Student Voice

One of the most commonly used education hashtags (asides from #edchat) is #stuvoice. An abbreviation of “student voice,” the popularity of this hashtag is demonstrative of just how important the voice of students is in today’s educational climate. In a time where schools seemed to be more focused on testing than teaching, it’s now more important than ever to let #stuvoice be heard.

This past week’s #edchat discussed two aspects of student voices. At 12pm ET, the topic discussed was the Flipped Classroom Approach, a teaching model that inverts the traditional teaching methods by bringing “homework” into the classroom, and delivering online instruction at home.

For more information about the Flipped Classroom model, take a look at Knewton’s infographic “

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#Edchat Weekly Roundup: 21st Century Teaching Tools

This week's #edchat topics focused on two different areas of teacher best practice. To begin the day, #edchat contributors discussed the relevancy and authenticity of worksheets, questioning whether or not they had a place in the 21st century classroom. Late Tuesday evening, the conversation focused on innovative 'ed tech,' and how teachers can implement it as a tool rather than a distraction. While these topics clearly focused on different areas of pedagogy and practice, they fall under a common theme (and common debate) of tradition vs. innovation.

The days' topics were as follows:

  • 12pm ET: If innovation is the goal of education, and is promoted through higher order thinking skills, why do we focus on worksheets?

  • 7pm ET: How do we change a t…

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#Edchat Weekly Roundup: Taking Care of Our Teachers

Welcome back to our blog's new segment #edchat Weekly Roundup, where we look back at Tuesday's #edchat topics and highlight some of the day's poignant conversations and key players.

Yesterday's #edchat topics - moderated by @ShellTerrell and @blairteach - were as follows:


  • 12pm EST: How do teachers as education experts regain the leadership of the discussion on education reform?

  • 7pm EST: What would be the effect of building collaboration and reflection time into your word schedule?



Teachers as Leaders, Leaders as Teachers

In a time when the state of education is at the forefront of national discussion, we as te…

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Integrating Technology into the Common Core Classroom [Guest Post]

The following is a guest post by Karen Larson and Gene Tognetti

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Integrating the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) creates a number of opportunities for educators. Once teachers develop classroom implementation plans that address the “why and what” student outcomes to be learned, teachers need to address the “how.” How do I, a third grade teacher, create opportunities in my classroom that will ultimately lead to “college and career” readiness? How do I teach students so the outcomes are truly learned?

This can be an exciting proposition, and indeed a great time to be an educator. It is a golden opportunity to improve teaching practices while we incorporate the CCSS. It’s also an opportunity to reassess and address how other education…

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