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Innovation

Two weeks to go...what are you doing with your students?

If your students are anything like mine, they're going completely out of their minds right now (and probably taking you right with them).  In our case, our seniors have already graduated and everyone else is just counting down.
Written by Christopher Dawson, Contributor on

If your students are anything like mine, they're going completely out of their minds right now (and probably taking you right with them).  In our case, our seniors have already graduated and everyone else is just counting down.  So how do we occupy them with something other than YouTube (which I recently blocked since that was all that was occupying our students, as well as our bandwidth)?

For my tech students (a web design class this semester), the answer is fairly easy.  We have a major move and renovation scheduled for all of our computer facilities this summer, so I can put the most restless to work breaking down labs, storing supplies, and even beginning documentation on the new networking that will be installed.  The more focused are creating retrospective websites for some retiring teachers.

It's a little bit tougher for my geometry students.  We're racing to at least talk about trigonometry so they aren't completely lost when they come back in the fall.  Keeping their attention in a hot classroom and trying to get them jazzed about SOHCAHTOA is like pulling teeth.  I'm breaking out the technology and having them do some modeling and graphing in Geometer's Sketchpad and Maple, which helps a bit.  Stick the kids in front of a computer and they're occupied for at least 30 minutes before the call of the Internet becomes too strong.

So what recommendations do we have as technologists for our English teachers?  Social Studies?  World Language?  Science?  What resources can we direct them to that will engage these kids in the home stretch?  As we all know, kids will gladly spend hours in front of a computer screen even if they won't listen to 5 minutes of a lecture.  So how do we use technology to avoid just writing off these last couple weeks?  Video presentations?  Podcasts? Websites?  Talk back below and share your advice...I have a line of teachers who'd love some suggestions.

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