Goodnight iPad …

by Matt Gehrett on September 17, 2014

Apple and other technology companies continue to make gadgets that spark our imagination and take our money.  In fact, I have a strong desire to purchase an iPhone 6 right now but my rational side (and wife) are helping me to keep my wallet in my pocket.   Am I addicted?  Do I need more balance in my life?

As I reflect on these questions, I think back over my recent academic journey.  I just recently finished my dissertation regarding the use of mobile technology for classroom instruction. (If you would like to read it, click here.)  I spent two years observing and working with two Christian schools as they rolled out the use of iPads for classroom instruction.  The iPad has been beneficial in improving classroom instruction and student engagement.   Both of these schools now have mobile technology in the hands of their students and the devices are used daily in every classroom.  The administration, faculty, and students are actively moving forward with the use of mobile technology to improve learning.

I am currently teaching a graduate class for Central Unified School District teachers who are pursuing a master’s degree in educational technology.  Central Unified has started to implement a 1-to-1 tablet program this year for all of their students.  (To find out more about the program, click here.)  The district is committed to providing access to the technology for all students and improving teaching and learning through the use of the technology. The teachers are working diligently to transform their teaching and student learning.   I look forward to watching the teacher and student progress as FPU continues to helps educate their educational technology leaders.

Yet … there is still a small voice inside of me that urges some caution as educators use these devices with their students.   Don’t get me wrong … I am a fan and a geek but I am concerned about balance as we embrace digital technologies.   We have all seen the family in a restaurant who sit in silence as they all gaze into their devices.  I would encourage each of us to continue to be aware of this danger and continue to talk with our children (and ourselves) on how to establish a healthy balance in our lives.   Each day, we may need to say “Goodnight iPad!”

By the way, if you would like to read my previous thoughts on mobile technology in the classroom, here you go …

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Common Sense and the Common Core: Adding Integers

by Matt Gehrett on December 10, 2013

Adding Integers

Grade 7, Math

CCSS:  Math.7.NS.A.1c

Adding integers is tricky and students need support!  The concept of numbers having additive inverses on a side of the number line that for years didn’t exist in their schema, can be very hard for students to grasp when they first see this concept in late elementary school.  Enjoy a brief video of how a student is perplexed on learning a new math concept.  Secondly, this segment shares a dynamic video on how one teacher creates a lesson on “integers” but introduces unconventional learning experiences to help students remember and use these new skills in their lessons.

If you have a resource or lesson on integers, please share.

Resources:

Presentation by Mr. Kajitani Class Slides

Khan Academy:  Adding Integers with Different Signs

Illuminations:  Resources for Teaching Math

1.  Using an Elevator to Evaluate Signed Number Expressions:  Elevator Arithmetic

2. Using an Elevator to Evaluate Signed Number Expressions:  Flipping for Integers

Twitter for Teachers:  Math Teachers for collaboration

AIMS Education Foundation:  Hands-On Math & Science

“Dealing with Integers”  Students will play card games to practice adding and subtracting integers and recognize that verse effects with numbers of opposite values.  Download  $2.00

“Integer Interstate”  Students will use the motion of a car on a number line to model addition and subtraction of integers, recognize the inverse nature of addition and subtraction with integers, and recognize that absolute value is a measure of distance, not direction. Download $3.00

“Integer Avenue”  Using a street as a number line, students understand that integers communicate both distance and direction. They also recognize that absolute value is a measure of distance only.      Download $3.00

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Common Sense and the Common Core: Supporting Computations in Division

November 6, 2013

Welcome back to our video series.   This episode focuses on another lesson with Assistant Math Professor in our School of Education, Darrel Blanks. This lesson examines how the standards support the computations that students do in the area of division.  Mr. Blanks will demonstrate two concepts of division developed in 3rd grade which will […]

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Common Sense and the Common Core: Technology and Textbooks

November 6, 2013

In this episode, we explore technology and the classroom.  Specifically, we will be learning about the use of ebooks and how they can be used in a more cost efficient and productive way for schools.  We will hear from Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and the founder of CK12 on the subject of eTextbooks. Our […]

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Stories in Math Class?

October 22, 2013

   This blog entry was written by Wil Reimer, Professional Development Instructor for FPU Anyone who has ever sat through a lecture knows that it’s often easy to let one’s concentration drift. Soon we’re replaying last night’s football game or dreaming about tomorrow’s concert. Some of us have a hard time keeping our eyes open; […]

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Funambulist: Six Apps to Help You Survive

October 11, 2013

This blog entry was written by Janet Adams MA, Special Projects Coordinator for Continuing Education at FPU. Pronunciation: /fjuːˈnambjʊlɪst/ Origin:  Late 18th century: from French funambule or Latin funambulus (from funis ‘rope’ + ambulare ‘to walk’) + -ist Despite the wall-to-wall training on the Common Core these last few months, teachers are sharing their own […]

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Common Sense and the Common Core – Building Coherence Across the Grades in Math Lessons

October 6, 2013

Building Coherence Across the Grades in Math Lessons One of the strengths of the Common Core State Standards is that they are constructed in a way that can help students make sense of math.  In many places in the standards, specific representations of concepts are called out. The understanding of how these representations are related […]

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Common Sense and the Common Core – Discipline That Restores

September 26, 2013

Today, schools are looking deeply into social and emotional learning as they integrate these skills with the Common Core State Standards. Numerous research reports show that social and emotional learning (SEL) can have a positive impact on students’ academic performance.   Teaching the soft skills, traditionally associated with conflict resolution and character education, have evolved from […]

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Common Sense and the Common Core – Creating Text Dependent Questions

September 22, 2013

Take a moment to learn from teacher educators at Fresno Pacific University.  These short videos are built to encourage teachers to use their common sense as they implement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) into their curriculum. A few more resources for teaching with text dependent questions … Writing Higher Order Questions from the Teaching […]

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Common Sense and the Common Core – Flipping the Classroom with “Show Me”

September 16, 2013

Take a moment to learn from teacher educators at Fresno Pacific University.  These short videos are built to encourage teachers to use their common sense as they implement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) into their curriculum.   Was this video helpful?   Can you use this teaching strategy in your classroom?  Please share your comments […]

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