Two Sides of the Same Coin

This image of a spinning coin reveals not only that it’s possible to view both sides of a coin simultaneously, but that it’s lovely. Reading and writing are two sides of the same cognitive coin. Carol Booth Olson’s book,  The Reading/Writing Connection, has helped me teach reading and writing skills hand in hand for years. Similarly, as I pursue my Innovative Educator Certificate with CUE, I realize that Exploring and Sharing are both sides of a different coin called Learning. So, as I explore, expect me to share with my cohort colleagues in social media and in this blog as well as the one I’m creating for my e-portfolio, not just to document my learning but to expand it with the comments of others. I’m already finding that, as I spin and blend the sides, it’s lovely.

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New to Moodle

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Tonight I had my first experience with Moodle, a 10 year-old technology for online learning. It was great! I’d been scarred early on by a frustrating, glitchy user experience and been wary ever since. But CUE and Fresno Pacific University do it right. We “met” via Blackboard Collaborate and used Today’s Meet as a back channel. All the course materials are on Moodle with links to all things Google Apps. I’m excited about being in the Innovative Educator Certificate program with some awesome teachers and fantastic instructors. Continuing Ed units toward salary credit won’t hurt either.

Why isn’t PBL everywhere now? Or Grandma’s Lasagna

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Photo source: sultana.com

My students have had tremendous success with 20% Time Projects aka Genius Hour, a variant of Project-Based Learning. Research has documented the benefits of learning this way and increases in standardized test scores. So why isn’t PBL everywhere now?

This article lays out a sensible description of the barriers and suggests changes. It’s a bit self-serving, but the author’s not wrong. His metaphor of Grandma’s lasagna is perfect. How can you expect people to want to make lasagna from scratch if they’ve never tasted it, much less possess the time or desire to work that hard when no one around them is doing it? PBL is delicious! Share it with your friends. Make your own.