After eight years of teaching in a technology driven high school and after attending workshops, seminars and conferences worldwide, I thought it was bout time I challenged both my astudents and myself.
I wanted to see if it was possible to find a project that could engage every student in my 11th grade class of English learners and see if we all could work together as a team. Most of all, I wanted to see if they could produce an end product that would be authentic and involve collaboration with educators and students globally.
My thoughts on engagement
Every educator wants to experience the moment of “flow” when all the goals are set and understood and work is moving along easily and naturally. When we read about engaging students in the classroom using technology and social media, authors often leave us with the impression that this work will flow gentle as a stream. When talking about motivation and learning in school, grit is most often left out of the conversation. Yet, according to Daniel Pink, the best predictor of success is grit, defined as perseverance and passion for long term goals.
Our published book proves that when you find the right project — one that really involves all the students — they can find the grit and do what it takes to reach the final objective.
And here’s an interesting fact: The most popular topic to write about in this book turned out to be motivation. It is ironic that motivation and innovation are topics we discuss on almost every level in education, from policy makers and educational experts to school leaders and teachers. We are simply missing the most important link here — we do not spend enough time discussing this with our students. My students’ reflections in this book show us that we should spend a lot more time discussing important topics like motivation, learning, pedagogy and technology with them. In this book, we provide many great examples and discussion topics to get us started.
I am very happy to say that we have managed to write a book that we think will be helpful for teachers all over the world. It explains how to set up your classroom to get you started. It shows how teachers and students can set up blogs, make a Twitter account, use Skype in education and connect with others. I think more teachers should try to open up their classrooms to all the possibility we have with the use of technology!
Our publication of the 200-plus page collaborative book Connected Learners: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Global Classroom.As our press release says, this interactive eBook is
a unique compendium of stories, advice and how-to articles designed to help high school teachers and their students around the globe shift from classrooms that are isolated and teacher-centered to digitally rich environments where learning is student-driven and constantly connected to the global internet.
There are many books on the topic “learning in the 21st century,” and I think I have read most of them. The authors are educators and educational experts I know and admire. Many write about what students want and how students learn. What occurred to me was that there are no books about this topic written by students.
Let’s listen to the students! Want to buy the book? Click on the picture of the book. We are saving up for a field trip and would love to visit one of the schools we have been collaborating with! Text previously posted at Powerful Learning Practice . See full text here: