Showing posts from September, 2017

Dream Big

Back in 2014, while I was on my Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship at the Pennsylvania State University, my apartment in Cunningham Hall was the place where the Humphrey Fellows met every week. There we talked about serious and less serious matters, we laughed a lot and cried a little, and we dreamed big and small. One of our dreams was to write a research paper and have it published by a renowned publishing company.

And yesterday my dream arrived per mail! A paper that I co-wrote with my colleague and best friend Bart Verswijvel, was published by Routledge. Bart and I were invited to contribute to the book International Handbook of Teacher Quality and Policy by Dr. Gerard LeTendre and Dr. Motoko Akiba.

In 2014, I met Dr. LeTendre at the Humphrey Fellows Welcome Reception. We talked about education and I mentioned eTwinning. He was amazed to hear about this unique community of European teachers and wanted to learn more so he invited Bart and me to talk about it to the Teacher Leadership F…

Climate Action Project

I'm delighted to take part in a global project empowering students to address climate change. Climate Action involves more than 250 schools from 64 countries. Students in these schools will work together to raise awareness and to find ways how to tackle the issue of climate change.

So far I have launched or participated in a number of international projects on such a large scale, (e.g. my award-winning project Greetings from the world involved 27 schools from all the 6 continents), and in all my projects I encouraged my students to come up with  their own ideas. Still, I was there, their guide by the side, directing them in the way I thought was the right way!

However, in the Climate Action Project, we teachers intend to get out of their way completely - we want  our students to have their say in all the stages of the project. My plan is to make myself invisible and let my students be responsible for their learning and take ownership of the project and its outcomes. During the 4-…

My 10(-ish) Year Blogging Anniversary

I just noticed that I've been blogging for 10 years and 6 months! I forgot to mark the 10th anniversary, but it's never too late to do so. Some stats:
I've written 334 blog posts, received 371 comments,  my blog has been visited 134,121 times, I have 58 followers, most of my readers come from the US.
I've written about traveling quite a lot, both  as a tourist and as a teacher traveling for educational purposes (conferences, school exchange visits, etc.) and also about teaching with technology. I don't know how many miles I've traveled, maybe there's an app for that!

My most visited post is First lesson, new students and no computers, followed by Tech Tools To Boost Verbal Thinking. My least visited post, with only one view is Easter Sunday in Galway (I still think it's a well-written post about a beautiful Irish city).

When I started this blog I used Picassa for sharing photos, but as Google discontinued this service my photos in my blog posts can'…

Stop Chasing Dreams

When you work hard, you work and work and all it results in is failure after failure, and you look back and try to improve and make it better and work again and work and work and nothing but failure comes out of all this hard work, how do you get up and keep going? How do you gain the strength to overcome your failures? Where do you find determination not to give up? How much grit does it take to succeed? How do you know that there is success at the end of the tunnel filled with failures? What if success happens to other people, what if it will never come to you, no matter how hard you work? How do you know when the time is right to turn over a new leaf? How do you know when to stop following your dreams? How do you know that your dreams are too big to fulfill?

Top 5 Tech Trends To Dominate This School Year

According to ISTE, the following top tech trends  will dominate 2017-18 school year:

1. Coding 
2. Real-Time Learning Feedback 
3. Virtual and Augmented Reality
4. Media Literacy
5. Digital Citizenship

Check out the full article by ISTE Connects here: 5 Tech Trends To Watch This School Year.

Turning a blog post into a video with Lumen5

Lumen5 is an amazing user-friendly app that turns a blog post or an article into a video! All you have to do is copy paste the link to the blog post and Lumen5's Artificial Intelligence will automatically create a storyboard for the video. If you don't like how "Natural Processing Algorithms" have shaped up your story, you can easily edit it any way you want.
The next step that AI performs is choosing the appropriate audiovisuals from a huge library of copyright free videos, photos and audio clips.  If you're not happy with AI's choices, no problem, because you can upload your own visuals. Before you publish the video you can add your logo and your watermark if you want to. The video can be published directly on Facebook or it can be downloaded as an mp4. file. Here's my first video that I created very quickly, it took me about half an hour to turn one of my blog posts into a video in the way I liked it.

Lumen5 offers a free plan with an unlimited number …

Trends, Challenges and Developments in Educational Technology

It's been a huge honor and privilege for me to serve on the Expert Panel of the NMC/CoSN Horizon Report for two years in a row and to examine applications and manifestations of trends, challenges and technology developments. This year, the Panel was composed of 61 education and technology experts representing 20 countries across 6 continents. The Report can be downloaded here. The NMC/CoSN Horizon Report: 2017 K-12 Edition was produced by the New Media Consortium in collaboration with the Consortium for School Networking and made possible by mindSpark Learning.

The expert panel examined an extensive set of background materials that identified and documented a range of existing technologies and proposed new topics and technologies that are relevant for teaching, learning and creative inquiry in K-12 education. The final topics selected by the panel are detailed in the Report.

Freeman, A., Adams Becker, S., Cummins, M., Davis, A., and Hall Giesinger, C. (2017). NMC/CoSN Ho…