This week in the 210 at Lakewood Elementary!

Hey everyone!

Trying hard to do this more often now, things are finally starting to settle down a tad, so now I get a little more time to dabble in my passion projects!

So, my buddy Brian Aspinall, just posted; ‘It’s Friday, what was the most memorable moment this week’? Well…buddy we had a few!! So, here we go!

This week was the Global Microsoft Skypeathon; which was another incredible experience, where we travelled across the Globe to India, Kenya, Africa, California, Florida, Malaysia and chatted with some very incredible, inspiring people right here in Ontario, Canada as well; such as Derek Tangredi (Micro:bit Workshop), Lia DeCicco Remu (A view within the Grade 6 Classroom, Amy and Stu McLearn (Entrepeneuralship and Write to Give), Melissa Young (Cardio Blast / DPA) and Mr. Brian Aspinall (Makey Makey / Scratch Workshop)…so many other fantastic people to like Ms. Cavers, Jason Heritage (and his daughter Laura, it was take your child to work day), Sam and Philip down in Africa too!

It was a great two busy, exhausting but incredible days!

But, that was not the moment that stood out for me this week. One of the connections we had was with Stu and Amy McLearn and one of the students had mentioned she would love to create a YouTube Channel sharing her thoughts and opinions on music. Stu suggested a Podcast like his Marketing Your Business Podcast. So, here is the moment that made my week….this gal; E was curious, asked lots of great questions that day after school and also asked if I knew of any great Apps to use to create a Podcast. I have a few in mind so I mentioned those but I said go home do some homework and find something that is great.

The next day E and I explored ‘Anchor’ we walked through the templates and created a ‘Mock Podcast’, and she was hooked! She said; ‘Be ready Monday Mr. Archer, I will have one ready for you!’ That was the moement, that gal was inspired by Stu and I in turn was inspired by her! Therefore I reflected on my past thought and concept of attempting one myself and decided, dang if she is going to try why not do it myself?!!?

So, I created ‘Archer’s TNT Classroom’ Podcast which is now avaliable on Anchor, Breaker, Google Podcasts, Radio Public, Pocket Casts, and Spotify….crazy eh?!?! Curious….check this out….

So, there you have it pal. That was my moment this week, while trying to inspire others I became inspired by one of my students!

Microsoft Tools in the Classroom

Oh it’s been a while, been super busy, but going to jump in for a short and sweet blog posting about how I use a Microsoft Tool in the Classroom.

The tool I am going to share is amazing; OneNote….but what makes this tool that much better is how I can integrate it with multiple other user interfaces with ScreenBeam, Lifeliqe and the OneNote Clipper.

Within my classroom I love using and integrating OneNote into programming. Not only does it make photocopying cheaper (as we can screen shot a worksheet and embed it into our Archer’s Grade 6 OneNote Classroom within our Math / Literacy sections (or anything for that matter), but it also allow all my students to access the same material within their abilities.

What I mean by this is that those whom struggle with reading can use the Immersive Reader to help gain understanding of the content. Students can also use digital inking to highlight key information, details from text to help answer questions. Students can also video record their answers to questions or even voice to text written material within their sections of their personal OneNote Student Pages within Our Classroom OneNote Binder.

I can immediately provide feedback, via inking, videos, checklists and rubics with easy clicks and digital ink. OneNote is my go to for my students and also as an Educator for Pedagocial Documentation! My mark book has numerous, voice recordings of students reading, photos, videos, inserted sway / powerpoint / kahoot and then some links and embedded documents.

One of my favourite pieces is how I can also allow parents access into thier child’s personal spaces within the notebook. I empower my students to share links from thier work within their binders with family and friends, sways and pwoerpoints as well.

OneNote is the be all end all in my opinion! But, when I can embed and grab material from something as interactive and incredible as a program life Lifeliqe with the OneNote Clipper and embed into the Content Area or even Collaboration Space to spark conversation this tool goes beyond spectacular! Now, when I tweak and go the distance with some wicked amazing classroom agility using my ScreenBeam with Classroom Commander that allows me to see student screens live (see what they are working on, or not), freeze their screens for ‘teachable moments’, share links and documents I want them to investigate further, or read with shoulder partners etc…it takes my teaching to new hieghts and levels that allow me to maintain classroom management, student leaders to share material with a click of a button without leaving their seat with ease too!

Add in another one of my favourites; the G-Hold (Large Size Pop Socket for Computers) I can now be extremly mobile, engaging (yes, I talk often with my hands as I am often elated with wicked content in grade 6). G-hold makes my life easier as I can be mobile and engaging without worrying that I will drop my incredible Microsoft Surface Pro Computer (which I love, love, love too).

All in all, OneNote and all these incredible add-ons / add-ins make my life as an educator so much more enjoyable and fun! I have added much more depth to my pedagogy, delivery of content and 21st century usage and implementation of the 21st century competencies within my classroom helping me merge students into 21st century learners, collaborators and problem solvings on a global scale!

To be perfectly honest Microsofts O365 Suite of incredible apps and programs make a teachers dream of a cohesive, engaging, global classroom a reality! I love my apple phone, I love my Ipad BUT there is ONE and ONLY computer for me and that is MY Microsoft Surface Pro…..the best part is all my favourite tools and applications are accessible across all my vast devices no matter Apple or Microsoft, I can easily pop back in forth across devices with ease to make my job much easier and fluent!

I cannot stress enough how much more I enjoy and love my job while using Microsoft Tools such as OneNote!! A few honorable mentions; Teams, Sway (love it), Powerpoint, Flipgrid (a newbie to the collection), OneDrive (my storage dream come true), Office Lens, OneNote Classroom and my Global Go-To; Skype! so many more to choose from too!

Want to learn more about these tools!?!? Ask away, always willing to share my love and passion for these incredible products that make teaching incredible! My classroom is a 21st century room because of Microsoft and these wicked ‘awesome-sauce’ tools!