Mimio Educator

Helping Students Become Better Writers Through Brainstorming

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Thu, Mar 16, 2017

Asking students to write is one of the most difficult tasks we require. It tasks the writer with managing multiple cognitive functions all at one time: idea creation, organization, word choice, grammar rules, voice, correct sentences, and focusing on a topic. Whew. Writing this myself is taking a lot of hard work!

Because of the load that is placed on the writer, students are more successful when some of the individual tasks are broken down and isolated for them. Teachers do this in a variety of ways. We have them spell check at the end so they can focus on the ideas at the beginning. We have them review their sentences for run-ons or incompletion. We help them to organize in paragraphs. And most importantly, we try to help them with original and complete ideas. 

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Topics: curriculum, 21st Century Skills, tips for teachers

March Tips and Training for Teachers

Posted by Travis Rink on Thu, Mar 2, 2017

March is finally here, which means we can bid farewell to winter and welcome the warmer weather that comes with spring! While you’re doing your springtime cleaning, why not spruce up your lessons as well?

Here is our collection of engaging themed content for March:

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Topics: Educational Software, Education Technology, curriculum, Training, tips for teachers

Getting Students to Think Deeper About Content Using Technology

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Wed, Mar 1, 2017

As I conduct classroom walkthroughs with my fellow administrators, we often discuss the role of technology use in the classroom. One of the indicator areas on our form is “student technology use,” which we mark if students are using technology. The next indicator, “technology is used to enhance the lesson,” is a little more tricky. There are times when technology may be used, but we have to consider whether or not it is really enhancing anything about the lesson.

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Topics: Education Technology, curriculum, tips fpr teachers

Free Incentives to Motivate Students

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Tue, Feb 21, 2017

 

Finding ways to motivate students can be difficult. Finding ways to motivate students when you have a tight budget can be even harder. But with a little creativity, a teacher can find multiple tricks to bringing a free incentive system into the classroom. 

These ideas are separated into four different areas that research has indicated motivates students: adult approval, peer approval, consumables, and independent rewards. The level a student is motivated to obtain one of these will fluctuate from one student to the next, but by a quick survey, a teacher can find the area that calls to each student and then have a list of ideas for engaging them to work for a reward. Most of these are free and take very little effort, but will be greatly appreciated. Here are some suggestions for how to integrate these ideas easily to make them work for you:

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Topics: curriculum, tips for teachers

5 Math Apps That Are Great for Differentiation

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Thu, Feb 16, 2017

 

Differentiation is both a complex concept and a critical tool to meet the needs of today’s learners. At times, I have seen the complexity overwhelm a teacher to the point of frustration. Teachers will tell me it is just too much, and they are returning to the whole group instruction model that they used before.

While front-of-the-room learning isn’t a bad concept, it is difficult knowing that all of your students are not at the same place and you can’t do anything to help all the differing levels. Technology has helped change this—especially in classrooms with a 1:1 model. With a device in the hands of each student, teachers can more easily differentiate to meet the needs of the individuals. 

So when it comes to math, where is a teacher to start? Here is a list that touches on a few of the major players in the market—each one has its advantages and disadvantages. Some of these are connected to large textbook companies, while some are more independently operated. If you are seriously considering the time and money needed to invest in one of these, here is a starting point for your research:

 

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Topics: STEM Lessons, Math, curriculum, tips for teachers, STEM

Why Coding? Part 3: DIY Coding in the Elementary Classroom

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Tue, Feb 14, 2017

As a classroom teacher, you may have heard about the recent push to incorporate more computer science and coding into students’ lives. The problem could be—as it is with most teachers I know—that you feel vastly underqualified to teach anything in that realm. Coding seems like an intimidating subject and something that requires a lot of professional learning before jumping in.

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Topics: Science Lessons, STEM Lessons, curriculum, 21st Century Skills, tips for teachers

Why Coding? Part 2: Exploring Coding Curricula

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Wed, Feb 8, 2017

When looking at the big picture of a school system, it can be daunting to think about effective ways to incorporate change. Systems are complex by nature, and education can be a hard one to change for a variety of reasons.

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Topics: Science Lessons, STEM Lessons, curriculum, 21st Century Skills

Black History Month: 10 African-American Innovators

Posted by Travis Rink on Thu, Feb 2, 2017

Now that Black History Month is here, you may be looking for ways to tie the celebration into your lessons. The National Education Association (NEA) offers an array of lesson plans for students of all ages that can help you integrate the subject into your classroom. And if you’re looking for EdTech tools that celebrate diversity and technology, check out these resources from Edutopia. You can also access lesson packs on MimioConnect®, our online educator community, with activities to help you celebrate African-American history all month long.

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Topics: Science Lessons, STEM Lessons, curriculum

February Tips and Training for Teachers

Posted by Travis Rink on Wed, Feb 1, 2017

February may be the shortest month, but it’s also filled with fun celebrations, fascinating history, and notable events. Here is our collection of lessons and content to help you engage your students all month long:

February Calendar and Activities: Fill your students’ hearts and minds during the month of February with our Valentine-themed calendar and morning meeting lessons. Use this daily calendar to engage your students with meeting, graphing, and math activities, and track attendance with the included chart.

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Topics: Lessons, curriculum, Training, tips for teachers

Why Coding? Part 1: The Future of Computer Science Education

Posted by Kelly Bielefeld on Thu, Jan 26, 2017

 

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Topics: STEM Lessons, curriculum, 21st Century Skills, tips for teachers

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