HD_Links: Getting Started

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons - Click for copyright.
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons - Click for copyright.

The new school year is quickly approaching. Many of you are already sitting through professional development sessions or readying your classrooms for the arrival of young minds ready for molding.

This week’s links are here to help you get ready for your new school year…

There are two educational technology experts everyone should follow. The first is David Warlick and his incredibly thought-provoking blog 2¢ Worth. In this blog, David likes to describe his travels as he works with teachers all over the country. Within those narratives, themes and invaluable insight are shared. The other blog to follow is the new Tumblr by Will Richardson. Richardson, like Warlick takes on the many issues teachers face in reaching the student of the 21st century. Both blogs give plenty to think about and inspire new approaches to teaching with each new post.

With each new year, we find that our equipment and software are also a year older. Technology that worked well five years ago has suddenly started to show its age. On top of that, there just isn’t the staff or resources to upgrade technology in your school or district. In Edgalaxy‘s letter of the week, plenty of practical solutions for refreshing the technology in your district are offered. Following their tips, one can see the light of the end of the tunnel that is a long school year with outdated technology.

Also from Edgalaxy, there are several good suggestions for calculator games. Want to get students acquainted with the calculators they’ll be using throughout the year? Check out the aforementioned calculator games to break the ice a bit in your math class. (BTW, I love how the other English-speaking nations call it “Maths.”)

Over at School Library Journal, there’s an interesting take on fair use and copyright. It seems that as long as materials are used in a transformative manner, educators are generally protected from coyright laws. for example, using a television ad to study body images in the media is an acceptable use. Read the rest of the piece to get a full picture of what the author is saying on this hot-button topic. Copyright and fair use are certainly important considerations as one begins to choose the media he or she will use this school year.

Looking for some new lesson plans to spice up your 2011-2012 class? Look no further than the lesson plans provided by The New York Times. There are lesson plans for all subjects across the curriculum available for your perusial. Most, if not all of the lessons tie in the country’s most read newspaper so that you can make those real-world connections with your students.

That should be enought to get you started for the year. What are you reading to get you inspired? What new tools or resources have you discovered that you’re willing to try this school year?

Zac Early is an instructional specialist with the eMINTS National Center and he’s ready to get starte!