Part Three: Online Tools to Support Critical Thinking

You may be asking yourself: what technology is best suited to facilitating open dialogue and critical thinking for my students? In the third and final post of this blog series, I felt it was important to give you specific information regarding tools that can be used to facilitate curiosity, engagement, reflection, and all of the … Continue reading Part Three: Online Tools to Support Critical Thinking

Collaborative Teaching for Integrated Learning: Lessons from Finland

We encourage students to collaborate all the time, but as teachers, we often work alone. This is unfortunate because some of the best work I see at conferences occurs when groups of teachers come together to share their ideas and compare approaches.  Not only do such interactions lead to new ideas, but they also help teachers from different disciplines … Continue reading Collaborative Teaching for Integrated Learning: Lessons from Finland

Using GIS in Geography and History Classrooms

In the last decade, GIS has dominated the discipline of Geography. It has also started to reshape the way history is taught. But what exactly is GIS? How does it work? How can it be applied to the the teaching of history? And what are some options for using GIS in classrooms? What is GIS? … Continue reading Using GIS in Geography and History Classrooms

One Size Fits All? Hardly.

If “one size fits all” doesn’t work for clothes, why do we expect it to work for teaching?  If students learn by building knowledge from previously acquired concepts and experiences, we can expect that we will need to be prepared to teach by introducing multiple analogies and ways of explaining new concepts.  As teachers, we … Continue reading One Size Fits All? Hardly.

Tech Tools to Liven Up Your Classroom: 5 Trends from FETC

Hekademia attended FETC in Orlando a few weeks ago and left inspired to try some new tools in our online courses. As teachers in blended classrooms emphasized at the conference, even if you don’t have computers or tablets available in your classroom, most high school students have smartphones. It’s easier than ever to incorporate technology … Continue reading Tech Tools to Liven Up Your Classroom: 5 Trends from FETC

Why are the people of Troublesome Creek, Kentucky blue?

When this question is posed in a science class, you can immediately see postures improve as students sit up a bit straighter, disengage from their iPods (or whatever electronic device had their attention), and gaze attentively as they await the answer. This is where the magic of case studies in science begins. Instead of providing … Continue reading Why are the people of Troublesome Creek, Kentucky blue?

The 4 Guiding Elements of Competency Design at Hekademia

We have discovered that there really isn’t one, single prescribed approach to competency-based education. States, schools, content providers, and many others are interested in developing and implementing competency-based education. Understandably, each of these providers will have unique approaches to the pedagogy. The discrepancies that arise often result in disagreements as to what the process should … Continue reading The 4 Guiding Elements of Competency Design at Hekademia

Adaptive Competency eLearning: Self-Paced Learning at its Best

What is Adaptive Competency eLearning? Adaptive: the learning environment (or technology) responds to the student’s level of understanding and directs them to the content that will help them make connections. Competency: students must demonstrate that they are competent in each standard in order to move to the next module of study (an understanding of 75% … Continue reading Adaptive Competency eLearning: Self-Paced Learning at its Best

Rubrics Part 1: Parts and Pieces

Rubrics are the nexus of curriculum objectives, assessment, and instruction.  Any discrepancies in the planning of these 3 major fields will become apparent in the rubric when it is time to evaluate the student. Consequently, creating a meaningful rubric is a challenging task for even the most skilled educator. Hekademia and Virtual High School put a great deal … Continue reading Rubrics Part 1: Parts and Pieces

Be a Catalyst! Reflections on Project-Based Learning

I remember standing in a glass corridor as one of my university professors mapped out the various pathways of the human brain on the window. We’d just bumped into each other in the hall and I had expressed frustration with the project he had assigned for that term; it was 2006, and for our Digital … Continue reading Be a Catalyst! Reflections on Project-Based Learning