Archive for September, 2011

YouTube for Teachers

Friday, September 30th, 2011

When I taught English at high schools in Canada, I was a regular at the local library borrowing interesting new short films created by the National Film Board.

YouTube was a wonderful addition to my ability to find visual examples of complex ideas, interviews and performances both historical and current, and so much more. However, YouTube is blocked in so many schools that I have to teach my education students how to download the videos for themselves so they could use them inside the school walls.

That barrier seems to be breaking down or, at least, a new announcement from YouTube will help. YouTube for Teachers is now available and just a little way in you will discover ways to use the service efficiently in your classroom. The creation of playlists, quizzes, video quests, and more are just a few things teachers new to the site will learn. I think, in time, districts will begin to reduce their restrictions on YouTube in the classroom. In the meantime, I would urge you to become a member of YouTube Teachers to keep engaged with the discussion.

YouTubeTeachers

YouTube Teachers

More States add Online Learning to Graduation Requirements

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

This month, the Idaho Board of Education voted to require high school students to take two of their credits online in order to qualify for graduation although that may drop to one.

Idaho is now the fourth state to mandate high school students take at least one class through distance learning. Other states requiring online coursework include Alabama and Florida.  Michigan was the first to make that requirement and teachers in EDMT 330 learn how to develop courses online using Moodle.

The thinking behind the move to at least a little online learning is that it might help to improve technological abilities and prepare them for college where they may experience online learning and virtual training is becoming more popular each year in the workplace.