Archive for the ‘tutorials’ Category

Differentiated instruction (sometimes referred to as differentiated learning) involves providing students with different avenues to acquiring content; to processing, constructing, or making sense of ideas; and to developing teaching materials so that all students within a classroom can learn effectively, regardless of differences in ability (Tomlinson, Carol 2001).

Identifying differences in ability is a key step in gathering technology resources for students to utilize.  We can easily identify students that have differences in ability via pupils that have an IEP.  Often, we can access resources that we have used for these students and modify them to meet the needs of other students.  This really is a good foundation to draw upon; however, we want to focus our attention on student strengths and constructing knowledge when it comes to differentiation, and multiple intelligences are another good place to start.

Howard Gardner is a leading researcher on the topic of multiple intelligences and is an excellent resource to draw from when focusing on differentiated instruction.

http://www.howardgardner.com/MI/mi.html

Gardner has extensive research and resources that can be found at the above link, and I highly recommend reading through his information on multimedia and technology and their relationship to multiple intelligences.  Some other good Gardner resources can be found at the following links:

What are my learning strengths?  (Inventory)
http://mail.nppsd.org:8080/~nhokanson/MI/MI_Inventory.pdf

Products for Multiple Intelligences
http://mail.nppsd.org:8080/~nhokanson/MI/MI_Product_Grid.pdf

Utilizing Gardeners inventory is a quick way to identify learner’s strengths, and the product lists provide teachers with ideas on what various students might create in a project based environment to show what they know.  Most of these products can be produced via technology tools.  This product list can provide a reference point to work from in order to create lessons that will build a foundation for varied learners to construct knowledge and reach their project goal.

As a former building intervention team chairperson I found myself faced with researching various strategies to provide accommodations for students that were struggling in various subject areas.  I found technology to be one tool that met many students’ needs.  The following web site and tutorial page is an older example of online activities that shared similar information in a variety of ways.  The strengths and needs of particular students in my classroom guided my efforts to assist students in gaining the basic information in my geography classroom, and not all students completed all of the online activities.  The activities helped me to differentiate instruction, practice, assessment, and re-teaching based on particular students’ abilities.  After those basic skills were in place I could then draw upon Gardner’s multiple intelligences product ideas to expand student opportunities where they could construct knowledge via projects to show what they knew.

Hokanson’s World Geography
http://homepage.mac.com/nhokanson/Sites/socialstudies/geography/index.html

Hokanson’s World Geography Tutorials
http://homepage.mac.com/nhokanson/Sites/socialstudies/geography/tutorials.html

Most of the activities in the above links were created, over time, by my students and I via an online “quiz maker” called Quia or a program called Hot Potatoes.  I also utilized a program called Game Show Presenter to do whole class review over basic information that students needed in my geography classes.  These activities served as scaffolding exercises to build knowledge toward student created projects.

Quia:  http://www.quia.com

Hot Potatoes (Installed on all NPPSD district computers since 2007!):  http://hotpot.uvic.ca/

Game Show Presenter:  http://www.almorale.com/

Now, with today’s World Wide Web there are many online resources that serve the purpose of many of the initial activities I created years ago (See links below).  Teachers also have access to technology based resources via subject area textbooks especially online.

Example web site (blog) with links to resources for differentiation:  http://oxpower.wordpress.com/

Textbook Resources:   http://www.glencoe.com/sec/socialstudies/ushistory/taj2005/index.php4

Secondary Online Resources:  http://mail.nppsd.org:8080/~nhokanson/online_resources_hs/index.html

Elementary Online Resources:  http://mail.nppsd.org:8080/~nhokanson/online_resources/index.html

All of these resources are simply tools to assist students as they construct knowledge, but each tool and resource allows for deeper understanding of content and provides a foundation for students to build upon their strengths as they piece together information.  Remember, technology is one vehicle toward learning, it is not the focus, and it cannot be an event.  Technology is a tool that can be utilized to differentiate instruction and ultimately support individualized learning.

Other “quiz” makers to explore:

http://yacapaca.com/

http://testmoz.com/

http://www.contentgenerator.net/

http://www.curriculumbits.com/prodimages/details/misc/quizscorer.swf

http://www.quiz-creator.com/blog/2009/09/free-online-quiz-creator-tools-create-online-quizzes/

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I have been thinking about ways to entice the old guard into the digital world in a meaningful way that gets them to look at their strategies for teaching in a new light.  As I’ve contemplated this challenge I have tried to take a list of benchmarks (I know, I know!!!) as a baseline to build an online course (based on an open courseware approach).

In a matter of roughly five hours I have created the following framework for a project-based learning approach.  The projects/assessments are not there specifically as I would have students piece that together based on their needs (see student resources).  It is a work in progress, but I am considering some sort of professional development that follows this approach.

Hokanson’s American History

A few odds and ends keep showing up on my blog as I share examples of how to blog in various professional development workshops that I am facilitating this June.  We are podcasting, blogging, doing digital storytelling, video conferencing, trying out online tools, and experimenting with several tech gadgets including the Wii.  We have also been involved in Quest Atlantis professional development too.  It has been quite rewarding so far, and I myself have learned so much.  Our training resources can be found at one of my wikis:  HIT – Hokanson’s Instructional Technology Wiki. Enjoy!

I love the Common Craft site and the informative, easy to understand videos that explain everything from Twitter to saving money.  My favorite is from a couple of years ago during the Halloween season:

wordpress_logoOnce again we find changes to the Dashboard of WordPress with the new WordPress 2.7. The following tutorials are to help new users get started and old users get acclimated to the new Dashboard look.

There are several tutorials that are appearing on the web, and I hope to narrow those down that are most helpful without reinventing the wheel. The WordPress site does have links to articles that provide text and images that may be helpful to new and old users (I have also listed links to some of these below) and the following link is to an article on recent changes: December 2008 Dashboard Changes. Enjoy!

My new WordPress Tutorials

WordPress Dashboard Introduction

WordPress Create a New Post

WordPress Edit Post

WordPress Create a Link

WordPress Add an Image

WordPress Embed a Video

Most of the older WordPress version “Screencasts” now take users to various articles on using the new Dashboard; however, some go to older articles and videos/screencasts  (links below):

WordPress Created Tutorials

Getting Started/Troubleshooting

What should I do first? [screencast]

How do I change my password? [screencast]

I lost my password – what now? [screencast]

Settings

General Settings [screencast]

Discussion Settings [screencast]

Reading Settings [screencast]

Basics

Where’s my dashboard (and what’s it for)? [screencast]

HTML & QuickTags vs. Visual Editor [screencast]

How can I edit the title and permalink of my post? [screencast]

How do I add links to other sites using the HTML or Visual editor? [screencast]

Having a static page at the front of the blog [screencast]

How do I manage (organize, edit, delete) my posts after they’ve been written or published? [screencast]

How do I manage (organize, edit, delete) pages after they’ve been published or saved? [screencast]

How do I save and manage draft posts? How does auto-save work? [screencast]

How do I change the time or date for my post? How do I set my post to publish in the future? [screencast]

How do I manage (approve, unapprove, mark as spam, delete) comments made to my blog? [screencast]

Adding Media

What filetypes can I upload?

How do I add video files to my posts? [screencast]

How do I post a Youtube video? [screencast]

How do I upload pictures? [screencast]

How do I add an audio file to my post? [screencast]

How do I add documents or other media to my blog posts? [screencast]

How do I post or embed a PowerPoint in WordPress? (Video Tutorial by Neil Hokanson)

How do I create a picture gallery in my blog post? [screencast]

Intermediate

What is a widget? [screencast]

How do I add summaries/excerpts to my posts so that the full post doesn’t display on my blog’s front page? [screencast]

What’s a tag? How do I add tags to my posts? How do I manage tags? [screencast]

What’s a category? How do I add and manage categories? [screencast]

How do I manage (edit, delete, add, arrange) my tags? [screencast]

How do I manage (arrange, add, delete) categories? [screencast]

Which keyboard shortcuts can I use in the WordPress editor? [screencast]

Advanced

Blog Stats [screencast]

How do I add more authors / users to my blog? [screencast]

How do I change the author of a post? [screencast]

How do I stop another author editing a post at the same time as me? [screencast]

How do I use the Press This! bookmarklet [screencast]

Using Windows Live Writer [screencast]

Bringing content into WordPress from Microsoft Word [screencast]

How do I write WordPress blog posts with the ScribeFire Firefox add-on? [screencast]

In my WordPress Basics tutorials I failed to go over Design –> Extras.  Here is the tutorial I created today and an explanation of its features:  WordPress Design Extras.  Enjoy!

In my continued quest to discover ready made, valuable, computing tutorials for teachers and students, especially FREE resources, I came across Tech Ease in iTunes (I now have a couple of iPods full of these tutorials and will be watching them over the coming days!).  The Florida Center for Instructional Technology, USF College of Education, at the University of South Florida has produced several how to video tutorials for Mac and Windows applications with printable .pdf files and instructions.

The products range form iPhoto, Garageband, Audacity, Windows Movie Maker, Flickr, Delicious, Google docs and so much more!!!  Links to the sites follow:

Tech-Ease Windows

Tech-Ease Mac

Links to Tech-Ease screencasts from iTunes:

PDF (Printable Instructions)

OS X

Podcasting

Digital Video

iPod

Inspiration

Web 2.0

GIS

Blackboard

iLife/iWork

Second Life

Our district does have a subscription to Atomic Learning that meets many of our tutorial needs; however, when programs and applications change it is nice to have resources such as these, produced at the University of South Florida, that prove to be very beneficial especially to teachers and students.

Another wonderful resource I have used for computer basics is Harvard’s Computer Science E-1 (It has graced my iPod since the Fall of 2007).

Harvard Computer Science E-1 Website

Harvard Computer Science E-1 iTunes

Enjoy!