38: An Educator E-portfolio service (kind of)

I was culling the herd my personal book collection last week, when I came across my Educator Portfolio. While wistfully regarding my beginning efforts, I realized that I should update my portfolio. My second thought was that I should also place it online.

How to do that securely, and invite a potential employer to peruse the personal portfolio?  I think I will use Threering.com, an app I currently use. By the way, it’s also free.

Threering.com is an app/website that allows educators to take snapshots of, and track the progression of students’ work. Its appears to be a beneficial service, despite being in a perceived ‘beta’ stage. The strength of Threering is that it allows an educator to provide parents with a security code that allows them to view their progeny’s progress.

So my third thought to myself was, “Why not setup a portfolio, instead of a class?”. I suppose I will discover how well this works one day, when I find the time to update my portfolio.

Measured Thoughts, Shared

It’s no secret that I’ve previously worked for The Manitoba Teachers’ Society (MTS) as a member of their support staff. As such, I am well informed of what they do, but I never really appreciated why they do until I actually became a teacher.

I spent time at another MTS Teacher Action Cohorts (TAC) meeting last Saturday, March 9. TAC are a group that talk with teachers regarding issues of educational interest. Issues that are currently explored, can be found on the mbteach.org website. TAC participants were introduced to additional skill-sets, provided by the experience and knowledge of Ms. Debra Radi. I truly appreciated the quality of information presented, regarding facilitation and leading groups of professional adults.

At our TAC meeting, it was noted how MTS is much more than collective bargaining and legal advice for its 13,400 Manitoban teachers. On the ride home, I was able to reflect on the session, and realized I am proud to be a part of one of the many pro-active aspects of MTS. I have to acknowledge the experienced shared by members of the TAC group, who are each from varied schools, levels, divisions, educational roles, and career spans. This is where I find the bulk of wealth in TAC meetings, where the experiences are shared, measured, and employed again. MTS is much more than a static “due on a paycheque” for the average professional to take note of. MTS is active, and educators benefit. I also wondered on the same ride home, in the context of the strife other provincial teacher organizations are experiencing, how many Manitoban teachers truly understand why they should be more involved in their local associations?

In my studies to attain teacher certification, it was once stated, “To be a better teacher, become a better person”. If I am truly becoming a better person, then I can’t think of a better group of teachers to learn from than my fellow cohorts.

37: Engrade and AlwaysPrepped

Two new sites to consider: Engrade.com appears to be a cloud-based plan book, while Alwaysprepped.com purports to aggregate information from multiple online educational sites. As an educator, I really appreciate the ease of use for teachers that these site are striving towards. As an individual interested in social media, I’m also quite cautious of placing student information on a cloud-based system.

With all the online teacher-assist sites that are emerging, sometimes I wonder if the ‘flipped classroom’ model will eventually become the norm.

36: More about Ning

As I mentioned, I’m preparing to inform colleagues about what a Ning is, and how to set one up. As a result, some of my web sleuthing discovered this handy little Ning Prezi. Enjoy!

35: Meeting the outcomes, fair with squares

Teacher’s are constantly tweaking and updating their lessons to meet outcomes more efficiently. If you’re like me, you’re always looking for more efficient rubrics that could potentially cut down on grading time.

Here’s a great rubric creation page, from edtechteacher.org

34: Ning noobs, like myself

For one of the many groups I belong to, I’m supposed to help out with explaining the functions of a Ning (a customizable social network), and I stumbled across this link. It appears to be a good place to start, for any Ning newbie.