Isn’t it always? The little things usually make the biggest impression. From just a simple thank you to a yes ma’am, the little things help define a person, a situation, an event, etc. So why are we always shooting for the big win in the classroom setting? Shouldn’t we make more memorable, meaningful small ones?
That’s where the Micro-Lesson comes in. Small, fun, impactful lessons that you can think up over coffee in the morning or discussion in the teacher’s lounge. Set a goal in your PLC meeting to leave with 5 EdTech Micro-Lessons in your bag of tricks. To help you get started, here are 5 ideas to add some fun and excitement to your classroom and lessons:
- PODCAST – You know us and podcasts, we love them! And, so do many others. Who doesn’t like to put on their own “show?” This is easily accomplished by creating small 90-second podcasts covering whatever the current topic is during that day’s lesson. Use your laptop, iPad, etc. to allow the students to come to the “recording booth” and record their opinions, views, assigned topic, etc. Share with parents and students and watch the engagement bloom.
- CLASS-CREATED PRESENTATION – Let students create a group presentation using your multimedia projector or television and add an app like Buncee. Critical thinking and creativity are addressed in an open, comfortable environment where students can learn from each other and explore their creative avenues by sharing ideas.
- PHOTO ALBUM – This one is an easy one and can be accomplished almost every day. We recommend at least once a week, but possibly on the same day, use any digital camera in the room and document the work of the students individually and as a group. Cover that day’s work or the work from the week. Short and simple wins here. Make the creation a group event using Google Slides, Prezi, Buncee or other presentation apps. Once again: sharing excites the parents (And keeps the refrigerator less cluttered)!
- NEWSCAST – It’s video time! Get creative with writing: 3 to 4 topics, 3 to 4 groups. Each group has 10 minutes to pick a newscaster(s), write their summary and design their scene. Their final “report” should be no longer than 60 seconds of air time. Encourage students to get each member in the video and use props if possible. Use your device of choice, record the video (we recommend a Padcaster Setup) and put it on the class/school/district YouTube channel. This can be very informative for your parents and lots of fun for your students!
- GAMIFICATION – This one is a tried and true friend. Gamification has been around since the poster board and sticky stars (and yes, way before that). Several websites and apps (such as ClassDojo) help to bring the fun of achieving goals and attaining badges for a job well done. This helps increase student engagement across the board. Every student needs a “win,” and this helps to create that. Gamification can be a classroom experience or a personal one. Over time, the feedback the student receives will help foster a growth mindset, propelling them throughout their educational journey.
Daqri released Elements 4d several years ago. If you’re not familiar with it, it is a combination app and physical blocks that users scan with their smartphone. When the block is detected, a 3d model of the cube shows up on the user’s device containing a virtual model of the element being scanned.
Not only that, but the the REAL magic comes into play when two elements are placed next to each other physically! If they mix, the app shows the combined result! For example, Hydrogen and Oxygen form a virtual cube of water!
When I am introducing Augmented Reality (AR) to teachers, I hand out PDF-printed blocks or enlarged panels of the blocks (links below) to each teacher. They then have 10-15 minutes to take part in what I call “Elemental Speed Dating!” They have to get up and move around and try to pair their selected element with other elements to see who has a good “bond” with each other! Some elements don’t mix well, so the teachers must keep moving on, trying to find potential “mates” for their elements.
It is so much fun and a great way to get folks up and moving, interacting, and definitely putting a new twist on dating… CARBON dating, anyone? (I’m a Dad. I make bad Dad jokes. It’s what I do.)
Find out more from Daqri: http://elements4d.daqri.com/
My Google folder with the enlarged single panels: HERE!
Ask a student what he or she wants to be when they grow up. What answers do you generally get? Fireman, police officer, etc, sure. Often, though, we hear things like: singer, rapper, President, actor, athlete… While there is nothing wrong with any of these professions, we need to encourage students to look beyond those which are the “limelight” careers.
Perhaps you have students who love sports, but who are just not destined for the field, rink, court, etc. Teachers can help them see that there are all kinds of related jobs to sports that don’t necessarily thrust them into the spotlight nor threaten their physical being. For example, sports medicine is related and covers a variety of jobs: sports doctors and nurses, medical techs, assistants, and more. What about artists in sports? Absolutely! Graphic design for logos, stadium signs, banners of heroes from days gone by and the stars of the current team. What about writers? There are sports writers that work for news and sports outlets, sure. But, did you know sports teams (professional, college, amateur, etc) need writers? Think about media programs that are handed out at games or the biographies that are handed out to sportscasters, etc. How about the person who writes the words and puts up the graphics on the big screens over the field? What about music in sports? Theme songs, walk-off tunes, etc. How about finances: team, player, concession, stadium, etc – all need money and they need people to manage that money… And to manage the people who make it all run – HR personnel, etc.
And, that was JUST sports and we still didn’t cover a sliver of what’s out there!
MUSIC and FILM:
What about the music industry? People have to write the songs. People have to manage the singers. It takes people to book gigs, create album covers, produce the music, make the videos, and everything else that goes with each of THOSE types of jobs. The film industry needs writers, graphic artists, make-up artists, assistants, caterers, and a host of other positions vital to the production of what we all see on the big screen.
What about education? Teachers, administrators, writers, artists… People from all walks of life with varying backgrounds are needed in education (at all levels, too!). Your students might not want to be teachers, but what about participating in other capacities? Administrators help shape and guide the direction of a district, campus, or building. Counselors help students in need. Technology Directors help teachers and students use and implement various technologies to help with education. Don’t forget some of the vital roles played in the school environment: Food services, custodial services, transportation, maintenance, and more.
There are all kinds of ancillary opportunities waiting for people to fill them. We just have to help our students see the potential and the availability. We have to expose students to thinking differently about using their talents in ways they may not have realized were waiting.
Keeping up with the never-ending stream of consciousness that is Twitter can be challenging. Whether you are trying to keep up with the latest trending hashtag or you’re trying to generate the latest trend, using Twitter by itself makes the task difficult. Enter TweetDeck: The organizer and scheduler that will make your Twitter life MUCH simpler. We use it at EduTechGuys and wanted share how it helps us so that it can help you, too.
Though this article is not meant to be a comprehensive tutorial, hopefully it will give you an overview as to why TweetDeck should definitely be in your arsenal.
TweetDeck organizes your Twitter feed, info, followed tags, etc into columns. The site allows you to create tweets and send them as yourself and/or as any other account that you are a member. You can also schedule tweets to go out when YOU want them to. This comes in handy when you are building anticipation for an upcoming event. This way, you can write and schedule your posts in one sitting if you like, but they won’t go out until the date(s) and time(s) that YOU say!After you have scheduled your tweet, it shows up in the “Scheduled” column, so you can always know what you’ve got coming up.
As we mentioned, you can also create or join groups (teams)! This means you can have several people sending out tweets as your company/organization. It also means you might be on several teams and tweet out ONE post to each of those accounts in one swift click. In the image below, see where I can be “myself,” “EduTechGuys,” or “SWAEC?” I can send out a post as any or all of those!
TweetDeck also makes it very easy to follow your favorite people, topics, trends, or Twitterchats! Just use the “Add Column” feature and select from several options:
So, if I chose the “Search” and typed #education, I could add that as a column (far right in image below):
There are a LOT of things you can do with TweetDeck! In fact, one of the workshops/trainings we offer is how to get the most out of your total social media outreach program and TweetDeck is just a piece of that over all experience! Reach out to us today to find out how you can bring the EduTechGuys to your school, business, or organization!
Send your inquiry to: firstname.lastname@example.org
While following my Twitter feed earlier today, I saw a post from Dave Coulier (yes, as in “Uncle Joey” from “Full/Fuller House”) saying that he had some important news. I responded, not sure I qualified as a “News Reporter.” The account responded, letting me know they had hacked the account and wanted to talk about how they did it and what people can do to protect their accounts.
I struck up a conversation with a user going by the name of “MrChikri.” MrChikri said he was from London.
What follows is the transcript of that conversation (Note: all spellings, grammar, etc are left in tact from the transcript):
davidinark: So, you hacked a celebrity account and I reached out in reply (honestly not realizing it had been hacked). Can we talk about HOW you managed to hack the account, and then, more importantly, how do celebrities (and anyone else) protect themselves from being hacked?
After several moments of waiting, little dots began pulsing on the screen as MrChikri typed out an answer. The response came a full 7 minutes after my initial questions.
MrChikri: hackers that hack celebrities social media accounts are all using the same method, anyone can use this method to hack celebrities even you. all it takes is access to one website called http://leakedsource.com and money for a subscription.
MrChikri: when big sites like linkedin, myspace etc gets hacked http://leakedsource.com gets the database of the site and in the database it includes passwords,emails,usernames
MrChikri: i searched daves email on leakedsource and it gave me a list of sites that the email has been registred to
MrChikri: i have a subscription on leakedsource so let me show you a screenshot of how it can look like when getting the password.
davidinark: Ok, what does that look like?
MrChikri: even if you dont have a subscription on leakedsource you can still search emails,usernames but you won’t be able to see the info on it
davidinark: Feel free to block out passwords, etc.
MrChikri then posted the following image (note, all red boxes were added by me, davidinark):
MrChikri: here is dave, myspace got hacked 2013 and over 360M passwords were leaked and as you can see daves was one of them
MrChikri: if you have a subscription this is how it will look like:
davidinark: So, this means that Dave hadn’t updated his password since at least 2013!?
MrChikri: yes sir
MrChikri: most celebs use same passwords on all social media
MrChikri: i managed to get into daves instagram account with 500K followers
MrChikri: because he have been using the same passwords for his social media wich is very bad to do
davidinark: Yoy. Yes, that is VERY bad thing to do. I can only suppose that people get relaxed and assume everything is safe. They leave their passwords the same for years and never realize how exposed they have made themselves.
MrChikri: people like kylie jenner, katy perry, drake etc have been hacked using this method.
MrChikri: my tip is just change your password every month and don’t use same passwords on same social medias, also make sure you enable “Login Verification” on twitter and “2 Step verification on your emails” and “2 Factor Authentication” on your instagram
davidinark: I have to ask what keeps you from doing bad things on their accounts? Why are you willing to expose the problem and talk about it rather than cause absolute havoc, as many hackers would normally be apt to do?
davidinark: Your advice is spot on! I hope you are able to communicate that to the celebrities and others who AREN’T updating/changing their info!
MrChikri: well tbh i tweet crazy stuff to it just depends who the person is,
davidinark: Haha, nothing malicious, just crazy, eh?
MrChikri: i mainly hack accounts just to promote my instagram & snapchat, never my twitter cause i just got suspended today thats why im dming you off this one
davidinark: I assumed this was a burner account. 🙂
MrChikri: instagram is very easy to hack though you won’t belive it
MrChikri: you heard about One Direction?
davidinark: Getting hacked? No. What happened there?
MrChikri: instagram should patch this way to hack accs cause this is just (ridiculous)
MrChikri: all you have to do is this
MrChikri: google “instagram report hacked account” and go to that link, https://www.facebook.com/help/instagram/contact/740949042640030 … and this should come up
MrChikri: so then u just put ur username and etc
MrChikri: 5-10 mins after you will recieve an email saying this
MrChikri: so this might seem hard but it is very simple, i putted in @twhiddleston ‘s instagram account to get into it, and then googled “Tom hiddleston holding a paper”
MrChikri: i found this and it matches the instagram email that they want me to do
MrChikri: then i just photoshopped the picture as you can see it does look legit
MrChikri: i sent that pic to them and after 17 hours i got this email
davidinark: Very legit! (In response to the “legit” comment above)
MrChikri: they gave me a link to reset the password and then i got into his account
MrChikri: this is how dumb instagram is!
davidinark: Yeah, I can see where that wouldn’t be hard to do at all. So, how would someone stop that from happening to themselves?
MrChikri: if you go into your instagram settings and scroll down til you see “Two-Factor Authentication” and enable that, do you know what that is?
davidinark: Yeap! (**See below)
MrChikri: yes that’s what you need to do enable that, but i know a way to bypass that
MrChikri: i can only bypass it on instagram
davidinark: Definitely need that enabled on any accounts that offer it.
davidinark: I appreciate you taking the time to explain how it is done, but even more that you are interested in helping folks PREVENT it in the first place.
MrChikri: there is one more thing i need to say about twitter hacking. On twitter someone hacks you, you’re first changing the password right and then think that the hacker got logged out of the acc cause you changed the pass
MrChikri: but when changing a twitter password you need to goto “Apps connected” and revoke every device from the account
MrChikri: then the hacker gets logged out
MrChikri: now dave got his account back but he only changed his password, i still have access to his twitter…
davidinark: Ah! Yeah, I bet most folks don’t know about that or even think about that!
MrChikri: literally no one that i’ve hacked does that lol
davidinark: Well, I am glad I reached out to Dave’s (er, your) tweet. Thank you for sharing HOW the accounts get hacked and how folks can PREVENT it from happening in the future.
I then asked MrChikri to look up my account information in the system to see if I was in there. I was. Luckily, the information turned out to be stale (old), but MrChikri’s advice is spot-on: Change the info anyway!
**NOTE: Two-Factor Authorization is a security measure in which verification takes place using TWO forms of ID. This usually entails using a cell phone number that receives a text with a special code to be entered for verification. The user gets a text from the site. If everything is on the up-and-up, the user enters that code on the site. If a user gets a request to enter the code but they never asked for the code, someone is trying to hack the account.