Edcanvas, PD and the Common Core

Saturday, March 9, 2013
First off, I need to send a shout out to the snow gods because I got my snow day.  It was a day later than expected, but I got it and it was major.  We got about a foot of snow.
 It was actually pretty productive as well.  I played with the kiddos, corrected some projects, did some planning, made pizza with the midgets and then in kicked the ADD, but it was a good kick.
Myself and a team of my colleagues attended a Common Core workshop the other day that was supposed to help the non math and ELA teacher navigate how and when to incorporate the CCSS in their classrooms. The workshop was .........eeeehhhhh.  I've been really studying the CCSS for a couple years now and she really didn't teach me anything I didn't know.  I'm not saying that from a place of I know a lot, either.  Everyone at the table felt the same way.  On top of teaching three fabulous 8th grade social studies classes, I am also the department chair for social studies at the middle school and I'm really try to bring the CCSS to my department with ease to initiate understanding.  It is not easy because there doesn't seem to be any real answers out there. In my internet travels, I'm finding that social studies teachers are struggling on what their new role really is.  I don't have any amazing and fabulous answers for my department, yet, but I decided to give them more resources.  I got my weekly email from the fabulous people at the Teaching Channel and my mind started to spin.  Our district is looking for people to propose ideas for outside of school hours professional development.  I decided I wanted to make a PD video list that lasted about one hour and focused solely on the Common Core State Standards and social studies.  I was going to do it on Google Drive but decided to use a new tool I had signed up for instead.  In walks Edcanvas!  Edcanvas allows you to curate connected content, videos, images, websites, Google Documents, etc.and place them onto one page for easy access.  One of the best things about Edcanvas is you can create a class and monitor who is logging in to work and how long they are spending on each activity.  I decided to give it a roll:

I organized everything and added minutes onto the lengths of videos so people could plan and spread out their viewing.  I emailed this to my Assistant Superintendent and she gave me a thumbs up and told me she can't wait to watch the videos.  For the teachers to get their PD hours, I'm creating a learning log on Google Drive and I have set up a class called Professional Development so they can chart their activity.
This is what it looks like for the teacher:
So far, I'm loving Edcanvas!!!  Here is what mine looks like:

 And here is access (you can embed it in a website):

Click here to access the canvas if you are having difficulty viewing it above.

If you are a social studies teacher, or simply a middle school teacher, feel free to browse my canvas above.  I found some great videos on activities and ideas that are pretty amazing. I'm already making a new canvas.....Professional Development Part II: Return of the Common Core!   If you have any great resources, share as well.

No comments