Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Developing a GAME Plan

As a teacher, I understand that I must step back and analyze my teaching practices and dispositions. I believe in order to grow there must be reflection and self-assessment. Although I am a technology native, I have not had much formal training on using technology in the classroom. The International Society for Technology in Education has compiled a list of technology standards and performance indicators. I have taken a look at this document and have identified areas where my practices can improve. I have found three areas I believe I can strengthen. My goal is to grow in the following areas.

3d Manage student learning activities in a technology-enhanced environment

5a . Use technology resources to engage in on going professional development and lifelong learning

5d Use technology to communicate and collaborate with peers, parents, and the larger community in order to nurture student learning

My actions for 3d are:
¡ Utilize student’s cell phones/ home technology for lessons (photography lessons, audio rescoring,  posting to blogs)
¡ Keep an updated classroom blog for a flipped classroom model and to benefit students with poor attendance.

My actions for 5a are:
¡ seek professional development opportunities focusing on technology
o   online
o   in the city
¡ Continue to read blogs
o   Implement findings/ideas from blogs in the classroom

My actions for 5d are:
¡ Require students to have an email address and online grade book login
¡ Keep a classroom blog that is linked to the community
¡ Reach out to parents using technology
o   Celly (text service)
o   Email
o   Social media

I will monitor my growth in these areas by keeping a checklist and journal. I believe keeping these documents will help me hold myself accountable for meeting these goals. I will also map out specific steps I need to accomplish before meeting these goals.  For example, I will need to get parent’s cell phone numbers and email addresses to communicate with them using technology.

I will evaluate my completion by referring back to my checklist. If I have completed items on the checklist, that will be a measurement of growth. I hope that my development will improve my classroom environment.


  1. Jen
    I like the idea that you mentioned of the flipped classroom. I have heard about this from other teachers and have been looking into it myself. Have you ever looked into the website It is a website designed for flipped classrooms and allows you to post videos, but you can break them up into shorter chunks and also attach questions to it. So could have them watch a one minute clip and them give them a multiple choice question over it. It is a little bit of work to set it up, but once that is done, you flipped classroom would be on its way. The other thing is having them get a gmail account and then starting a Google Plus community with them. That way their parents could join as well. Just a couple of ideas for you. Good Luck

    1. Kelly,

      I have not heard of It sounds like it can be a great resource. Although it can take some effort to create the file, I bet it will be well worth it. I have worried that students would “glaze over” vital information in a flipped classroom. This prevents that. Thanks for the resource!
      I almost forgot about Google+ as a social media platform. It didn’t make an impact in the social networking community, but that is what makes it perfect for school!

      Excellent suggestions! Thank you!

  2. Jen,

    Like Kelly said above, I think the idea of a flipped classroom is a very interesting thing to explore. The idea really fascinates me and I'm curious as to if it is something I can successfully implement. Based on my research, I do not think it is something that can only be partially attempted... it requires a full-on effort to get it done. It's exciting and somewhat scary to think about!

    Regardless, I really like your ideas and your plan... I too would like to make a point of reading blogs more often. I recently changed the aggregator I'm using to feedly, which I enjoy thus far, but it will come down to being regimented about setting aside time to read the blogs.

    Great post!


    1. Shawn,
      I agree. When using a flipped classroom model you have to go all in. Doing it half way would not be effective.
      I enjoy reading blogs. It is a great resource for teachers. There are some great things happening in the blog world! It is also wonderful to be a part of a larger teaching community. I believe blogs will keep me updated on new technologies, teaching methods, and subject specific news once we finish our masters program.

  3. Jen (and Shawn),

    I agree that a flipped classroom can be very effective. I started to flip my Precalculus this school year and it was working pretty well. But, I have to admit, I slacked off. Partly because I spend too much time on this Master's stuff, but, I'm just finding that staying so far ahead in order to make the videos (or find them) was becoming very overwhelming. If you have any tips on how to make it less time consuming, I'd be all ears.

    I do believe in starting small though, and the good news is that I am already good to go for next year with the lessons I already made. I guess we just have to do a little something each year, and eventually we'll start getting closer to getting it right!

    In one of our classes, a professor recommended the app Remind101. It's a way to easily text parents or students. The nice thing about it is that you just give people a code, they themselves text that number to "join" your group, and then you just send messages to the group. I like being able to send out a message very easily to the whole group without having to maintain an email list. If they change numbers, or want to leave the group, they do it all themselves. I've enjoyed using it.


    1. Erika,
      I commend you for implementing a flipped classroom while being enrolled in a masters program! I don’t know how you find time in the day! I am sure it will be easier to keep up with a flipped classroom once we graduate. Have you looked into joining a math teachers network? If there are other PreCalc teachers using the flipped classroom model you can share videos.
      Thanks for reminding me of Remind 101! I have only been the recipient of texts, but it was very useful.

  4. Great use of technology that your students already have and love to use. You will have not problem getting the students to engage in your art lesson. Are you going to have more of like photos of the day contests or are you going to turn your students into news journalists? I am sure you will have more then enough images to pick from. Will this all be homework for your students, I am sure your school has policies set for use of cell phones during school hours. Love the idea for an art lesson dealing with cellphone photos. Great job, john

  5. I think your goals are attainable and challenging at the same time. You seem to have a clear idea of where you are going and how you will get there. The concept of a flipped classroom is intriguing to me but with the low amount of technology in my county's homes, I doubt it would work here. Do you think that it would work in your county? Also, I think your ideas of photography lessons are valid in today's world of social media where everyone thinks they are a photographer. Your students will benefit from standing out in a society where everyone is the same. Great post, Misty