Skip to main content
Create interactive lessons using any digital content including wikis with our free sister product
. Get it on the
Presentations and Resources
Pages and Files
6 Ways to Show...
Hacking Google Slides
Why Teach Tech Standards
Finding Your Spark
3 Ways to Tell a Story
Your Story Ideas
Better Power Point
How to Make a Podcast
Education: Team Sport
Finding Your Spark
William Butler Yeats said, “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” A good teacher can be the spark that lights a fire in their students. Learn how find that spark and fan it into a fire that can spread to your students and your fellow teachers.
Something (a tool, a website, a project, an activity, a technology) that makes you say, “That is SO cool!”
Something that makes you WANT to spend an entire weekend “playing” just to figure it out.
Something that is FUN. If teaching isn’t fun, you’re not doing it right.
Spark leads to...
The spark from a teacher can light a fire in students.
Start With Your Content
You know that you are expected to teach the content covered in chapter 14. Find a tool/activity/project that best fits in with your passion. Something that makes you “spark”. If using that cool tool/activity/project helps light a fire in your students more than Chapter 14, dump chapter 14 and USE IT!
The Pony Express
you know what you are expected to teach
you have a tool, web site, activity, project, simulation that teaches it better than the book
FUEL & OXYGEN = TRAINING & TIME
Turn the spark into a flame.
Once you have a spark, that spark will die out unless you have fuel and oxygen.
FUEL = Training
OXYGEN - Time
Where do you go for training?
Your school Tech Coord.
Online - virtual conferences, YouTube
Training Needs to Be...
and develop competencies in what you've already been trained on.
KINDLING = SUPPORT
Turn the flame into a fire.
Support - so you know they're not left hanging out to dry if something goes wrong.
Where do you go?
Find that little icon or menu item that says “Help”
Build up that relationship with your tech coordinator and your school IT.
Always be nice to your school Maintenance and IT Department.
- Your subject matter experts don't have to be on your campus. The gift of web access means teachers can reach outside of their classroom and campus to other cities, states, and even countries for help.
Go to professional development workshops & conferences. Make connections with other educators that share your passions and use the same tools as you.
Get contact information: Twitter, Facebook, Google+, email
Ask them, “Hey, would it be okay to contact you if I have a question?”
FUEL THE FIRE - Keep it going. Let it spread.
- Let fellow teachers see what you are doing. Share with administrators and parents too. Rushton Hurley (nextvista.org) shares that many teachers are doing great things but no one knows about it.
What's Obvious to You is Amazing to Others
Share at your school: How awesome would it be if you could take 3-5 minutes out of each staff meeting and use it as "show & tell" time for teachers to share great technology integrating projects. Imagine the enthusiasm this could generate among others.
Team Teaching - In some cases you can step in to team teach with other. They present the content and their requirements, You can help them with specifics of the tool.
Tutorial Videos - If you can't be there in person, make tutorial videos for the teacher to play for the class (and themselves) to help them learn. Camtasia and Jing are great tools for screen captures.
Follow-Up Support - Meet with them after the lesson. Discuss how it went. What worked? What didn't? How can it be improved? You can be their kindling, spreading the fire to others.
Share online : Jen Wagner’s words of advice, “Don’t just be a sponge, also be a watering can.” Share what you do online and make it available for others. Use a blog, a wiki, Google Docs. Your experiences can inspire others. Let the light from your fire shine brightly.
- Be a SME ("Subject Matter Expert")
Lemonade Stand (
Oregon Trail (
Number Munchers (
Remember this sound?
People can be awesome sparks.
My first amazing DEN Experience
. Other DEN Experiences: Washington DC,
The "Original" Rock Dating Game
Leave it To Wheezer
This is a whole workshop in itself. Let kids take charge of their learning by making them the storyteller. Some of my favorite web tools.
*Also available in an iPad app
audio is a great way to share stories.)
- Easy to use. Here's how to make
with just your voice and a single photo.
Make your notes searchable using
Google Forms -
Over 75 ways to use Google Forms in the Classroom!
Google Docs - It's replacing MS Office for our students.
Make your own QR Codes:
Beautiful QR Codes
(Sign in, shorten you link, then click DETAILS)
help on how to format text
Turn off "Getting Started"