Blending Your Classroom

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Technology Resources

About: BlendSpace.com is an educational online resource that allows educators to use digital content in their classroom. The information is presented as a lesson in title format. Each uploaded piece of information is a separate tile. The tile groupings, or arrangement, are defined as the lesson. For example, teachers can upload pictures, website links, documents, quizzes, videos, etc. and each upload is a tile students can click.

Alternatively, students can view the whole lesson [title by tile completely featured on the whole computer screen] by clicking a play feature. The website is called BlendSpace, because educators can blend varying digital resources in one manageable space. Educators can arrange titles by skill level, information levels, or formative assessment levels.

The website has several different search functions, so you can pull information from varying locations to add instantly to your lesson page. Teachers can add classes and attach specific lessons to designated classes. As an online resource, students can access at home, in the school computer lab, or in the classroom using handheld electronic devices.

Getting Started video. Great introductory source for the website.

My Classroom Use: I am using BlendSpace for an interdisciplinary unit. The unit objective is for students to analyze a literary historical document versus an informational text to notice use of conflicting information. I personalized the lesson through an advanced choice board.

  • I selected materials that offer varying levels of rigor. The first title on the lesson is a historical literary text, that each student must read. For my Advanced Learners each row is a different type of informational text they must analyze to use in their choice board assignments.
  • 21st Century global connection. My Advanced Learners lesson topic is Internment Camps, so I uploaded interviews from varying global perspectives. 21st century skills ask students to become investigators for their academic growth. Teachers can create as many tiles to support the lesson and ask students to choose which titles to select for materials and then teachers can ask students to find materials or sources to complement the BlendSpace lesson as an assessment tool.
  • I plan to share my lessons during ELA Grade Level PLC meetings. (Lessons are private unless you send an electronic invite providing a link.)

Replacement Ideas

In the past teachers may have been limited to the amount of materials they would use in class or consider the amount of copies to make for varying materials, using BlendSpace could eliminate this.

1-    Organize: Teachers can upload as many links as possible to the site and if students are able to make selections based on teacher guidance, there are more opportunities for student growth. Students can make the choice to watch videos or not, decide on what type of informational or literary texts to review, all which benefit their learning style and interests.

2-    Assess: This is use of selection and choice can persist with assessments. Students can take mini-quizzes, title offer a quiz builder option, or teacher can upload previously created quizzes.

3-    Track: But this should open up the class time, where the student is shaping their class day. They are selecting their learning materials and they are able to take their assessments when ready. You are able to track students’ success and choices instantly.

Flipping the Classroom using BlendSpace. Wonderful for more advanced technologically prone educators.

 

Best Practices

According to BlendSpace mission statement the website aims to help teachers seamlessly blend their current classroom with digital resources. Best Practices can be summarized as teachers presenting multiple materials and resources, student engagement, teachers providing a collaborative student-centered environment, activity based atmosphere and joyful purpose of movement (“Best Practices: A Resource for Teachers”). Therefore, BlendSpace is execution of Best Practices. The website offers a personalized and relevant learning experience for each student in class and it’s a great organizing site that educators can use to supplement their lectures. Educators with any stage of technological comfort can use this website.

Visit Educational Technology bloggers perspective on BlendSpace.

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