viernes, 24 de mayo de 2013

Challenge 20/20

Challenge 20/20

"Challenge 20/20 is an Internet-based program that pairs classes at any grade level (K-12) from schools in the U.S. with their counterpart classes in schools in other countries; together, the teams (of two or three schools) find local solutions to one of 20 global problems."

This is all about Flattening Classroom, a way to work collaboratively with someone in a different part in the world, but with the same interests, so we can share ideas, interests, lessons. We have been learning about Flattening classrooms and lowering our walls and Challenge 20/20 is the way to make it possible, by subscribing to this Association a teacher can be connected with the word and so their students.

What is great about this Internet Based Program is that it is based on 20 global problem, such a deforestation, water scarcity,natural disaster prevention, illegal drugs and other topic that are not exclusive to a City neither to a Country. Those problems are global problem, they transcend frontiers and would be great to work collaboratively across our borders. 

This channel is a great tool for teachers who are willing to lower their walls as they are offering this world wide spread problems that can be  addressed by any teacher at any Country. The topic I am more interested in, is the "water deficit" as I teach Environmental Laws in our Country and how they have helped or interrupted the manage of our natural resources. Wouldn´t it be great to know how other Countries manage their resources and if they have similar laws than us?

I would love to share statistics about water in Mexico City, like the amount of water used per person a year, the cost of it, how may people have access to it, from where the water comes, if water is polluted or not... By sharing those "numbers", students can compare and contrast the same problem in their own cities and come with collaborative solutions.

By the beginning of the next scholl year I will sign up to to this program once I know the scheduling of my topics and I will be delighted to work with a teacher from abroad.

Assignment 8

One Lap Top for Child

One Lap Top For Child

Image created using pixl

Creating a image to promote a product:  

Why did you decide to use these photos or clips?

Talking with my group, and after brainstorming several ideas such as promoting a hand cream or a board game, we decide to create something related to what we are learning: flattening classrooms. An important part of it is having education for everyone. This can be done having technology or open content for all schools, so this picture talks about both aspects: bringing technology to a rural place and having access to good content. 

Who is your target audience?

People interested in education. The idea would be to publish this image in college or Highschool magazines so people would be interested in donating to this purpose.

What is your ad's message?

To engage people and promote them to donate for buying computer to rural places.

How do your visuals enhance the message's impact?

Having a rural school with computers on it I guess cause an impact as it is not common to see those pictures, so creating this pictures for sure will enhance the message to donate to the less fortunate.

Assignment 7

jueves, 9 de mayo de 2013

Creative abilities and rewards

The Puzzle of Motivation

“Autonomy, mastery, purpose, this are the building blocks of the way of doing things”. This is the most important part of Dan Pink’s Ted Talk on The Puzzle of Motivation. The whole presentation is about how rewards have not worked in the real word as they have killed creativity.
         The presenter remarks and gives several examples of companies that have been successful even when they do not offer rewards to they workers, but instead, they allow them to have autonomy and precisely in moments of “freedom”, big ideas have arise.
         Thinking about education, I can clearly translate these rewards mentioned by Dan Pink into the grades offered by teachers as a reward when students achieve certain goal.  (Or even when points are taken away when they do not achieve some goals).
         Teachers must work in focusing more in students achieving a goal and learning, rather than focusing on a grade, that might narrow their creativity indeed!  Grades do exist, and we need to constantly evaluate, but grading must be a constant process or thermometer thought-out a project but not a goal.
         We must engage them in well-developed projects that include clear instructions and most important, with a clear purpose. As we have been studying recently (PBL), it is very important for students to succeed in connecting their learning to real life.
         An important goal, as teachers, should be to promote creative abilities in our students though projects that really engage them, where that can make meaningful connections to their realities; that should be the reward, to the grade itself.
Image created using

Here is an interesting article that expands the discussion about creativity and traditional education.

viernes, 3 de mayo de 2013

Project Based Learning vs. Just Doing Projects

Project Based Learning vs. Just doing Projects

In the tutorial What is PBL? by New Tech Network, the differences between Project Based Learning (PBL) and just doing Projects are clearly explained. PBL is a way to integrate projects into the learning process and not to leave them as a separate part at the end of a Unit.  PBL make students be the owners of their own learning process with the guide and support of their teacher, it focuses in content but also in skills. While doing PBLs students are engaged in their own learning, they have a clear rubric, clear boundaries, and are exposed to resources so they can wisely choose what they need in order to achieve their goal. PBL is a more holistic way of teaching and learning focused in the integration of projects into students reality. It is opposed to the traditional “just doing projects”, where students may not find a connections with their own lives, they do not internalize it, in PBL they do!       
A good example of a school that successfully works with PBL, is shown in this video.                               PA2b                                                               

miércoles, 24 de abril de 2013

An Introduction to Project Based Learning

 I knew from a previous masters class that a Project Based Learning (PBL) is a way of teaching where students learn from “authentic” activities, meaning real word activities that they can export to their day-to-day reality. The video gave a very clear example of a PBL and many important steps of PBL were shown, such as: -teacher gave very clear indications and expectations to students before they started working, -it is hands on and student directed, -students learned through out the process, -they work in teams and they learn from their own experiences and –they need to share their knowledge and have a real audience. Every school year I try to include more and more PBL into my classroom. At the beginning I though it was more related to science, arts, math, and not for Social Studies, but I have done a couple of PBL this year (The Aztecs Peregrination” and the “Prehispanic Sites”) and I hink they were successful and the most enriching part was to see how motivated the students get and how they “appropriate” it. Also doing a PBL I learned that the whole unit it taught with a PBL and not and isolated project at the end of the unit. I know about some other PBL experiences at the MS like the volume project in science for the eight graders and the Chocolate exhibition for SSL students.

sábado, 6 de octubre de 2012



Creating a Infographic

Creating an infographic was difficult and time consuming, but... worthy! This time it was an experiment and it took a while for us to manage new tools. If we work as a team I am confident that we can create an archive full of awesome material including visuals, videos, graphs, and sure, infographs that can serve for our students. As a teacher I am always looking for new materials to share with my students, challenging readings, photos, videos... it would be great that part of that material can be created by me and by my colleagues  but again, working alone is hard, it is difficult to find the time to do so but working collaboratively as we did this time we can have rich and value PLNs!

Information taken from: