Monthly Archives: October 2012

What if Limited Budgets Didn’t Limit Learning?


PBS Learning Media is an excellent free resource for digital content that is aligned to the curriculum across all content areas.

You will have to sign up for an account, but access is immediate.   The user interface is super easy to search and use, and the main search page allows for filter by grade level, subject, media, and source type.

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Posted by on October 25, 2012 in Resources


Books That Support Common Core Standards

Recently I asked the faculty and staff at my school for suggestions of books to add to our collection.  Here are some resources I provided them with.

CCBC Booklists
CCS Resources by Booklist
Common Core Suggested Books on Pinterest

Engaging Non-Fiction: The (NY) Times, The Common Core, and a Question for you
Great Science Books for HS Students by Carl Zimmer
Junior Library Guild High Interest Sports
Non-Fiction for Reluctant Readers
Uncovering Complex Text in the Common Core by Edutopia

Zinn Education Project

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Posted by on October 17, 2012 in Resources


ICE, it’s Not Just for Media Specialists

ICE events are not just for media specialists.   If you enjoyed our last Institute On October 5th, you will really enjoy going to an ICE Chapter Mini-Conference, each of which are packed with ready-to-implement tips on integrating technology on all levels.

Upcoming Events include:

October 20 – SPICE

October 22 – NICE

October 25 – MICE

October 25 – ICE-SI

October 27 – ICE CHIP

November 17 – ICE CAP

January 26 – NICE

January 26 – RICE

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Posted by on October 12, 2012 in Professional Development


Resource Directory

It is my goal to keep an eye out for information, resources, and strategies that teachers students might find informative or useful; and, I’m continually working to compile this information in varied ways to tailor and improve the delivery of resources to meet your needs.   I’m currently working on some new exciting initiatives for sharing information, including “Tech Tip Sheets” and “Tech Tip Clips.”  More information to come on both of these.

As always, please contact me if you need more specialized resources.   Also, If you’d like more information on how to use wikis, social bookmarking, Twitter or Blogs in your practice, or if you already use them, but would like some additional tips on using advanced features, please let me know. I would be thrilled to work with you in whatever way is helpful to you! 

Just so you have all this information in one place, I’ve listed some of the resources I’ve compiled below and on my blog.


I think you will be very pleased with the breadth and depth of information provided by Gale, a company that holds the status of an award winning publisher of reference resources.  Links to our new Gale databases are now available on the media center webpage.    Please see me for the passwords.

See >


I also wanted to give a shout out to some other resources I publish that you might of value.

My Wiki > [my attempt to compile valuable resources by content or subject]

My Diigo > [a social bookmarking site I’ve utilized over the past six years]

My Twitter > [which, which I utilize to publish research in the field of education]

My Blog > [New!]

My Curated Topics on Scoop > [Interesting things I’ve found Serendipitously]


I’m also available to work with you to develop specialty “guided research tools.”   These require a bit more planning, but if you have a project that requires students have access to very high level resources to collect data or to use as reference, I would be happy to work with you to develop these tools.  I’ve included a few examples below,

See  > Renewable Energy Pathfinder

See also > Cancer Pathfinder


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Posted by on October 12, 2012 in Resources


A Few Great PBL Resources for The Novice and The Expert

Lately, there’s been a lot of exciting talk about problem based learning (PBL).  Yet, as exciting as it’s been to talk about, I agree with those who believe that PBL is (albeit, by design) highly subjective and hard to grasp.   I’ve been doing a lot of research on my own, and I’ve found the following resources to be some of the best:

The West Virginia Department of Education has published a set of PBL resources that can be used when planning PBL lessons/units.  I’ve found the rubrics especially helpful in providing a concise look at the skill sets required of PBL lessons/units.

I was very excited to find the University of Delaware Problem-Based Learning Clearinghouse.  This project, funded by the Pew Charitable Trust has compiled a large database of articles, lesson plans, and resources that can be searched by discipline.  I realize these are college level projects, but the beauty of all PBL projects is that they are easily modified and fit perfectly in mixed ability and grade level classrooms.

You will have to sign up for a password to access these resources.  It took about one week for my application to be approved, but it was well worth it.  Here are several sample lesson plans:

A Bad Day for Sandy Dayton
Barbara Duch, Physics

Responding to Economic Crisis in Africa
Gretchen Bauer,  Interdisciplinary Science

If you want to browse the database before signing up, let me know and I’ll work with you to set up a demo.

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Posted by on October 6, 2012 in Resources