#31 How to Amplify Your Students’ Voices — Katelynn Giordano (如何幫助學生找回學習自主權)

In this episode, it is all about amplifying your students’ voices.  We are really happy to have Katelynn Giordano joining us and sharing her teaching strategies of years. 

Katelynn Giordano is a Middle Level Language Arts Educator,  a blogger at Curriculum Coffee, a writer for the Teachers on Fire magazine, and a Director of Curriculum & Instruction for the Teach Better Team
She is a dynamic educator who is passionate about student voices, promoting equity, and valuing teachers as professionals.

Connect with Katelynn:
Website | Twitter | Instagram 


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Show Notes with Selected Links

  • [01:30]  Not only Katelynn is a 6th grade teacher but also an instructor in Northwestern University Center for Talent Development and working for the Teach Better Team.  Except for being a 6th grade teacher, how did Katelynn decide if she wanted to take on these roles and thus actualize her beliefs in education ?
  • [03:26] What did Katelynn want to do for a bigger reach in Education at the beginning?
  • [05:05] The reason why Katelynn is passionate about advocating amplifying students’ voices.
  • [07:14] From Katelynn’s personal take, what does it mean by giving your students’ voices.
  • [09:30] How do students behave differently before and after having their own voices out?
  • [12:30] Tips to give students more voices or choices in writing classes.
  • [14:46] How did Katelynn help students to find their own passion for projects?
  • [16:54] How long to do “soul searching”?
  • [17:30] Tools Katelynn used for students’ feedback.
  • [22:38] How did Katelynn know that she addressed the feedback on point?
  • [24:08] When and how did the students do the feedback form?
  • [25:33] Books that influenced the core values or thinking of Katelynn.
  • [28:46] If Katelynn has a superwoman power, what does she want to change the education system of the US?
  • [30:04] Parting thoughts.


Please go here


  • Can your curriculum help your students to see who they are ? Or is the curriculum written by the people from the homogenous or diverse background?

What can you do tomorrow

  • Start from one writing assignment. Let your students write about their passion projects and see how that trigger their intrinsic motivations.

Song Tracks Credits

#30 融入跨領域與資訊科技的教學設計 — 黃加明老師




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本集大綱 Show Notes

回顧我們的教學 Reflections

  • 您覺得學生只需具備學科內的能力,就足以面對新世代的挑戰嗎?
  • 您是否融合學科外的能力,例如:說故事或是簡報技巧,於自己的課室中呢?

改變的一小步 What can you do tomorrow

  • 若想要培養學生的表達力,不妨給予自由,讓學生選擇有熱情的主題發揮,這不僅激勵更深層的學習,也往往讓師長有意外的收穫,促使教與學的相互成長。

音樂來源 Song Track Credits

#29 Bringing Socratic Seminars Into Your Teaching with Kerry Graham (如何融合蘇格拉底式討論於教學中)

“I just want them to grow in their confidence and I want them to know that being uncomfortable doesn’t mean something impossible. I want them to know the power of their voices and how special their thoughts are. I want them to be good listeners and compassionate with their spoken words” — Kerry Graham

In this episode, it is all about Socratic Seminars. Socratic Seminars is a teaching strategy to guide student-led discussion. This time, we are excited to have Kerry Graham joining us and sharing her experience in this strategy. 

Kerry is not only a teacher but also a writer.  She lives and kayaks in Baltimore, MD, USA, after graduating from Johns Hopkins University School of Education,.  Kerry prioritizes laughter, compassion, and self-expression in her English classroom. She’s grateful for and humbled by her ten years as a public school teacher. 

Connect with Kerry:
Twitter | Facebook


Acast | Apple Podcast Google Podcast | Spotify | Stitcher | Youtube

Show Notes with Selected Links

  • [01:46] As a writer, the core message or feelings Kerry wants to deliver through her stories.  
  • [03:54] For Kerry, personally, how does she express her love to her students and let them know that she care about them? 
  • [05:35] In the high school Kerry is teaching is very diverse. 50% percent from Baltimore while the other 50 from the globe. Other than Baltimore, what are the countries the students came from?   Do most schools in Baltimore have diverse population? 
  • [07:56] How did Kerry change her teaching approaches for diverse students?
  • [10:18] What is Socratic Seminar?
  • [11:21] Step by step how Kerry used  Socratic Seminar in her own classroom. 
  • [15:50] How does Kerry assign students into groups?
  • [16:40] The seating setup in Socratic Seminar.
  • [18:40] Outer circle student’s tasks when observing inner circle discussion.
  • [19:35] Example of the Socratic Seminar topics and the questions students came up with.
  • [21:13] Is there any boundary for students when crafting their questions?
  • [22:32] How many minutes does each group have for discussion? And how many students are there in a group?
  • [24:43] The ways to help students stay on the track without diverging too much.
  • [26:33] How does Kerry give feedback to her students in Socratic Seminar?
  • [32:06] Kerry’s personal goals for students to learn in Socratic Seminar.
  • [34:01] The most common mistake teacher made in Socratic Seminar and approaches to prevent it from happening.
  • [37:00] 1 to 2 books that influence Kerry ‘s core values or thinking.
  • [39:00] If Kerry has one superwoman power to change the education system in the US, what would it be?
  • [41:26] Parting thoughts


Please go here


  • What is your teaching goals personally for any student led discussion in your class?

What can you do tomorrow

  • When there is a topic you want your students to discuss in class, try to ask them coming up their own questions before the class. In class discussion, give your students a safe space to speak without intervening too much.

Song Tracks Credits

交替學習(Interleaving) VS 聯鎖學習(blocking)


  • 交替學習:學習者在不同相似觀念間交替練習,例如:
    • 在一小時的鋼琴練習中,交替練習和旋,琶音和音階.每個主題練習十分鐘。
  • 連鎖學習:學習者持續練習單一主題,直到熟稔後,才接續下一主題.例如:
    • 每日持續練習音階,等到一個禮拜後,已可順暢彈出音階才開始琶音練習。


Rohrer and Taylor (2007) 的實驗中,他們請一群大學生來學習不同幾何形狀的體積運算,總共有兩次學習課堂,課堂間有一個禮拜的間隔。課堂中,學生會練習四個不同幾何形狀的體積運算,每個主題都有四個問題,學生分兩組,一組使用交替學習,一組使用連鎖學習。在課堂中,連鎖學習組的學生表現勝於交替學習組,但是,在課堂結束後一個禮拜的測驗中,交替學習者的成果卻遠勝於連鎖學習組.以下表格顯示其不同方式的答題準確率:

交替學習60 %63 %
連鎖學習89 %20 %
來源:Rohrer, D., & Taylor, K. (2007). The shuffling of mathematics problems improves learning. Instructional
Science, 35, 481–498.

Rohrer and Taylor 也更進一步指出,交替學習組不僅準確率較高,也能區別用哪個方程式去解決不同問題,然而,連鎖學習組則常套用不正確的方程式。




Transcript #28 Infusing Social Emotional Learning in Classroom – Wendy Turner (如何融合情緒管理學習於課室中)

Ti-Fen  (0s): Hi, everyone. Welcome to Compass. Teachers show I’m your host Ti-Fen. My job is to interview Teachers around the globe and teach out their teaching tactics, education, research, or tools they use. Hopefully this show can offer ideas for you to  experiments in your classrooms.

In this episode, we are going to dig, dive into how to infuse social, emotional learning into your own classroom. Today, we are really honored to have Wendy Turner joining us. Wendy is a second grade teacher in 2017 or 18 Delaware Teacher of the Year. She teaches at Pleasant Elementary.  a large suburban school in Delaware with over 750 students and a diverse population Wendy is interested in trauma informed practices, global education, social, emotional learning, and empathy in education. 

And she loved every moment spans with her seven or eight years old. And without further ado, let’s  enjoy our conversation with Wendy. Welcome to the show. Wendy 

Wendy (1m 27s): Hi, I’m so happy to be here. Thank you so much for inviting me to join your show. I’m I’m thrilled. 

Ti-Fen  (1m 33s): So, first of all, I know that you have a really different trajectory into teaching after 17 years in the business world and you decided you become a teacher, a curse. What is the story or motivation that drove you to make these big transitions? 

Wendy (1m 53s): Oh, it’s such a great question. Thanks for asking that. Yes, I a was a business major in college. I worked for 17 years in finance and accounting, and we had a daughter in 2005. And when my daughter was about six months old, I remember the So clearly I was sitting in my cubicle at the big company I worked for here in Wilmington. I just sat there and I thought to myself, I can’t do this for 20 more years. I had really enjoyed spending time with my daughter. I had some nieces at this point and I felt like I could relate really well to children. 

So I called my husband and I said, hi, do you mind if I go to school at night to become a teacher? And he was like, sure, he didn’t drop the phone or hang up on me, which is good news. And I, I began to go to school at night and it took me about three years of working full time, going to school at night, taking care of our daughter. And I had our son another baby during the same time. So it was exciting, challenging, but wonderful. And it was absolutely the right choice for me. 

I, it, to start working in a profession where I could have more human impact, I could make a difference. And I always tell people that my very worst day in teaching is far better than my best day in my old job. 

Ti-Fen  (3m 15s): Wow. So do you find your previous business experience add on a different color into your teaching in an unexpected ways, or like how does the shape you differently in teaching compared to other educators? 

Wendy (3m 31s): So that’s a great question. And it has been an enormous advantage in my opinion, to have all those years in the business world, in my experience. So during that time I worked for many large companies, I worked for Disney, I worked for Pricewaterhouse. I worked for a fragrance company in New York city. And when I worked for Disney, I traveled around the world and that added to my personal experience helped me broaden my horizons and come in contact with all the different people. And I even worked in environments that were terrible. I worked in environments where people screamed and yelled at, try to make people cry, literally and navigating those types of environments and coming out of them stronger, learning how to be resilient and ultimately saying no to those types of environments gave me confidence. 

And I truly feel like becoming a teacher at eight 40. I was more prepared to work with different kinds of people in my students and my families that I support and just people in the district, because of all those years of experience, I don’t think I would of been anywhere near as effective if I have become a teacher right out of college at age 22. 

Ti-Fen  (4m 33s): So we know like you put lots of work into social, emotional learning, what inspired you to poop so much ever to emphasize these areas? 

Wendy (4m 47s): Mmm, that’s a great question. So this area isn’t even talked about very often and teacher preparation programs, it’s, it’s something you have to kind of figure out. And when I wrote, I have to write my teaching philosophy when I was a teaching students and I wrote a long time ago. It’s probably, you know, 15 years ago now that I wanted to teach my students how to be successful human beings. And that was just something I felt inside me. And so I had a little bit of an instinct to do this, and then really what crystallize this for me was something that happened in my first year of teaching. 

I started my job teaching second grade and on about the seventh day of class, the second week of class, one of the students in my class lost their mom to cancer. So it was very worrisome for me because here I was a new teacher and I have to figure out how to support my students, how to support the other students in second grade I’m at this time, because they were starting to experience fears around losing a parent and then how to like he’ll and come together as a community, a Classroom communities through this very difficult time. 

And, and I really remember her being at home crying, literally because they didn’t know what to do, but I just asked for help. I started talking to our principal and our counselor about what I can do. And I knew very, very clearly that we couldn’t just come back into school and like open up the math book and start teaching would be like open up to page 20. We were going to start a lesson. We had to talk about what happened. We had to share our feelings. We had to share a messy, uncomfortable feelings and work our way through them. We couldn’t pretend it hadn’t happened. 

We had to embrace what, what hap what did happen. And we work our way through it. And ultimately we ended up doing a really big charity project where we were able to make a large donation to a charitable foundation at the end of the year, kind of like as a way to conclude this experience together. So that told me right then and there, if we don’t do social, emotional learning, we’re not even going to get to the academic stuff. 

Ti-Fen  (6m 43s): Yeah. That’s really wonderful. So I think it’s a good way. We can talk more about the way we can Infuse Social Emotional, Learning in Classroom. So from my research, I know  you believe the best way to do that is to be a model for our students by identifying what we need to work on and engaging that work right before our students’ eyes. So I’m curious if there’s any story behind or your observation from the students or progression that it comes to these realizations. 

Wendy (7m 20s): Sure. I’m you know, what can I define social, emotional learning for you first? Cause I think that will be helpful. Yeah. Okay. All right. Great. So social, emotional learning is to me, it’s everything, it’s the foundation of everything that we do in education. And if we don’t do it, we’re, we’re not going to be successful. So a lot of people know that social, emotional learning is very important now with the trauma that everyone is enduring with, COVID-19 in schools being closed and open. And, but I think that a lot of people, if you ask them what it is, they are just not sure they’re like, was it mindfulness or gratitude or it’s something about getting along with people? 

I don’t know. So I like to really use a framework for social, emotional learning. There is a very popular one out there. And I explain that to my students and that helps us all stay grounded in what we’re doing. So CASEL is the collaborative for academic and social, emotional learning. They are the, you know, the leader and thought around social, emotional learning and providing resources and space around social, emotional learning. And they have a model and is known as the Capitol five and it’s five competencies. 

And if you go to their website, you will find this graphic, it’s a wheel and it’s got five parts to it. And the different competencies that are social, emotional learning are five things that are self-awareness self-management social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making. So as you work to bring these things to your students, you have to define the things for your students. And then you have to give them ways to develop strength and skill in them. And I think if we, as adults do that side by side with our, we are, you know, walking the walk and talking the talk that we say we’re going to do, and we’re modeling it for them in real time. 

And there’s a struggle. Some people find, they say like, why can’t I can’t fit social, emotional learning. And I have to cover all this content, or, you know, I have a math teacher, I don’t do this, this isn’t my job. But what we need to do ultimately is yes, define these things. And yes, talk about some vocabulary that kids need to understand like emotions or, you know, what’s a relationship with empathy. And then we have to understand what it is to infuse them into our academic activities and it’s absolutely possible to do so. I think that there’s a great case study out there. 

And it was put up by San Jose state and it talked about how to prepare teachers to do this. And that piece really speaks to my heart about social, emotional learning. But the piece talks about in order to prepare teachers to do this, number one, you have to have them work on their own adult. SEL so work on their social, emotional competence in terms of developing self-awareness self-management social awareness, relationship skills and decision-making skills. And then you have to teach them how to integrate it 

Ti-Fen  (10m 7s): how you engage your personnel work in progress SEL while teaching them social, emotional learning and their needs. 

Wendy (10m 32s): Sure. So a great one right now, one, this is really important is around self management and self awareness. And that is really the process of identifying our emotions. And right now we’re all going through many, many emotions because the world is going through many, many challenges right now. And I feel like the world is in survival mode. And as a result, lots of human beings are to So something that I can do is I can ask the kids to do an emotion. Check-in I can say, how are you feeling today? Are you feeling good, a ready to learn? 

Or do you feel a little uneasy or worried about something or are you mad or scared or angry? And I can also share my emotional state to write. So when I do that, then I can kind of quickly assess who might have trouble Today Learning who might need a little bit more compassion or support. And when we, before school closed, I used this rubber bracelet system. Every day, the kids would come in and put on a bracelet, red, green, or yellow on their wrist quietly, and to show me and their classmates how they were feeling. And we talked about the fact that if a student was wearing a yellow or a red bracelet, we might need to support them better. 

And what would it look like to support them? And I would also wear a bracelet too. So there might be mornings, you know, a lot of times they come in on green. I’m really excited to see my students, but Hey, I am a human being too. And if I’ve gotten into a fight with one of my kids on the way to school or something like that, I might come in and put on a yellow bracelet. So I’m modeling my honesty was sharing my emotions and I’m fostering a safe environment where students can share their emotions. You know, if you come in every day and put it on the red bracelet, you’re never in trouble. Thank you. In fact, for doing that and how can I help you? 

How can I help you get to a place of learning? And so that’s something that can be integrated into the fabric of your classroom. I am a remote or hybrid. I’ve been on a year. So the kids figure out a Google form to share this information. So that’s one way. And then once we realized that we do have emotions that we’ll call it uncomfortable, maybe yellow or red, we have to teach resilience strategies. So when you feel uncomfortable and your having a mad, sad, or angry day, what do you do? So we teach children explicit, calming strategies. 

We talk about the power of our breath. It’s always with us. It’s something we can go back to. We talk about finding joy and the good things. Even in the hardest days, one of Castle’s signature plays. They have a signature playbook with three signature SEL moves. One of them is an optimistic closing. So every day we do an activity, that’s an optimistic closing on Monday, it’s called three good things. And I asked the kids to share three good things. And it might have been the worst day or the most challenging day, but we share things like the sun is out. 

Or I snuggled with my dog Today or I have a hot dog for a lunch, or I say, I’ve got to go out and walk around the block. So you just celebrate the good things, even on the hardest day. And that’s something that I do kind of concurrently with my students, because whenever I ask them to share or something like that, I do the same thing. I share my emotion, I share three good things, et cetera. Another one that I really like is reframing negative thoughts. And that also comes into play with self-awareness and self-management human beings are wired to have a negativity bias, which means that they focus on negative thoughts, more than positive thoughts. 

And if you think about a day, maybe you’ve gone through a day and 10 things have happened to you. None of them were good and one was bad. All you remember is that one bad thing and reframing is where you take a situation and you look for the positive in it. It’s not like pretending that everything’s great ’cause we don’t want to do that, but its looking for something good. And an example was, you know, last spring schools and you’re in the U S closed in March and we had to do a lot of reframing. So school closed, we weren’t really good at remote learning yet. 

We were struggling a lot, but we reframed and said things like, well, the school is closed, but I get more time because I don’t have to commute to work right now. Or your school is closed, but I’m learning a lot of new technology. And that’s a good thing for me in my students or school is closed and I get to spend more time with my family. So by teaching explicitly how to reframe negative thoughts and find the good thing in a situation you gift, you’re introducing another resilience strategy. 

Ti-Fen (14m 47s): Yeah. I really loved the reframing one, but I also found that 

Ti-Fen  (14m 52s): The bracelet is really interesting. How many colors  do, can you then choose for a, the bracelets and also ldo they make the bracelets themselves? Or you just like distribute some bracelet to them. 

Wendy (15m 8s): So yeah, they are right now with my bracelet model, I have three colors, green, yellow, and red, and I just buy plastic rubber bracelets that can be reused now with COVID. I may start using ones with the kids who were in person in my classroom. We’ll have some hybrid learners and I’ll just give them like a little plastic bag that has three bracelets in it that they can choose from that are always there. And we named on the first day of school, actually I put up a chart and we name emotions and we sort them into green emotions, yellow emotions and red emotions. So they have some language around what’s What I think you could add other colors for even young kids, but certainly for older people I’ve, I’ve had blue be represented as sad. 

I’ve seen orange represented for exciting I’m or pink could be an exciting and purple could be kind of calm. So you can really add whatever you want. I do just focus on the three right now, but you could, we can really be great if you can have the kids to design a system. So if you’re going to have bracelets and you want it to have colors represent emotions, what would you want each of them to be in? That can be so powerful because they can have a part in it. And I have to say, I wish that sometimes adults had such a system because how amazing would it be to walk into your workplace and just know who’s struggling a little bit of who might need some help or a check-in. 

Ti-Fen  (16m 22s): Yeah, that’s true. And you don’t need to struggle to read their minds so you can just, See how they are feeling. So there is the one thing that you just mentioned. I also really want to ask is the emotion though checks in Jamboard that would you mind sharing with us how you do this activity in your classroom? 

Wendy (16m 44s): Yeah. And I’m happy to share some templates with you too. So I’ve noticed over time that Monday is really a hard day for my students. So even when we were in school, when school is open kids coming in on Monday and they’re very tired because they usually stay up later than normal and Friday and Saturday night and then sleep in later. And they may spend a lot of times playing video games, especially in the cold weather, you know, and that can just make you feel tired and sluggish, that kind of thing. So I tried something two Mondays ago that I just loved and it was a huge success. 

I’m going to keep doing it. I created a jam board. So we use Google jam board. And on that jam board, the, it just says, please share an emotion that you’re feeling right now. And the students, if your familiar with Jim, where they can actually click on a sticky note and they just type something on it. So whether your students are at home or in the classroom, everyone can engage and collaborate on that at once, which is I think a very powerful too, when we’re all split up and separate from each other. So I did it two Mondays ago and kids were writing things like tired. I have a headache I’m okay. 

I’m excited. I’m pretty good. But it was more unpleasant emotions than Pleasant emotions I noticed. And one had written that they felt calm. Now, after that, I asked the kids to just take a look at the screen I was sharing and I was said, I was going to show them some pictures. And I went on to show them 18, really beautiful pictures of winter scenes in Sweden. And I think I found them in the New York times and I’d put them on the jam board and I just went through them. And I think I quietly count to five for each picture was like a five count. 

So they can look at each picture for a five count and went through and they were just beautiful in Northern lights were a Borealis campfires. There was a dog flood picture, a wild reindeer. They were, you know, from trees. Icicles is just absolutely beautiful. And then on the 20th side of the jam board, I said, okay, please check in again, write in a motion. Well, they checked in again and 10, not one, but 10 students wrote down that they were feeling calm. Several students wrote down that they were feeling better and more students said they were excited. 

So I had seen the incidents of a student, a sharing, a common motion rise tenfold just from showing a series of pictures of winter scenes. And that just really blew me away because data is data, data doesn’t lie, and data can inform what you’re doing. So that told me that if I could show my pictures that created a positive, happy chemicals and the brain every Monday morning, that was going to allow us to go into our lesson in a better place mentally. And I did it again this week, except instead of winter scenes, I use pictures of cute baby animals. 

And basically I have the same result. So right after this, I hadn’t told the students about the activity. I hadn’t told them they are going to do a second check-in I just said, what do you notice? And they were like, wow, a lot of people feel better. I feel good. That’s nice. And then they came. I said, well, what do you think this means? What, what is this telling us? And they said, if I look at pictures, nice pictures, I’m going to feel better. They basically came up with that understanding themselves. And I said, yes. So if you’re stressed during an academic task or you’re feeling upset, could you go to a window and look at nature in that might make you feel better? 

And they said, absolutely it will. So it was incredible to me to just go through that activity. 

Ti-Fen  (19m 56s): That’s really powerful. Like, Oh, I like the ways that you are not only helping them to identify, identify the emotion, but you also give them the tools that they can flip that emotion to a positive one. So our, then in this an example, is there any other tools that you find useful for useful for students to help them do any like self-management 

Wendy (20m 27s): Yeah. So I want to share, let me share another activity that we do. So something that’s really critical in this environment is creating ways that the students can work together even in the world in separate locations. So we do use zoom for our video conferences and if I was in the classroom, I would have a lot of collaborative groups. A few years ago. I used have long rectangle tables in my classroom. And a few years ago I did a donors choose project to get funding for round tables because I realized that the collaboration communication with my students would be so much more if they were sitting at round tables facing each other. 

Because when you’re sitting at a long rectangle table, the, to people at the end will never speak to each other basically, right, because there’s too much space and it’s not easy, but I instead got all round tables from my classroom so they can look up and be sitting and looking at each other. So in the classroom, I would change seats. Often I would have activities for each table. I’d have people work in pairs. And I had to figure out a way to do that in a virtual environment. So we do use them for video conferences and I create discussions that kids do in break out rooms. And every day I have a topic in a five minute discussion and it might be something silly. 

Like if you could have any food all day for one day, what would you have? If you can travel anywhere, where would you go? What’s something you enjoy doing with your family. They’re all just connection questions that are designed to help us get to know each other and bond and find our commonalities. So in the beginning of the year, they were having a little trouble with a breakout rooms. Like some kids were talking too much. Some kids were not talking enough. Kids said, well, I don’t like to talk. I just want to use the chat. And so we have to kind of talk about what was going on. And some kids were coming back from the breakout rooms and they were like giving the thumbs down side. 

Like the breakout room is terrible. So I said, okay, where are we going to do with this? So I have something called an empathy meter and it’s a visual and picture or a rainbow. And on one side of the rainbow, it’s a beautiful orange color. That’s actually my favorite color. I feel like it’s exudes positivity. There’s this orange color. And there’s these hearts. And it says, I’m using empathy. I’m thinking about others. I’m thinking with others, I’m caring for others. And on the other side of the rainbow arc, its kind of gray and it says, I’m not thinking of others. 

I might be hurting others. Or I’m just thinking of myself in the middle of your kind of neutral. So what I do is once a week, I pull that out on a, again on a jam board and I ask the kids to have a sticky note. So where do you think we are in this empathy meter? How are we being empathetic or are we not being empathetic? And one of the times I did it, there were a lot of sticky notes, just kind of in the middle, like people weren’t putting them over towards the empathetic side of the orange side. And I said, what’s going on with us? And they said, well, it’s really the breakout rooms. Like we’re doing badly. And the breakout rooms and people are getting mad and they’re coming back mad and we need to do better. 

So I just said, how can we do breakout rooms better? And they shared ideas. Like let people be in the chat, create an order for people participating like use alphabetical order or something or someone try and be in charge to make sure everyone gets to talk. They ask me to put in a chat warning, like when there’s one or two minutes left. So they knew they had to wrap it up to get everyone to, to, to chat. And so we did those things and breakout rooms started to get better. And so then usually every Friday ask them to do the Mt check-in and we started to see more people were moving their sticky over to the side of the, a jam where the empathy side was. 

So that’s a way to think really concretely about using empathy in your everyday life. We read lots of stories about empathy. We talk about what empathy looks like, but we, I think when teaching SEL skills, you have to talk about what it looks like when that skill is missing. So in these examples, we learned what it was like when empathy was not present. And I think that’s very powerful for talking about what it looks like, what it is there for them 

Ti-Fen  (24m 11s):  And so I feel like, Oh, these are really, really great tools in our midst. Make sure that they are in our show notes so our listeners can check it out, and experiment in their classrooms. So S E L is a very abstract Learning compared to all their traditional subjects, which is relatively easy to assess progress. 

So for you, how do you know your students are making progress in these competencies? 

Wendy (24m 55s): So I’m like the example I just gave you. I realized that the students we’re making progress with the breakout rooms, which meant that they were more self aware of what they were doing in staying in the breakout rooms. And they were developing relationships with other kids by saying we’re able to do better in the breakout rooms. And so it’s your right. You don’t want to give an assessment about that. You’re never going to give your students a worksheet and ask them how to make responsible decisions you’re actually going to do. Also, I’ve had a, So a little girl came up to me last week and she just almost had tears in her eyes. 

And I said, what’s wrong? And she said, I miss my friend. I miss my friends and I don’t know what I’m going to see you are. And I hate COVID. And I said, okay. So I said, lets try to get something to do. And I said, can you walk down the hall? There’s a long hall. Can you work for the hole and just hold this and squeeze it. And it was actually just a roll of paper towels because I can’t have all the things I used to share a little stuffies or a squishy balls and things like that because of COVID and germs. And she said, okay, I can do that. And so she walked down the hall and came back and when she came back, she was able to get back to her work. So right there that tells me that that student was completely in tune with her negative emotion. 

She knew to ask for something. And when I provided her with a tool or an idea, she embraced it and she did it. And then she came back and said, thank you. I feel better. And I can go finish my math now. So you kind of have to be aware of it in moments. So I feel so proud when I can see it happening in moments last year, another quick story we had our tables were working in groups of four and this one student got very upset and he started to cry and stomp his feet. 

And we have these benches in my classroom. We actually called them like the cool-down bench or the breathing bench. And he was getting upset and stomping his feet, but he stomped his feet right over to the cool-down bench. He knew what to do and where to go. And then two or three other students from his group that he’d been working with, went over to him and said, you’re okay. You’re going to be okay, good job. You know, you’re going to feel better soon. You’re on the breathing bench. And that, that was one of those moments, right? So I observed a child losing control of their emotions or having difficult emotions. I observed them in bracing, a strategy we introduced in the classroom. 

And then I observed other students being empathetic and checking in with that child and complimenting them on doing just that. I was like, mic drop moment. I was like, I love it. It’s happening. They’re doing, and I didn’t tell anyone to do any of these things and it’s it’s happening 

Ti-Fen  (27m 17s): Well. So yeah, I got you. So basically it’s really hard to use data, to know their progress but  we can use our observation from their behaviors to know the, they are improving. 

Wendy (27m 33s): Yeah, you can’t. I would say too, you can do surveys and you could use little formative assessments, like say you are a really teaching kids about the definition of something like empathy or a growth mindset. You can certainly give them like little quizzes to see if they have an understanding of those terms and concepts. I do think you have to spend a couple of weeks teaching some terms to the kids, some actual content. So they’re familiar with a language and they can use it. 

Ti-Fen  (27m 57s): Last question  we know that there were lots of things happening in the States from black lives matter to today’s Capitol riots for the Capitol riot. Do you have any conversation with your students? And it’s a such a hard topic. 

Wendy (28m 20s): Yes. Thank you. So I teach seven and eight year olds and this is a tender age, right? So on Wednesday evening, as I was watching the Capitol riots, all I can think about was what am I going to do tomorrow? So I determined that I would create space for whoever needed it, because I knew that at this age, some kids wouldn’t know what happened. They wouldn’t of been watching the news. Their parents may have chosen to not show them the news or tell him about it, to keep them insulated from it. And that is reasonable for a young child. 

So what I did the next day is I started our day as we always do. We have a morning meeting. I said, we’re going to do a morning meeting exactly the same as we do every day. And then I said, I’m going to talk about something that happened yesterday. That was kind of hard. And I told them factually what happened? And then I have the kids do a, check-in a again on a jam board. Do you want to have a class conversation about this? Or do you want to go work independently? Like you don’t need to have a conversation. And so the kids move their sticky notes and it turned out that five students want it to have a conversation. So I placed every one in individual break out rooms who wasn’t going to be part of it because that’s fair. 

And that’s their choice. They worked on some independent tasks. And then with those five students, I said, you know, again, factually here’s what happened? Do you have any questions? What are you thinking? And one student shared that he had watched the news with his family, his father talked to them about it, that kind of thing, or another girl was scared that shared that she was experiencing worry and anxiety watching the news. You know, it’s upsetting to see people fighting to see, seen, hear about violence, those kinds of things. And one girl just said, well, what happened? Can you tell me more about what happened? 

I think I know what happens. She had older brothers and she just wanted to know a little bit more. And we went through that conversation for about 20 minutes and that’s it. I just held space for who needed it, which I think was the right thing to do. Hopefully. 

Ti-Fen  (30m 9s): Yeah, that sounds, that sounds right. And great to me. So the last section is some random and big questions. First, is there any one to two books that influence a lot of your thinking or value systems in these past few years? 

Wendy (30m 25s): Yes. So I, I always love when people ask this question, a book that I love and is near to my heart and will be forever, is called fostering resilient learners and it’s strategies for creating a trauma sensitive classroom. And it’s written by Kristen sours and Pete hall. And I actually am friends with them now and I work for them. I consult I’m with them, teaching and training people and how to create a trauma sensitive environment. And when I was at Delaware Teacher of the Year, I had to have a platform or something to talk about when I visited at different schools and communities. And I always talked about this need to provide a trauma sensitive classroom. 

I believe that it’s a moral imperative and it is what we need to do to support students because students can help what happens to them, but they come in with the effects of what happened to them and it’s our job to support them. So I love that book and it’s a quick read. You can read it on a weekend and then you can go into your classroom or your learning environment on the next Monday and do something differently. So I’m, I really recommend it fostering resilient learners. And then in this book, the second book I’ll mention is not an education book, but it’s spoke to me in such a wonderful way. 

A friend gave it to me, it’s called rest. And the subtitle is why you get more done when you do less. And it’s by Alex, Sue, John Kim Pang. And it just talks about how we rest and how we can be really productive when we rest. And that rest may look different for everyone. So I’m a very active and driven person. I’m a morning person. I do a lot, even on the weekends, you always find me doing some kind of work because I’m pursuing like a side interest or we have another project going. And the book justifies for me that rest doesn’t always have to be like sitting silently, not moving rest can be hiking where your deep in thought or rest can be organizing, are doing a project where you are just coming away from your professional craft, because that’s often where we get ideas and figure out innovation, an innovative things that we can bring back to our professional craft. 

So I love that book called rest. 

Ti-Fen  (32m 24s): So if you have a super power to change education system in America, what would it be ?

Wendy (32m 31s): So? It would be to immediately and all of the systemic racism that exists and our education system, it would be to have everyone immediately be culturally responsive and to have a more representation of educators of color in the system to support our students of color. And that’s what a lot of people are working on. That’s one of my goals that I pursue in addition to advocating for and teaching about social, emotional learning. This is something we need to do a So we do no harm to any student and we help them achieve their greatness. 

It’s our job. 

Ti-Fen  (33m 5s): Right. So before we close up Wendy do you have any other thoughts that you want to share with our listeners? 

Wendy (33m 13s): So I just want to say to all the educators out there, Thank you every day for all you do thank you for being in the field of education. Thank you for supporting students. Thank you for working to grow and be better. We are in a difficult, difficult time, but in a way it’s one of the most exciting times and education because there’s a lot of innovation taking place. There is a lot of people who are tackling these really hard issues around racism and things like that. And the last thing I want to say is listen to your students. 

Your students can tell you what’s hard for them. Your students can tell you what their hopes and dreams are. Your students can tell you when they’re disengaged or they’re struggling. What the problem is. Just listen to them. If you place your classroom’s a student’s at the center of your classrooms and at the center of your own heart in education. And that’s where we can do great things for, for the people that we need to know. 

Ti-Fen  (34m 12s): Great. That’s really well-said. And the last, last thing I really appreciate Wendy you share so much great resource and activities for an hour.. And if our listeners want to know more about your work, how they can find you online. 

Wendy (34m 36s): Oh, great. Yeah. Please contact me if you have questions or you need support. So I’m active on Twitter. My Twitter handle is at Mrs. Wendy Turner. I also have a Teacher Facebook page. It’s a Wendy Turner 2017. Delaware Teacher of the Year. And just like you contacted me through Twitter and through Facebook, please reach out. And my email is Wendy Turner at gmail.com. If you go into my Twitter profile, there’s a link there for our website. And that website is a wake lit collection, a curated collection of all the different articles. 

I’ve written podcasts that I’ve been on presentations that I’ve made. So if you’re wondering about me or you’re looking for ideas, or just to understand how I think, please check out that collection of my work and then, and do reach out. I, I shared at the beginning of this broadcast that I am a global learning fellow, and I truly love to be connected to educators around the world. I’ve done presentations and trainings in Africa. I have replied to teachers in Asia and Europe about questions that they have. I’m friends with a teacher from South Africa because of my trip there with NEA foundation. 

And So please do reach out because the common language is that language. That’s at the heart of all educators, that language of love. And I’d love to help you if I could. So thank you for joining me today. Thank you to fed. I had a wonderful time and I really appreciate being asked, and please do let me know if you and your listeners need anything and keep doing a wonderful job. 

#27 如何活化漢字,增進特殊孩子識字的能力 – 李雪娥老師 (How to learn Chinese by understanding its meaning behind)

“我們需要了解教學的教材是什麼,它的本質又是什麼,所以教學障的孩子並不是把教材簡化,教學速度放慢,這樣是不能解決問題。” – 李雪娥老師


追蹤雪娥老師: 臉書

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本集大綱 Show Notes

  • [1:12] 老師專研特教的啟程。老師分享當初如何發現自己小朋友有學習障礙。
  • [4:30] 確定有學習障礙後,老師尋求的援助。
  • [9:56] 老師在2012年時,提出了「形→義→音」的中文學習模式,稱做為「部件意義化識字教學法」,為什麼傳統 形 > 音 > 義的模式不適合?
  • [12:47] 部件意義化識字教學法的實際例子。
  • [14:09] 課堂上,老師使用的輔助工具以呈現漢字的意義。
  • [19:13] 每個文字都有辦法用意義帶出來嗎? 
  • [21:46] 哪個時刻讓老師發現「部件意義化識字教學法」是值得推廣。
  • [23:26] 圖畫識字的教學法,但無法套用在老師學障的孩子身上。
  • [25:56] 老師發展「部件意義化識字教學法」的起承轉合。
  • [32:20] 利用小篆為媒介帶出漢字意義的例子。
  • [39:34] 部件意義化識字教學法不僅只適用於學障孩子。
  • [42:45] 如果老師有一個超能力去改變台灣教育,最想改變的是什麼?
  • [50:19] 結語

回顧我們的教學 Reflections

  • 當您孩子時常無法記起某個字時,您會如何教導他們呢?
  • 對於學習有困難的孩子,您的教導策略是什麼呢?

改變的一小步 What can you do tomorrow

  • 從醫學或科學角度了解學習狀況較特殊的學生或孩子,進而之,您或許能發現適合他們的方式而非簡化教材。
  • 對於孩子無法了解的漢字,嘗試拆解部件且教導其意義。(不知如何踏出第一步? 歡迎參考雪娥老師的臉書,其分享許多解析鷹架。)

音樂來源 Song Track Credits

#26 Integrate Technology in Learning Living Skills with Tarja Tolonen

In this episode, we are going to explore how we can integrate technology in classroom to cultivate life skills for special young adults (Age 16 -18).  And we are really lucky to have Tarja Tolonen to join us today.

Tarja is a  Finnish special education lecturer at Savo Vocational College. She has extensive experience  in early education , adult education and special education.   She is Apple Distinguished Educator since 2015 (ADE).   As an ADE, she is a trusted advisor in integrating technology into learning environments and passionate about sharing her expertise in using technology to help engage students in new ways with other educators around the globe. 

Connected with Tarja:
Twitter | Facebook


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Show Notes with Selected Links

  • [1:40] Tarja’s journey into special education for young adults.
  • [3:05] Why does Tarja think special education requires creative teaching?
  • [3:48] When Tarja just started to teach, what was the classroom she wanted to create? Is it changed throughout these years?
  • [5:50] What is the moment that changed Tarja’s mindset that she doesn’t need to know everything in teaching?
  • [7:03] What does Telma education look like in Savo Vocational College?
  • [9:19] How does Telam tailor the curriculum for different individual needs?
  • [12:09] As a technology integration advocator,  what is the one technologies Tarja used the most in her classroom for communication?
  • [15:13] How do these apps help the students to communicate?
  • [17:28] What do students do with book creator app in the classroom?
  • [20:32] There is an interesting Facebook video post from Tarja that trying to use filter for people with speech disabilities.  What inspired Tarja to do that?
  • [22:35] Tarja’s favorite app for virtual learning environment.
  • [26:05] The proportion of nurses and special young adults in a classroom.
  • [26:37] Books that influenced Tarja a lot in these few years.
  • [27:48] What does education mean to Tarja personally?
  • [29:25] Parting thoughts


Please go here


  • Do you use any technology in your own classroom? What do you think the role technology plays in teaching and learning?

What can you do tomorrow

  • Try out Book Creator app to help your students to build their own cooking book, personal interests..etc with vivid pictures.

Song Tracks Credits

#25 如何創造差異化教學的課室 – 劉繼文老師 (How to create a personalized learning classroom)

“如果地上沒有箭頭,你會判斷一下,這地上有無車軌痕跡或是從側邊停車方向辨別走向,但是如果有了箭頭,就好像老師直接給予答案,學生就失去思考的機會。” – 劉繼文老師


繼文老師目前是新北市新泰國中數學教師.2020新北市SUPER教師 .學思達核心講師和均一教育平台顧問教師.「讓大象動起來」 是 近期老師出版的書,書中集結了許多實質的技巧讓老師們能打造以學生為中心的課室

追蹤繼文老師: 臉書

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本集大綱 Show Notes

回顧我們的教學 Reflections

  • 您覺得老師在這資訊爆炸的時代下,與以往扮演的角色有何不同?
  • 您是如何顧及課室中進度超前或進度落後的學習者呢?
  • 在培養終生學習者的浪潮下,您如何提升學生自學能力呢?

改變的一小步 What can you do tomorrow

  • 探索線上教學影片如均一課程,選擇一個可輔助您課堂的影片,給予學生空間用自己速度學習。

音樂來源 Song Track Credits

#24 From Digital Citizenship to Digital Leadership – Jennifer Casa-Todd

“We help model for our students so that they can use social media to develop a positive digital identity, understand the audience, use their voices for change, use their voices to connect with others.” – Jennifer Casa-Todd

How much time do you spend on social media daily? How about your students or kids? It is hard to deny that social media is more and more ubiquitous. And today we have Jennifer Casa-Todd who is specializing in social media in K-12 context to guide us about teaching kids to become not only a digital citizen but also a digital leader.  

Jennifer Casa-Todd is an award-winning educator, wife, mom, Teacher-Librarian at Cardinal Carter CHS in Aurora and a former Literacy Consultant for the York Catholic District School Board.  She is also the author of the book, Social LEADia which gives out practical tips for moving students from digital citizenship to digital leadership.   Jennifer is passionate about showing teachers and students how they can use technology and social media to make the world a better place. 

Connect with Jennifer:
Website | Twitter


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Show Notes with Selected Links


Please go here


  • How do you teach your kids the usage of social media?
  • Are you the role model for your kids as being a digital citizenship?

What can you do tomorrow

Song Tracks Credits

Transcript: #24 From Digital Citizenship to Digital Leadership – Jennifer Casa-Todd

Ti-Fen (1m 21s):

From Digital Citizenship to Digital Leadership Jennifer she’s passionate about showing teachers and students how they can use technology and social media to make the world a better place. Now lets enjoy our conversation with amazing Jennifer hello Jennifer will come to our show.

Jennifer (1m 45s):

Hello and thank you so much for having me.

Ti-Fen (1m 49s):

So Jennifer you have ample knowledge, ink, social media in the K-12 context. What is the story behind that you decided to dedicate your life in this area?

Jennifer (2m 3s):

Well, I had a sudden realization and there were many things that happened at, at that time in my life. The first of which being that I had a job interview, my daughter was asked, what social media are you on? And what will I learn about you if I go there? And it really prompted me to think critically about the way in which I myself was using social media in the context of teaching and learning and connecting with others. But that I had spent very little time mentoring my own daughter around the use of social media so that she could answer that question effectively.

Jennifer (2m 43s):

And then by extension, I thought about the ways in which we constantly tell our students or what not to do on social media, but I really didn’t help equip them to answer that question either. And so I began to think about that a great aye, then met a or gotten to know a George Corose a little bit better. And he was talking about the idea of digital leadership as using the vast reach of technology and social media to improve the lives and wellbeing in circumstances of others. And that really radically changed the way I started to look at things. And as a result, it, it sort of forced me into the trajectory that I now find myself.

Jennifer (3m 29s):

So I was seeking out students who were using social media positively and began to found spine. So many of them and recognize that there was always either a caring adult mentor or even sometimes a student mentor in their lives that allowed them to use social media differently. And so I continue to challenge the idea that social media doesn’t have a place in education because it’s so as you just said, so ubiquitous for students in our world right now

Ti-Fen (4m 1s):

For educators who have a really negative impression on social media for our kids. How do you think that as educators, you rethink social media in your education?

Jennifer (4m 16s):

Well, certainly there are lots of negative aspects to social media. That’s the absolute reality, right? But if we are going to educate our students to graduate with the still skills that they need to function in our world to not use social media is doing our kids have great, a great disservice. So first of all, I think we need to understand that social media does play a role in our lives and we have to teach knowing that it does for me, I think it’s about not just harping on what students can’t do. I advocate for class social media accounts in the power of a class social media account is that you could very much engage in digital citizenship lessons in context, but you could also model for students how to use social media positively all while staying within the confines of our, of the law.

Jennifer (5m 16s):

Because as we know that students under the age of 13, shouldn’t be on those platforms anyway, even though they are in great, great, great numbers, right? So I always talk to teachers about, you know, where is it that your students are primarily and what about creating a social media class account where students can participate in posting. But if you could have those conversations about notifications or blocking somebody or, you know, lets use our social media account to make a positive difference in someone’s life today. Right? So you can do all of that in context through a class social media account.

Ti-Fen (5m 58s):

That’s right. So I’m really so Jennifer you mentioned that by law, like Kids can not use social media under their 13.  It it  only in Canada or that other

Jennifer (6m 11s):

It’s mostly, I think it’s a regulatory law in place. There are lots of like there’s FERPA and COPPA. These are a regulatory laws that talk about privacy of young people. But most social media accounts have 13, not, not as a magical number because suddenly when you’re 13, you’ll know how to navigate it well, but just in terms of being able to regulate the, the age of students who are on the platform, most of the big ones, your Snapchat, your, your Snapchat, your Twitter, your Facebook, your Instagram, those all have 13 as a And even Tik have 13 as the age of 18.

Ti-Fen (7m 2s):

Yeah. I think when you register, when you sign out, they will ask you your date of birth and then they will see if they, they were like, let you choose or not. Right?

Jennifer (7m 14s):

Yeah, absolutely. And in my experience, students or kids lie about their age so they can get into platforms, right. And even in that conversation is really important. So you’re not allowed to be on these platforms cause we’re not, you are not 13, but I asked the teacher we’ll have a class account so that we’re abiding by the law, but that you can learn how some of this use is being used and certainly communication with parents around. Why might you have a social media account? You have these students who are, there’s an incredible chasm between students who use it well and who don’t. There’s an incredible chasm between parents who sort of model and, and stay involved in their students’ social media accounts and those who don’t.

Jennifer (7m 58s):

So we have this, this whole group, this whole generation of kids who really are playing in these spaces by themselves. And, and I think that’s a real concern. And in some teachers might say, well, clearly there’s no place. I mean, we have enough to do in teaching and learning without engaging in social media. But then you hear things like, you know, 96% of high school students can’t tell the difference between a credible news article and one that has sponsored content. And when you recognize that students consume much, if not all of their news from social media outlets, then you wonder, well, where does that media literacy come in?

Jennifer (8m 43s):

And then if parents aren’t engaging in these conversations at home and teachers are not engaging in these conversations at school where, you know, what’s happening here and And, you know, given so many of the circumstances in which we find ourselves today, I think that we really need to re re-emphasize what it is or how it is that we’re teaching using social media and how we’re looking at media literacy in our classes too.

Ti-Fen (9m 12s):

And before we dive deeper into Digital leadership, I do want  to touch on digital citizenship so for you, like what is digital citizenship?.

Jennifer (9m 24s):

So for the most part, we define digital citizenship as using technology in responsible ways, you know, being appropriate and being safe. And thankfully some of that has changed since I began this work, but for the most part, we still confine our digital Citizenship ideas and lessons around what not to do, keep your password safe, you know, don’t cyber bullied, those kinds of things, all very, very important, like I said, but certainly important in the context of using some of the skills. And so mostly, unfortunately our approach has been, don’t do this, don’t do this, don’t do this.

Jennifer (10m 9s):

That hasn’t been about how are we using this? What are the nuances of this? And how can we, how can we change it for the better one?

Ti-Fen (10m 19s):

The way a teacher can teach Digital citizenship in their classroom.

Jennifer (10m 24s):

So there are lots of really effective resources out there for digital citizenship per se. So common sense, media has an incredible program and common sense. Media is great because they’ve sort of moved away from not entirely, but they have, they’ve moved away from the, no, don’t do this to, you know, what are ways in which you can connect with others and positive and meaningful ways. If you’re a younger students, a B internet, awesome by Google is an effective resource as well. Again, it focuses very much on, you know, safe passwords and not cyber bullying, et cetera, but it is both of those resources are incredible ways to start, but like anything Digital Citizenship is not a checklist.

Jennifer (11m 13s):

Okay. At the beginning of the year, I, you know, I taught this, there you go check. Right? The, the true impact and power is when you engage in ongoing conversations about how social media impacts the way in which we communicate with others, the way in which we consume our news, the things that we create, the, the way, the time that we spend, like certainly an aspect of digital citizenship is, you know, that, that balance piece, right? So the time that we spend online, you know, taking a look at that,

Ti-Fen (11m 46s):

For example, if a teacher light, they would use some, ah, digital tools in the classroom. And when the students are engaging, they can just like bring up, Oh, by the way, we have to be my foe for all the words, et cetera. Right. Is not. And, and in this conversation, is a way keep happening in the classroom. And it’s not like just like one time and I’m turning it off. You just like keep reminding our students, what are the goop behaviors, the digital world.

Jennifer (12m 22s):

Yes, exactly. One of the tools that I use ’em and I can share it with you to add to your notes is the media triangle. And so for me, just having, you know, a digital citizenship lessons at the beginning of the year, without on an ongoing conversation, as you say about media literacy. So how are we ha how is media constructed? And in, in what ways can we impact or, or create messages. But these are really, really, really important. Having kids understand that there are there’s the media texts, and then there’s an audience in terms of how people receive it, as well as a production value.

Jennifer (13m 6s):

So, you know, a Snapchat is going to a post is going to be very different from an Instagram post is going to be different from a blog is going to be different than a journal article. So understanding the way media works and engaging in these ongoing conversations about how they work and then creating media techs for an audience, or are also really, really important ways that we can start to move Way from just those digital citizenship lessons that tell us to meet online <inaudible>

Ti-Fen (13m 51s):

Digital leadership is the fast reach of technology and social media to improve the life circumstances and wellbeing of others and Jennifer for you. What is digital leadership specifically about and why do you think we should not only be a digital Citizenship also digital leadership?

Jennifer (14m 13s):

So I began with that working definition. And so much of my work in social media is around George corrosives definition. But more recently, I just finished my master’s in curriculum and technology with a focus on social media and education. And I took a deep dive into a program at the time it was called the Ontario educational Student Chat. Now it’s called the Global Education Student Chat we’ve morphed it. And I looked at the student’s within that program. And the way it works is we have students who decide on topics and then they create a, a monthly topic and a Twitter chat, which alongside of that is a YouTube Chat.

Jennifer (14m 57s):

So the students, the student leaders essentially are talking about topics that are important to other students. They are using YouTube live, they are using a whole bunch of other digital tools to create graphics. We co-construct norms of behavior. So one of the things that we talk about is how you may disagree with someone’s opinion, but you don’t disagree with the person. So we have to be very careful about how we use our words when we’re talking to one another. And so in doing this deep dive for my master’s project, I started to recognize that the students who were sometimes leaders in person really became leaders in online spaces.

Jennifer (15m 42s):

And, and what did I see them doing? I saw that they were using their online voices to network and participate in and create communities and inspire change. So digital leadership is really the ability to use technology, especially social media, to develop a model, a positive digital identity. That’s what I saw in the students when I was doing my research. And it was amazing to me to see the extent to which the us Teachers, but also other students within the leadership team, mentor one another.

Jennifer (16m 23s):

And, and really, really these students by the end of even one year of being together in the Chat with this ongoing mentorship, we’re using social media very, very differently than, than other students. And so to me, that’s the ideal that we help model for our students so that they can use social media to develop a positive digital identity, understand audience, use their voices for change, use their voices to connect with others. And that, that, that study, it was, it was so powerful because it share, it showed me that I was in, I was going to the right direction.

Jennifer (17m 6s):

So all of the literature review, all of the, all of the things that I had researched really did reinvigorate the need for this work and the importance of a shift for us in education.

Ti-Fen (17m 23s):

From your book. You mentioned how to make this transition is by finding a passion and start influencing Arthur’s to make a positive change. So could you give as an example of how you nurture digital leadership in your own class?

Jennifer (17m 42s):

Well, so I am a teacher Librarian, so I don’t have my own classroom per se. I did teach summer school. And so, so many of these ideas when we talked to students about their online identity, right? What are the conversations, having conversations and explicit lessons around their online identity modeling for students, even in the clubs and the councils that I, that I monitor, you know, having, Student having conversations about what your creating and what your putting out there, and what impact do you want it to have? You know, these are all really important things that, again, we, whenever it’s possible in the context of our class or our club or our committee, but also certainly as I continue to be an adult mentor for the Global Education Student Chat.

Jennifer (18m 33s):

And I feel like that’s such an incredible opportunity for students all over the world to be able to have to jump in on this conversation, to see other students in acting as digital leaders, to be able to respond and a very different way than what they might be used to. Because so many of our students used social media for entertainment. I would, I would argue so many of our adults do too. So in continuing to work with the Global Education Student Chat team, I feel like, you know, this is a good segue for any students, you know, K-12, I guess most of our students are from grade four to grade 12, to be able to come in and recognize that there was so much more they could be doing online.

Ti-Fen (19m 23s):

Got it. So Jennifer, if a teacher  comes to you and says that, Hey, I really want to create a lesson plan that to digital leadership, how would you guide them to do this lesson plan?

Jennifer (19m 45s):

So as much as I would love to say this, you know, step number one, is this a step number two? Is this step number three? Is this, I think it’s a little bit more complex than that. I think that what, what we need, what you need to do is you need to talk to students first and foremost, about the way in which they use media and the impact that it has on them. And then secondly, there’s a really good a lesson I use with my high school students in the Google Digital applied skills, and it talks about their online identity. And so I use that as a basis for talking about your digital footprint and your online identity.

Jennifer (20m 26s):

And then from there we talk about what are the weight, how is it that you’re using social media right now? And then asking that question, what social media are you on? And what will I learn about you? If I go there and having a sense with students or having conversations, and then engaging in activities around how could you use your online presence positively for your future? And you’d be amazed when you engage in those conversations and in the high school, that there are some students who will share while I have a blog and I have this website, I have this business ’cause, we, we, we don’t often listened to how students are using media in their own lives.

Jennifer (21m 12s):

So, so I would say it’s not a great when with younger students, it’s begin a class, social media account, seek out opportunities to connect with parents and other classes, and then to use your social media presence together, to engage in questions like, you know, who are the kinds of people that we should follow and how, when people look at our account, what do they, what do we want them to know about us? Right. So, so to have an online presence together as a class for younger students, but then as we get older to really sort of reemphasize, how are you using social media?

Jennifer (21m 56s):

How might you use it for your future? How might you use it to create a positive influence and really, really engaging in conversations with kids and dialogue? So your listening and, and, but also doing positively so that they have a mentor, or they have, they have someone who is doing things that they may be, are not used to seeing. Does that make sense?

Ti-Fen (22m 23s):

Yes. And that’s great. So basically they are three bullet points that I, I heard, like the first one is to talk to see you, then How like, what’s the impact in social media? And the, for the second one would be, what is the digital identity for then? And the third one is how could they use these platform to introduce a positive impact, like using blogs or a website for the business, et cetera. And so Jennifer, and I have seen, there is a keyword, a brow the next, like who, for younger students, who should they connect with, who she is a follow.

Ti-Fen (23m 9s):

So in your book, I think there’s a chapter talking about connection, which is very interesting. We know like most social media is to try to do the connection with people without boundaries and any tips that the teacher can connect with you then with me, no meaningful projects or a PPO to facilitate ditto. Leadership

Jennifer (23m 34s):

For sure. So the first bit of advice I would offer would be to leverage your own networks. I know on Twitter, I’ve created a list of international educators. So I want my students who may be from a very homogeneous group. You know, they know everyone in their own community. I want those students to connect with other classes in the world who might have a different perspective than them. And so one of the, you know, with the global read aloud, I know this is the last year for the global read aloud, but you actually don’t even need a global read aloud. You just need to be able to connect with leverage your own network, to connect with another grade to Teacher.

Jennifer (24m 17s):

Some are in the world and say, Hey, would you be willing to read the story? And could we, our two classes talk about it? You know, and maybe the connection begins on social media, you know, because it’s one of your own connections, but then you can take it to Flipgrid or you can take it to Google docs, you know, and then bring it back to social media. So students also recognize that social media has a place, but that sometimes ongoing conversations need to happen in different platforms, right? That’s an important lesson for kids. And, and another lesson that comes through for that is that you could use social media to connect with people and ideas that are different than your own, because I think that’s really important in our world today.

Jennifer (25m 4s):

The other thing I would suggest, so that was first to leverage your own connections in order to, to meet people from other places and using my Twitter list is a great idea. I’m Adam Hill, the person he’s a Teacher from Singapore with whom I facilitated an empowered Digital leaders course where starting a new cohort in the fall at the end of October. But one of the things he did was he created a list of his Student questions. They were engaging in an inquiry. And so he just created a spreadsheet and the student I want to learn more about, and then the students build out what they wanted to learn more about.

Jennifer (25m 47s):

And then he had a column for anyone online, again, leveraging his own social media network who had expertise in that area to be able to help mentor that student, because we are kidding ourselves. If we think that we’re the only experts, right? So to show students that you could use social media to connect with experts around the world, such a powerful thing. So, so you, you leverage connections in your in-person communities, but also in your online communities and directly respond to what the students are thinking about.

Jennifer (26m 29s):

The digital human library is another really great place to find experts to connect with. That’s something that my friendly castle created many years ago that I do highlight in social media, but it’s just being creative about how we can use social media platforms to reach out to experts. Certainly with COVID. I was amazed at the number of artists, the number of museums and zoos, and you name it that started to create programs, virtual programs for us to learn, right. Connecting with some of those, you know, those communities, those organizations, so that you could bring them into the classroom and then students can see, Oh my goodness, like Facebook live is a tool that’s being used by, you know, the children’s museum.

Jennifer (27m 24s):

And I’m learning so much the aquarium. I can’t remember the name of the aquarium. Oh, but they had a program regularly. I don’t know if they still do that anymore, where they were teaching us about sharks and jellyfish. So, so just being open to the fact that learning doesn’t necessarily need to come from our textbooks, but that there is a whole world of learning out there. Is that we just need to speak out on social media is one way in which we can connect our students to that a lot around the middle

Ti-Fen (28m 16s):

To remind students when, after we can now with some experts And or influential people. So I’m curious is like, how do we, how do they, how do these people mentor the students? Are you folks working with them for the mentorship program or, or even just like when they follow , this kind of the mentor is happening there organically?

Jennifer (28m 46s):

Well, I think have, and so with Global ed Student, Chat, we’re actually, we meet monthly with the students. So we’re, we’re, we’re engaged in, you know, what should we do? What should our questions be like? You know, how would someone interpret this? Right? So that’s our role. That’s my role as an adult mentor in Global ed Student Chat. But as a teacher, I am a mentor. Like if you look at Albert Bandura is a theory of observational Leadership students pay attention to the role models. So again, if they see their Teacher, you know, always picking up their phone and being online, or, you know, interrupting everything in order to take a picture of, to put it on their Twitter accounts that sends, ah, you know, a, a very interesting message to kids where as if they see their teacher saying, we only check our class social media account once in a while, or it’s Friday, let’s reach to someone and make a positive difference, you know, send out a quotation, you know, why we do this weekly?

Jennifer (29m 48s):

One of the things that I found fascinating when I was starting to look at teachers who had class accounts and in particular, one of my former students, Robert <inaudible>, who I mentioned in the book quite a bit, his mentorship. So they have a class account, their students are engaged in communities. So they have a public relations committee. He’s not in the classroom anymore now, unfortunately, but he had a classroom, a community. He had a public relations committee rather who created the class blog and who posted to social media. It was fascinating. And it was a grade six class when those students were 13 and creating their own accounts, those accounts very much resembled what they had seen, Mr.

Jennifer (30m 33s):

Conone do with his own account. Right. So we cannot underestimate the power that we have to impact our students. And, and that’s just frightening. And, you know, in some ways that’s so, you know, ah, you know, the, the impact that we have as teachers can sometimes feel like an incredible responsibility, but it’s true, right? Our students watch what we do and they, they learn so much from us, not just in terms of the content we teach, but the things that we, that, that, that we have, the things that we help them experience and the, the actions that we take in our classrooms.

Jennifer (31m 14s):

So I would argue that were all, we can all be media mentors for our students, depending on how we approach the topic of social media and education.

Ti-Fen (31m 27s):

Great. So gear every teacher’s around the world, you are the role model that was for your students. Jennifer, and let’s go to our random questions part. So what are the one or two books that have influenced your thinking? Well, in the past few years,

Jennifer (31m 53s):

So with regards to this topic in particular, I would say a participatory culture and a network to era by Henry Jenkins and Dana Boyd and <inaudible>, and it’s complicated by Dana Boyd. But more recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about how sometimes social media could be almost an echo chamber, right? So depending on who you follow, or you have the same ideas, you know, the same new stories you think that everyone in the world has the same ideas that you do. And so I’ve been a reading, a book called a blind spot, a good intent, a blind spot, the implicit bias have good people.

Jennifer (32m 36s):

And it has really made me think about how we can use social to interrupt our perspective, to, to make sure that we aren’t always in that sort of filter bubble and how sometimes when we consume media, it is with a bias and, and an understanding that bias and looking at a variety of different perspectives is really important. So that, that is one book that’s more recently been really making me think about the way in which I interact on my social media channels.

Ti-Fen (33m 8s):

That was pretty interesting. So if you have a super woman power to change one thing, the Education, See saying Canada, what would it be?

Jennifer (33m 19s):

I wish I could sort of take a magic wand and, and, and, and help educators to move away from teaching content and more of a move towards teaching students and understanding the way in which our world today is impacting so many things. So I just, I just feel like sometimes we’re so bound by tradition and our quote unquote curriculum that we don’t take a step back to really think flexibly about what we’re teaching in, how we’re teaching it.

Jennifer (34m 1s):

And, and I know there’s so many obstacles, there’s time. There’s, you know, the, the restrictions that we feel like our, that are placed on us. But if I had a magic wand, I would just say, you know, let’s, let’s get rid of all of that traditional stuff. And let’s really rethink the What. It is that were teaching in how we’re teaching It so that when our students graduate, they, they are better equipped to deal with the world into which they’re graduating.

Ti-Fen (34m 30s):

Yeah, that’s great. I think a lot of teachers, sometimes we would be really constrained by the standardized tests and is, is it takes time is really hard to change these paradigms. So Jennifer do, before we close up, do you have any other thoughts? 

Jennifer (34m 56s):

Sure. I I’m. Can I, can I at risk of sounding like an advertisement here, I have two books coming out. One is coauthored with Lee castle, who was the founder of Digital a human library, and it’s illustrated by a former student, a Sahara for a farmer. And it’s a book called Aubrey bright stories that connect us, its a children’s book and it’s published by edgy match. And it’s an intergenerational story of a young girl and her relationship with her grandmother and really taking a look at technology and how it connects us. So very much in line with this conversation.

Jennifer (35m 36s):

And I also have a companion book to Social LEADia raising Digital leaders, which is, is, is going to be for parents that, that parents, a gap that we sometimes see. And how do we promote digital leadership? You know, from that point of view, from that perspective of a parent, I also would invite you to check out Global ed Student Chat. So it’s Global ed S S chats I’m on Twitter, on Instagram or on our website. Global ed Student chat.com because I really, really passionately believe that when students start to see something different, they will start to behave differently.

Jennifer (36m 21s):

And it’s a great opportunity for your kids to meet other students in the world who we are talking about, the same things that they are

Ti-Fen (36m 30s):

Amazing. I will make sure they are on our show notes. So if people want to learn more about your work, how can they find you online?

Jennifer (36m 41s):

My I blog@jcasatodd.com and you can find me on Twitter at, at J Casa Todd and certainly through my blog. If you wanted to contact me for further information to have me come out and speak or just because you have a question and there’s a contact form on J Casa todd.com.