lunedì 29 febbraio 2016

CPD Italy

“Education should prepare young people for jobs that do not yet exist, using technologies that have not yet been invented, to solve problems of which we are not yet aware” --Richard Riley
Credit : Image by Duncan Hull  under license
Changes in education and the needs of teachers and learners

There have been many changes in my country and also in other European countries recently.Education is  now  undergoing  a revolution  and more and more learners are the " active " players. Education should enhance their " active" learning and the high costs of education together with the need for differentiation in learning  are influencing  the work of millions of teachers and Governments that aim at cutting  costs but  require high performance and top quality.
CPD is part of a compulsory learning process that we are required to follow in Italy: " La Buona Scuola" has asked  Italian teachers to get more self-development and activities and tasks are more demanding.   Digital skills, CLIL for non-language  teachers, special needs and differentiation in learning are some of the skills and knowledge we are required to have.  But we do need to work on our own and much is done in our free time as  the courses which are offered cannot cover all the needs of the teachers.
Here are some interesting web links for Italian  teachers who need to be updated and know more about what is happening around us. Thanks to the web more and more we  a connected community online  and teachers have  access to new sources online or courses online to learn more.


CPD on line - spring  2016




I will write more about the ideas about the flipped classroom but as a teacher of English I have seen so many changes in the last ten years that  I need to get to  know more about  best practices.


Italy is required to improve the levels in education and to provide   better learning opportunities for  students.  More details can be found  on the web 

Modernisation and Erasmus+  programmes are now  " reshaping" our  system of education. This is true for Italy and all the other  European  countries.

Teachers are asked to be active players and to support learners. I am aware that the process of self- development  will mark the next years and my  CPD.  I have already started to be part of  an international community but I will need to work on my IT competences to become  a better teacher.

domenica 28 febbraio 2016

Mind Mapping and Web 2.0 Tools

                                                                Mind  Mapping
For five weeks I was busy in working on creating my ebook and thanks to the tutors online who supporting me and the other students  in the EVO session 2016  I came across the many tools that we can use today. The EVO session finished on 14th February but for most of us it was such a great experience that we are continuing our learning path into the many tools that we can find today and help us work better.

Mind mapping  tools were used in the course for developing the ideas and chapters of our books.
I  must confess that I  saw great presentations and  I would like to use more tools in my teaching situation.
It was a  surprise for me to see how many tools we can use and how they can help us in developing better lessons and support for students who are in difficulties.
Mind mapping is now required in the fifth year of the Italian secondary school as most students need to present a map of the topic they have  chosen and they would like to present  during the oral exam.
Mind mapping can be great for helping to study  school subjects  and develop a learning approach that is based on maps.

I have collected the main tools and the ones which I have used or seen in the presentations. I have embedded my collection in this post. I have tried three tools but  I am going to see how the others  work.
What I particularly liked and which I might use is the tool
This is very easy to use and you do not need to have an account: you just work online and then create your map. You can then save the map as a pdf document or as an image. I will present the tool to my students as many cannot work well on grammar and I will ask them to write their grammar.
This is a presentation about the future which I  created in just a few minutes:

The map is simple and it doesn't have any external links but it is useful for creating grammar sheets for students who need more help at school.
I had to correct some part of it and I could save part of the presentation:

Here is my collection of the tools online: I also tried to find more posts about the many tools which are available.

Some are free, many need a special subscription. Some are available for  mobile phones too.  I am learning more and will try to think about the way I could  embed or use them in my class activities or in my presentations and websites.

Mind Mapping Tools, by italianteacher

mercoledì 17 febbraio 2016

EVO 2016 Educators and Copyrights

         EVO 2016     Educators and  Copyrights
Do the  Right  Thing 
For more information check online

                My reflections on the course
The course was  a special session which lasted  five weeks and had a small group of teachers who shared ideas and learnt together. There was  a moderator in each session.
Learning happened on Google+ with some Hangouts and it was interesting for me to share ideas with others. 
The activities  were organized online and presented  in a website: We were guided and provided with links and  videos for each week.
I decided to take up the  session by chance. I did not have  much time but  it was something I needed to get into.  Internet, books, articles online and materials which are  99% copyright and often we use them without getting the permission from people who created them.

I did the course and  learnt about Creative Commons, Copyright and   Fair Use  and what was new to me was the idea that some people would provide  pictures and pieces of music which we can use if we provide attribution. Now I have bookmarked some resources which I can use without having to ask permission but just need to give credit. Most materials cannot be uploaded and shared online as we need to ask permission.
As an educator I need to know more, also because  now I work online and this makes my work more difficult. Now I am aware that I need to teach my  students how to work on other people's works.
American laws are different from the  European laws but I have learnt that I need to teach my students that they must not copy and that as an educator I need to post links to materials online but I need to be careful anytime I submit materials. Not all the videos online can be shared!

After discussing  Copyright and  Creative Commons we had to think about a lesson plan we wanted to create for our students.
Since I was working on another session  in creating e-books and I was working on  Romeo and Juliet  I chose to create  a lesson about carrying out some research about  Shakespeare and his time and how to work online and  searching  photos and documents.

This is my activity online- I have just submitted it to the moderators of my course: link to the padlet

The activities we did were based on discussion, sharing ideas and presenting our work in the sessions online.

I worked online and  wrote a sort of  a  draft about my activities, I had to discuss my lesson and other students' lessons and I was expected to provide feedback.
After the discussion I had to implement my lesson, in my case  I had to provide  a student's handout with interesting weblinks that my  students could use when searching for materials. 
It was a good way for thinking about how to teach how to work online and search for documents and at the same time I learnt a lot.
In the padlet you can see some important weblinks which were shared by teachers in the course.
                                  SHARING  RESOURCES
Among the last ones are these:
                                  OPEN RESOURCES ONLINE
TOOLS  ( tool for creating quizzes)  ( for creating  quizzes) ( English  Listening on line)  ( Free sound effects)


WHAT PICTURES I WILL USE  ( free fotographs for  teachers and students) useful for searching materials online

NEWS- Articles for ESL/EFL LEARNERS Free lessons



An interesting online presentation about  COPYRIGHT

Information about  Italy and Italian  Law

This is more or less what I have done in the last five   weeks.  It is an interesting way for learning how to work better.

Thanks to the teachers, the tutors who worked online in this  EVO SESSION.