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Meeting the NETS-S and NETS-T Using ePals’ Free Tools Rita Oates, PhD

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Presentation on theme: "Meeting the NETS-S and NETS-T Using ePals’ Free Tools Rita Oates, PhD"— Presentation transcript:

1 Meeting the NETS-S and NETS-T Using ePals’ Free Tools Rita Oates, PhD

2 NETS-T White Paper Provided at NECC 2008 when NETS-T were refreshed, written by Ferdi Serim, who was on the NETS committee. Revised with examples from ePals Teacher Ambassadors for ISTE 2010 Available from ePals to share with others Nicole will have to post on her wiki

3 Six NETS-S Standards and Six Student Projects Elizabeth Simmons Grade 4, Sharon Elementary School Suwannee, GA Forsyth School District


5 The Way We Are Free ePals project Paired with a school in UK for activities Janet Gough, Cockerham Parochial School, was the other teacher Extended this project so that we could accomplish all the NETS-S standards with our students




9 NETS-S 1. Creativity and Innovation Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology. Students: a. apply existing knowledge to generate new ideas, products, or processes. b. create original works as a means of personal or group expression. c. use models and simulations to explore complex systems and issues. d. identify trends and forecast possibilities.

10 The Native American Writings As a template, the class followed a detailed Native American Writing Blueprint. Within a five-paragraph essay, the student became the voice of a landform, animal, plant or power sharing the environment with the tribe. By using sensory language, the environment was pictured, activities of the men, women, and children described, impact of the explorers felt, state of the tribe today given, and a prediction made about the future of the Native American tribe.

11 NETS-S 2. Communication and Collaboration Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. Students: a. interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media. b. communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats. c. develop cultural understanding and global awareness by engaging with learners of other cultures. d. contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems.

12 Monsters - Descriptive Writing A Story Starter was provided as a graphic organizer. Each child sketched and colored a picture of a monster Each student wrote a narrative describing the creature, detailing its adventure. All writings were posted to the class website under the Student Spotlight link.

13 Monsters - Descriptive Writing The monster writings and drawings were published onto the English school’s website under the ePals link. The UK students read the American monster writings, carefully picturing descriptive words and phrases. After reading the stories, they drew the monsters described and viewed our original pictures to see how closely their drawings matched. Both classes voted for three drawings that most clearly resembled their sketches. Winning drawings were linked to their website, and the artists were awarded gel pens. English winners and American winners were posted to the bulletin board outside the classroom.

14 NETS-S 3. Research and Information Fluency Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information. Students: a. plan strategies to guide inquiry. b. locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources and media. c. evaluate and select information sources and digital tools based on the appropriateness to specific tasks. d. process data and report results.

15 Weather Charts Students documented the weather in 30 United States cities – tracking temperature, wind speed, precipitation, sunrise, sunset, and phases of the moon. To record the information, each student got a blank weather chart with a link to the national weather bureau and city tourist sites and compiled a Weather Chart Hotlist. A list of questions was provided to guide research. After tracking the weather for ten days, trends were graphed and displayed for the grade level on the bulletin board outside the classroom. To fulfill persuasive writing standards, using the tourist hotlinks provided, the student provided reasons and examples why the traveler would enjoy visiting the city at that time of year. Extension: ask questions about the other city on the ePals forums or through a single email to another teacher in that city.

16 NETS-S 4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate digital tools and resources. Students: a. identify and define authentic problems and significant questions for investigation. b. plan and manage activities to develop a solution or complete a project. c. collect and analyze data to identify solutions and/or make informed decisions. d. use multiple processes and diverse perspectives to explore alternative solutions.

17 Million Dollar Project Before starting, each child was provided a project guideline, checklist, rubric, and pre-formatted spreadsheet. The guidelines gave an overall description of the project, parameters, and possible resources. Students could spend $1 million on college, home, transportation, hobbies, home furnishings, vacations, charities, taxes, gifts for each family member, and a gift to the teacher Offering a handy pacing guide, a checklist made research at home more efficient and productive. Built on Rubistar, the rubric informed both parents and students how the project would be graded. A completed copy of the pre-formatted spreadsheet was conveniently furnished with the other three handouts in a folio for quick reference and storing printed materials. That exchange of information with our ePals provided a great deal of information for the global Venn diagram inside the classroom.

18 NETS-S 5. Digital Citizenship Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior. Students: a. advocate and practice safe, legal, and responsible use of information and technology. b. exhibit a positive attitude toward using technology that supports collaboration, learning, and productivity. c. demonstrate personal responsibility for lifelong learning. d. exhibit leadership for digital citizenship.

19 The Way We Are Both the English school and the American school continued a yearlong ePal project titled “The Way We Are.” Students ask specific, cultural questions that were answered by their ePals abroad by email. Placing the results on a unique Venn diagram in the back of our room, tendencies were updated daily, comparing life in both cultures. Global awareness of the class skyrocketed, as the weather in both countries was checked daily and current information about life on two continents posted.

20 NETS-S 6. Technology Operations and Concepts Students demonstrate a sound understanding of technology concepts, systems, and operations. Students: a. understand and use technology systems. b. select and use applications effectively and productively. c. troubleshoot systems and applications. d. transfer current knowledge to learning of new technologies

21 21 st Century Skills A class survey indicated that familiarity with software including: Microsoft Office, Open Office, PowerPoint, Photo Story, Excel Spreadsheets and email Technical facility in keyboarding, jump drive, video flip cameras, digital cameras and scanners Knowledge of utilities such as spellcheck, grammar check, Flesch-Kincaid writing levels, and other online research tools

22 Check the Projects on ePals


24 Other ways to help (free) Project Forum Teacher Forum, “ePals Wanted”

25 Student Work Posted to Worldwide Audience

26 Great teacher-created projects

27 ePals Teacher Ambassador Contest Winners

28 Connecting 700,000 classrooms in 200 countries & territories 2,500 new schools/month Policy managed & Teacher supervised Trusted pipeline to the world’s classrooms TRUSTe certification

29 What is ePals? ePals Global Network – Internet’s largest social learning network reaching teachers and students in 200 countries for teacher- supervised, cross-cultural penpal exchanges, project-sharing and project-based learning, literacy and foreign language skill practice. Free ePals SchoolMail – Safe, protected, multilingual email designed for school safety. “Walled Garden” with only K12 students inside. Free. Used by New York City Public Schools. Free Projects – Some developed with National Geographic, others by teachers, most are five-email exchanges. Free Video Vault – A place to post your student work and see the work of other students in multiple formats. Free Forums – Students can read questions and answers from others, either general questions or related to projects. Free

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