Periodic Table Battleship

A few months back I shared that my favorite game is periodic table battleship on Twitter. I first stumbled across a version of this game when I was researching for activities to do as a student teacher many years ago. Since then, I have adapted the game for my students and my purposes. Here is how we play.

Learning Goals
I use this game as review, but it certainly could be put other places in the unit. It is effective way to get students practicing electron configurations and noble gas notations.

Class Setup
To get started, I give each student a laminated periodic table. It works just as well use periodic tables in plastic page protectors. Each student also needs a dry-erase marker and somewhere to do scrap work.

Game Setup
Each student should set up 2 "ships" on their game board (periodic table). This is done by outlining a chunk of elements. I tell my students to do a ship of 3 and a ship of 4. The elements must be next to each other vertically or horizontally.

Game Play
In Ba…

2020: New Year, New Goals

In 2019, I spent some time reflecting on the previous year and setting goals for 2018. I enjoyed sharing them with you because I think it is incredibly valuable to write your goals down and to share them with others. I find it helps me stay accountable and I love looking back on the progress I made over the course of the year. I have never been fond of New Year's Resolutions because goal setting should not be a once a year event. I am however very fond of taking time at the beginning of the year to write down what goals I'd like to accomplish by this time next year and I would encourage you to do the same.

Peace Out 2019 ✌️

Last year, I said I wanted to bring back #delachat and I am proud to say that I hosted 9 chats last year! We are schedule to start the 2020 chats on Monday. I said I wanted to make moves towards my 6th degree black belt and at the end of December I submitted my application to test because I had fulfilled all the prerequisites. Lastly, I said I wanted to be mo…

Sphero Workbooks

Over the last month, I have started to really delve into using Pages as I created lesson activity guides for Sphero to use with my high school students. I started by using lessons on and adapting them for my students. My favorite part of using Pages is that I can include placeholders for students to take notes, sketch plans, and submit media (images, videos) as evidence of learning.

The way I structured my unit was that I did the first three lessons (adapted) from the Blockly lessons on Sphero edu and then finished my unit with a cumulative design thinking project. The project required students to (1) sketch out a maze design, (2) measure and create their maze, (3) program the robot to successfully complete the maze, and (4) create a Clips video to demonstrate all the steps they had taken and the finished product.

I have to say, creating Pages workbooks is so much easier than I thought it would be! I am excited to continue to develop them and share them with yo…

Video Game Club and a Mindshift

In middle school, I wrote a research paper on all the bad things I could find about video games. I was closed minded and couldn't imagine a case where I would be pitching to my administration all the positives of video games. I never in a million years would have guessed that I would now be overseeing my school's first video game club, but I am and I love it.

This summer I did an Ignite talk at ISTE. While freaking out backstage, I met Josh Bound, a Pennsylvania educator who I quickly learned was in my Apple Distinguished Educator class. Through that experience I learned about the Video Game Clubs of America and the story behind how the organization was founded. I was inspired by their mission and was finally able to see how video games could be used as a vehicle for social emotional learning and to help students gain confidence.

Fast forward a few months and a couple of my students came to me about starting a video game club during our activity periods. After a call with Josh…

Finding the Courage to Share Your Voice

On this chilly Sunday evening, I am reflecting on my last few months and am feeling like I have not been using the voice that I was blessed with. I have been a little absent from my blog and less active in my Twitter presence and I am ready to prioritize using my voice again to share best practices and continue to advocate for teachers and students.

Why am I feeling inspired tonight? I just watched the Ted Talk my sister in law gave on how she went from ordinary person to advocate. (The Ted Talk is available here and I highly suggest you take a 22 minute break from whatever you are doing to go watch it.) Andrea's talk demonstrates the power of using your voice and as an educator I feel passionately that part of my job is to help my students find and use their voice. I want to model this for my students by using my own voice.

As you may already know, I am a high school teacher. During the four years that my students are in my building, many of them begin to identify topics they fee…

Takeaways from ADE Institute 2019

Let me rewind before I start sharing my takeaways. I have been in awe of the ADE (Apple Distinguished Educator) community for as long as I have known about it. These remarkable educators share selflessly to better others. Knowing it was a long shot, I applied this year to be apart of this community. When I found out I had been accepted as part of the class of 2019, I was in complete shock. I actually handed my phone to my husband and made him read it to make sure I wasn't reading it incorrectly. So before I share my takeaways, let me just say how honored and humbled I am to be counted among some of the most innovative, caring, and passionate educators I have ever met.

To stay up to date on the work this incredible community is doing and to join the conversation, check out #AppleEduChat on Twitter.

Top 5 Takeaways - ADE Institute 2019

Surround yourself with innovative people. My biggest takeaway from institute wasn't an app or a project I planned to create, it was the relationshi…

Takeaways from ISTE 2019

Over the summer, I have had the privilege to attend some incredible professional learning events. ISTE has been a highlight of my summer the past two years and I can't wait to share with you what I have learned. I cannot fit all my takeaways into one post, so I'd encourage you to check out the #ISTE19 and #NotAtISTE hashtags on Twitter to see what was going on during the event.

Top 5 Takeaways - ISTE 2019

You can use Pages to create self-paced workbooks! If you didn't have the chance to visit the Apple pop-up classroom, I would encourage you to visit the Apple Teacher Learning Center to see what they were sharing. It was so cool to use the Pages workbook to walk through the stations. I can't wait to start creating more in Pages this year!
Develop a coaching cycle for your school. I listened to so many tech and instructional coaches share their best practices and while all different, at the heart they centered on the same things. Ultimately, as coaches we want to help our …