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Elementary Blogging: To Force, Or Not To Force

There seem to be wide-ranging opinions on when and how students should blog as part of their learning. In one camp are the proponents of blogging by choice. These educators advocate that students should not be made to blog because it’s not authentic. Forced blogging is like forced reflection—empty and devoid of meaning. They believe that…

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A Beginner’s Guide to Minecraft in an Elementary Classroom

“What’s it called again, Craftmine?” I wondered aloud with a confused look on my face to a classroom full of nine year olds, playing dumb the whole time. “It’s MINECRAFT!” they all yelled back in unison, smiling and laughing at how out-of-touch their teacher was with their world. The truth was, however, that I was…

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An Inquiry into Coding in the PYP

Should coding be a 21st century requirement? Could it be offered as a new foreign language? Might coding be the most important language in the world? These are just a few of the questions that have been at the center of many educational discussions across the world as schools grapple with the value placed on…

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The Case for Digital Manslaughter: Consequences for Online Abuse

12-year old Rebecca Sedwick, 13-year old Hope Witsel, 13-year old Megan Meier, 14-year old Viviana Agguirre, 15-year old Audrie Pott, 15-year old Amanda Todd, and the list goes on and on and on. All teenagers. All bullied. All dead. All by suicide. In breaching the topic of the effects of students’ digital actions, we must tread lightly with the…

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Contributing a Digital Thoughtprint

The word footprint often conjures up visions of Mary Stevenson’s, “Footprints in the Sand” poem, set alongside a picturesque sunset over the ocean. In the poem, the author’s Lord reveals to her that throughout her most troubled life events, when she thought she was abandoned and alone, she was actually being carried. If only we…