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Posts tagged ‘Rita Sorrentino’

Tools of the Trade: ISTE 2015

By Rita Sorrentino

Although I was only able to attend ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) for one day, I came away with a wealth of ideas, inspiration, and innovation for teaching, learning, and leading in a connected world. With so many sessions, workshops and tryouts to choose from, it is easy to get overwhelmed. I made a tentative agenda of events, leaving time to explore the expo hall, peek at poster sessions, and chat with friends and colleagues along the way.  Here are a few of my takeaways: Read more

Tools of the Trade: Podcasts

By Rita Sorrentino

radio“Radio: it ties a million ears to a single mouth.”

In All the Light We Cannot See, author, Anthony Doerr, uses this powerful statement to emphasize the propaganda broadcasted across Germany to support Hitler’s agenda, and to give us a glimpse into the character Werner Pfenning, a boy with an enchantment for tinkering with electronic circuitry and a passion for seeking new knowledge and ideas through radio communication. Before only state-sponsored radio programs filled the airwaves, Werner and his younger sister, Jutta, secretly listened to a French Professor who sparked their curiosity about the changing world. The idea that “the brain has power to create light in darkness” lingered with Werner while he tried to block out the ultimate future awaiting boys growing up in an orphanage in the German mining town of Zollverein.   Read more

Tools of the Trade: Photography

By Rita Sorrentino

With the abundance of digital cameras and smart phones, most of today’s students have access and opportunity to take, store and share digital photographs, instantaneously.  With the popularity of this practice, it is extremely important for students to become proficient in using these and other tools of technology in effective and responsible ways. Giving students opportunities to learn from and with the tools that they are already using in their personal life, brings authenticity and relevance into the learning environment. Photography in the classroom offers students and teachers the convenience of documenting learning experiences, enhancing visual literacy, and developing critical thinking and analytical skills. Here are some suggestions for engaging students with photography as they use the camera lens to read and interpret the world around them. Read more

Tools of the Trade: Poetry

By Rita Sorrentino

“Poetry doesn’t belong to those who write it, but to those who need it.” These are the sentiments of Mario Ruoppolo in the film Il Postino. Mario, the temporarily employed peasant postman, is introduced to poetry late in his life through a developing friendship with his only client, the briefly exiled Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. Neruda’s passion and Mario’s urgency combine in this tender tale of friendship, love and the power of poetry. In a significant segment of the film, Mario enthusiastically tape-records the beautiful sounds of the Mediterranean island. Seagulls, church bells, waves and fishnets symbolize Mario’s life, love and loyalty, and initiate his desire to express his thoughts and feelings in poetry.  Read more

Tools of the Trade: Notetaking

By Rita Sorrentino

Note taking is an important skill for teachers, students and all lifelong learners. From making lists and doodling to organizing and processing information, note taking helps to focus our attention and to increase our capacity for understanding and remembering. It’s a good idea to try out different styles and strategies of note taking to build up a repertoire and figure out what works best. Of course, taking or making notes is only part of the process; it’s what follows next that makes a difference. If we have difficulty finding where we stored our notes, if we never go back and reread them, then our notes are not producing valuable results. Read more

How to Thrive as a Teacher: A Book Review

thriveThrive : 5 Ways to (Re)Invigorate Your Teaching  by Meenoo Rami

by Janice Ewing and Rita Sorrentino

During the winter months, teachers and students have more to cope with than just cold weather and icy roads. Deadlines, data-driven decisions, and daily demands of classroom life loom larger as testing schedules, teacher evaluations, and interim assessments fill up the calendar.   Finding time to accomplish all that is required of a teacher, while keeping students’ best interests at heart, can zap the energy of the best-intentioned educators. Read more