Open Educational Resources

Launching the World’s Largest OER Collection… Yeah, That Just Happened.

Perhaps nobody told you, but over 1.35 million objects from the Smithsonian's 19 museums, 9 major research centers, and the national zoo have been recently released and combined with custom tools to support rich, digital learning around the globe using the largest treasure trove of historical assets in the world. Somewhere between 9 and 10am EST on a chilly Thursday [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 November 24th, 2015|

The American High School Is Still Far From Operating as a 21st Century Institution

I loved my time teaching high school. I watched my own kids' largely enjoy their time in high school. I always look forward to working with high school teachers and being inspired by their passion. But I bristle whenever I have to contend with some general, grandiose statement applied to a high school wether it comes during a principal's well-intentioned [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 September 20th, 2015|

Shifting to Digital Learning Requires a Real Shift in Tools

Blended learning starts with moving learning activities into a digital environment where students can access independently from the regular classroom delivery process. But that's just the beginning. For years, we have been examining the steps by which effective teachers organize, construct, deliver, and support learning through the process of selecting viable learning objects, materials, creating supporting instruction, verbal guidance and [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 February 12th, 2015|

Can We Please Put the Digital in Digital OER Finally?

A call for more advanced thinking in the development of digital curricular formats designed to capture the way open learning objects and resources are organized and framed by educators to create quality instructional experiences for students. More regularly now, we are asked to look at and provide feedback to various agencies and projects that are forging the tricky waters of [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 January 6th, 2015|

An Invitation to Dream; an Imperative to Act

As part of a work-related project, I was reading the Smithsonian's Strategic Plan entitled, A Smithsonian for the 21st Century. Under the heading of Broadening Access, I was inspired by the following excerpt: ...we will leverage the power of technology using new media and social networking tools to deliver information in customized ways and bring our resources to those who [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 November 8th, 2014|

Back to School the Designers Go

Its time to go back to school for the Navigation North team. So we packed up a few researcher friends from the Smithsonian, a videography team, and our own personnel and we went and knocked on some classroom doors to see if the kids could play. Here were the questions, If kids could access anything that the Smithsonian has in [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 October 19th, 2014|

Assessing Assessment Applications

As our next installment of Back-to-School Digital Resources most teachers should know about, here are some assessment tools that "pass the test". (Get it? Test...Assessment Applications? Hellooooo...errrr, hmmm.) Plickers (https://www.plickers.com/) video tutorial Let's start with the funkiest one that I have grown to really like, Plickers. Here's how it goes: You go to Plickers and create your free teacher account and [...]

By | 2017-05-25T22:28:39+00:00 September 10th, 2014|