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In this new series, author and educator Aaron Quigley shows you how to stay up to date with the latest educational technology and classroom management techniques. Each week, he'll introduce you to a new tip you can use to be more efficient, and increase student achievement. Aaron covers concepts like the flipped classroom, Common Core Standards, and the role of social media in education. The series also covers a variety of productivity apps, learning management systems, and other technologies, using a project-based approach that simulates the real K–12 or university classroom environment. Check back often for new tutorials, every Monday with Teacher Tips.
In this video we're going to take a look at how Common Curriculum can help us manage some of the day to day tasks of being an educator, such as how do we readjust our lesson plan schedule when there's a snow day? Or how do I better collaborate with the teacher down the hall. Or even, how do I take a part of my lesson and make it available for students online. Let's go and explore those options now. Here I'm in the week view of Common Curriculum. And let's say that Tuesday, February 25th was a snow day. So schools have been closed and your entire week has now been thrown off in terms of lesson planning. Well Common Curriculum allows us to quickly bump one lesson to the next day.
Next to February 25th is a drop down arrow. If I select this arrow, I have the opportunity to bump these lessons. Now when I select Bump Lessons, I have two options. I can choose to remove the class session and then bump every single lesson down a day. This would be very appropriate for a snow day, or any reason that school is cancelled. Or, I can also choose to insert a new lesson here. This is a great tool for those days that you need to adjust your teaching schedule, but you still need to have content for the day that students are showing up. I use this often if I show up to school and find out that a field trip has been planned and half my students are going to be gone.
Or maybe there's an assembly that I wasn't aware of. Here I can quickly create a new lesson, add content to this lesson, so my students know exactly what I'm teaching them on that day. And I can take my completed lesson plan and bump it to the next day. Because we're using this fictional example as a snow day, I'm going to go and select And Remove Class Session. So I can now see that February 25th, there's absolutely nothing showing up on my calendar. All the lessons from the 25th were bumped to the 26th, the 26th to the 27th, and so on, all the way down through my entire teaching schedule. Now if you've bumped a lesson and you've decided that you want to undo this bump, it's a little bit of a process.
What you can do is go ahead and add in content for lessons you just bumped by clicking on Create a New Lesson. So for example I'm going to create a new lesson for my Making Food 101 class. I'll click Add Lesson Time. Now with some content on the 25th, I can go ahead and reselect the 25th, and I can choose to remove these lessons. When I remove a lesson, I have the opportunity to bump all of my lessons back one spot. So you can see that Common Curriculum makes it really easy to adjust your teaching schedule to whatever comes up within your building.
Another huge benefit is in collaboration. Once, you have a Common Curriculum account, you can choose to add collaborators to different classes. The best way I found to collaborate inside of Common Curriculum is to actually create almost to new group of classes that are the classes being collaborated on. In the upper corner, you can see it says first quarter. Any time I hover above this arrow, I can see the collections of the classes that I currently have. I'm currently in first quarter and I've built classes into the first quarter collection. I'm going to go and click Create a New Collection of Classes. Here, I can take a look at all the courses that are shared with me.
I can see that I've shared some classes with myself from a different Common Curriculum login. I'm going to go and select the fifth grade math class example and I'm going to compare it to my current sixth grade math class. I can now see that these two classes have been added into a calendar on the right-hand side and it's currently called Collection 3. Well Collection 3 doesn't really seem to be appropriate for this group of classes, so I'm going to change this name to CoPlanning. I'll click the Back button. And I can now see that CoPlanning is bolded, because those are the classes I'm currently working with inside of Common Curriculum.
I can now click on the long range planner. Here, I can view all of the units and the lessons for both my sixth grade class, the and the fifth grade class that I'm collaborating with. And let's say that the fifth grade teacher down the hall has a great fractions unit. And that you want to take that fraction unit, and use it as a review for your sixth graders. Well, I can simply click on the unit on the left hand side. And drag that unit over to my sixth grade class. I can even choose to position it in various locations. Let's say that right after geometry I want to do a fractions review. When I release my mouse that fifth grade fractions unit and all of its lessons now appear inside of my sixth grade math class.
And I can also now go into individual lessons and take a look at what's laid out and make it appropriate for my own students. The last thing I'd like to show you for Common Curriculum is the class website that it automatically creates for you. To model this, I'm going to go and click back on my first quarter collection of classes. Here, the first thing that i need to do is to make sure that the website is turned on. I'm going to click on Classes, Schedules and Settings and then the Website button at the top of the navigation. As I scroll down, I can see that for each class I have the opportunity to turn a website on and off. Each class will have it's own unique web address that's created for it.
I can also give each class it's own unique title at the top of the webpage. The last option I have, is whether I should just have past and present assignments show up on the website, or if I should have past, present, and future. Now one thing to keep in mind, if I select past, present and future; then students are simply going to see a giant calendar and they can select the day that they want to look at. However, if I keep it at past and present, then my current day of teaching or my recent lesson, will always be the first lesson listed on the website. This is great if you're having students check the website for homework on a daily basis.
When they navigate to the link, all they have to do is look for the most recent post, and that's that night's homework. Let's go ahead and take a look at this website by clicking on the link, and I'm going to hold down the Cmd key while I click this, or the Ctrl key on a PC, to open it up in a new tab. I'll now go and select the tab, and here I can see the classroom website that's been created. Now as I scroll through this, you can see that there's not a lot of information flowing through from my particular lessons. I'm going to go back to my other tab. And I'm going to go and click on the Week view. So looking at the current week I want to find classes that are for the website that I just created, which was my fifth grade math class.
As I scroll down and find my fifth grade math class lessons, I now have the opportunity to choose what I would like to show up on the website and what I don't. For example, let's say I want to tell students exactly the things that I'm covering in an individual lesson. I can find the section, the lesson plan that I'd like to share using the dropdown menu I can go and click Show on Website. You'll now notice that a small globe has appeared next to that section for that particular day. If I go back to the classroom website, and I refresh the page, I can now see the things to cover is showing up for that particular day for that particular lesson.
This way, as you move throughout your week, you can choose exactly what your students need to have available online and what in your lesson plan is meant just for you.
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