Friday, February 24, 2017

Make a game and review for a test all at one time

Third grade teacher, Carol Karna shared on Twitter how she used a free edtech tool to help students take a quiz and make it more fun. 

Class Tools has many sample games or you can customize it and create your own. I love that instead of Ms. Karna customizing it for her class, she gave the task to her students. In doing so, she started teaching them a little about the maker mentality that is a necessary part of STEM learning.

Here's the link to the Pac-Man game

Signs of Depression with Social Media

I'm not by any means a Psychologist, Social Worker, or Counselor. I'm simply a classroom teacher that observes student behavior and tries to grow as a professional. 

Recently my 17 year old son was riding in my car and shared some astonishing news. The older brother of a friend of his had passed away. He had taken his own life. He had posted a good-bye post on Instagram and that proceeded to commit this horrible act. 

I asked my son what had happened, what had caused his friend to feel so low about himself that he chose to take matters into his own hands. My son said, "he had problems with his parents". 

As an experienced teacher, I can tell you that it's not easy to tell the difference between a normal teenager that hates his parents and one that truly needs your attention. My suggestion is to take each sad child seriously, as if they could be depressed and suicidal. You never know. As teachers, we are on the front line. Our words can guide and nurture a young soul. Let's not lose sight of that.

Some signs of depression:

  • Online posts of ways of killing themselves (poison, weapons, hanging, etc.)
  • Images or online posts that show a sad or defeated person
  • Talking with friends about feeling worthless
  • Sits quietly in the back of the room and does not interact with others
  • Lack of interest in their own personal hygene or style