Ben Johnson

Blog Posts

Tags Technology Integration
December 10, 2012

The iPad made a transformation in John's learning demeanor. Where once his attitude blared, "I dare you to teach me!" now it screams, " Teach me more!" Wouldn't that be a great story to be able to tell? It would be solid proof that technology transforms learning and teaching (this is the...

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Tags Technology Integration
November 12, 2012

For the first two months of school, "When are the iPads going to be handed out?" was a continual mantra from students and teachers. But finally, when we were able to tell them a day, frustration turned into anticipation. Southside High School's goal was to efficiently assign an iPad to each...

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Tags Administrators
October 22, 2012

Yes, let's give students iPads so they can be smarter and learn better. It sounds so easy. The reality is that there are many unknowns, like how do you hand out 800 iPads and keep track of which student has which iPad, and how do you get 800 students to register with iTunes so they can use...

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Tags Student Engagement
October 9, 2012

Last week our school celebrated homecoming football week. All week long, students, teachers and community members participated in pep rallies, parades, and school decoration, while the football teams unceasingly practiced. The much-anticipated homecoming game was well attended, even in pouring...

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Tags Teacher Leadership
September 21, 2012

Rarely will a new principal leave things at a school just as they are. Sometimes those changes do need to happen, but the teacher perspective might be the principal is coming in and trying to fix things that aren't broken. Instead of saying, "Throw the bum out!" I have some suggestions to help...

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Tags Student Engagement
September 10, 2012

This week, I watched a science teacher use sticky notes in a very creative way. To check for understanding, the teacher gave each student a sticky note and asked each of her science students to give concrete examples of the vocabulary that they had learned in class. As the students exited the...

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Tags Student Engagement
August 24, 2012

In Texas we have a new state test called the State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness (STAAR) and some schools like mine, were surprised by the student poor performance in writing. As I was reviewing the low scores, I began thinking, "What else can I do to help my students write better...

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Tags Student Engagement
August 6, 2012

Missy Franklin not only won the gold medal in the 200-meter backstroke, she also set a world record of two minutes and 4.06 seconds. I was swimming on my back the other day -- certainly not nearly as fast as Missy -- and I wondered how she was able to swim straight without being able to see...

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Tags Student Engagement
July 23, 2012

Have you ever tried to eat a mango? Well, it is quite an experience. Though mangos are my favorite fruit, I do not indulge as much as I would like because of the hassle of pealing and then eating it. To date, I have not personally found a clean way to eat a mango. It's kind of like trying to...

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Tags Technology Integration
July 9, 2012

The micro-computer revolution of the 80's radically improved how teachers and schools carry on the business of learning. We now have iPads in classrooms that will not only improve it, but it has the potential to change the business of learning in schools. The question is, "Are teachers ready...

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