Friday, May 3, 2013

Microsoft Partners in Learning

Recently, I attended a two day Microsoft Innovative Educator training. It was fast paced, fun and full of terrific resources for teachers that I didn’t even know existed! Here’s a quick run-down on one of those resources! Certainly worth a look!

You’ll find some terrific free Microsoft software as well as some rich resources for teaching and learning! To begin with, you’ll need to create an account. Once signed in, select the resources tab and then Free tools.

Resources>Free tools
Here, you’ll find an extensive list of tools, many of which are free software along with tutorials and learning activities. Here are a few tools we explored during the training that you could use in your classroom today:
Windows Movie Maker - A free movie making tool. During the training I was able to use Community Clips to create a short video tutorial for Windows 8.
Microsoft Mathematics 4.0 - A powerful computer algebra system, with step-by-step equation solver and powerful visualization tools, that will help students grasp mathematical concepts.
AutoCollage - Select several images and the software will generate a collage in seconds!
Songsmith - Songsmith automatically generates musical accompaniment for anyone’s voice. Get rappin’ today!
WorldWide Telescope - Explore outer space from your classroom!
These are just a few of the many tools there. Spend some time - there’s something for everyone.
Another category certainly worth your time is Professional Development and then 21st Century Learning Design.

Professional Development>21st Century Learning Design
As part of the Innovative Teaching and Learning Research (ITL) project, rubrics were developed that help educators identify and understand how they can build students’ 21st century skills into their lessons. There are 6 rubrics of 21st century learning, each one an important skill for students: collaboration, knowledge construction, self-regulation, real-world problem-solving and innovation, the use of ICT for learning, and skilled communication. You’ll find the rubrics here (well worth your time) as well as examples of learning activities from around the world.

The Partners in Learning Network is a place where you can come to learn on your own or find and connect with other educators around the world! I'll be sharing more from the training in upcoming posts! Thanks Robyn and Sarah!

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