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14 Apr 2014
Comments: 12

Mindful Monday…Collecting Reflections

In preparing for a keynote this month to elementary preservice and inservice teachers at Texas A&M, I felt some self-reflection was warranted. I thought back to my preservice days and even my first year of teaching… with no curriculum, no mentor, no scope and sequence, an outdated textbook, and very little knowledge of what actual classroom management techniques looked like in practice. It truly was a sink or swim time and I found I dog-paddled in the deep end for some time.

While the technology, as you can plainly see, has evolved…


… and my hair and tan has dissipated somewhat, I still venture to pose the question…

“Are our preservice teachers any better prepared and equipped to handle the challenges of instruction, pedagogy, and technology integration in today’s classrooms?”

Though every institution and teacher is very different, I wonder if we as a collective whole of seasoned educators could sprinkle in a bit of wisdom and personal insight to better prepare these teachers for the limitless potential and critical challenges the 21st Century classroom holds.

Cathy Yenca did just that with her Message to 21st Century Pre-Service Middle School Math Teachers.

While I bring my own insight to the desk, technology allows for collecting an even broader perspective:

“The smartest person in the room is the room itself: the network that joins the people and ideas in the room, and connects to those outside of it…” – David Weinberger

So, what if the room was my global PLN? Imagine the insight and lessons that could be collected and shared…

Truly there are no right or wrong answers. I am looking to collect feedback and insight from a wide variety of teachers and classrooms (e.g. 1:1, BYOD, and not 1:1). There are no required questions (with the exception of basic information) as I am sure certain topics will prompt some of you to respond over others. Any and all thoughtful feedback is much app-reciated:

And because the TechChef doesn’t leave a blog without sharing a tasty morsel of integration delight… here are few ideas for using Google Forms with your students:

This last one was so Heck-Awesome both visually as well as with resources that I felt it necessary to also embed below:


TechChef4u Alliteration Alliance: Check out the other topics in the Ed Tech alliteration portfolio:

And Stay tuned this week for “Wicked-Good Wednesday – 3 Ideas Worth Stealing” …


TechChef Presents

TechChef Presents: Where will Lisa Johnson be sharing her app-thusiasm next?


1:1 Deployment and Interested in 1:1 Deployment or PD strategies and implementation? Looking for a dynamic presenter or interactive workshop? Contact TechChef4u ( for parent presentations, hands-on workshops, keynotes, and much more! Read testimonials about TechChef presentations.

TechChef Techucation Gazette: Sign up to receive future issues of the monthly e-Newsletter: There are many more learning app-ortunities and professional development toolkits to come. If you don’t want to miss a morsel of this techucation feast, sign up today.



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1,600+ iPad Lessons Pinned HERE!

Contact TechChef4u to schedule Spring and Summer PD and Workshops:

“Differentiated iClassroom”  iTunes U course is now available!!!

11 Feb 2014
Comments: 0

Redefine and Remix your PD… Together!

I have to say I am overjoyed to find how popular and widely accepted the S.A.S.S.Y. SAMR model is. In less than a week, the post and interactive infographic has received over 3,000 views and almost 7,500 tag hovers. What I find most intriguing is the global impact of publishing online. The materials were originally designed to be delivered in a workshop here in Austin, Texas. However, making the infographic available online has garnered some worldwide social media. Below are a few examples:

S.A.S.S.Y. SAMR Floats on the Twitters

While it is always fun to see your materials and blogs tweeted and translated in to other languages. Truly, the reason I created and published the resource has little to do with international social media fame. It was ultimately a labor of love designed to demystify the model (as admittedly… it was even a little difficult for me to process and apply at first) and provide real world ideas for integration that anyone could digest.

But I feel like I can take this one step further… Truly the height of the SAMR model is about creating authentic learning experiences that draw from collaboration, online publishing, and even formative assessment. During the TCEA workshop, many thoughtful conversations were had amongst the attendees. In hindsight, I wish I had designated a scribe to document the insights, questions, and critical conversations to archive and share with others that were not able to attend.

The S.A.S.S.Y. SAMR workshop delivered at TCEA is officially over, BUT truly we never stop learning and extending our knowledge. So… I had an idea. Why not create a Google Form to collect input on the course as well as ideas for polishing and refining it? I know this idea isn’t truly new but I have added a few elements that I hope give it a spin:

  • Feedback on Content and Clarity of the Course
  • Resources that need to be added
  • Location Data to Create a BatchGeo Interactive Reflection map
  • Visible Thinking Strategies for Reflection

Wanted to ensure visibility and flexibility of content and feedback, I set the form options to publish and show a link to the results of the form as well as the option to edit responses after submitting if need be.

Embedded below is the Google Form. If you have consumed or reviewed the S.A.S.S.Y. SAMR resource, TechChef4u would love your feedback!

BatchGeo: If you are interested in seeing what the location data blended with the feedback can do for the professional development resources, visit Tammy Worcester’s site to learn more about BatchGeo.

Visible Thinking: If you would like to learn more about how you can blend Visible Thinking strategies with technology, check out Tracy Clark (@TracyClark08) and Sherry McElhannon’s (@librarye1fawesome Smore on the topic.

More SAMR Resources: And if you visited the Pinterest board collection of SAMR resources, you might like to know that the board featuring 60+ resources has now been curated to house over 100.

SAMR Tech Integration Pinterest board (100+)

SAMR Tech Integration Pinterest board (100+)

And I wanted to share a big thank you to Richard Wells (@iPadWells) for his kind words in reference to the S.A.S.S.Y. SAMR resource (read full article HERE). I am truly honored by his thoughts and feedback!

“The fantastic Lisa Johnson (@TechChef4U) has combined knowledge, resources, (one of them’s even mine), and a flare for design to produce a toolkit for educators to start understanding where to go with technology integration. This has inspired me to up my game further and definitely start using ThingLink properly!”

Also, if you have not visited Richard’s blog, he offers some most excellent iPad posters, app flows, and guides. One of his most recent posts was also quite app-licable, “iPad Teaching Is Not About iPads.”


If you would like to check out other sessions and workshops that Lisa Johnson presented last week at TCEA 2014, peruse all session materials HERE:

  • Groovy Graphics in the iClassroom
  • Sassy SAMR Toolkit
  • iPad Academy: 1:1 Implementation PD Toolkit
  • iPad Academy: Instant PD with iTunes U

Interested in seeing Lisa Johnson keynote – register for the TIC Keystone Area Education Conference here.

TIC Technology Integration Conference

TIC Technology Integration Conference

1:1 Deployment and Interested in 1:1 Deployment or PD strategies and implementation? Looking for a dynamic presenter or interactive workshop? Contact TechChef4u ( for parent presentations, hands-on workshops, keynotes, and much more! Read testimonials about TechChef presentations.

TechChef Techucation Gazette: Sign up to receive future issues of the monthly e-Newsletter: There are many more learning app-ortunities and professional development toolkits to come. If you don’t want to miss a morsel of this techucation feast, sign up today.



Chic Geek iJewelry on etsy!

1,600+ iPad Lessons Pinned HERE!

Contact TechChef4u to schedule Spring and Summer PD and Workshops:

“Differentiated iClassroom”  iTunes U course is now available!!!

16 Aug 2013
Comments: 3

Fostering the 3 F’s of Formative (Frequent, Fruitful, and Functional) Assessment

Eanes ISD has developed a two day Professional Learning Conference for their staff. During a session on the “Art of Questioning”, Pam Harris (@pwharris) discussed the difference between social and logical knowledge and provided some very useful examples. Her tips and anecdotes really set the stage for my session on formative assessment as her strategies could be applied to the tools that I would be sharing in the afternoon.

How did I ever know what my students were thinking before these fundamental digital delights? This session will showcase three tools that can be accessed on any mobile device to provide instant and formative and fetching and fascinating details about your student’s current understanding. Please bring a mobile device (e.g. iPad or Laptop) and an old exam you would like to freshen up. We will fire up our session with Infuse Learning and Nearpod and flash out new features in Google Forms. This session is meant to forge ahead through 3 tools and whet your appetite for integrating formative assessment in your classroom in the upcoming year.

Using Nearpod as a vehicle, I delivered a session on formative assessment to secondary teachers using three of my favorite tools: Nearpod, Google Forms, and Infuse Learning. Multiple participants wanted to review the materials after the presentation, so I decided to enable the “homework” version of the presentation… and share it with the greater education blogosphere too… that’s y’all… just so you know 😉

Formative Assessment Nearpod Presentation

Formative Assessment Nearpod Presentation

While you don’t have access to the pedagogy and tips I shared during the session, hopefully the resources inspire you to conduct more formative assessment with your students and provide a few interesting ideas. Please continue to share and share alike… for truly FORmative assessment ultimately benefits our students!

Nearpod Homework

Nearpod Homework

The PIN for the presentation is “HPKVY” and you will need to enter Nearpod as a student (rather than a teacher).

TechChef4u wants to hear from YOU: Please share how you using technology as a vehicle for ongoing formative assessment with your students in the comments or with – would love to share your anecdotes and feature examples in an upcoming post.


Interactive TechChef Thinglink

Check out the new Chic Geek iJewelry line!

1,200+ iPad Lessons Pinned HERE!

Contact TechChef4u to schedule Fall and Spring PD and Workshops:

“Student-Created Books in the iClassroom” iTunes U course is now available!!!


26 Jun 2012
Comments: 4

Creating and Collecting Digital Work – ISTE 2012

One of the most entertaining and engaging sessions I had the pleasure to attend was “Creating and Collecting Digital Work” with Tammy Worcester and Kevin Honeycutt. Not only were the tools they shared easily applicable to any classroom, their presentation style truly embodied many of the ideals of creativity, play, and value shared in some of the earlier sessions I attended (which will be summarized in a later blog).

Thoroughly enjoyed "Creating & Collecting Digital Work" session with Kevin Honeycutt

Tammy modeled the role of the teacher and Kevin channeled his inner child. The session essentially focused on creating and collecting digital work in various forms (e.g screencasting desktop work, capturing traditional pencil and paper tasks, recording audio products, and transforming digital creations into tangible items). All of the resources shared for the session (and many more) can be found on Tammy’s site.

Glad I sat in the front row for this session – my iPad was able to capture some of the best moments. Grab a bag of popcorn and enjoy!

Truly loved the idea of collecting all of the work in a digital class dropbox created with a Google Form.

One last nugget. Kevin shared a great idea. Create coffee mugs with a QR code hyperlinked to one of your student’s digital delights or a classroom site that is constantly updated with student work – what a great way to start a teacher’s or parent’s morning.

25 Apr 2012
Comments: 0

The Power of Google

Yes, I typically am an Apple fan girl, but last night (while watching an episode of New Girl), the new Google commercial made me smile and dare I say shed a happy tear. Part of the my emotion was due to the sentimental nature of the video and the other to the power, versatility, and ever-evolving nature of Google tools.

That being said, I thought I would share my new favorite Google tool.. which is actually a script… Flubaroo. I was first introduced to the tool in a session with Wesley Molyneaux at Mobile 2012. As I am still in the process of assimilating all of my new iLearning from Mobile 2012, yesterday was the first time I had to explore the script and the possibilities of grading Google forms.

Since Google forms can be accessed and completed via mobile devices or computers, the tool is a versatile and powerful assessment piece. Wanting to test out my other new tool, Snapguide…I decided to create a Snapguide step-by-step tutorial to walk users through setting up the Flubaroo script. If videos are your learning style, (see the Flubaroo YouTube video tutorial).

How to Grade a Google Form


26 Mar 2012
Comments: 14

Integrating Infographics into the iClassroom

So TechChef4U has caught the Infographics Influenza! Being a bit of a Pinterest fanatic, I have found an easy way to support and feed my Infographics Habit. Continuing to stock pile Educational Infographics on my Pinterest board, I waited until I found an app-ortunity to share these resources with one of my teachers and create a delectable lesson. During my stint as an 8th Math tutor, I had a few of the teachers approach me about engaging math lessons that they could utilize with 8th Math after the STAAR test. I mentioned the topic of infographics and shared a few of the ones I had collected. Then I worked with one of the teachers in particular, Mrs. Simpson, to hash out the details.

Pinterest: Educational Infographics


Common Core Standards: Interpret information presented visually, orally, or quantitatively (e.g., in charts, graphs, diagrams, time lines, animations, or interactive elements on Web pages) and explain how the information contributes to an understanding of the text in which it appears”

What is an Infographic? Before we continue… let’s define and explore the topic of “infographics” further. No need to recreate the wheel… Kathy Schrock has already blazed the trail and created an amazing Vimeo video on the topic.

8 Great Infographic Stations: Teacher could choose a different infographic (from the list of 120+) for each station or have all of the students use the same infographic for each station. Infographics can be accessed from computers or mobile devices (as most are just images and not flash-based). Note: The EDU Infographic Pinterest board has been curated and reviewed mostly via a mobile phone – please preview and preselect infographics prior to utilizing the resources with your students.

  1. Station 1: List 5-10 Observations or Trends for the Infographic.
    1. This could be accomplished with Todays MeetEdmodo, or Lino It  from a mobile device or computer.
  2. Station 2: Generate 2 Truths & a Lie for the Infographic (prompt parter or other groups to determine which statements are true and which ones are lies).
    1. This could be accomplished with Todays MeetEdmodo, or Lino It  from a mobile device or computer.
    2. Todays Meet (modification): use Todays Meet activity as an exit ticket, print the transcript from Todays Meet, use as a warm-up the next day. Students would choose 4-6 statements and prove/disprove them.
  3. Station 3: Create a Word Problem based on data provided in the infographic (pass your problem to a partner or other group to solve).
    1. Word Problems could be created with a basic voice recording app or apps like Talking Tom & Ben, Puppet Pals, Sock Puppets, QR Code Beamer, Mad Lips, Comic Touch Lite, etc…
    2. Word Problems could be created with Web 2.0 tools like Make Belief Comix and Voki.
  4. Station 4: Answer Specific Questions on the Infographic (teacher could create a task or recording sheet for a specific infographic prior to that day.)
    1. Based on the trend and data given, make predictions or conclusions.
    2. Determine validity of statements.
    3. Teacher could generate multiple True/False Statements (prior to class) and have students prove/disprove them (some could require calculation).
    4. Create a Data table for one of the graphs.
    5. Calculate Central tendency for the data.
    6. Determine what the population of interest is.
    7. Locate bias in the infographic.
  5. Station 5: Determine how the information could be misused by supporting two separate arguments with the same graph, data set, or infographic.
  6. Station 6: Write a story about a person that the population describes or Create a Popplet to illustrate an individual from the population sample (similar to Twitterize).
  7. Station 7: Create a sample poll with questions that could have been asked to generate the infographic given? Then poll actual students in your classroom or at your campus and compare the data (use tools like Poll Everywhere, Edmodo, or  Google Forms – all 3 can be accessed from a mobile device and computer).
  8. Station 8: Determine data and questions for the infographic that you feel should have been included or would benefit the study.
Students Love Technology


More Info/Resources on Teaching with Infographics 

  1. Kathy Schrock: Infographics as a Creative Assessment
  2. Data Visualizations & Infographics
  3. Project 3 Infographics: Ideas for using infographics across core curriculum.
  4. Data Visualized: More on Teaching with Infographics
  5. Where the Classroom Ends: Great ideas on using infographics to teach explicit/implicit arguments and utilize animated infographics.
  6. 10 Awesome Free Tools to Make Infographics

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