Using a Growth Mindset During Tragedy

This past weekend has been an especially hard one emotionally for me. I am speaking of the Humboldt Bronco’s bus tragedy whereby 15 people were killed as they made their way to a playoff hockey game in Saskatchewan. Both my children are in sports and we often travel to games whether by motorcoach or car. We also indirectly know some of the hockey players and two of them attended schools in the school division that I work in.

Image from Silvia Pecota Studio

This post sheds the use of a growth mindset in the face of tragedy. I find that Jack Canfield succinctly shares ways in which we can deal with disasters. This can easily be used in any environment to help anyone.

How to deal with overwhelming emotions (via Jack Canfield):

  • take a deep brief and that whatever you are experiencing this too shall pass
  • be patient with yourself
  • be patient with others
  • forgive yourself
  • use ETF tapping (video below)
  • practice gratitude


  • to make it easy for myself, I created a Google Keep note and started to type down things that I’m Grateful For… I used Canva to create the .png image. I find I like Google Keep since it is available on my smartphone, on my laptops so that if something pops up, I can quickly add via voice or text the already created note.

Now check out the ETF Tapping Therapy video below:

The ETF tapping therapy looks like something that I could possibly use more in the work that I do to support teachers who support students.




(Dis)Connected, Distracted or Addicted? Understanding the Smartphone Generation

I had the extreme pleasure to attend both the Public Evening Lecture and the Research Colloquium on this highly important topic. Please view the STORIFY of the tweets and materials for the 2018 event.

Important points from both the evening and day events:

  • we all need SLEEP, 8-10 hours depending on age
  • step away from the turned on screens one hour before bedtime
  • middle years and high school students are going out less, doing less with friends
  • society needs to reconnect with nature – go for walks, hiking, playing ball/frisbee, sit around a campfire
  • all media is educational! It’s just as important to feed the brain as it is the body. It’s the quality of the media that matters.
  • try a weekly digital sabbath with everyone in your family

Behind the Music Video: Math

Image result for OK GO band image

OK Go is an American rock band based in Los Angeles, California. The band is composed of Damian Kulash (lead vocals, guitar), Tim Nordwind (bass guitar and vocals), Dan Konopka (drums and percussion) and Andy Ross (guitar, keyboards and vocals), who joined them in 2005, replacing Andy Duncan. The band is known for its often quirky and elaborate one-take music videos. And now that have taken the time to explain how their music videos are created, what kind of things going into making them especially the mathematics behind the scenes.

Further to this, they created the explanations specifically for teachers to use them in their classrooms!

Check their website out at OKGOSandbox. Feel free to share how you have used OK Go’s video clips as either resources or creative ideas for student videos.


Behind the Music: Science and Math

As a math specialist and math teacher, I often have played music in the background as students were working on various math problems, challenges, tasks or stations. I also have an appreciation for all kinds of music. (Who doesn’t like to enlighten, relax, or energize oneself with music?) I’m also a former accordion player and studied music in my younger years (sorry no video of me playing – that was before YouTube was invented). So, combining both math and music has been an ongoing discussion among educators, neuroscientists, etc. With access to more music with online exposure from YouTube, Spotify and the like, I thought I would share a post with some of the latest resources.

Scientific American asks:

Is There a Link Between Music and Math?

while Live Science shares:

Does Music Give You Math Skills?

For me, having students experience the three different types of music that I have posted below would be an interesting experience and experiment. Asking students beforehand to not only work on their math but also to be critical of how the particular music affects their concentration and/or work habits would be an interesting EXIT TICKET.

The three music types I have chosen are: 

  • STUDY MUSIC – more of a concentration type of music

  • MOZART’s music. The term “Mozart Effect” was first coined in 1991 by Alfred Tomatis, who used Mozart’s music as the listening stimulus in his work attempting to cure a variety of disorders. The approach has since then been popularized in Don Campbell’s book, “The Mozart Effect”, which is based on an experiment suggesting that listening to Mozart temporarily boosted scores on one portion of the IQ test. Hence the idea that “listening to Mozart makes you smarter” and that if children or even babies listen to Mozart they will become more intelligent.

  • Middle Eastern influenced music

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Posted by on March 25, 2018 in Uncategorized


Get Techy w/Visuals

Visuals can be used to introduce or remember a concept. They can also be unique through student creation.

  • BitDraw is an iOS app that allows you drawing great pixel by pixel images and share them.

  • Inkscape is an Open Source vector graphics editor, with capabilities similar to Illustrator, CorelDraw, or Xara X, using the W3C standard Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) file format. (Speak with IT for an install to Windows platform.)

  • is a web-based software for making infographics and data visualizations. 

infographics editor

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Posted by on March 19, 2018 in Uncategorized


Get Techy w/Sciences and Book Creation

Science teachers in middle and high school years, get excited about these resources!

  • iBiologyopen-access videos convey the excitement of modern biology and the process by which scientific discoveries are made. Through the videos, students meet the leading scientists in biology and find out how these biologists think about scientific questions and conduct their research while getting a sense of their personalities, opinions, and perspectives. 

  • Chem Collective is a project designed and maintained by Carnegie Mellon University’s chemistry department and the National Science Digital Library. The Chem Collective website includes virtual labs for chemistry experiments, simulations, visualizations, tutorials, and automatically graded problems. Students and teachers can search the site by resource type or chemistry topic.

ChemCollective: Onine Resources for Teaching and Learning Chemistry

  • There now is a web-based version of Book Creator that works in the Chrome browser. Teachers register for free and then are able to store up to 40 books. Students are then invited to create books within the teacher library. Students could keep a Scientific journal created within Book Creator for the semester, unit and/or school year.

BioBreak PD: Become a Better Writer

edtech feb16