“What if…..”

As we start the school year, I always get approached by apprehensive teachers that don’t want to try anything new or take risks in their classroom. And I get it…. putting away my sunscreen and beach towel for red pens and routine is hard enough.

What if the students post something bad………”

What if I can’t see something they wrote ….that is bad….”

What if kids delete….”



Embracing every new trick, trend or technology isn’t easy for everyone. You have to go at a pace that is comfortable to you. Start with small goals that are obtainable.


Here is my response to teachers that resist trying new tools in their classroom:

What if your grading bag got lighter because it became digital?”

What if you knew walking into class who did and didn’t do their hw?”

What if you never had to give back an assignment in class and go over the feedback because it was all given live on the assignment?”

What if you never lose an assignment again because it is all stored digitally?”

What if you never have an argument about a student that ‘handed it in’ because it tracked the record of that digitally?”

What if your kids became collaborative and global learners because you provided them an easy opportunity to do so using technology?”

What if your job became just a little more efficient?”


These are just a few questions I ask myself when teachers don’t want to embrace Google Classroom or other technologies with their students.




  • Our job is getting harder with more expectations and motivation to try new things is hard. I get it.
  • However, It is our job to teach 21st century and global skills.
  • Technology can’t replace good teaching, but good teaching must embrace the ever expanding and evolving technology.
  • Last Fact: I had time to write this blog post because I finished my grading in advance because my students handed in their assignments in advance on Google Classroom.

Have a great weekend.

Back to School Data

I purposely chose that title of this post because every word of it scares teachers.

BACK TO SCHOOL. #notready #insertswearword #donottouchmysunscreen

Every teacher dreads the end of their summers, but hopefully they used their time to recharge and get ready for the next school year.  Every teacher makes a list of things they want to do differently next year or something they want to improve on. I found if I don’t act on that list during the summer then I will never reach that goal.

DATA  #calmdown #notonlyforscienceteachers

As a Science teacher, the word data gets me just as excited as finding a first edition of Romeo and Juliet for English teachers. We are entering a time where our whole job will come down to some data point. Our State Exam average is already being plotted next to our colleagues across the state. (Hope you are not the outlier)

During the school year I try to collect as much data from my students as possible. The use of Google Forms is the best way to collect and store that data.

Here is a list of non-academic ways I collect data from my students for some “Back to School Data”

First week of school:

Learning Style Data: I collect this information each year and use their individual data to help them design note and studying skills.  Click here for an older version where I collected other data such as parent’s email, etc.

***Click here for the edit mode if you want to make a copy to use on your own**

Danielson’s Framework Alignment:

  • 1a: Prerequisite material
  • 1b: Instruction that matches their need
  • 1c: diverse learners

Google Form for Pre-Assessments (SLOs): This form is pretty bland, but it serves a big purpose. My students submit their answers to our Pre-Assessment on it. Then, I run the Add-On Flubaroo and they leave class with their scores.

Danielson’s Framework:

  • 1a: Prerequisite material
  •  1b: Instruction that matches their needs
  • 1c: diverse learners
  • 3b: Using questioning and discussion techniques

Throughout the Year:

Lab Minutes TrackerScience classes have to have 1200 minutes of labs. I use this quick form to track how long each lab took. It also serves as a nice way to see how many and which labs I do from year to year.

Common Core Writing Minutes: Science has ELA Writing and Reading Standards to abide by. I like to track how many minutes of in-class writing my students partake in. I had over 10 hrs last year! Would have not known that if I didn’t track it through a Google Form.




Recap of ISTE 2015

ISTE was last week and I was there, with Google, presenting on Expeditions and Google Classroom (I got to share news about Whitelist Domains, API and Google Share Button).
During my “downtime” I ran from booth to booth trying to gather the best information out there.  I just completed my “Note sheet” which recaps what I found/saw/gathered at ISTE.
Science Teacher s: The last section of the “Note sheet” is geared towards you!IMG_2305