Create 3 – Open Educational Resources



Open Educational Resources


Creative Commons Licences 


This post discussing is created as a part of a Georgia Online Professional Learning course.


Wikipedia is one of the first online entities that proposed open learning concept

Once upon a time, all educational material and resources were tangible- books, microfilms, magazines and the reference librarian.  It was common sight to see the educators standing around a copying machine and lugging heavy textbooks for lesson planning.  Now a days, information is available online, at a click of a button.  We are no longer bound to books and paper copies of facsimiles of magazines to compile resources.  With privilege of information at the fingertips comes the right to educate ourselves to fair use of material. When we use the information that is not owned by us, we need to give proper credit and attribution.  It is a good idea to provide a link to original post or source as well. Not sure how to do it?  Help is closer than you think.  Go ahead and review the information The Edublogger has on Fair use of  Images, copyright and Creative Commons

Not enough time to review the edublogger article? 

That is fine.  Here is a  quick overview of CC licences from  Creative Commons website





You ask: What is an Open Educational Resource? 

Open Educational Resources is any educational and learning material that is:

  • Educational material or resources that is “open” = free to use as opposed to commercial / paid
  • In public domain or introduced with an Open licence
  • Material that can be used freely, adopted or modified and shared again
  • Some Example of OER: MOOCKhan Academy, CK-12, Harvard Open Learning Initiative



Open source material does not mean, we can use it without giving proper credit or attribution. 

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Create 2 – Web Tools for Differentiation of Teacher Instruction

This post is created as a part of Georgia Professional Learning course.  Creating differentiated instruction involves using best tools to make learning fun. We will discuss Desmos, a web 2.0 graphing calculator to facilitate student learning about marvelous mathematics.


Not to give away my age, but I learned to graph with paper and pencil. Graphic calculators were not out till I graduated from the college.  Graphing was tedious and time consuming. Teachers pulled their proverbial hair out when the students failed to grasp graphing function.  Then came graphing calculators and sanity everywhere was restored. Desmos graphing calculator with online presence and apps for android and iPad app is another example of technology making life interesting.




Desmos is a fantastic Online Graphic Calculator

I am using Desmos to differentiate instruction in my Algebra 2 classroom. The ease of use and accessibility of Desmos as on the go instructional tool allows me to reach my students regardless of their comfort with mathematics.  With minimum fuss, the students can observe the rules of transformation in action while working at their own speed and I can assist them as needed without hurting their dignity.  


Let me share two screenshots from the concept Transforming Basic functions.

Parent Graph: y = X^2

Manipulating the graphs, no problem!  Having fun?  Definitely.


Parent Graph: y=x^3

Transformation of y= X^3 using Desmos , an online graphing calculator

As you can see, graphing is no longer boring task but can be a fun learn used in exit tickets, team competitions and real understanding of concepts.  Students can continue creating graphs while waiting for lunch to be over or little brother to come our of the school, they may go to Red Bubble and make $$ by selling their creations.  Students look forward to the summative assessment Desmos Art Project for Graphing Functions,  to show their prowess and earn bragging rights.  I can truly says that this tool has made math enjoyable for my kids and me.  I still can remember the day when my 14 year old student came early to class so he can show me the cool logo he created and share his knowledge with the class!  I was in teacher’s heaven that day. 

Create 2 – Web Tools for Differentiation of Student Assessment

Content, Process and Product can be differentiated online

This post is created as part of Georgia Online Professional Learning  course. Here, I will share an artifact to demonstrate how a web 2.0 tool can be used for differentiated instruction and assessment.

The content differentiation requires  educators to be proficient in the subject they are teaching and  know their students  to device the content geared toward the student’s abilities and interests. Process differentiation can be achieved easily with preplanning and organization. Product differentiation is the easiest of all three of them.   


By providing clear, detailed guidelines that the students must meet & concepts that they must illustrate to show their understanding of the content being studied, an instructor can differentiate the product that the students will look forward to producing with pride. 


Collaboration allows us to share and use tried and true artifacts from our colleagues rather than reinventing the wheels. During web walking, I came across Amy McNabb‘s post about  Desmos Graph Art Project which she has created and used in her class for differentiated summative assessment  The students are asked to show their content mastery of graphing basic functions by creating a picture using Desmos, an online graphing calculator.  Along with clear guidelines and a rubric, Amy has provided an example of the product to assist her students further.  She have used Google Form as an exit ticket to gauge student reaction about the project.  We can see that, the students find the project fun, challenging and have responded with gusto.  Please click on the link for the original blog post from Amy where she shows the some examples of art her students created using ingenuity and Desmos, a web 2.0 tool. What an excellent way to achieve differentiated assessment while inviting students to have fun.  Thank you, Amy McNabb, the Mathematician for sharing the project on your blog.


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Create 2 – Web Tools

For this post we are tasked with exploring five instructional web tools that offer variety of opportunities for the learners. We also need to answer following questions:

What is the intended use for each tool?

How might you use each tool in online teaching?

How might a student use the tool?

Is there a cost associated with the tool



There is a plethora of web 2.0 tools available to an online educator.  Google Classroom is a learning management system in itself and allows an educator paperless instruction, grading and home-school collaboration. I will share six of the web tools I have used recently.





  • Twitter is a free social media micro blogging app that can be used for instruction, networking and professional development
  • Twitter for Teachers, a blog post by Kathy Schrock explains how an educator can use twitter in her classroom to maximize learning. To learn more, please refer to Stephanie Norman’s post on same topic. 






  •  A no cost, copyright free images and videos for use in post, presentations & lessons and student assignments

Use of Safesearch filter blocks out violent and explicit images

All contents are released under Creative Commons CC0, which makes them safe to use without asking for permission or giving credit to the artist – even for commercial purposes.






  • Prezi has a Zooming interface compared to a linear one in PowerPoint
  • Cloud based = mobile tool =  on the go access
  • Price varies from free with upgrade possibilities and educator discounts
  • An educator can use Prezi for delivering instruction with an oomph and as an assessment tool.
  • Students can use this web tool for collaboration and showing their content mastery just as I have done Show & Tell section of this post




Remind App

  • A messaging app with very good privacy settings that allows files and media attachment send with real time text messages to individual, group or selected recipients
  • Free for an individual educator, available to purchase for whole school use Educators can use this app for sending announcements, assignments and important information home.
  • Students & Parents can use Remind  for keeping things on track.





Coogle is one of the content mapping and  Mindmap tools Coogle_Mindmap Toolwhere we can easily drag-and-drop  icons & images from desktop to diagram

  • Cost:  Individual account: 3 private & unlimited public diagram free, with ability to upgrade,Organization account  for $5-8 /month; Schools can get in touch with customer service to set up bulk accounts that can work with school firewalls and directory authentication.
  • To see it in action, please click on my post  Create 1 – Content Map



  • Free, bookmarking tool that can be accessed across the platform 
  • Easy Sharing, Collaboration & following other educators 
  • Students can use this bookmarking tool for easy access to instruction & creating projects.
  • I have  bookmarked some of the web 2.0 tools & created the Symbaloo here.








Create 1 – Appearance

Discovery Education
Image: Discovery Education


You are in beautiful New York City for a conference and  looking forward to listening to the dynamic Rita F. Pierson this afternoon. You decide to soak up the city’s cultural offerings during the lunch.  Would you rather visit a cluttered, dilapidated and shabby museum or an aesthetically pleasing, visually stimulating Guggenheim?  The rule about appearance, functionality and presence is true for websites, buildings and people. 


 Standard Fonts and color choice aided with Arrangement of material including text poppers, White Space, videos, visuals and isolation of some text with text images will enhance the website.


When exploring instructional websites, we can see that some of them adhere to  sound design ideals while others ignore them relying on content alone.  Here is a representative samples of each:


Cluttered and Uninviting Instructional Websites:


MIT Open Course Website



MIT Open Courseware

Carnegie Melon Open Learning Initiative

Film and Technical Institute of India


These websites show poor color choice, seem cluttered and have little white place. The poor design elements may make it harder for visually impaired readers to get best out of the content. The design may  overwhelm the senses and put off readers to dig deeper despite the excellent content they provide. 


Instructional Websites with Sound Designs Elements:



GA Dept of Education Website
                                                                 Image: Georgia Dept of Education



Khan Academy

Georgia Standards   

American Association of School Librarians

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

Princeton University

These websites have pleasant text design, fonts and visuals. Balance of text, white space and sound design elements invites readers to explore these sites further.  




Create 1- Content Map

Content mapping is a useful skill for an online educator.  The educator can use it for outlining the concept being studied for helping with creating a lesson plan and timeline of how they may deliver the content.  There are many online tools available for content mapping.  After experimenting with  and Mindmap tools reviewed by Saikat Basu, I choose to create my content map for Graphing a function using Coggle.  This content map shows the topics I will cover for the unit; it does not show the time line or assessment and participation tools I will use to gauge students’ content mastery.  My next step in lesson planning will be reviewing the resources, reflection on instructions from last time I taught Graphing function, assembling assessment and collaborating with my team for delivery of the content.


Graphing Functions: Content Map

Create 1- Time Management

Georgia Virtual Professional LearningThis post is one in a series for a MOOC.  You can find similar posts by searching the category Georgia Online Professional Learning or searching for hashtag #eteachertool for more about this MOOC.  

Here, we will talk about five time management tools, their use and relevance to the online world.  We will look at how each of these tools is used and if it is used for personal or professional use.


 What is Time Management ?

Why should an educator care about it.


Until We can Manage time, We can manage nothing else. - Peter Druker

Time turners and science fiction tales aside, regardless of one’s’ station in life, each person has only 24 hours in a day.  I am no exception to this fact of the life. Time management allows an educator proper work-life balance. There are many online time management tools available: some are specific to the educators while others are available to any interested digital citizen. These tools, when used efficiently will allow an educator to maximize their time while planning lessons, establishing schedule and collaborating with colleagues to deliver the content and become a proficient educator.  The tools I am sharing below are used by me in both professional and personal scope.


Google Calendar:

Google Calendar Logo

Google Calendar is master calendar; I have a school calendar and personal one aggregated in a single calendar by using it.  I can share it with others and others can share their Google Calendars with me which makes creating an event which fits everyone’s schedule an easy job. It is integrated with Gmail.  As it is available on anywhere internet is available, I can use it on different platform including on my phone.  I can use it for task list, appointments and get reminders to keep me on track. It has a search feature (Not a big surprise as the Google Calendar is a Google product after all).  


Daily Planner:

Daily Progess

Time Management- 7 minutes a time

With Google Calendar, I prefer to use a daily planner for creating lists and checking them off  to keep everything on track.  After using many different planners over the years, I came across a complete time management system developed by Allyson Lewis, 7 Minute Life Daily Planner. Though I use the notebook version, it is also available as an online device.  This planner focuses me to prioritize my goals, keeps me connected with my stakeholders and energizes me to take care of my health. Which other planner on market has a space for tasks you need to accomplish today,  list of emails you need to send, the expense tracking, the calls you need to make and daily appointments?  It fits both my personal and professional needs.  I heartily recommend this planner to everyone. 

Note taking & Content Management:

Not long ago, you would have found me lugging a rolling cart to and from the school each day.  Not any more. Now I use Dropbox. 


Dropbox LogoWith Dropbox I can share large documents securely which is not always possible via  email. The basic Dropbox account gives me 2 GB space for free with choice of update for a monthly or yearly fee.  I can sync files across the devices giving me freedom to work on them from home or work without worrying about saving documents and bringing them from one place to another.  Finally, with Dropbox, I can shared folders and links with colleagues and collaborate with them in real time.  As a mom, an educator & a learner, Dropbox is an essential streamlining tool.   You may also wish to consider OneNote and Evernote- other good tools that is used to take notes, clip website material and carry them across the windows and Mac platform on different devices.  ‘s October 2017 Computer World review may help you to decide   if Evernorte or OneNote is a better choice for you.



Staying connected with Parents on Short Notice:

Parents are integral part of success of my students. Using Google for Classroom allows me to stay in touch with my parents.  Access to Skyward,  E mails and newsletters are good But what if we are on a field trip? What about if we are coaching a team or planning an event? I recommend Remind app for classroom use and First Touch app for coaches.  Both remind and First Touch requires parents/ students to receive a class-code to activate the account.  Both allows for use of phone for contact between the educator & 

Remind App is used more for classroom use. It is safer as Personal contact information stays private. Phone numbers aren’t exchanged between teachers, students, and parents. Students below 13 years are required to use their parent’s contact information rather than their own. 

Remind App
Image Source: Remind

Sending real time text messages to phone of an individual, selected people or everyone in the group 

Allow the educator to see who has or has not read the messages 

Send attachments with the messages & Receive replies from the group.



First Touch App for Teams
Image Source: First Touch


First Touch is more geared toward Teams.  Team or organization must be registered for First Touch.  The app protects privacy because only coaches, players and family members have login access. It may be less secure than Remind App. Lets look at its features at a glance.  



First Touch App at a Glance
Images Source: First Touch