Where Do You Get Your Ideas for Lessons and Projects?

When collaborating with teachers, I like to have a toolkit of ideas as we brainstorm ways to design lessons and assessment activities. Like authors get writer’s block, I also get “stuck” thinking of new ideas to implement with classes. The following resources are helpful to generate ideas when I am “stuck.”

Social Media

Scan Twitter for ideas by searching #hashtags. By doing so, I can scroll tweets from a variety of users to gather ideas. The following are common hashtags I use to gather ideas.

  • #presentationtools
  • #pb
  • #highschoollibraries
  • #steam
  • #designthinking
  • #makered

For specific courses, I may add a subject area hashtag like #socialstudies.

Some other social media options include:

  • Instagram: You can use the search feature to search by hashtags.
  • Pinterest: Once you start searching for ideas, Pinterest will continue to provide pins that match your search.
  • Wakelet.: This educator Pinterest-like site allows users to search bookmarks from across the system

Books

I have a stack of books that I like to browse for additional ideas.

Blogs

The following blogs help generate ideas by providing specific lesson examples or recommended educational technology tools.

  • Knowledge Quest Blog: Different librarians provide content often with lesson examples.
  • Free Technology for Teachers by Richard Byrne: Richard Byrne’s blog publishes technology tools that can easily be integrated into a lesson. He provides details about the tool and context for when it would be best to use with students.
  • Daring Librarian: Gwyneth A. Jones, a middle school librarian, shares her creativity–from lessons to tech tools to random ideas. I always learn something new from her blog.
  • Dr. Catlin Tucker’s Blog: I look forward to reading new posts from Dr. Tucker, a former English teacher now blended learning coach. The blog contains articles about different learning strategies including station rotation models.
  • Ditch That Textbook: A great blog by Matt Miller to discover how to use tech tools differently and engage learners.

Other Resources

  • Ideo Method Cards: A stack of cards with design ideas that are divided into four areas: Learn, Look, Ask, and Try. Ideas include prototypes, time-lapse videos, and guided tours.
  • IDEO.org Design Kit Travel Pack: While used mainly in the business world, this travel pack of cards can help stimulate ideas for projects.

What tools do you use to generate ideas for research and other student lessons and projects?

Author: Becca Munson



Categories: Blog Topics, Professional Development, Student Engagement/ Teaching Models

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