Lesson: Impossible - An Exploration of Educational Innovation

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Agents Florencia Henshaw and Maris Hawkins (Bridging SLA Theory and Practice)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to connect Second Language Acquisition theories with practical classroom applications. The special agents assigned to help you with this task are Florencia Henshaw and Maris Hawkins, authors of "Common Ground: Second Language Acquisition Theory Goes to the Classroom".

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ Some SLA theories that refuse to die

2️⃣ Their favorite activities to use

3️⃣ The importance of both content and purpose

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s language teaching blog.

 

If you liked this episode you might want to check out:

  • Ep. 18: Agent Rebecca Blouwolff (Teaching Language Authentically)
  • Ep. 27: Agent Laurent Porosoff (Meaningful Curriculum)
  • Ep. 72: Agent Julia Spiegelman (Challenging Language Textbooks)

Agents Zaveri, Tudisco, Scanlan, Mealey & Levin (Top Three Traits of Teachers)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to debate which three characteristics are the ingredients for a great teacher. The special agents assigned to help you with this task are Nick Zaveri, Christopher Tudisco, Jack Scanlan, William Mealey & Aviva Levin.

Prior to Edupodlooza 2022, teachers on Twitter responded to the question of what top three traits they though made a great teacher, which led to some interesting and contradicting responses! Thus, this episode involves the five participants (me, Nick from the popular news communication podcast “Can We Please Talk?”, Tudisco and Mealey from the humorous interview podcast “Unprofessional Development”, and Jack from the satirical podcast “EduChaos”) reacting to that thread, with some in-depth discussions about cultural awareness, humor, content knowledge, vulnerability, boundaries, and the concept of love for students.

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog about teaching world languages.

Agent Darcy Bakkegard (Personalized Professional Development)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to personalize your professional development to the unique needs of your teaching practice. The special agent assigned to help you with this task is Agent Darcy Bakkegard.

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ Teachers taking agency over their own professional development

2️⃣ Using the design process as a model for innovating your practice

3️⃣ Removing the barriers and hypocrisy of traditional PD

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog.

 

MINI MEET A RESOURCE: Josh Feinsilber and Jeff Osborn of Gimkit

Your mini-lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to consider a new resource: Gimkit, a game show for the classroom. The resource specialists assigned to help you with this task are Josh Feinsilber and Jeff Osborn.

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣  The origins of Gimkit: Josh’s high school project!

2️⃣  The ways Gimkit Live differentiates itself from Kahoot or Quizlet 

3️⃣  How cooperative modes, less time stress, and repetition make for impactful learning

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog for modern languages/ELL teachers.

Agent Tyler Rablin (Standards-Based Assessment)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to explore the possibilities of standards-based assessment to further student learning. The special agent assigned to help you with this task is Tyler Rablin, of Washington State.

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ His journey towards proficiency-based assessment, learning progressions, & grade conferencing

2️⃣ How to make the transition, & what to do with students who are already proficient

3️⃣ The bonus of no grading to 3am, fewer retakes, & allowing students to explore passions

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog.

MEET A RESOURCE: Kailey Lefko of Educalme

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to consider a new resource: Educalme, a school-based mindfulness app available in English and French. The resource specialist assigned to help you with this task is Kailey Lefko, teacher and co-founder.

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog for modern languages/ELL teachers.

Lesson: Impossible is proud to be one of the many amazing School Rubric podcasts.

Agent Robert Kaplinsky (#ObserveMe)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to join the global #ObserveMe movement by requesting constructive feedback from your colleagues. The special agent assigned to help you with this task is Robert Kaplinsky

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ The origins of the #ObserveMe movement

2️⃣ Why we need to rethink how we ask for feedback and why it matters

3️⃣ The role of the observer

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog for modern languages/ELL teachers.

Lesson: Impossible is proud to be one of the many amazing School Rubric podcasts.

Agent Stephanie Ferri (Holistic Fitness & Wellness)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to teach PE and health with a focus on all students’ needs. The special agent assigned to help you with this task is Stephanie Ferri.

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ Developing her student-centered, holistic, motivating, ungraded PE and wellness curriculum

2️⃣ The messy conversations that need to happen in health classes and her favorite fitness units

3️⃣ How this model could be applied outside of her private, single-sex school context

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog.

Agent Julia Spiegelman (Challenging Language Textbooks)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to critically examine how language textbooks perpetuate colonialism. The special agent assigned to help you with this task is Julia Spiegelman, a PhD Candidate at UMass Boston.

 

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ How language textbooks position students as traveling consumers

2️⃣ Confronting linguistic prescriptivism and the idea of the textbook as the objective truth

3️⃣ Using the textbook to subvert the colonial narrative

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog.

 

Agent Jessica Zeller (Ungrading Dance)

Your lesson, should you choose to accept it, is to ditch the red pen and begin ‘ungrading’. The special agent assigned to help you with this task is Jessica Zeller, a professor of dance.

In our conversation we discuss:

1️⃣ What ungrading looks like in her dance history and dance methodology classrooms

2️⃣ How ungrading creates an environment for engaged, risk-taking, and honest students

3️⃣ Getting students to do the thinking instead of teachers doing the thinking for them

 

Click here for links and resources mentioned in the episode or more information about Jessica and/or the podcast. Click here for Lesson: Impossible’s blog.

 

Lesson: Impossible is proud to be one of the many amazing School Rubric podcasts.

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