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  • e-mail: ddthornburg@gmail.com
Books and Briefings

School Leaders 

Technological Tools for Next Generation Science Standards

Chromebooks on Steroids: Transforming Student Projects Across the Curriculum

Technological Tools for Next Generation Science Standards

Are you ready to implement the new science standards in your classroom?  This dynamic session shows several technological tools that ease the transition to virtually every aspect of the new standards.  Participants will be shown concrete strategies to create materials that span grade levels and topic areas while supporting the move to student directed projects and away from the traditional textbook-driven curriculum.  A model activity will be shown using tools like Hyperstudio and Hyperduino, among others.  Hyperduino is a special interface card that connects multimedia computer-based projects to the physical world of lights, motors, sensors and more using the Arduino board, greatly expanding the depth of student-created projects.  Participants will leave with a solid grasp of core strategies to implement the constructionist changes transforming the STEM curriculum worldwide.  If you teach science at any grade level, this session is just for you!

Duration: One hour
Audience: All grades and subjects

Chromebooks on Steroids:
Transforming Student Projects Across the Curriculum (day-long workshop)

David Thornburg, PhD

Can the face of technology-based student projects be changed ― forever ― for under $100?

You’ll hit the ground running as you master unique technological tools that work across the curriculum at most grade levels and build strong connections to the new standards without stealing time from your already busy day.  If your school uses Chromebooks, you’ll learn how to extend their use far beyond traditional Google Apps to engage students and deepen their understanding of any subject.  For example, students making projects using tri-fold presentation boards will be bringing this technology to the 21st Century for the first time by adding external sensors and output devices to combine computer-based materials with the physical world to navigate through any project the students create.  And that is just the start!

Imagine your colleagues’ reactions when they see projects from your students that will blow their socks off!  Students in other classes will be clamoring for a chance to use this approach themselves.  Parents will love interacting with their student’s projects instead of just “seeing” them.  And all of this is the direct result of the things you’ll master in this workshop.

Best of all, everything you’ll learn works exactly the same way on Macintosh and Windows computers with the Chrome browser as it does with Chromebooks.  This is truly a “learn once, use everywhere” workshop that values your time and your desire to help your students exceed expectations.

You’ll use a specially equipped Arduino computer interface card with a simple Chrome browser extension that facilitates project creation. Unlike working with the Arduino just by itself, the structure and construction of a project is straightforward. By eliminating the need for arcane programming, and piles of extra electronic parts, students remain focused on the projects themselves thus saving valuable (and all too short) classroom time. Because the software for projects resides “in the cloud,” students can continue their work outside the classroom at home or in the library – wherever they can access any computer connected to the Internet.

All special hardware (called the HyperDuino) and accessories are included in the workshop so educators can bring what they learned into the classroom the very next day. We will tailor the workshop to specific subject areas and standards (e.g., Common Core, Next Generation Science Standards, etc.) if desired.

If you have added a makerspace to your school or library, or are a teacher looking for ways for students to deepen their knowledge of any subject, run ― don’t walk ― to this workshop.  Your world is about to get better fast!

Program for the day:
  1. What is the “Arduino” and why should I care?
  2. Assembling the HyperDuino hardware
  3. Installing the needed Chrome apps
  4. Building a simple “playlist” (the software for a project)
  5. Sensing ambient light
  6. Sensing touch
  7. Lighting LED's
  8. Running motors
  9. Picking a curriculum area― from art to science, and everything in between.
  10. Project design ― “trypping” the light fantastic
  11. Gathering resources
  12. Assembling and testing the project
  13. Assessing student projects
  14. Connecting to other “maker” technologies like 3D printers
  15. Moving to the next step ― expanding your options

Duration: Full day
Audience: Teachers of all subjects, grade 3 and above, STEM teachers, Makerspace gurus, Librarians
Workshop size: 20 ― 30 depending on the number of workshop leaders.  Contact Dr. Thornburg for details.
Handouts: Full HyperDuino kit and support materials are provided for each participant.