This week, I received a comment to my blog asking: What do you feel is the biggest difference between playlists and choice boards? Would you say a playlist is more data-driven and a choice board gives more variety in learning modalities? These are great questions! I have heard teachers use these terms interchangeably, yet there […]
Student agency, or a students’ ability to make key decisions about their learning experience, is an essential aspect of blended learning. Student agency requires that we design our lessons to offer students meaningful choices. These choices can help us universally design learning experiences that strive to remove barriers and invite students to decide how to […]
On Saturday, I wrote a blog sharing an offline choice board teachers can use to blend offline activities into their online classes. On Twitter, Barbara McInnes suggested teachers add a wellness activity to their offline choice boards. I loved her suggestion and immediately started working on a choice board dedicated to health and wellness activities. […]
Schools in California will not reopen this year. Teachers are scrambling to move their offline courses online to ensure that students continue learning for the remainder of the school year. Understandably, the focus is on online learning as that is a new and unfamiliar learning landscape for a lot of educators. I am fielding questions […]
My children love “would you rather” questions. Would you rather go to the beach or the snow? Would you rather eat a cookie or a brownie? Would you rather watch a movie or read a book? They enjoy being presented with two options and getting to choose one. In a workshop last week, I was […]

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This week I had the pleasure of training a group of elementary teachers on blended learning strategies. As a group, they wanted to focus on: Differentiation Student choice Assessment One of the strategies we discussed with the potential to weave these three areas of focus together is a choice board. There are several different approaches to designing a […]
How does a teacher’s relationship with their students impact their energy levels or exhaustion? How can a teacher build strong relationships with their students to make this work more enjoyable and rewarding? When I began my research study on teacher engagement in blended learning environments, I was drawn to Klassen, Yerdelen, and Durksen’s (2013) definition […]
While coaching teachers this month, several expressed a desire to include review and practice activities in their station rotation lessons to help students prepare for end-of-the-semester assessments. Helping students review for an exam often takes the form of a study guide or review game. These traditional approaches to review are problematic on three fronts. The […]
As I reflect on the last year, it’s my books that have provided a sense of freedom and adventure while I’ve been in quarantine and felt socially isolated. My books have transported me through time and space in a year when I have barely left my home. They have introduced me to new people and […]
In the last ten months, teachers have had to design and facilitate learning for various teaching and learning landscapes. Teachers in states hit hard by the pandemic, like my home state of California, have been online since March. Some teachers are on a hybrid schedule seeing students a couple of days each week. Others are […]
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework that is based on a scientific understanding of how people learn. The goal of UDL is to design “barrier-free, instructionally rich learning environments and lessons that provide access to all students” (Nelson, 2). The UDL framework helps educators think about and design learning experiences that allow all […]
A few weeks ago, I published a blog titled “8 Ideas Designed to Engage Students In Active Learning Online.” I had several elementary teachers request that I work on a similar blog focused on younger learners. Below are ten strategies I hope will help elementary teachers to engage their young learners online. #1 Create Virtual […]