How I got 25 Chromebooks for my blended learning classroom

img_1585-1Last year, I was super fortunate to receive $5,000 from the CenturyLink Teachers and Technology Program. I now have a Chromebook for every student in my class that they use 40 minutes per day for an adaptive reading program and Google Classroom. Having one-to-one devices has completely revolutionized what I am able to do in my blended learning classroom.

Education grant writing is too often misunderstood. I think it’s because we hear about full-time job openings dedicated exclusively to grant writing and assume it is too hard or takes too long. But those jobs are for huge sums of money that come with all kinds of strings attached that have to be monitored. There are grants that are super accessible to teachers and are worth a couple days of work. If you have ever considered writing a grant, here are four tips to help get you started and take away some of the anxiety.

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Example schedule for elementary math station rotation model

mathWhen I decided to try blended learning last year, I started with math because that’s where I saw the greatest frustration among my students. I had been teaching lessons mostly whole group to 34 students with very different needs. During guided practice, my two super advanced students were done with the problem within seconds and read novels while I hopped between the other 32 students to address their misconceptions. (I never told those students to “read when they were done.” It was obvious they had used this tactic for years to cope with a system that isn’t built to address their advanced abilities). By the end of the practice session, my most struggling student was in tears because my classroom tour never stopped at his desk to help him.

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