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Alejandra Garza Martínez


Monterrey, Mexico



Live Curious, Go Beyond the classroom walls.


I live curious, and go beyond smart devices that help create a better learning environment in my classroom and differentiate instruction.


Areas of expertise: Collaboration Tools, LMS

    Twitter Handle: @alegarzamtz

              Website:


Teamwork = Dreamwork

posted Oct 24, 2017, 9:51 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez

Recently in 4th grade students are learning History. We’ve realized that they struggle to understand the texts we give them to learn about History. We used to teach a strategy in which we guided students to observe, gather questions about the text and pictures and then read and come up with what they learned. Students really struggled to understand and concentrate while reading, texts are really difficult. So this year, Vero Díaz searched for a different strategy to explain History. She found a better and “up to date” strategy and students were able to understand better what they read. The strategy is called LIDE (Leer-read, Interrogar-interrogate, Declarar-declare, Explorar-explore). Students made groups and had to name themselves, than make hypothesis on what they thought they will be learning, and then read a text in which they had wrong statements, so when they read the “good or real” text they will read with a purpose and find the correct answers. At the end students were able to make a paragraph of their understandings and we were amazed on the difference this strategy made. Students read with a purpose and were able to understand.

Thanks to Vero for encouraging us to change and make lessons better. It helps both students and teachers. It makes us better professionals and it helps us innovate our curriculum practices and improve students understandings.




Sharing a Geography GoogleSite with ASFM

posted Oct 3, 2016, 11:42 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez   [ updated Oct 3, 2016, 11:46 AM by Brian Hamm ]

During the past weeks, 4th graders have been working in presentations about a state in México they chose to work on. They were supposed to look for information about the state and try to convince others to visit it. They used GoogleSlides and then the 4th grade Spanish Teachers placed all their projects in a GoogleSite for all ASFM to view and comment.

Here's the link to view the site:
https://sites.google.com/a/asfm.edu.mx/geografia-de-mexico/


I contacted an 11th grade teacher Mr. Aguilar to see if some of his students could comment on the projects. 4th graders were excited! They realized that boys and girls who are 6-7 years older then them were looking at their projects and actually telling them what they could do to improve their presentations. They were really engaged and happy about it.

  

Technology has really redefined the way students learn. Before, it would take so long for other students to see different presentations and comment something about it. This was so fast and accesible that instant feedback was provided and helped younger students improve their presentations and let the ASFM community see the great projects they are doing in Spanish Class.





How to gif

posted Sep 21, 2016, 1:03 PM by Alejandra Garza Martinez   [ updated Sep 23, 2016, 7:40 AM ]

Today we had a Demo Slam in our 7am DT meeting, demos included: how to screencast and how to make a gif image.
I was interested in the gif images and throughout my day I introduced it to some of my 4th grade students who I knew will like the idea of making them and could use them for a learning purpose.
4th graders are currently working in a Geography project, which will later publish in a GoogleSite for everyone to see and comment on their work. Projects can be either GoogleSlides or videos, so they were really interested in making gif images for their slides.

Here's an example of one of my students:


Simple things can make a difference, and this can engage the visual learners and hopefully go beyond their understanding.
So thank you Diana & Doug for this Demo session!

TI Projects

posted Sep 7, 2016, 5:26 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez

I would love to collaborate/be part of Inspiring Spaces for the TI Projects. I teach Spanish class and I receive 5 groups of students per day, so the idea of having an inspiring space for students to enjoy coming to my class (not only because of me :) ) would be great. Also trying things that will work in my classroom and share it with my whole team, so other teachers can apply the ideas.

Another project I would like to be part of in E-Portfolios, I believe I need to learn more about this for my 4th graders, so working in this project will help on that and hopefully inspire/help my students more. 

DT Role

posted Aug 17, 2016, 5:14 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez   [ updated Aug 17, 2016, 5:24 AM ]

We decided that our role as DT's was summarized in 3 ideas:

-HANDS ON - get ourselves into practicing new ideas and technologies for our teams and students.

-INSTANT - learn it ourselves and apply it 'in a snap' 

-FUN - have fun during this process and be the most creative we can.


We made an interactive image (which has been difficult to insert) using thinglink.



Disrupt Learning

posted Jun 1, 2016, 5:22 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez

My takeaway from Holly Clark's video about Disrupt Learning is: MAKE LEARNING CONTAGIOUS. 
Make every group of students that come to my class eager to come and learn, spread the idea that in my class they learn in a fun and contagious way. Make my classroom a place to be and learn.
For me I need to learn and continue learning every time we plan a new unit, every new school year. 
Also I need to learn more about being flexible while grading, and not expect every student to deliver the same outputs or learnings, let them show me in their best way what they learned and let them deliver me their learnings in different ways.

My blended classroom, part II

posted May 13, 2016, 7:30 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez   [ updated May 17, 2016, 8:05 AM ]

Last week I blogged about my blended classroom and how it feels like. After blogging I decided to use technology for the end of a History Unit that was going so well.
My students were doing such a great job explaining what they learned about Mexico's Conquer that I decided for them to use ExplainEverything app so they could reflect in a more creative way about their learning.


I had great outcomes, since students that don't have great skills for drawing but they do for technology were able to deliver great videos.
Also it was a simpler way to explain to me what they really learned.
Here's an example:

IMG_0386.mp4


Next week, to go beyond text understanding, we are going to have a debate. They are going to reflect on which side they are, in favor of México's Conquer or against. 

My blended classroom

posted May 4, 2016, 5:51 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez   [ updated May 4, 2016, 5:56 AM ]

My 4th graders are learning The Conquer of America in our Social Studies unit. After learning how to read the text and using a strategy to help them understand it better they had to show me what they learned in whatever way they wanted, restriction was only a white paper, and this are the results...


Students showed me in different ways what they understood, some prefer writing, some drawing and others using diagrams. I loved it!

They are going to do this for 2 more subtitles of the Unit. So after seeing this I want to use Explain Everything app so they can show their understandings about the whole chapter in a different way.

I'm going to try it with one of my groups and see the results, I'll post some videos then...

So reflecting on my blended learning in the classroom it looks like different outcome possibilities, sounds like all my students voices and certainly feels more creative and differentiated.



Reflection on TLC Tech Tuesday

posted Apr 20, 2016, 5:21 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez   [ updated Apr 20, 2016, 5:25 AM ]

On Tuesdays at ASFM we have a couple of hours for professional growth at the end of the day. This past Tuesday it was dedicated to Blended Learning and we were asked to choose a tool to reflect on how Blended Learning was working in our teams.
I'm in the Spanish team and we divided ourselves into 2 groups, Upper Elem and Lower Elem.
I took the Upper Elem team to reflect on it and it took us some time to know what were the struggles and strengths we have had with BL. 
When we were able to do it I introduced them to the app Explain Everything. I chose this app because I didn't know about it and when I saw how it works I really liked it because it is simple and friendly. So I thought it would be great for me to learn about it and be able to introduce it to my teammates. It was great because we just took pictures that were related to what we reflected and then made the video out of it explaining it, easy, simple, done!
It is a great tool, specially for visual learners.
Here's the video we created.

YouTube Video


Connected Educator Month

posted Oct 28, 2015, 7:01 AM by Alejandra Garza Martinez

This month I wanted to increase my PLN in twitter and learn more within my community. I went into 3D printing and got to 4D printing which I found amazing.

Vídeo de YouTube


It made me think on the great possibilities our students will be having in the future. Even now their brains work in a fascinating way, imagine what they will be able to do when 4D printing is available for everyone. 

This month I also gave a History unit to my 4th graders about early settlers in América and the birth of agriculture in America. I was surprised on students reaction about agriculture connecting it to the movie "The Martian". 
The timing was perfect they were able to get the concept and think about those people 40,000 years ago and the strategies they needed to use to survive.

So my connected educators month learning was inspired by increasing my PLN and ended up increasing my amazement in student learning. Also it brought up my curiosity on my OM students and what can I do for them to help them achieve even more in this world that is moving at a very fast pace.


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