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Stuff that only happens in science classrooms

Published on March 29, 2015;

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Science classrooms are unique learning environments unlike any other classrooms. As a matter of fact, some things only happen in science classrooms. Here is a collection of event that happened in my own science classroom over the last school year. It's a growing list, so check back for updates.

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Back from GETCA 2015

Published on February 26, 2015;

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Report from yours truly live-tweeting and navigating the melee at GETCA 2015 (Annual Greater Edmonton Teachers' Conference).

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Pencil wielding ninjas in the classroom

Published on December 15, 2014;

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Can a pencil be more than just your average run of the mill pencil? The legendary Palomino Blackwing Pearl can take a student or teacher's writing to new heights. We have taken a batch of the Pearls for a spin and are blown away by how much writing and sketching can be transformed by this unassuming pencil.

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Look who's talking

Published on December 09, 2014;

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Dr. Pineda's Classroom is going YouTube with the release of its first screencast on the exciting topic of calculating percents. Only time will tell if this is the start of something big and shiny or just a passing fad.

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Tiny teenage animal with a bigger than life attitude

Published on November 08, 2014;

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After several weeks working on setting up habitats for new classroom animals the big day finally arrived. The newest addition to our classroom include aquatic denizens in our new aquarium and a teenage bearded dragon with lots of attitude and no table manners.

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Prepping for a new classroom tenant

Published on October 05, 2014;

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The preparations are in full swing for the arrival of our new classroom tenant..., a desert dwelling creature that will grow to an impressive size by the time it reaches adulthood.

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How to study math

Published on August 25, 2014;

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Studying math is not like studying other subjects, e.g. history or social studies. Rather it requires some very specific study habits in order to succeed at.

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Classroom pets on a mission

Published on August 16, 2014;

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Classroom pets offer many learning opportunities in the science class room. A few days ago the first group of classroom animals arrived to their new home in my new classroom ready to start their important educational and outreach mission.

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Thanks to EPL you can now have your Raspberry Pi and eat it too

Published on August 11, 2014;

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With the introduction of the take-home Raspberry Pi Starter Kit the Edmonton Public Library has outdone itself again. There seems to be no end in sight to how EPL is reinventing their role as a community library. No wonder it was awarded the Library of the Year prize.

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Hacking EV3 software to use NXT light sensor

Published on July 20, 2014;

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Got NXT sensors but running EV3 software? Here is a workaround allowing the EV3 sound sensor block to use the NXT light sensor block for the all so important black and white discrimination for line-following and sumo wrestling robots.

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FRC Team 5064 at K-Days showing of robots

Published on July 20, 2014;

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FRC Team 5064, aka Opcom Robotics, is exhibiting at K-Days this week and today I got to spend the day in the Tech Pavilion showing off awesome robots to kids and young at heart adults.

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The 100th geocache

Published on July 19, 2014;

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On this rainy day we ventured out to geocach. We ended up finding 14 geocaches, in the process breaking the 100 cache mark.

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Raspberry Pi B+: One Juicy Fruit

Published on July 18, 2014;

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Getting my hands on and starting to tinker with the new shiny Raspberry Pi B+ is a surprisingly pleasant experience with the greatest problem being having to decide which one of the endless possible projects to pursue.

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Frc Rookie Season Lessons Learned

Published on May 31, 2014;

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As the FRC 2014 competition season is wrapping up the time is ripe to reflect back on the accomplishments and lessons our FRC team, Team 5064, learned during our rookie season.

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Learning math in the 21st century

Published on May 27, 2014;

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How do we engage student in math class? While mathematics ultimately is a powerful tool helping us to understand the nature of our universe presenting math this way is likely not going to make students excited and engaged. One way of making mathematics more authentic for students is by presenting students with real world open ended problems.

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Mom, you gave me something dad never could

Published on May 11, 2014;

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On this Mother's Day we express our gratitude for the many things that our mothers have given us. There is one gift, however, often overlooked, tiny and in a multitude that every man and woman has inherit from their mothers, a gift that binds all humankind together and tells the story of our common ancestor.

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2014 FIRST Robotics Championship

Published on April 23, 2014;

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Today the 2014 FIRST Robotics Championship starts. This annual event that represents the culmination of the various FIRST programs is a celebration of science, technology, engineering, and math. Starting tonight you can follow the action live online.

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21st Century Learning, here I come!

Published on April 22, 2014;

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The 2014 FLL challenge focus on 21st Century Learning is particularly timely in light of the current debate in Alberta about the merits of 21st Century Learning vs. back-to-the basics teaching approaches.

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What teaching is about

Published on March 31, 2014;

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The Alberta Teaching Quality Standard describes the knowledge, skills and attributes required by certified teacher in Alberta. Visualizing the document as a word cloud illustrates the key concepts in this document, including the multifaceted concept of 'learning'.

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Challenges in the mathematics classroom

Published on March 18, 2014;

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Mathematics is unique in that mastery requires a thorough understanding of the subject while requiring a minimum of memorization. This poses some unique challenges to the teacher and the learner alike.

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Family Science Night

Published on March 09, 2014;

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Students and their families explore science and engineering through hands-on activities during Family Science Night at a local elementary school.

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Mathematical thinking ≠ doing mathematics

Published on February 13, 2014;

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Mathematical thinking is not the same as doing mathematics, the former is fundamentally different from the latter in that it requires a certain way of thinking to solve real world problems

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From the lowliest of worm

Published on February 12, 2014;

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February 12 is Darwin Day which marking the birthday of Charles Darwin. This is not only an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of one of the greatest scientists of all times but it is also global celebration of science and reason.

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Community-based high-school robotics

Published on February 06, 2014;

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The trials and tribulations of Opcom Robotics, a community-based robotics program in Edmonton that I help mentor, was featured today in the Edmonton Examiner.

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Teaching Science Gandhi Style

Published on July 09, 2013;

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Infusing Gandhi's notion of ahimsa into science classroom and promoting dialogue over debate will foster community building and educate the mind and the heart.

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2014 Canadian Weblog Awards winner

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