21 Signs You're a 21st Century Teacher
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21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher

Written by 27 October 2010

Are you a 21st Century Teacher? Find out! PLUS if you can help me add to my list you may win a special $200 prize. Keep reading to find out how...

1. You require your students to use a variety of sources for their research projects...and they cite blogs, podcasts, and interviews they've conducted via Skype.

2. Your students work on collaborative projects...with students in Australia.

3. You give weekly class updates to parents...via your blog.

21 Signs Youre a 21st Century Teacher

4. Your students participate in class...by tweeting their questions and comments.

5. You ask your students to study and create reports on a controversial topic...and you grade their video submissions.

6. You prepare substitutes with detailed directions...via Podcasts.

7. You ask your students to do a character/historical person study...and they create mock social media profiles of their character.

8. Your students create a study guide...working together on a group wiki.

9. You share lesson plans with your teacher friends...from around the globe.

10. Your classroom budget is tight...but it doesn't matter because there are so many free resources on the web you can use.

11. You realize the importance of professional development...and you read blogs, join online communities, and tweet for self development.

12. You take your students on a field trip to the Great Wall of China...and never leave your classroom.

13. Your students share stories of their summer vacation...through an online photo repository.

14. You visit the Louvre with your students...and don't spend a dime.

15. You teach your students not to be bullies...or cyberbullies.

16. You make your students turn in their cell phones before class starts...because you plan on using them in class.

17. You require your students to summarize a recent chapter...and submit it to you via a text message.

18. You showcase your students' original work...to the world.

19. You have your morning coffee...while checking your RSS feed.

20. You are reading this.

21. You tweet this page, blog about it, "like" it, or email it to someone else...

BONUS 22: You're a member of the Teacher Learning Community...or have encouraged a teacher to join!

SPECIAL PRIZE --->  If this post receives 100 comments (within 2 weeks of post date) with additional signs of being a 21st century teacher, I will pick one person at random to receive a FREE pass to the Teacher Learning Community and a runner up to receive an "I Heart EdTech" t-shirt.  So comment now and pass it on!

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21 Signs Youre a 21st Century Teacher


  • Jeremy Haugen said:

    You encourage your students to use the right technology for the job. Sometimes the right technology is silicon, sometimes it is paper, and sometimes it is slate.

    Cindi May Reply:

    As a teacher, you choose the right tool for the job.

    Jeannie Reply:

    Yes, you must choose the right tool for the job. It is amazing how many tools teachers have when using interactive technology. Google Earth, Moodle, Skype, Blogs, etc…Just six years ago I would model lessons for teachers in the classrooms using overhead projectors, slide projectors, and white boards. Now, I use Promethean Boards,Smart Boards, Media Carts, Active Slates and I attend tech workshops monthly to keep up with the latest innvoations in teaching. No one had ever dreamed the classroom of the future would have all these tools in 1986 when I started teaching in Florida. It is simply phenomenal and makes learning exciting for kids.

    Jeannie Reply:

    Sorry for the typo. Innovations

    Beth Reply:

    Students and teachers choose together the right tool or tools for the job keeping in mind what is available in the area you live. (Rural areas have some limitations and some limitations are places on teachers and students from the technology dept of the school system.)

    Rhonda Reply:

    We must teach them the right tool for the right job – it could be high tech or low tech depending on the job.

    Lisa Reply:

    Agreed! And not just teaching people the right tool for the job…teaching them how THEY can select the right tool for the job! Make it a great weekend.

    Bobbi Capwell Reply:

    Picking the right tool is essential to help not only your students but each other. There are so many tools available to reach every learner that teaching can once again be fun.

    Janet Reply:

    You also view your students work in multiple formats and respond in the same format they use for the assignment.

    Marion Harris Reply:

    Agreed, the right tool makes all the difference. As a math teacher, the graphing calculator has allowed me to go from teaching solving equations to solving problems.

    g.toppe Reply:

    I agree that you need to use the right tool for the job, but a 21st century teacher needs to make sure they have a full functioning toolbox in order to make the choice for the right tool.

  • Kevin Pashuk said:

    Great List! Just wondering where the link to share on Twitter might be… I’ll have to do it the old way.

    Kimberly Reply:

    Nice catch Kevin! Don’t know why that was missing. I think we have fixed the problem, and thank you for the Tweet. :)

    Tracy Reply:

    You forgot Buzz!

    My kids are little! I still work with the preschool age!

    Becki Reply:

    I teach second graders, so some of this out of their realm!! Do you have a list for primary teachers? :)

    Tina Reply:

    Becky, even second graders can do this. I teach 6th, 7th, and 8th grade and we Skype with second graders at one of our other schools in the county to read books or tutor a math lesson. My students love it. I enjoy hearing my students responses after a tutoring session–they complain that those kids just don’t pay attention. My response is always “imagine that!” It is a great learning experience.

    Laurie Reply:

    To Becky,
    I teach a year 3/4 multiage class, but I have taught Prep and they just LOVE the techy side of learning. Get on to Google and search “The Super Book of Web Tools for Educators” – it has great ideas for classrooms of all ages. Also, there is a free maths and literacy program called Studyladder – free for teachers, and you can create your own classes and set tasks.

  • Cindi May said:

    23. You give your students choices on what type of project they want to do.

    Rosa Quintela Reply:

    Very True Cindy!
    I would also add that giving the children choices on the technology they want to use for their project is also important. We must give students the freedom to choose and let them be creative.

  • Melissa Rasmus said:

    This is a great list. It helped to generate ideas in my classroom since I am a tech newbie!

  • Karen Finter said:

    I really appreciate the timing on this list – I am working with a group of about 20 educators tomorrow for a staff development course entitled, “enhancing curriculum through technology”. My worry is that teachers tend to get so bogged down in the specific tools – that we lose sight of the purpose for using the tool…. I will certainly share this list with the group – I will keep you posted as to what they think! Thanks – K

    Lisa Reply:

    Karen! Congrats…your post was randomly selected to win our I Heart EdTech T-shirt. Please contact me at lgreathouse@SimpleK12.com with a mailing address I can send your prize! Thank you for reading my post and commenting.

  • Elva said:

    I truly feel that if we let our students decide which type of technology they want to use for a project, usually they come up with better ideas than I can. They are a lot more tech savvy then I am or maybe ever will be.

    Melanie Reply:

    I do the same thing with my students. Whenever I give them a task, I list a few options as to what tools they might use, but tell them that they can choose their own. Often they introduce me to new tools to add to my list.

    Peg Powell Reply:

    I like you comments about the kids teaching you. I have had to go back and pick up technology courses
    to help my students. I was fortunate
    to receice a smartboard in my classroom through a school district
    grant request. I would like to learn more about to use cell phones,
    blogs, and twitter to help students
    with research. My fifth grade students were teaching me how to use the various tools for classroom powerpoints. These were special education students teaching me. It was great them (self-esteem and self-confidence) and great for me because I was learning from them. I believe technology is the key to getting students with learning disabilities back into the classroom.

    Mattea Reply:

    I agree Melanie. I love it when I give an assignment and my students say, “Ms. Decker, can I show you through a video I create?” My answer…”Heck ya!!!! Make sure you still have all the elements I am looking for like characters, plot, setting, rising action etc…..but run with it. As a matter of fact, that might take a little extra time. Yours is due in two weeks.” If I student is willing to go the extra mile and use his/her creativity, then I am willing to go the extra mile for him or her. Teaching can be so much fun when we let our kid show us what they love.

    Ruth Reply:

    That is good to hear because with all the new tech tools out there I feel overwhelmed at times. I have always relied on my students to help me with tech problems anyway. It makes sense to have them be a part of the decision.

  • Danita Russell said:

    GREAT list! I work as an Instructional Technology Facilitator at a middle school in North Carolina. I help the teachers incorporate technology into their classroom and this list will help with ideas for them implement.

    Thanks again!

  • Cyndi Danner-Kuhn said:

    I am working with pre-service teachers, so…
    23: you use Podcasts to supplement/enhance/enrich instruction.
    24. Your students create podcasts rather than always writing a paper!!

  • Annette said:

    This is a great list and will be shared with the staff at our school. Too often we forget about the varied approaches we have available to be in the 21st Century. Thanks for the refresher!

  • Gina said:

    When you have had to deny social network friend requests of your students.

    When playing a video game counts as PE.

  • Amanda Rogers said:

    For homework, your students’create written responses to media …..by commenting on your blog post.
    Amanda Rogers recently posted..This WeekMy Profile

  • Melissa Earnest said:

    What a wonderful list! Not only did it make me think about what a 21st Century should be doing, but it also gave me ideas to share with my district’s teachers as more ways they can integrate technology into their classroom. (I also liked the addition that Cindi M. included – giving students choices.)

  • Barbara said:

    A student who recently had surgery ‘attends’ class using their webcam to view and participate in class.

  • Luann Langel said:

    Great ideas for teachers. I see this being a great way to begin some of my web 2.0 trainings with teachers to get them thinking about how they are using technology in the classroom. Thanks.

  • Margo Nygard said:

    You understand that learning isn’t something that happens only between 8:30am & 3:30pm and allow your students (and yourself) to take advantage of that. Does school have to mean in the same building with bell times?

  • Joyce Howland said:

    Love the ideas. I like to hold class discussions on an classroom only ning/social networking site like Edmodo. Kids love it!!

  • Teresa said:

    Your students collaborate with other students … globally to produce and publish a product that demonstrates understanding of curriculum concepts and teaches other students.

  • Becky Wenner said:

    Love the list and am happy to see that I work with a lot of 21st Century Teachers!! Some great ideas that I will share for sure!!

  • Tracy Brady said:

    Have your students write an answering machine message in French, record it, and email (or text) the sound file to you.

  • Susan said:

    Create projects which are real world, helps solve a current problem/issue to promote critical thinking using a variety of online resources.

  • Harry said:

    I didn’t see wflipcams mentioned. I love them! They can be used to easily create short video introductions; and put into the students hands to capture some classroom activities. Then I post them either on YouTube or in a closed class-specific Facebook Group.The students really enjoy being “movie stars”.

  • Carolyn said:

    You use your ipod touch or iphone to flip coins and roll dice for probability exercises. Use the graphing calculator app instead of pulling out the TI84. And, use your smartphone to access the web in order to share a youtube video that your district denies you access to.

  • Cathy said:

    Love these! My technology k-8 have their own twitter feed to brag to their parents, connect to other students and classrooms and @wilsontechkids love to keep their non-tech teachers in the loop. You know you are a 21st century teacher when your students like to teach technology as much as they like to learn it!

  • Debbie said:

    You leave your textbooks on the shelf because there’s so much more new and relevant information at your fingertips.

  • Gerald Aungst said:

    You have your students correct the out of date or wrong information in their textbooks by reviewing primary sources on the Internet.

    You tell your administrator about a great article you read…on a blog…that you heard about on Twitter.
    Gerald Aungst recently posted..Gifted butLackingMy Profile

  • Debbie Coats said:

    I had to smile when I read number 2 because my second graders are involved with two classes in Australia! They are epals with one, and are doing a science project with another. They love it!

    Laurie Reply:

    Can you tell me how to find schools that are willing to Skype?

    Michael Reply:

    There are quite a few initiatives going on right now to connect classrooms throughout the world.

    Here’s one place to start right now:


  • John Palomaki said:

    Your students prepare notes for a paper for your review…using Evernote.

  • Mike Soskil said:

    You understand that tweeting, plurking, and playing with your wiki are things that are acceptable in public places.

    Michael Reply:


  • marcia hersh said:

    Students create videos on various topics using Jaycut, online video editing.
    marcia hersh recently posted..21 SignsMy Profile

  • dalindg said:

    Your students blog their book reports.

  • Dean Mantz said:

    You use a video conference application for your students to collaborate with a professional in a career field that interests them.
    Dean Mantz recently posted..My del.icio.us bookmarks for October 19thMy Profile

  • Dean groom said:

    You understand the learning archetypes used in games, and can use a Nintendo DS, Xbox or Wii to teach just as well as a laptop using game based learning theory and strategies.

  • Max said:

    Everyone loves the resources you share with them… on your MathTools account, digit, reddit, twitterstream, blog, etc.

    Your students make a geometry word wall… with pictures they took on their smartphones from around the neighborhood

    Your students review their notes at home… by listening to the highlights via their LiveScribe pens

    You invite an observer to check out your class… from across the country via webcam, livescribe, flipcam, etc.

  • Debi said:

    You get chosen to attend the #NASATweetup event for the space shuttle launch. Your students will get to chat with you via Skype while following your Tweets about your experience, and get to view the launch on NASAtv all at the same time!

    See/follow @bmsscienceguy on twitter

  • JBJones said:

    While you use the web – you also teach how to rate quality of source much as your teachers to for you when you were using paper and book to collect information for your projects. What is a good source in today’s WWW?

  • Will said:

    What is a 21st century teacher anyway? What does that mean? What is the difference between that and good teaching? If you look at the list, you will Dewey and Freire written all over it. The difference is the technology of today, but the focus on engagement, self-reflection, collaboration, and communal and global outreach is the same.

    At the end of the day, good teaching is about exposing students to different people, places, ideas, and feelings and designing learning experiences that challenge students to think both critically and creatively. In so doing, students begin to raise the expectations they place upon themselves.
    Will recently posted..How a Whisper Becomes a RoarMy Profile

    Judi Haugen Reply:

    Thank you, Will, for taking some good sense to the table. Overall, I believe that education has slipped seriously while all the tech applications have made their inroads. I found the article depressing.

  • JP said:

    Greeting from New ZEaland!

    One more sign of being a 21st century teacher …

    - when you scaffold your students into becoming 21st century learners … and teachers (students creating tutorials for each other).

  • susan said:

    You created a separate teacher page on facebook just to post homework and share class information with students and parents.

  • Garrilynn said:

    A sign that shows you are a 21st Century teacher is when you have students read articles online and complete corresponding activities online. When you have your students e-mail their responses to a detailed question. It’s when your students have various user names and passwords for different technological programs. It’s when your students spend more time in one year with technology than you ever did in your entire K-12 educational experience.

  • Sarah Says said:

    These certainly are the teachers of the new century! These types of forward thinking concepts are going to do a world of good for preparing kids for real life. Bookmarking!

  • Luke Allen said:

    Essay questions have to be answered in 14o characters, or less.

  • Tamara Cox said:

    Love the list. Will share this with my faculty tomorrow at our gadget petting zoo.

  • Lisa said:

    As a Speech/Language Pathologist in the schools I use technology in therapy sessions. To measure progress in articulation therapy I have the students make power points and read the sentences/paragraphs, that they have written, into microphones to record and play back. We send these power points home so the parents can see what their child does in therapy. The power points are also sent to their teacher so they too can see what we do in therapy. I also use power points with language impaired students to work on writing stories which incorporates vocabulary, sentence structure, grammar, sequence, and attention. To dress up the power point we use clip art. I also collaborate with teachers to use Promethean Boards for whole class activities.

  • Kim said:

    What a super list! I might just have to copy and paste it as my “to do” list! Would love to be able to say I do a majority of these things routinely!

  • Josh said:

    This is a great list that should be reviewed often by teachers… I plan on sharing it with my fellow teachers in my PLN.

  • Elizabeth Broadhead said:

    Your students create posters for their book reports…on Glogster.

  • Susan said:

    From #9 on, I was in! 1 through 8 was way too advanced for me.

  • Mindi said:

    This is awesome. I have just been thinking about this very topic this week . . . a lot.

  • Stefanie said:

    Your ask your students to create their posters online, where they can include links, video, and audio.

    LaStencia Reply:

    I do this with glogster……a wonderful tech tool..:)

  • Brenda said:

    You spend your entire summer learning more ways to use technology in the classroom by taking online courses, reading resource books, and attending professional conferences…

  • Scott Duncan said:

    You get your students to show how they use technology… so other teachers can learn and be inspired.
    Scott Duncan recently posted..The bus stops hereMy Profile

  • Florence McGee said:

    You know that LEARNING is FUNdamental… and you enjoy learning right with your students.

  • Barbara Wilkins said:

    You continually seek out others and information to help you integrate appropriate technology into the curriculum.

  • Tom Whitby said:

    The average 21st Century teacher. Teach what you know. A good teacher: Delivers content to students. Grades Quizzes to guarantee students are getting it. Gives homework every day to insure kids get more stuff beyond class time.Integrates tech into education with Powerpoint lectures and Scantron multiple choice tests. Prepares the students for mandated standardized tests with six weeks of test preparation and reminds students every one of those days how important it is to get a good grade on the exam. Counts Grades, Quizzes, quarterly exams, reports and finals for the grade and even allows 5% for class participation. Attends Professional Development workshops when mandated by the district (always a great place to grade Quizzes).
    Tom Whitby recently posted..YearRound SchoolMy Profile

    Jose Popoff Reply:

    Interesting, I really hope not being in this average you mention here. :)

  • Christina said:

    You use your iPod touch lab almost every day – for dictionaries, web access, and all the apps, of course.

    You teach a blogging class!

  • LaStencia said:

    Loved this email……..It shows I’m a 21st century teacher….YEAH!

  • Jacques said:

    You have your students elaborate/create Wikipedia entries, not just find/read existing ones.

  • Jason said:

    You design assignments that are Google-proof.
    Jason recently posted..Weekly Resource Posting weeklyMy Profile

  • Karen Megay Nespoli said:

    As a teacher educator I encourage my preservice teachers to allow the students to create and collaborate using digital stories, especially in the content areas. I also encourage the use of a prezi (prezi.com) as a means to present information as an alternative to PowerPoint.

    Larrydene Reply:

    finally, someone mentioned Prezi!! (prezi.com
    This is a GREAT alternative for PowerPoint. I teach alternative ed HS and I steer students to try Prezi instead of just PowerPoint.

  • Brandi Turner said:

    Great list! I work with 6 teachers daily on how to “bump up” their everyday lessons and become 21st century teachers. They always appreciate the new ideas.

  • Judith said:

    23. You have your students create tours (with audio) of a chosen country, region, or area using Google Earth.

  • Gail Petri said:

    You have explored the millions of free online digitized primary sources available on the Library of Congress Web site http://www.loc.gov and have browsed the Teachers Page http://www.loc.gov/teachers to discover strategies and tools for using them in your classroom.

  • John Strange said:

    Here are a few possible additions to your list

    If your students are doing movie trailers for books (reports, inducements to others to read, etc.)
    If your students are producers of multimedia in addition to being consumers
    If your students focus on questions rather than answers
    If your students are constantly learning
    If your students believe it is OK to not know as long as they are trying to find the answers (if they exist)
    If your students have formed learning communities
    If your students have PLNs
    If YOU do any of the above
    If your students understand that you do not know it all and can teach you
    If your students use technology as tools, not as a subject matter
    If you use technology as a tool and do not “teach it” as a subject matter
    If you do not practice “burp=back” teaching procedures

    John Strange
    EDM310, University of South Alabama
    John Strange recently posted..Project 15My Profile

    Lisa Morowski Reply:

    I like the one about letting your students teach you. I can’t know how to use every technology, but I am willing to learn. When a student in my class asked if they could build a website using _____, I said “Sure!” and show me how to use it!

    Mark Flynn Reply:

    Excellent, Lisa. Shows the change in the relationship between the teacher and the student.

  • Annette said:

    Encourage your students to do the same as you. . .model the 21+ signs you do weekly so they will be 21st Century Students!

  • Mark Flynn said:

    Your Superintendent and Principal are also on Twitter, for their own professional development, to stay connected, and to model.

    Chris Reuter Reply:


    Are you saying that our admin staff is modeling prof development via twitter? You and Tina might be, but the others aren’t. They signed up because you told them too. How are they connected? How are they modeling personalized professional development? Who have they connected the district with? Look at their profiles, that is where the truth lys.

  • Stephanie T. said:

    From this blog, I noticed that I can be a 21st Century Teacher with the right tools. At my previous school from last year, I was able to have a classroom website featured on the school’s website(number 3). This year, our school’s tech has been looking into if that is an option. Numbers 9 and 11…I look online through various ESOL websites, since I teach ESOL, for tips and techniques.
    **I love number 20!**

    Help me become a better 21st Century Teacher SimpleK12!!

    I <3 EdTech!

  • Sarah Deringer said:

    I’m going to be a student teacher starting in January, and I like that this article because these are great ideas to use in the classroom. I hope that my supervising teacher will let me do some of these!
    Sarah Deringer recently posted..Heart…My Profile

  • Lisa Roth said:

    74. You teach students to evaluate what they see on the Internet for accuracy, reputability, and content…and cite it!

  • Hilary said:

    You find your self in your PJs, and sometimes in bed, working online. Anything from grading student work, email coworkers, doing home work for the classes you are taking, checking your Google RSS Reader for the 5th time that day, getting the news…..the list go on.

    The first thing you pack when you are not going to be at home is your lap top and if the hotel does not have free internet it is the worst trip you have ever been on.

    Kimberly Reply:


    So true – I work in my bunny slippers all the time. :)

    What’s the worst for me is when you’re at a conference (for me, I go to educational technology conferences) – and they don’t have wireless internet!

    Tracy Brady Reply:

    even for teachers doing tech presentations!!

  • Hilary said:

    You find your self in your PJs, and sometimes in bed, working online. Anything from grading student work, email coworkers, doing home work for the classes you are taking, checking your Google RSS Reader for the 5th time that day, getting the news…..the list go on.

    The first thing you pack when you are not going to be at home is your lap top and if the hotel does not have free internet it is the worst trip you have ever been on.

    Lisa Reply:

    I like your thinking…PDNPJ’s :) Blue bunny slippers for us!

  • Daniel said:

    Create a IPhone/Android app for your school that allows students/parents to choose teachers, staff, activities, clubs, ect, to promote/inform.

  • elina said:

    I like it. Only that i feel a little bit behind…Un poco x demás moderno, me thinks…

  • Michelle Baldwin said:

    You help your students learn that the world is a connected place- and you help them to discover connections through multiple content areas simultaneously (in other words, you don’t teach content in isolation– math, music, art, science, social studies, etc. are all mixed together).
    Michelle Baldwin recently posted..A Simple RequestMy Profile

  • Debbie said:

    You know your teaching in the 21st century when your students keep you up to date from their web pages.

  • kbrannock said:

    I love how simple these suggestions are, and they sound just like the everyday work of teachers. Great way to start!

  • Barb in Nebraska said:

    You’re a Catholic school teacher and you record and upload, to the wiki, your students praying.

  • Macphail Maverick TL said:

    You know you’re a 21st century teacher when you are happy you don’t know something – because chances are someone in the class is going to teach it to you in the next 10 minutes.

    Stephanie Guerrero Reply:

    I totally understand bc I am trying to become a 21st century teacher and be assured the students are some times the teachers of this process. They are hip with the new tech. and glad to show you the ins and outs why you learn with them. That is what is great about teaching, learning together.

  • Connie B. said:

    The list was very interesting. As I read it, I realized that I do more than I thought as a 21st century teacher.

  • Kelli Erwin said:

    You create an assignment for your students using Glogster EDU. The assignment glog contains video from Discovery Streaming or one you create using your webcam, images, text, web links and more. You then embed the glog into Wikispaces, SKY or other digital learning environment to share with your students. They are then able to create their project in Glogster EDU either independently or by working on a group glog which is then submitted to you and the class digitally.

  • 2 reasons not to be a 21C sheep « said:

    [...] of etc.,). Is Web2.0 doing this in classrooms? I read list post about 21 signs you’re a 21st Century teacher. Much of this is actually not about teaching at all – but about using and producing with [...]

  • Nicole said:

    You work on your team lesson plans/paperwork via Google Docs. And, your color-coded Google Calendar keeps your schedule in check and even emails you reminders for those staff meetings :)

  • kedardave said:

    You are using online mind mapping software like mywebspiration.com while you are discussing your project

  • Claire Buist said:

    I love your list and could tick of many – you have made me think through my philosophy of tweeting with the children… I also think that learning in this age includes modelling the ‘ako’ approach (everyone – including the teacher, are learners at different times). The other point I would like to suggest is that teachers need to ask the “So What?” By that I mean, so… we have learnt this, we now know this… How can I use this information to help myself or to help others. Classrooms need to have regualr times to unpack this so that it is not just regurgitation of facts and information :)
    Claire Buist recently posted..What’s the ScoopMy Profile

  • Nicole MacNeill said:

    I’ve passed this one on…I love it!

  • Melanie Matthews said:

    I like the list and can tick off a few! My problem is that I have few around me who are not afraid of what is on this list! Makes me question why I do, is it that important? The answer is in my students engagement and regular moments of me reflecting in awe of what they do when given these opportunites.
    I think Claire Buists comments about doing the ‘so what’ with your students is important and very powerful to their learning.
    Thanks for the list! I will be sharing this!
    Melanie Matthews recently posted..Camp Fun!My Profile

  • (vils)rip said:

    I like your list, even if I don’t agree that all of the items are necessary or even helpful in many educational contexts. Particularly, I doubt whether the emphasis on exploring this or that without ever leaving the classroom is so vital. I think it’s still important to actually go out and show pupils how to explore the real world – then they’ll be able to make all the more of virtual explorations.
    Still, thanks for making that list – I’ll keep a copy :)

  • Rebecca Woodcock said:

    You create online and Smartboard study games that can be used individually or as a class to reinforce concepts.

  • Roderick Silva said:

    I forwarded this link to my three best principals.

    It’s sad to think that there are teachers that will NEVER do any of this because what they “have been doing for the past 15-20 years has been working. Why change it?”

  • Rita Stebbins said:

    Looks like I am # 100!!! Loved the post and I am happy to share it with my teachers! I hope it makes them think about increasing their use of technology in the classroom!Happy Digital Citizenship day! Be a responsible Citizen and pass on to other generations the wonders of the WEB! Great Checklist!

  • Mary Sills said:

    How many of you are not at technology rich schools? How many of you are working with students whose families are not that technologically savvy? How about making a list for those of us who wish we could be doing all of these things but find that we have to start with a few things in order to get the staff, parents, and students up to speed with technology? What would you say are the essential 4 or 5 things that we should be doing with our students in elementary school? For me, it seems that the bare essentials would be wireless internet, a projector, netbooks for students, and access to discoveryeducation.com streaming videos, etc. I would really benefit from your advice – Thanks!

    John Strange Reply:

    Mary Sills: Start with blogs and commenting on blogs. This will involve using the internet and “access to discoveryeducation.com streaming videos, etc.”


    Comments for Kids Wednesdays

    Kaia and Room 10 – Why Blogs and Commenting on Blogs Are So Important


    The Tech Literate Teacher and the Schools of Tomorrow

    Infusing Technology Across the Curriculum
    John Strange recently posted..Project 15My Profile

  • Helene said:

    Love this post. I am presently studying to become an English as a second language teacher and really wnat to become a 21st century teacher. I’ll share this info with my colleagues at university.

  • Saba Khan said:

    Nce!, so any teacher ready to collaborate with grade 3 ?

    Cindy Reply:

    I am a LMS who would love to collaborate with your 3rd graders.

  • Debbie J said:

    You are a 21st century teacher when your classroom becomes paperless. Assignments are submitted online via email, google docs, or wiki and tests are taken using CPS clickers.

  • Patricia Morris said:

    Your classroom blog provides a venue for an ongoing three-way conversation between you, your students, and your students’ parents.

  • Karla said:

    Your students Skype with students down the street…because you can :D

  • Robyn Jay said:

    You negotiate with the children what they learn, when, where, how and with whom

  • Nancy White said:

    Just shared this with our 21st Century Learning Cadre and challenged them to come up with some more responses! Thanks!

  • Bruno Cesar Andrade said:

    Greetings from Rio de Janeiro!

    Well, I guess we have more than enough comments already! Congratulations!!!
    I haven’t had time to read them all and thus my comment might resemble some of them..

    23- You encourage your students to leave their textbooks at home.
    24 – You try to break the mindset of parents towards the use of technology in class
    25 – You are followed by those same parents to reassure it.
    26 – You have social media profile and add students so that you have a more interesting contact form other than just emailing.

    Great post!

    Lisa Reply:

    Bruno – I love how you added the parent component! I think that is something that can be easily forgotten, yet such a crucial component to success. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  • Stephanie Guerrero said:

    The tips were great and leave a lot for us to prepare for as I step into this changing journey I willing accept all the help I can get and I love working with the students and this is a great way to close the gap using tech they already knoe how to work with. Becoming a 21st century Teacher is very different and difficult in some ways, but we will get there together!!!!

  • Lorrie said:

    Your primary students blog on their learning, create comics to demonstrate their knowledge of science concepts, and direct their own podcasts about the learning going on in the classroom!

  • Zane Porter said:

    Great post! Thank you for sharing and supporting the push to have all classrooms 21st century classrooms.

  • Kelli said:

    You help your students increase fluency and comprehension – with and iPod.

  • Dee Thompson said:

    You write a model script for a collaborative comparison-contrast essay, having students fill in the key points(elements of fiction), then have them paraphrase or rewrite script in their own words, then record and share via podcast.

    You provide online literature text with interactive tools, have students study interactive timeline, choose a specific topic, and have them share their ‘reports’ via wiki.

    You provide websources for students to research their chosen Greek god/goddess, find graphics and organize notes in short bulleted information, and have them share their work via powerpoint.
    Dee Thompson recently posted..What is Dual CreditMy Profile

  • Kim Goss said:

    You answer any homework questions your students have on the daily assignment via Moodle/Facebook/Twitter/Webpage.

  • Haley said:

    - your students would have a difficult time telling you which class they’re in at any particular moment, because you’ve managed to integrate at least two subjects (and more) at a time.

    - you value creativity as a lifelong skill and incorporate as many artistic and creative sources of inspiration as necessary to engage ‘the other’ side of their brains.

    (sometimes 21c means more than just technology)

    anchal Reply:

    Wow! Those are great points to add to the wonderful list. :)

  • Roxanne Everhard said:

    Guess I am on my way, but still lots of work to do to be a true 21st Century Teacher

  • Dirk Mast said:

    The main challenges to make being a 21st century teacher a reality are:
    (Listed in order of priority)
    - slow, intermittent, and over controlled Internet access
    - old or outdated hardware
    - insufficient training to allow use of all resources
    - time, ability, and willingness to share best practices
    - knee jerk rejection of technology, especially social media
    - outdated school/classroom/facility design

    We’re on the way to using technology, but there is still a huge gap between opportunity and reality.

  • David Warlick said:

    You courteously, but in all seriousness, complain when you attend a conference or other professional development event, and there is no WiFi.

    “Seriously, how do you expect me to learn when there is so little access to information?”
    David Warlick recently posted..Some Reflections on Day One of the NJEA ConferenceMy Profile

    Susan Seay Reply:

    Hi David,
    Couldn’t agree more – no WiFi, what a downer!! It is hard to keep in touch (not to mention learn and discuss in real time) without up to date, 21st Century tools.
    Maybe some folks reading this will speak up, wise up, and jump up and down until every conference provides this simple access.

    Lisa Reply:

    Ironically David, with your comment about Conferences, your post was randomly selected to win the year long membership to the EdTech UNconference. Congratulations! With your membership, you will join other educators around the world learning about technology’s role in education with 500+ hours of SimpleK12′s teacher tech tutorials, user collaboration, and LIVE sessions. Please email Grace at gdunlap@SimpleK12.com to receive your redemption code and join us inside the UNconference learning community.

  • Mike said:

    Nice list

  • Tena said:

    Great list… I’m definitely tweeting this on!

  • Edie Jett said:

    You wear your “I heart EdTech” button (that you picked up at the FETC conference in Orlando) every day!

    Michael Reply:

    Our hero!! :-)

  • Michael said:

    @ David and Susan:

    Well, hmmmm… while we’re on the conference topic, why do we have to set these things up like an 18th century classroom?

    “Teacher” at the front, all of us lined up in rows, watching a “lecture.”



    See that for my rant on conferences and let me know if you agree or disagree.

  • liliana said:

    twenty …:
    you show your students youtube videos in which their rock stars, moviestars speak in interviews or to their fans.

  • lark birdsong said:

    Some of your students teach the class and teacher at times with all benefiting and delighted to have distributed knowledge!

  • Tomas said:

    When your students and their parents don’t like the idea of signing up for twitter, you use google voice and gmail to send out text messages to all your students and parents instead.

  • Bryan said:

    I can check off a few… but this is a solid ladder to set my sights on.

  • We have every reason to expect… : 2¢ Worth said:

    [...] personal learning network yesterday, I discovered this blog post from I Love EdTech — “21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher.” Written by Lisa, the October 27 article was a list of practices engaged in by teachers who [...]

  • rgriffithjr said:

    Excellent list of signs. A target and goal you have challenged me to reach for. Unfortunate that teachers in some districts will not be able to meet these requirements due to district policies, filtering, and such.

    I would add…being a 21st Century Teacher is a voluntarily attending EdTech Conferences because you desire to learn more.
    rgriffithjr recently posted..Shades of InfluenceMy Profile

  • Amanda Salt said:

    This is a great list, as it allows me to check and feel good about what we already do, as well as inspiration for future developments
    Amanda Salt recently posted..PGCE TALKMy Profile

  • anchal said:

    That’s a beautiful list! Thanks for sharing. Here’s something to add to the list:

    -You understand the affordance of each tool you use in class

    -Your students are involved in at least one project where they apply what they learn to solve real life problems

    -Your students are in charge of their own learning

    -You understand that brain development for each child is at different stages and you pay attention to the special needs of each child

  • Ken Wolfe said:

    And yet, with all this,

    you don’t allow your scholars to become dependent on the technology they’re wielding to the point that they cannot think without it.

    you teach them how to initiate thought without an ON button

    you teach them that their occasion is likely not the first time their thought’s been thought; that our current status in knowledge rests on the thousands of years of scholarship that came before (each of which was sure it was the final say)

    you teach them how to reason BY THEMSELVES

    you teach them how to communicate without a screen

    you encourage them to be able to use a pencil and paper before approaching a keyboard

    you teach them that their mind is the first and best mobile device they’ll ever have

    you teach them that original thought does not depend on an application or company sponsorship or development

    you teach them that they must not flounder for mature, problem-solving or fact-finding, or calculation without internet access

    you don’t buy into the idea that everything MUST be faster, more connected and collaborative; that, instead, their most inspired product must first start with a quiet flash of inspiration.

    you teach them to be self-sufficient, comfortable in silence and solitude, and able to reason alone.

    after all, the electrical outlet may not always be flowing.

    21st Century teaching is still just training children to think.

    “In matters of style, flow like the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.” T. Jefferson

    Marsha Reply:

    Thank you, Ken Wolfe!

    Virgil Evans Reply:

    Mr. Wolfe: Masterfully done, stated with tyle and substance. You are a man after my own heart.

  • Reuven Werber said:

    Your students collaboratively create a wikibook containing lessons on the weekly Bible readings (Torah).

  • Linda R said:

    Regardless of what tool is being used, students are enthusiastically engaged in learning, are rigorous in their intellectual curiosity, and are practical about their physical and cyber safety — neither too casual nor overly paranoid in either venue.

  • Teresa said:

    Thanks for the list! The comment additions are just as helpful – what a motivating resource!
    Teresa recently posted..Can Educational Policy Makers Stop the Evolution of CommunicationMy Profile

  • Joy Kuebler said:

    Take it all OUTSIDE! 21st Century doesn’t have to mean you never take the class outside! As a landscape architect I’m passionate about getting our youth back outside, so take the tech with you! For little ones, take pics of the worms you found in the compost and send to your class Blog along with a definition of compost. For older students track the weather forcast with a real time update of your own lab at school and compare and contrast. The possibilities are endless!

  • N. Wylie Jones said:

    I wish I had had this list and computers when I started teaching 30 years ago. I did have something more valuable than all the technology on this planet–words. I also love my subject and the kids. You can have the best of techniques, but if those students feel you don’t care for your subject or them, they won’t learn as much. I taught for 17 years in a tough inner-city school, 2 years in a country school, 1 year in a private school for girls in Edinburgh, Scotland as the only male teacher. My last years I taught in a school where each student and teacher were given a new Apple laptop to take home. Plans and grades were upgraded each week. There are a million things I loved about teaching and miss. The worst thing I saw in 30 years: teaching to state multiple-choice tests. When you teach to those tests, you leave all the children behind in a race to the bottom. Virginia SOLd out–SOL. How sad. p.s. Two years ago I brought a pacemaker/defib device to class hidden in my shirt under a sweater. I turned the lights down and told them I shouldn’t take out the device implanted into my chest. You should have seen the faces of those sixth-graders when I pulled out the pacemaker/defib and slammed it down on my desk. (I was going to use catsup, but even I thought that a bit over the top.) I passed the device around the class and they asked lots of questions. Why did the heart doctor give me a used one? He knows I use everything in my life in my classroom.

    I’ve taught in schools where administrators live to mess with and stop any creativity or attempts to make school relevent, interesting, or fun. I was left alone to teach because I kept getting awards that made my administrators look good. Administrators in many schools would not let you do half the things you have on the lists above. One bad principal can ruin learning for thousands of students.

  • Melissa Norman said:

    23- Your students create assignments and projects that benefit local businesses, for example your Keyboarding students create a menu to be used in a local restaurant, or your digital video students create advertisements for local businesses to be shown on the school TV station.

  • Loretta said:

    I’m taking a GREAT tech ed. class and I’m learning soo much…. Technology is the future

  • Glenn McMahon said:

    You’re a 21st Century teacher if you teach for the here and now with your students whether it’s 2001 or 2020.

  • Jenny Gilbert said:

    You participate in online professional development via things like blog challenges or groups that use online conferencing; you use Diigo to share useful resources with teachers and students
    Jenny Gilbert recently posted..Google Reader – the next challengeMy Profile

  • Erin Franks said:

    I love it!
    You forgot to mention that for your non-readers, you read test questions to your students via ipod.

  • Beth said:

    After reading a resource (textbook, novel, etc.) your students engage with other students around the world for discussion – and then they have a discussion with the author via Skype.

  • Beth said:

    After reading a resource (textbook, novel, etc.) your students engage with other students around the world for discussion – and they include the author of the resource in that discussion via Skype.

  • Jacque said:

    *You teach your students the letter names and sounds on the smart board. *You have your students write their letters and numbers on the smart board/pad and save them in each student’s digital portfolio to show student growth and for the teacher’s body of evidence.

  • Lynne Maynard said:

    As 21st century teachers, we use the skill that teachers from all of the ages have and do use. We find tools that will enable all of our students to access the curriculum. It is challenging today to find tools that will do that at times. We have such a variety to choose from, we need to learn how to use the tool, and then start with the basic skills, enabling students to move forward at their own pass if needed, and yet be using the same tool to help other students at a different skill level to move along as well.

    My problem is finding the time to search for the tools, and acquainting myself with them to such a degree that I am able to make the modifications necessary.

  • catherine said:

    Loved this….would love to see you that this up a level to 21st skills for the school administrator and then culminate with what counties/districts can do.

  • Cathy Swan said:

    I am a technology integration teacher in a high-tech progressive district. I used this article as a checklist to see what elements we’re missing! So thanks. I’ll pass this along to my teachers.

    Lisa Reply:

    Thanks Cathy….I hope your teachers enjoyed my article as much as you did! Thanks for sharing!!

  • John said:

    You use your document camera to project so much more than what’s on a piece of paper including yourself and your students when they are giving presentations.

  • Are you a 21st Century Teacher? | Stephenville ISD Technology said:

    [...] 28th, 2011 by sisdtech Read this list of 21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher and let me know how you [...]

  • Cammy said:

    I love integrating all the information you share into our SmartBoard Technology. I teach English as a Second Language and every visual I can use enhances their understanding.

  • Bonnie Nizamis said:

    Great list – thanks – also I’d add something about”
    If the internet is down you feel lost.

  • Wilma said:

    I am really from the “old” school (56 years teaching in the same school), but I have been a willing learner all along the way. I just want to add that I find myself mirrored in some way in more than half of the numbers in the list. As I was reading the list I was trying to figure ways I could use those niches where I don’t yet fit.

  • MediaFlo said:

    When my preschool and kindergarten classes come in to the Media Hub for a storytime.. and they are using ipod touches to “read” along as I read aloud the various Dr. Seuss books.
    MediaFlo recently posted..Florence McGee edited Really READ Across AmericaMy Profile

  • Julie said:

    The other day I was working on changing the color on an Excel bar graph and I said outloud, “I need to remember how to change the color on this part.” One of my first graders (who charts our weather in the morning) said without delay, “you just need to format the data point.” I just laughed and thought how strange that sounds coming out of a first graders little mouth :).

    Lisa Reply:

    Julie…. I love this comment thank you so much for sharing :)

  • Rhonda Lane Phillips said:

    #23 You use Google Maps for all key places studied, whether it is fiction or non-fiction.

  • janet said:

    As a teacher in the technology age … (1) send out reminders to parents via text, (2) stay in contact with students / parents via facebook or other social media, (3) have students present a book report using a powerpoint

  • Carolyn Stanley said:

    You have given us a very comprehensive list with lots of ways to help ourselves and our students transition to 21st Century learning. I honestly have to admit that I can only say “yes” to about eight items on the list, but I’m constantly trying to add more. I helped our school system obtain its own domain through Google Apps for Education, and encouraged teachers to promote student use of the collaborative tools available within our domain to help them create and complete curricular projects. I also shared with teachers how important developing a PLN can be for professional development and satisfaction in doing one’s job. I listen to my students and learn from them as well being the “teacher.” I am a life-long learner, and I try to model that every moment of every day.
    Carolyn Stanley recently posted..Hoops For Heart Fundraiser Collects 1-400 for the American Heart AssociationMy Profile

    Lisa Reply:

    Carolyn – Thanks to you (and everyone else!) for sharing your comments! I agree with you 100% on how important a PLN is! Whether its on Twitter, through a Blog, on Facebook, or even right at your school! It’s great to have you in my PLN :)

    Carolyn Stanley Reply:

    Thanks for the feedback, Lisa.
    I am a member of Unconference SimpleK12, and I find your resources, both the free ones and the ones in the subscription panel are very valuable.
    Carolyn Stanley recently posted..Hoops For Heart Fundraiser Collects 1-400 for the American Heart AssociationMy Profile

  • Nicole said:

    You have each class set up with a google (or yahoo) group so that you can comunicate with parents as well as the students.

    ***If you are using Google there are several additions you can add in…docs, calendar, website, etc.

    ***I have had my students creat their own google websites.

  • Faye Manyak said:

    This is a great list and is giving me ideas for improving. We have limited resources at this time. We are learning to use as many free places as we can. Each year parents are becoming more receptive to technology componants in their child’s learning. I would like to expose my students to students in other parts of the world, however, the journey into the 21st Century seems to be a slow one here.

  • Tania Sheko said:

    I just wrote a post and rated myself as a 21st century teacher librarian.

    Great list, and essential checklist. We should evaluate ourselves regularly.
    Tania Sheko recently posted..21 signs you’re a 21st century teacherMy Profile

  • Emmanuel Ninos said:

    I translated this fantastic list into Greek in my school library website:
    with hyperlinks of course,
    for “I love Edtech”.

    Nice to learn that so many teachers use ICT!

    teacher librarian from Athens, GREECE
    Emmanuel Ninos recently posted..Ημέρα Ελευθερίας Εγγράφων 2011My Profile

  • Tara Quilitzsch said:

    Reposting, reposting, reposting! Thanks for the great list!

    Lisa Reply:

    Thanks, Tara! Glad you liked it and will share it…and as always, we appreciate the link back! Thanks again :)

  • Holly said:

    Technology has changed my view on professional development, experiences that I can bring to my students and the way I can share my student’s accomPlishments with loved ones across the country. To think I started on a blackboard and chalk and now I can’t imagine being without a mimio, digital projector and Internet connection!

  • Sabes que eres un profesor o profesora del siglo XXI si… : Midas-Educa said:

    [...] de blog.simplek12.com Categories: Web 2.0 Clic para cancelar respuesta. Name [...]

  • Jrdeleon said:

    21st Century learners also take advantage of going in and out of virtual worlds to create simulations that can help them understand real world situations,

  • Vivienne said:

    Thanks for the great list -there are many ideas I feel I could comfortably use but would not have thought of as a non-techie type!

  • pligg.com said:

    21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher – SimpleK12…

    21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher – SimpleK12…

  • LeaAnn said:

    Instead of Learners using Wikipedia….21st Century Learners are creating a Wikipedia page!

  • 21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher said:

    [...] by Lisa of Simple K12 [...]

  • Ezequiel Cruz said:

    This is a great list to use and ensure that you are a 21st century instructor.

  • Are you a 21st Century Teacher? said:

    [...] My teammate Suzanne Whitlow (@SuzanneITRT, http://etechplace.org/whitlow) passed this along to me.  Henrico County is really pushing teachers to teach in a 21st Century way.  The questions below are copied directly from the I <3 EdTech blog at: http://blog.simplek12.com/education/21-signs-youre-a-21st-century-teacher/ [...]

  • Catina said:

    I’m an instructional technologist, and this is a very motivating blog post–tweeting now!

  • Shirl said:

    Wow! I have used some of these ideas but this provides with so many others that I haven’t used. You have given me some great ideas for next school year. I have already added some to my lesson plans. THANKS A MILLION!

  • Danita Russell said:

    Just a couple to add –

    You teach your class from home …. via Skype.

    You have more people in your PLN that you have never met in real life than those you have actually met in person.

    Your students write their own textbook using a wiki rather than read an outdated publication.
    Danita Russell recently posted..Links for 2011-05-06 deliciousMy Profile

  • Brenda Todd said:

    You blog with schools around the world and share information about learning. You have students blogging about books read for book clubs as a way to respond.

  • Mona Effler said:

    It’s almost the end of the year and your 5th graders are driving you crazy because they want to know more about Websites, apps, and other productivity formats, so you have to create and share out a virtual list of your favorite web stuff so they can keep learning over the summer and on into middle school when they aren’t with you anymore.

    Lisa Reply:

    That is awesome, Mona!! Your students sound fantastic.

  • Liz McCrodden said:

    I love this website. SimpleK12 has really opened up new opportunities.

  • Chuck Gillespie said:

    This is terrific. I love the idea of summarizing a lesson sent via text message!

  • Virginia Stewart said:

    I like! On time and on target.

  • Lynn said:

    You use Prezi at Prezi.com instead of powerpoint.

  • Ann said:

    It all really sounds overwhelming to me because i wasn’t raised with all this technology. I try to learn new things all the time and often have my students teach me.

    Wendy Strauss Reply:

    At our 1:1 school, we help each other and learn from our students.

  • Debra said:

    Some wonderful suggestions for the coming school year. Thanks from a “seasoned” teacher. Would absolutely love to win the free pass. I have so much to learn.

  • Lynn said:

    Students write a poem in Storybird and use the provided pictures to illustrate the verses/the poem.

  • Devin said:

    I wish I had seen this list a few months ago! There are some great ideas on here. I have a couple more to add to the list:

    - Your students submit their work by emailing you links to their Prezis.

    - Your students look up nutrition information on Wolfram Alpha

  • Melanie said:

    Your kindergarten students can create a digital story on their iPod Touch, including voice narration, and email a web link of their story to the teacher! I <3 EdTech!!!

  • Ivy said:

    Great list of goals for me! I would add students and parents liking our team facebook page.

  • Scott said:

    Great list!
    I would add using google docs to joint edit presentations with students form other schools and other grade levels.

  • Karin Beil said:

    You participate in professional development and/or graduate courses during the summer to fulfill your required Continuing Education Units (CEUs) without leaving home and you may even stay in your PJs or sit on your patio with a cold drink while learning.

  • Terri L said:

    You use a student survey program to track student success and learn how they use their education.

  • Maria Smith said:

    I love all the great ideas for integrating technology into the classroom and for use for parent communication.
    I teach 3rd-5th grade gifted and my students often know more than I do about available technologies. I see my job as teaching them how to select appropriate media and how to use it safely and with integrity.

  • Deb Boisvert said:

    You don’t need to make up snow days because you conduct class online from home.

  • I’m Excited to Enter the 21st Century « Math Teachers Can Write Too said:

    [...] the beginning of summer I read, “21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher” . The title of my blog post is inspired by Lisa Greathouse, @lisagreathouse on Twitter. When I read [...]

  • Sarah said:

    Learn how to be creative in using the tech tools you have to accomplish these same goals even when your school/district doesn’t have the funds to provide access to all the latest and greatest!

  • 21st century learning and teaching | Bonding through blogging said:

    [...] These twenty pointers from SimpleK12 come from one of their articles entitled ‘Are you a 21st century teacher? Find out”. I think this is a very thought provoking summary: http://blog.simplek12.com/education/21-signs-youre-a-21st-century-teacher/ [...]

  • Terrie Bethea said:

    When you initiate, create, and lead school wide projects that integrate technology across curriculums.
    Terrie Bethea recently posted..Smart RecorderMy Profile

  • Susan said:

    Ask students to use new technology that you don’t plug in! For example, the rotary cutter is a wonderful innovative piece of technology that replaces scissors.

  • Zachary Jones said:

    Love the list! Wanted to share a video we made for 21st century skills:

    ACTFL World Languages 21st Century Skills video

  • Joe Huber said:

    You know you are a 21st Century Educator when your students create a video game in an online platform that you get to play (as your own homework) to figure out what they’ve learned and in the process they’ve taught you something.

  • 21st Century Teacher « My Wired Life said:

    [...] this list of signs you’re a 21st Century Teacher — love them.  Here are my favorites: (21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher for the full list.) 7. You ask your students to do a character/historical person study…and [...]

  • 21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher – SimpleK12 « SPACS Technology Department said:

    [...] via 21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher – SimpleK12. [...]

  • Rhonda said:

    You use a flipcam to record a demonstration then import your recording to your learning management system so your students can review the demonstration later. Also is handy if a student was absent, they can watch the demonstration to see what they missed.

  • Maria Pelley said:

    Great List! I’m going to use this list as a pre assessment with my team to see what they use regularly and what they need training on! THANKS!
    Happy New (School) Year!
    Maria in CT!

  • melody said:

    Love the list! As a teacher you choose the right tool for a job.

  • John Strange said:

    An excellent list. I would also add Have a PLN and Use It
    John Strange recently posted..Your Pictures Are Now AvailableMy Profile

  • Bogdan said:

    Nowadays it is a must to be a 21st century teacher if you want to be a teacher at all.

  • norbert boruett said:

    Indeed any teacher who cares must now emabrace web 2.0 tools.It slow here in Africa, but it catching up. Web 2.0 applications via the social media as been pretty good, just one more step needs to be done- helping the to use the tools in an educational approach. Y tube is gaining respect as a useful teaching tool.

  • Donna McGovern said:

    Wow! I thought I was doing ok with keeping up on technology. I have a to learn. I think my classes are only doing about a third of the list.

  • Sheila said:

    If only more school would withdraw their policy,” Teachers must not “friend” current or former students on Facebook.

  • Meredith said:

    As a 21st Century teacher you need to keep learning and modeling the love of learning just as successful teachers of all the previous centurys did. You just may have many more options from which to choose and expose your students to. No matter what, our students need to learn to be creative and collaborative and to keep asking questions as they continue through life.

  • Gary said:


    It took me 45 minutes to scroll all the way down here to leave my comment. (kidding)

    Great post and a wonderful site. Keep up the GREAT work.


    p.s. So good to see all of the comments. 21 century teaching rocks!!!

  • Jose Popoff said:

    1. You have your students watch an interesting documentary on Discovery Channel and have them backchannel in real time on a collaboration pad.

    2. Every time you see a new software, crazy ideas on how to use them for teaching pop into your head; that´s being innovative too.
    Jose Popoff recently posted..‘Tech’ here, ‘tech’ there, ‘tech’ everywhereMy Profile

  • Ann B. said:

    23. Your students show you a great tool to accomplish the lesson objective.

  • Kathryn Gaines said:

    LOve it! I teach 2nd grade and have for 42 yrs. and do many of these thigns with my class! I hate the thought of retiring and not being able to teach with our wonderful new technologies!!

  • rainbowcat5 said:

    You flip your classroom on Moodle, and expect responses. (I teach 1st grade, so the responses come from parent email accounts.)

  • Craig Johnson said:

    Collaboration and sharing when using typically isolating computers…
    - shared documents > google presentations
    - sharing screens, demonstrating what others are doing with the same assignment via Apple Remote Desktop & projector
    - demonstrating (sometimes remotely) how to do the work, using what they are actually working on, and which tools might be affective

    - providing projected assignments [ with keynote]: allows verbal instructions, visual (immediate) printable, or sharable electronically for those who want to return to the assignment

  • Sonia said:

    you encourage students to work with one another on ‘challenge based’ learning activities so that they are provided with unlimited horizons, and all learning needs and capabilities are catered for.

  • Sonia said:

    you discretely video record students in their learning environment while they are working independently and or collaboratively, and then play back the video to them so that they can see their own work habits and behaviours. Based on this, you then have children analyse the video and create a ‘whole class rubric’ whereby they decide what ‘good learners look like.’ They then use this as a tool for self-assessment.

  • Betsy said:

    You’ve got a librarian that knows today’s libraries are not just about books anymore; they are about information literacy.

  • Kristi Sayles said:

    You are truly a 21st Century teacher when you realize that the same psychology used to grab attention to your home business websites can be utilized to grab student interest in the classroom. You must keep them engaged in what you have to offer!

  • 21 znak da ste nastavnik za 21. vek !!! « Kako nas vide ucenici said:

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  • Cindy Denny said:

    Use SMART Recorder to record your lessons, both what you are doing on the SMARTBoard and your voice, then save to CD’s or Data Sticks for students to view at home or when they have some free time. This is great for students who are absent or struggling. It can also be used in the Flipped Classroom – students watch the lesson at home for homework, then come to the classroom the next day where the teacher can help those individuals who need additional one-on-one help. If students do not have access to a computer out of school, they can watch the video in school.

  • Theresa said:

    Your textbooks have an online version so students don’t have to lug big books home.

    You link videos to your homepage so they can watch and review from home.

  • Keishla Ceaser-Jones said:


    Read #10 and #14 and then click on the link for TEACHER LEARNING COMMUNITY.

  • Karla said:

    You blog real time with your students while in bed-sick – and the students don’t see this as a 21st century innovation- it just is class…
    Karla recently posted..Time To Read NOAHZARC!My Profile

  • Stephanie said:

    You remember that no all your students have “at home” resources and allow for school time for technology and share your personal resources, modeling appropriate social interaction.

  • Jenna said:

    if you are not moving forward with the pace of our students today, you are falling behind…we are in the most incredible place to be able to guide the future generations in how best to use the tools at hand today without relying on them completely. We can utilise our position to instruct our students to achieve a healthy balance and optimise their technological tools as well as their personal interpersonal time ans space. Balance is key.

  • Rita Christie said:

    Librarians is an essential part to play when it comes to new technology. We are no longer care takers of books, but we have become technogenius. We as librarians provide an increasing role of providing information now virtually. We have to make sure information is following smoothly.

  • Christy Brossman said:

    You listen to classical music during class

  • Holly said:

    You ask your parents to contact anyone they may know who is outside of the city, county, state, or country’s limit and ask those people to send the class a postcard or email. You then follow Our World, Our Stories why using Google Earth to map the location of each post card that enters our classroom. This was a much better way to teach students about city, state, county,and country!!!
    Holly recently posted..We Won an Edublog Award!My Profile

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  • The Monday Blogger: February 13, 2012 « Elizabeth Park Professional Development Blog said:

    [...] 21 Signs You’re a 21st Century Teacher by Teacher Learner [...]

  • Edie B. said:

    These are wonderful! Even though I use a lot of technology in the classroom, I still got some new ideas!

  • Down Your Passion Like it’s the Last Bus of the Night! by @kathyperret | TeacherCast said:

    [...] recently read a blog post entitled 21 Signs you are a 21st Century Principal at Simple K12.  The post could not have come at a more perfect time. Currently I am chasing down [...]

  • Lori Harting said:

    It is hard to use technology in an inner city school when you do not have technology available for every student. I think I do the best with what I have. I like the article very much and agreed with most of it but MP3 players are a valuable source as a storage device as well as placing information and using information on it for my classes as well.

  • Laura said:

    You demonstrate a lesson using a document camera.