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Above Ground Level

 Follow along with my various adventures through the official blog of AGL Initiatives.

Glass in Class Top 10

April 8th, 2013


Like many other Glass Explorers, I’m excited to get my hands (and head) on glass. My mind is spinning with all the ways that I would like to try to use it in my teaching. Here’s a list of the first five ways that I plan to use glass to teach science.

First-Person Lab Tutorials
Using glass will allow me to make instructional videos while freeing up my hands. This means that I can create videos from a first-person point of view showing my students how to use lab equipment or perform complex procedures. In my online classes, I can even create videos of the data collection process and allow students to record the data and perform their own analysis as if they were right there.

Experiential Science Videos
I see physics everywhere I look… and with glass, my students will be able to see it too. From diffraction patterns in a small creek to standing waves on a length of chain – anytime I see an opportunity to demonstrate a science principle, I will be able to record and share it with my students. Going a step further, I hope to share my glass with some scientist friends and ask them to record some aspects of their day-to-day work.

Student-to-Student Training
Students often learn well when learning from their peers. I hope to pass the glass to my students and ask them to make first-person videos explaining content or giving helpful hints on surviving and thriving in our school. Hopefully we will be able to build a library of videos for new students ranging from “How to open your locker” all the way up to “How to get into college.”

Personal Organization and Memory Assistant
Rather than scattering Post-It notes all over my desk, or riffling through a bunch of papers to find the one page I was looking for, I’ll use glass as a personal organization and memory assistant. Taking pictures of the items I need to remember will allow me to more quickly find exactly the information I’m looking for later on.

Virtual One-on-One
In my online teaching, I intend to use glass to help students one-on-one with their school work. Through a “hangout” I will be able to show the student how I work through a problem, answering any questions or correcting any errors as we meet together virtually.

(The next five to round out the top ten will be coming soon.)


Glass-Enabled Teachers

April 3rd, 2013


Yesterday I came across an awesome list of Project Glass winners. The compiled information is definitely worth checking out, but I was most interested in using the page to locate other teachers who have been selected as Glass Explorers. A simple cntrl-f search on “teach” produced about 100 names (or twitter handles, at least) of teachers who have been selected to participate.

I started contacting folks from the list with the hashtag #TeachWithGlass in the hopes that we could begin sharing ideas and start building a community of teachers who will try to use Glass in their teaching. Early on, @arickwest embraced the idea and suggested #GlassEdExplorers – he also started a Twitter list of Glass-enabled teachers and a website ( where we can presumably share resources once we have glass in hand.

I was hoping to reach out in a similar way on Google+, but the provided list of Project Glass winners was compiled from Twitter data, so I guess we’ll have to build a community there the old fashioned way…. (you know, meeting people organically).

No matter how you slice it, it’s fun to feel like you’re at the beginning of a cool new community of innovative educators!

Update: Check out this awesome map of all Glass Explorers to find others in your area.


Build your own Glass

March 28th, 2013


For my application to Project Glass, I created the video below which shows some simple examples of how I would use glass to teach science. The problem was, to make the video, I needed to make my own (cheap) version of glass.

I thought I could share my step-by-step instructions for anyone who would like to make their own version of Google Glass instead of buying  the real thing.

Step 1: Gather the materials
I used a winter headband, some electrical tape, and my phone.


Step 2: Assemble “Frugal Glass”
Tape the phone to the headband (without covering up the camera).

Step 3: Walk around like a fool
It should be noted that driving while using frugal glass is not advisable and has already been outlawed in three states. And yes, I did actually walk around a grocery store wearing this to make my application video.


I’m a glass explorer!

March 26th, 2013


I got the news today! I was accepted to be a glass explorer! The message came via Twitter as you can see below.


For my application, I created a 15-second video and put together five pictures. I submitted them on Twitter and Google+ with the catchphrase:

“If I had glass, it would transform the way I teach science – making every moment a teachable moment.”

When I first applied, I wasn’t sure if I would fork over the money for the glass, but now – I’m definitely going for it. To justify the cost, I’ve decided to start this blog tracking my experience teaching science with Google glass.