Via TeachThought

While our focus is on creating progressive teaching and learning content–in the form of ideas, strategies, models, and frameworks packaged as blog posts–there is a lot of “other” fantastic content out there to help you hone your craft as a progressive, 21st century educator.

In addition to classic forms (e.g., books), and more modern examples (e.g., twitter chats) there is also free online education–courses created for educators to engage with the kinds of resources, ideas, and even networks that can create lasting learning experiences for you as a teacher. Think teacher college, but free, on-demand, and totally optional.

So in collaboration with Class Central, TeachThought will you bring you a collection of the best free teacher courses for you to use as you will–PLCs, self-directed learning, formal certificates, and more.

Welcome to Teacher University, an ongoing effort to connect you to the best teaching tools available.

Foundations of Teaching for Learning 1: Introduction

Foundations of Teaching for Learning is a program of study primarily for people who are currently teaching but have had no formal teacher education. This course is an introductory one that considers the three domains of being a teacher: Professional Knowledge and Understanding; Professional Practice; and Professional Values, Relationships and Engagement.

Sep 1st | Coursera

Adventures in Innovative Learning Design and Technology

Explore the exciting learning technology landscape that has been created by unlimited access to information, online tools perfect for collaboration, and the rapid changing technology all around us.

Sep 2nd | Canvas.net

OpenKnowledge: Changing the global course of learning

Open source, open science, open data, open access, open education, open learning — this free, online course provides an introduction to the important concept of openness from a variety of perspectives, including education, publishing, librarianship, economics, politics, and more, and asks you to discover what it means to you.

Sep 2nd | Stanford OpenEdx

Creative Problem Solving

This course deals directly with your ability for creativity which is a critical skill in any field. It focuses on divergent thinking, the ability to develop multiple ideas and concepts to solve problems. Through a series of creativity building exercises, short lectures, and readings, learners develop both an understanding of creativity and increase their own ability.

Sep 3rd | Coursera

1368.1x: Saving Schools: History, Politics, and Policy in U.S. Education

How did a school system, once the envy of the world, stumble so that the performance in math, science, and reading of U.S. students at age 15 fell below that of students in a majority of the world’s industrialized nations? Exploring that question, we identify the personalities and historical forces—the progressives, racial desegregation, legalization and collective bargaining—that shaped and re-shaped U.S. school politics and policy.

Sep 8th | EdX

Teaching Flipped

Teaching Flipped gives university faculty an introduction to the ins and outs of teaching with a flipped, hybrid, or online MOOC-type classroom.

Sep 8th | Canvas.net

Powerful Tools for Teaching and Learning: Digital Storytelling

Learn the digital storytelling process and use the skills learned from the course to create a digital story for use in a K-12 classroom, composed of still images, audio narration, music and text.

Sep 8th | Coursera

Designing for Deeper Learning: How to Develop Performance Tasks for the Common Core

This nine-week course will focus on building educators’ capacity to use, develop, and implement curriculum-embedded performance assessments that fit local contexts. This MOOC is designed for grade 6-12 teachers working in the core disciplines of mathematics, language arts, history/social studies, and science.

Sep 8th | NovoED

The Dynamic Earth: A Course for Educators

How and why is the Earth constantly changing? How do scientists reconstruct events in Earth’s geologic history? This course explores the origin and evolution of the Earth and provides resources for educational use.

Sep 8th | Coursera

Foundations of Teaching for Learning 4: Curriculum

Curriculum is a framework for guiding teaching and learning. This course provides an opportunity for you to consider the relationship between the teacher, the learner and the curriculum.

Sep 8th | Coursera

Coaching Digital Learning | Cultivating a Culture of Change

Coaching educators to create digital learning environments is a challenging, important, and highly collaborative role. Individuals who play this role are instrumental in cultivating a digital learning culture within their school, district and/or state. This course allows you to learn along with your colleagues from other schools and districts to enhance your digital learning content knowledge and further develop coaching strategies.

Sep 15th | MOOC-ED

FLOW Education: Facilitating Learning through Outdoor Watershed Education

This course is designed for classroom teachers (grades 4-8) to learn about watersheds and outdoor education using the Chesapeake Bay watershed as an example. The course introduces engaging technologies for investigating watersheds and helps you plan and effectively implement outdoor experiences.

Sep 17th | Coursera

Improving Teacher and Student Relationships

This course will give both traditional classroom and virtual teachers resources for improving relationships and interactions with students. After reviewing research and current trends in learning and motivation theory, this course will allow teachers to think-aloud and practice with new tools within a caring community of instructors seeking to improve their classroom practices.

Sep 22nd | Canvas.net

Digital Literacies I

What’s in your digital teaching toolbox? Do you have the tools you need to reach 21st century learners? This course will introduce you to digital technologies and show you how to integrate them into your classroom/webspace. Learn how to combine pedagogy and technology to create a more effective educational experience for students.

Sep 22nd | Canvas.net

Google Ninja

This beginner-level course will help you learn how to use the basic Google programs, including email and calendaring, video conferencing and chat, spreadsheets, word processing, slide presentations, drawing, survey forms, drive storage, photo editing, blogging, and much more!

Sep 22nd | Canvas.net

Foundations of Teaching for Learning 7: Being a Professional

This course will help you to consider what is expected of you as a member of the teaching profession. You will consider ethical behavior and the need to respect the laws and regulations governing teaching.

Sep 22nd | Coursera

What future for education?

Everyone has experienced education as a learner: these experiences shape how we view and value education, and how we think it should develop in the future. In this course we critically examine a range of ideas around education: including learning, teaching and schooling. Our aim is to consider what our preferred future for education might look like

Sep 29th | Coursera

Advanced Instructional Strategies in the Virtual Classroom

Learn how to elevate your teaching by studying what some of the most successful virtual teachers are doing to propel their students forward. We will investigate what teaching strategies make the biggest impact in virtual education, connect with innovative and experienced teachers, and apply core strategies to the key areas of K-12 virtual instruction.

Sep 29th | Coursera

Exploring the Student Affairs in Higher Education Profession

Do you enjoy working with college students and looking for a career where you can make an impact in others lives? Then Student Affairs may be the field for you! This course will allow participants to learn more about the field of Student Affairs. Through seven modules, participants will explore foundations of the field, functional areas, guiding theories, professional organizations and learn how to network.

Sep 29th | CourseSites

Disciplinary Literacy for Deeper Learning

This course will explore what it means to read, write, speak, and listen for learning and creating knowledge within a discipline.

Sept 29th | MOOC-ED

Supporting English Language Learners under New Standards

This eight-week online course is designed to help teachers support English Language Learners in meeting new, rigorous standards. Specifically, the course will focus on a key practice within both the Common Core State Standards and new English Language Proficiency Standards: constructing claims supported by evidence

Oct 1st | Others

Supporting children with difficulties in reading and writing

This course is for teachers to learn why some children have so much difficulty with reading and writing and to learn more about best practice in teaching literacy to all, in light of recent scientific discoveries.

Oct 1st | Coursera

Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects

Whether you are an outstanding or a struggling student, “Learning How to Learn” will give you powerful mental tools that will help you learn more effectively in tough-to-master subjects. You will discover practical, immediately useful insights that will help you to more deeply master your studies.

Oct 3rd | Coursera

Coaching Teachers: Promoting Changes that Stick

Learn and practice strategies for coaching teachers to make meaningful, long-lasting improvements in their instruction.

Oct 3rd | Coursera

Teachers Without Borders: Educating Girls

This course focuses on the continued education of teachers as multipliers of change. “Educating Girls” connects scholarship, classroom practice, and service. Consider this: The film “Girl Rising” opens with Sokha, a Cambodian girl in a golden costume, dancing in slow motion. Suddenly, the camera shifts to her life before she was given the chance to get an education, a life picking trash. How did she get from the dump to dance?

Oct 6th | Canvas.net

An Introduction to Evidence-Based Undergraduate STEM Teaching

This seven-week course explores effective teaching strategies for college or university STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) classrooms

Oct 6th | Coursera

Five Habits of Highly Creative Teachers

This course is designed to encourage educators to develop new creative habits that foster personal learning networks, content creation, and innovative learning practices that embrace curiosity, failure and reflection. Each week a new creative habit is explored through the examination and understanding of one’s own relationship to creativity.

Oct 7th | Canvas.net

11.132x: Design and Development of Educational Technology

This project-based course explores educational technologies and the theories underlying their development through interviews with experts in the field.

Oct 8th | EdX

Foundations of Teaching for Learning 2: Being a Teacher

How we teach has its foundation in how we were taught and how we learned. This course provides an opportunity for you to reflect on your personal and professional development as a teacher. Through reflection and portfolio development you will enhance your knowledge and understanding of how to promote learning.

Oct 20th | Coursera

Common Core in Action: Literacy in the Content Areas- Exploring Literacy Design Collaborative Template Tasks

Learn how to apply some of the tools from the Literacy Design Collaborative to incorporate Common Core literacy standards into your content area. In this course you will explore Literacy Design Collaborative Resources, create a teaching task, and develop a plan to use the task within classroom instruction.

Oct 20th | Coursera

Common Core in Action: Math Classroom Challenges- Using Formative Assessment to Guide Instruction

This course offers participants an opportunity to engage in a community of learners using an inquiry cycle focusing on math formative assessments as a strategy for implementing CCSS in math. It focuses on the implementation of a Classroom Challenge: a 1 – 2 day lesson developed by the Mathematics Assessment Project (MAP) based on formative assessment and the CCSSM.

Oct 20th | Coursera

Getting Started with MinecraftEDU

Minecraft has endless educational possibilities, but it can be really overwhelming to begin using it as an educational tool. This course is meant for new users of MinecraftEdu who would like to set up their server and plan their first two lessons using Minecraft.

Oct 20th | Canvas.net

Foundations of Teaching for Learning 5: Planning for Teaching and Learning

This course will help you consider how to develop appropriate learning goals for individual and groups of students. You will learn how to plan learning activities to engage your students in ways that will achieve these goals.

Oct 27th | Coursera

Get Organized: How to be a Together Teacher

Returning graded homework, responding to parents, attending grade-level meetings, writing letters of recommendation, eating your own lunch… In an environment where even using the bathroom requires advanced planning, organization is key. This course provides insights, templates and exercises designed to get every teacher organized.

Coursera

Academic Integrity: Values, Skills, Action

This course will explore academic integrity and how you can demonstrate it in your work, study and research at university.

Nov 10th | FutureLearn

Performance Assessment in the Virtual Classroom

Performance and Assessment in the Virtual Classroom explores the myths and challenges of assessing performance virtually. Topics include effective measures of assessing students, compliance issues, feedback models for students, online gradebook functions, and data analysis.

Nov 10th | Coursera

Foundations of Teaching for Learning 8: Developing Relationships

As a teacher you will need to establish appropriate relationships with many different groups within the school and the wider community. It is important for you to understand how critical these relationships are to student learning.

Nov 10th | Coursera

Tinker, Make & Learn

Making can be a powerful catalyst for building skills and understanding across a wide range of subjects. Intended for educators from all disciplines, Tinker, Make & Learn builds upon the experiential approach to learning through a blended model. It delves into activity-based strategies that will help empower participants in their own learning.

Dec 15th | Canvas.net

This article appeared on TeachThought on September 15 2014 and was researched and written by the TeachThought staff.

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