In today’s blog post, I’m excited to take a spin on the traditional “top episodes of the year” by featuring a few of my favorite EdTech tips shared by my Easy EdTech Podcast guests in 2021. Even if you stumble upon this blog post in 2025, these tips are pretty timeless and worthy of your consideration no matter what time of year it is.
Before we jump into my favorite tips from my podcast guests this year, I thought I’d share a little bit of background as we’re approaching the three year anniversary of the Easy EdTech Podcast. I cannot believe that it has been three years already! The only reason why that seems even a little bit plausible is that I feel a bit more in the groove than when I first started.
Starting the Easy EdTech Podcast
When I started the podcast I would not have thought that an interview roundup would ever be on the schedule. Mostly because I didn’t have any interviews when I started the podcast, it was just me with solo episodes, featuring one big topic or a handful of tips. Now this format wasn’t because I wanted to avoid EdTech experts, if you’ve followed me for a while you know I spend a lot of time at conferences chatting with friends about EdTech.
But let me say, loud and clear, that I am so happy I started including interviews on the podcast. One reason is that I learn so much and often find educators in spaces like Twitter, Instagram and Clubhouse that I send a quick message to and then they join me for a recording. I’ve also loved including so many interviews this year because there are lots of people I haven’t gotten to see as frequently with so many conferences going virtual which is another reason why you might hear me share how long I’ve known someone when introducing them at the beginning of an episode.
EdTech Tips from Podcast Guests
This blog post is a modified version of the transcript to a past episode of the Easy EdTech Podcast. It’s a little more conversational than how I normally write — because this is taken from the transcript of a favorite podcast episode. Rather listen than read? Click here or press play above.
Let’s jump into a handful of great tips from favorite EdTech experts who joined me on the podcast this year!
Listen to: New Ways To Use Jamboard with Torie Marquez –Easy EdTech Podcast 099
Torie Marquez, follow her on Twitter
When I spoke to Torie about Jamboard I was excited to approach it from a different angle. We talked about using Jamboard during professional learning experiences and I loved her ideas for introducing a collaborative activity that teachers could take back to their classroom. As someone who has led oodles of webinars the past few years, Jamboard has been a go-to tool, too and it was great hearing Torie share her experience.
Listen to: 10 Little-Known Google-Friendly Tools You Need to Know About with Eric Curts – Easy EdTech Podcast 115
Eric Curts, author of Control Alt Achieve: Rebooting Your Classroom with Creative Google Projects
Like many people, including this podcast guest, I love all things Google. Eric shared a bunch of tools that might be familiar to you or might be totally new. One of my favorites that he shared on this episode was Google Arts & Culture and if you’ve joined me for a webinar this year, you’ve probably heard me talk about this website and app, too. I typically show off the interactive panoramas on this website, but the tip that Eric shared was to check out the different tools inspired by all of the artwork that Google has uploaded into the platform. This includes the Art Pallet tool on their platform.
Listen to: What Does a Regional Tech Coordinator Do? with Dr. Sarah Thomas – Easy EdTech Podcast 136
Dr. Sarah Thomas, author of Closing the Gap: Digital Equity Strategies for Teacher Prep Programs
Dr. Sarah Thomas and I covered a lot of topics in our conversation around her role as a regional tech coordinator earlier this year. One of the tips she shared that I want to highlight, is the power of using social media to stay connected and grow your network. At the beginning of the episode I mentioned how a few of the guests on the podcast this year were educators who I saw sharing great things on social media. Sarah emphasized how her social media-fueled PLN has made a big impact on her professional life.
Listen to: What You Need to Know About EdTech in the Library with K.C. Boyd – Easy EdTech Podcast 117
K.C. Boyd, find K.C.’s website here
As we spoke about introducing new tools, using digital tools to differentiate reading experiences for students, K.C. shared “give yourself grace, give yourself time to make mistakes.” When talking about EdTech on this podcast we often look at a range of strategies and tech tools and I love this tip from K.C. and wanted to make sure it was included in this list. This school year especially, it is crucial that we remember to give ourselves grace when trying something new or revisiting an idea or strategy for the first time in a while.
Listen to: How to Make Sure Your Next Project is Authentic with Kristin Harrington – Easy EdTech Podcast 127
Kristin Harrington, author of Adventures in Authentic Learning: 21 Step-by-Step Projects From an Edtech Coach
During our conversation, Kristin shared a list of tips for educators, including the advice to start with a low-stakes project. If you plan to introduce a larger project with students during the school year, Kristin recommended starting small so students and teachers can find success with a lower-stakes activity. Kristin also shared ideas around developing a project mindset.
Listen to: How Flipping Your Classroom Can Save You Time with Mandy Rice – Easy EdTech Podcast 125
Mandy Rice, see Mandy’s website right here
The big tip I want to share from my conversation with Mandy earlier this year isn’t specific to flipping your classroom, but applies to so many things you might try to tackle in EdTech. Mandy suggested that when you try out the flipped classroom model for the first time you start with just one class or one course. So the big tip or takeaway from this episode is when you start a new initiative, make it manageable and don’t bite off too much at once.
Listen to: What Does Digital Citizenship Really Mean? With Dr. Kristen Mattson — Easy EdTech Podcast 105
Dr. Kristen Mattson, author of Digital Citizenship in Action: Empowering Students to Engage in Online Communities
I spoke with Kristen about how to use “would you rather” prompts to spark a discussion about digital citizenship. I loved the ideas Kristen shared from her book during this episode. We also talked about websites full of resources that can help teachers better understand the role digital citizenship plays in their classrooms.
Listen to: Useful Tips for Finding Podcasts to Enhance Content with Jeff Glade – Easy EdTech Podcast 128
Jeff Glade, check out Jeff’s website to learn more
In this podcast episode, Jeff shares so many gems to help you make the most of podcasts in your classroom. Jeff shared lots of great recommendations in case you’ve never used podcasts with your students before. One of the big tips from this episode was to identify your instructional purpose and incorporate supporting activities like using graphic organizers. In addition to using graphic organizers, Jeff also mentioned the benefits of sketch noting and giving students a task that supports their listening practice.
A few of these expert EdTech tips were first featured in this blog post for ISTE, where I spotlighted a few ISTE authors who joined me on the podcast. Now I couldn’t include tips from every awesome 2021 interview in today’s blog post, so the list includes a sampling. In 2022, I have a lot of fantastic interviews lined up and recorded already, and more folks who I’m working out the scheduling details with right now.
If you have a favorite episode of the podcast from this year, tell me all about it — send a quick note on social media, tag me @ClassTechTips in any posts you put up about the podcast, or send me an email and let me know all about your favorites.