If you are not a follower of The Techie Teacher Blog you are missing out! Julie teaches me something new each time she posts! Here is a link to her Blog. Her posts are filled with pictures and step by step directions on how to bring technology into your classroom. The great thing is that she always discusses technology within a context of a lesson that she has recently taught.
Here are a few things she has gotten me thinking about from this recent post:
Students can upload digital pieces to dotstorming. Then they see everyone’s work and can uses dots to vote on their favorite piece and write comments. Cool!
With Google Drawing students can work together on separate devices to create one picture. Very cool! Here is Julie’s description of how she used drawing and dotstorming together.
I have seen a few teachers use Padlet on Twitter. This is a virtual wall that students can respond to teacher questions and see all their classmates responses as well. It looks very, very cool. I am just unsure if it is free or not. Click here to learn more.
Boardthing looks a lot like Padlet. The Techie Teacher describes her use of it with spelling groups here. It is free right now which is why I may start with this tool. You have to request and invite since it is in Beta stage. I am waiting to be accepted 🙂
Finally there is Realtime Board. This is an online whiteboard that looks like it is free if you collaborate with just 3 users.
All this Tech knowledge came from one Techie Teacher post! Are you ready to follow her yet? I still have to decide which medium I want to start trying with my students. If you have a favorite that is FREE let me know!
You know how they say that if something sounds too good to be true…it probably is?
Well, I can’t seem to find the truth in that when it comes to EPIC. Teachers get a FREE account and access to tons of beautiful digital books. Check out this video:
I am only just beginning to explore this site but it looks amazing. The proof will be when I try to use it at my school with our internet connection. Fingers cross it is as good as it sounds!
BiblioNasium is another digital resource that I am interested in trying this upcoming school year. It allows student to track their reading, get recommendations, and write reviews.
Has anyone else tried this resource? How did it go? What did you like and not like about it? Is anyone willing to try it with me? Let me know!
I launched this Blog on June 4, 2015 just the second day of summer vacation. Today I mark my 66 Blog post with just two remaining days before students return to our school. Blogging has provided me a place for reflection on my daily learning and keeps everything neatly in one place (with links). My positive experience with Blogging has got me wondering:
- What would happen if students were invited to Blog?
- What would I need to know to help students Blog?
- What materials would I need to have for a class to Blog?
- How would student Blogging work?
- What routines and expectations would need to be established?
- Which students would love it? Why?
- Which students would hate it? Why?
- How could I keep the student posts safe and appropriate?
Luckily there are many teachers before me that have attempted this feat, succeeded, and have shared their learning.
Here Kathleen Sokolowski shares her learning in trying it with her 3rd graders last year. Read this AMAZING first post she wrote to her students inviting them to Blog. Here is a space where you can read questions that teachers have had about classroom Blogging.
KidBlog is the platform that Kathleen used with her students and after looking at other platforms what I think I would use too.
My questions continue:
- Could I do this too?
- How should I use it?
- With whom should I try it?
So, what are your thoughts? Have you Blogged with students before? Do you want to try it with me? Let me know and we can join the adventure together!
Recently I learned about a 10 digital resources that I want to remember:
- ClipConverter.cc this FREE site allows you to convert YouTube videos to your computer without ads. Nice!
- Zaption is a FREE site and allows you to create learning tours — you can embed questions into videos and track students answers. Cool! Here is a link to a demo.
- Rewodify that allows users to simplify difficult text. All you do is copy and paste text into the program and it changes difficult vocabulary automatically.
- Wonderopolis is a site where students can go to find the answers to their OWN QUESTIONS. Check out this great blog post from A Teaching Life on how to use this website in your classroom.
- Flocabulary covers vocabulary, language arts, social studies, and math topics by rapping about them. It has a current events video uploaded every Thursday evening (appropriate for 5th grade). Each video has a transcription and students can click on vocabulary and see picture.
- Word Generation has lessons with 5 vocabulary words for math, science, debate, and writing.
- TC Courses of Study shows progression ladder of book choices on student interests
- Evernote is an app that allows you to take notes on a student conference, upload a picture of work, and record a conversation.
- Genius Scan allows you to turn any picture into a PDF.
- 50 favorite classroom apps that I need to take a closer look at soon.
So, are there any digital resources you have discovered recently? Please share!
Wow, I just used TweetChat to participate in a Twitter Chat this evening and it totally simplified the process!
All you need to do is go to the TweetChat homepage before your chat begins and enter the hashtag for your chat. The app then pulls up a page that displays just the tweets for the chat and it automatically adds the hashtag to your posts.
The world of Twitter is fairly new to me. What I love about Twitter is you can be connected to your favorite people and organizations effortlessly. One of the organizations I follow on Twitter is The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project (#TCRWP). To me, this organization provides the BEST professional development on literacy in the country.
On Wednesdays this summer #TCRWP is hosting Twitter chats on a variety of topics (see picture). The chats begin at 7:30 and quickly end at 8:30. Twitter chats usually begin with a check in where you list your name and where you are from. Then the moderator of the chat presents a series of questions (Q1, Q2, Q3, etc.). As a member of the chat you provide your answer to each question (A1, A2, A3, etc.) while at the same time reading all the other members’ answers. It is a fast paced literacy work out!
Today I participated in the “Keep Your Learning Sky High This Summer” chat presented by #TCRWP. I am happy to say that I was able to keep up with the chat for the entire hour. Phew! The next #TCRWP” chat I hope to be a part of is the July 1st “Reading Institute – Looking Ahead.”
So, who do you follow on Twitter that helps you improve your teaching? Have you ever participated in a Twitter Chat? What advice do you have for those of us who are new?