Thursday, December 24, 2015

So what’s the real message?




Kathy James and her students have been exploring the role of media literacy (especially propaganda) while reading Animal Farm.  As they created their own products, they used Google Drawing to produce their original advertisements.  Here are two samples of their work. I think this is a creative use of Drawing- a tool that many folks do not use.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Need a newsletter?



Are you a former Publisher person looking for an option to create a newsletter?  How about Google Slides?  In the video below, the Gooru explains all the steps. I added a sample I created- would love to work with your class on this project.


Need a prompt to argue?






The New York Times Learning Network has gathered a collection of 301 argumentative prompts in  PDF file. Want a narrative or more personal writing  instead- there are 500 of those are well!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Add music to your American History classroom




The Library of Congress has a vast collection of American music- from sheet music to audio files.  How could you enhance your students’ understanding by introducing the music of the times?  Visit The LIbrary of Congress Celebrates the Songs of America.

Friday, December 18, 2015

All about George (and his home)




Washington that is and his estate Mount Vernon.  This site includes a variety of articles and information as well as an interactive tour of the estate.  Wander through the rooms (and up and stairs) to explore this historic home.  Who knew the handsome bannister in the entryway came from wood Washington collected during the French and Indian War?

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

For the Wright stuff


From Twitter:

New search options in Drive


While reading a post from Richard Byrne (in Free Technology for Teachers), I learned of the new advanced search features in drive!  This makes it easier to find your files using a variety of filters!  Here’s a look at the new options:

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Unsubmit or Return?


Confused about the difference between un-submit or return in your Google Classroom?  Check out this brief blog post from Alice Keeler and you will be an expert.  I will add this to my tech support site.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Kindergarten Activities



While reading Richard Byrne’s blog (Free Technology for Teachers) on a review for spelling apps, I saw Building Language for  LIteracy site from Scholastic.  It contains three different games that would be perfect on an interactive Whiteboard, chromebook or iPad.  You could add it to the home-screen ( it is not an app) to make it easy to access! Let your students play with Nina, Leo, and Reggie.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Shift for a new doc


In her post, Alice Keeler shares a shortcut for opening a new Google Document.  Go to Drive, hit the Shift + t keys- and a new tab will open with the new doc.

How does it relate?




If you are teaching math, you know how many of last year’s concepts.  Here’s an interactive chart that will help you see the dependencies between topics and grades.  This was done for grades K-8. This was shared in a Discovery Education email.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Teaching Financial Literacy?



Then you might want to register with Banzai!  They will connect with free resources to help students learn to manage their money. ( I started the registration process, but since I don’t have a real class, I didn’t complete it). It is geared for grades 8-12.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

ELA and Math - get your exit ticket!




Zeal is a free site that offers ELA and Math exit tickets based on subject.  Like many of these types of products (i.e., Socrative), the student logins and enters the code for your class.  Once they complete the exit ticket, you can see the results. For grades K-8.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Join the Network




Are you a history teacher?  Do you work with primary sources?  Then you should consider joining the TPS Teachers Network.  Complete the free registration and begin to connect (think of this as social media) with other educators with similar interests. Join groups, exchange ideas, build collaborations- the choice is up to you!

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

The history of American Immigration




I recently had the opportunity to chaperone a trip to Ellis Island- a place that brings immigration close to home (my grandfather arrived along with millions of others).  America’s Heritage: A History of Immigration is an interactive timeline complete with images, videos, and more.  Help your students see the big (and continuing) picture of immigration.
For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Teaching younger children about the world


Kid World Citizen provides lesson plans and ideas to help young minds explore the world through culture (food, art, environment).  This site will provide lesson plans and suggestions to encourage global thinking.  For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The season is not over yet



Football season that is.  Discovery Education has a new program to help your students connect the math and science to the game.  Check out Madden NFL: Football by the numbers.  There are activities and teacher support material.  I’ve seen several of my DEN Stars post on Facebook how well it is working with their students.  Anybody up to the challenge?

Walk in the footsteps of the Incas





Enter Machu Picchu through the main gate and visit main square as well as the Temple of the Condor.  The beauty and majesty of Machu Picchu can be visited using Google Maps (street views).  Click here to visit. You can use the mouse to navigate your path.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

What we are thankful for



While working with some augmented reality apps (and teaching first graders how to use the iPad), the students shared their thoughts of thankfulness.  We used their cornucopias to speak their words!

Vaping

About a month ago, I was having dinner out with my son and noticed there were folks vaping at the next table.  Here is a TEDx talk by Dan Giovenco (SWMHS alumni) on vaping and public health.



Monday, December 7, 2015

Teaching CS without a computer?




That’s the aim of Computer Science Unplugged!  There are many coding skills that can taught without a computer or any electronic device.  For activities for grades 4-12, please check out the site.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Tagul (chrome word clouds)



While I have been a big Wordle and Tagxedo fan, neither of those tools works on a chromebook.  Recently I was reminded of Tagul (see the post here from MIchelle Bond).  It works on chrome, allows you to sign in with Google, and has many of the same features as Tagxedo.  Here’s a sample I created- see if you can guess the topic.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Sizing up the universe



One of my former colleagues had a favorite planet scale complete with a variety of planets and how far they would be from the sum ( I remember one of the planets would have been down at the local Shop Rite).  Here’s an online activity from the Smithsonian that allows you to create your own solar system to scale.  Once you select the size of your earth (and the moon), you can see how large the orbit would be in your neighborhood.  From the team at ScienceNetLinks, you are Sizing up the Universe.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Wisdom from kindergarten


I had a great time this morning in kindergarten.  In addition to using the iPads to make flashcards fly (AR Flashcards), the students also colored sheets and brought them to life.(Quiver).  While all this happiness was going on in the classroom, I worked with students (a group at a time) to create this iMovie with ChatterPIX using their drawings and reflections on their time in kindergarten.



Here are some photos from our morning:




Bring out your inner wizard






With Wizer!  Here you can make online worksheet like projects ( matching, fill ins,and many more).  You can sign in via Google and then share the link (including a link to classroom) for your students.  Here’s the link to a sample I created.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Science for the very young




While Science4Us has a paid component, there are many free resources for younger students on this site. There are interactives (the screenshot here is one example) as well as songs and projects.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Want history with attitude?



Or really hip history?  Check out Hip Hughes History (here’s his channel)- there are many videos on a wide variety of history topics.  While it is geared for grades 8 and above, I think you might be able to use clips with upper elementary students.
For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

And then J.J. posted




What if well known atomic scientists used Fakebook to share their theories on the atom?  That’s what Tyneesah Stokes and Brian Garsh's high school students created recently in class. Here are a few examples- click on the link to see the complete Fakebook page.





Monday, November 30, 2015

Can you land safely (and on the target)?




Test your pilot skills as you try to land the HIAD ( see this NASA site for the description).  Beginning with basic training and unlock other roles. You will have a chance to customize your cargo carrier to help transport items from the International Space Station.


For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Big Huge Labs




This was one of the first sites I every used when I began this position over five years ago.  Big Huge Labs has a variety of templates to make poster, trading cards  (sample here), and more!


For the complete post from Free Technology for Teachers, please click here.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

OCR




Got a PDF that you need to edit?  Don’t worry about retyping.  Use Google Docs to help unlock the form and edit away.  It's all done via optical character recognition.

Here is a brief video from Jamie Keet  explaining the process.



Thursday, November 26, 2015

Knock, knock...

Click here to find out!


Come explore animal habitats!  Animal Homes is an easy to use site for younger students.  Just click the habitat to see animals who call this home!

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Need math help?


Looking for help with algebra, calculus, and more? Check out Tarrou’s Chalk Talk for a list of Professor Bob’s videos or you can subscribe to his YouTube channel.  Over 500 videos on a wide variety of math topics from brief (under 3 minutes) to entire lessons (about thirty minutes). I’ve included  one as a sample.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

See what the UN has done for you..




Select your gender, age, and native land and view the impact of the UN.  This might be interesting to have your students view from their perspective as well as the parents and grandparents. Visit What has the UN done for you!

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Show me your math magic!


Are you a math magician?  This math site allows you to select the operation as well as level.  Then let the math problems begin.  This would work well as a center, interactive whiteboard, or for homework practice.
For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Annotating a picture!

Here's another way to have your students show what they know!  Have them use a Google drawing and let them annotate with boxes and arrows!  For younger students, you could create a template and how them move the boxes to show their understanding.  On Friday, I tried this with a third grade class (I created a drawing, added the boxes, and then made a copy for them in Google Classroom).  I worked well- the students were able to drag the boxes and label the image.
For more ideas on using Google drawings, please see the blog post here from Paul Gaffney.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

New look for BrainPOP Homepage



But don’t worry- none of the awesome BrainPOP content has changed.  The page is a little easier to navigate (and I really like the larger canvas  for Make a Map!)  In addition,  you can log in ( with the username and password ) and now access all the BrainPOP site content on an iPad (yet single sign in will not work on an iPad).   BrainPOP Jr has not changed- to access that on an iPad, you will need the app to view the free movie of the week.  

If you want all the details, here’s the link to a recorded webinar outlining the changes.

For budding artists and writers


Story Maker is a free site from ABCya that allows you to write and draw!  This would be fun for younger students.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

More than math games



While this article  (4 Win-Win Math Games) does teach a few math games for elementary students, it also provides strategies and suggestions for using math games in the classroom.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Friday, November 20, 2015

The top 25


Starting with the birth of the Earth, this BBC list highlights the 25 Turning Points in Earth’s History.  This would be interesting to  share the events with your students and how them put them in order.

For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Learn Engineering



Learn Engineering is a site for 8 to 12 graders that looks to explain the different aspects of engineering. It contains a variety of videos to help students to either explore on their own or as a group.  For the complete post from TeachersFirst, please click here.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Thanksgiving a la Peardeck


Please read this blog post for several interesting ideas using Peardeck to engage your students.  Get them thinking about the real history of Thanksgiving.