I had a great opportunity to work with my campus staff on an early release and we did a little CSI activity using their document cameras. It was great fun and we had some great feedback. It was hands on - and with enough time and cameras set up that all my teachers could participate. I think had I made it more elaborate to incorporate both types of document cameras we had together, rather than splitting the two into groups I would have had more confusion, but something to think about. The teachers always want more time to learn - so this time we got time and hands on! Feel free to adapt it for your own use.
A new and 3 dimensional style of presenting your same old Powerpoints is with Emaze. In browsers such as Chrome and Firefox, you will see a few of these easy to use templates come to life! It makes it easy to take something old and give it a 'new' look. The content stays the same but the delivery mechanism is different. Have fun e-mazing your next presentation! **This is a great tool in lieu of Prezi, but note that it is in an online environment. If you documents are copyrighted or proprietary this is not for you.
Thanks to Mrs. Hoff for sharing this super awesome tool that is high touch and high tech. Plickers uses cards that you print from their website and then assign to a student to hold up during question/ response. Using your smart phone, you simply add questions and answers then scan your classroom using the camera on the app, and it captures the students A,B,C, or D responses for you. When you log in to the website, you can view your classes and their responses - color coded - red (incorrect) and green (correct). I find this is easy to use when incorporating a PowerPoint or simply a paper quiz by groups to respond to as a formative assessment tool. Students enjoy it once they realize the direction they point the card determines their answer submitted to me. Have fun plicking!
One of our new team members at work shared this cute plug in that creates embeddable 'bling' titles for you. You simply type in your text, select a glitter style and copy the embed code to paste. *Note: It is a flash based plug in, which means if you use Apple products or tablets, the flash may not appear. It is super easy and fun to use - and if you are into bling...this is definitely for you!
Edmodo has been used for a few years at my campuses, but as a district we are making a big push for middle- junior high levels to utilize Edmodo for a virtual classroom for teachers. It enables you to blog, quiz, share documents, and provides a virtual backpack for all students. They have added Snapshot, which allows teachers select TEKS objectives and generates sample questions so you can get an idea of what students understand. We will be using Edmodo as we participate in the Global Read Aloud and I am excited to get more students and teachers on board! And FYI they have a free EdmodoCon online tomorrow - check it out!
Class Dojo is an excellent classroom behavior management tool that is easy to use...especially when you can just click your phone to track student behavior. It provides reports and you can have students and parents gain access to see what is happening. Use it as a daily routine that students are aware of....they will notice! For those of you new to Dojo - find all the resources you will need here: http://www.classdojo.com/share
Well, this summer vacation is almost over but I have been reading up and decifering what one of my campuses will be participating in this fall - The Global Read aloud project with a wonderful book called One for the Murphy's (we selected this one from the choices). I am excited to see how it works to incorporate not only reading but collaboration and technology. I will post more as we begin, but if you'd like to join or take a look - visit The Global Read Aloud 2014.
Calling all teachers of English! This is something you have to check out if you haven't already! No Red Ink allows you to assign grammar and sentences to students as a class or individuals AND provides you a color coded grid of their performance. You will know at a glance who is struggling where. And another winner is that it integrates with those of you using Edmodo and they just added sentence fragments! Truly a blessing that can replace or
Last week I started working with our AP students to create a Weebly blog to get them posting and integrating a little more tech into their writing. I call this lesson, Writing with Weebly. Weebly is primarily a website builder program that allows for teachers to create monitored students accounts (up to 40) under their accounts, or the students can create their own accounts with an email and password. It includes an option to setup a blog page, that works well with their devices for posting and commenting easily to others in class. We have collected the blog sites using a google form, and then place them as links in a classroom Symbaloo page embedded in the teacher's site. QR codes to the teacher site are placed around the room for ease of use with devices. The students are having fun writing with Weebly!
After a quickly passing month, I have found the new love for more effectively teaching students: Nearpod! This BYOD and very device neutral app (it works on Apple, Android, Windows, and Blackberry) allows for teacher led instruction and interactivity; a.k.a. taking powerpoint to the next level! You can take previously created powerpoints and upload them to the program, then add in the free interactive tools (open ended questions, polling, mulitple choice, and drawing). If you don't want to recreate the wheel, the Nearpod Store features lots of free lessons and some paid that you can use to start your journey. Take a look, I think you will love it as much as I do.
I work with teachers and students as an education technology specialist for middle school and serve as the TXDLA K-12 Board Member. My goal is to share innovative and useful information for other educators, as well as catalog my personal finds along the way!