This site is not just for the littles! It is K-6, but I had to share it today. In the + section, it covers skills for high school and up. eLearning is a great free site with educational activities for kids. What I like about it is that they cannot click through just to get to the game, they have to listen to the dialogue.
There are activities for math, science, environmental skills, computer skills, health, language arts, and life skills. Once you click into a subject, you can choose the grade, and select a game that goes over the skill you are looking for or you can do a search.
The games are bright, clearly spoken, and user friendly!
This is a video that does not have audio, but it takes you through a first grade game.
The life skills has a great section that our elementary counselors may like for specific topics children that come to them face.
I recommend using this videos for students that may need a little more support or those that need to move on. If you have a Google Classroom set up, the links to some of these could be great to put on there!
Betsy O'Day came into my office at the beginning of the school year, excited about an available app. This app is called Plickers, and it can be great for classrooms that have limited technology, but still boosts student engagement!
This is a great FREE app if you don't have a clicker system in the classroom. We know how expensive those systems are, so it is hard to purchase them for all classrooms. This solution allows the teacher to print out cards that have a code similar to a zoomed-in QR (quick response) code. A card may look like this:
There are different cards that have different designs, which lessons the chances of a student copying someone's answers. Each side is assigned a letter, A, B, C, D, and these are the answers to questions you create on the Plickers website. You form classes, assigning each student a number. They should get these cards and use them each time they are in class. Recommendations I have seen include having students tape them in a notebook they always bring to class. Or if you want to reuse the cards for multiple classes, leave them at the desks. One teacher tried laminating them, but the glare caused problems when it came to scanning.
The scanning is done by your phone or other mobile device with 3G, 4G, or WiFi accessibility. You have the app on your phone and then when the students answer the questions, they hold up their cards. From anywhere in the room, you should be able to scan their cards. You do not have to walk up to each card and do it. It can scan multiple cards at a time.
If you have a projector, you can show these results in real time. It will show who got the answers correct and incorrect. It will also show if you were unable to scan their card. Hello, formative assessment!
Need help using this amazing tool?? Ask me, and I will come help! This is free for Android and for Apple!
Check out this Getting Started page and How-To video by Jennifer Zurawski!
Many people have asked about Google Docs this week, so here is an overview on what Docs does and how to "Share" documents with other users.
The National Library of Virtual Manipulatives is a wonderful resource for teachers and for students that need manipulatives for math computation. Many students can benefit from using them, but there is not always a ready supply for use. Note, your Java has to be up-to-date for this site!
You can search by grade levels or topics. There are manipulatives for fractions, base ten, geoboards, clocks, transformations, money, charts, graphs, number lines and more! This site supports K-12.
I just realized that today is Wednesday, not Tuesday! I blame it on having Monday off and the fact that my son turned 4 today. My mind is busy! Anyway, tomorrow I will do two sites of the day to make up for it.
Tip for Today: Google Search for Images.
I took a college class this summer and realized how important it is for students to choose images in a safe and legal way. We HAVE to teach kids that going to Google, searching, and pulling whatever we want is not the best way to get images. Credit MUST be given or they must choose images that are labeled for reuse. So here, it goes!
Go to Google.com, search your image:
Now go to the toolbar under the search bar and click on "Search Tools".
A new toolbar comes up under that and you want to choose "usage rights".
Right now I have all images that are tagged as school clip art. I want to choose one of the selections. We just want images that we can reuse, so any of those selections work. Noncommercial means that you aren't going to publish this in a document that you will be selling, like a book or worksheet. Choose any of these options. It will decrease your image selection, but it will be legal to use them.
Need more image choices? My favorite search is: Creative Commons. Choose to search images or even music that you can use. I would recommend learning to cite the images and music because many of them require it. That is a post for another day! Happy searching!
Reading is Fun (RIF) is a wonderful literacy website for adults and kids. It is actually the oldest and largest nonprofit literacy organization in the United States. There are book lists, games, articles, brochures, and more! If you use the link from this paragraph, it will take you to the main site where you can find resources. These are GREAT for parents!
If you follow the Reading Planet link, you will go to the child version of RIF for 6+ years old. There is a 0-5 year old section, too. You can find this by following the top link, click on "Kids" in the top right. It gives more options.
Illustrate a story - download and then draw a picture to illustrate it
Bookplates - print, color, glue in your books
Reading Monthly Calendar - This appears to not work at this time!
Coloring Book - interactive online coloring book
Some games you find include...
Sink It 'n Solve It
Book Zone - Watch and listen to online books, get book lists, see and write reviews
Express Yourself - More of a social area that you probably won't use as much with younger kids.
Welcome to Website Wednesday! This is one of my "oldie but goodie" sites. I have used Scholastic Story Starters for YEARS. I can't wait to share this one with you!
When you go to this site, you are greeted by a page that allows students to choose their genre, adventure, fantasy, sci-fi, or scrambler (random computer choice!). Upon selection, students will go to a page where they can put in their name (encourage first name ONLY) and choose a grade level. This will change the complexity of the writing pieces - letters, lists, story, news article, etc. - and topics. I like to think there is a lot of differentiation that can happen here. I let more experienced writers go higher and more emergent writers go lower.
They then go to the spinner! This is where they will spin for a story. The first box will give the type of writing. I just spun and got "Write a short poem about". The second box is an adjective or description. Mine says, "fierce". Next is the character, and mine is "servant". Lastly is a situation, which mine is "who has the strength of 500 people". My topic would be "Write a short poem about a fierce servant who has the strength of 500 people". If my writer did not want to do a poem, I can press the button under that box to change it. I did this and got..."Write a short legend about...".
Students then decide which paper would be best for this project, notebook paper, letter, newspaper, or postcard. They can choose to include a drawing. Then they get started. Students can save these pieces, but they cannot come back to edit them.
How Can I Use It?
*Free write day - Let them just create!
*After finishing a piece, allow them to do this until everyone is finished.
*Partner writing - This is a great way for students to collaborate on their writing.
*Many times I have them write and give them a chance to share with each other. They like to show these stories off to each other.
*Class collaboration story - Do one together! There is a Teacher's Guide in the right corner.
*When you have a sub, this can be an easy and fun way to still have writing.
What I Have Learned About this Site
HAVE FUN! The kids love this!
Fifth grade teacher in a 1:1 iPad classroom, sharing my journey with technology in the classroom