Ordinal Numbers: iPad Activity

Saturday, October 10, 2015

This week I did a fun lesson with a 2nd grade teacher who wanted her students to practice ordinal numbers using the iPads. We downloaded the free app, Make a Scene:Under the Sea, to the iPads. This app has a full version that you can purchase for $2.99 but we didn't need to do that for this simple lesson! We just downloaded the FREE version.  Once students opened the app, we explained that they would use the sea creatures/items to make a line-up in the ocean based on the directions from a ActivInspire flipchart we projected. Click {HERE} to take you to the flipchart.

 photo 1_zps7gmlubef.jpg

Students had to arrange the ocean stickers IN ORDER. We revealed the answer (2nd slide) at the end so the students could see how well they did. Next, students made their own line-up ocean scene and saved it to the camera roll. We imported their creation into Educreations and they explained their lineup by stating the positional words and writing the correct representation. This practice time was very valuable! The teacher and I walked around to help her students write their numbers correctly, add the correct abbreviations and read the positional words accurately. Here are a couple of final products:

Main Idea vs Detail Tech Project: FREEBIE

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Have you ever used Pixiclip with your students? This FREE web tool has so many uses that the possibilities are endless. Basically it is an interactive whiteboard. You can upload images, draw sketches, record/annotate and share with friends. I LOVE that you have the option for a webcam to capture and display as students are working. This feature seems to keep the kids more focused since they know the cam is capturing every moment they are working.

This week I had the mission to help 5th graders with identifying the main idea and details in passages. I thought Pixiclip would be the perfect tool to use! Students chose one passage from the pack below that is FREE for YOU. Passages correlate with different 5th grade Virginia Science SOL topics. The passages come as PDFs (for students who do not have access to technology) and JPEGs in this pack. Have your students select a jpeg that they want to work with and save it somewhere to their computer. Our district has a student server that allows us to distribute items like this for students to easily access. If you do not have a student server, then I would suggest uploading them to a shared Google folder or a Comemories site that your students can get to with ease.

Click the image to take you to this FREE download

I showed the students how Pixiclip works and they went to town with their passages. Seriously...I have never seen kids SO excited to dissect a reading passage. They couldn't WAIT to use the highlighter tool and talk about the main idea and details. THIS IS WHY I LOVE MY JOB. Boring, laborious tasks become so engaging when technology is involved.

Here was the example I showed (this tool is still in Beta version so the audio doesn't sound amazing.) Click the Pixiclip icon in the lower right hand corner to take you to the full screen version:

 Check out some of today's final products:

AMAZING Augmenter App

Monday, September 21, 2015

A few weeks ago Antara from Trendyworks Technologies contacted me to tell me about their new augmented reality app, Augmenter. After playing around for a little bit and having some kids use Augmenter, I have fallen in love (again) with another cool app!

Augmenter for iOS and Augmenter for Android

This magical AND educational app was created just for teachers to bring science, social studies and math alive in their classrooms. Over 300 models are available with the paid version ($7.99) for K-12 students. There are also 13 FREE models available when you download the FREE app. Here are just a few pictures using the FREE models:

LIBERTY BELL (that I took apart)

Models include:

Human anatomy
Skeleton system
Digestive system
Respiratory system
Excretory system
Animal cell
Plant Cell
Arrangement and types of teeth
Parts of Ear
Sectional view of eye
Parts of a flower
Reproductive system
Endocrine glands

Physics Models:
electric circuit
Flemings left hand rule
Magnetic field lines
Convex lens
Convex mirror
Concave lens
Concave mirror

Chemistry models:
Atomic structure of 50+ elements including hydrogen, oxygen, carbon, Nitrogen etc.
Molecular structure of benzene, carbon di oxide, methane, ethane etc.
Electron dot structure of ethane, ethene

Animal models:
Animals include animated dinosaur, animated tiger, elephant, giraffe, fish, deer, stag, rhino, hippo, duck, dolphin, beetle, penguin, rat, scorpion, tortoise etc.

Fruit models:
Fruits like Apple, orange, mango, pomegranate, banana, guava, pear, pineapple etc.

Flower models:
Many flowers like hibiscus, jasmine, sun flower, lily, lotus, rose, tulip

Christmas models:
10 types of christmas trees used across America.

American history models:
Important monuments like lincoln memorial, statue of liberty, liberty bell etc.

Math 3D geometry:
Surface area of Cube
Surface area of Cuboid
Surface area of Sphere

What really makes this AR app stand out are the cool interactions. Students can add titles for parts of the model, take apart individual parts, hide parts, highlight parts, set transparency, break apart the whole model, analyze parts, take screenshots and use a pen tool for drawing over the models.

How does it work? All you need to do is download the FREE app and print out one of these markers.

Click the marker below to take you to the download:

Launch the app and everything is pretty much self explanatory.

Check out these two demo videos:

If you are like me then you can't (well...don't have the funds to) download paid apps at school. However, I would still download this app to access all of the free features...it is pretty cool! If you are one of the lucky ones and can download paid apps, I think this one is definitely worth the $7.99 which will give you access to ALL 300 models! This app would be great for you to download if you have kids at home. Happy exploring :)

Building Background Knowledge the Techie Way

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

5 ways to build background knowledge the techie way
Be sure to head over to the Virginia is for Teachers collaborative blog to check out my post about 5 ways you can help build your students' background knowledge by using technology!

Click HERE

Moon Phases Project FREEBIE

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Do you teach about the moon phases? Then you NEED to try this E-A-S-Y techie project that will get your kids practicing their sequencing and writing skills all in one activity.

Have your students make an animated gif (see below) of the 8 moon phases. They could either find their own copyright free images online or you could provide them with images that aren't arranged in order. I used Dancing Crayon Design's Moon Phases clipart that I found on TpT {HERE} for $3.50. This pack comes with black and white images, clip art style images, outlined images, photo style images and full cycle images of the moon phases...GREAT deal!

Next, head to a gif maker site like gifmaker.me and upload the 8 images. Arrange the pictures in order by dragging and dropping. Download the gif to your desktop.

Finally, get your students writing by adding their gif to a Google Doc or Google Slides and write a paragraph about the moon phases. Here is an example:

Here is a FREE set of step by step directions (screenshots included!) and grading rubric if you are interested in carrying this out with your students:
FREE moon phases technology project directions and rubric

Also, be sure to check out my newest instructional PowerPoint all about the moon phases:

5 Reasons to LOVE the iPad Camera

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Be sure to head on over to Rachel Lynette's Minds in Bloom blog to check out my guest post about 5 reasons why you should LOVE the iPad camera in your classroom. Click {HERE}.

Also check out my guest post about learning to program with MaKey MaKeys in the K-5 classroom on Technology for Teachers by clicking {HERE}.

I also did a guest post on Laura Candler's blog about Building a Bridge with Parent-Made Listening Centers. Click {HERE}.

5 EASY Techie Tools for Social Studies Projects

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Are you looking to spice up your Social Studies lessons this school year? No iPads? Then here are 5 EASY technology tools you could use with your students using laptops/desktops.

#1 Scribble Maps
When I think of Social Studies, the first visual I see in my mind is a MAP. I think I can thank my 6th grade Geography teacher for that. My entire 6th grade binder was filled with about 1,000 paper maps...uhhhh! With the help of technology in this day and age, teachers can provide a real world geography experience for their students and "fly" virtually from place to place. There are a ton of really cool map techie tools out there such as Google Earth, Google Maps, Google Tour Builder, etc. that you can use in your classroom. However, today were are talking really EASY tools. Therefore, check out Scribble Maps.
There is an option to sign in but you don't have to. Simply go to the site, click "Create Your Map Now", zoom in or out on the world map, and start scribbling. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this website for the 3rd grade Virginia Social Studies standard on European Explorers. Students have to know the exact path each explorer took to the New World. Have your students pull up this website and draw out explorer paths by using the line tool. They can even use stamps to tell a story. Here is an example of Ponce de Leon's path (my stamp in Florida represents The Fountain of Youth):

You could even use the pencil tool to draw out different geographical regions you are studying:

There are a lot of other really cool features to this site but let's continue keeping it EASY today :)

#2 Powerpoint/Keynote
These programs have A LOT more power than creating slideshows. You can make really fun animations in both Powerpoint and Keynote and then turn it into a movie. For instance, I did a lesson last year (yes, another Explorer lesson) in which students made a Scribble Map (above) and saved it to their desktop. They uploaded their map as a background in a PowerPoint template that I had placed in Google Classroom (I also did a lesson in which the template was accessed from our student server) for the students to easily access. This template just had a small sailboat png image...that's it. After the map was turned into a slide background, I showed them the animation feature that would start their boat where the explorer was from and they would "sail" across the path he took to get to the New World. Students placed their boat at the sponsoring country. Then they had to make sure they clicked on the boat to add the animation. We went to Animations>Motion Paths>Draw a Line:
The students clicked on the middle of the boat and dragged their cursor (that displays a line) to their final destination. Afterwards, we went to Slideshow>Record Slideshow which launched the slide into presentation mode and they could record their voice talking about the explorer's journey. Here is a quick example that one student did involving ALL of the explorers (DISCLAIMER: All went well until Newport sailed to Richmond instead of Jamestown! hahaha):

#3 Newspaper Generator
Literally SO easy! Have your students head to The Newspaper Clipping Generator website and SUMMARIZE the MAIN IDEA of an event from history. This is a great way to integrate social students and language arts. All you have to do is enter a title for your paper, date, heading and story. Click on "Generate" and BOOM, you have this cute little creation:

#4 Timeline Maker
There are many really awesome Timeline makers out in cyberspace but here is a super EASY one that you could use in your classroom without any tech support :) Timeline Maker has a simple input screen that allows students to change the number of events, font and size for their timeline.

Here is a FREE planning sheet that contains the website address at the top if you would like for your students to pre-plan before getting the computers out. I know so many teachers who have a limited amount of time when it comes to using technology in their classrooms so this will help speed things along :)

ReadWriteThink also has an EASY Timeline Maker that you can add images to!

#5 Fakebook for Historical Figures
Many of you are probably familiar with this website but it is always a HIT. With Fakebook you can make "fake" Facebook pages for historical figures. Students first search for images that they can then upload to this site. Word of caution: This website advertises to "Search Google for images" but I would advise to have a little conversation about copyright. I wouldn't let students do a straight up Google image search to complete an activity like this and instead would use it as an opportunity to touch upon digital citizenship :)

To complete a Fakebook page, students simply enter the missing information and upload pictures:

I could keep going with technology tools for Social Studies projects! Hopefully these 5 ways will help you start off your year with something new to try out :)

If you haven't done so, be sure to check my 5 EASY Back to School Projects blog post by clicking the image below: