Posts

Showing posts from October, 2013

Don't Be a One and Done: Socrative + Edmodo = Dynamic Conversation (Part 2)

Image
NOVEMBER IS CLICK FOR A CAUSE MONTH! Join me for Click for a Cause. The nephew of one of my students was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and is at Hershey Medical Center receiving treatment. I was so touched by his story that I wanted to do something.  For every time someone visits my blog during the month of November, I am going to donate a penny to his medical fund. Although it is not much, several other people have agreed to match this amount. Please help by just visiting my blog or learning more about how you can help.  Although it is a little, every click means a lot.  READ MORE ABOUT CLICKS FOR A CAUSE As part of my Don't Be a One and Done series, I want to republish a post that I made last year! Here it is: A few weeks ago, I had talked with  @linlin8   (who by the way is an amazing teacher and blogger!) on Twitter. She gave me the idea of using an App called  Socrative  for my classes. It gives teachers the opportunity to poll and quiz students i

Don't Be a One and Done: iBrainstorm + Edmodo = Meaningful Action and Expression (Part 1)

Image
Are you a “One and Done” type of teacher? Do you find yourself using one App per lesson, when your students are thirsting for more! Many of us implement iPads this way; however there are creatively simple ways to use multiple apps in a lesson. What if we were to create opportunities for students to analyze, understand, apply, evaluate, collaborate, and create meaningful learning experiences in one class period? Over the next few posts, I would like to share with you some iPad recipes to reach all students.  Beginning of Class As my students came into class the other day, I had them grab an iPad and a partner. I posted a question to the class and had students use iBrainstorm , a free brainstorming app, to brainstorm a list of 2 - 3 they knew about a particular topic. Students used iBrainstorm to create a board filled with electronic post-it notes. Mill and Fill As students finished the assignment, I had them "mill" around the room and find other groups who had

Web Tools to Help You Manage Your Classroom: #Edmodo is More Than a Social Tool (Part 2)

Image
Many of us are using Edmodo to make  a social learning environment, a paperless classroom, or a creative way to assess  students. Did you know that Edmodo is more than a social tool? It can help our students stay organized in a variety of ways. Here are a few tools to help your students:  Planner Tool: We may require our students to write down  assignments  in an agenda book, but it often gets misplaced, left in a locker, or is left blank. How can we hold our students accountable for assignments without pulling our hair out?  Students can use  the Edmodo Planner to access a weekly or monthly calendar of assignments that are due. Students can check out all of their classes at once or use a filter to focus on a specific class. This is very helpful for your forgetful students because it can help them stay organized, access class materials, and parents can access this calendar with a parent login.  Alert Features:  Every student in your classroom has a computer in

Web Tools to Help You Manage Your Classroom: Google Forms and Performance Reviews? (Part 1)

Image
I cannot believe that is is almost the end of October already. Many of us have already gathered our bearings and have set ourselves up in a routine. We are starting to see that the "honeymoon" period is over and now our kids are really starting to show their real personalities. How can we use technology to keep ourselves and our students on track? Over the next few posts, I would like to explore a few web tools to help you out.  Google Forms = Performance Reviews Having students think about their performance is key to improving their behavior. At my school, we not only issue a quarterly grade, but a quarterly effort and conduct grade. It's a great idea, but I noticed that it wasn't helping the students in my classroom increase their performance.  The major problem was me!  In the past, my students have received a grade on their report card, but we haven't had much of a discussion about why they received the grade.  To counter this, I crea

Creative Ways to Use #Wikis: Word Wall Wikis (Part 2)

Image
Marzano has stated that students need to have "6 meaningful interactions" with vocabulary terms to completely understand the term. How do we use wikis to do this?  Wikis are still being used in education today to help build vocabulary skills! Let's continue our series "Creative Ways to Use #Wikis" with an emphasis on vocabulary. Word Wall Wikis One teacher I know is an  elective  teacher, who teaches a new SAT or technical word a week. Over the course of the year, students accumulate a glossary of terms that they use in class discussions, assessments, and writing assignments. In the past, this teacher has developed a "Word Wall" for students to see the terms; however, students are not able to access the wall at home, which is a major limitation.  To counter this challenge, he created a "Word Wall Wiki," where he provides the terms, definitions, pictures, and links to the word in use. As he teaches a word, he has a student add t

Creative Ways to Use #Wikis: Pre-Assessments (Part 1)

Image
Have we forgotten about wikis? It seems like there isn't as much emphasis on this collaborative tool, as in years past. This thought crossed my mind the other day, when I was completing an assignment for a grad class. In this course, we have had to create a Wikispaces wiki to serve as a reflection journal. After a lot of thought and researching a lot of creative ideas, I wanted to share a few with you in this series titled "Creative Ways to Use #Wikis": Pre-Assessments I recently read about a teacher who loves to use wikis for pre-assessments. Whenever his students begin a new chapter, he has students discuss in pairs what they already knew about the topic. Then he opens up a class discussion to see what students know. When he asks for groups to report their findings, he records their comments and ideas on a wiki page. After about 5 minutes, he assigns pairs of students to investigate whether the claims are fact or fiction. At the end of the class, students ve

How Do You Give #Directions? Use Social Media? (Part 3)

Image
Social Media has become a really great way of sharing information inside and outside of the classroom. I hear stories of teachers using various forms of Social Media to communicate to students, parents, and other stakeholders. Some teachers turn to Twitter, while others send home newsletters. The idea is to share important information very quickly. Here are some ideas: Use Edmodo Edmodo has literally changed the way that I teach. Students no longer print out assignments in my class, they upload them instead. I very rarely make copies because students can access directions and materials on Edmodo; however, in my Accounting class I use Edmodo for another reason. I generally post an outline of what we did in class that day. I also provide hyperlinks to resources that students can use to study for tests, review what we discussed in class, or access materials. Wikis and Blogs Anyone?  One teacher I know has to post an essential question on the board each day. She decided to take thi

How Do You Give #Directions? Stop Repeating Yourself! (Part 2)

Image
A few weeks ago, I was sitting in church and noticed something. Many of the announcements that used to be in the bulletin were now flashing in front of my eyes on a PowerPoint presentation. I suddenly thought, why can't I do the same in the beginning of class? So my creative mind began coming up with a few ideas. What do my  kids do in the beginning of class? They tend to ignore directions written on a chalkboard or PowerPoint slide. I get tired of repeating myself over and over and over and.... well you get the point! I decided to communicate upcoming dates, announcements, materials needed, etc. in a small slide slide show that repeats itself over and over. Best of all, the slides are loaded with bizarre pictures that get the point across. I mean, who doesn't want to get out a writing utensil after seeing a girl with a pencil up her nose? I know! I know! I am being a little graphic, but it does get their attention. Best of all, I found a way to play this PowerPoint on on