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Showing posts from October, 2016

5 Ways to Make Writing Accessible in Google Docs

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Writing is an important component of all schools, yet it often creates barriers for students based on ability and disability. Google Docs is an awesome tool to increase student success in the writing process. Here are five ways to make writing more accessible in the classroom: 1. Google Voice Typing Google Docs has a great feature called Voice Typing.  When you are in the Google Chrome Browser, open up a Google Doc, choose the Tools Menu, and select Voice Typing.  Students can use this free speech-to-text tool to record their thoughts.  2. Table of Contents Feature How can you use Google to provide students with the scaffolds and supports they need? Why not turn to the table of contents feature in Google Docs to answer FAQ's or Frequently Asked Questions. Students will be able to click on a hyperlinked text, which will direct them to the resources they need to answer their questions.  Want to see it done? Check it out! 3. Outline View The outline view

November is Clicks for a Cause Month!

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Addison Jacobs was born on 1/13/15, one month prematurely with unknown underlying medical issues. At nine months old, she was diagnosed with Shwachman-Diamond syndrome (SDS), a rare autosomal recessive disorder characterized by exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, bone marrow dysfunction, leukemia predisposition, and skeletal abnormalities. Addison requires a lot of care with all of her complex medical issues. All of her medical necessities trips to Philly for her care and time off work creates an enormous financial strain for her family.   During the month of November, I need your help to make a difference for Addison and her family! Here is how! Visit and share blog posts - I will be personally donating 1 cent to her family’s medical fund for every blog visit for the entire month of November. Make a donation - for the price of coffee or lunch, make a donation to Addison’s fund via credit card, debit card, check, or cash. Sign up to make a donation using this Google

HOW You Use Video Makes ALL of the Difference

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Do you have students watch videos for class? Are you flipping your classroom? I love using the power of video, but have you ever thought about the potential barriers students might face when watching videos? Here are a few things to think about: How would a student with hearing difficulties listen to your video?  How will non-visual learners access information?  How will students without Internet access or devices access your videos outside of school?  If we don't think about these things, we create unintentional learning barriers for our students. Here are a few tips for utilizing an important medium like video, while still providing access to all learners: 1. Where you post makes all of the difference . Are you using YouTube to post your videos? If not, you may want to consider using this powerful tool. Why? The automatic Closed-Captioning feature provides access to students with hearing difficulties or who need to see the words. 2. If you cannot use YouTube,

Are You Still Playing "Not-It"? Why Not Chwazi?

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I am always looking for unique classroom management tools that take a new spin on old practices. Having trouble deciding who will share their analysis of an article? Trying to decide who will present your group's findings to the class? Whatever the dilemma,   Chwazi   makes random group selection fun. This iOS and Android App is known as the "finger chooser" and is very simple to use.  There are two different features   Fingers  is a very helpful feature to randomly select one person. Choose the number of people that will be selected (from 1 to 4), place one of your fingers on the screen, and the randomly selected finger(s) will be highlighted on the screen.  Groups is a helpful feature for creating random groups. Choose the number of groups and people within the group, everyone places their fingers on the screen, and random groups will appear highlighted in different colors the screen. Conclusion : Chwazi can be an excellent tool for any class

7 Reasons Why You Need to Use PBS Election Central

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We are less than a month away from the Presidential Election in the United States. Regardless of who you are or are not voting for, there are many great tools to help our students understand the entire process.  PBS Election Central is an excellent resource to understand the entire election process, providing engaging resources to foster learning and debate. Here are seven reasons why you should be using this awesome tool! 1. Election Collection The Election Collection is a comprehensive set of resources describing why we have elections, how democracy works, and the foundations of the US Government. 2. The Election Process Have you ever wondered how Presidents get elected or how the election process works?  The Election Process provides a set of PBS Learning Media videos and resources describing the process in user-friendly language and terms. 3. Understand the Presidential Debates How do Presidential Debates work? Check out the Understanding Presidential Debates sect

More Than News! The New York Times Learning Network

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Finding useful resources to engage students is one of the biggest challenges many educators face. The New York Times Learning Network could provide teachers with valuable lesson plan resources, student activities, relevant articles, stimulating current events, and much more! Student Activities: The New York Times Learning Network is filled with student resources, such as articles, writing prompts, multimedia, and contests. There are several different types of materials for students to use in the learning process, such as the Article of the Day and Teenagers in the News. The Writing Prompts section provides students with numerous options for starting the writing process, such as student opinions and picture prompts! One of the best ways to get students writing is to provide them with real-world audiences. The Contest section contains a calendar of opportunities for students to compete in writing contests and more! Lesson Plans: Need lesson plan ideas? The New York Times Lea