Sunday, November 28, 2010
New Math Apps
Math Bingo costs .99 and is a bingo game that the students can practice all four basic facts at three different levels. The highest level was impossible to do without paper and pencil which I like because it is a timed game. The fun part is that before they play they get to choose an Avatar to represent them. As they get the correct answer, a bug is placed on the board and there is some strategy because at the lower levels, the answer is repeated, so choosing the correct answer is important because of the time element. After each game, the players earn bugs to play Bingo Bug Bungee which is a fun eye hand coordinated game. It kind of drove me crazy the but kids will love it.
Nine Gaps is addicting, fun and free! It is an electronic Sodoku but much more fun. You are given a set game board with missing digits. Using the operations in the game, you place the numbers to make the columns and rows mathematically correct. It is fun because of the thinking involved to use the number already given and when you think you know the correct answer you just click and drag the number. There are 5 difficult levels, and it has unlimited puzzles. The games are timed, and I love how each time you play a level it encourages the player to try the next level. I just finished Order of Operations and my class class is going to crazy with this app.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Today I start my Thanksgiving vacation, and I am very thankful this year.
*I am excited that my family will be together now that our daughter is home from BGSU.
*I am lucky to work in a school that supports the integration of technology.
*I have found a new voice in my blog and enjoy reading the comments that keep me thinking.
*I will have time to explore the four new apps that I just purchased this week. Check back next week for an update.
I am going to take a blog break (I guess I am allowed to do that) even though I have only been up and blogging since August. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and I hope you enjoy all of your blessings.
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Newbery Club has Started!
In our school district, we have the availability to set up group blogs, so Bill sent a list of students who committed to the club to our tech coordinator, and he set the blog up for us. The students have a password and it is linked through Bill's web page for the library. This is the second best part of the club, I will tell you the best part later. I love the fact that all 18 students call talk to each other, leave comments, ask questions as well as follow their friend's reading. Bill, Joyce (of Grand Discussion) and I also can talk to the kids. Just last night I talked to 7 different students, and this morning a boy in my class told me thanks for reading his comment.
The best part is that 18 students want to read and are in a group that will support their reading. I just sat back and listened at our first 8:00 meeting like Bill said all students had read one or two books. Today during study hall, two of the club members were discussing which book they would read next: Countdown or Out of my Mind and how they could trade books if they finished in the same time line. They are talking about books. I am excited to try and keep up with their reading-they are even pushing me!
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Wonderful Word Wednesday: Greek and Latin Prefix & Suffixes
|Organized chaos while working on posters.|
|Working hard on their poster|
The following Wednesday, we did the great reveal which was really fun because the students did not know that I had duplicated the slips of paper, so each student said their prefix/suffix I would hear "I have that one too." After each student found their partner, we created a class rubric for designing their posters. This was interesting because they had such a wide variety of research that they wanted to include much higher level
information than I thought of originally.
|I love the pop up little book.|
The following Wednesday the students finished their posters, and they presented them to the class. This was exciting because this is when all the connections and light bulb moments happened during their presentations.
*Many of the prefixes and suffixes could be combined to make new words and until the students saw all the posters they did not realize this.
*Some of the students were able to create new words that they didn't think about prior to the presentations.
*As a class, the students decided they wanted to search for these prefix/suffixes in their JR books or even text books. I agreed to xerox the page and we would add the new words.
This is where I think the connections will occur with the student's writing as well as expanding their vocabulary. Time to be teleported back to Ohio-it was a successful journey!
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Going Beyond Story Kit
|Using her iPod to add figurative language to her story.|
|They have learned how to bookmark pages to use as research.|
Friday, November 12, 2010
Questions and Answers
I am learning so much from your experiences with iPods in the classroom. My class set just arrived today and I have spent the entire evening rereading your posts and exploring possible apps. My next question is...How do you introduce a new app? Do you have a way to show the entire class how the app works? What did you do to introduce the basics of how the iPod is operated at the very beginning? Also, do your students have email accounts so they can email each other or you? Boy do I agree that the learning curve is HUGE! Thanks for teaching us through your experiences.
Question 1) How do I introduce new apps?
Answer: I have introduced them in groups according to subjects. For example I share a group of word study apps then I introduced math apps etc. I have found if I group the apps the students typically find one they like and continue to use that one. On a side note, I also have found that time to play with the apps is imperative because the students need time to talk and share what they like/dislike about the apps as well as time for me to move around the room to help students.
Question 2) Do I have a way to show the entire class how the app works?
Answer: This has been a challenge, but I am very lucky that I have a portable Elmo that hooks into my computer so I can show them on my dry erase board using my iPod. This works pretty well not always clear but the students have the same app in front of them, so they just refer to the board as a reference
Question 3) What did I do to introduce the basics of how the iPod is operated in the beginning?
|Opening screen on iPod.|
we played with Google Earth. I only had 5 apps loaded on them the first time they got their iPods. The students found their homes by typing in their address, and then they found somewhere they went on summer vacation. This was really fun for the students!! We then explored the app homonyms because that was our focus in writing at that time. After that I allowed, the students to take their iPod home that night and explore everything. The next morning's conversation were amazing!!!
Question 4) Do the students have email and can they email to me?
Answer: This was a huge step for me because I chose to use the app Story Kit with my class because I love how the students can create their own story; however, I had to have them be able to email me their final story. See Hooray Email Finally Works for Story Kit! I am very excited now that I have email I believe that will open other apps for me to explore. The best part is that the students can only email me so it is locked and safe for them. The down side is that I can not email them back, but for right now I am happy with one way email.
I am sure there are many more questions, and I still have a million myself but that is why I love being apart of the blogging world. Thanks for asking great questions!!
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Million Dollar Questions
Friday, November 5, 2010
Poetry Friday is Delicious!
Last Friday was the first week the students spent the week looking through the poetry books in our classroom. This is a new idea this year that I am implementing. In past years, I have allowed 15-20 minutes every Friday for students to read and search for poems to share that specific Friday. But with this class, I believe they need the time to search but more important time to practice their poems when sharing them aloud with the class. For today's Poetry Friday, I know I have four different groups ready to share because they asked me to make copies of their poems so they could practice at home-there is the cherry!
Another group checked a poetry book out of the library on Tuesday found their poem on Wednesday asked me to copy the poem, and they have been practicing it the rest of the week. I think that is the hot fudge and finally the ice cream is the group of boys who will be singing from the Sipping Spiders Through a Straw. Poetry Friday is going to be delicious!
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Hooray! Email finally works for Story Kit
-Hooray now I can write more stories because I can send them to Mrs. Caplin.
-How did you do that graphic?
-Look how Bobby used figurative language.
-How did you mix the art tool with imported graphic?
-I can visualize that in my mind from the BIG words.
-Can we add background color to all the slides?
-Look at the lead that Cindy wrote-I am hooked.
-I went to the same place on vacation I think I will write my own story.
I now have all their digital stories on my own laptop. I will be able to assess them digitally and my goal is not to have to print them off. Also the coolest part in my opinion is next week, Mark is going to teach me how to download the stories to my district web page. We are going to put them on a password protected link so all the students will be able to see each other stories. What an amazing tool for them to see their friends stories as well as the parents will be able to read other students stories. I am so excited that the entire writing process from start to finish was completed on their iPod--can you tell?? On a side note, I would love to share some of the stories with the blogging world so I will be working on learning that process-keep checking back.