Sunday

My Top Three Digital End of the Year Projects

 My Top Three Digital End of the Year Projects

For me, it's about keeping the kids busy or they go WILD! My top 3 tips for surviving the end of the school year and keeping myself and my students sane...go digital.  My kids love working on the computer.  EdTech is the way to go!


Interactive Digital Bulletin Board

  • Padlet is a free to create and collaborate together.  Why not use it to create and interactive bulletin board?   Put a question in the middle:  What is your favorite moment from ___th grade? or What advice do you have for incoming __th graders?  Students can add comments and pictures.  Or you can add pictures and let them add comments.

End of year survey

  • You've all heard of Kahoot!, right?  I know you're thinking of it for games right?  Well, not use it as a fun way to survey your kids?  Ask them what worked, what didn't, you'll get a lot of useful information that will help with planning your next year.  And yes...it's free.  I don't like paying more for stuff if I don't have to.

Google My Maps


  • I know everyone has heard of Google maps but MyMaps is different. It's a way to create and share custom maps. There are a lot of ways to integrate it into lessons. In this case kids will be using it to create a map about Memorial Day. They have three project choices: one about the Civil War, one about current celebrations and one about overseas deployments. After they choose one to focus on, they research! Then they create a Google MyMap. Students can do it independently or collaboratively. I included directions on how to use MyMaps and how to find it!  Students will need Google accounts to have access to GAFE (Google Apps for Education).Have fun and enjoy! Great activity to close out the school year and build more appreciation for Memorial Day and our troops' service.  All the directions are here.  It's free on TPT.   

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This letter is...E!



Go to Ashley's blog for more great end of the year ideas...


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Thursday

EdTech: App Smashing

App Smashing!


At #CUE16, I learned about app smashing.  We all do it...just didn't know it had a name.  It's when you use more than one app to create a bigger or more complex project.  Here's a cute explanation:


App smashing works best with apps that allow you to save to the camera roll. For example, Tellagami.  You can create your Tellagami and input it into iMovie or something else.  

You could use your gami over a background to explain something and then upload it to YouTube.  That's app smashing.

Say you made a Periscope and saved it on Katch.  Then you downloaded that and save it onto YouTube.  That's app smashing.

Best apps for this?  Here is a list!

Tellagami- to create an avatar.  You can talk for it or type in the text.
Educreations- Like a digital whiteboard

Skitch- a different version of a digital whiteboard


Story Kit- Create a digital story book

These are just to get started.  Play around with them.  When you have the hang of it, do a search for app smashing!  You'll find a lot more out there.



Wednesday

Author Visit: Jennifer Nielsen


Author Visit!

We had the great honor of having the author, Jennifer Nielsen, come visit our school and talk to our fourth and fifth grade students.


She has a New York Times best-seller, The False Prince.  She gave us a quick synopsis.  Sounds fabulous.  Glad I bought it.                           

She also told us about Mark of the Thief and Scourge.  Quite a few of my kids said they were especially interested in Scourge!  I need to expand my class library...quick!
She is such an inspirational speaker.  She had a Powerpoint presentation.
My kids were enthralled!  She came because the Scholastic rep saw how excited my kids were about the book A Night Divided.  She organized it all.  Thank you!! Thank you!!  We can't thank Scholastic enough!


Here is a map showing how Germany was divided after WW2.  Some images from the wall.  Images of Gerta and Fritz from A Night Divided.





Here I am with Jennifer Nielsen!  I'm such a book/author groupie!   It was awesome!!!!



She signed books for all of us.  Teachers, kids, everyone!  A lot of us had purchased books so that we could get a personalized copy!


My signed copy!!!!


What a great opportunity for my kids.  To hear a real author in person and hear about her writing process.  They learned more about the background of A Night Divided and how she came to write this particular book.  If you get a chance at an author visit from her, jump on it!!

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