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Showing posts from August, 2013

Day 9 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic - Listening Post

When I planned out the 20 day challenge I grabbed a bunch of differnt ways I'd used tech in my classroom and dumped them into a list.  Listening post was one of these ideas however I think it needs to be extended a bit.  So today's challenge needs to be a little more than just creating a listening post why not have a look at how you use audio throughout the school day both inside and outside your classroom?

I've collected lots of ideas below that I hope will be useful in infusing some tech into the way you use audio in your class....

Listening Post 
I'm sure you've seen the old style rather expensive listening posts, these are great for sharing audio with a small group of students that doesn't disrupt the whole class.  I've also used the Belkin Rockstars in a similar way.  You could use a listening post to:

Listen to journal stories (audio for many is provided by MOE in New Zealand)Listen to stories recorded by other children in the class or school or your bl…

Day 8 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic - Connect

Finally up to date again... here's today's quick challenge :) 

Connecting with others is not only useful in terms of learning but it's exciting.  Learning about and getting to know other people is a rewarding experience and one I've found motivates even the most reluctant students in a classroom.  Today's challenge is to look at how your classroom connects.  How do you share the learning you're doing with the outside world? Not just your student's parents and families but the wider community, country and even further afield.  Think about what you're currently learning, how could you enhance this by connecting with experts? other classrooms? other teachers? ….?

Here are just a few ideas on how you can start to build connections:

Great for getting in touch with other classes and teachers.  There's also the option of participating in a project or two. 

Check out this list of NZ teachers and facilitators on Twitter.  There's also a great lis…

Day 7 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic - Writing

Better late than never :)  here's the next instalment of the challenge... Day 7....

Do you have learners in your classroom that struggle with writing?  I've found when teaching that for students there seems to be something magical about being given a device to write with rather than just their writing book and a pen. 

So the challenge today is to look at your writing programme and to add tech to it if you haven't already or re-visit it and use the SAMR model to think about what level your writing with tech is currently on and how you can change it. 

Here are a few ideas I've come across….

The literacy shed
One of my favourites.  This site has a collection on plenty of videos with ideas for lesson plans to go with them. This resources is definitely worth a look! 

iPad apps 
There are plenty of books out there that have been converted into iPad apps, these would be great starting points for writing.  Some of my favourites are There's a Monster at the End…

Day 6 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic Maths Warm Up

Apologies this post is a few days late... more catch up posts coming soon! 

Day 6 Maths Warm up
Wahoo!  We've made it through the first week of our 20 day tech challenge!  
Today's challenge is all about Maths… We're starting simple by looking at your warm up or headwork or both, basically how you start off your maths lesson using tech.  

In the past I've created a file using IWB software and loaded this onto all the computers in the classroom as soon as the bell rung after morning tea (this is when I did maths) the students new to come straight in and get on with the activities on that file.  

There was a wide range of activities available to them.  Students were responsible for recording which ones they completed each day.  The IWB I had at the time was a Mimio the file is in the folder I created for this challenge on Google Drive.  I've also used similar warmups with ActivInspire they're in the folder as well.  

Of course you could just add a page to your wikispac…

Day 5 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic - Reading To

Day 5 Reading To
A short and sweet post today....everyone loves hearing stories, children especially.  Sitting down and reading a book to a child can't ever be replaced by technology.  However there are a few great apps and websites that can enhance the listening experience.  Today's challenge is about getting more out of reading to your class by using technology.  

Here are a few ideas to help you to do that:

ActivinspireGet a student or students (if you have dual pen capabilities) to record a mind map of the story.  You could pause after each chapter and reflect on what you've learnt about character, setting, problem etc.   This mind map can continue to be added to as you move through the story.  I wouldn't make it a huge thing just a few ideas jotted down after you finished your read to for the day.  At the end of the story you can share this map via your class blog. 

I've done a non-tech version of this where the students used felt pens and paper to record their ow…

Day 4 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic - All in One Place

Day 4 All in One Place
How are you finding the challenge?  Is it useful?  Please add a comment to any of the posts letting me know what's been helpful / not helpful.  

It's really easy with tech especially what you and you students create online to have 10-15 different tools you use regularly and therefore 10-15 different websites to visit with 10-15 different usernames and passwords. Some students find it hard enough remembering where they put their sweatshirt and shoes, there is noway they're going to remember all those different web addresses.  So todays challenge is to get all of those tools into one place.  Like the previous 3 challenges and those to come there are many different ways you could do this I've just listed a few below:

- Free (if you want to make a page public however it will cost $1 to verify it)
- Forum space behind each page
- powerful
- private and/or public spaces

Here are some examples of how I've used Wikispaces before:
Junk to Funk Journ…

Day 3 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic Rewind

Day 3 Rewind
Following on from yesterday, today's challenge looks at being able to rewind student learning. The idea is that without tech rewinding learning is limited to whatever you've written down during a lesson, with tech you can replay everything that was said during the lesson as well as seeing what was written down.  There are plenty of different ways of recording learning so that students can revisit it, I've detailed a few below...

Screen Recorders:
Activinspire has one of these built in, why not try turning it on for part of a lesson.  Maybe you could…. record a brainstorming session? A problem solving session in maths? or perhaps a handwriting lesson?  

Here is a Youtube clip I found that explains how to use this feature in Activinspire.

Other apps that do similar things are:
For Mac...
- Quicktime
Open quicktime and select file then new screen recording.  From there you can select an area of the screen to record.  

For Windows...
-   CamStudio
I hav…

Day 2 of 20 Days to Tech-Tastic - Memories

Day 2

If you would like to follow along with my 20 Days to Tech-Tastic teacher technology challenge click here for more details.

Yesterday we looked at creating morning activities to put the tech in your classroom to good use before the bell goes.  I've added a Flipchart to the 20 Days folder on Google Drive called Beginning of Day. It's one of the Flipcharts I used in a year 2-3 classroom.    

Do you remember what you did when you were at primary school?  I still have a few memories the most vivid ones are those I have photos for there aren't too many photos of me at primary school.  Wouldn't it be great to be able to remember more of what you experienced, how you changed from one year to the next?

Today's challenge is all about creating memories for you and your class. There are hundreds of ways you could do this and I'm not about to list them all.  Here are just a few that I thought would be useful ….

This Ted talk is worth having a look at as well as the acco…

Day 1 of 20 Days to Tech - Tastic - Morning Activities

Day 1

Are you ready to accept the 20 Days to Tech-Tastic technology challenge? If you're keen you can find more details here.

Day 1 is all about setting up morning activities.  Of course these can be both tech and non-tech but we're doing a technology challenge so ... what you can do to get the best out of the technology available in your classroom before the bell goes at 9am?

Here are a few ideas I jotted down for morning routines in your classroom.

When I had my own class I found the time before the first bell to be great for getting tech ready for the day and squeezing in a few little things we just couldn't get done during the day.

I took time to train a few of my early bird students on how to complete each of our morning activity, this meant I was free to continue with other setup around the classroom and it also gave these students a bit of a leadership role.  I kept the tasks really simple and built on them throughout the year.

Todays challenge is to get some activ…