Featured Post

Number Gym

Number Gym is math software that can be purchased for the math classroom.  However, they have a number of free online activities (examples of their software) that are perfect in the math classroom.  I want to review each of these freebie mini-math games: Exploring Fractions What it is:   Exploring Fractions is an interactive way for students to learn about fractions.  Students see the fractions represented graphically and numerically.  As students change the numerator and denominator of the fraction, they see the graphic change accordingly. How to integrate Exploring Fractions into the classroom:  Exploring Fractions is a great interactive site to teach your students about fractions.  This is a wonderful website to use with an interactive whiteboard for whole class fraction instruction.  Invite students up to the whiteboard to take turns adjusting the numerator and denominator of the fractions.  Have students observe the graphic changes taking place and describe the changes as a class.  Exploring Fractions is also very useful as a math center on the classroom computers.  As students are learning about fractions, they can visit the computer as a visual manipulation center.   Tips:  All parts of the Exploring Fractions website can be hidden (hide the numerator, denominator, or graphic).  This is a nice feature for having students “fill in” the missing information.   Mr G’s Place Value Chart What it is:   Mr G’s Place Value Chart is a great mini-site to teach students about place values.  The chart has a thousands, hundreds, tenths, and ones column.  Students can drag counters up and down the chart to create numbers.  Every portion of the Place Value Chart can be hidden from view depending on what you are using the chart for. How to integrate Mr G’s Place Value Chart into the classroom:  The Place Value Chart is an excellent visual manipulative to teach students about place value.  Each time a student moves a counter, the number at the top of the screen adjusts accordingly.  Use the Place Value Chart to teach your whole class with an interactive whiteboard.  Call students one at a time to adjust the number with counters.  Encourage students who are at their seats to observe how the numbers change.  Hide the number at the top and have students move counters and say what the number is aloud as a class.  This is also a great mini-site to set up as a math center in the one or two computer classroom.  As students are working on place value, they can visit the math center for a visual manipulative.     Tips:  Hide the columns that are not being used to teach with so students aren’t confused by all the ‘extras’.   Bond Builder What it is:   Bond Builder is a mini-game that gives students a ‘dot spotter’ that looks like a dice, students add the numbers on the dot spotter and drag it to the correct sum on a dial.  They are timed as they drag the dot spotter cards to the correct location. How to integrate Bond Builder into the classroom:  Bond Builder is a fun basic addition or counting reinforcement game. This game could be played as a center activity in the one or two computer classroom or whole class with an interactive whiteboard.  See who can get the fastest time and practice those addition facts at the same time!     Tips:  There are two levels of dot spotters (really just different sets of dot spotter cards).     Table Extender What it is:   Table Extender is a multiplication game that gives students a challenging multiplication problem and asks them to drag the problem on top of the correct answer.  Students are timed as they go through the various challenges. How to integrate Table Extender into the classroom:   Table Extender is a  good way to get students practicing their multiplication.  It makes them think quickly and attempt to beat their own fastest times.  Split students into teams and take turns sending students to the interactive whiteboard to solve the problems.  This mini-game would also make for good practice as a computer center in the classroom.     Tips:  There are three different levels of Table Extender for students to work on. Getting to Grips with Graphs: Trigonometry What it is:   Getting to Grips with Graphs: Trigonometry lets students explore the equation y=aSin(bx*+c*) through adjustments to a, b, and c in graphical form. How to integrate Getting to Grips with Graphs: Trigonometry into the classroom:   This mini-site is a wonderful visual representation of Sin.  Students can adjust a, b, and c and watch the affect of changing numbers on a graph.  Use an interactive whiteboard and call students up to change the values of a, b, and c.  Encourage other students to observe and describe the changes of each value that is adjusted.   Tips:  The scale of the graph can be changed to fit your classroom needs. Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Number Gym  in your classroom.

Read More

PlanbookEdu: Lesson Plans in the Cloud

Posted by admin | Posted in Classroom Management, iPod, professional development, Teacher Resources, web tools | Posted on 06-07-2011

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


What it is: Planbook EDU is a great cloud-based (a.k.a online) lesson plan book.  Because Planbook EDU is hosted in the cloud, all you need is an Internet connection, your plans travel with you.   Planbook EDU is listed in the Google Apps Marketplace and is a natural fit for schools already using Google apps for education (email, calendar, documents, etc.).  The free version of Planbook EDU has nothing to install, let’s teachers access their planbook from any internet connection, is easy to use with word processor like editing, is fully customizable, works in all major web browser and is iPad/iPhone supported (word processor editing doesn’t work on these devices).

How to integrate Planbook EDU into the classroom: I am a big fan of organizational tools, they let me organize my thoughts so that in the fire hose of ideas what is important (the learning goal) doesn’t get lost. Planbook EDU is a simple way to organize and plan units and your school year.  I love that it is cloud-based so that I can access my plans from anywhere and any time.  The basic features are robust enough to get your planning in place and the extras that can be added on make it VERY useful.

The premium version allows you to embed your planbook directly in your classroom website…very handy for keeping students and parents up to date with what is coming!

Tips: For $25/year, you get all of the free features plus- attach files to lesson plans, assign Common Core Standards, embed your planbook on any website, share lesson plans with anyone, print from your browser, export to Microsoft Word or PDF, built-in spell check and enjoy access to unlimited planbooks each school year.  EVERY user gets a free 14 day trial of all the premium options from Planbook EDU.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using PlanbookEDU  in your classroom!


Comments (8)

Thanks for the great post.

If anyone has any questions or comments about PlanbookEdu feel free to contact me directly.

Matt Curry
Founder, PlanbookEdu

I have been using this tool for over a year and love it. I have the premium version and it has been a life saver. Don’t know how I did it without it.

[…] Planbook EDU by clicking here!!For a more detailed review be sure to check out the award nominated iLearn Technology!! Posted by dkapuler at 7/06/2011 Labels: lesson […]

Thanks! As someone who hates writing lesson plans, this makes my life so much easier! I love the fact that I can add files. Will let you know how it works out when the new school year begins.

Thanks for the input from someone who has been using it Kathleen. We could all use more of those tools that make life easier!

I’ve always liked PlanbookEDU.

It is one of the best of its kind, but a few more options can be seen here…


Third-year teacher and first time user of both Planbookedu and Edublogs. I am going to try to convert as many people as possible to both services, as they add value, are efficient, and affordable. My real curiosity is how well my entire year’s planbook will copy to next year with slightly different start dates and holidays. If it goes smooth, this thing could be a must-have for every teacher.

Best thing I ever bought for my classroom!

Write a comment