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Kidopo

What it is: Kidopo is an online coloring application where kids can color online coloring books.  The application simulates a real coloring experience (in other words you can color outside the lines and the more you color over a spot, the darker it gets.). There are a lot of coloring pages to choose from with categories like animals, cars and transportation, cartoons, food, toys, holidays, learning, circus, sports, music, nature, occupation, seasons, and more.  Kidopo has fun printables for the classroom including coloring sheets, bookmarks, birthday printables, awards and certificates, mazes, writing paper, connect the dots, room decorations, and stickers.  You will find a collection of flash games for kids including brain games, card/board games, math games, memory games, puzzle games, science games, and word games.  In the craft section of the website are videos that walk students step by step through a craft. How to integrate Kidopo into your curriculum: The online coloring book on Kidopo is a great way to help primary students practice mouse manipulation.  I like that you can color inside or outside of the lines just like in a real coloring book.  If you are in a computer lab setting, the Kidopo coloring book is a fun way for students to practice, and a good way for you to gauge where their fine motor skills are. The printables on Kidopo are perfect for the classroom.  Bookmarks are always fun classroom give aways and the awards and certificates are a good way to recognize your students. The learning games on Kidopo make a good practice center activity on classroom computers.  My favorite are the math games that help students with fact recall through fun arcade-type games.   In the word games, you will find a fun game called Word Frenzy that will give your students a place to practice typing.  Check out the games, some are better than others but they are definitely worth a look! Tips: One of the downfalls of Kidopo are the advertisements in the sidebar and introducing the games.  I use websites with this type of advertising to teach my students about how to spot ads and discuss with them why ads are placed on websites. Please leave a comment and share how you are using Kidopo in your classroom!

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The Future We Will Create: all the in-between important stuff

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Anastasis Academy, Apply, Character Education, collaboration, Create, Evaluate, Inquiry, inspiration, Middle/High School, professional development, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, TED Talk Tuesdays, Understand (describe, explain), video | Posted on 20-03-2013

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A few years ago I watched the documentary TED: The Future We Will Create.  Being a fan of TED talks, I was curious to learn more about the behind the scenes of TED talks and how the conference came to be.  I had heard snippets here and there that the TED conference was like a boys club…you had to have money and “be” somebody to get into a live event.  The documentary pulled back the curtain a little on the intentionality of the way that TED conferences are set up.  They are intentionally packed with entrepreneurs and successful people from various walks of life to bring together change makers.  The actual speakers may not be well known (at least not prior to the talk), they have a limited time to speak, and they share an inspirational message.  But TED isn’t really about the talks, TED is really about the talks that happen in between the talks.  It is about those serendipitous moments that happen when people are exposed to a shared inspiration and then have opportunity to dream about it together.  The magic is in those moments when people with different perspectives come together and share their thinking from that unique vantage point.  It is really about the in between moments, that seemingly empty and unimportant time.  TED does something else that I wasn’t aware of, they offer one TED speaker a “prize”.  Only the prize isn’t really a prize (not in the way we typically think about prizes), instead it is that this person gets to make a wish.  They get to cast a vision and a “what-if.”  They get to challenge the audience to solve a problem that matters to them.  Then comes the incredible part- these people actually use their unique gifts and talents and perspective to help make it so.  World changing.  A future that we create.  Together.

 

As I was pulling together resources for our current inquiry block about “sharing the planet,” I came across several fantastic TED talks that could act like a catalyst for deeper thinking and additional curiosity.  As I watched each video, I kept thinking about the behind the scenes, the in-between talks that aren’t documented.  The change happening as a result.

Then it hit me, we could do this at Anastasis.  We could watch these talks together, and then allow for the in-between talks.  We could be intentional and let our students engage in the discussion, the serendipitous moments of one thing leading to another, and another.  We could give our students time to just talk and wonder and discover together.  We could narrow it down to 3 or 4 TED talks and provide our students with serendipitous in-between.  We could open up the opportunity for our students to come up with the “wish” or challenge that the others would work to make happen.  We could empower our students to go through this same process and then watch them use their unique perspective, gifts and talents to find solutions and dream up new possibilities.

I’m excited to try this.  I believe that we are in the midst of genius every day at Anastasis.  These kids are really incredible.  I want to see what unfolds when we offer just a little inspiration related to our inquiry and then give them some space to just explore and talk.  I want them to see that when hunches collide, BIG world changing ideas happen.  I want them to understand that they are world changers.

Has anyone else done this with students?

I think that this will be a starting point.  For now we will watch talks.  Next year, I would love to have our students plan their own talks.  I want to invite the best-and-brightest from around the world to come listen to our talks.  I want to provide the in-between moments where change is enacted.

Stay tuned…

Comments (2)

Thanks so much for the behind the scences of TED information. That puts such a different perspective on how the video can be used. I love the idea of trying it with a class. Very interested as to how it goes and the chatter you observe from the students.

YES! I did TED talks with my 2nd/3rd graders this year. The 4/5 class did it as well. It was an amazing experience. My reflection on the process can be found here: http://bit.ly/Y5lZWo

I actually have an idea to collaborate with another school – feel free to contact me if you’re interested.

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