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Learn English Kids

What it is: Learn English Kids is a website especially for students who are learning English or need some remedial help in language development.  Created by the British Council, Learn English Kids has fun games, songs, stories, and offline activities to help students learn English.  All of the activities are created so that they can be done independently or with family members or friends.  In the listen and watch section of the site are animated stories and songs, many have accompanying activities to use in the classroom.  There are also videos and online activities designed to build listening skills and comprehension.  In the read write section are downloadable materials designed to help develop reading and writing skills.  The make section features online activities in which students can create something.  There are also arts and crafts directions to download and videos of children creating things.  In the explore section are additional resources and websites for English language learners. The game section features several games broken down into language games, fun with English, little Kids games, and games to play with friends.  Students learn basic English vocabulary, alphabetical order, phoneme matching (matching phoneme to its sound), hieroglyphics, months in a year, famous landmarks, seasons, recycling, ancient Egypt, animal habitats, around the world, bugs, Chinese New Year, Christmas, cities, colors, computers, countries, currency, daily routines, days of the week, dinosaurs, directions, environment, fairy tales, food, Great Barrier Reef, health, holidays, human body, maps, money, nature, numbers, Olympic games, pets, planets, plants, school, solar system, space, sports, technology, weather, just to name a few. How to integrate Learn English Kids into the classroom: Learn English Kids is a comprehensive resource that can be used in your classroom in a variety of ways.  The site was designed specifically for English Language Learners (or ESL students) but is appropriate for primary students or students who need some remedial language building.  The site has been created to be navigated and used independently and many of the activities would be perfect as a center that students can visit.  The games are outstanding for vocabulary and language building.  Listen and Watch has an impressive collection of songs that are traditional children tunes like Hickory, dickory dock, teaching songs that help students remember things like months in a year, and themed songs.  Each song is accompanied by a pdf of the lyrics and a print activity.   There are several well made short stories for your students to read along with.  The animated stories can be read with or without audio.  Each story comes with the ability to print and includes accompanying activity suggestions.  Kids Talk features videos of kids answering a variety of questions.  The Listen and Watch section also has a place for students to practice their listening skills.  Students watch an animated video and listen to what the characters say.  Then they are asked to interact with the activity according to what they heard.  These activities are great for ELL, but would also be excellent for students with sensory integration problems.  In the Read and Write section, students read a passage and are given follow up questions that they can write about themselves.  These would make an excellent writing center for students who need some prompting to write.  In the Create section students can create online stories, characters, etc.  There are also some offline printable activities and suggestions of things to create.  This site features so many great resources, it will keep you ready with activities for your students.  Every one of the activities/songs/read alongs are high quality and engaging.  Students will love this site!  I cannot stress enough that this site has something for every student, not just English Language Learners.  My kindergarten and first grade students really enjoy using this site. Tips: This site could take you hours to explore to find all of it’s hidden treasures.  If you are looking for a specific game, story, or topic, you may want to click on “Site Map” at the very bottom of the webpage.  Here you can sort through all of the resources by topic, finding exactly what you need quickly.  What a great website!! Be sure to check out the Teacher page where you will find lesson plans, resources, and guidance for teaching your ELL students. Leave a comment and share how you are using Learn English Kids in your classroom.

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Hour of Code: 30 ways to get your students (k-12) coding! #hourofcode

Posted by admin | Posted in Anastasis Academy, Apply, Art, collaboration, Create, Download, Fun & Games, Interactive Whiteboard, iPod, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, professional development, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Technology, video, Video Tutorials, web tools, Web2.0, Websites | Posted on 09-12-2013

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What it is: This week is Hour of Code week! From December 9- December 15, Code.org is hosting an event to introduce students everywhere to computer sciences.  The event is super flexible, you can plan your hour anywhere it fits in your schedule this week.  Code.org has MORE than enough resources, videos, activities to get you going, but these days there are all kinds of great resources to help you bring programming and the Hour of Code into your classroom.  The best part is, there is no previous coding experience required, really!

I can’t tell you how rewarding and exciting it is to learn something alongside your students.  It is such a neat thing for your students to see you as a learner (without all of the answers) and discover learning together.  This is rewarding in ways you may not have experienced before.

How lead your student (school) in the Hour of Code Week: First: sign up for the Hour of Code week at Code.org.  This leads you to fantastic tutorials for the learner.

  • Check out the tutorials and pick one for your class. Tutorials are available in a variety of languages!
  • I like to go through the tutorial once on my own so that I have some background information before diving right in with students.
  • Test tutorials on the devices students will use during the Hour of Code (there is nothing worse than planning everything only to learn you don’t have the correct plugin!)

Next decide if your students will be going through the tutorial on their own, in partners, or as a class.  This probably depends on what devices you have available for your students.  Don’t let a lack of devices keep you from participating!  Students can work together on classroom computers (maybe as a center where groups visit the computer together for an hour. A new group can visit the center each day of the week.) If you don’t have reliable classroom computers, or the ability for students to work independently in a one to one setting, think about working as a whole class using an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computer.  If you suffer from low bandwidth (the worst!) you can even opt to download the tutorials so that you are watching them locally.

Have fun learning together! It is okay to say, “I don’t know.” As I said above, it is truly such a cool experience to learn with your students.

Hour of Code-30 ways to engage your students!

Although Code.org is hosting the Hour of Code, you aren’t limited to the resources you find there.  Below I’ve listed some of our favorite places to learn about coding at Anastasis Academy:

  1. Codecademy (this was where Team Anastasis started our first year during Crave classes. I learned right along with them! I can’t tell you the number of times I said, “I don’t know, let’s see if anyone on Twitter can help.” GREAT experience! The kids loved the game nature of learning to code and the immediate gratification of moving to the next level.)
  2. Codecademy: Hour of Code this is available as an app on the iPhone (can also be downloaded for iPad at the phone resolution)
  3. Squad is a free collaborative code editor.  With Squad, students can access the code they are writing anywhere there is an Internet connection. This means that students can chat and edit files together no matter where they are.
  4. Tynker- This is one that I wrote about just the other day…cannot wait to use it!
  5. Romo- This is a robot that helps teaches the basics of programming. I adore this little robot. It is adorable and fairly affordable if you already have an iPhone/iPod that you are willing to let kids use.
  6. Bootstrap- This is an awesome resource for middle and high school students.  It teaches students algebraic and geometric concepts through computer programming.  Different from other resources, this one begins with the math in mind and shows students practical application of what they are learning in algebra/geometry as you go.  Very cool!
  7. Scratch- from MIT, this is a great place to start…a long time winner for sure!
  8. Stencyl- is game creation software with a visual interface that lets students publish their creations for any platform.
  9. Game Salad- similar to Stencyl, this free download lets students create games visually and publish their creation on multiple platforms.
  10. Hackety Hack!- with this download kids can learn the basics of Ruby on Rails programming language.
  11. Code Monster- great beginner interface for kids to learn the basics of programming through a step-by-step online guide.
  12. Hopscotch- Coding for kids in a visual programming language. Hopscotch is an app for the iPad and FREE!
  13. Move the Turtle- Another app for the iPad that teaches programming visually. This one is $2.99
  14. Treehouse- Free app for the iPad that teaches programming and design from 1000 videos, practice modules, etc.
  15. Cato’s Hike Lite- This is a programming and logic odyessy for kids. This is a great place for kids to learn the basics. The lite version linked here is free, the full version is $4.99
  16. CProgramming- an iPad guide to programming in C. This app features a conversational style with visual explanations and is probably best for older student. The hosts sing badly, tell cheesy jokes, and include ridiculous pop culture references.  All of this adds up to a fun way to learn. $5.99
  17. Codea- an iPad app that fills in the gaps of your lack of programming knowledge with visual interface. $9.99
  18. KineScript Lite- visual programming for kids to learn to code and share it with others. A great starting point! Free!  Full version is $1.99
  19. Dynamic Art Lite- Another iPad based graphical programming option for kids. This one lets students create amazing animation and artwork with a drag/drop set of blocks. Free! Full version is $2.99
  20. Kodable is a free iPad game that offers a kid-friendly introduction to programming concepts and problem solving. (The pro version is on SUPER SALE for the Hour of Code week- 90% off!)
  21. Java Tutorial: Learn Java quickly with this iPad app from Udemy for older students. Free
  22. Light-bot Hour of Code- A free iPad app that introduces kids that have absolutely NO experience programming but can immediately use programming logic in this fun game.
  23. Daisy Dinosaur- a fantastic and free basics of programming app that features an adorable dinosaur named Daisy. The visual interface is great and teaches students the basics of objects, sequencing, loops, and events by solving the app’s challenges. (This is a favorite!)
  24. Bot Bat- a free iPad app that lets students design their own robot tank to do battle, they use visual programming to tell the bot what to do.
  25. Codi Animation- an iPad app where students can create animation for their own iOS app. $.99
  26. Chip Bots- a free iPad app that lets students design and program their own robot using chip-based programming environments.
  27. Circuit Coder- an iPad game and simulator for building digital circuits $1.99
  28. Lego Mindstorms Fix the Factory- I don’t know about you, but our youngest students are LEGO crazy. They would be all over this free iPad app that teaches the basics of programming language.
  29. TouchLogo is an ipad game that introduces programming to young children (even preschoolers could use this one!) $2.
  30. Last but certainly not least, Code.org. A fantastic site for all things code and lots of goodies just for educators!

 

iLearn Technology- Romotive robot

Tips: There are lots of videos and printouts for the Hour of Code that you can use to inspire some excitement about this fun day! You will even find links for letters to send home, to your administration, even the government!

What are you doing for your Hour of Code?  What fun things do you have planned?

Comments (2)

Hi,
It’s great thing that you are included Ruby On Rail. And Ruby is the leading language among all the other programming languages today. And through Ruby On Rails Outsourcing you can build rich and dynamic web applications.

I was surprised at not seeing Alice.org a free program from Carnegie Mellon.

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