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Story Top

  What it is:  Story Top is a simple comic strip creator.  Students can create an account on Story Top where they can save, share with classmates, and print out comic strips that they create.  Students can choose from a set selection of backgrounds, images, and text bubbles (they aren’t able to upload their own images).  Using the Story Top clip art and backgrounds, students can create a fun comic strip about almost any topic with a simple drag-and-drop interface. How to integrate Story Top into the classroom:  Comic strips are an outstanding way to get your reluctant writers writing (especially boys!)   The comic format usually isn’t as daunting as a blank piece of paper.  With just a little guidance, your students will be writing and creating comic strips in no time!  Use Story Top as a classroom computer writing center where students can take turns publishing their own comic strips (these are fun to use in a class newsletter home at the end of the week or on a classroom website).  In the computer lab setting, give students a topic and have them create a comic strip based on the topic.  Story Top would also be excellent to use with a projector or an interactive whiteboard.  Instead of giving your students a bulleted list of notes to copy down on a subject, why not make it fun and create a comic strip that includes all of the notes.    Comics are a fun way to mix up the classroom routine and students are much more likely to remember the material if it is presented this way.  Happy creating!   Tips:  To use your comic strips on your classroom website or in a newsletter, take a screen shot of the strip to save it as a picture file on your computer (on a Mac it is command+shift+4).    Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Story Top in your classroom.

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Beyond Lockdown: Invitation for #Colorado educators to join for FREE

Posted by admin | Posted in General | Posted on 02-01-2014

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I’ve been radio silent in the blogging world since the shooting at Arapahoe high school. It hurts. I hate that this has happened again. I hate that the waiting to hear from former students felt so familiar. I ache that all kids live in a world where school isn’t always a safe place. The week before the shooting at Arapahoe, the kids at Anastasis were creating bracelets, paper airplanes, and a video for the Sandy Hook community and I wrote this post on our school blog.

It’s hard to write about new technology finds and educational tools when you ache for your community, when lives have been forever altered and two families have to learn how to exist differently. Despite the pain and sadness, there is also a time of healing. I’ve been incredibly proud of the Arapahoe community who IS warrior strong. The Colorado community has once again rallied and has come with an outpouring of love, support for one another, and healing together.

One of my friends on Twitter, @LauraScheer, contacted me following the shooting at Arapahoe, and extended an amazing gift through a friend of hers.  A private “Beyond Lockdown” training for the Anastasis staff and 15 of our Colorado friends.  TAC ONE consulting is providing their “Beyond Lockdown” training course for free.  This training has been designed to help prepare school faculty with an aggressive response to an active gunman. During this course, we will learn to: understand the “active shooter” and identify active shooter incidents/trends, identify current mainstream practices and shortfalls, acquire basic understanding of firearms, understand new aggressive action plans, and receive training and recommendations.

The class is being held on Saturday Jan. 11, 2014 from 12:30-4:30 in Centennial.  We want to invite 15 of our Colorado teaching friends to join us for FREE.  If you are interested, please contact me in the comments below OR on Twitter @ktenkely and I will get you complete details.  This training is typically costly, this is an amazing gift from TAC Consulting trainer Joe Deedon!

It makes me sad that we live in a world where this type of training is becoming a necessity. I’m thankful for people like Laura and Joe who make it available in a time of need and prepare us accordingly. I hope that you won’t assume that this could never happen at your school.  I hope our Colorado friends will take us up on this offer. I pray that none of us will ever need to put this training to use.

Comments (1)

I read your blog and saw the invitation for “Beyond Lockdown”. I would be very interested in attending.

Thanks for sharing your blog!

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