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Learning Clip

  What it is:  Learning Clip is a site that I reviewed in Nov. 2008 that I took another look at today and was even MORE impressed than I remembered being the first time I saw it.  Learning Clip is a collection of interactive whiteboard resources for primary math.  Resources and activities include...

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Fluency Finder App: Updated with new features!

Posted by admin | Posted in Classroom Management, Interactive book, iPod, Knowledge (remember), Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 21-08-2013

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Normally I post all of my app posts at my other blog, iPad Curriculum.  Because iDevices are becoming SO common place as a technology in the classroom, I’m going to start posting them here as well.  If you just want apps, head over to iPad Curriculum and you can search apps only!  Just like iLearn Technology, you can search any app by Bloom’s Taxonomy level.  All of the websites I share on iLearn Technology are completely FREE, the apps I review tend to be a mix of free and paid apps.  At the bottom of each post, I share the cost of the app.


Screen Shot 2013-03-04 at 2.29.31 PMFluency Finder

What it is: In the US it is back to school time!  I love these first days of school when you get to meet a new group of students and uncover their passions, strengths and weaknesses.  Fluency is one of those measures that is great to have from the beginning of the year because it means that we as teachers are armed with the background knowledge to help build reading confidence in students.   You can easily find and track fluency rates so that you have more time to help students strengthen reading skills and find books that are confidence-building and enjoyable for them.  I have written about Fluency Finder before (here), but I’m writing about it again because they have just come out with some great new features worth another mention!  Fluency Finder now has a data-sharing email function so that you can share fluency results with all stakeholders easily.  Comprehension questions have been built-in so now you have a one-step fluency and reading comprehension assessment.  Very handy!  Reading passages are being updated with a snapshot list so that you can quickly compare passages.  32 brand new passages are also being added from literary classics for 1st-8th grade reading levels.

 

I like Fluency Finder because of the way that it instantly calculates results and then stores them in your Student Record for instant access.  Really handy when you are in the library with students and want to quickly remind yourself of their current fluency levels to assist them in selecting the perfect, not-to-hard-book that will keep them reading with enjoyment.

How to integrate Fluency Finder app into the classroom:

Fluency Finder makes it simple to assess reading fluency in 1st-8th grade reading levels.  To get started:

  • Add students to the app
  • Select an appropriate grade level passage for the student to read
  • Print the passage from the www.fluencyfinder.com website (students could also read from their own iDevice or computer if you want to save paper)
  • Begin assessment, start the app timer as the student begins reading
  • Student will read from printed passage as you follow on your iDevice marking any mistakes
  • Tap the (+) button when student makes a reading mistake
  • Tap the (-) button if the student self-corrects a mistake
  • End the timer when the student finishes
  • Tap the “finish assessment” button to instantly see results

Now instead of focusing so much on keeping track of the fluency and score, you can focus on what actually matters: listening for fluency, comprehension and expression.

Being a paperless school, we are LOVING this option for helping students choose books that are at a level that is “just right.”  It gives us the opportunity to help students hunt down the perfect amount of challenge and really focus on a story they can love.  We are all about encouraging an absolute love of reading!

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Tips: Target Fluency Rates

First Grade: 60-70 wpm

Second Grade: 80-95 wpm

Third Grade: 100-120 wpm

Fourth Grade: 120-135 wpm

Fifth Grade: 130-145 wpm

Sixth Grade: 140-150 wpm

Seventh Grade: 150-160 wpm

Eighth Grade 160-175 wpm

Cost$6.99 (iTunes link)

Compatible with: iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 4.3 or later

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using  Fluency Finder in your classroom.

Neo K12

Posted by admin | Posted in Art, Fun & Games, Geography, History, Interactive Whiteboard, Internet Safety, Language Arts, Math, Middle/High School, Music, Phonics, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Teacher Resources, video, Video Tutorials, Web2.0, Websites | Posted on 01-03-2010

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What it is: Neo K12 is an outstanding online collection of educational videos, lessons and games for students in grades k-12.  Neo K12 believes that “kids learn best by ‘seeing’ the real world.”  They have created this site with that belief in mind.  Neo K12 has cataloged the best free online educational videos from the Internet in one place.  Each video is watched and reviewed by k-12 educators to ensure their accuracy and appropriateness for students.  Subjects include physical science, life science, human body, earth and space, social studies, math, English (including phonics, stories, and grammar), and fun videos such as time lapse, slow motion, arts and crafts, learn magic, music lessons, and sports lessons.   In addition to videos, Neo K12 has Web 2.0 tools.  The  School Presentation tool is a mashup of Flickr and Wikipedia, and allows users to create and share presentations online. To create a presentation, students choose pictures for their presentation from Flickr, read and article about the subject from Wikipedia, and then add text to their presentation.   When the presentation is finished, it can be printed or viewed online as a slideshow.  Quizzes, games, and puzzles on Neo K12 are an interactive way to improve learning.  Teachers can create and share videos playlists complete with notes and instructions for their students. 

How to integrate Neo K12 into the classroom: Videos provide excellent opportunities for learning, they make it possible for kids to visualize and build a model in their minds.  This helps them to better understand key concepts and can stimulate curiosity in a subject.  When students or teachers search a subject, they are given a list of related videos, quizzes, games, and puzzles.  When a teacher creates an account, they can create a complete assignment within Neo K12 that includes instructions and notes for the students.  Students can complete the assignment by watching videos, playing related games and creating a School Presentation that shows understanding.  The presentations are easy enough for even young students to create.  Primary students can skip reading the Wikipedia article and just choose pictures and add some captions about facts they learned from a video they viewed.  These videos are a great way to introduce new learning, expand on previous learning, or to spark curiosity in a topic.

Many of the educational games and puzzles would be great for an interactive whiteboard as whole class activities.  They could, of course, also be used as classroom center activities, or completed individually in the computer lab. The jigsaw puzzles can be used as teasers to introduce a new topic.  The jigsaw puzzles use incredible images from Flickr.  Have students take turns coming up to the interactive whiteboard to put puzzle pieces together.  Students waiting at their seats can take guesses about what new learning you will be doing in class.

Tips: Create a free Neo K12 account, you will receive a dashboard where you can store videos, games, presentations, quizzes, and add notes and instructions.  You get a unique URL for your dashboard to share.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Neo K12 in your classroom.

Crick Web Literacy Resources

Posted by admin | Posted in Interactive Whiteboard, Language Arts, Phonics, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Spelling, Teacher Resources, Websites | Posted on 03-10-2008

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What it is:   Crick Web Literacy Resource is an excellent collection of interactive games for language development and practice in students.  The resources are excellent for individual student play, literacy group student play, or whole classroom play with an interactive white board.   Games include hangman, alphabetical order, collective nouns, compound words, sticky letters, matching pairs, street scene labels, seaside postcard, spelling checker, story sequencer, instruction sequencer, verb links, word dice, spelling word tester and word selector.  Yes, it is a treasure trove of literacy activities!

 

How to integrate Crick Web Literacy Resources into the classroom:  The Crick Web Resources can be easily integrated into your current literacy curriculum as an enrichment.  The activities fit right along side lessons you are already teaching but make them interactive for students.  I really like the Word Dice activity because students (or teacher) can add their own words to the dice to roll them.  The dice would be great for teaching nouns and adjectives (or any part of speech) on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector.  The dice are also outstanding for playing games unique to your classroom (maybe one that you created!)  The Sticky letters lets students create their own word wall or can be used with a projector for a class word wall.  I was also very impressed with the Spelling Rule Tester which helps students learn the rule for making singular nouns plural.  Students can input their own singular nouns and type what they think the plural is and then click on the tester to see if they are correct.  Take a look at the activities and see how they fit into your curriculum… my guess is that you will find at least one keeper in the group!

 

Tips:  If the Crick Web Literacy Resources look too difficult for your students, click on the Key Stage 1 tab at the top of the site for additional resources for younger students.

 

 

Leave a comment and share how you are using Crick Web Literacy Resources in your classroom.

Childtopia Games

Posted by admin | Posted in Fun & Games, Language Arts, Math, Phonics, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Websites | Posted on 29-01-2008

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What it is: Childtopia is like 10 websites in one…they have so many cool things going on that I am going to break it down into sections so stay tuned… Childtopia Games is the biggest section with games that are psychologist recommended. Games include: memory games, language, math, skill, creativity, and observation. Each game is broken down by age group making it appropriate for three to nine year olds to play. Games are fun and interactive and reinforce skills that children are learning at school and at home. There are 1400+ games on this site and can be played in 5 languages! The site is completely free but they also offer a CD version available for purchase.

How to integrate Childtopia Games into the classroom: Childtopia Games are fun and interactive. With 1400 games to choose from you are bound to find one that fits the skill you are working on in any subject area. The games are truly great played individually, as a center, or at home for reinforcement. Childtopia Games are perfect for students who need remedial work. This site is easy for students to navigate and very user friendly.

Tips: This is one that you will want to bookmark for easy access!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Childtopia Games in your classroom.