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57 Ways to Celebrate National Literacy Day

Did you know that today is National Literacy Day?  It is!  I think that literacy is something to celebrate, being literate is a gift I enjoy every day but don’t stop to appreciate nearly enough.  In honor of National Literacy Day, I thought I would share my favorite technology enhanced...

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Timelapse: 3 decades of photo imagery of the world

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Evaluate, History, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Understand (describe, explain), video, Virtual Field Trips, Websites | Posted on 20-01-2014

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Timelapse: a satellite veiw of the earth (iLearn Technology)

What it is:  Timelapse is an incredible visual satellite timeline powered by Google.  Timelapse is about as close as you can get to a time machine, if that time machine hovered above the earth and gave you a bird’s eye view of development and change. Students can choose from some highlighted Timelapse views including: Las Vegas, Dubai, Shanghai, Oil Sands, Mendenhall Glacier, Wyoming Coal, Columbia Glacier, and Lake Urmia.  Alternatively, students can use the search box to view a satellite timelapse of any place in the world. Students can change the speed of the timelapse, pause the satellite imagery, and zoom in or zoom out.  The imagery begins in 1984 and goes through 2012.

How to use Timelapse in your classroom: Timelapse would be a fantastic way to begin an inquiry unit. The site itself sparks lots of questions.  Depending on the location, students may inquire into climate change, history, development, expansion, human impact on land, satellites, etc. Timelapse could also be used in science classes and history classes. This is a great tool for students to use to analyze and evaluate visual data.

Timelapse would be a neat way to explore history of the world from a completely different perspective.  Students could use Timelapse as a creative writing prompt to imagine the world from a new perspective. What changes when you aren’t down in the midst of life on earth? Do problems appear different? Does success get measured differently?

Tips: Below the Timelapse map, students can read about how satellites are used to capture the imagery they are exploring. Well worth the read!  It is also separated into “Chapters” that each tell a larger story about the featured Timelapses.

 

Degree Story Teacher Contest

Oxford Owl Maths: math ebooks, activities

Posted by admin | Posted in Interactive book, Interactive Whiteboard, Knowledge (remember), Math, Primary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 24-07-2013

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iLearn Technology Oxford Owl Math ebooksWhat it is: Oxford Owl is the awesome site I wrote about yesterday.  They have a fantastic collection of free ebooks and accompanying activities for kids.  The site is making an appearance in today’s post because they ALSO have Oxford Owl Math for ages 3-7.  There isn’t quite the breadth of resources here that you will find on the main Oxford Owl site, but they do have some great suggestions for math activities, both online and offline, and there are some online math e-books.  The 3-5 section currently has the most e-books, online math games, activity sheets that can be printed out, and offline games to play.

How to integrate Oxford Owl Maths into the classroom:  Oxford Owl Maths has some wonderful math themed interactive ebooks that include practice with position words, counting, shapes, time, and adding/subtracting.  The ebooks make for a great introduction or review in the kindergarten and first grade classrooms.  The telling time ebook and activities are even appropriate for second grade students.  In the kids treasure box, students can collect online trophies for the games and puzzles they complete, find recipes to make in the kitchen, and download offline activities.

Oxford Owl would be a nice center activity that even the youngest students could explore independently or with a partner.  It could also be used for whole class stories with an interactive whiteboard or projector.

This is a good site to introduce parents to for at home reading, play and math practice.  If you have a classroom website, Oxford Owl is a great one to link to!

Tips: If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the Oxford Owl Literacy site.

Tell us how you are using (or plan to use) Oxford Owl Maths in your classroom!

Here is Today: a web app to put time in perspective

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Character Education, Evaluate, History, Inquiry, Interactive Whiteboard, Language Arts, Math, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 10-07-2013

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Here is today iLearn Technology

Here is today iLearn Technology

Here is today iLearn Technology

What it is:  Here is today is an interesting little web app that helps students visualize time in a new way.  Students start out by seeing a square and a title that says “here is today” with the current date.  When students click “okay” at the bottom, they are taken to a visual of the next step in.  Students can see where the day is falling within the month, the year, the century, the millennium, the epoch, the period, the era, the eon, the earth, life, oxidation, fish, insects, reptiles, mammals, birds, humans, and the universe.  Each stage of the graphic has an arrow pointing out how today (whatever day that happens to be) compares in the grander scheme of things.  Pretty cool!

How to integrate Here is Today into the classroom:  Here is Today is an outstanding way to help students understand where they are in place in time.  They can see where they are and then compare it to the larger history of the world and universe.  Obviously, this is a natural fit into a history or biology class.  Here is Today would also make a great object lesson in math and be great for studying comparison and scale.  It would also make for a great philosophical discussion as we realize just how minute the moment we are living in really is.

Here is Today is a great site for students to explore and inquire about independently.  What questions arise as they explore the site?  After students have investigated and come up with their own lines of inquiry, gather back as a classroom community and discuss those lines of inquiry and the thinking that led to them.  If you happen to follow the IB Primary Years Program, this fits in great to “Where are we in place and time” inquiry.

Here is Today would also be a useful visual on an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computer where a class can observe and explore together during discussion.  The way that the site compares time is seriously smart.

Here is Today could launch an interesting creative writing assignment.  Invite each student to explore the site and to choose a view.  The story should be written based on the point of view and time that they chose.  This could be a new way to explore setting, time and theme.

Tips:  Here is Today reminds me a little bit of the Scale of Life site that I wrote about here.  Using these sites together could be pretty epic.  Talk about a great sense of our place in the universe!

Are you using Here is Today in your classroom?  Share your experience in the comments below!

Living Math Book List: Fiction for (almost) every math concept

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Knowledge (remember), Language Arts, Math, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), web tools | Posted on 03-01-2012

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Happy New Year!!  You may have noticed…I took a tech break for the holidays!  There may not have been an abundance of posts and sharing happening, but I was still collecting away and have more resources than ever to share in 2012.  Thank you all for making my 2011 such a wonderful year to be a part of!

What it is:  You know what I love?  Reading and books. Particularly fiction.  Living Math Book List is a fantastic site that introduces books (mostly fiction) for every math concept (okay, almost every math concept!).  The site is SO easy to use, just click on the “Search categories” tab and choose the math topic your students are working on.  A list of books with links to Amazon is at the ready.  The site is being updated regularly so new books pop into the different categories on occasion.  Isn’t it great to stumble on a new jem-of-a-book that you can use in your classroom? I love teaching through story, and Living Math Book List makes it easy to bring stories into your math class.  Including books in math gives students who struggle with math concepts a new vantage point and understanding.  It makes math meaningful by showing students why they learn the math concepts they do and how math really is all around us.  You have to love that!  Topics include: addition, angles, area, calendars, capacity, combinations, comparisons, counting, skip counting, data collection, division, doubling numbers, equal sets, equations, estimation, even/odd, fractions, graphing, making predictions, matching, measurement, metrics, money, multiplication, negative numbers, opposites, ordinal numbers, patterns, percentages, perimeter, place value, positional words, probability, problem solving, proportions, ratio, reading a schedule, regrouping, rounding, sequences, shapes, sizes, sorting, subtraction, symmetry, time, and weight.  So yeah, something for everyone!
How to integrate Living Math Book List into the classroom:  As I said, I am a big fan of reading and books.  Any time you can tie learning back to story is a win in my book.  Use the books you find on Living Math Book List to introduce new concepts, to enrich students interaction with a concept, as a launching point for writing their own math-related fiction, or just to expose students to a new way of thinking about the math they are learning.  The books make a great classroom read-aloud or can be used as a math center during a unit.
At Anastasis Academy, we made sure to have plenty of these types of math books available to students during silent reading.  They really enjoy reading them with a partner and pointing out the math concepts they recognize along the way.

Tips: Embed the link to Living Math Book List on your class website or blog, this will make it easy for you, and your students, to find math-related books any time.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Living Book List in  your classroom!

What’s the Time Mr. Wolf

Posted by admin | Posted in Language Arts, Math, Primary Elementary, Websites | Posted on 19-05-2010

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What it is: What’s the Time Mr. Wolf is a fun sequencing and time activities for students in kindergarten or first grade.  (I was just looking for one of these for a Treasures unit in first grade, great timing!).  In this game, students are asked to sequence pictures based on the time of day that they happened.  After sorting the photos, students must choose the correct time-of-day description to match the photo.  Finally, students are given analogue clocks with various times on them.  Students have to choose the correct clock to match the narration of the story.  

How to integrate What’s the Time Mr. Wolf into the classroom: What’s the Time Mr. Wolf is a great short activity that helps students practice sequencing, recognizing time-of-day high frequency words, and reading an analogue clock.  The activity is narrated and builds listening and direction-following auditory skills.   What’s the Time Mr. Wolf is a short and sweet activity that students can complete independently.  The game includes progress monitoring and provides students immediate feedback as they interact with it.

Tips: What’s the Time Mr. Wolf is another free game from Sherston.  They also sell this game as part of a complete software package.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using What’s the Time Mr. Wolf in your classroom.

Math Live

Posted by admin | Posted in Interactive Whiteboard, Math, Middle/High School, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, video, Video Tutorials, Websites | Posted on 02-03-2010

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What it is: In honor of World Math Day (which takes place tomorrow 3/3/10) I decided to pass on a fantastic math website that I learned about from The Techie Classroom Blog (one of the amazing blogs taking part in the edublogger alliance).  Math Live has a collection of animated cartoons that teach students math concepts.  3rd through 6th grade students can learn about numbers, patterns and relations, shape and space, and statistics and probability.  These cartoons are extremely high quality and teach key math concepts through story.  Students can watch videos on place value, multiples, factors, primes, proper fractions, equivalent fractions, comparing and ordering fractions, comparing and ordering decimals, addition and subtraction of decimals, multiplication of whole numbers, division of whole numbers, multiplication and division of decimals, patterns, area and perimeter, volume, time, triangles, polygons, sides, tessellations, ordered pairs, displaying data, probability and estimating.  The videos show students real-world applications of math concepts.  The videos are chunked really well and stop periodically so that students can think about and discuss their thoughts on the math concept.  The videos have outstanding visuals that explain the concepts succinctly.  Each video is accompanied by an Activity Sheet (read worksheet), an assessment, and Teacher/Parent Notes.  The Teacher Notes include a great section with “Common mistakes students make” to help teachers avoid common pitfalls when teaching.  They also include great ideas for additional practice of the concepts.  Math Live gives students an excellent animated, interactive math glossary.  As students are viewing a video lesson, they can access either the master glossary (with all of the sites vocabulary) or visit the lesson glossary (with only the vocabulary from the lesson).  I am really impressed with the glossary.

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How to integrate Math Live into the classroom: Math is a hard subject for many students.  It can be difficult for students to understand how math relates to real life.  Math Live videos are a great way to help students break down math into manageable pieces.  It illustrates each concept very well.  Students who struggle with math are going to LOVE this site.  It allows them to pause, rewind, and revisit concepts as many times as they need to so that they can master a concept.  These videos would be an excellent way to introduce new math concepts to the whole class using a projector or interactive whiteboard.  They can also be used as a math center on classroom computers or individually in the computer lab.  Keep Math Live handy for students struggling with these concepts or to quickly access math vocabulary in the glossary.

The list of concepts covered is limited, as an extension activity, have students create their own math movie using a tool like Xtranormal or Kerpoof Movie.

Tips: Send Math Live home to parents, these videos could be a tremendous help for homework time.  Often parents struggle with explaining math to their children, this could be a big help!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Math Live in your classroom.

Number Nut

Posted by admin | Posted in Interactive Whiteboard, Math, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Websites | Posted on 19-06-2009

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What it is:  Number Nut is a site all about math.  I love their  catch phrase: “enough math can make anyone nutty”.  This site certainly has enough math for that!  Topics on Number Nut include: shapes and colors, numbers and counting, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, order of operations, dates and times, fractions, decimals, percent values, estimation and rounding, ratios, and money math.  There is something for every math class here!  Each topic gives an overview of the math concept (kind of like the break down students would find at the beginning of a new math chapter).  This is followed by two interactives where students can practice their new found knowledge. Number Nut is standard aligned and has a great math glossary.

 

How to integrate Number Nut into the classroom:   Number Nut is truly like an interactive math textbook, there are multiple pages for each concept and each page is followed by two interactive practice areas.  I love this as an alternative to math textbooks because students get immediate feedback as they work.  They know whether they have mastered the concept or need to keep working at it.  With traditional math textbooks, a student doesn’t know if they understand a concept until they turn in their math worksheet and get it back a few days later full of red marks.  Number Nut is good for teaching new math concepts on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector.  Students can read along as you explain and demonstrate new math concepts.  Then, students can practice on their own.  Ideally, Number Nut would be used in a computer lab setting where every student is using a computer.  This would allow students to work at their own pace and on the skills they need the most practice on.  Number Nut could also be used as a math center where students take turns visiting and solving problems.

 

Tips:   I learned about Number Nut from a tweet by @kellyhines she is full of great classroom resources and one of my favorite education follows!  Number Nut does require flash so make sure that you have the appropriate flash plugins before using this site with your class.

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Number Nut in your classroom.

ict Numeracy Games

Posted by admin | Posted in Fun & Games, Interactive Whiteboard, Math, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Websites | Posted on 25-08-2008

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What it is: ict Numeracy Games are created by educator James Barrett.  These flash games are excellent for primary and beginning secondary elementary students to practice math.  You will find game themes for number facts, counting, bridging through ten, time, shape and measures, greater than and less than, multiplication and rounding, money (this is UK money), addition, subtraction, odd and even, place values, doubles, and equivalence.  Each math or numeracy theme has several games to play for practice.  Each is interactive and has instructions for integrating the game into the classroom.  All great ideas!

 

How to integrate ict Numeracy Games into the classroom: The ict Numeracy Games are perfect for use with an interactive whiteboard or projector and whole class instruction.  Several of the games are also great practice for students working on individual computers.  The games are all very engaging.  They teach and provide practice for basic math skills.  This is a great stop when you are looking for an interactive activity to practice a math concept.  The descriptions next to the game are very helpful and you are bound to find new ideas for integrating technology into your classroom.  

 

Tips: There are advertisements on this site but they are unobtrusive, your students probably won’t even notice.  The games are high quality enough that this shouldn’t be a deterrent.  

 

Leave a comment and share how you are using ict Numeracy Games in your classroom.

 

Count Us In

Posted by admin | Posted in Interactive Whiteboard, Math, Primary Elementary, Software, Teacher Resources, Websites | Posted on 14-08-2008

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What it is: Count Us In is a fun basic math skill site with 15 interactive games that teach kids basic math skills. These include counting, patterning, counting, ordinal numbers, representing number with words, addition, subtraction, sorting and grouping, time, numbers, chance, halves, length, and volume. The flash based games can be played online or downloaded to a Mac or PC for offline play.

How to integrate Count Us In into the classroom:
These are great games to teach kids basic math concepts. The site is good for individual use in a computer lab, or center group use in a classroom setting. Students can work at their own level, going onto the next game after they have mastered one. The games can be used to help teach concepts or as review and practice for math skills. The site is best for k-1 students or struggling math students in second grade. The site is also perfect for an interactive whiteboard. Call students up to the board to interact with the games individually or split your class into teams to play the games.

Tips: Visit the “other activities” section of the Count Us In website for some great teacher resources including well thought out activities to use with the games on the website.

Leave a comment and share how you are using Count Us In in your classroom.

Capzles

Posted by admin | Posted in History, Interactive Whiteboard, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Web2.0, Websites | Posted on 22-07-2008

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What it is: Capzles is another interactive timeline maker. I really love all the little extras that Capzles has! With Capzles teachers and students can add photos, videos, audio, and text to their timeline. Themes, colors, backgrounds, and background music can be added to the timeline making it unique and personalized. Capzles also provides options when sharing your Capzle, it can be private with a specific list of who can view the Capzle or made public for the world to see.

How to integrate Capzles into the classroom: Obviously Capzles is a great way for students to create timelines about any subject. The web 2.0 collaborative aspect of Capzles makes it very appealing to students. I think Capzles could also be very valuable in the primary classroom. Students probably won’t be creating their own timelines in Capzles at this age, parent helpers paired with students to create simple timelines would be appropriate. Becasue Capzles has the capability of adding audio, photos, and text, it would be the perfect place to record students reading throughout the year. As you assess student reading through reading records, record the students using a program such as Gabcast, Gcast, Audacity, or Garageband. Take a digital picture of the student reading. Througout the year, you can make a Capzle for each student. This is an excellent motivator for students, especially your struggling readers. Students can see their growth throughout the year in pictures, and hear their reading progress made throughout the year. You can share the Capzle with parents (they will go crazy for this keepsake!) and with the students future teacher. How much would you love getting a timeline of your students from the previous year? You would have a jump start on their struggles and strengths in reading as you quickly flip through their timelines. Cool huh?!

Tips: When assigning students to create a timeline, direct them to concentrate on the “meat” of the timeline first. Then they can go back and design their timeline with themes, colors, and backgrounds. If you don’t specify they will spend all of their time tweaking the look and run out of time to add the content.

Leave a comment and share how you are using Capzles in your classroom.