Have you ever wanted to create a quick one page website that your students and/or parents could access? Well there's two resources to do just that. The first one is called Smore. On Smore you can create online flyers for anything and everything. I use Smore for my weekly newsletter and then go in a update it each week. Parents and students can view it by simply returning to the same link or I can embed a copy of it on my class webite. Each week when you update online it will automatically update the copy embedded on your website. Students can also create a Smore flyer for any content learning as well. It allows you add different forms of media such as photos and movies. There is also an education version (smore.com/education) that has a free and paid subscription based on your needs. See the video below for more information.
Another great resource for creating one pagers is Tackk. Tackk is very similiar to Smore and allows you to create a one page website as well. It's easy to create and edit these pages. There are different kinds of Tackks that you can create. My favorite is the Classroom Assignment because it allows my students to add content to the Tackk page itself. It would be a great way to do a short or extended research project. You can add all kinds of media to the Tackk page. See the video below for more ways for using Tackk.
This week I have been playing around with a new technology site called ClassFlow. I haven't been this excited about a resource since I discovered Evernote!. In my humble opinion, ClassFlow is a great crossbreed between and interactive lesson resource and a collaborative whiteboard. It's great for teachers K-High School and any subject area. ClassFlow allows teachers to create not only polls an quizzes but student can view a webpage or video and annotate on them directly from an ipad or a computer. It also allows a teacher to connect to their Dropbox, Google Drive, and/or Onedrive accounts to pull in even more resources. Teachers can also use lessons that other teachers have created. This resource is in beta so some features may be available for a while and then disappear only to reappear in a much better format. There is also a ClassFlow Student app for the ipad and a ClassFlow Teacher app for the iphone. I highly recommend that you watch the one hour recorded webinar that goes into much more detail about the uses of ClassFlow. ClassFlow also has several tutorial videos on YouTube that you will want to check out.
I'm sure that many of you have used a "clicker" type app in your classroom to increase student engagment. One of my favorite student reponse apps to use is Socrative. However, I have recently found a new one called Kahoot! Kahoot! is more of a game like interface. It even provides background music while you answer the questions. l also love that it is web based so there is no app to have to download and it works on any device. There are 3 types of questions you can ask your audience-Quiz, Discussion, and Survey. Students don't have to have to login. They simply login in at kahoot.it and type in the game pin number provided by the teachers. Teachers can also create games and share with other teachers. Be sure to watch the short tutorial below. Now, give a hoot for Kahoot!
I know what some of you are thinking. What in the world is an LMS? An LMS is a Learning Management System. Many of you may have used Blackboard or Moodle. These are examples of an LMS. However, some LMS systems can be complicated to use and may even cost ridiculous amonts of money. I want to share information about a new LMS that I have recently run across called Schoology. If you are familiar with Edmodo, then Schoolgy is very similar. It has a Facebook like interace and the beauty of both Schoology and Edmodo is that they are both FREE!!! That's a wonderful word to hear in times of major budget cuts. While I found many of the features of Schoology very similar to Edmodo, I found some things that I really liked about Schoology. One thing that I really like is that it is easy to integrate a lot of apps and sites that I use on a daily basis such as Google Drive, Evernote, Dropbox, and Remind 101. There is also a really good ipad app for Schoology that is easy to use and is a little more user friendly than the Edmodo app. I also love that I can join different professional groups so that I can connect and learn from other educators around the world. The last that I really love about Schoology is the capability of having discussions separately from posts about assignments. This is something that is not possible in Edmodo. It also has the capability of creating tests and quizzes to an entire class or indivdually to students. It also allows assignments to be graded with a rubric. It's definitely worth checking out!
Want a great way to create or have students create educational videos? Well you might want to give PowToon a try. PowToon is one of those great apps that can be added to your Google Chrome browser or you can go to their website and sign up for a free account. I love the animations and it makes creating an engaging video so easy for you and for students! If you already have a Google account, you can use that as your log in. See the video below for an example of a PowToon video.
Most of us might not be aware that the Google Chrome web browser is more than just a way to surf the internet. Chrome has several apps that can be added that can increase productivity and can be used by students. It's very simple to add them to your Chrome browser. Follow these steps to really unlock everything Chrome has to offer:
1. The first step is to sign into the Chrome browser. Watch the video below to see how to do that.
2. Once you are signed in, type in chrome.google.com/webstore. This will open the app store and you can search for a variety of apps. I have a screen shot below of my chrome start page.
3. Most of the apps are free but there are a few paid apps as well.
The beautiful thing about using Chrome with apps is that you can sign into any computer anywhere and have all your apps ready to go. Just remember that you will need to sign out before you leave that computer.
Here is a list of just a few apps that I especially like: Evernote, PowtoonEDU, Google Drive, Edmodo, Dropbox, Livebinders, Padlet, EdPuzzle
Photo Credit: https://www. facebook.com/edmodo
I spent most of the day today attending the EdmodoCon online conference from the comfort of my home. There were sessions on implementing Common Core standards, Project Based Learning, Flipped Classrooms, Global Read Alouds, etc. Whew! It was a good day and was simply the best professional development that I have attended all summer long! There will be an archive of those sessions that you can view at any time on the EdmodoCon w If you don't know what Edmodo is it's a social networking platform very similiar to Facebook but is strictly geared towards education. It allows teachers to create closed groups that have a special code or URL to join them. No one can view anything without being a member. That's just the very tip of the iceberg of what all a teacher can use Edmodo for. Parents can also join with a special parent code that allows them to view anything their child can view. Edmodo is available via the web on a computer but there is also an app for Ipads and Android devices. Teachers can also create polls and quizzes. My favorite feature that I've just begun to learn about is their embedded Apps. I highly suggest that you visit the Edmodo site and sign up for a teacher account TODAY!! Here are just a few ways to use Edmodo in the classroom:
1. Use it to post daily assignments. I do this every day at the end of school. This makes it very easy to update an absent student. I can also include any links, videos, handouts, etc. that they would need to. I use this format: Today in class we: Tonight's Homework: Special Reminders:
2. Create Book Clubs/Lit Circles: Use Edmodo as a place for members of Lit Circles to discuss their book ahead of the classroom discussions. I use Edmodo as part of my Summer Reading so that I can begin connecting to my new students over the summer and getting them familiar with the Edmodo format.
3. Create a Parent Group: Use Edmodo to share valuable information with parents on school functions and helpful information on how to help their child at home.
4. Daily Bellringer: Use Edmodo to post your daily bellringer activity.
Another great feature of Edmodo for teachers is that there are lots of groups for your own professional growth from Digital Citizenship to the Basal Alignment Project. They also have a wonderful support department and help files for those times when you don't know how to do something. DO NOT hesitate! Sign up for an Edmodo account today.
AudioBoo is a really great app! You may be wondering, "What can I do with Audioboo?". Well think of turning your device into a digital recorder and that's just the beginning of what this app is capable of. My favorite way to use AudioBoo is to create digital book reviews. The cool thing about AudioBoo is that I can attach a picture along with the digital file to make it even more appealing. Your recordings or "boos" also have their own web URL address so you can create a QR code that will send kids and parents straight to that particular recording. If that's not enough, you can also embed your boos on your website. Audioboo is available on the web (audioboo.com) and also as Apple and Android apps. So what are you waiting for?!?! Go create yourself an account and get busy creating some wonderful Boos!
Screenshot of what Audiobook looks like embedded on a website.
Click Here for even more ways to use Audioboo!
Ok so I was reading through some posts on a group that I'm a member of on Edmodo. Yes, Edmodo has groups for teachers too, but that's another post for another day! One teacher shared a website called GradeCam. So I decided to check it out and I'm really glad I did!
This website turns any document camera (Your Elmo) or webcam into a answer sheet scanner. The free version only allows the answer sheet to have up to 10 questions but it scans and grades them instantly! My first thought was super fast formative assessments and a great way to practice bubbling questions for those state tests!
Pros: Creating an account and setting up classes is super easy! Student accounts can quickly be created by using Excel and creating a CSV file. Then import the file into GradeCam.
Cons: It's only free for a trial period and then it's $10 a month. However, if you get others to sign up then you get 3 months free. Schools can also request a 3 month pilot
Student Response Systems or "clickers" have become a great addition to any classroom. They are a great way to keep students actively engaged in the lesson. However, they are expensive and usually require a particular kind of software to make them work. Now there are two really great web based versions of a "clicker" system for teachers and students. The wonderful thing about them is that they both work across all the various formats-computer, Apple, and Android.
1. Socrative-The Socrative system is web based but there are also apps that students and teachers can download to their tablet devices. To start using Socrative, first go to the Socrative website. Create an account and setup your classes. Then download the Teacher app to your tablet devices or run the lesson from a desktop/laptop computer. Student will also need to login to the Socrative website or download the app from their devices as well.
2. InfuseLearning-This is also a web based clicker type system that can be accessed across many devices. It's similar to Socrative in that you need to create an account and then set up your classes. It also has the feature of a shared whiteboard and to quickly share a link with students.
Both sites are very easy setup for a classroom and will keep your students engaged.
I'm a 7th grade Reading teacher and a technology lover. During the 2011-2012 school year we implemented a BYOD initiative. I hope that you will find some helpful information here.