Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Osmo Teacher Training - a great resource to integrate Osmo in your classroom

Osmo is an educational gaming system for the iPad. Osmo combines physical play with digital apps using reflective artificial intelligence, Osmo's advanced technology bridges the real and digital realms.

An amazing resource that was launched in the Summer of 2018 is Osmo Teacher Training. In this site, you will find a
  •  resource library to help you integrate Osmo in the classroom (with welcome video)
  • videos on how to set up Osmo
  • videos on how to set up the game Words 
  • getting starting guides
  • community videos and support
Embedded below is a GIF followed by a 1minute and 22 second YouTube video.

Take care,

Monday, August 20, 2018

Updated Exit Poll in Classroomscreen.com

Classroomscreen has an updated exit poll that allows you to quickly create an exit poll with a filler title of "What did you think of today's lesson?" that can easily be edited to fit your lesson's need.

  • What is nice is that students can vote easily on a SmartBoard / other interactive board. 
  • Results are hidden until you select to show results 
  • There are 4 options (range from smiley to frown) 5,4, 3,  and 2 with one additional of an x and a check
  • You can also reset results
Embedded below is a 1-minute tutorial.

Take care,

Sunday, August 19, 2018

How to get more out of Twitter - create lists to organize interests

The main complaint I hear from people about Twitter is that they don't get it. When I dig a little deeper their main reason is they feel as though if they don't see someone's tweet right away they miss it. This is where Twitter lists can help really come in handy. When you create a  list you group those users into a single list. This really helps to focus in on a certain topic, for example, you may want to follow all the teachers in your district to see what amazing things they are doing!

To create a List:
  • Visit your Lists page via the gear icon drop-down menu or by clicking Lists on your profile page
  • Click Create List
  • Name the List and provide a description
  • Designate the List as Public or Private 
    • if you designate a list as Public the users you add will be notified they are in the list you created and other users can subscribe to the list
    • if you designate a list as Private only you have access to the list and know of its existence 
  • Save the List
Embedded below is a YouTube tutorial showing you how to create a list.

Take care and enjoy making those lists!


Saturday, August 18, 2018

How to make sure your Google files (Docs, Sheets, and Slides) are available for offline use

On a recent trip to Vermont, I wanted to be sure I had access to my Google Drive files  (in case the Hotspot on my phone was not properly working**).  In order to set up offline access you will need to:

  • Go to docs.google.com (or slides.google.com or sheets.google.com)
  • Select the menu icon (three lines) upper-left
  • Select the settings gear icon
  • Toggle the option for "Offline Sync" to on
All changes will sync to the cloud when there is an internet connection.

Embedded below is a 1 minute and 28 second YouTube tutorial. 

Take care,

** The Hotspot would not work unless I used my charger to plug directly into my computer.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Have a favorite musician or band and want to find artists/bands that are similar? Try music-map.com

Many times we music we or students really like and want to find music that is similar. Well, with music-map.com you can!

Simply log on and type in the artist - it will create a cloud type look, with the artist you chose in the middle and the most similar in nature to your artist will be the closest.

Embedded below is a 42 second YouTube tutorial I created.

Take care,

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Have a favorite movie and want to find a movie that is similar? Try movie-map.com

Many times we find a movie we or students really like and want to find a movie that is similar. Well, with movie-map.com you can!

Simply log on and type in the movie - it will create a cloud type look, with the movie you chose in the middle and the most similar in nature to your movie will be the closest.

Embedded below is a GIF followed by a 46 second YouTube tutorial I created.

Take care,

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Khan Academy Kids - amazing free educational app for ages 2-5

Khan Academy for Kids is a free app designed for children ages 2-5. Khan Academy Kids is very user-friendly, colorful, appealing to the eyes, as well as thorough and meaningful.

Your child will be guided through the original activities by 5 friendly characters. The content "library" includes interactive videos, books, and activities (both for math and reading). There are assessed activities as well as open-ended tasks. There are also able to collect accessories like bugs, hats, and toys for their favorite characters.

As a dad of two (Sydney 9 and Jack 6) I know there are numerous apps and websites geared to engage and help with learning. I feel like I have seen (and tried) them all. I have to say, Khan Academy Kids is the best and easiest to navigate. Plus, it is free. Can't beat that!

Embedded below is a  1 minute and 44 second YouTube video from Sal Khan himself as well as a 2 minute and 23 second YouTube video I created showing you some of the ins and outs of the app.

Take care,

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Website that lists Kids' Book Series by Lexile Measure, age, AR level, Grade Level, etc.

Kids Book Series lists kids' book series in a very user-friendly manner. You can search in the following ways:

  • ABC
  • Age Group
  • Genre
  • Accelerated Reader Level
  • Grade Level Equivalent
  • Lexile Measure
  • F&P/ Guided Reading Level
  • DRA Level
  • List of Series
  • List of Authors
Embedded below is a GIF followed by a 1 minute and 17 second YouTube tutorial.

Take care,

Monday, August 13, 2018

Guest Post: W is for Website Make a useful and professional looking teacher website

Today's post was written by Alison Navarette a second-grade teacher in the suburbs of Philadelphia (Methacton School District). You can follow Alison on Twitterfollow her blog, as well as see her classroom Google Sites website by clicking on the links.

W is for Website
Make a useful and professional looking
teacher website

This summer, I finally created a Google Site for myself and I could not be happier with the results. If your teacher site could use a fresh look, Google Sites is what you need. Google Sites is user-friendly with an end result that is customized to your needs and looks very professional.

Check out my friend Brad’s blog post with lots of tips for setting up a new Google Site:

Keep it simple
Know your audience and know what they are looking for on your site. For K-2 teacher sites, your audience is most likely parents. For me, my website gets the most visits in August/September--- the back-to-school stalkers. Parents that I polled want to see Supply Lists and ME via a quick bio and picture. I added a blurb about myself and a picture of me with my family...nothing fancy...helps parents/students to recognize me. During the school year, my 2nd-grade parents want to easily find Homework, Upcoming Events, and Contact Info (my email address mostly). Some parents that I talked to also requested Spelling Lists and Resources for working with students at home. Upper elementary, middle, and high school teacher sites will obviously require different information as well as have a different audience- their students.

Keep it current
It is frustrating for parents to visit a teacher’s website only to find out-of-date information. If your website is the first impression a parent gets, this is unprofessional and makes you look lazy. To easily avoid this, do not include dates or years on your website unless you plan to continually change them. Instead of labeling a page “2012 Math Curriculum” just call it “Math Curriculum” and it does not need updating every year until the actual content changes. I have very few things on my website that will need to be changed frequently as I do not want to add website updating to my to-do list, especially once the school year begins. However, Google Sites makes it quick and easy to update my site when necessary.

Keep it simple. Keep it current.

If you’d like to see what I’ve created….

Thanks for reading and please share your Google site with me.


Sunday, August 12, 2018

Use a Google Form πŸ“to gather information from families early in the school year 🏫.

A Google Form is a simple and clean way to gather necessary information. In the Google Form, I created below you will notice that it is not a long form, includes basic information as well as a place for families to have the opportunity to let you know any information they would like to share with you. 

Take care,