Friday, March 22, 2013

Kids should control technology...



Kids should be the ones thinking, creating, and designing.  Good thing to keep in mind when choosing apps and using them with students.  

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Designing Quote Masterpieces with ReciteThis.com

A fun website I came across from one of my colleagues on Pinterest, @happycampergirl.  I've had plenty of fun designing my own quote masterpieces and now I'm brainstorming ways teachers might use it in their classrooms.  What ideas can you add?



Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Today's Meet for Virtual Book Clubs


As teachers we are always looking for ways to engage, personalize and maximize learning for our students.  In reading, teachers often lead guided reading groups or reading conferences to give individualized instruction while the rest of the class reads independently.  One of the ways I maximize my time during our reader's workshop is by using my class IPads and Todaysmeet.com.  

Today's Meet is a web-based backchanneling tool.  Backchanneling is the "practice of using networked computers to maintain a real-time online conversation alongside the primary group activity or live spoken remarks" (Victor Yngve 1970).

Today's Meet is a website that allows you to create a backchannel room for 2 hours, 8 hours, 12 hours, 1 day, 1 week or 1 month depending on your needs.  After that, the room disappears.  You name the room, so it is easy to tailor it to your presentation with other educators or an activity with students.  The link ends up being todaysmeet.com/name_of_room.  Ex. Todaysmeet.com/teacheripadtricks

Today's Meet is web-based and not an app, but it is easy to add a button to IPad home screens.  For directions, see here.  

As I begin a guided reading group, I start a room titled after the book we are reading.  Many of these books are longer and after reading the first chapter or chapters together, I send them off to read on their own and continue the conversation through today's meet.  I can pose questions, students can ask questions and discuss the text in a virtual book club.  The students are actively engaged, while I am opened up to work with another reading group or provide extra support for my struggling readers.  

See some examples from 1st grade readers below.







Practicing phonics skills



How have you been able to maximize your time during reading?  Have you used todaysmeet or other backchannels in your classroom for other purposes? 


  

Adding a Button to your IPad Home Screen