Edutech for Teachers

Cool Tools for the 21st Century Classroom

Diigo Weekly Bookmarks

May19

diigo iconWhat’s new this week in my Diigo bookmarks? Check out the links shown below to access two super cool and very useful tools can be utilized to engage students in the classroom!

» AutoDraw

Simply begin drawing your best version of a pizza, house or birthday cake on the canvas and the machine learning algorithms match your doodles with professional drawings to make you look like a pro! Google’s latest experiment is compatible with all mobile and desktop devices.

Check out the Google goodness for yourself by viewing the following video…

» GooseChase

An iOS and Android app that can be used to create a variety of digital scavenger hunts. A powerful, fun and collaborative way to incorporate gamification into your classroom!

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links can be found here.

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Tag It with Social Media Magnetic Poetry

May18

Summer vacation is just a few weeks away in many schools… That’s the good news! But that means it’s also that time of the year when teachers are searching for activities to motivate students to the finish line.

Well, we all know how much they love, love social media so why not tap into this interest by combining an old school favorite with some modern-day tech terms. If that sounds like a winner, then all you need to do is snag a copy of my Social Media Magnetic Poetry template!

This brand-new Google Slides resource contains 110+ social media themed words and phrases that can be manipulated into a fun-filled poem, story, etc.

As with my other creations, the word boxes are actually images and cannot be edited; however, they can be deleted. Plus, additional words can be generated by creating a new text box and filling it with a white background.

Before your students begin to like it, tweet it and tag it, here are a few additional items worth mentioning:

» The background on the Google Slide is locked so students can avoid accidentally moving it. However, it can still be changed if you wish to allow them to do so. Just right-click on the slide and select the “Change background…” option.

» Some teachers have requested that I provide a word list for each activity so I have created additional slides that includes this info.

Check out a sneak preview below!

Click here to access the template. You will be prompted to download your very own copy of the original to save to your Google Drive. It can then be shared with your students in a variety of ways—with Google Classroom being the easiest and slickest.

Classroom Connection:

The Social Media Magnetic Poetry template can be utilized as an independent or collaborative writing activity. Utilize the “magnets” included and/or add your own text boxes to extend the activity—although I think part of the fun/challenge is to just use the words provided.

Have fun… And as always, be sure to share your own classroom creations with us.

A shout out to Alex and Blake for assisting me with the creation of this activity! ♥

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The Weekly Edtech Smackdown: Vol. VIII

May14

Welcome to the weekly edition of The Edtech Smackdown—a collection of digital resources containing a few of my most favorite activities, tools and articles curated from various social media spaces throughout the past week.

Check out some super cool edtech gems right here, right now and get ready to use these ideas to support learning and to engage students in your classroom!

This week kicks off with more Google goodness you won’t want to miss…

» Creating Lit Trips and Tours for Google Earth—By Eric Curts, Control Alt Achieve

» The Google Drawings Manifesto for Teachers—By Matt Miller, Ditch That Texbook

» Google Slides: Make a Draggable Stack—By Alice Keeler, Teacher Tech

» Bring In a Google Doc into a Spreadsheet—By Alice Keeler, Teacher Tech

» 7 Hidden Tips for Google Sites—By Alice Keeler, Teacher Tech

» How to Easily Assess Student Writing in Google Docs—By Kasey Bell, Shake Up Learning

For the Apple Gurus…

» Running an iPad App Draft in the Classroom—By Erin Flanagan,

Other #EdTech faves…

» And Here is Your 5000th Poster Assignment—Love, love this crowd-sourced doc containing alternatives to the typical poster project! From Alice Keeler, Teacher Tech

» 6 3D Printing Lesson Plans from MakerBot’s Thingiverse—By Monica Burns, Class Tech Tips

» 8 Examples of Transforming Lessons Through the SAMR Cycle—Kelly Walsh, EmergingEdTech

Good reads…

» The Maker Mindset & Invention Literacy—By Colleen Graves, Maker Ed Author

» Makerspaces Around the World—By Laura Fleming, Worlds of Learning

» Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom—A book written by by Sylvia Libow Martinez & Gary Stager

» 8 Ideas to Make the End of the Year Race Better—By Pernille Ripp

» Teach Kids to Code and Secure Their Future—By Matthew Lynch, The Tech Edvocate

» Making Science: Reimagining STEM Education in Middle School and Beyond—A book written by Christa Flores

Other super cool stuff…

» The Educational Hashtag and Twitter Chat Database—Compiled by Kasey Bell, Shake Up Learning

» School STEM Program Website—Deerfield Academy (Deerfield, MA)

» Websites & Blogs to Follow—Compiled by Bret Gosselin, The One Room Globetrotter

» Another excellent sketchnote by Sylvia Duckworth…

And there you have it—this week’s smackdown! Stay tuned for additional resources coming your way in the next round…

In the meantime—if you’ve missed any of my previous edtech collections, check ’em out within the interactive image embedded below… Be sure to hover over the image to reveal the hotspots!

Click here to view a full screen version of this image.

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Diigo Weekly Bookmarks

May11

diigo iconWhat’s new this week in my Diigo bookmarks? Check out the links shown below to access two super cool and very useful tools can be utilized to engage students in the classroom!

» Clips

A video editor app for iOS devices that contains filters, graphics, emojis, music and more! Use it to create multimedia projects, video feedback, short instructions for flipped learning and whatever else your imagination can create!

» ClassroomScreen

Project this online tool in your classroom and quickly access a variety of teaching resources including a timer, text area, drawing tool, name picker, work symbols, calculator, QR codes and more—all for free! Check out a demo shown below…

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links can be found here.

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Tech It Up Tuesday: Jazz Up Images with PhotoFunia

May9

Welcome to the latest edition of “Tech It Up Tuesday”, a weekly series in which I share an edtech tool, app, site or other resource that can be utilized in the educational setting.

This week’s #edtech goodness is one for the digital photo gurus—and it goes something like this…

If you’re interested in adding some originality to your pics, then PhotoFunia, a free online photo editing tool, is the ideal resource for you—and your students! Whether you want to see your portrait on the cover of a magazine, the billboards of Times Square or on the walls of the Louve—or maybe you just want to make your own mark in the sand, write graffiti text on a wall or create a customized road sign… Either way, a myriad of effects and filters are waiting for you on this fantastic site!

Aside from hundreds of ways to pimp out your photos, did I mention how simple PhotoFunia is to use? Yep, you don’t even need a bunch of high-tech image editing skills in order to utilize and enjoy this application. Oh, and guess what? There is no registration or software download necessary to get started. Just select the desired template, upload your photo(s), and after a few clicks, your very own work of art is ready in an instant. Depending on the filter chosen, users have several download options in order to save images for future use.

But wait! There’s more…

You can get your creative on anytime, anywhere by utilizing one of the PhotoFunia mobile apps that are available for any mobile device.

Sound too good to be true? You might think so, but not so much. As the name implies, this tech tool makes tweaking photos a lot of fun. And it’s pretty impressive as well, especially for a freebie!

Check out a few of my favorite effects shown below…

Ever wondered what’s it like to be a rock star? Project a picture of you and your students on a huge screen in front of your loyal fans by taking center stage with this fun concert effect.

PhotoFunia-56b96ce

So, you wake up in the morning and a newspaper is waiting for you. Look! One of your students made the headlines!

PhotoFunia-56bb3ca

Create your own vintage stamp effect by uploading a few of your favorite student photos.

PhotoFunia-56befa3

I’m sure your students have dreamed of starring in a hit TV show? Find out what they would look like with this nifty retro TV Prisoner effect.

PhotoFunia-56c7698

Leave a personalized message on a foggy window.

PhotoFunia-56c160f

 Classroom Connection:

Give students the opportunity to use the PhotoFunia effects to design captivating supplementary materials that add a creative edge to any project or presentation that requires the use of an image to convey an idea or concept: Digital stories, reports, posters, advertisements, comic strips, blogs, wikis and much more!

Additional ways teachers PhotoFunia can be incorporated into classroom activities include using the tool to generate visual writing prompts, displaying student artwork, publicizing student achievements and announcing school events on social media.

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The Weekly Edtech Smackdown: Vol. VII

May7

Welcome to the weekly edition of The Edtech Smackdown—a collection of digital resources containing a few of my most favorite activities, tools and articles curated from various social media spaces throughout the past week.

Check out some super cool edtech gems right here, right now and get ready to use these ideas to support learning and to engage students in your classroom!

This week kicks off with more Google goodness you won’t want to miss…

» Using Google AutoDraw for Sketchnotes, Infographics, Drawings, and More—By Eric Curts, Control Alt Achieve

» Create a Mother’s Day Movie with Google Photos—Google Blog via Eric Curts, Control Alt Achieve

» Code a List of Your Calendar Events with Google Calendar—By Alice Keeler, Teacher Tech

» Favorite Google Tools and How to Use Hyperdocs in the Classroom—The Google Teacher Tribe Podcast featuring Karly Moura

» Browser Tech Tip: Ctrl-F to Find Words Anywhere in a Browser Window—Kelly Walsh, EmergingEdTech

» 6 Ways to Use Adobe Spark with Google Classroom—By Monica Burns, Class Tech Tips

For the Apple Gurus…

» codeSpark Academy with The Foos—Develop problem-solving skills, encourage persistence and promote creativity with the #1 learn to code app for kids ages4-9! #EveryoneCanCode

» Clips Video App Update: Live title editing and other improvements—Info by AppleInsider

Other #EdTech faves…

» Create a Read Aloud Backchannel in Your Classroom—By Monica Burns, Class Tech Tips

» AR/VR in EDU—Tons of augmented and virtual reality resources—Compiled by Jaime Donally

» Augmented Art Show….via Quiver—By Katie Ann Wilson, Diary of a Techie Chick

Good reads…

» Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom—A book about the maker movement written by Gary Stager

» 12 structures to keep kids focused when using the internet in class—Written by Angela Watson

» Teaching Kids about Standing up for the Underdog—Written by Annie Fox via Matthew Lynch, The Tech Edvocate

Other super cool stuff…

» Science & STEM EdTech Links of the Month—Compiled by Eric Curts, Control Alt Achieve

» The Edvocate’s List of 20 Must-Follow K-12 Education Twitter Feeds—Matthew Lynch, The Tech Edvocate

» How to Recover Lost Files from a USB Flash Drive—By Jessica Carrell via Nick LaFave, EdTechPics.org

» How to Make a Lightboard for Less Than $100 (Step-by-Step, With Illustrations)—Kelly Walsh, EmergingEdTech

And there you have it—this week’s smackdown! Stay tuned for additional resources coming your way in the next round…

In the meantime—if you’ve missed any of my previous edtech collections, check ’em out within the interactive image embedded below… Be sure to hover over the image to reveal the hotspots!

Click here to view a full screen version of this image.

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Newspaper Fun with the Fodey Web Tool

May3

Simple… Free… Effective… Three reasons why we’re bringing back a web tool from the edtech archives. And it goes something like this…

Fodey is a neat Web 2.0 tool that allows users to generate their own authentic newspaper clipping (that can double as a primary source document). Simply enter the name of a fictitious newspaper, date, headline and story… Fodey does the rest!

Besides being super easy to use, Fodey requires no log-in or registration.

Check out the sample shown below—one from a middle school Language Arts class. After reading Chapter 6 from the Hatchet novel, students used the newspaper clipping template to share their chapter summaries with classmates.

Tech Tip:

Fodey does not have a text editor or a saving function; therefore, it is best to have students compose their stories in a word processing program/app first. Once a final draft is complete, they can copy and paste the info into the web tool. When the user is ready to produce the clipping, they click on the “Generate” button followed by the “Download your Image” link to save the file.  Finished products can be printed and/or used in conjunction with other Web 2.0 tools or projects.

In addition to the newspaper article generator, Fodey also provides other fun templates students can use to present information for a specific audience. A few of these include talking tomatoes, wizard animated text and a movie clapper board (see example below).

Classroom Connection:

Fodey is a low-tech interactive resource that can be integrated into any classroom. From historical events to memes to accounts of a class celebration or field trip, this tool is a simple yet effective solution for engaging students in writing activities across the curriculum. The Fodey templates could also be used as an alternate way of providing students with directions for an assignment or project. Finished products create some pretty swanky bulletin board swag too!

Bottom Line: 

Fodey is an excellent communication tool that will interject some fun into classroom activities.

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Diigo Weekly Bookmarks

May1

diigo iconWhat’s new this week in my Diigo bookmarks? Check out the links shown below to access two super cool and very useful tools can be utilized to engage students in the classroom!

» Zero Noise Classroom

A free Chrome extension that displays noise level and a stopwatch. An excellent tool for cooperative learning activities as well as a way to leverage gamification techniques.

» Kupiter

If you enjoyed playing Asteroids as a kid, then you’ll love this online assessment tool in which students answer questions by playing the old school game. Teachers can add questions by entering text, uploading via a spreadsheet or importing from Quizlet. An engaging game-based way to study anytime, anywhere!

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links can be found here.

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The Weekly Edtech Smackdown: Vol. VI

April30

Welcome to the weekly edition of The Edtech Smackdown—a collection of digital resources containing a few of my most favorite activities curated from various social media spaces throughout the past week.

Check out some super cool edtech gems right here, right now and get ready to use these ideas to support learning and to engage students in your classroom!

This week kicks off with more Google goodness you won’t want to miss…

» The Teacher’s Guide to Google Classroom eBook (including a free bonus: Student Quick Guide)—By Kasey Bell, Shake Up Learning

» Play Connect 4 Asynchronously with Google Drawings—By Alice Keeler, Teacher Tech

» Creative Google Slides Uses for Students—By Eric Curts, Control Alt Achieve

» 8 Awesome Reasons to Go Incognito in Google Chrome—By Kasey Bell, Shake Up Learning

Another geeky gadget worth checking out…

» The first-ever mini robotic printer—By ZUtA Labs 

Good reads…

» Can schools punish students for off-campus, online speech?—Written by Matthew Lynch, The Tech Edvocate

» Why don’t kids speak up about bullying?—A guest post by Jennifer Fraser; Featured on The Tech Edvocate

Other cool stuff…

» 50 Fabulous EdTech Blogs to Follow—Compiled by Eric Curts, Control Alt Achieve

» PicCollage & PicKids… What’s the Difference?—By Ann Kozma, Tech.Travel.Teach

» A super cool quote graphic shared by Erin Flanagan, erintegration.com

And there you have it—this week’s smackdown! Stay tuned for additional resources coming your way in the next round…

In the meantime—if you’ve missed any of my previous edtech collections, check ’em out here:

» Volume I

» Volume II

» Volume III

» Volume IV

» Volume V

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Diigo Weekly Bookmarks

April24

diigo iconWhat’s new this week in my Diigo bookmarks? Check out the links shown below to access two super cool and very useful tools can be utilized to engage students in the classroom!

» Illuminations

A platform in which teachers can locate hundreds of lesson plans, activities and strategies for improving their teaching practices in math. Educators can select grade specific games and content, ensuring that students are on par with standards set by The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). Activities align with Common Core State Standards as well.

» Vsauce

A YouTube channel featuring videos relating to various scientific, mathematical and philosophical topics as well as gaming, technology, culture, and other topics of general interest. Great for class use or for some inspiration!
Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links can be found here.

 

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Looking for some technology integration ideas to enhance your classroom lessons? Then be sure to check out my "Tech Tips" for the latest and greatest Web 2.0 tools, applications and web sites that can be incorporated into activities and/or projects. Although some posts may not be applicable to your content area or grade level, be sure to check back often as I will be varying ideas in order to provide resources across the K-12 curriculum.

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