It's important at the start of the school year to getvoff on the right foot. Behavioral expectations are key. The same applies for using technology in the classroom. This two part lesson I have designed addresses all those expectations. If you are designing a lesson to teach computer usage in the classroom, here's some ideas.
Nothing is more fun that creating an image mashup in class. This skill lets the learner take several unrelated objects and recombine the into something new. This can represent new learnings and understandings. With Google Apps, its very easy to do. More importantly, you can have kids collect real images in class, like pictures of a science lab or cultures project. The video below explains the basics of how to make a mashup in science class. If you're interesting in learning more, click the click the image below to see our classroom product.
I have created amazing lessons for the past 20 years. During that time, we went from an environment with a few computers to a setting where every student has one. Now I am in the process of updating my lessons to have a technology component. Google Apps provides a great platform for this. Create a shared drive, kids can take pictures of their lab work, edit images and make dynamic presentations on their learning. If these ideas interest you, check out my Essential Computer Skills for Science Class bundle below.
If you are looking for ways to incorporate technology into your existing lessons, this bundle is for you. Students will learn the basics of using digital images, manipulating graphics and making connections to create unique products that demonstrate their learning. When students create in this activity, they reach higher levels of learning. I use these lessons at the start of the school year, this allows me to apply these techniques to any activity during the school year. Growing some seeds in class? Create a digital image. Learning photosynthesis? Have students take a picture of the plant, then annotate the image and mash it up to show what they have learned.
Everytime we talk about social media in school, it ends up in a discussion over Facebook and student drama. I've often wondered how we could connect with our students in a positive way to teach them about social media and how to use it appropriately. Many school policies ban certain types of social media contacts with kids (I like my job), so what is our alternative? Edmodo is an educator centered social media website. It's simple to use and your classes can connect with you and their classmates. The best part is the teacher controls who is in the class and can easily monitor everything that is going on. I've even set up Edmodo classes for my after school groups to discuss important topics. If you have never used Edmodo before, check out the video and links below. Best part, its free!
Plickers are an amazing tool for classrooms. They are printable student response cards that can be stapled, glued or taped onto your kids notebooks. The best part, they are free. This gives you a quick and easy way to collect responses from bell ringers, questions or whole class assessments. If you haven't experimented with these yet, check out the video below, I highly recommend Plickers.
Every year I am looking for ways to improve my classroom. This video on active learning really gets me thinking about my students. How will I engage them this year, what will I do to improve my classroom. When I think of improvement, I consider several categories
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Middle School Resources to Engage Kids
Love this one, simple but effective.
What if Jupiter was a star?