1. View and compare historical news coverage in the Google News Archive . Google has compiled archives of newspapers as far back as the 1700s. Users can browse newspapers by name or search the archives by keyword. Instead of seeing how textbooks and websites summarize history, students can see how it was treated in the media first-hand.
Students can grab screenshots of historical newspapers for their projects, summarize them or link to them to compare/contrast or add additional details to what they’ve found in other sources.
2. Add images ethically and responsibly with Google Images. Not all Google Images searches are equal. A standard image search returns mostly copyright-protected images. However, by selecting Google Images from a Creative Commons search, users can find images tagged with Creative Commons licenses that grant usage rights to anyone (as long as they follow the license’s instructions).
3. Create flow charts and informational graphics in Google Drawings. Drawings is one of my favorite tools! Gail got hooked on drawings first-I was not impressed by it. After playing with drawings in the past year, as I said, it is one of my favorite tools. They can create new images and graphics from scratch. This helps students organize and present ideas and information more clearly and attractively.
Students can add text, images, lines and shapes to a Google Drawing to create a thinking map or informational graphic to illustrate new ideas.
4. Great Exit Ticket Ideas!!!
5. Friday at the Movies-Something to make you smile on this dreary Friday.
9-26 Today is the official love note day! TRULY! Did you know that the oldest surviving love letter in the English language was dated for this day in 1477? The note was written by Margery Brews to her fiance John Pasto. Why not send an ecard to someone you love, just because. My favorite ecard services are Blue Mountain and 123 Greetings. Today is also Shamu the Whale Day. Maybe you can send Shamu a love note! I wish I could swim. I would really love to swim with Shamu!
9-27 Google's Official Birthday! Well, not actually. Google celebrated September 7 (the day when the company was incorporated) as its birthday till 2005. In 2005 Google changed the date to September 27 to make it coincide with the announcement of the record number of pages that the search engine was indexing. I really don't care what day we celebrate. I all for eating cake any day of the week and if there is one digital service worth celebrating, it Google!!
9-28 National Good Neighbor Day! This day was created to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of a good neighbor. It is a blessing to have a good neighbor but it is even a greater thing to BE a good neighbor.
9-29 World Heart Day is today! World Heart Day on 29 September is the World Heart Federation's biggest platform for raising awareness about cardiovascular disease (CVD).
9-30 Today is Ask a Stupid Question Day. This was a new one on me. You know, everyone always says there is no such thing as a dumb question but I totally disagree! So the first dumb question would be why are we celebrating dumb questions?
No one seems to really know the actual date of this day, although most folks believe it is the last school day of September. I guess by then teachers have heard (and reheard) every dumb question in the book. Instead of letting it bother you, it seems appropriate to try and celebrate it.
1. Create a custom priority inbox in your Gmail. Would you like to set up your gmail so that more important messages come to one place and other messages are stored in a different place? Priority Inbox attempts to automatically identify your important incoming messages and separates them out from everything else. By default, Priority Inbox splits your inbox into sections. Check it out below and then if you want to set up a priority inbox here is the link to give you more information on how to do it. https://support.google.com/mail/answer/186531
2. Gail Moore and I are Google Certified Teachers. That means we have worked through a Google directed process and taken a test to prove to Google that we know our stuff. That's great, you say? You think the certification process is only for those who are paid to work with technology? NOPE! Any teacher can earn their certification from Google. In fact, there is a middle school teacher, Teresa Howell who has not only earned her teacher certification but is working on her trainer certification. It would be amazing if there were many of us who are Google certified teachers or trainers. Please let me know if you are interested in this process! For more information, check this out! https://edutrainingcenter.withgoogle.com/
3. A comment that I frequently hear goes something like this, "I would love to do these things, but not all of my students have computers to use." Fortunately, there are some great review games that can be played in classrooms that only have a handful of web-enabled devices.
4. Here is a quote I stumbled over this week from an educator I follow on Twitter, William Chamberlain. Something that sounds so simple but really is worth rethinking through.
No matter how great an idea or project is, it won't fit the needs of all your students.
5. Friday at the Movies: I love the book series called Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton, a photojournalist. Check out his series of books if you haven't already. He also wrote a book called Little Humans. Here is a video he did based on that book.
9-19 Ahoy, Mates! It is International Talk Like a Pirate Day! This is is a holiday created in 1995 by John Baur (Ol' Chumbucket) and Mark Summers (Cap'n Slappy), of Albany, Oregon., who proclaimed September 19 each year as the day when everyone in the world should talk like a pirate. According to Summers, the day is the only known holiday to come into being as a result of a sports injury. During a racquetball game between Summers and Baur, one of them reacted to the pain with an outburst of "Aaarrr!", and the idea was born. That game took place on June 6, 1995, but out of respect for the observance of the Normandy landings, they chose Summers' ex-wife's birthday, as it would be easy for him to remember. You can get ideas for celebrations here: http://talklikeapirate.com/wordpress/
9-20 Being prepared to deal with an emergency is important for anyone and this is what Get Ready Day is all about. It is staged each year as a way of encouraging individuals, families, and communities to consider what is required in the event of natural disasters, pandemic illnesses, infectious diseases, and other crisis events. The day was first established in the mid 2000’s by the Public Health Association and the Get Ready website has a wealth of information to help those that are interested.
9-21 The United Nations' (UN) International Day of Peace is celebrated on September 21 each year to recognize the efforts of those who have worked hard to end conflict and promote peace. The International Day of Peace is also a day of ceasefire – personal or political. You can get resources to help your celebration here: http://www.un.org/en/events/peaceday/
9-22 will be my favorite day this week.. It is the first official day of AUTUMN!!! Perhaps it will bring on some cooler weather. Check out the almanac online!
9-23 Innergize Day is observed annually on the day after the Autumnal Equinox. This is a day for me! Innergize Day was created by Michelle Porchia of Inner Dimensions who says, "Take this day to relax and rejuvenate yourself. Focus on your personal well-being. Do things you enjoy that make you feel good about yourself. Let stress and worry fade away for the day."
1. I love this chrome extension shared by Gail. It is called Save to Google. It is merely a different way to store your bookmarks. Typically when you bookmark a site you get a list of bookmark names located under "Other Bookmarks" or displayed across the top of your menu bar. This is nice if you remember what all those names are when you go back to locate a certain site. I can't remember diddly! This extension turns those bookmark names into thumbnail tiles so you can easily locate the site you saved. Below is a sample from my saves.
2. Another extension that was shared this week by Mike is The Great Suspender. Every time you open a new tab and load a website you draw from the available bandwidth while the tab is loaded, even if this tab is in the background of your browser. Install this extension and go into the settings to choose a length of time and after that time any tab you have not use will be "turned off" as far as using bandwidth. It will be as if you never loaded the tab. The question is, "Why don't I just close that tab? I can always open it again." Well, true, but it would lake longer to reload than it does to reactivate. It follows the same principle as a house thermostat. It takes less electricity to keep your air conditioning on low and let it run on those mild days than it does to turn it completely off and and then back on when you want the house cooler..
.3. I almost wish that I was back in the classroom just so that I could try this next add-on from Google Docs. It is called JoeZoo Joe Zoo works on Gooc Docs and can be used with Classroom as well. JoeZoo enables you to give feedback on students' Google Documents by simply highlighting text then selecting feedback statements from a huge menu of options. JoeZoo Express doesn't limit you to using just feedback phrases that they have listed. You can create your own feedback phrases and explanations.
4. The other night I sat through a free webinar about using storyboards to tell stories, illustrate problems and solutions, and to summarize favorite books. The webinar was hosted by Storyboard That. The recording of the webinar is embedded below. Storyboard That also owns the popular Photos for Class and Quick Rubric websites. At the end of the webinar we took a quick look at those tools too.
5. Friday at the Movies- This is my tribute to this week. All week, in every building, it seemed as if the students were operating under the influence of a full moon. Yet it wasn't full yet. Well, I have sinced learned that the final eclipse of 2016 will occur this weekend, and it just so happens to coincide with the harvest moon - something we're not going to see again until 2024.
For the second year in a row, this month’s full moon will coincide with a lunar eclipse, with those in Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia are set to get the best view. The event is expected to last for about 3 hours as the Moon passes through Earth’s shadow. Youu can find out more here and since we will not experience it like those across the waters, you can also watch it here: http://www.space.com/34093-harvest-moon-penumbral-lunar-eclipse-2016-explained.html
Regardless, I am going to blame the week's lunarcy on this lunar event.
This week is full of both historic and family friendly celebrations.
9-11 It is overwhelming to think that freshmen who enter high school this year are the first who will study September 11, 2001 as a historic event that didn't even occur in their lifetime. As I was reading articles across the web it was amazing to me that some educators are avoiding the subject all together. While I do realize that 9/11 is a sensitive topic due to the horror of the day, I don't believe we should sidestep it. I found an article put out by the 9/11 memorial that has some good ideas for broaching the subject with students. You could also visit the 9/11 Memorial site for more lesson plan ideas.
9-12 is National Day of Encouragement. The National Day of Encouragement in the United States was announced in 2007 and occurs each year on September 12. The Encouragement Foundation at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas launched an effort to get Americans to participate in this Day of Encouragement. Why not try to have your students create a positive meme. Most folks know that memes are typically sarcastic but have your students turn the tables on a sarcastic meme. Cheezeburger is pretty safe and easy for students in grades 4 & up. Or you could use READ Write Think's Comic Creator to have your students create comics that are encouraging.
9-13 is Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day! Originally pioneered by the Young Chefs Academy, this is a fun movement with its roots in a serious cause. It was designed to help children start thinking about healthy eating choices. For young children you may just want them to plan the dinner and then help you with the preps. Older children could plan, shop, and then prepare the entire dinner. Wouldn't it be amazing to see our Facebook pages fill up with pictures of kids in the kitchen.
9-14 On this day in history, Francis Key Scott Wrote “The Star Spangled Banner in 1814. Children know that this song plays at the beginning of many of our sporting events but they often do not understand the history behind the song. You can find lesson plans and videos on the The History Channel Site.
9-15 is International Dot Day! The website by Peter Reynolds posts, "Imagine the power and potential of millions of people around the world connecting, collaborating, creating and celebrating all that creativity inspires and invites." What a fun day! On Dot Day students could be encouraged to wear dots, polka dots or paint their faces with dots. Read the book, The Dot by Peter Reynolds or show the Youtube video of the story being read. You can then teach your students The Dot Song. Have them create a dot and pull all the dots together into a Google Slide Show to share with parents or create a Photostory of all the dots.
9-16 is the official National Constitution Day; however, the real anniversary of the signage is Saturday 9-17. At Constitution Center.org they have some great lesson plans and interactives you can use with your kids.
1. Google forms is one of my favorite GAFE apps. I have recently stumbled across a way to use it to generate lesson plans. Add all the parts you want included in those lesson plans in a Google Form. (Add all of the individual standards as check boxes.) Then view your own form and start filling in information. Use the Autocrat add-on to turn your responses in the Google Form into custom-created documents. You’ll have a document with all of your lesson plan information for each day! These are great for turning in to administration, leaving for substitute teachers or filing away for next year. I have a short and sweet example here. This was my first attempt. I have since tweaked it to look a little more professional but this will give you the idea.
2. SavefromNet is the website I use to download YouTube videos. Check it out and call me if you need help in using it. This is one of my favorite tools! My suggestion is that you download your videos first thing in the morning or in the afternoon after the students leave.
3. Did you know that Google Doc users have a research tool that allows them to look up information without ever leaving their document? Simply open the "tools" menu in Google Docs and select "research." Once that selection is made a Google search box opens in the right margin of the screen. Resources selected from that search pane will be accompanied by a link placed in the footnotes of the document. You can format it in one of three ways: MLA, APA, and Chicago. It is a perfect way to get students in the habit of keeping track of resources.
4. I love Get the Math! Get the Math is a site that provides videos and interactive experiences which shows how math is used in real world situations. Music artists explain how they use math when it comes to things like tempo and rhythm. They talk to a fashion designer about the mathematics of affordably creating clothes for a target price range. Check it out here: http://www.thirteen.org/get-the-math/
5. Friday at the Movies
I love this video! Perfect story starter or Internet Safety lesson!
I love celebrations. I have decided that in addition to my weekly five on Fridays, I am going to try to do a weekly post on things to celebrate. I think everyday should be celebrated!
So as I was hunting up special days to celebrate,
I thought about waiting to share the following but then thought better of it.
Believe it or not today is
Worldwide Fight Procrastination Day!!!
“I never put off till tomorrow what I can possibly do — the day after.”
~ Oscar Wilde
Other events to celebrate this week are:
9-7: National Grandma Moses Day. Grandma Moses teaches us that we are never too old to learn something new.
9-8: International Literacy Day In fact this is the 50th anniversary of UNESCO's International Literacy Day. What a great day to focus your read alouds on multicultural topics!
9-9: My favorite is Wonderful Weirdos Day! Yes, this is a real day to celebrate. This celebration started in Austin TX with the Hippie culture. It's a day to celebrate the uniqueness in each individual. I think this will be my favorite day!
As a lover of trivia, I think a fun anchor activity for early finishers of any age would be to have them daily look up facts about that day to share with the class. Or maybe you could post the upcoming day for homework and let anyone who cares share something the next day.
Of course, this idea is coming from one that would be highly celebrated on Wonderful Weirdos Day!
1. Momentum turns the New Tab Page into your personal dashboard. It combines photographs, inspirational quotes, a to-do widget, weather report and a quick-links widget for your favorite websites. I really appreciate my to-do list presented to me in a cool, organized way every day. Below is a view of mine. In fact, I keep mine as a tab all day and drag the tab to the far left of my browser so that I can refer to it but it is out of the way.
2 Math Landing is a database of mathematics lessons and interactive resources for use in elementary school. You can search for lessons and interactive resources by grade level and or by mathematics topic. You can search Math Landing and access the resources without registering. If you do register you can participate in the Math Landing message board community, share resources, and create personal folders of resources that you find in the Math Landing community.
3. TUOD, you have heard of BYOD or bring your own device. TUOD is my own acronym that stands for Teachers Using Own Device. Several of you have asked me about the wifi code. Let me be honest. I do have it. However, I do not have permission to enter it in for personal devices. I can only use it for division owned machines. The Tech Department has no problem with you using your own machine. However, in order to do so you must put in a help ticket and get your school's IT person to set it up for you.
4. Something else that a few folks have asked me about this week is why their web tools are not working properly or have quit altogether. I did some research on this and have found a possible answer. It may have been as simple as having an outdated browser. In fact for three different people this week their problem was the browser. A simple way to check if your browser is up to date is to visit Browse Happy. Browse Happy lists the six most commonly used browsers, the latest version of each, and links you to the download for the latest version.
5. Friday at the Movies! If you're looking for a short explanation of Labor Day to share with students, take a look at the two videos below.
History of the Holidays is a series of videos from History. Each installment explains a different holiday. The Labor Day video is embedded here.
Why Do Americans and Canadians Celebrate Labor Day? Is a new TED-Ed lesson. Here is their video. And something that is makes this even better is that they include a lesson plan to accompany the video.
Hi, my name is Melanie Lewis. I am an Instructional Technology Resource Teacher for Amherst County Public Schools, located in the beautiful state of Virginia. I LOVE my job! I get to work on my hobby, anything that has to do with computers. I get to work with teachers and students, and I am definitely a people person. Plus, I DO NOT have to give grades. Wonderful, huh? Let me know how I can help you better integrate technology into your classroom.
ACPS' 1st computers
I know only one thing about the technology that awaits us in the future: We will find ways to tell stories with it. ~Jason Ohler