Thursday, July 10, 2014

Technology Thursday

July Blogging Challenge Day 10

Wow 10 days in a row. I can't believe it and am happy that I made it this far!  
Today I am going to write about some of the things I've used in my class and like.  Oh and I can't find it right now, but at the end of the year our admin likes to give out little "awards" and I got the "Teacher who is on top of technology" award  :)

#1 So lets start with the Remind, formally Remind 101.  For those of you who don't know, Remind is a website that allows you to send reminder text messages to students/families without having to share cell phone numbers.  It is also a one way service, so they can't text you back. I used it to send out homework and let me tell you, the kids and parents LOVED it.  I had parents begging me to get all of the other teachers to use it too.  I will definitely be using it again this year.

#2 Next is Edmodo.  My kids love Edmodo and so do I.  I stated using it two years ago when I was flipping my notes.  I didn't use it as much last year because I wanted to try out our new textbook the way the lessons were  laid out the first year to get to know it better before flipping.  One thing I know for sure is that I am going to go back using Edmodo this year. The way I do my flip is really just record how to make the foldable or what notes to go into the INBs.  Plus I really like one of the new features they just introduced: Snapshot.  It is a quick way to give a common core assessment.  I tried it out at the end of the year and the reports were really useful.  I can't wait to use it this year for real.  I've archived my classes already so unfortunately I can't share any of the reports. :(

#3 XtraMath-This is a very basic "basic skills" (add, subtract, multiply, divide)  practice site.  It is free, gives good reports and I think it really helps my students in exactly what they need to practice.

#4 Socrative- This is one that I really like, but haven't used to its fullest potential.  We just got new wifi routers in my school about the middle of last year so I just started playing around with stuff like this in class since before the upgrade, it was hard to get all of my students up and running.  Another thing that sort of holds me back on these types of apps is that we are not truly a 1:1 school.  We have 10 iPads for math and science, and a cart for general use with about 20 more I think, and then about 18 laptops, but I have to share with pretty much the whole school.  Still, I like this app and I like using it for reviews more than I like playing PowerPoint Jeopardy games.  They have a game option called Space Race that my students really like.  It also works well for teams, so if i can only get a few of the iPads or laptops it still works.

#5 Thinking Blocks- LOVE LOVE LOVE this app.  I don't think its free anymore, it was for a time, but I do think its free on the browser at Math Playground. Which itself is a great website for math games!  Thinking Blocks is interactive bar modeling.  It has a ton of scaffolding and really teaches the bar model method.  I really liked that I could let kids "play" with it, then after they were done give them a similar problem and have them solve it on paper. It has a great carry over!

Those are my tried and true, but there are others that I am still playing around with that might have potential.

Wizenworld-This is a game that has different levels and a Legend of Zelda type feel to it.  You are on a quest and have to defeat monsters who give you math problems.  Very cute, my  10 year old son likes it, and now that I'm teaching 5/6 it may have more potential for me!

Nearpod-I feel like this is a really good tool, especially since I am going to flip again this year and I feel that it would work good at a station or center if I can only grab a few iPads or laptops. I haven't really used this to the fullest yet either and the only way I've used it was when I bought stuff made by Cathy Yenca (@mathycathy) which I highly recommend!

That's it for now, I'm sure I will have more that I can add to this list after playing around the rest of the summer!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for this incredibly helpful list! I tried out Remind with a group of teachers, but we didn't end up making a final decision yet about whether to try for next year. Great to hear positive feedback, especially since Remind is so easy to use!