Online classroom

I have just had a great hour with six students who have their own personal blog starting last week.  This was the first online session so it was very much let’s look at what we can do with the Blackboard Collaborate classroom.

  • Students learnt how to use smiley faces to show they understood what was happening and G. worked out how to use the confused face as well.
  • They learnt how to put up their hand in class if they wanted to have the microphone to speak to the rest of us – used the talk button and put hand down.
  • Then we had fun with the whiteboard tools – finding cups of coffee, maths symbols, making yellow ellipses.
  • We added a smiley face to a map of Tasmania to show where we were based
  • Finally we took a web tour of the main student bloggers blog, so they would know what the instructions were for the next three activities on their blogs.

The link to the online classroom is on the main student bloggers blog under the get help here link. You need Java enabled on your computer and if using wireless, make sure you choose that instead of Cable/DSL when it asks.  Allow about 10 minutes to set up your computer before the online lesson.

I will be holding online classes every Wednesday and Friday from 1.30pm until 4pm.  Any students or teachers are welcome to come and join in and ask questions about blogging.

If any teachers want me to run an online blogging class with their students or other staff at another time of day, please contact me by email which you can find in the sidebar of this blog.

Using mobile devices in your room

Nearpod: I was very impressed with this collaboration tool where the teacher has control over the student devices in real time, can see who has logged out and who is in attendance. Check out the school version where you can have up to 100 students using at the same time. They can also be on any computer not necessarily an ipad and can be using any browser. Follow on twitter and facebook and watch their videos.

Showbie:  is a way to assign, collect and review student work on ipads – paperfree classroom

Display note – share content on your computer with lots of students using multiple devices?

Symbaloo includes a free app to use on mobile devices – create share and organize in the cloud. Lots of resources already curated by other teachers. Basic version free, but can purchase class, school or district licenses.

Want to find some great apps for your students? Check out apps4edu.

Want to create stopmotion on your ipads? New app available for about $10 US

Another place to check out lots of educational apps here at Super Duper.

Educational games and books

Try out some of these websites – money may be American though.

Arcademics – both maths and English, also available as an app

Splash math including an app

Lure of the labyrinth – grades 6-8 pre algebra skills

Brainpop games – maths, science, health and social science games also have related movies to go with them, you might need to join brainpop though it is worthwhile.

One more story – for home, school or library use – classic and contemporary books read by an actor and with musical accompaniment – can be used on phone or tablet – many options for reading the book – free trial at this link

Visual learning with VizZle – great for special needs teachers – ways to create and share visual lessons including templates.

WeVideo – a platform for creating your own videos – 33% discount till end of July

Do you have students wanting to create their own apps? Register now at AppShed. Cost involved.

Have you checked out Professor Garfield and all his different sites?

Improve your students brain power with brainware.

Spelling city includes vocabulary enrichment as well – allows teachers to create spelling lists and children use games to improve their spelling

Storyline online has actors reading great books – includes student activities

Global activities

Want to connect with other classes around the world? Perhaps you could try:

The Wonderment – journeys into wonder from students

Students from Azusa Pacific University (many now teachers) created these projects:

Do Now respond to current issues through blogs and Twitter – for high school students

These students presented many times in the poster section – most activities related to science

Join ePals a global community where learners connect.

 Flat Stanley also has apps now. Join him on one of his many journeys around the world.

Projects by Jen – lots of choices of activities from K-6 – I actually met Jen while at ISTE 2013.

Journey north looks at wildlife migration and seasonal changes around the world

Same Day in March – get organized to join this project next year but check it out from 2013

Follow foraging penguins especially in the Antarctic seas with Penguin Science.

Monster exchange is a writing project around the world – get ready for September start in 2013

Finding and organizing resources

A few great places to find resources include:

Graphite from commonsense media

  • Discover apps, games, websites that have been reviewed and rated by teachers
  • Share with a community of teachers
  • Innovate with the right tools

PolarTREC: Polar region resources – articles, lessons, activities, interactive media

Power my learning – free and flexible way to integrate blended learning into your lessons – portal to some of the best educational games. activities, simulations and videos – search by subject, create personal playlists for each student if needed

21 things 4 students – suitable for students grade 6-8 – interactive program about vital technology concepts

Atomic learning now includes an iPad app

Teaching the inquiry process – includes apps, videos and tutorials

Schools that work – produced by Edutopia – links, videos

Apps in your classroom – apps, lessons, tutorials

Math Landing – resources and tools for primary teachers including apps

Edmentum – lots of different programs and courses for all ages

Cyber Science 3D – interactivity and reasoning – class, school or district license

Take students on virtual field trips around the world – a small cost associated with the site.

Looking at using eBooks in your library? Check out this site. Or check out Brain Hive here.

Do you find it difficult to get the most out of your interactive board? Check out Gynzy with a free trial.

Want to engage your classes inside the pages of any digital book, article, PDF or document? Check out Subtext – also available as an app.

Do you need to use a graphing calculator in your maths lessons? Here is one for free at Desmos

Online databases, streaming video. eBooks and eLearning modules all online – free trial available  at Infobase Learning.

Online resources for adaptive curriculum in maths and science, suited to middle school and high school students

An eReading platform for schools – online annotation, embed quizzes, immediate feedback for students – check it out at Gobstopper


Teaching technology and connecting with other teachers

Teacher playground includes resources, PD, lessons, tutorials

As a teacher, do you want to be more connected as an educator? Join in activities in October – some will be based in Australia even though this website is American.

Here are some online catalogues with useful programmes to buy: ShopK12,

Teachers First – a site for thinking teachers – free membership, 1000s resources, free PD

Want to do some online learning of your own? Check out FLO.

Want to buy, sell or create some teacher created resources? Head to the Teachers Notebook


Organizing resources

Got your own classroom library? Track student borrowing by using classroom organizer. Can also add eBooks to your library.