Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Blog samples

Our new friend Denise Johnson has posted her inservice slides and blog information here.  I did a little "pre-digesting" of the plethora of info she sent and suggest starting with the 2014 edublog awards for best classroom blog if you want to see more classroom blogs in action. And here are the 2014 edublogs awards for best student blogs.  I liked #14 Jarred's plane because it didn't seem too intimidating.  If you check them out, was there one you would recommend?  Any ideas for what might be included in a blog?  P.S.  and leave a comment on a blog you like - I'm sure the author would appreciate it!


Julie and Trina have been very enthusiastic about a news app for iPad called News-o-Matic.  (Julie and Trina, feel free to elaborate on this - or I'm sure they'd be happy to answer questions about it! )  I recently saw a corroborating review and endorsement from  THE journal.  I think I put it on teacher iPads this past summer in the library section so you can see it for yourself.   You can get it free for a while, but it really is a paid subscription that runs through the school year, much like Time for Kids.  I plan to get some subscriptions next year (the cost is $5 per subscription per year using the educator discount), but the question is how many?  Could you let me know if you'd like it on one iPad per class, or both teacher iPads, or a whole class set (supposing that we got more student iPads next year).

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Learning Ally

Zeffie asked about Learning Ally, so let me pass along some info:  
Learning Ally is a service that provides audio tracks (sometimes with highlighted text) for hundreds of published books. The learning ally administrator (Joyce for the Lower School) can create student accounts and books are then placed on the student's"bookshelf" for downloading using either an ipad app or specific software on a desktop or laptop computer. 

This link will take you to the google doc I share with parents when I set up a student with Learning Ally.

Julie, Deedie, Trina, Susan, and Barb have all used Learning Ally and could give you their own take on it!

Start blogging!

Denise Johnson very helpfully gave us a series of steps to go from blogging novices to blogging experts.  We tried out step 1 last week, which was to read other blogs, and I'd like to try step 2 this week, which is to blog!  I'm not going public with this - just us and perhaps some of our techy friends.  So here are some blog starters - pick one and post your response in the comments - just a couple sentences is fine!
-what content are you teaching right now in language arts?  SS?  Do you know if there are any related eBooks?
-have you tried blogging with your students?  Tell a little bit about your experience
-what technology did you try out this past week?  How'd it go?
-what's frustrating you about technology at the moment?