My goal through this post is to pass on five of the best ideas from this conference that I hope you will enjoy and try to implement into your classroom.
Tellagami: This app allows students to create an avatar and then narrate along with a scene. I could think of a hundred things students could use this for. A few ideas are giving a summary of a book, explaining a math problem, a ticket out the door about what they have learned, a writing prompt to inspire other students... ahh the possibilities are endless.
The best part, this app is FREE! App Store: Tellagami
Have you ever had the experience of trying to get all 30 plus kids on the right website with a difficult web address such as this:
Makes you want to rip your hair our right?! Well I have a solution - a cute and easy app called Chrip.
With this app you can quickly add a picture, note, or website to your Chirp. You then "chirp" our your message to the other devices in the room. When the app is open on all the devices, you chirp your sound bite and a link will appear on their device that will lead them right where they need to go. No questions asked! Bam! Save yourself at least 5-10 minutes of instructional time, which is what it's all about.
**Note of Warning: Students can chirp their own messages, pictures, links etc. to each other/any other device in the classroom. Some major classroom management will be important with the use of this app. Think passing notes on steroids.**
Do you wish you had more time in the day to help the kids who don't always get the lesson the first, second, even third time they hear it? Have you ever thought of flipping your classroom? I'm talking about teaching the lesson via video where kids watch the lesson at home, then you review in class, and apply what they learned in class.
Although this idea seems a little backwards, and you may feel as if you aren't need anymore, that is actually the opposite of what is happening. Think about the difference you can make when you are honing in on the student needs in your classroom and making better use of your time. For this idea you can use the FREE app EduCreations.
(A super fast example I made- this is actually a video though that walks students through the process.)
By using Educreations you can create your own video and record your voice in order to teach the lesson through a video. You can pause your recording whenever you want in order to add more detail to your picture or text.
I was a little hesitant at first thinking about having students learn from home, because many of my students don't have access to technology or internet at home, but there are ways to work around it. (You don't have to solely teach this way) Having them watch the video at school during breakfast, lunch, etc. Plus having these videso allows those students who didn't understand the first time to take a device (iPod, iPad, laptop) and listen to the presentations as many times as they need, without requring you to explain it over and over, freeing you to help with other issues as well.
Edmodo!! My new favorite technology friend. Edmodo is an online learning communty where students have the opportunity to interact with their classmastes and the teacher through virtual classroom platform. They can join classes that a teacher creates, turn in assignments, take quizzes, and even communicate with their classmates. We have only scratched the surface so far (I personally enjoy the gradebook that is web-based so I know it won't disappear off my U drive again) but we are excited to explore further and even become penpals with a class in Eastern Oregon.
This is a screenshot of the teacher's main page showing my groups and professional learning communities that I can communicate with for new ideas and help throughout the day.
Here are two different examples of how students participated in an online discussion about one of our Junior Great Books stories. Different levels, but all were interacting together, and using their language and comprehension skills to reach higher levels of understanding.
Did I mention Edmodo is free?! Check out www.edmodo.com for more information and to sign up for your free subscription. If your class is interested in become penpals I would love to hear from you! Leave me a comment or find me on Edmodo. :)
Finally, for some app stacking! The first app is called ThingLink. This app gives you the opportunity to use a picture and make it interactive. You can add links to the picture where you can attach text, videos, pictures, or links to other websites. I made an example of a picture I'm going to use for my after school Newspaper club.
Each of the dots represents something that you can click on that will give you further information. But this is just a picture, if you want to experience all that ThingLink can do, use could use a QR Code reader such as I-nigma to scan the code. Scanning this code will quickly take you to the interactive site where you can try it out for yourself!
You can also make these QR codes with an online QR code maker, then have them ready for kids to lead them to all sorts of fun links, activities you've created, videos, etc. So that's some app stacking- ThingLink, which you get to with a QR code, that was made with a QR code maker, and then scanned with a QR reader such as I-ngma.
So there you go, some tech highlights from the conference. I challenge you to try one new thing and let me know it goes in your class! I would love to hear your ideas, or please share if you have anything else that is amazing and working for you!