Here are three tools that work-around problems you have every week–maybe every day–in your classes. Sit down with a cuppa and be prepared to be wowed.
Every year, I struggle with a Halloween costume. The teams of grade-level teachers always have themed looks—the Three Bears or Eeenie Meenie Minie and Moe–but I don’t have a team. I also don’t have kids at home to inspire me into painting my hair pink or my nails black.
A few years ago, I found the solution, and now–no worries. Even if it slips by my consciousness until I arrive at school on our Halloween Parade Day to the sight of goblins, Dr Who’s and other fantasies, I’m ready. Here’s my costume:
As a working technology teacher, I get hundreds of questions from parents about their home computers, how to do stuff, how to solve problems. Each Tuesday, I’ll share one of those with you. They’re always brief and always focused. Enjoy!
I’ve been sharing Tech Tips for almost three years. Here are the internet hints readers consider the most important:
Categories: tech tips
The Savvy Cyber Kids At Home
by Ben Halpert
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
View all my reviews
It’s not often I find a successful fiction book that explains complicated adult ideas to children. The last one was Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi: A Math Adventure, a creative story that introduces math concepts like Pi, circumference and radius to young children. I’m not a math teacher, but I can relate that to computer concepts I teach to kindergarten and younger. As with geometry, it’s difficult to explain the concept of ‘internet safety’ to the newest users. Unlike geometry, it must be done as soon as they pick up a mouse and lock their eyes onto the glowing, scintillating screen. Every month, more and more children, younger and younger, play on websites like Jumpstart, Clifford and NickJr. They–of course–trust the adults who love them to keep them safe. Now, we have a tool to do that. Read more
Tagxedos are an excitingly versatile tool that turn words into pictures. They’re word clouds–like Wordle, but more powerful. You can use them to share ideas, collect descriptive words and phrases about events, or evaluate the import of a website. Click here for a review of the webtool and over fifteen uses in your classroom.
We used Tagxedos this summer in Summer PD and I created this how-to video for students. Watch it–if you haven’t used Tagxedos before, you will fall in love with them.
Here are Sara’s thoughts over at Teachers and Technology, and Hardy Leung shares 101 ways to use it.
More video training:
How to Embed Student Work into Digital Portfolios
How to Teach a Tech Lesson–the Movie
How to Set up a Class Internet Start Page–the Movie
Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor/author of dozens of tech ed resources including a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and a wide variety of technology training books that integrate technology into education. She is webmaster for six blogs, CSG Master Teacher, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, CAEP reviewer, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, a tech ed columnist for Examiner.com, and a weekly contributor toTeachHUB. Currently, she’s editing a techno-thriller that should be out next summer.
I love summer. I sit at home, reading, researching, chatting with friends. I make my own schedule, own my own time, start and finish a project without interruptions.
That is a massive high to me.
Why? I’m a tech teacher. That is like a geek+. I teach–yes–but I’m also the first line of defense (sometimes offense) for colleagues as they struggle to use the digital devices populating their classrooms. From the moment I step foot on campus, life spins out of my control. Here’s a typical day–does it sound familiar:
6:45 arrive at school
6:47 a student enters to use lab
6:48 I greet student with a friendly hi and begin work on a lesson plan
6:49 Student asks for help
7:00 Student finishes and leaves; I return to my lesson plan
7:02 Frantic teacher calls–her computer won’t boot up. She came in early to work and now what’s she supposed to do can I come right away?
7:03 I arrive in teacher classroom to help