Category: Holidays

memorial day

Music for Armed Forces Day

Many Americans celebrate Armed Forces Day annually on the third Saturday of May. It is a day to pay tribute to men and women who serve the United States’ armed forces. Armed Forces Day is also part of Armed Forces Week, which begins on the second Saturday of May.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QyKfr8G04Qc&w=560&h=315] [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OI-_wAX1tV8&w=560&h=315]

Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, contributor to NEA Today, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day in the United States is annually held on the second Sunday of May. This year, that’s May 11th. It celebrates motherhood and it is a time to appreciate mothers and mother figures. Many people give gifts, cards, flowers, candy, a meal in a restaurant or other treats to their mother and mother figures, including grandmothers, great-grandmothers, stepmothers, and foster mothers.

Anyone have some favorite websites to share? My list isn’t terribly robust.

Enjoy your day with your children!

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Tech Teacher Appreciation Week

I posted this article last year, got lots of reads, so am republishing with some updates. I’ve included information about:

  • How tech teachers are different than other teachers
  • Why tech and the teacher who manages it in your school has become more important than ever
  • How to talk to a tech teacher (hint: they’re a little different; heed these suggestions)
  • Gifts tech teachers will love

Tech Teacher Appreciation Week: The First Full Week of May

There’s always been something mystically cerebral about people in technical professions like engineering, science, and mathematics. They talk animatedly about plate tectonics, debate the structure of atoms, even smile at the mention of calculus. The teaching profession has our own version of these nerdy individuals, called technology teachers. In your district, you may refer to them as IT specialists, Coordinators for Instructional Technology, Technology Facilitators, Curriculum Specialists, or something else that infers big brains, quick minds, and the ability to talk to digital devices. School lore probably says they can drop a pin through a straw without touching the sides.

When I started teaching K-8 technology, people like me were stuffed into a corner of the building where all other teachers could avoid us unless they had a computer emergency, pretending that what we did was for “some other educator in an alternate dimension”. Simply talking to us often made a colleague feel like a rock, only dumber. When my fellow teachers did seek me out — always to ask for help and rarely to request training — they’d come to my room, laptop in hand, and follow the noise of my fingers flying across the keyboard. It always amazed them I could make eye contact and say “Hi!” without stopping or slowing my typing.

That reticence to ask for help or request training changed about a decade ago when technology swept across the academic landscape like a firestorm:

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18 Easter Websites and Apps

Many Christians celebrate Jesus Christ’s resurrection on Easter Sunday. To non-Christians (or non-traditional Christians), that event signifies a rebirth of spring that is filled with joy and gifts — and chocolate! Overall, it is America’s most-popular holiday with Christmas a close second. The date depends on the ecclesiastical approximation of the March equinox. This year, it’s April 17, 2022.

Here’s a good mixture of games, lesson plans, stories, and songs that can be blended into many academic subjects (for updates on this Easter-themed list of websites, click here):

  1. 18+ Interactive Easter websites
  2. ABCYa Easter Egg Hunt
  3. Classroom Easter Egg Hunt
  4. Easter Color Me
  5. Easter Fun
  6. Easter games from Primary Games
  7. Easter Lesson plans
  8. Easter poems and songs
  9. Easter Puppies
  10. Easter puzzles
  11. Easter Science Experiment
  12. Easter Bunny Song
  13. Easter Egg story
  14. Easter Videos
  15. Easter Word hunt
  16. Here Comes the Easter Bunny
  17. History of Easter
  18. It’s Easter Little Critter

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9 President’s Day Activities

Presidents’ Day is an American holiday celebrated on the third Monday in February–this year, February 19, 2018. Originally established in 1885 in recognition of President George Washington, it is still unofficially called “Washington’s Birthday” by many. The holiday became known as Presidents’ Day after it was moved as part of 1971’s Uniform Monday Holiday Act, an attempt to create more three-day weekends for the nation’s workers. Several states still have individual holidays honoring the birthdays of Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and other figures.

Here are nine ways to celebrate in your classroom including websites, games, activities, printables, quizzes, audios, songs, interactive maps,  crafts, flashcards, videos, webquests, books, posters, trading cards, lesson plans, word searches, puzzles, speeches, articles, animations, biographies, and more (click the titles for the link):

1. Activities

From Apples 4 the Teacher, a well-known resource site for teachers and homeschoolers, this site provides links to President-themed coloring pages, stories, biographies, word searches, word jumbles, puzzles, and book reviews that can be used to reinforce learning about all of America’s presidents.

2. More activities

Created by Family Education, this site includes President’s Day quizzes, crafts, flashcards, as well as patriotic activities.

3. BrainPop President videos

With the quality and ease-of-understanding teachers expect from all BrainPop resources, this link provides classroom resources on fifteen presidents including Washington, Lincoln, Roosevelt, Madison, Adams, Jackson, Nixon, Clinton, Kennedy, Reagan, and Obama. It also includes videos on the Presidential Election and Presidential Power.

4. Enchanted Learning Activities

From Enchanted Learning, one of the most respected names in classroom printables, find crafts, printables, short printable books, a general collection of activities, spelling and writing activities, math worksheets, US symbols activities, quizzes, and more.

5. Games and online activities

From Primary Games, popular home of a wide variety of edutainment for kids, this link includes a President’s Day Wordsearch, games, coloring pages, worksheets, jokes, stationary, and mobile games.

6. Google explores Presidents

This site is part of Google’s Arts and Culture, reputed to be well-done, visual, and immensely enticing to viewers. It is a curation of websites and web-based resources on each president, as well as general information on life in the White House. Each President’s archive is anchored by his official Presidential portrait.

7. History and background

From History.com, this is one of the most comprehensive, engaging collections of Presidents Day activities you’ll find online. It includes videos, animations, Presidential speeches, and articles as well as background on the White House and the holiday itself.

8. Learn about each President

Curated by WhiteHouse.gov, this site includes links to each President. From there, you get a fairly short though comprehensive biography of each president, interesting facts, and the part he played in creating the nation.

9. Presidential Timeline

From Education World, this lesson plan guides students and teachers in creating a timeline of events in the life of the president. It includes materials required, time allotted, objectives, lesson plan, assessments, and tie-ins to academic subjects.

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There you are — nine highly-differentiated activities for students on President’s Day. Do you have a favorite I missed?


Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, contributor to NEA Today, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.