Search Results for: sponge

Nineteen Ways to Use Spare Classroom Time

I keep a list of themed websites that are easy-in easy-out for students. They must be activities that can be accomplished enjoyably in less than ten minutes. In the parlance, these are called “sponges”.

What exactly are sponge activities? The term, originally coined by Madeline Hunter, refers to an activity designed to produce learning during the time taken up by “administrivia.” They stem from Hunter’s teaching philosophy that there should be no wasted moments in her classroom.

Here’s my list, by topic: (more…)

class internet start page

Using an Internet Start Page

This is a great idea for kids. Use one of these free start pages to put everything important there for your child that’s internet-based. Mine includes oft-used websites, blog sites, a To Do list, search tools, email, a calendar of events, pictures of interest, rss feeds of interest, weather, news, a graffiti wall and more. Yours will be different, more geared toward summer activities. Ask your child what s/he’d like there. Maybe sponge activities (internet sites that take just a few minutes to soak up empty time).

I used protopage.com (Protopage is your own personal page, which you can access from any computer or mobile phone), but you can use netvibes. Start pages are an outreach of the ever-more-popular social networking. Most search engines offer them also. They all have a huge library of custom fields to individualize any home page. And, they’re all simple. Don’t be intimidated.

When you get yours set up, on the To Do list, put what the child should do to start each computer time. This gives them a sense of independence, adultness, as they get started while you’re wrapping something else up.

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Laptops

Free Lesson Plans

A couple of times a month, I share lesson plans that will assist you, my readers, with integrating technology into the digital classroom. All are student-centered, age-appropriate methods of collaborating with classroom teachers in subject areas such as science, math, social students, language arts, grammar, spelling, and more.

Want connected lesson plans? Try the Technology Curriculum published by Structured Learning or two toolkits of mixed lessons. They can also be purchased as one of forty-three themed lesson bundles. They’re available through the publisher, or Teachers Pay Teachers.

Here’s a summary with links to the relevant lesson plans. they are organized by:

  • subject matter
  • software (if any)
  • grade level

To access the lesson plan, click the link. If there is no link, it means it is not available for free. You might prefer the the two-volume set, available as a digital e-book through the publisher or Teachers Pay Teachers:

A note: These aren’t updated so you may find expired links. I apologize in advance for that.

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clean puppy

Nineteen Ways to Use Spare Classroom Time

I keep a list of themed websites that are easy-in easy-out for students. They must be activities that can be accomplished enjoyably in less than ten minutes. In the parlance, these are called “sponges”.

What exactly are sponge activities? The term, originally coined by Madeline Hunter, refers to an activity designed to produce learning during the time taken up by “administrivia.” They stem from Hunter’s teaching philosophy that there should be no wasted moments in her classroom.

Here’s my list, by topic: (more…)