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31 Jan 2012
Comments: 2

On Fire for Bloom's

Hot Apps 4 HOTS

Just finished a Super Saturday “Hot Apps 4 HOTS” workshop. Wish I had come across Brad Wilson’s “App Learning Tasks” sooner. What a fantastic resource! Have included his site with seven others I thought might be useful for promoting higher order thinking skills when utilizing an iDevice.

Other Bloom’s App Resources:

  1. Kathy Schrock Bloomin’ iPad
  2. Edutopia’s K-5 iPad Apps According to Bloom’s Taxonomy
  3. Edorigami’s Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy
  4. Appitic
  5. Bloom’s Apps
  6. Kelly Tenkely’s Bloom’s Taxonomy of Apps
  7. Teach with your iPad’s Blooms Taxonomy with Apps
  8. App Learning Tasks

 

App Learning Tasks by Brad Wilson: Classified by Bloom's


28 Jan 2012
Comments: 2

Marvelous Music with Michael: Episode 17

This is a supplement to “Appy Hours 4 You” Blog Talk Radio Show: Episode 17: “Marvelous Music with Michael”. In this episode we featured 6 apps (5 free and 1 paid) that could be used for music instruction and creation. For each app we shared a brief description and then ways the app could be used in the classroom (both music and core).We were joined by music maestro Michael Benavides, “Wire the World” blogger and infotainment guru, who shared his app-etite for music and apps. (Check out his first appearance on our show: Music 4 the Classroom: Episode 6).

Michael the Music Maestro

This week we discussed the following free apps:

  1. Groovemaker Free
  2. Animoog $
  3. Sound Drop
  4. Pluto Learns Piano HD
  5. PatternMusic  MXXIV
  6. Musician’s Practice Journal Free.

 

Stream this week’s episode or download it in iTunes directly.

Listen to internet radio with Techchef4u on Blog Talk Radio

 

Michael will also be sharing these apps and more at TCEA 2012’s iPlayground.

 


28 Jan 2012
Comments: 1

Paperless Passages with PaperPort

Our ELA and ELL teachers were scheduled to conduct a Super Saturday session for ELL students. They had requested that I support them with some apptivities that would focus on unfamiliar vocabulary. The passage (written by Mr. Wayment) was originally included as a handout. I simply converted the document to a PDF, gave it a public URL in Dropbox, and suggested it be completed in an app like Neu.Annotate PDF or PaperPort Notes. Not only does integrating the iPad provide the teachers with an engaging paperless lesson, apps like PaperPort Notes also provide a way for students to provide responses both in written and auditory form. Consider having students answer the following question “Do you think it was right or wrong for the people at the wake to laugh about things that Mr. Ortiz had said and done?” using the voice recording feature.

Annotate your PDF's in PaperPort Notes and include a Voice Message

 

Follow-up activity: This involved students illustrating their own “common words (see page 17 & 18)” vocabulary word from the list. This would include the word, a definition of the word, using the word in a sentence, and a visual representation of the word. The visual could be a picture of the student portraying the word (if the classroom has an iPad 2) or a hand-drawn illustration in an app like Doodle Buddy. Students had the choice of the following words (howl, wail, cry, moan, sob, chuckle, snicker, giggle, guffaw, and explode with laughter). The final product would be assembled in Popplet Lite. An extension could be using Popplet Lite to place each of the words on a spectrum of intensity (e.g. howl to explode with laughter). Also visit Taxonomy of Ideas for a framework. 

Illustrating Vocabulary with Popplet Lite

 

Check out other iLessons and iResources with Neu.Annotate PDF and Popplet Lite.


25 Jan 2012
Comments: 1

Appy Hours 4 U: Spring 2012

"Appy Hours 4 U": Spring 2012

We’re back for Spring 2012! Check out our Spring “Appy Hours 4 U” schedule. We air live Thursdays @ 3:30 pm.

  1. Notable Apps 4 Note-taking (1/12)
  2. Marvelous Music with Michael (1/19)
  3. Surprisingly Educational 3 (1/26)
  4. Hot Apps 4 HOTS (2/2)
  5. iTools 4 Admin (2/16)
  6. Exceptional Ebook Creators (2/23)
  7. The 1 iPad Classroom (3/1)
  8. Surprisingly Educational 4 (3/8)
  9. Podcasting & Podcasts (3/22)
  10. Great Apps 4 Government (4/5)
  11. Sizzlin’ Apps 4 Science (4/12)
  12. Surprisingly Educational 5 (5/3)

 

Also stay tuned for some additional featured shows with special guests! (schedule to come)

Check us out at TCEA 2012. Yolanda and I will be presenting 2 workshops (“iBuild iPad Lessons” and “Hot Apps 4 HOTS“) and 2 sessions at iPlayground (“iPrep for Kindergarten” 2/6 @ 4 pm and “Surprisingly Educational Apps” 2/8 @ 4 pm).


25 Jan 2012
Comments: 1

Add Some iSpice to your Weather Study

This post could not have come at a better time as we are experiencing all matter of wacky weather this week (I actually spent about an hour with a wet vac in my garage at 2 am to remove rising water).

Wunder Map app highlights precipitation

 

Science 2.8 (A): “measure, record, and graph weather information, including temperature, wind conditions, precipitation, and cloud coverage, in order to identify patterns in the data”

Ms. Carnazzo recently posted student weather reports using the Talking Tom & Ben News app. Prior to recording their weather report, students gathered weather data in their journals using personal observations, the internet, and the app WunderMap (also check out online version). Maps in WunderMap include webcam images and data on temperature, wind, and precipitation as well as multiple layers (e.g. precipitation, clouds, animated radar and satellite, and severe weather).

Carnazzo Student Weather Reports

While this is a second grade science apptivity, the idea can also be translated to a secondary classroom.

Science 8.10 (B): “Identify how global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local weather using weather maps that show high and low pressures and fronts”

How do global patterns of atmospheric movement affect our local weather?

 

In this scenario, students would use the internet to acquire weather data and information on pressures and fronts. The students could then use Videolicious app to create a “weather forecast” presentation. Images for Videolicious could be screenshots from apps (the Weather Channel and Wundermap) or the internet, and actual images taken of the weather outside. Students would also be provided with the vocabulary (e.g. front, high pressure, low pressure, air mass, etc…) they must use in their presentation.

USA Today features National Pressure Data

 

Many times these science-based apptivities are conducted in a series of stations. Consider having students use an interactive tool (other than the iPad… dare I say?) to create their own weather report after gathering their data and research from the internet and apps. This could be done prior to creating the weather report.

Consider Multiple Station Activities to Support Weather Study

 

Students could also create weather reports using Little Bird Tales (and screenshots), or Jing, or SMART recording software and a notebook (see weather forecasting interactive lesson).

SMART Weather Reporting Interactive Notebook


23 Jan 2012
Comments: 0

Notable Apps for Note-taking: Episode 16

This is a supplement to “Appy Hours 4 You” Blog Talk Radio Show: Episode 16 – “Notable Notes for Note-taking”. In this episode we featured 10 free apps (in addition to Evernote) that could be used for note-taking. For each app we shared a brief description and then ways the app could be used in the classroom and how notes could be shared or submitted.

You can GRAPH in Sundry Notes?!!!

This week we discussed the following free apps:

  1. Sundry Notes
  2. PaperPort Notes (formerly Notarize)
  3. Neu.annotate PDF
  4. Dragon Dictation
  5. Flashcardlet (Flashcards*)
  6. iPen Free 
  7. Totes m’ Notes
  8. Note Hub
  9. NJoyNote Lite
  10. Note Record

 

Stream this week’s episode or download it in iTunes directly.


Listen to internet radio with Techchef4u on Blog Talk Radio

22 Jan 2012
Comments: 0

Building Sentences & Language Paperlessly!

A fellow ITS, Brad Cloud, was scheduled to conduct an iPad lesson with some recent immigrants at Nimitz Middle School. He mentioned he was looking for an app that would be useful for sentence building. I instantly thought of Read on Sight Free (formerly Word-Blocks) which was one of the apps that we had featured on our Hot Apps 4 Literacy show.

Read On Sight Free

 

I was thrilled to find an email after the iLesson that not only described how the students used it but provided a useful extension activity as well:

“I just wanted to let you know that Militza and I had a great time today working with her recent immigrants class (7 students) and the iPads. We used an app that would generate a sentence, and then scramble it just seconds later. The students were positively reinforced when they were able to correctly unscramble the sentence. It then generated a new sentence, and the process continued. The app is called Reading On Sight (thanks to Lisa Johnson for leading me to the app).”

Extension Activity in Notes: 

Militza had the great idea of asking the students to take the original sentences and add clauses to them to make more complex sentences. We then asked them to type their sentences in the Notes app, and email their work to their teacher. A totally paperless lesson! It was great.”

Read On Sight Free

 


19 Jan 2012
Comments: 3

Yes, Technology CAN Transform Education!

After reading the Tech Crunch article “Can Technology Transform Education Before It’s Too Late”?, I was a bit shocked and surprisedShocked that there were 15 comments in less than 3 hours and 40+ comments in a span of 24 hours. Clearly the topic is popular. What surprised me was the vast spectrum of comments ranging from arguments between the importance of how and what is taught, lack of focus on critical thinking and need for tools that facilitate retention, lack of parent involvement, and the need for a influx of social media to correspond and collaborate. Some felt technology was a tool and others cited technology-driven innovations like Khan Academy as the answer.

Tech Crunch Article by Prerna Gupta

 

Mobile Devices are a Game-Changer: While I do agree how and what is taught is integral to student learning and achievement, I have to say that mobile devices (especially the iPad/iPod in particular) are a game-changer… paired with purposeful instruction and meaningful application. They are the vehicle for personal, differentiated, and global learning. So how do we leverage these devices to effectively meet the needs of all of our learners?

Katie Gimbar says it better than I can: Why I Flipped My Classroom?. While she does not focus on the iDevices as a vehicle for flipping the classroom, one can see how these devices could easily support delivery of content (and later… application).

Now, How Might this Look in a Real Classroom? Let’s let Aaron Sam’s classroom serve as a model. (Also check out Katie Gimbar’s explanation: “What Does Your Classroom Look Like Now?”)

Now what are the road blocks to this initiative? What if a student doesn’t have access to the videos? What if a student doesn’t watch the videos? Who creates the videos? How are the videos created? Again, we will visit Katie Gimbar for the solutions!

What About Students with No Access?

What If Students Don’t Watch the Videos?

Who is Creating these Videos? If a teacher doesn’t feel he/she has the time or expertise to do so, Khan Academy and other sites have wonderful video libraries. However, Katie Gimbar (and myself included) feel the best author for change is the classroom teacher.

The next question for me… How are these Videos Created/Produced? Katie (through her video series, I feel a unique familiarity with her… so perhaps we can be on a first name basis) chooses the Flip Camera and white board as her tools of choice. Others may opt for an iPod with a camera, an Avermedia Document camera (and/or A+ interactive software), the SMART recording feature built in to SMART software, or Camtasia Studio (Aaron Sams’ and Chris Groff’s choice), an iPevo, or even screen-casting tools like ShowMe, ScreenChomp, and Explain Everything. Choose a tool that is familiar to you and a tool that will deliver your content in the most appropriate way.

In closing…can technology transform education? No, not technology in it of itself. BUT, technology can be used to support initiatives like “flipping the classroom”, differentiated instruction, and personal learning. Utilizing these technology innovations is the key to empowering teachers to impact student learning and in doing so…transform education!


17 Jan 2012
Comments: 1

iBuild iPad Lessons: TCEA 2012

In preparation for our “iBuild iPad Lessons” workshop, which will be offered at TCEA 2012, we have created multiple documents and a SlideShare (all documents and presentation materials will be posted here prior to TCEA).

7 iLessons with 7 QR-Coded Questions and much more...

The three-hour Bring Your Own Device workshop will include:

    1. Where to find the best educational apps
    2. Cautionary Apps & Info on Settings/Restrictions
    3. Sample Student Products & a discussion about consumption vs. production and how students submit work
    4. A Review and Analysis of sample iLessons
    5. A Review and Analysis of 20+ free edu apps with provided integration ideas
    6. An iLesson template and time to create an iLesson of their own using the tools/resources provided.

 

Built in to each section will be time to share resources, tips, and reactions and collaborate with colleagues.

 

Below is the presentation (my apologies about formatting discrepancies between Keynote and PPT) utilized in the course.

Documents utilized in the course:

  1. Appy Integraion
  2. Lesson Template
  3. iBuild iPad QR codes

 

Creative Commons License
iBuild iPad Lessons by Lisa Johnson & Yolanda Barker is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.


13 Jan 2012
Comments: 0

Your Voice Makes a Difference

 

"Outcome: Voice = Change" created in Story Lines for Schools App

Story Lines (“a game of ‘telephone’ with pictures”) was one of the apps that was included in the second edition of “Surprisingly Educational” Apps. I typically email app-developers prior to the show (or after… if I get behind) to let them know we will be discussing their app. Many times they are curious as to what we have to say…especially as we are not just reviewing the app but discussing how it can be utilized and integrated in the education realm. When we first discussed Story Lines, we shared how it could be used to illustrate terms and concepts in multiple content areas:

  1. English/Language Arts: vocabulary words, quotes, themes, character inferencing
  2. Math: vocabulary, equations, expressions
  3. Science: scientific concepts, chemical reactions
  4. History: historical events, historical figures

 

We also mentioned that the Facebook login option and suggestions feature which offers quotes (some of the quotes were not appropriate for all ages or a classroom audience) were elements we were not as fond of. We realized that these features are typically inherent to edutainment-based apps and suggested ways in the show to integrate around them (as listed above).

This evening I received an email from the app developer notifying us that Storylines for Schools has been released based on our feedback. The app has “vocabulary and language concepts that are grade-appropriate, and spark(s) your creativity in a safe, enjoyable manner.” The suggestions section now has four options: Quotes, SAT Words, Elementary Vocabulary, and Intermediate Vocabulary.

Story Lines Comparison created with Sundry Notes app

 

Without going in to a long speech in which I highlight all the ways “you can make a difference”, I will say that we have a very unique opportunity as educators, parents, and app consumers to shape and mold the future of app development for our children and students. Please don’t ever think your voice and reviews don’t matter.

Thank you Story Lines for producing such a wonderful product…and then duplicating and

polishing it into a truly educational gem!