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19 Jun 2012
Comments: 1

iPrep 4 Kinder

“What are the top 3-5 skills you wish your Kindergarten students had before the first day of school?”

This is a session created by Yolanda Barker and myself (both mommies of preschoolers) to showcase how an iPad can support and supplement the acquisition of multiple skills necessary to enter the Kindergarten classroom. After completing some online research, we created a Google Form. Over 80+ Kindergarten NorthEast ISD teachers shared their take on “What are the top 3-5 skills you wish your Kindergarten students had before the first day of school?“.  Based on their input, “iPrep 4 Kinder” was born to showcase how the iPad and apps could support fundamentally essential skills (e.g. spelling name, letter and sound recognition, rhyming, keyboarding skills, following directions, building social skills, color/shape recognition, etc…) which will give preschool students the leg up upon their entrance into the Kindergarten realm.

iPrep 4 Kinder_Presentation

 

Below is a Listly created with all of the hyperlinks and resources for our session, “Hot Apps 4 TOTS”:

[listly id=”1Ik” theme=”light” layout=”full” numbered=”yes” image=”yes” items=”all”]


11 Feb 2012
Comments: 1

iPrep 4 Kinder: TCEA 2012

This was a last minute addition to TCEA 2012’s iPlayground and ran from 4:00-5:00 pm on Monday afternoon. As a mother of two preschool boys (and with a little help from Yolanda Barker), I knew we wouldn’t have too much of a problem slapping a list of preschool apps together that would support skills such as color and shapes, sight words, hand-writing, letter recognition, time, patterns and sequences, and basic math.

The list of 62 apps shared in “iPrep 4 Kinder” at the iPlayground was composed in Evernote and then tweeted and shared with a public URL generated by Evernote.

"iPrep 4 Kinder": TCEA 2012 iPlayground Resource

 

The following day I had the pleasure of sitting in on another iPlayground session the following day entitled “iPads for Young Learners” hosted by Ruth Jungman and Carol Fenley of Alamo Heights who took a slightly different app-sharing approach. Instead of providing an appy hour of fast-paced app-sharing, they highlighted 5 free apps and spoke in depth about how each one was being used in the primary classroom:

  1. ABC Magnetic Alphabet Lite: Students worked in small groups with the task of changing one letter in a word to make it another word (e.g. take hat and make it sat or rat, take rat and make it ran)
  2. ABC Tracer: Students worked individually in work stations and literacy stations to practice writing letters, numbers, and words. A nice feature of this app is that it will correct students that begin drawing at a different starting point in the letter rather than starting at the top.
  3. Doodle Buddy: This is one of my favorite apps and I tend to use it a lot to annotate over images, create scenes, Frayer models and even bar graphs, but had not considered the following task. Students make a letter and then use clip art to represent words that begin with that latter. The same task could be completed with colors as well (green: add clip art for objects that are green). The ladies also mentioned that the app supported improving fine motor skills mirroring tasks like writing letters in the sand.
  4. Sock Puppets: This is another fantastic app and definitely supports creativity on Bloom’s. Jungman & Fenley also discussed how the app supports sequencing, storytelling, collaborative learning, and self-directed learning. Students worked in pairs with the task of creating a video to support one of the eight keys to character education (some of the keys featured were “speak with good purpose”, “integrity”, and “do the right thing even when no one is looking”). When the videos were complete, they would be shared on the teacher website as well as showcased in the technology showcase. (Other iLessons with Sock Puppets)
  5. Flip it! Lite: Jungman & Fenley mentioned that they offer free centers in Kindergarten. In these centers, students have a choice from a limited number of apps. The app Flip it! Lite offers the potential for creating up to 5 books free and supports skills such as logic and sequencing. Students use the app to create animated books that highlight actions such as life cycles, kicking a soccer ball, and jumping rope. While there is no way to email the product out, teachers can take a screenshot or use a document camera to record the action.

"All things Green" created with Doodle Buddy app

 

The ladies also discussed classroom and iPad management techniques. Many of the classrooms have a parent volunteer that arrives to set up the work stations and add task cards. Apps on the iPads themselves are managed through folders on a blank screen. The folder for that day would only house one or two apptivities which limits off-task behavior.

Before the iPlayground session ended, they shared 4 more of their favorite apps: Clifford, My Word Wall, Teach Me Kindergarten, and Word Magic.

Also check out “iPrep for Preschool and Kindergarten” and my partner-in-crime (Yolanda Barker’s) post to iPrep 4 Kinder.

 

 

 

 


18 Nov 2011
Comments: 2

Primarily iProbability

If you are looking for an elementary iPad lesson in the techchef4u kitchen, it was probably cooked up by the ingenious Chef Carnazzo. This probability iLesson is no different. Carnazzo and her second grade class used the app ScreenChomp (featured in “Screen-casting & Problem-solving 4 the Classroom“) as a culminating apptivity from a week of work on probability (e.g. “TEKS 2.11: Probability and statistics. (C) use data to describe events as more likely or less likely such as drawing a certain color crayon from a bag of seven red crayons and three green crayons.”)


Chef Carnazzo Cooks up iProbability

 

Here’s how she did it:

  1. Teacher Preparation: Ms. Carnazzo chose the background pics (clipart from MS Word) and imported them to Doodle Buddy.
  2. Student Choice: Students chose stickers in Doodle Buddy.
  3. Student Assessment: Students had to answer (in written form) teacher pre-generated questions in reference to their picture.
  4. Highly Engaging: Carnazzo originally created the apptivity for an intervention group and, of course, the rest of the class wanted to do the apptivity as well.
  5. Small Group: While Ms. Carnazzo was working with small groups to record their screen-cast, the rest of the class had completed independent practice assignments at their desk.
  6. Student Planning & Preparation: Students used the questions and their answers on the worksheet that Ms. Carnazzo had prepared to craft the narration for their screencast. Carnazzo found it was useful to do a couple of dry runs prior to hitting the record button.
  7. Student Reactions: Students loved the ScreenChomp final project. Carnazzo stated the students really liked the part where their drawings appeared on the screen in the final product.
  8. Other Applications: Carnazzo felt this tool had a lot of klout in the classroom as students do so much problem-solving in math. She plans on using it in the future to have students record and compare different solution strategies to a single problem.

 

Sample other iCreations from the Carnazzo Kitchen: Grammar & Literacy with Tacky Wales, short vowel sounds with Songify, Math fact families with Talking Tom and friends, classifying motion with iCardSort, integrating Math and literacy using Puppet Pals Director’s Pass

 


11 Sep 2011
Comments: 0

Suprisingly Educational, Entertaining, and Engaging

I came across the lite version of MyPlayHome this week. The Lite version gives you full access and interactivity to two rooms, the kitchen and living room. Those two rooms alone kept my preschool son, also known as the app critic, busy for 30-45 minutes. His favorite discovery was that throwing away a piece of food in the kitchen replaces it in its prior location (e.g. table, cabinet, etc…). I later decided to check out the full version and was very pleased with the two extra rooms, bathroom and bedroom. Another fantastic bonus to the app is it will grow over time with more rooms and accessories. If they are taking suggestions, I would request a backyard with a grill, sandbox, picnic table, and flower/vegetable garden. What other toys can you say have that economical feature?

My PlayHome: DoodleBuddy Vocab

With that said, I will transfer my mommy hat to my educator cap… While this app may appear like a “doll house for the iPad generation”, it holds far more educational inspiration than sheer interactive entertainment. Thus, I have compiled a list of 7 ways I would use this app in the classroom:

  1. Have students create dialogue based on what the characters are doing in the house. This would be a great way for students to practice sentence structure, pronouns, and adjectives. (Consider taking screenshots and adding the dialogue with another app… like Doodle Buddy).
  2. Have students practice sequencing. Give students a series of directions or have students come up with a first/next/then structure for a task. (This could also be achieved with screenshots and Popplet Lite.)
  3. Have students practice vocabulary/spelling by taking a screenshot and opening it up in Doodle Buddy and adding words to annotate a room in the house.
  4. Have students discuss their own routines/traditions for getting ready in the morning, going to bed, family time, etc… (Consider having students take a screenshot and then discuss it in ShowMe or ScreenChomp.)
  5. Have students create/solve a math problem based on a scenario inspired by one of the rooms. (Challenge students to find/classify various shapes in each room.)
  6. Have students compare/contrast a room in the play home to the same room in their home.
  7. Have students write a descriptive paragraph about a room.

My PlayHome: Sequencing with Popplet Lite