210-710-2434
210-710-2434
05 May 2012
Comments: 2

The iTraits of Character

Ashley Solomon is an amazing 6th grade Reading Workshop teacher at one of my campuses, Ed White Middle School, who truly knows how to utilize the iPads to support learning and exhibit student comprehension while creating an engaging classroom atmosphere. Regardless of the range of learners (e.g. ESL to students with low reading comprehension ability) she has in the class, she goes above and beyond in integrating technology and providing her students with the utmost of cutting edge learning app-ortunities.

Recently, she used the Sock Puppet app to support character analysis/development and practice dictionary and thesaurus skills: 

  1. Prior Knowledge: Students read their weekly Reading Workshop mini-book “Max’s Glasses”.
  2. Pre-assignment: Students completed graphic organizers and discussed the traits of the characters in the short fiction story. (This could also be achieved with Holt Interactive Graphic Organizers annotated in an app like PaperPort Notes or an app like Popplet Lite or Tools 4 Students.) 
  3. Project Foundation: Students were assigned a character trait and asked to practice dictionary/thesaurus skills for the STAAR by locating the definition, synonym, and antonym. Students also wrote a sentence and drew a picture for their given word. (This could be achieved with Popplet Lite, Doodle Buddy, or ScreenChomp.)
  4. Pre-Planning: Students worked independently or in pairs to write a brief 30 second or less dialogue  between two characters.
  5. Assignment: Students create a sock puppet show (using the Sock Puppets app) for an assigned character trait (acting out the dialogue as if the sock puppet was the word “studious”).
  6. Sharing: Students showcased their videos for the class and discussed the featured character traits.
I have recreated a few student samples below based on the scripts Mrs. Solomon provided me with.

 
Studious

  • A: Hi. I am Studious.
  • A: I like to read everyday. I read a lot of books and I read fast.
  • B: How else are you studious?
  • A: I study before my test is given to me.
 
Loyal

 
  • A: I am Loyal because I am very friendly.
  • B: What makes a loyal person?
  • A: I take on a lot of responsibility.
  • A: Loyal people are very caring.
  • B: Wow, it sounds like you are very loyal.

Check out Ashley’s other iLesson and more ELA iLessons.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

31 Mar 2012
Comments: 0

Doodle Zoo

After meeting with the 5th Math Specialist to collaborate and plan, I feel like we have a really good plan for next week’s 5th Math training. The intent was to provide technology tools for teachers that would not serve as “one hit wonders.” Rather, we wanted to provide teachers with a Bag of iTricks that could be used to support multiple mathematics skills… and other content areas. The iLesson below not only reduces paper waste but provides a viable alternative to a pencil and paper task.

The original task included an herb garden plot, I simply took the same numbers and modified it to work with the stamps and images available in Doodle Buddy for iPad.

The iLesson video below was created with Reflections web app that allows screen mirroring of your iPad.

Student Task: Create a square model that represents the 4 divisions of a children’s zoo. Divide and label the square plot to reflect the following:

  1. 50% Carnivores
  2. 25% Herbivores
  3. 15% Amphibians
  4. 10% Aviary

Here are the steps in Doodle Buddy:

  1. Choose a background if appropriate (from the tic-tac-toe icon).
  2. Use the shape stencil to create a square.
    1. Leave some work space on the right or left of your square.
  3. Fill in the square with the color of your choice.
  4. Draw a line to represent 50%.
  5. Add a stamp to represent that division (e.g. lion represents carnivores).
    1. If the stamps featured are not available, check the shopping bag icon to purchase them with Doodle Bucks. You should be give enough default bucks to “purchase” a couple of stamp packs.
  6. Add a text box to represent 50%.
  7. Repeat steps 4-6 for the rest of the sections.
  8. Use a combination of the drawing and text tools to answer the following problem
    1. If the Amphibians are allocated 75 square feet of space, how many square feet are in the entire children’s zoo?
  9. Save a copy of your project to the photo album via the wrench icon.
  10. Send the image via email to your teacher via the wrench icon.
  11.  Include your explanation for the question in #8 in the body of the email.
Doodle Zoo Final Product using Doodle Buddy

Possible Extensions:

  1. Have students complete the square feet for the rest of sections in the children’s zoo.
  2. Have students create their own problem with their own percentages and have their partner solve it. Doodle Buddy contains stamp packs that would lend themselves to:
    1. Animals in an Aquarium
    2. Animals in a Petting Zoo or Farm
    3. Food on a Lunch Tray
    4. Cars in a Parking Lot
  3. Import the image into ScreenChomp and complete the problem solving and explanation with audio.
 
Other iLessons Utilizing Doodle Buddy:

Doodle Buddy was also featured in “Hot Apps 4 HOTS” iBook to support Bloom’s taxonomy in the iClassroom.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

21 Mar 2012
Comments: 2

Mind-Boggling

After setting up iPads for each of the Math teachers at Krueger Middle School, I met with two teachers in particular (Mrs. Vela and Mrs. Trevino) to review a few of the district policies involved with the iPad and explore some of the 50+ FREE Math apps that I had loaded on the devices.

Mind-Boggling Integration using Visual Poet

While perusing the available apps, they had inquired if it was possible to get Boggle loaded. Intrigued…I inquired as to how they intended to use the app with their Math students. Had to share their app-tastic ideas and a few that I added:

  1. Probability of choosing a vowel or a consonant.
  2. Solve proportions based on their scores (e.g. if you found 12 words in 3 minutes, how many could you find in 4 minutes?)
  3. Calculate the percentage of words you discovered (e.g. 6 words out of 107 possible is what %) or calculate the number of words you would need to receive a passing score.
  4. Set up a problem to solve for difference in score or percentage of change (e.g. you found 12 out of 107 words on the first trial and 15/125 in the next trial) playing the same game or a different game (users have the option to replay with the same letters).
  5. Calculate the Central Tendency of the class’s scores (e.g. mode, range, median, and mean).
  6. If students are playing the same game or replaying the same game within a group, determine what the most popular words chosen were. (Each student could play individually, set the game to replay and have the next student replay with the same arrangement of letters.)
  7. If students are playing different games, they could hypothesize how certain arrangements of letters may be easier to form and locate words with than others based on their scores for each game.
  8. Have students create an infographic (see examples of EDU infographics) with all of the data they have collected.

 
Know of any other FREE game apps that lend themselves to being used in mathematics or another content area, please share…

Check out other Math iLessonsiLesson involving probability, and App-tastic Mathematics Part 1 and Part 2 on “Appy Hours 4 U“.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

09 Mar 2012
Comments: 5

What’s Cooking in your iClassroom?

While educators know that math is all around us, sometimes students have a difficult time grasping its impact on our every day activities. Though the apps listed below may not inherently scream proportions, rate, sequences, and percentages, they very easily lend themselves to providing creative and engaging connections to real world problem-solving activities. Some of the apps can be used as hooks and others to provide data for further problem-solving or to spark discussion. (App Screenshots added to and displayed with XNote app with customizable graph paper background).

Real-World Math meets Edutainment curated with XNote app
  1. Farmers Market: This tool provides users with 4 different vendors and 4 different customers. Vendors sell anything from vegetables and glassware to shoes and coats.
    1. Elementary students could create basic multiplication and addition sentences and then solve them, as seen with Ms. Carnazzo’s classor compose and check problems based on change and currency.
    2. Middle School students could create word problems involving unit price, tax and mark up/markdown or research and discuss the difference in price and impact of buying local vs. buying from a corporation.
  2. Kidz Kitchen: Provides users with an option to make pastas and pizzas as well as cook lunch and dinner. In the “making pasta” segment, users guide the chef through the kitchen to complete the steps of making a series of different meals.
    1. Early elementary students could utilize this tool to learn order and sequence of a task.
    2. Middle School students could create word problems that involved proportions, fractions, and conversions for recipes, how much food would need to be ordered so there was the least amount of food waste based on the dishes ordered, or research and map out times for when the chef would have to start prepping and cooking each element of a meal to complete it by a certain time.
  3. Lil’ Kitten Shopping Cart Game: Lil’ Kitten is given a specific amount of money ($25) and a list of items he has to purchase for his family (e.g. butter, guava, ice cream cones, yogurt, bacon). First he has to locate each item in the store, and then he has to choose which brand of item to purchase (e.g. one brand of bagels may cost $3.50, another $3.00, and another $2.50). The goal is to purchase all of the items and still have money left over. While Lil’ Kitten’s list typically only has 4-6 items, he can actually dump up to 10 items in his cart (including items that are not on the list). When he has put all of the items on the list in his cart, he can check out and is provided with a write-up of his original budget, money spent, money saved, etc.. If he has money left over, he can buy a toy from the store as well.
    1. Elementary students could practice creating and solving word problems that involve change, multiplication situations, repeat addition, etc..
    2. Middle school students could again create word involving unit price, tax and mark up/markdown or research and discuss then and now prices of grocery stores.
Don’t take my word for it… Check out Carnazzo’s engaging uses of real world mathematics and edutainment app(s). She recently sent me a delightful iLesson involving students taking screenshots from the app My PlayHome (or My PlayHome Lite), composing a multiplication story and solving it using the app iPen (or iPen Free). Check out several other ideas for utilizing My PlayHome in the iClassroom.
Carnazzo’s Multiplication Stories utilizing My PlayHome and iPen

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

07 Mar 2012
Comments: 1

Chef Carnazzo’s Tasty iCreations

Feeling as if I should award Carnazzo an “Honorary TechChef” badge. Last week her students cooked up cereal sushi using a recipe from Teachers Pay Teachers (also check out Teacher Vision’s printables and resources for recipes). Her team pitched in to buy the lesson and recipes from the site. Students previewed the recipes in the morning and then followed the directions together to complete the dish. Afterwards students wrote their recipe reviews and drew a picture to complement it.

Carnazzo’s Tasty Creations featured in Glogster

The next morning students reviewed the process for making cereal sushi and used the Sequence Events 2 template from Tools 4 Students app (well worth the 99 cent pricetag) to do the flow chart. The Tools 4 Students app actually has 25 templates ranging from Cause/Effect and Compare/Contrast to Problem/Solution and Sequence Events and Timeline. As a whole group, students came up with the steps and then worked in partners to input the steps into the Tools 4 Students template. Carnazzo then created the video with Animoto to highlight the event.

Tools4Students app highlighted in Turbo Collage app

Interested in FREE Graphic Organizers for the iPad, check out:

  1. iBrainstorm: Vocabulary and Gallery Walks
  2. Popplet Lite: Inferencing, Vocabulary, Sequencing, Character Maps, Frayer Models
  3. Holt Interactive Graphic Organizers opening in PaperPort Notes: Annotating PDF Templates and Paperless Passages

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

20 Feb 2012
Comments: 0

Tooning iN to History

I had the pleasure of observing Mrs. Lair’s Regular Reading class this past Friday at Ed White Middle School. She had mentioned that she was using the Toontastic app (which oftentimes goes on sale for FREE) to have students create their own fairy tale or toon version similar to the plight and struggle of the Freedom Riders to illustrate the conflict and resolution between two entities. I loved the cross-curricular integration.

Mrs. Lair provided students with a paper copy of the Toontastic Storyboard template she had created to complete prior to using the iPad. It mimicked the 5 sections of Toontastic’s Story Arc (Setup, Conflict, Challenge, Climax, and Resolution). She also included a statement about each of the scenes:

  1. Setup: only sets up the setting and introduces the character
  2. Conflict: Introduces the problem
  3. Challenge: Problem is in the works (action)
  4. Climax: The height of the story
  5. Resolution: How has the problem been resolved? (How does the story end?)
 
Toontastic Storyboard


 
Supports Differentiated Instruction: Beyond the project itself, I was pleased to see how the app itself supported differentiated instruction and multiple learning styles. Within the story arc framework, students could add another conflict or rearrange the current elements. Students also had the choice between multiple characters and settings as well as the option to create their own characters and backgrounds. Some students chose to use the default characters, others drew their own sets, and others customized the existing characters. Some students chose to use mood music and sound effects to illustrate tone and others selected specific characters and colors to represent an emotion.

Sharing/Publishing/Evaluating Student Products: While there is no way to publish without setting up an account, students did save their projects within the app. To work around the publishing issue, Mrs. Lair decided to have students do a gallery walk and will provide each student with a rubric to assess each of the project as they walk around the room.

Check out these iLessons.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

18 Feb 2012
Comments: 2

Tis the Season for iLearning

I have had the pleasure of sharing many of Ms. Carnazzo’s creations in the techchef4u kitchen and thought it was about time I took a trip to her classroom. Yolanda and I had the opportunity to observe Carnazzo in action and assist a group in completing their Seasons project. The weather that day was quite fitting as neither one of us were dressed nor prepared for the torrential downpour.

The first thing I noticed was her classroom management. All students were on task, at a level 0, and were working on the assignment that they were expected to complete. Before the activity, Ms. Carnazzo (2nd grade teacher) reviewed the task and the CHAMP’s Expectations for student behavior. Then students were then split up into 4 groups. One group worked with Ms. Carnazzo on the carpet finalizing their script and storyboard while the others worked quietly at their desks doing independent work. Each group was responsible for a different season.

Carnazzo’s iClassroom

Science 2.8B: Identify the importance of weather and seasonal information to make choices in clothing, activities and transportation.

Beforehand: Before we arrived, small groups had researched info on their season using BrinpopJr videos and the Science text to describe their seasons citing the following elements:

  1. Typical weather/temperature
  2. Types of clothing to wear
  3. Activities appropriate for that weather
  4. Kinds of transportation they might use (e.g. to get to school)

 
Groups had also discussed and written ideas for their Puppet Pals video using the provided Storyboard template. Ms. Carnazzo had pre-selected a seasonal image background from both Puppet Pals Director’s Pass app and Doodle Buddy’s background gallery.

During Class: Small groups worked with the teacher (and Yolanda and myself) to:

  1. Finalize their Puppet Pals ideas
  2. Practice their presentations without actually recording (took several run-throughs)
  3. Record their video (as time permits)

Logistics: Groups not working with a teacher had another weather activity to work on quietly at their desk. In working with a group first-hand I discovered a few things:

  1. You can only practice the script a couple of times before the students start losing interest. I found the best course of action was to practice once or twice with the script, record a rough draft, listen to it, and record one more, and then choose the best of the two.
  2. Passing around the script and the iPad causes a bit of background noise. I found if I held the iPad and handed it to each child when it was their time to speak, some of the noise of moving the iPad was reduced.
  3. The Puppet Pals video file is too large to email. Since the students recorded their show on my device and not Ms. Carnazzo’s, I had one of two options: upload to YouTube as a private file and then download from there, or pull it off when I synced my device at home.
Carnazzo’s Season’s Student Projects


 
If you are interested in how to manage an iClassroom or how to purposefully integrate 1 iPad in to a classroom, tune in Thursday March 1st at 3:30pm as the famous Lisa Carnazzo will be our guest “The 1 iPad Classroom“. If you missed the live show, check it out in iTunes the next day.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

17 Feb 2012
Comments: 3

iSpy a Story

Tasked with the initiative to gather student products created from intra-district iPad Lessons, I sent out an email to my campuses that had multiple devices (see below).
 
Letter to My Campuses
Within a few minutes, I started receiving emails with student work attachments. Many times I have a specific idea or set of ideas for how an app can be used.
 
Blank Story Spine Template in app
Story Spine Teacher-Created Apptivity: It is always refreshing when I come across innovative and purposeful classroom integration ideas as the ones Ashley Solomon (8th grade ACL & Reading Workshop at Ed White Middle School) shared below using the app Story Spine:
 
  1. Grade Level: 7th grade
  2. Content Area: Reading Workshop
  3. Topic/Focus/TEKS: The focus was chronological order/sequence of events.
  4. Quick Summary of the Lesson: The book for this week was, “The Transcontinental Railroad.” I had them use the “Story Spine” app to write a story about the transcontinental railroad. I started them out with the first sentence, “Once upon a time many people traveled to California to search for gold.”
  5. Student Task or Product: They were responsible for finishing the story by looking for dates and keywords like, first, last, then, etc in their book. This was an independent activity. The product was their story.
  6. Teacher Notes: I asked them to email it to me and I printed them. I usually have 1 or 2 students volunteer to read their story. For my Reading Workshop kids, an activity like this would take about 30 minutes. So, it can be completed in one day.  I usually don’t print the same day so they won’t get to read their story until the following day.

 

Student Sample of Story Spine Project copied into Notes app
What really speaks testaments about this assignment above and beyond the purposeful use of technology and cross-curricular content integration is the fact that the students in her classes have not passed the Reading TAKS. Mrs. Solomon actively integrates the iPads at least three days a week to support and improve student literacy and reading comprehension and will be sharing further lessons over the next few weeks with the techchef4u diners. While she doesn’t believe any of them are “earth shattering”, I would have to disagree as I feel they present lots of app-tastic iPadsibilities. Another thing to note is that student engagement in her classroom is on the rise and paper waste is on the decline.
 
For more iPad Mad-Lib apptivities, check out these.

 

 
 

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required
 

12 Feb 2012
Comments: 1

Inferencing iValentines

Carnazzo’s Inferencing Valentines iProject

I was originally quite appy to see a new Talking Tom app (Talking Tom’s Love Letters), but crestfallen when I found it had no ability to actually record sound like Talking Tom and Ben Do the News.

Leave it up to Clever Carnazzo to come up with a way to not only use this surprisingly educational app but make it deliciously instructional. To support the skill of inferencing in reading, students used Talking Tom and Angela to make conjectures on character’s emotions, thoughts, and intentions based on body language and facial expressions. Students used multiple screenshots from Talking Tom’s Love Letters in Popplet Lite to showcase their inferencing skills.

Carnazzo’s Inferencing Valentines iProject

Check out all 7 student submissions: Inferencing Valentines 1 and Inferencing Valentines 2

Hungry for more Carnazzo gems… check out all of her iLessons.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required

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

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

Receive Access to the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker

* indicates required