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30 Oct 2011
Comments: 0

"Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery"

Last week I received an email from Donita O’Hair of Frisco ISD. She sent me a very sweet note: “Hi Lisa, I love your site and have gotton so many great ideas! Someone sent it to me that got it from a workshop. I hope you don’t mind… I used the teachers idea (Ms. Carnazzo’s original) for the sums of 10 activity and redid it. I just had a 5th grade student recreate an example for me.”
 

Ms. Carnazzo's Sums of 10

Mrs. O’Hair cooked up her version of the “sums of ten” video with a teacher task intro and blended it with iMovie. She also mentioned she shared a few techchef4u sock puppet examples via QR codes. She stated they are just getting started with iPads at Borchardt – they have approximately 60 iPads and 75 iTouches.

I am always pleased to find that teachers and technology specialists are using the resources that I and/or other guest chefs cook up. My main reason for blogging is to provide anyone with a healthy app-etite… a tech cuisine that can be consumed and adapted.

Please note that all resources on the site are copyrighted “©2011. Lisa Johnson. All rights reserved. Permission to reproduce materials for classroom use granted.”

 

While permission to reproduce is granted and attribution is not required, I do appreciate attribution in apptivities that are adapted. Mrs. O’Hair included a statement “adapted from an original techchef4u post” in the video notes of her adaptation of sums of 10.

Mrs. O’Hair has also been so kind to share some of her previous and upcoming apptivities and iLessons from her district. I am truly thrilled to collaborate and see what others cook up. Looking forward to a medley of inspiration, collaboration, and technology integration.

Surprisingly Educational Apps: Check out “Surprisingly Educational Apps” – the show that served as inspiration for how Talking Tom and friends could be used instructionaly. (We are now available in iTunes – search directly for “appy hours 4 u” or “techchef4u”)

 


30 Oct 2011
Comments: 0

There's a Podcast for that…

When planning an upcoming 6th grade ACL unit which focused on creative writing, I was asked if there were any apps for horror or spooky themed stories to tie in with October’s festivities. Not finding anything free or age-appropriate in the app store, my next course of action was to pay a visit to iTunes. If you can’t find an app for a topic, odds are you will always discover a podcast for it…

Sure enough, I found Vintage Horror Radio. The podcast show highlights “radio adaptations of classic stories from horror authors, as well as the performances of horror icons like Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff and others”. Some of the shows were even originally aired on CBS Radio Mystery Theater.

Vintage Horror Radio Podcasts


 
The apptivity could be set up like this:

  1. Place students in different listening stations. Each station would have a different episode (teachers are advised to preview and preselect episodes that are age and content appropriate).
  2. Students could complete a graphic organizer on the episode (see “Getting iN Touch with Vocabulary“, “HOT Apps 4 Brainstorming“, and “Quadfecta of Integration” for examples and tools)
  3. Students could discuss elements of radio theater (e.g. use of sound effects, narration, music & soundtrack, and tone and intonation) – check out “sound effects: the art of noise” and “radio sound effects in audio theater“)
  4. Students would then cast, script, and perform a radio show of their own (on a given topic or story) and record it (this can be achieved with the voice memo app on the iPod, iTalk Recorder on the iPad, Caster Free and Voice Changer Plus on any iDevice, or a tool like Audacity on the web).

 

Here are some resources to get you started:
  1. Putting on an Old Time Radio Show (PBS lesson plan for teachers)
  2. War of the Worlds: a Broadcast Recreation (a lesson for re-creating reader’s theater radio broadcasts)
  3. Audio Broadcasts & Podcasts (Read Write Think lesson on oral storytelling and dramatization)
  4. A Radio Drama Project
  5. Using Audacity for pupil radio dramas with sound effects

 


25 Oct 2011
Comments: 0

Tacky Wales: iTool for Literacy

If you follow my blog, you will know that Ms. Carnazzo has quite the iLesson toolkit (e.g short vowel sounds with Songify, Math fact families with Talking Tom and friends, classifying motion with iCardSort, and integrating Math and literacy using Puppet Pals Director’s Pass) for utilizing one iPad in her elementary classroom.

Tacky Wales Student Products


 
Her latest project utilized the paid app Tacky Wales: Create Your Own Story (thanks to a donation from the app developer for the promo code). In Language Arts, Ms. Carnazzos’ class has been working on parts of speech (mainly nouns and a sprinkling of verbs and adjectives).

Tacky Wales Student Products


 
Ms. Carnazzo’s model for executing this iLesson is well thought out and flawlessly planned:

  1. Setting the Stage: Before tackling the Tacky Wales project, students worked in collaborative groups to generate lists of words that fit into these categories (e.g. nouns, verbs, adjectives) as a reference.
  2. Modeling  & Guided Practice: She did one story with the whole class as an intro.
  3. Preview & Preselect Content: She then gave students a list of appropriate stories (topic and age-appropriate for second graders as some titles may be more adult-oriented) to choose from.
  4. Student Input: They voted and chose a title for their group.
  5. Facilitating  Student Efforts: Donette Sis (an Instructional Technology Coordinator) and Jennifer Heine (an Instructional Technology Specialist) came to the class with their iPads to help work with the small groups in completing their selected story. Teachers helped groups choose and input their words into the story framework.
  6. Extensions & Engagement: After completing and reading/enjoying the original story, students shook the iPad to Spoonerize (note: be aware that some spoonerisms may not be age-appropriate – consider re-shaking if you encounter this issue)…which of course they found quite hilarious!
  7. Presentation & Public Speaking: The next day students shared all their stories with the whole class.
  8. Cross-curricular Integration: Each group illustrated the setting of their own story. The importance of the story element, setting, is an integral focus for Reading.
 

Tacky Wales Student Products


 
Hungry for More?: Check out Words 4 Students for a list of free mad lib-like apps and suggestions for how they can be used in the classroom.

 

Thanks Tacky Wales for featuring  Ms. Carnazzo’s lesson on your site!

 


19 Oct 2011
Comments: 2

Quadfecta of Integration: Brainstorming, Goal-Setting, iPads, Collaboration

Mrs. DeForrest and I met up again this morning to cook up another delectable fusion. This time we decided to use iBrainstorm and goal-setting questions to create a collaborative gallery walk activity.

How does the selection and pursuit of goals affect a person’s life?

Students will complete the walk in both reading and english class (each class has a different set of questions) that day and the questions will be used to introduce the unit based on the essential question (in bold above).

Questions for Gallery Walk

 

Here’s the recipe for accomplishing this app-tivity:

  1. Teacher prepares 6 stations with an iPad at each:
    1. Each station is a different number – ranging from 1-6
    2. Each station will have a different question corresponding to that number (print out on large piece of paper and post above or at station)
    3. Teacher will add a new board to each iPad using iBrainstorm. Teacher will label the board according to the station it is placed in: Question  1- Question 6 (e.g. iPad 1 for Station 1 would have a board within iBrainstorm labeled “Question 1” )
    4. Teacher will prepare student task cards for each station (using student directions below)
    5. Teacher will assign each student in each class period to a colored group. There are 6 colored groups: yellow, blue, green, red, orange, purple.
    6. Teacher will assign a role or task to each student in the group (e.g. Scribe for Questions 1-2, Scribe for Questions 3-4, Scribe for Questions 5-6, Final Submitter, Timekeeper/TaskMaster/BoardMaster). Roles can be adjusted as group sizes will vary.
    7.  Teacher will post instructions for submitting final board including teacher email address visible in the room.

     

Gallery Walk Rotation: Colors Correspond with iBrainstorm Sticky Notes

     

  1. Student Directions:
    1. Report to their first station according to rotation schedule (see role/task assignments for Scribe)
      1. Double-tap on the board in iBrainstorm to add a sticky note
      2. Double-tap the sticky note to edit the color to change it to correspond to your group’s color
      3. Type in your answer to the question (may have several stickies for each question for each group)
      4. Tap the keyboard icon (in the far bottom right of your keyboard) or the cork board background to return back to your canvas
      5. Move stickies by pressing and dragging to group or pinch out to zoom in (if necessary)
    2. Report to second station according to rotation schedule and complete same process (see role/task assignments for Scribe)
    3. Report to third-sixth stations using same process and instructions
    4. At last station (after answers to final question have been posted on board), follow Final Submitter instructions:
      1. After last question is answered at last station, tap square with arrow in upper right hand corner of screen to submit
      2. Tap “Send in Email
      3. To: “Teacher email” you have been given (e.g. anyteacher@neisd.net)
      4. Subject: “Period#: Question #: Actual Question” (e.g. Period 2: Question 1: What is goal-setting?)
      5. In Body of Email: “Write group members names and color of group” (e.g. Purple Group: Stefan, Elena, Damen, Bonnie
      6. Tap “Send” (receive verification from teacher that board was received) – should also hear “whoosh” sound
    5. At last station, BoardMaster will shake iPad and select “Delete Everything
 

iBrainstorm: Gallery Walk Questions

Resources/References:

  1. Setting & Achieving Goals for Grades 5-9

 

Also check out these resources:
  1. Getting iN Touch with Vocabulary: iDevice Graphic Organizer Lesson
  2. Take A Chomp Out of Your Learning Goals: Screen-casting to express goals
  3. HOT Apps 4 Brainstorming: Free Brainstorming & Mind-Mapping Apps (reviews, lessons, and resources)
  4. Need Inspiration? Check out 100 Reasons to Mind Map

 

 


18 Oct 2011
Comments: 3

Getting iN Touch with Vocabulary

A fortunate happenstance allowed Mrs. Deforest (our ELAR Facilitator) and myself to land at Ed White Middle School on a day of benchmark testing. At first both of us considered rescheduling our visits but thankfully decided to work together on integrating technology into the upcoming 6th ACL unit instead.

What are some complexities involved in coming to an understanding of ourselves and others?

The essential question drove the activities and technology tools and resources that were assembled that day. Mrs. Deforest already had the videos and readings assembled and had ideas for the activity (e,g, graphic organizer, think/pair/share, gallery walk, Socratic circles, brainstorming, impromptu speech, etc…). I merely had to sprinkle some app-erific seasoning on a few of the dishes to really bring out their flavor…

Resource: One of the first weeks involved students watching a video from a student, Eve Shalen Krakowski, reflecting upon an experience she had in eighth grade:

App-tivity: After the video clip, students would be directed to discuss what it meant to be an “insider” or an “outsider“. As the ELAR department on campus had just received 60 iPads (divided into 3 carts with 20 in each) for classroom use, I wanted to choose a tool that could accomplish the task as well as lend itself as an ingredient to other dishes in the future. I felt iCardSort and a graphic organizer PDF to create a Frayer model would do the trick.

Holt Interactive Graphic Organizers: 38 Total

 

Here’s the recipe for accomplishing this app-tivity:

  1. Launch Safari on your iPad.
  2. Visit http://bit.ly/15hr8m (a bitly version for Holt Interactive Graphic Organizers)
  3. Create a webclip for the site:
    1. tap the box with the arrow on the right of the browser
    2. tap “add to home screen”
    3. save
  4. Launch the site from your new web clip
  5. Select the Web Diagram graphic organizer
  6. Take a screenshot:
    1. press home and off buttons at same time
    2. photo will be automatically saved to your photo roll
  7. Launch iCardSort app
  8. Select an option for delivery:
    1. Teacher creates and beams/blasts default deck: Teacher creates a default deck with labels (“insider”, “definition”, “examples”, “non-examples”, “characteristics”) and students import Frayer Model default deck
    2. Students create deck from scratch
  9. Set the background:
    1. Tap box with arrow on right
    2. Tap Settings/Background Images/Choose Saved Photo/Select Web Diagram
  10. Create a Frayer Model for the word “insider”
    1. Double Tap anywhere on background to create a new card
  11. Layer all cards (grouped so they touch) in each circle before you submit
  12. Email the deck to your teacher (will include 5 groups of text as well as image of model)
  13.  

iCardSort with Holt Interactive G.O. as background


 

Also check out these resources:
  1. Use neu.Annotate PDF free app to annotate PDF (with pens, highlighters, shapes, images, and text)
  2. Use Eduplace graphic organizers in addition to Holt
  3. HOT Apps 4 Brainstorming: Free Brainstorming & Mind-Mapping Apps (reviews, lessons, and resources)
  4. Need Inspiration? Check out 100 Reasons to Mind Map

17 Oct 2011
Comments: 1

Government vs. Puppets

I had the rare treat to sit in on an AP Government class today at Reagan H.S. (Christi Robinson, ITS for Reagan HS and Bush MS invited me to visit) and observe their court case project share-out. Thanks to Puppet Pals Director’s Pass donation, students were able to use the teacher’s iPad to create their own court case puppet show. Ms. Newton, the AP Government teacher, also allowed them to explore other submission venues (e.g. Sock Puppets app, Myths & Legends Story Creator, and video-taping their own sock puppet productions old-school style.)

When the class of 38 students was polled, we found that 37 of the 38 students had a personal iPod/iPhone/iPad mobile device. As I have seen many puppet products in elementary and middle school, it was a great experience for me to see how the same apps could be used in a high school setting. Worried that some of the students would find it childish or infantile, I was thoroughly thrilled to find out that not only did they love the apps… many of them downloaded the apps to their own devices and worked at home to complete the project.

“Students will understand the structure, functions, and powers of Congress, the legislative process, and its relationship the branch of government.”

Court Cases

The Task was to research a court case (they randomly drew one), storyboard their accounts (used the template in Pages), and create a video product that highlighted all of the specifics below:

  1. Name of Case  (and brief summary)
  2. Date
  3. Court Decision
  4. Constitutionality
  5. Impact

 

Since knowing and understand court cases is such an integral part of STAAR and AP exams, creating these shows is a useful and vital tool for students to learn the case as well as review the case before the test (as the majority of the videos were posted to Youtube by students for easy access). Another way to collect these resources for later review would be to use Videodropper and download the student videos to a class Dropbox that could be shared with all of the students and accessed from student devices.

 

In class, we came across the free Court Case app that provides a list of famous court cases and includes the opinion of the court, case citation, dissent, and syllabus. Wish we had found this app prior to the project. Alas, it will still be a good review before students take the exam.
Without further ado… will everyone rise? The honorable Judge Techchef4u will be highlighting these student-created court cases:
 

Miranda vs. Arizona (created with Sock Puppets)

Greg. vs. Georgia (created with Sock Puppets)


Board vs. Education (created with Puppet Pals)

Gibbons vs. Ogden (created with Sock Puppets)

Roe vs. Wade (created with Puppet Pals)

Suggestions & Strategies: As Christi and I sat in on the projects, we made a few notes on suggestions and strategies to use next semester when this project will be presented again:
  1. utilize the court cases app for research prior to storyboarding
  2. utilize T-Chart app to document and weight pros/cons (in this case arguments for the plaintiff and arguments for the defendant)
  3. set a time limit for the video
  4. consider using Videolicious for other video projects
  5. consider using characters to resemble the traits of real individuals in the case (as seen in Miranda vs. Arizona)
  6. use music to create mood and tone (as some students did)
  7. alter the pitch in some apps for students who have high-picthed
  8. create a common tag(s) in YouTube so that they can search later to review
  9. create a shared Dropbox to house the YouTube videos utilizing Videodropper (make sure you select optimize for iPhone/iPod)
  10. set up videos in stations (rather than present to the class as a whole), and have each student complete two circles of reflections for each case  they viewed. (e.g. how did the verdict of this court case directly affect….)

Original Source: Deeper Reading by Kelly Gallagher

 

Many thanks to Christi Robinson, Ms. Newton, and the students of AP Government at Reagan HS for sharing their projects and their class time with me. It is such a joy to see how technology can be seamlessly integrated to foster learning and support the curriculum.

Want More?. Check out other projects and lesson resources highlighting Sock Puppets & Puppet Pals app(s) as well as a follow-up post to this one which includes more student projects.

 

 


27 Sep 2011
Comments: 6

Double Your Learning! Double Your Fun!

 

Carnazzos' Class: Two of Everything

Ms. Carnazzosclass is back at it again – integrating the iPad into innovative learning experiences. Thanks to a gracious donation from the app developer of Puppet Pals’s Director’s Pass, her class received a promo code for the full version including all of the characters and backgrounds as well as the ability to create your own characters and backgrounds.

In Math, Ms. Carnazzos’ class read the book “Two of Everything” by Lily Toy Hong. The story describes a magic pot that doubles everything that is put inside it.

Using her class iPad, Ms. Carnazzo achieved the trifecta of integration melding literacy, mathematics, and technology into this wonderfully crafted iLesson.

 

 

Here’s how she did it:

Two of Everything

  1. Students worked in cooperative groups of 4. They decided together what their number sentence would be and what object they would put into the pot. Then they each had to solve and explain their strategy on paper.
  2. Each group met with Ms. Canazzo to solidify their story plot.
  3. After the initial teacher conference, students got to choose their setting and each student chose a character. (This helped the group decide who would have what lines.)
  4. Students practiced their lines on their own and with Ms. Carnazzo a few times. Then they recorded their final show. (This process took 3 or 4 times to get it right due to…. forgotten lines, background noise, voice recording being too soft, trouble moving their character while they spoke right into the mic on the ipad.)
  5. While a small group was recording, the large group worked on math stations or independent work as the room needed to be quiet for recording.

 

Carnazzos' Class: Two of Everything

Additional Notes: The picture of the pot came from a website that housed a bank of teacher lessons. While the students did not complete an official storyboard (just ran through the dialogue a few times), Ms. Carnazzo suggested that it might help with the flow (… though she did prefer the less scripted quality where it sounds like the students are just talking and not reading lines.) “Two of Everything” Extension.

Extensions & Ideas: If you would like to create a lesson like this or need further suggestions for how to integrate Puppet Pals into your classroom (at any grade level and with any content area)… check out this full Puppet Pals iLesson post.

 


15 Sep 2011
Comments: 1

Clever Carnazzo's Cards

Meritorious Motion

Appy Alliteration: With an affinity for alliteration and all things Apple, I set out to congratulate Carnazzo on her creative use of cards with her class. Julio Barros, the iCardSort app developer, was kind enough to send us a few priceless promo codes for the full incredible iCardSort version. I forwarded one of these codes to Ms. Carnazzo in recognition for her savvy use of Songify and received another c-app-tivating lesson:

Meritorious Motion: Her class had been studying motion in science and had recently completed an empirical experiment to see which type of motion different items would show. After students completed the appropriate activity, she used iCardSort to group items to see what properties (e.f. bounce, spin, slide, roll) items in each group had in common. Students wanted to show that some items could be cleverly classified in more than one group so some are on the lines overlapping 2 groups. Students then brilliantly brainstormed other items that they thought would fit in the different groups. The pretty bright pink cards are their additional ideas.

 

If you are interested in replicating this lesson with your studious students, visit the iCardSort public decks in the next few days for the deck.

Noteworthy Newsletter: Also check out E-string‘s noteworthy newsletter which includes the original techchef4u HOTS Math Vocabulary lesson and some app-tastic Vimeo videos that highlight how to use iCardSort and how the app can be used in a lovely literature circle.

 

 

 


12 Sep 2011
Comments: 0

Carnazzo's Class Creations

Sums of 10 with Talking Heads

One of the most fulfilling parts of my jobs is to know that the technology recipes I create and present in my techchef4u blog are not only well-received but utilized to impact student learning. Ms. Carnazzo, a second grade teacher at Longs Creek in NEISD, has been such a wonderful inspiration for showcasing how these recipes can be used in an elementary classroom. It was a little over a week ago that I received her first email highlighting how she used Songify with her second grade class to practice short vowel sounds. This morning I received yet another email with a link to a “sums of 10” project she had her students complete with the free versions of the talking heads apps. Needless to say, if she keeps concocting these app-tastic lessons, I may just have to create a section for her on my blog entitled: Carnazzo’s Class Creations.

Carnazzo's Class Creation

Intrigued, I wanted to gain a little more insight in to her classroom and project management for the device. With only one iPad for her classroom, here is how she structured her latest creation:

  1. Students worked with a partner. They were given time to practice their portion prior to recording.
  2. While Ms. Carnazzo worked with the partners in a “quiet spot” to record their individual songs, the large group was playing a Tens Go Fish game
  3. When recording, one student would sing the first part and the other student would sing the response
  4. After all of the students had recorded, Ms. Carnazzo emailed the videos to herself and compiled them in iMovie to create one complete song.

 

While the students LOVE using the iPad any time, they are so proud of their products and always want to know when they will be posted online to share with their parents. What an app-laudable way to keep parents informed and to highlight student products while integrating technology to impact student learning!

Thanks to a generous PuppetPals Director’s Pass code donation, Ms. Carnazzo’s class (and a few others in the district) will be concocting a puppet show creation in the near future. Stay tuned for app-erific greatness!

The apps discussed here were highlighted in our

“appy hour 4 u”: surprisingly educational apps show.


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