Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Free Tech Courses for Ohio Teachers

Two courses FREE for you. Each of these courses are 5 contact hours. I took the first one and learned a lot and it was easy to navigate. You can set aside an hour a day for a week or 20 minutes a week and stretch it out. Sometimes you are even entered into a drawing for free stuff just for taking the free course. I took the totally online version of the course.

Learning for the Digital Age explores the role of technology in supporting critical thinking, problem solving, teamwork and communication. This course gets teachers learning in an online community and show some apps students are already using.

Learning for the Mobile Age is CET’s response to the need for an introductory workshop that addresses some of the challenges brought on by mobile learning. Seems like the perfect idea for schools working with one-to-one devices.


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Using Google Drive to Share/Edit Classroom Documents

I’m finding it very convenient to use Google docs for all of my classes. I can share docs with my students and edit their work. They can work on team projects, and if they don’t have access to printers, they can share their work with me and I can print their work as needed.

Share with students.
This works for students that do and don't have Google accounts. I like to share files with my elementary students on my class webpage. Uploading files to Google Drive allows you to easily share files with students. You can upload pictures, pdfs, docs, spreadsheets, even videos to your 15GB of Google Drive space. Then you can select File->Share
you will get a link you can copy and share one your class webpage or in an email or even on ProgressBook attached to an assignment. Make sure you change your permissions, I usually share with anyone with the link. Once students visit the link they can download the file to their local computer view it, read it, or…do it!

Students share their work.
For students that have Google accounts they can share work with you too. Students will type their document once signed into Google Drive. (Select Create -> Document) Then students will save their work (it also saves automatically). I can view their work when they share it with me. Students will select File -> Share type your email address and the doc will appear in your google docs. You can create a folder to save all of that class/project and go through and grade them. You can elect to print them as is OR you can select Insert ->comment throughout the document to add comments. The comments are on the document and you can save the file and the student still has access to see your individualized comments.

Want something to send home after you made comments??? Select File->download as -> word document then you can print the document with your comments from Word.

I like the share method because for me I can have my laptop with me (must have Internet access), go through and grade the assignments, and save the changes and print only as needed. So if the assignment is a formative assessment I can see where the student stands without printing but I can still provide feedback this is awesome for rough drafts! They can even share with each other for peer editing.

Of course at any time you can print and add your comments in handwriting if you prefer. :-)

Google Docs and Schoology
All of my students now have their Schoology accounts linked to their Google account. Any document they worked on in Schoology can now easily be submitted to a Schoology assignment dropbox by selecting Resources. From resources they will select Google Docs. Connect their account (may have to enter Google username/password), then they can select any of their Google docs to submit to an assignment.

I really like this because we can comment back and forth for editing in Google Docs then the final submission can be turned in to the assignment’s dropbox for me to grade. (See past blog for putting Schoology grades into ProgressBook.)

I also like the Google Drive connection to Schoology as a teacher because files I already have in my drive can be added to assignments, or shared resources. Easily!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Improving Your Tech Skills

There are often many opportunities to direct our students to online learning options. There are also plenty of sites providing teachers with lesson plans, ideas, and strategies.

I found a site that provides awesome lessons for students but also opportunities for educators to pick up knowledge on a new skill. For schools moving toward using Chromebooks there are lessons on Google forms, Google Drive, etc. For schools using Microsoft Office there are tutorials on different versions of the Microsoft Office Products. As a teacher this site does allow you to create an account to save and track your progress however it does not allow teachers to monitor their students or have any form of learning management system (LMS).

So, the site already?? GCFLearnFree.org

GCFLearnFree.org is a service provided by Goodwill Industries of Eastern, NC providing 750 different lessons to improve technolgoy, literacy, and math skills for everyday and educational purposes.

Google Tutorials
Microsoft Office 2013
Windows 7

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Websites for Your Classroom

There are so many resources that it's hard to know where to start. Who has time to wade through them ALL?!

I've posted my 3 favorite "non-tech" per grade. I say "non-tech" because it's difficult to differentiate tech skills versus tech use for enrichment of ELA/Math/Science etc. Although these sites may have lessons for teachers these are my picks for students to use, not for the teacher to get lesson plan ideas (although that may be a side bonus).

Please take the time to look at the ones for your grade and give me feedback for your students/grade level. Are the skills aligned to your group? Bookmark the ones you like, let me know what I should add to future teacher web pages.

Trek's Travels an Infohio resource
Computer Lab Favorites

Trek's Travels an Infohio resource
Fun for the Brain - addition practice
Illuminations - Math

Welcome to Reading an Infohio resource
Know it an Infohio resource
Fun for the Brain - addition practice

Welcome to Reading and Infohio resource
Know it an Infohio resource
Book Flix an Infohio resource

4th - 5th
Discovery Portal an Infohio resource
Math & Language Arts Games
Computer Lab Favorites

6th - 8th
Discovery Portal an Infohio resource
Illuminations - Math
Create a Graph

9th - 12th
Illuminations - Math
Khan Academy I like Khan Academy because my students can sign up with a Google account they already have, I can be signed in with my Google account and I can coach them, see the lessons they complete and their quiz scores and I can assign different videos for different levels for enrichment or to reteach.
Learning Express Library

Don't forget we have licenses for Raz-kids, Sumdog, and MobiMax too!