Saturday, December 15, 2012

Second Grade--Family Heritage Unit Vocabulary

My class is finishing up the Scott Foresman social studies unit about family heritage. They are working on a big collage project related specifically to their personal family heritage, but I also wanted them to demonstrate knowledge of key vocabulary from the unit.

I wrote a list of vocabulary on the board and asked each student to use an app to explain the definition of at least 4 of the words.  I limited the number of vocabulary words because I only gave students 15 minutes to complete the work. I asked them to use either Sonic Pics or Educreations. However, 1 student had lost his voice so he completed the assignment in Popplet.

First and Second Grade--"It's Okay to Be Different" by Todd Parr

It's Okay to Be Different by Todd Parr is one of my favorite books. It has a fantastic message with bright, cheerful illustrations and compliments Project Cornerstone, an anti-bully program used at our school.

Following a read-aloud of the book, all students created their own page in Story Buddy. Story Buddy will allow for a maximum of 15 pages in a book, so we created part 1 and part 2. As a class we brainstormed about 35 ways that people could be different. Each student chose what they wanted to write and draw about so there wouldn't be duplicates. We followed Todd's page format so there were only a few words on each page, with very colorful illustrations. The students had fun making people with purple faces, orange hands, etc.

I haven't included page samples because students wrote their names and included an author photo in the corner of their page.

First Grade--Peer Interviews Using Sonic Pics

First grade students have been working on the common core standards of asking and answering questions. This week they wrote 5 interview questions that could be asked of any peer. They were randomly paired. On the iPads they took a picture of each other, imported the photo into Sonic Pics, and then conducted their interview. They each asked and answered the 5 questions with the photo of the interviewee showing (therefore I am not posting samples).

I was pleased with the fact that I could hear all of them since I have 3 students who talk very quietly and are difficult to hear face to face. I did not proof their questions ahead of time, I asked them to proof each others' questions prior to the start of the interview. When I listened to the final products I discovered that all questions were appropriate, but they did tend to start with the stem "What is your favorite...". This gives us a clear next talking point...what other types of questions could you ask?

Oh, the Downside of iPad Work

It's hard to believe I could write a post with such a title, but sometimes work on the Ipads has its problems. Our school had a loss of Internet service at the beginning of the week for a WHOLE DAY. Boy did that seem like forever! Even though service was restored Tuesday morning things haven't been quite right this week. I'm sure it's not related, but 2 of my 9 iPads are giving me a "no service" message and the work of several students isn't getting emailed, although I can't tie the problem to a specific iPad or even 2 or 3.

So, I love my iPads, but it is a little frustrating when I want to grade student work from their Posterous accounts and it's not there...gotta drive over to school to check the iPads themselves. Luckily this hasn't been a problem until now this year.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Second Grade Math Problem Solving

Students spent a lot of time this week on skill practice apps and not as much time on creating. They are also working on a creation project that is spanning 3 weeks, so look for that before our December break. One project they did email on to their Posterous accounts was math problem solving. They were given a word problem describing a situation in which they needed to add 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1. Students had their choice of apps (Educreations, Chalk, DrawingPad). I am pleased to say they all showed work and they all reached the same correct answer. Here is the most colorful sample, using DrawingPad.

First Grade Book of Food Groups

We spent a lot of time this week using skill practice apps, not as much time with creating. One activity we did do was to create a Story Buddy book of the 5 food groups. This is the science unit we are wrapping up. Students created a page in the book for each of the 5 food groups. They drew (DrawingPad) or inserted from the photo library a photo of a food from each food group, so their books had 5 pages. The caption on each page included an adjective describing the food, the food, and the food group.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

1st & 2nd Grade Super Sentences--Educreations

Today students created a collaborative Educreations video using super sentences. Each student wrote a sentence about a stuffed animal doing something in our classroom. First grade students added an adjective and either a where or a when to their sentence. Second grade students added an adjective, adverb, where, when, and why to their sentence. Students photographed their stuffed animals in action and put the photos together into an Educreations video. They each read their sentence while showing their photo.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

2nd Grade--Strega Nona by Tomie Depaola

While the first graders devoted a lot of their week to Wild Things activities, 2nd graders focused on Strega Nona. They each read the first book as well as Strega Nona's Harvest.

1.  Students individually completed a book report on one of the 2 books using the app Book Report.

2.  They completed a variety of graphic organizers using the Tools4Students app.

3. We practiced quotes this week, learning about where quotation marks and other punctuation marks belong when characters are talking. Students created a short conversation between Strega Nona and Big Anthony using Strip Design.

4.  After reading the 2 books we talked about character traits of Strega Nona and Big Anthony. Students used Popplet to highlight 4 character traits of 1 of the 2 as well as an example from the book that demonstrated that character trait.

5.  We alternate practicing retell and summary. This week students used the iDiary app to summarize one of the 2 books. Generally I leave their use of iDiary open-ended, but occasionally I give them a specific topic to write and draw about.

1st & 2nd Grade--Shopping Cart and Educreations

Our current science unit is nutrition. After learning about the 5 food groups as well as extras, I set the students loose with the app Lil' Kitten Shopping Cart.

First mixed grade level pairs took a screenshot of the shopping list (5 items). They followed the game, finding and purchasing all the items on their list. They took a shot at the end, showing their shopping total. They brought both these screenshots into Educreations. While showing the first slide students explained what food group each item belonged to. On the 2nd slide they talked about how they determined which item to purchase. For example, the game has several types of ice cream and they are sold at different prices. Some students purchased the cheaper items to save money while other groups decided to purchase pricier items because they figured it was higher quality or a larger quantity or a more well-known brand. These were all concepts we had talked about prior to the activity. Finally students had to show work to determine what types of bills and/or coins they could have received back as change.

Unfortunately we ran into some technical difficulties with our Internet and these projects still haven't come off the iPads. However, the activity worked well.

1st Grade-- Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

This week was heavily focused on Where the Wild Things Are activities. One activity involved students creating their own Wild Thing and describing what it looked like as well as its likes and dislikes. After planning on paper, they used either Sonic Pic or Educreations (all chose Educreations) to share their information.

1st Grade--iDiary Farm Entry

As part of our social studies unit the 1st graders have been discussing now and then. In their iDiary I asked them to draw and write about a farm now and then. iDiary is a great app where students can record daily thoughts. Most of the time I leave their use of it open-ended, sometimes, like this week, I ask them to write and draw on a particular topic.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Week before Thanksgiving, several activities

We had several visitors to our classroom this week to see iPads in action. It was also the end of the trimester, and a short week (only 4 days and full of non-tech Thanksgiving activities).

I am ready for a break and on a quest for Hostess products. My own children have never had them and we had planned to get some for my brother-in-law as a Christmas joke related to a dinner we had with him back in August. I thought that would be easy! Suddenly Hostess is out of business and I can't find a Twinkie or Ho-Ho under $5 apiece. So I am off to drive around the Bay Area and hit-up more 7-11s and convenience stores.

Before I go, here are the highlights of last week with iPads.

1.  First & second grade--I asked groups of 2-3 students to think back on their first trimester of learning and choose 1 topic. I then asked them to choose an app and use the app to EXPLAIN/TEACH the concept. Before I set them off, we brainstormed a list of apps they could use to teach. They came up with Educreations, Sonic Pics, Puppet Pals, DrawingPad/Strip Design, Doodle Buddy, Skitch, and StoryBuddy. We also brainstormed topics covered in language arts, math, science and social studies.  What I really liked as I walked around the room is the variety I saw. Every app mentioned above was used by at least 1 group. Students mixed and matched apps in ways we have not done before. Something to work on for the future is that many groups, especially the first grade students, had difficulty teaching the concept. Many of them gave examples, say of facts and opinions, but did not explain the difference. Later in the day each group shared their projects with the rest of the class. Almost every group chose a language arts topic (adjectives, fact/opinion, ...) or math (addition, making a pattern, ...)

2.  First grade students independently used the magnetic ABC app to create a list of 5 ow and 5 ou words. Some of them also had time to use the Drawing Pad or Story Buddy app (their choice) to use words from the list in a sentence and illustrate.

3.  Second grade students read a short anthology selection about reading a diagram and following the directions in the diagram. There were specific skills mentioned in the selection that we discussed. I asked pairs of them to create their own directions and diagram for creating a growing pattern or for naming a fraction, 2 skills we worked on during the week. They had to use the iPad camera to create the photos for their set of directions and then use Strip Design to write directions to go with each picture. They swapped projects and discussed with each other what had been done well and what was confusing about their diagram.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Thankful Popplet

In the past I have asked students to write on construction paper leaves what they are thankful for and we post them around the room. This year instead of write a phrase on paper they each created a Popplet of different things they were thankful for. They had to import a photo from the photo library, take a picture and import it, or draw their own illustration to match.

So glad to know he is thankful for tests (so he can show how smart he is, I was told!)

Assessment Poster of 3D Shapes

We are almost finished with our 3D unit and I want to get a sense of how well students understand the vocabulary for our 6 3D shapes prior to a summative test.

I asked pairs of students to look through the photo library and find photos of the different shapes, draw pictures of different shapes using Drawing Pad, or take a photo of a shape themselves using the iPad camera. After locating a picture of a sphere, cone, cylinder, pyramid, cube, and rectangular prism, students brought them all into a Strip Design. Finally, students labelled each shape with the number of vertices, edges, and faces as well as whether or not it rolls, slides and stacks.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Second Grade--Verb Collage

To "show what they know" I asked students to act out verbs. Using the iPad camera pairs of students photographed each other frozen in different verb poses. They imported the photos into Skitch and labelled the photo with the verb. Each pair created 6 labelled photos. They imported the photos into Pic Collage, re-sized and rotated them to their liking to create a verb poster.

No samples shown because of school district guidelines about student privacy.

Second Grade--Dictionary of Story Vocabulary

As another OxCart Man (Donald Hall and Barbara Clooney) activity transformed from paper to iPad, students created a vocabulary dictionary. Pairs of students looked through the book and determined words they thought would most likely be found in a glossary because they were difficult and unfamiliar. We put the list of the board and had about 15 words.

Pairs were asked to choose 4 of the words and create a 4 page StoryBuddy dictionary. I asked them to define and illustrate each of the words, being sure they created the pages in alphabetical order, of course!

Second Grade--Teaching Plural Rules with StoryBuddy or Educreations

After learning 3 plural rules (add s, add es, change y to i and add es) and practicing some examples, I asked the second graders to become teachers and teach the rules themselves. I gave them the choice of using either StoryBuddy (3 pages) or Educreations. In addition to explaining when each rule was used, I asked them to give several examples of words that used that rule.

They paired with another group and used the StoryBuddy or Educreations to teach each other. They enjoyed seeing examples of other groups as well as critiquing how accurate they were in their explanations.

Second Grade--OxCart Man Season Popplet

Each year second grade students read the book The OxCart Man by Donald Hall and Barbara Clooney. We spend quite a bit of time discussing the roles each family member plays during each season. The book does not specify what the family does during the summer, so we brainstorm what likely jobs they would have (watering plants, pulling weeds, planting some crops).

Using Popplet students created a wheel listing several jobs for each season, who completed the job, and a pencil sketch of the job. Since this assignment was pretty complex, students planned on paper before transferring their work to the iPad.

Due to technical difficulties we were having that day, none of the work has been transferred off the iPads yet.

Second Grade--EasyChart HD graphs

Last week I gave students the option of creating a graph from 1 of 6 sets of data using the app EasyChart HD. This week I asked them to use the same app but I asked them to create their own graph question and data. Also, I wanted them to compare the same data in 2 different types of graphs or charts.

First Grade--leaf poems

This week students read several poetry selections in the Houghton Mifflin 1.2 anthology. We have also been talking a lot about nouns, verbs and adjectives and leaves.

I asked each student to write a leaf poem of 7 lines. The first 3-4 lines had to be describing leaves and the last 3-4 lines had to include verbs that involved actions leaves did or things people did to interact with leaves.

They wrote and illustrated their poems in StoryBuddy.

FIrst grade--DrawingPad Comparison of Words with and without Silent E

Students brainstormed a list of words that changed, but were still actual words, when a silent e was added onto the end. For example, hug and huge.

From the list, or words they thought of on their own, students worked independently to create a DrawingPad poster illustrating the words with and without the silent e at the end and illustrating what the words meant.

In the typical 20 minute period of time allotted for creation projects, students completed 3-6 pairs. Each pair needed to be created on a separate screen. I had thought about using StoryBuddy so they could make a multi-page books, but we have used that app a lot recently and I wanted them to have more drawing options.

First Grade--Now and Then Schools and Vehicles

We are working on the "Changes Over Time" unit in social studies. We spent some time this week talking about how everyday places and objects have changed over time. I put photos of a 1900 classroom and horse-drawn wagon up on the Elmo and asked groups of students to use the StoryBuddy app on the iPad to compare a current classroom and a current vehicle to what I had displayed, using captions to make their comparisons.

First Grade--Riddles Story Buddy or Educreations

In the Houghton Mifflin anthology I asked students to read all the pages with riddles and jokes in book 1.2 (there are several short selections). We talked as a group about what makes a good joke or riddle and the format they are written in.

Groups of 3 students had to come up with 2 riddles. They could use either Educreations or StoryBuddy to tell publish them. It was pretty evenly divided as far as which app was chosen.

First grade--number talk Doodle Buddy

Previously students have made number talks in Chalk, today I asked them to use Doodle Buddy. We talked about different ways to get to a number (add, subtract, skip count, multiply, divide, coins, draw a picture) and I asked them to show me 4 different strategies to get to 50.

In addition, on a separate screen I asked students to write answers to questions we normally discuss when we do calendar. Is the number odd or even? How many hundreds, tens and ones does it have? How would you write it in words? How would you write it in expanded notation? What is one less than the number? What is one greater than the number? All the students were successful with this, but their response format tended to be messy so answers were all over the screen, I'll have to come up with a better template next time (divide screen into 6 boxes first).

First grade--Popplet Showing Story Sequence

After reading Hilda Hen's Scary Night by Mary Wormell, students used the Popplet app to sequence where Hilda Hen went in the story. Since we had talked about prepositions last week, I asked them to include prepositions in their writing. With Halloween and fire safety, it was a busy week and we had a few interruptions that cut down on time. Most students had only 10-15 minutes to work on this activity, rather than the 25 I had initially planned. However, they were all able to complete 2-3 boxes.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

1st and 2nd grade--Election Educreation

Second graders read the book Clifford for President by Norman Bridwell, and I read it aloud to the first grade students. We had a conversation just talking about why people voted for Clifford instead of Mac and how this might translate into people voting in real life.

After students clearly understood that it's a good idea to vote for someone you think can solve problems instead of someone who is nice, I asked them to create their own election campaign. I asked them to create a president for our school. Instead of creating a campaign for a real person, however, I asked them to use a make-believe character such as our school mascot or the tooth fairy. I didn't want to use real students and have feelings hurt when we later hold an election between the different choices.

Students quickly sketched a poster for their campaign and a specific problem their character could solve at school. Once I approved it they created an Educreations presentation, under 30 seconds in length as I wanted them to be very focused.

school president

2nd grade, EasyChart HD

To review graphing skills, I gave out 6 different questions related with Halloween, with several answer choices each. On paper students polled each other to create a tally chart of how their classmates responded to each question. On the iPads, they used the app EasyChart HD to create a graph representing their data. Once everyone create a graph we shared as a class and talked about how graphs looked similar and different depending on the formatting choices made.

The app is easy to use and creates several types of graphs including bar and pie charts. Students can set the numbers, labels, and color schemes.

1st and 2nd grade--iDiary

My students are using iDiary for the first time this year. It is a very simple journal app. On shared iPads each student can create their own password protected diary, complete with color preferences and a mascot. I rotate this app so each student has a chance to create a free-response entry 1-3 times a week. I don't read these entries.

In addition, I occasionally assign a specific topic to a diary entry. This week after seeing the play "Harry the Dirty Dog" I asked students to comment on what they liked and didn't like about the performance. They took a screenshot and emailed it.

In the diary entry students have the ability to add stickers, draw, import a photo, write with a pencil and type. It gives them plenty of ways to express themselves.

Tools4Students, I Just Love It

I am not going to keep posting student work and talking about this app every time we use it, because it gets opened by every student 2-4 times a week now. I just love all the graphic organizers included. It seems that no matter what book we are discussing or what reading skill we are talking about, there's a template to practice on.

Without basic typing skills using this app is really slow, but once the students can hunt and peck okay (most of mine are at about 8 wpm according to Type to Learn) and know where the letters are located, it is a go-to.

This week they used it for real/make-believe in an Ayrn ebook, Edsel McFarlan's New Car, compared an ebook version and paper version of an Anansi story with the venn diagram template, sequenced events in the voting process, and found details to support the main idea of a non-fiction reading selection from the Houghton Mifflin textbooks we use.

1st grade--Magnetic ABC, Silent E and Contractions

This week my 1st graders used the Magnetic ABC app for 2 activities. Tuesday they made a list of words with the magic silent e and Wednesday they listed contractions and the words that are pushed together to make the contraction. These are both concepts we had studied last week or even earlier in the year that I wanted to review with them.

The Halloween background and stickers (new in an update, I believe) had them all distracted for awhile so I gave them 5 minutes to create a Halloween scene before we moved into work mode.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

1st Grade--Response to a couple beanstalk books

Students read Jack and the Beanstalk on MeeGenius. They also read "Jasper and the Beanstalk" by Nick Butterworth (paper book).

As a response to the stories they completed a venn diagram comparison using Tools4Students. They also made a single page in StoryBuddy imagining what they would find if they climbed a beanstalk.

"Pete the Cat Rocking in My School Shoes" by James Dean and Eric Litwin

Since students enjoyed the Pete the Cat story so much that they read a few weeks ago, I bought copies of the next book in the series from the Scholastic book order. After reading "Pete the Cat: Rocking in My School Shoes" by James Dean and Eric Litwin, groups of 3 students created another school adventure for Pete. They had to follow the same format as the book and choose a location that Pete didn't visit in the story. So on the first page of StoryBuddy they wrote a clue to where Pete was going. On the second page they wrote the answer and drew a picture of that place (we could have also walked around the school and taken photos). The third page showed Pete doing something there, along with a sentence including an action verb.

Response to "Aunt Flossie's..."

Students read "Aunt Flossie's Hat and Crab Cakes Later" by Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard and James Ransome. We talked a lot about how detailed each hat description was and how that detail really helped "paint a picture" in our minds, even if we couldn't see the illustrations. The class also discussed the story behind each hat. Students related that to objects that owned that had stories behind them.

For this activity students worked in pairs. One student wrote a hat description on the first page of StoryBuddy. The second student read the description and drew the hat on the second page. Students then talked about how the second student's illustration was the same/different as the way the first student had imagined it.

The pair worked together to write a story behind the hat. They did this on paper, since I wanted longer stories and their typing skills are still slow.

I had hoped to have them choose an object they own, describe it and write a story behind it, but we ran out of time for this part of the activity.

Response to Goldilocks and the Three Bears

In the MeeGenius apps students read "Goldilocks and the Three Bears". I asked them to imagine themselves as a newspaper reporting on Goldilocks being hired at a toy company. They illustrated their news report in DrawingPad and imported that into Strip Designer. Text for their news report was written in Strip Designer. Prior to writing they had to outline answers to the 5 W and H questions.

Paint with Time, Tools4Students and Popplet Apps, Seasons

Individually students used the Paint with Time app to make a forest scene in summer, fall, winter, and spring. They took a screenshot of each scene.

The scenes were imported into Popplet and students had to write a sentence about what they liked about that season.

Additionally, they chose 2 seasons and completed a venn diagram using the Tools4Students app. I asked them to give 3 differences and 1 similarity.

1st Grade--Story Buddy Response to Minerva Louise at School by Janet Morgan Stoeke

Students enjoyed the Minerva Louise character so much that we read another one of her stories, "Minerva Louise at School" by Janet Morgan Stoeke.

I asked students to imagine that Minerva Louise visited their kitchen. What sorts of things would she find, and what farm items would she mistake them for?

Each group of 3 students wrote a 3 page StoryBuddy with their ideas.

First Grade--Magnetic ABC Antonyms

Groups of 3 students used the app Magnetic ABC to create antonym pairs, a topic we learned about this week. I set the bar at 5 pairs, most were having so much fun they squeezed 8 or 9 pairs onto the screen. They took a screenshot and emailed that to their Posterous account.

1st and 2nd Graders Demonstrate Feelings

Ahead of time we brainstormed common feelings such as excited, happy, angry and also feelings that might not immediately come to mind, such as jealous and embarrassed.

Using the iPad camera pairs of students photographed each other acting out 4 different emotions. They took just head/shoulder shots so the focus was really on the face. At this point I gave students a choice. The first option was to import photos to a 4 panel Strip Design where a speech bubble was added that explained the feeling and why they were feeling that way. The second option was to import photos into StoryBuddy and create a 4 page book, with text explaining the feeling and the reason behind the feeling. There was a pretty even split between the 2 options. Since we are working on "expanded" or "super" sentences in second grade, part of the assignment for those students was to write a very detailed sentence.

An example of a first grade sentence "I felt tired because I stayed up late."

An example of a second grade sentence "On the playground at recess I felt lonely because all my friends wanted to run quickly on the soccer field instead of sliding on the tunnel slide."

1st & 2nd Graders--Building a Bridge, Explaining with Educreations

Groups of 4 students were given the task to build a bridge from 18 Legos that would support the weight of a stapler. They had to build the bridge over a long blue Lego, the "water", and they had to use all 18 Legos.

Later, each student created an Educreations discussing what was easy and difficult about the project, how their group used teamwork, and how they were Upstanders. We do a Lego project about every other week so I also asked them to explain what they liked or didn't like about the Lego projects.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

iPad2 and patterns

Last week my students used the iPad2 camera for the first time. I was a little nervous about having them move around the room with the iPad without "hugging" it, but the equipment all made it through the afternoon in 1 piece. Groups of students created patterns and took a photo of them. They imported their photos into Skitch, circled the repeating pattern, and imported that into StoryBuddy to create a book of 5-8 patterns each.  Patterns blocks were by far the favorite object to use in creating patterns.

Trying Out Skitch Maps

Recently our class completed a unit about maps. As a way to assess what they remembered about labelling a map, and as a chance to play with Skitch, I created the following project. Each student opened the Skitch app and zoomed in on the provided map. They used the tools to give the map a title, compass rose, map key and label the city where the school is located.

Plant Life Cycle Educreations

Today I asked my students to create their first individual Educreations video. They were asked to explain the steps of a plant life cycle since we are at the end of growing brassica plants.

1st grade--subtraction story problems

Students created a subtraction story problem, either using Drawing Pad or StoryBuddy, their choice. The advantage I gave for Drawing Pad was more detailed art, the advantage I gave for StoryBuddy was better writing ability.

Here's a sample of each, StoryBuddy on top, Drawing Pad on the bottom.

1st grade--"A Hut for Zig Bug"

This week students read A Hut for Zig Bug in our Houghton Mifflin anthology. I asked them to imagine a different bug creating a home and what household objects they might find and turn into an object for themselves.

They drew and wrote their responses with the Drawing Pad app. Students like the stickers and different art tools available in Drawing Pad. The downside is the inability to type within the app, making it difficult to add captions that are legible. With second grade students I usually ask them to import their Drawing Pad art into a different app, such as Strip Design, and then add captions. However, I wanted to keep things simple for the first grade students only 5 weeks into the school year.

The text below reads, "pompom--pillow"

1st grade--"To Be a Kid" response

To Be a Kid by Maya Ajmera and John D. Ivanko was a recent big book read. Students responded by creating their own book using StoryBuddy. Each student created a page, here are a few samples.

1st grade-- Educreation presentation about worms

After examining worms with hand lenses, holding them, and adding them to terrariums, students read books about worms. They worked in groups of 3 to create an Educreations presentation telling me what they had learned.

Monday, October 1, 2012

1st grade--Tools4Students

They aren't as fast at typing yet, but the first grade students can still get ideas conveyed using Tools4students. In this example they read Clifford's Family by Norman Bridwell and then wrote 3 details about the types of communities (city, suburb, farm) that Clifford visited.

Educreations, safety at school

Here's another Educreations lesson, this time about safety rules at school. Different groups of students created a presentation about safety rules in different places such as school, home, the park, and the street.

Safety at school

Educreations, a lesson in kindness

We spent a lot of time the first few weeks talking about interpersonal skills such as cooperation, compromise, and listening. I asked small groups of students to storyboard 3 of these skills and then turn their storyboard into an Educreations lesson.

working together

Number Talk

One of my favorite less than 5 minute math activities on the iPad is to give students a number and ask them to show me 4 ways to get that number. At the beginning of the year it is usually addition, subtraction, a picture, and tally marks. As we progress through the year students get more creative, combining multi-step problems and multiplication or division.

I usually ask them to do a Number Talk once a week. Any drawing app would work for this. I want students to keep it simple, though, and not spend a lot of time on the bells and whistles, so I use a web clip of There's white chalk, pink chalk, an eraser and that's it.


I love the Tools4Students app. It has many graphic organizers that I use regularly, without the use of paper and a trip to the xerox machine. One complaint some students have is that they are not careful, push the wrong button, and lose all their work. Here are 2 samples of story responses we've used so far this year.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Popplet about respect

Second grade students tried out Popplet for the first time. We have talked a lot of about class climate, cooperation and respect. I asked them to create a Popplet showing examples of respect for the environment, property, other people, and themselves.

1st and 2nd grade--sentence editing

Toward the end of last year I discovered an app called Daily Sentence Editing. There is an app for each grade level. Instead of editing sentences on paper as we have done in the past, students now edit sentences on the iPads.  Here are samples from the first and second grade apps.