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In our district, most of our classrooms are outfitted with mounted projectors, SMART boards, and document cameras. Document cameras are great because they also teachers to project student work as exemplars throughout a class period. We also have IPad lounges, where students can come to use various apps and interact with online textbooks. In addition, teachers have access to clickers, such as Beyond Question, where students can use technology to take quizzes and interact without having to make a lot of noise. Although my district is not a BYOD (bring your own device) district, I know that many local districts allow students to use their IPhones to use various apps in the classroom. Burlington Public Schools in MA has done amazing work with student devices.
Lastly, there are some awesome programs, such as Study Island and Raz-kids that allow students to use their love of technology to learn about Common Core content. Online essay graders are fantastic too, and a dream come true for ELA teachers.
Hope this helps,
I recently started using Kid Blogs (kidblogs.com) with my first graders. They love it! It gives them motivation to write and a way to publish their work. Their parents and other teachers are posting comments on their blogs as well. It's been one of the most successful technology programs I've introduced.
We have a lot of technology integration in our schools. I am a Media Specialist/Librarian at the school that I currently teach at. All classrooms have promethean board, projectors and at least one computer. Several of our teachers use kidblog.org for class. We have a blog here in the media center for book reviews. We use QR codes for activities. Our district is really good about sharing new things. We have a lot on the district website you can check out. www.wbrschools.net/technology.htm
Feel free to check it out. :)
Besides SMART boards, we've recently been awarded a Google Grant. See video below:
I have begun to use Augmented Reality with students. My preferred app is Aurasma, through which you can create your own AR material. There are also several free apps with specific content that is fun for kids and sometimes educational.
3rd graders are writing stories: If I were an Animal. We are creating a class book through studentreasures.com and inputing our stories online in the RTI lab
I think digital storytelling tools are the next generation of tools. SMART/Promothean technologies are great, but too often are still used as teacher-centric tools. When kids can tell their own stories - through Google Docs, Prezi, capzles, animoto, etc - I've seen kids imaginations really come alive. A one-to-one program certainly helps too, and making sure kids have the training to use the tools for what they're supposed to do.
A couple other things. My kindergarteners are using Little Bird Tales to draw people in the community and record themselves talking about them. It's a great way to publish emergent readers' work. I was very disappointed to see the developers made changes to the interface that make the program harder for my little ones, but I'm hopeful they'll listen to my feedback and make changes.
I'm also using Storybird with first graders to write and create online stories and poems. Here, too, there are quirky things that happen when editing text, but I'm hopeful that will be fixed as well. It seems all of these online tools have some quirks that add difficulty (for me, usually!). I sure wish developers would spend more time testing and piloting their programs. Nothing seems to work perfectly.
Does anyone know a good, easy avatar maker that will allow us to save the image and use it in kid blogs?
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