Friday, February 8, 2013

Technology Fun in February

We are having "fun" in the lab - and learning at the same time!  It's rewarding to see the students playing a game or activity, concentrating and enjoying their success.  Lots of fun times!

It was exciting to see the Early Childhood students playing on the Chromebooks this week.  They have their own headphones so they aren't distracted by their neighbor and they are understanding how to move the mouse and click on the large touchpad.
They played games from PBS Sprout.

Kindergarten students worked on their typing skills on ABCYa while playing  Keyboard Zoo and Typing Rocket.  They are working on typing with their left and right pointer fingers.

Grades 2, 3, and 5 started practicing their basic math and spelling skills on the World Education Games site.  They "verse" other students around the world and in their own class: 

Grade 1 students practiced keyboarding and then played other educational games on ABCYa.  The keyboarding site took a long time to load, so few students practiced on that site.  They did play the Cup Stacking game to practice typing skills on ABCYa.

Grade 4 students are continuing to blog and learn how to properly comment.  Kathleen Morris, a grade two teacher in Australia created this poster on how to write a comment on a blog:

A grade 3 teacher, Linda Yollis, created this great video on how to comment as well:

Grade 6 students are continuing to work on Quest Atlantis and their missions.  They are gaining "lumens" for their good work and are working towards pieces of their "shardflower".

Grade 7 students practiced their Digitween presentations as well as wrapping up any assignments that needed to be turned into Edmodo.

Grade 8 students evaluated and researched Google extensions to help support learning.  Extensions "live" next to the Omnibox (where you type the url) and enhance the learning experience for students and internet users of Google Chrome.  Once complete, they will present their findings to a live global audience.

Another great week in the lab!
Next week we'll prepare for global projects:

Kindergarten:  K-2 Building Bridges Project
Grade 3:  A Week in the Life Project

Grade 5 and 7:  Landmarks game
Grade 6:  Draw/Describe

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Technology Update - January

What a great way to end the month of January with Catholic Schools Week (CSW). The students enjoyed the fun activities that go along with this special week as well as fun collaborations in the lab.

8th Grade
The students connected with another 8th grade class in Pennsylvania to share their favorite foods using Google Drawing and Google Hangout. More is written here by Mr. McNulty, their technology teacher:

Online Collaboration Project: Each student used a blank Google Drawing that was provided by the teacher to make a Venn Diagram of their favorite foods. Their partner for this project was an 8th grade student from the computer class at the Cathedral of St. Raymond Catholic School in Joliet, Illinois. You can view the example that was used explain the project here. This project was an example of what online collaboration might look and feel like in the future. All students printed and submitted their finished Venn Diagrams. Click here to enlarge the project description.

During the collaboration project we used a Google Hangout to
give our students a "window" into each other's classrooms.

7th Grade
The 7th graders are preparing to present to different grade levels about their Digitween Action Projects. The links to the projects can be found here:

6th Grade
Quest Atlantis - the students are learning how to play the virtual world of Quest Atlantis. They are starting their first mission and need to understand coordinates and read the tasks they need to do. They will also be able to chat with other players around the world. This is an example of what missions and quests look like:

image found:

5th Grade
GAFE - the students just received Google Apps for Education accounts that includes Google Drive, Calendar, and Sites. They created folders in their Drive accounts and next we'll get Google Cloud Print enabled. Students will be able to use their accounts on the Chromebooks in their rooms and finish at home if needed.

image found:

4th Grade
Kidblog - The students are learning to blog with their own!  They each have a blog using the Kidblog platform.  Their blogs are here:  Next they will learn how to comment properly and they would love to receive comments from YOU!  :)
Visit us at

2nd and 3rd Grades
Typing practice - Stretch those fingers!  Students are practicing their typing skills using Dance Mat Typing, a fun and engaging way to learn proper typing skills.  They are learning to keep their hands on the keys and practice memorizing where the letters are on the keyboard.  
image captured:

When they complete a level the students play games on PBS kids.

1st Grade
Keyboarding games - The first graders are also playing Dance Mat Typing.  After a time, they played Dinoventures and Math activities.

Educational games - The kindergartners enjoyed playing Dinosaur Train, PBS Kids, and Math activities.

Educational games - The students loved playing Dinosaur Train and PBS Sprout games.  There are some fun Valentine's day games the students liked to play on Sprout.

Early Childhood
Chromebook fun!  The students are learning how to maneuver the mouse using only a touchpad on the Chromebooks.  They played Sesame Street games and Dinosaur Train.

As January ends, February begins!  You can see what the students are doing on my school site:

Friday, February 1, 2013

Reflection - Workshop Presentation

I am sitting in my room, the computer lab, after a 2.5 hour workshop I hosted and presented about Classroom Blogging.  My room is empty and the school is quiet.  This was the last day of Catholic Schools Week, a week filled with fun, exciting activities and crazy times in the classrooms.  I know it wasn't easy for the teachers to come and sit for an afternoon, but they did and they listened, asked questions, and thought how they could implement blogging in to their classrooms.  They also said it was a bit overwhelming since they only post grades and homework on sites.  But, listening to the many great educators who took the time to present to our teachers and other educators world-wide, and seeing the opportunities they have as teachers and for their students, the blogging world looked a bit less daunting!

THANK YOU Effie, Louise, Paula, Joe, and John who presented live through Google Hangout On Air.  Thank you Karen, Anne and Larissa who posted videos about how they blog in their classroom because time zones and other commitments wouldn't allow them to present live.  Thank you to my staff who listened attentively on a Friday afternoon - the end of Catholic Schools Week!

All links/resources can be found on the EVPD wiki.  We had an awesome backchannel, too on Today's Meet.  This is the Google Doc of the backchannel.  The video was recorded and can be viewed on my YouTube page.