app.tivities

Read posts about apps and sites and tools to use in your classroom.
  • CC Image Search Respecting and citing the work of others is an important aspect of digital citizenship. However, it seems to still be largely overlooked in our classrooms. It is important for our ...
    Posted Dec 5, 2017, 8:29 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • Finding Leveled Reading Resources Finding appropriate content online at the right reading level can be challenging. Below, are some of my favorite search engines that are kid-friendly and safe. KidrexKidsClickSweetsearch Elelmentary ...
    Posted Dec 5, 2017, 8:22 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • #hashtags 101 #beachlover#supermom#teacherlearnerHashtags help to organize posts and connect like-minded conversations on tools like twitter and Instagram. Simply put, a hashtag is made of the # symbol and a ...
    Posted Aug 3, 2016, 8:25 AM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • Collage Tools  There is a lot of buzz around the use of infographics for learning these days. Photo collages are a good example of tools that can be used to create a ...
    Posted Oct 19, 2015, 12:30 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • QR Codes - Updated Nuts and Bolts of QR CodesQR Codes or Quick Response Codes can be generated for text and links. Links can be to sites, images, audio and videos, anything online ...
    Posted Jan 5, 2016, 4:47 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • Show What You Think and Know! "With screencasting, it's as if I climb right into my students' brains and get a glimpse of what and how they are thinking about a concept." ADOverview and ...
    Posted May 13, 2015, 11:55 AM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • ShowMe ShowMeClick here to view this ShowMe demonstrating descriptive writing by a 3rd grader for a travel brochure. ShowMe is a very simple, kid-friendly screencasting app. With the updated ...
    Posted Sep 20, 2017, 12:45 AM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • MORE iPad App Challenges I learned of app challenges from Craig Badura's iPad Task Challenges. I tried them out with some of the teachers I work with, and they were a big success ...
    Posted Dec 3, 2014, 8:20 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • Storehouse The Storehouse app is a visual storytelling tool that can incorporate text, still images and video. Because Storehouse can also import images from your Dropbox or Instagram accounts, this is ...
    Posted May 21, 2014, 3:39 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
  • Audio Book Reviews with Croak.it and Storykit There is nothing sweeter than the voice of your students sharing their enthusiasm for a good book! Okay, perhaps on occasion their voices aren't completely sweet...but I love ...
    Posted Mar 20, 2015, 3:42 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe
Showing posts 1 - 10 of 29. View more »

CC Image Search

posted Dec 5, 2017, 8:29 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe

Respecting and citing the work of others is an important aspect of digital citizenship. However, it seems to still be largely overlooked in our classrooms. It is important for our students to understand copyright, fair use and creative commons. One VERY simple way to cover this is by having students practice finding and citing creative commons images for their projects. 

There are two great resources for creative common image searches that I like for even the youngest students:

These are not apps but websites meant for finding and citing copyright-friendly images. Both sites use flickr creative-commons licensed images and "stamp" them with a flickr attribution. I recommend adding a shortcut to either site on your student devices. Images can be used to support student projects.

Not only will students find appropriate images, but the "stamping" of the image presents a teachable moment. Even in kindergarten we can talk about respecting other people's work and the "stamp" placed on the bottom of the image, lets people know who took the photo and that they've given permission for us to use it. Below you can see what the product looks like for each resource. 

The stamp also saves valuable time by providing the attribution right on the image. Students don't have to try to record the URL or other info since it's done for them.
 

Finding Leveled Reading Resources

posted Dec 5, 2017, 8:22 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Dec 5, 2017, 8:22 PM ]

Finding appropriate content online at the right reading level can be challenging. Below, are some of my favorite search engines that are kid-friendly and safe. 
  1. Kidrex
  2. KidsClick
  3. Sweetsearch Elelmentary
  4. Sweetsearch Middle School
  5. Wonderopolis - a repository of articles for kids, Free
  6. Tween/Teen Tribune - news articles with adjustable reading levels from the Smithsonian, grades 4-12, Free
  7. Newsela - a repository of news articles with adjustable reading levels from grades 2-12, FreemiumNewsela screenshot demonstrating an article selected at lowest reading level


















There are a number of ways to find online content or adjust online content by reading level. 
  1. Readability-Score.com will provide you with the grade level of any text or site.
  2. See this playlist from Susan Oxnevad on Search Engines for All Learners. Note that as of May, 2015, google removed their reading level filter. 
  3. Rewordify creates an easier reading version from any URL or text selection. This is a cool tool that you must check out! When you select "Rewordify web page text only" you are able to have the tool teach you the difficult words or create flashcards in a Learning Session. Helpful with English learners. rewordify web site screenshot of flash cards that can be created in a learning session
Other Tools to Make Content Accessible:
  1. On the Mac, you can select any text and right click (control click) to enable the Speech option. The Mac will read the selection aloud. Read more
  2. In iOS, go to Settings/General/Acessibilty/Speech to enable the Speak Selection option. Now when you select text, the Speak option will appear. You can also adjust the speaking rate or highlight words as they are read aloud. Read more
  3. The Mac and iOS Safari browser allows for a reader view. Reader view provides a clean interface with images, sidebars and other distractions eliminated from the page. Readers can just focus on the text. 
Image demonstrating Safari Reader View from jennygrabiec.com.
Image demonstrating reader view in Safari.

#hashtags 101

posted Jul 30, 2016, 10:53 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Aug 3, 2016, 8:25 AM ]


#beachlover
#supermom
#teacherlearner

Hashtags help to organize posts and connect like-minded conversations on tools like twitter and Instagram. Simply put, a hashtag is made of the # symbol and a word or phrase, no spaces and usually no punctuation. 


Here is a concise podcast from Mark Barnes, explaining Twitter Hashtags 


Tweet with #leadupchat

Resources
For the most complete resource on Twitter hashtags, twitter edu chats, and suggestions on who to follow when you are getting started, see Cybraryman!

    More

    Have people follow you on Twitter via text messages (must have tweets set to public.):

    To: 40404

    Message: follow @username

    how to follow twitter via texting

    Collage Tools

    posted Jun 10, 2015, 10:51 AM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Oct 19, 2015, 12:30 PM ]

     
    There is a lot of buzz around the use of infographics for learning these days. Photo collages are a good example of tools that can be used to create a powerful infographic utilizing images, text, video and sound to explain a difficult concept. We will look at  three photo collage tools. Education Technology and Mobile Learning also has a helpful article on creating classroom posters/collages

    Glogster Edu is a really fun collage tool that allows you to include linked videos, audio and text.  The annual license fee that accompanis the online version and the new app, may turn some educators away. You will have to weigh the benefits.  Thinglink is an alternative with many of the same features except that you select one image as the background and layer additional images and videos on top as information labels. Like Glogster, Thinglink has a FREE individual user version and a premium version that allows teachers to create multiple student accounts. Read about the considerable educator discount here.  

    Thinglink how-to video from Richard Byrne 
    Pic Collage is ap(p)-tly named (no pun intended). This FREE ios and android app creates collages with your images. You can also add text and video and create an informative poster. Save your work to the photo library or send by email. There are some social features of the app, that you will either want to turn off in settings, or you can try their new "kid" version of the app. To turn off the social features and image search, see the sidebar of my handout

    Have students synthesize their learning on a particular subject by carefully selecting a collection of images and adding text to show their learning. Use just one image with much text for a report. Use it for sequencing images from a story or directions for younger students. Share collages of field trips or class activities and enhance them with audio in audioboo or another audio app. See my blog post to view other student examples. 


    Photovisi is a simple collage maker that includes a text tool (an important feature for classroom projects). No account is needed. This tool is only web based and does not work on ios.



    Example Student Collage Projects:

    QR Codes - Updated

    posted May 5, 2015, 12:57 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Jan 5, 2016, 4:47 PM ]


    Nuts and Bolts of QR Codes

    QR Codes or Quick Response Codes can be generated for text and links. Links can be to sites, images, audio and videos, anything online that you'd like to share easily. You or students, will need to make the codes first and print them out or post them online.

    Tip: This is a great way to share digital content at Open House. Have parents download a QR Code Reader in advance:
    Dear Parents, please download a QR code reader to your smartphone before Open House so that you can see some of the awesome digital work your kiddo has done. I've included a link to a FREE one that works on all platforms:
    I-nigma is a QR code reader, for all platforms including iOS, Windows and Android phones.

    QR Code Makers 
    • Go to the site http://goqr.me/ to make a code. You will find it is easier to make on a computer than a tablet. 
      • Select the type of code you will make. 
      • Type or paste into the box. Select download. 
    • OR go to the site http://qrcode.kaywa.com/ to make a code. 
      • Choose URL or text and check the static box. 
      • Type or paste into the box and your static code is created. Right-click to save the image. 
    • OR use the Google URL shortener: http://goo.gl/
      • Paste in the URL you want to shorten and it will also generate a QR code. 
      • Be sure to click on "Details" to see the QR code and download the image.
      • Share by email, projector screen, ppt slides, or print it on paper
    • Use my FREE Doc template for saving and printing out multiple codes.

    Examples:
    Other Ways to Use QR Codes in the Classroom: 
    • Audio
      • Use QRvoice.net for a simple text to audio recording and upload.
      • Link to audio for other purposes like class rules, teacher directions, vocabulary words. 
    • Open House
      • Paste codes to students desks for Open House. Codes can link to student-made videos or other work. Parents scan codes at Open House to view their child's work. 
    Resources
    1. View my 5 minute screencast to learn HOW to make your own QR codes. 
    2. QR Code App Challenge - a handout to walk you through the nuts and bolts of making your own QR codes
    3. Tony Vincent's blog article about QR Codes

    Show What You Think and Know!

    posted Apr 30, 2015, 12:19 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated May 13, 2015, 11:55 AM ]

    "With screencasting, it's as if I climb right into my students' brains and get a glimpse of what and how they are thinking about a concept." AD

    Overview and Introduction

    • Haiku Deck - Show What You Know, Making Learning Visible

    I love screencasting for the simple reason that it allows me to capture a student's understanding and thinking. It's as if I'm sitting right there next to them, listening to them think aloud. Not only do I see what they know, but I also get a rare picture of their misconceptions and misunderstanding. It allows me to target exactly what that student may need in order to deepen or correct their understanding. 

    Why Screencasting? quote shared from Will Daggett, "Learning should be an active process..."

    Original image from Mitchell Norris 


    What Can We Learn? 

    Take a look at this screencast from a 2nd grader explaining equivalent fractions. What can we learn from the students' pause, erase and redo portion of the screencast?


    How to Get Started with Screencasting 
    There are a number of screencasting apps out there. If you'd like to know more about different free ios screencasting apps check out my screencast comparing these tools. One of the free apps, Educreations, also has a web-based version that should work on other devices and laptops. 
    Student Examples of Screencasting
    Resources
    Other Pathways into Student Thinking 
    Besides screencasting, there are a number of other ways that technology is can be transformative for assessment when used optimally. Online discussions can be a glimpse into student thinking. There are many free tools out there. Padlet is one that is very versatile, working on all devices, and allowing posts that contain text, images or videos. Kristen Wideen, first grade teacher, has a great blog post about using padlet for KWL charts. She has her students get to the padlet URLs by scanning a QR code. Learn more about QR codes here

    Here's an example Padlet. What do these 3rd graders understand about polygons? 

    I also use Skitch to have students annotate images to show their thinking. Even when in an app, students can take a screenshot, bring it into Skitch and use text, diagrams and labels to show their thinking. What can we learn about this student's understanding of narrative plot? 
    Resources

    ShowMe

    posted Apr 29, 2015, 3:07 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Sep 20, 2017, 12:45 AM ]

    ShowMe


    Click here to view this ShowMe demonstrating descriptive writing by a 3rd grader for a travel brochure. 

    ShowMe is a very simple, kid-friendly screencasting app. With the updated version, it now allows for multiple screens, and it has a text tool. I love its simplicity for very young students. The other attribute that distinguishes ShowMe from Educreations is that it can be replayed on any device from the web. With Educreations, you must have the app loaded on your iPad to replay. Since we will be using QR codes and parents' smartphones at Open House this year, I recommend ShowMe so that parents can scan the QR code and view their child's Screencast video on their phone. Read more about QR Codes and Open House. 

    In ShowMe, like Educreations, you upload your video to the ShowMe website and can search for other lessons. Note: You will need an account to upload to ShowMe and student accounts can be created without email addresses.


    If you'd like to know more about different free screencasting apps check out my screencast comparing these tools. 

    Here are some example screencasts from students:

    #hashtags101

    posted Feb 12, 2015, 2:28 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Jul 30, 2016, 10:29 PM ]


    #beachlover
    #supermom
    #teacherlearner

    Hashtags help to organize posts and connect like-minded conversations on tools like twitter and Instagram. Simply put, a hashtag is made of the # symbol and a word or phrase, no spaces and usually no punctuation. 


    Here is a concise podcast from Mark Barnes, explaining Twitter Hashtags 

    Hashtags to Explore
    #edchat
    #leadupchat
    #edadmin

    Tweet with #leadupchat

    Resources
    For the most complete resource on Twitter hashtags, twitter edu chats, and suggestions on who to follow when you are getting started, see Cybraryman!

      More

      Have people follow you on Twitter via text messages (must have tweets set to public.):

      To: 40404

      Message: follow @username

      how to follow twitter via texting


      MORE iPad App Challenges

      posted May 21, 2014, 4:26 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated Dec 3, 2014, 8:20 PM ]

      I learned of app challenges from Craig Badura's iPad Task Challenges. I tried them out with some of the teachers I work with, and they were a big success. I've created several more and posted them to the right. If you use them, I ask that you please send me a tweet @digichica or contact me by email. See Craig's post to learn more about his idea. I've used my app challenges a little bit differently than Mr. Badura in that I usually bring two challenges of the same "learning genre" and give teachers a choice. Yesterday we were digging into the genre of visual storytelling. I offered teachers the option to create with Haiku Deck or Storehouse. Everyone likes to have the option to choose their learning (something we need to constantly remember in our classrooms). 

      I've designed the tasks to give teachers a "how-to" with the app as well as an "app-lication" of the app in a sample classroom project or assignment. It can be very challenging to train or coach teachers that are in very, very different places with their technology comfort and experience. With the app challenge, they have a guide to the app, can create at their own pace and extend their learning with more classroom ideas. In just an hour every teacher has created a classroom sample with an app that interested them! 

      Thanks again for the inspiration, Mr. Badura.

      Storehouse

      posted May 20, 2014, 2:31 PM by Adrienne DeWolfe   [ updated May 21, 2014, 3:39 PM ]

      The Storehouse app is a visual storytelling tool that can incorporate text, still images and video. Because Storehouse can also import images from your Dropbox or Instagram accounts, this is a great app for teens in middle and high school. I like to think of this app as Storykit for big kids. See my post here on Storykit. The image-driven layout makes any story come to life with ease. Students will have to create an account or use a shared classroom account. 

      Completed stories are published to the Storehouse site with a unique URL that updates anytime you edit the story. Students can email you the link to their final story. 


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