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Code Academy for Kids

22 Apr

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I absolutely love apps that teach basic programming skills to children! It’s such an important computer science skill that can be easily introduced at an early age. With Code Academy your students can work through basic coding exercises thanks to the straightforward activities within this app. Kids are sure to get hooked on coding once they can started moving from one task to another.  Whether you introduce this app as part of an elective or after school program or just suggest it to parents as an at home STEM extension, Code Academy is worth exploring!

Sphero Launches SPRK Program for Classrooms

9 Apr

 

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Have you heard of a Sphero? This interactive robot brings game play to life with a smart toy that rolls, spins and races based on moves programmed by the user.  Sphero is both iOS and Android friendly thanks to the dozens of apps that help users send instructions to this smart toy.  If you haven’t seen it in action, check out this video.  Teachers are finding ways to use this engaging robot in their classrooms with the help of Orbotix, the team behind Sphero.

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Orbotix created the SPRK program because they understand that connected toys like the Sphero can grab the attention of students and help them explore the world around them.  SPRK lessons teach kids the basic concepts of programming, robotics, and math.  There are five plug and play lessons available for teachers and parents to use with children.  They’ll help kids understand foundational STEM concepts while playing games.  Learn more about this smart toy and see how a Sphero can be used in your classroom!

 

Word Clouds for Predictions

7 Apr
Check out this word cloud for ClassTechTips.com

Check out this word cloud for ClassTechTips.com

I’ve shared some ways that word clouds can be used in the classroom, and here’s another activity that works for all ages and subject areas.  Find a website that you are planning on sharing with students.  This could be an informational text on a science topic or simply a current events article.  Copy and paste the website URL into the online tool Tagxedo.  This website will create a word cloud using text from that website.

Continue reading 

American History Interactive Timeline

28 Mar

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I’ve shared some of my favorite American History apps and here is another that’s worth checking out.  American History Interactive Timeline lets users swipe through a timeline of significant events in the history of the United States.  It has a combination of primary source documents and informational text that is placed across a timeline.  This app can help children understand the sequence of events in history and introduce them to some famous figures. The first two sections of the app are free and a paid upgrade is needed to unlock the rest.

Here are two Common Core aligned QR Scanner Scavenger hunts to use with mobile devices:

 

DK Readers for Nonfiction Text

21 Mar

imageThere are tons of options for iPad friendly eBooks (here’s a long list!) and if you’re looking for nonfiction text DK Readers has you covered.  Kids can scroll through each book, identify text features, and read along with the highlighted text.  This app comes with five free books and more can be downloaded with in app purchases.

Here are two Common Core aligned lesson plans for working with nonfiction text

This app is available for Android tablets.

Watch Science Videos on iPads

20 Mar

Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 12.06.46 PMUsing videos in the classroom is a great way to get students excited about a new lesson, build background knowledge and make them curious about the world around them.  I’ve shared a long list of apps for streaming videos and Science Channel is another great choice for accessing clips.  This app lets you view programs including Through the Wormhole, How It’s Made, and many more.

Here are a few lesson plans for teaching science with iPads!

70 FREE Apps to Teach the Common Core

13 Mar

It was great sharing some of my favorite apps at NJECC this week! They can  be used with students in whole class and small group activities aligned to the Common Core State Standards.  For video explanations of how to use apps in your classroom, check out my online course and special promo code or contact me to learn about onsite and virtual professional development.

To learn more about individual apps mentioned in this presentation, search for specific  posts using the box in the upper right hand corner of your screen or explore the archive using the drop down menu on the sidebar.

Check out my Common Core aligned lesson plans using these apps!