We suggest you visit TEACHERS pay TEACHERS, check out the talented teachers that contribute, and take a look at their lessons. We are sure you will find a wealth of resources, and who wouldn’t want to buy direct from a teacher and bypass the publishers.
To view the categories offered by TEACHERS pay TEACHERS, just click on the image below to enlarge it. Hopefully your day will be filled with sunshine much like our forecast. Take time to fill the rest of the day with things that make you happy…
“When it comes to organizing a work-space, relaxation and comfort aren’t the primary goals. Work is about efficiency and productivity. … The more neat and logically organized your work-space is, the better you will be at your job.” — Peter Walsh
Shannon and I have used Dropboxto store and share online contents for years. One of the things we love about it is how seamlessly it works on the iPad.
Dropbox, however, is blocked in some school districts. If that is the case in your district, you might consider another online storage site which is touted for its “bank-level” security.
On Wuala, (pronounced “Voilà”) your files are all encrypted, and nobody has access to your files or your password, not even their employees.
Like Dropbox, you receive 5GB of storage free, you can share your files, and you can synchronize your stored files between your computer and your online account.
“Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler.” ~~Albert Einstein
Last July I wrote about Google’s announcement to discontinue iGoogle on November 1, 2013. In that post, I described the “Chrome” alternative to bookmarks and web apps. I still love the “Chrome” features, but Chrome is not the only web browser I use.
My “go-to” home page is my Symbaloo page. I have been using Symbaloo since shortly after it was introduced. I was watching a YouTube video made by an Australian high school student describing how she used web tools in her Science projects. Over and over again she returned to a page filled with “tiles” as she used that page to link to her favorite web tools.
It is free. Of course. You need only to register for an account, and once you have logged on, you can begin building your personal “webmix” with tiles that link to your favorite websites. You can customize your own tiles, or you can choose from hundreds (and probably thousands) of pre-made tiles that are already available.
Every morning, I can instantly click on my three web email tiles to check my email, my “Fitness Pal” tile, Facebook and Twitter, the weather, Pandora, if I am ready to work with music, and browse through my favorite blogs. The best feature of Symbaloo is that it is web-based and my preferences are all stored “in the cloud”. I can find my page on any computer after logging into www.symbaloo.com
Symbaloo has just updated its site with a sidebar that makes browsing your “tile sets”, or “webmixes”, much easier. It is also a “social” site, and you can share your webmix, or search and add other webmixes to your collection.
As a teacher, a second Symbaloo account could be created with a webmix that includes those sites and tools that you use in your classroom. As the homepage, students could easily find links maximizing efficiency and time.
Symbaloo has added a second site just for teachers. www.symbalooedu.com offers training videos and additional resources for teachers. Some of the features are not free, but the videos are helpful.
So before you say “Goodbye” to iGoogle, get a jump on next year.
We encourage you to log on to Symbaloo and begin building your own personal webmix. As you find webmix sets, and new tiles, it is simple to add them. Soon you’ll have your own page, and we guarantee that you won’t want to wait until November to use it to replace iGoogle.
Enjoy your Sunday. We will officially begin the summer season of softball this afternoon with the first game. It looks like the weather will make it a perfect day for the first pitch.
and now we’re here to present yet another “wall” that is very useful for collaborating and sharing.
Stixy.com has even more options than what we’ve described in the other “walls”,
and we love the ease that it allows in sharing.
To quickly sum up your “Stixy Experience”, I’ll just quote from the “Welcome Email” I received after making a free account.
“Here are a few examples on how you may choose to use Stixy.
Keep track of your family’s schedule.
Collaborate and share in projects at work.
Gather online research; images, links, screenshots etc.
Organize an upcoming holiday with your friends.
Share photos from your last bike trip.
But it is really up to you as to how you want to use Stixy.”
Only you, your needs and imagination, set the limits.”
Once again, “FREE”. Yup. We love “free”.
I’ve created a “Stixy Wall” this morning, and we invite you to visit it and leave us a “note” in the form of a photo, a short “to-do list” of what you want to accomplish today, or even a note suggesting how you might use “Stixy” in your life.
While helping as a “Tech Volunteer” in one of our local school districts, the teachers sign up for a time slot, and I show up.
Their requests vary from SMARTBoard support to loading CD games onto their computers.
The biggest surprise was how many teachers wanted a desktop shortcut for a site, such as their district web-mail. Sometimes we just don’t know what our teachers don’t know.
It occurred to me that this should be a tip, and a way for many to save time and steps. They have many of their management sites linked from their school website, but a shortcut icon saves them time that they would have to spend going through links or their “favorites” to get to those sites.
So, below is a video to help you with that process.
We hope your year has begun on a positive note, and that your weekend has given you some time to stop, look, listen, and if you have any time at all,
Beth Breiner has put together four videos that outline the features of Linoit, and uploaded them to YouTube. She does an excellent job of describing the features, and how this tool can be used in your classroom.
Take a look at the features and uses of Linoit, and this might launch some ideas and ways you might want to collaborate in your classroom.
Next week I’ll talk about “Wallwisher”, its features, and how it differs from Linoit.
Have a great Sunday and a great week, and be sure to make some memories.
My “anchor” was thrown over the side of my little “retirement boat” when I agreed to finish the year for a very special friend who discovered that she was expecting her first baby.
Teaching the last five weeks of the school year in what was my own classroom,
in my own school,
teaching the same curriculum,
(Well, sort of…)
seemed very doable.
Until the doctors decided that bed-rest was required for the expectant mother.
The five weeks turned into eleven, as in a full quarter, of what is the most beautiful spring I can ever remember.
The hardest part of this teaching assignment has been working without the technology that I had in place,
and the connections that I had built with parents that were used to support and enable student achievement.
Last Thursday, my dear friend was scheduled to deliver her new baby boy.
All day we checked our text messages, Facebook updates, and emails.
Finally on Friday, we received pictures and a text announcing the arrival of a beautiful red-haired 8 pounds 5 ounces baby boy. His mother had to have an emergency C-section, but good news prevailed with Lucas Kyle’s arrival and the news that everyone was healthy and happy.
It was checking my texts that made me think about a student that I had last year.
His mother would not answer phone calls from “unlisted” numbers, which is how our school number appeared to the Caller ID.
One day, Alex suggested that I “text” her.
“That is the only way my dad can get her.”
As reluctant as I was to text a parent from my personal cell, I felt it was worth it.
I can honestly say that the impact texting Alex’s mother had on his success in my classroom was amazing.
So, finally, I present this “tip” for my morning “Sunday Sit, Sip, and Sync” post.
Kikutext is one site that would be on the top of my list for implementation in my classroom.
For years I had emailed parents daily, and it was one way that enabled communication and connection that helped foster student achievement and growth.
Email, however, is no longer the only option, nor is it the best use of technology in terms of communicating.
Both Shannon and I check our email on our phones,
and a text will be answered much sooner than an email or a “call-back” from a message left on our voice-mails.
Just this Friday an important note went home from the nurse’s office,
and if I had Kikutext set up and running, I could have sent a text to parents notifying them to expect the note before their students got on the bus.
Students, in turn, would know and expect that they would be responsible for delivering the note, and expectations for student accountability would be raised and reached.