Friday, August 1, 2014

FREE App Friday! K-2 Reading Apps

ATTENTION K-2 teachers: Find your iPads immediately and download these three FREE apps to help supplement your READING time! I just tested these apps out and they are GREAT.

Life Science for 2nd grade has passages all about science topics! You can set up users and track their progress or just play as a guest.




 Reading Comprehension-Fiction for Kindergarten and 1st Grade has 20 stories about young children's daily life. It is set up just like Life Science and allows for your to add users and track their progress!




Inference Ace would be great for your higher level readers. I love how it will give an extra clue if an answer is not correct and allow the student to try again!





Thursday, July 31, 2014

Enter to win TpT $$ for Back to School Sale!


Back to School is just around the corner !  The BIG TPT sale is going to be this Monday and Tuesday (August 4th and 5th).  My entire TPT store will be 20% off plus you get an additional 10% off when you use the promo code.

Want some extra cash to spend during the sale??  Of course you do… simply enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a $10 TpT gift certificate AND $10 to my TpT store!  The drawing will end on Monday, August 4th at 11:59 pm!  I will e-mail the winner early Tuesday morning so that you can use it during the sale!

Classroom Architect Activity

It's time for Technology Thursday with...

With the beginning of the academic year approaching many of us are scrambling to find new, innovative activities to do with our kiddos to get them excited and keep them engaged! There is a really fun website I like to use in the beginning of the year and when teaching area and perimeter. The website Classroom Architect is incredibly fun and EASY to use for these lessons!

Have your students go to this website and create their "ideal" classroom. Here is what they will see:

Here is a sample of a classroom that has been constructed:


The only way to save is to save it to a cookie on your computer so I suggest having your students print straight from the site or take a screenshot of their creation. I usually have the students paste a screenshot into a word processing document and type a description of how and why they designed their classroom the way they did. You could even have them write in the voice of a teacher and pretend they are arranging their classroom for their future students. Who knows, you might get some good ideas for your classroom set up!

If you are interested in grading this activity, here is a rubric I like to use. Click the image to take you to the print out :)

Happy designing :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Tune Into Technology Linky: QR Codes




I am linking up this week with iTeach 1:1 and Learning to the Core to discuss...QR Codes! Why do teachers love QR Codes so much? Because they are FREE, FUN and ENGAGING. If you are unfamiliar with QR Codes, click {HERE} for a quick run down.

Being in four different schools on a weekly basis and working with a large amount of K-5 teachers I find that teachers like to use QR codes as a center since students can scan QR codes to:
-check work they have completed off of task cards
-listen to a story that is being read aloud
-watch a video on an academic topic
-take them to a specific website for research or an activity
-complete academic scavenger hunts

When students use QR codes for the first time they are enthralled.  It is pretty magical! But imagine what kids will do when they are taught HOW to MAKE a QR code. Put your kids to work and let them do the creating! My favorite QR code generator is QR Stuff. There are hundreds of sites out there but that one is always my go to. Some activities that I have done in the past in which students make their own QR Codes include:

-4th grade students recording themselves reading books for a 1st grade class' library (they just pasted the QR code inside of the book cover). We used Vocaroo to create these QR Codes
-2nd grade students writing a math problem and making a QR Code for the answer (the teacher turned around and used their work as a center..she didn't even have to create anything!)
-5th graders made iMovies, uploaded them to Vimeo, and made a QR code out of the link to take home for parents to scan and watch
-5th graders made a Back to School Scavenger Hunt for their parents by writing clues, attaching them to QR codes and pasting the QR codes around the room (this was a collaborative effort!)
-3rd graders made QR codes that linked to their Google Presentation about Ancient Rome and pasted their QR Code to a diorama (two part project!)
-2nd graders made nonfiction posters and used QR codes to label and give information about different parts of their model (kind of like a real life Thinglink!)

If you do a Google search or explore on Pinterest you will find a thousand other ideas!

I saw this ad for pop up business cards the other day on Pinterest and posted the following idea on my Techie Teacher Facebook Page:

So I thought about doing this as a book report project this fall. Have students create pop up characters that hold a QR code that contains info/recordings about the characters in their story. Check out Vocaroo.com for making QR Code recordings!

If you missed my QR Code Back to School freebie from a few weeks ago, be sure to click the image below:

Those of you who just want to stick to the basics with QR Codes, check out some my task card TpT products. For the next week I am going to offer you a DEAL. Buy 3 get one FREE! If you purchase 3 of the following products, just email me (jgsmith628@gmail.com) to let me know which QR code product you would like as your freebie and I will email it to you ASAP :) Just let me know what your TpT username is in your email. Click on the pictures below for more specifics. They are in no particular order...