Thursday, July 24, 2014

Bulletin Board/Door Decor FREEBIE and the WINNER

First, congratulations to Christi Anna for winning my Facebook Fan Giveaway! Your $25.00 TpT gift certificate is on its way :)

This time of year was when I started thinking about how I would decorate my bulletin boards and classroom door. A few years ago the fire marshalls told teachers at my old school that we could not cover our doors entirely with paper so that really cut down on some pizazz and decorative color in the hallway. Karen Stamp told me the other day at our blogger meet up that she can't even put a single thing on the front of her door!  Therefore, consider yourself lucky if you can still hang a wreath :) ANYWAY...I always liked to have my door "slightly" decorated with the name/pictures of the students in my class. Even though I do not have my own classroom anymore, I envisioned what I would do this year and created it for YOU. Click on one of the pictures below to take you to this FREEBIE. Let me know if you end up using it! I would love to see some pics :)





Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tune Into Technology Linky: iPads

Transferring Files From iPads to Teacher Computer

I am linking up this week with iTeach 1:1 and Learning to the Core to discuss...iPADS! iPads are rapidly making their way into the elementary classroom, and if used correctly, can be a very effective instructional tool. My job as an ITRT is to show teachers how to use these devices to maximize student learning and creativity. I noticed that a lot of my teachers this past year were strictly using iPads as a center to practice skills using various game based apps. It was my goal to get into the classroom to demonstrate more open ended apps that could be used to differentiate a variety of learning levels. For example, instead of using an app to practice multiplication recall (which I am in no way knocking), we took it to the next level. We made multiplication practice more open ended by having students explain the concept of multiplication. This was done by creating a word problem and representing an array using stamps in Kidspiration and uploading their creation into Screenchomp to record and annotate the mathematical process. Kids LOVE creating and if you convince them that they are making something that will TEACH someone else their age, most of them will be up for the challenge and really get into it. My teachers were very excited about the new open ended apps I was showing their kids but their only concern was how to get their student work OFF of the iPad to display/show parents and other teachers. This is the topic of my blog post :)

There are many different ways to share iPad creations but today I am going to show you my favorite:
Drop It To Me. I do show my teachers how to use Google Drive and the Dropbox app but the younger grades LOVE Drop It To Me since it is so E-A-S-Y.

Step 1: If you do not already have a Dropbox account, register for a FREE one. Click here: Dropbox

Step 2: Register your Dropbox account with Drop It To Me. Be sure to pick a child friendly password and not a password you use for other accounts

Step 3: For easy management, bookmark your Drop It To Me website that you created (dropitto.me/yourusername) on all of your iPads

Here is a quick video tutorial I created to SHOW how this can be accomplished:


Dropittome from Julie on Vimeo.

I forgot to mention something in the video for those of you not familiar with Dropbox. There are two different ways you can access Dropbox from your computer. One, just go to Dropbox.com and login. The easier method is to install Dropbox on your computer. You will see in the video that when I went to my Dropbox account all I did was click on the little icon that was installed in the toolbar of my computer: All of my files popped up automatically! I think that is the quickest way :)
Techie Turtle Teacher

Monday, July 21, 2014

20% TpT Sale+Giveaway


I am having a 20% off sale on ALL PRODUCTS this week! Click the image above to take you to my TpT Store.

Also, be sure to enter my FACEBOOK $25 TpT Gift Card Giveaway:


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Super Science Interactive Website

Have you used the Lawrence Hall of Science website in your classroom or with your kids at home? I LOOOOOOOVE it for so many reasons. This website is jam packed full of interactive activities that will have your students/children outside exploring, making observations, forming hypotheses, comparing and contrasting, using both map and graphing skills and the list goes on. These activities would be an excellent extension for many topics in both math and science. For example, the Where Do Plants Grow? section has an activity that asks children to walk around their school or home and tally the kind of trees they come across (I like how they have to enter their zip code too!):

Once you enter your results, the map will show your location and what others observed in the same area.
If you click on a specific type of tree it will show you a count across the country. 


In the same section there are hundreds of resources available that will have your students/children investigating all sorts of topics related to plants.



There are even fun interactive activities linked in that really promote critical thinking and problem solving!

I love how this site prompts students to make hypotheses and shows what other kids around the world were thinking about the very same topic.

The Measure Yourself section of the site was interesting too. It asks you to measure certain parts of your body in centimeters and then compares the same parts of the body to that of different animals. This really helps put measurement into perspective for children.


Okay, one more! I really liked the How Old Is Your Penny activities that requires you to find a penny, locate the date that is was minted and enter your data. Children would be very excited to look at the graph and compare the dates that other children have entered. What a great real life experience!



Each section comes with hundreds of activities related to the topic of your choice.



Definitely check this site out if you haven't used it!


Since we are on the topic of science, check out my newest bundle all about The Scientific Method for grades 3-5:

Thursday, July 17, 2014

$25 TpT Giveaway and a FREEBIE!

Hello fabulous followers! Yesterday I had a BLAST meeting and having lunch with a great group of VA Bloggers:
Many of the VA bloggers ended up convincing me that I needed a Techie Teacher Facebook page. I have told myself that I wasn't going to start a FB page because that would be another digital source I would have to manage between personal email, work email, personal Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, TpT, Google + for both work and my personal account, Blogger, Word Press, and the list goes on...However, I DID it. This will be a quick way I can get ideas and resources out to Y-O-U. Therefore, I am giving a $25 TpT gift card away to one of my "Likers". All you have to do to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway below by LIKING my FB page. Woo hoo!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Also, be sure to grab my latest FREEBIE: Back to School QR Code Riddles.

I taught 2nd, 3rd and 5th grade and I ALWAYS had a special bulletin board dedicated to "Pondering Puzzles" every year. My students LOVED this board! I had a variety of "fun" riddles/problems for them to solve each day (math problem, inferring scenarios/riddles, and pundles. This really sparked curiosity and excitement since it didn't seem so "academic". When I started to add QR codes to the puzzles the students were WILD about making a guess and scanning the QR code to check their answer. Ohhhh, how the simplest things are so nice when you work with little ones :)

Friday, July 11, 2014

Digital Academic Scrapbook


Happy July everyone! Sorry I have been MIA for a few weeks...I was busy getting MARRIED. Ahhhh! I can't believe I am now going to blend in with millions of others. That's right, I am Mrs. SMITH. Yikes. But it sure is worth it :)

My hubby and I went to Greece on our honeymoon (OH...MY...GOSH...you have to go!) and I compiled all of our pictures into a Mixbook photobook to order. Mixbook is just like Shutterfly or Snapfish photo albums but I like it 10x better. I feel like it is easier to make "your own" and there are a lot more options. The best part about Mixbook is that the site provides you with a FREE link to your album that you can email out to your friends and family so they can view your album from their computer. It's great!

As I was making our honeymoon album it dawned on me that I haven't really blogged about how you can use Mixbook.com in your classroom. Last year I worked with a fourth grade class to create a digital scrapbook all about their plant unit. Here are two students' scrapbooks:

 
Mixbook - Create Beautiful Photo Books and Scrapbooks! | Start your own Photo Books | Create custom Christmas Cards


Mixbook - Create Beautiful Photo Books and Scrapbooks! | Start your own Photo Books | Create custom Christmas Cards

Isn't it neat that Mixbook provided me with an embed code to embed into my blog? You can have your students create a digital scrapbook on any topic and then post their work on your class blog or website for their parents to see (for F-R-E-E!) Parents can even go onto the website and order their child's scrapbook.

I know of teachers who use Mixbook throughout the school year to have their students create and add to their own scrapbook as different topics and units are introduced. By the end of the year their scrapbook serves as a good review of all of the material they learned.

Mixbook could easily be used with grades as low as 2nd and 3rd grade. If you happen to be a PreK, K or 1st grade teacher then consider using Mixbook as an end of the year scrapbook of pictures you could send out to parents digitally.

If you haven't used Mixbook before but are into making photo books then I would highly recommend this service! They constantly email out special deals and coupons..I got my honeymoon photo book for 50% off :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Summer Resources: One Stop Shop!

Are you teaching summer school this summer or have children of your own that you want to keep academically "fresh"? I stumbled upon this MindMeister map created by Toni Krasnic. It has over 50 different website links for students to practice a variety of skills as well as available resources for you to print out and use! Click on the picture below to take you to this awesome one stop shop site:

Personal Creations is trying to promote education throughout summer with the School All Summer project. A Pinterest board will be available soon!