Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Google Drive Snapshot Feature

I don't know where I have been living lately but one of my coworkers just showed me the other day the Snapshot Feature in Google Drive! you know about this? If so, just move onto the next blog on your roll :)

When your students create Google Docs or Google Presentations they can now add snapshots quickly and easily to their work! Follow these steps:

Go to INSERT and click on IMAGE:


The webcam will pop up and you need to click on ALLOW:

 Take your picture and click INSERT:

There it is!

Google surprises me every day:) We could do a fun Selfie project with Google now!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Grids Math

Grids Math is a website that sets your screen up as a big piece of grid paper with many cool tools to help you solve various math problems. I could see my students using this to solve multiplication/division problems with arrays, fractions, area and perimeter, distributive property, graphing, simple counting and so much more!

This website does not have an option to save your work mat but students could simply take a screenshot of their work and paste it into a doc to save or print!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Grading Technology Activities with Rubrics: Lots of FREEBIES!

Hold students accountable for their time spent on technology activities in your classroom with a simple rubric. Don't have time to create a rubric? Check out some of mine in my TpT store. Many of the following are FREE:









Make your own categories by typing in these editable rubrics using Powerpoint:


If you would rather print out rubric templates and write in your criteria, then this pack is for you:


Don't forget to enter the rafflecopter giveaway for a 3 month subscription to the Children's Book Read along app, Farfaria, and a $10 credit to my TpT store. You could purchase one of my newest products:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, August 15, 2014


The Children's Book Read Along app, FarFaria, reached out to me and gave me a 6 month subscription to try out and review their AWESOME app. I have to say, I am very impressed and obsessed! This children's app is available on the iPad and Android and is geared for children ages 2-9. It has over 750 picture books available and they add 5 new ones each week. That's 10x better than going to the library once a week! Check out the "home" page of this app...isn't it cute?!!

A mix of fiction and nonfiction books are available. I LOVE how the books are leveled and that the read along feature highlights the words that are being read aloud. 

This is actually a FREE app that you can download but the subscription comes with unlimited access to all of the books and features.

Here are more details from the app store:
- Unlimited reading! Curated library of 750+ popular children’s ebooks for kids ages 1-9
- Five new books added every week!
- Read-to-Me in EVERY story, with word highlighting to help young readers. 
- Exclusive reading-level badge on every book cover to build your child’s confidence.
- Offline access to Favorites keeps the kids reading everywhere you go.

How it works:
- Get Started for FREE! No subscription needed!
- Select one book per day for free from our 750+ library. 
- Receive five new books each week. 
- Subscribe for just $4.99/month to unlock unlimited access. 
- Subscription can extend to up to five connected iPhones and iPads.
- Payment will be charged to your iTunes Account at purchase confirmation.
- Your subscription will auto-renew monthly. Your credit card will be charged via your iTunes account. You can cancel at any time from your iTunes account settings.

Guess what?!! They also are giving one of my followers a FREE 3 month subscription! I am going to throw in a $10 credit to my TpT store. Just enter the Rafflecopter below...
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Math App Smash for a Variety of Learners

Happy Sunday everyone! I am gearing up for another B-U-S-Y week of presenting at conferences and trainings this upcoming week. Last week I got to play around with our county's new iPad image and stumbled upon some pretty cool apps that I am looking forward to using with students this year! I would like to share two of those FREE apps today that you can combine and turn into an app smash (when you use two+ apps for open-ended digital creations) The first FREE app is incredible: Schoolkit Math
Basically it is jam packed with digital math manipulatives.

I love open ended apps like this because they can accommodate a variety of learning levels. 

So how can you app smash with this? Assign your students some kind of math word problem that needs to be worked out with one of the tools that you see in the picture above. Have your students work out the problem step by step and take a screenshot (press the Home button and Power button at the SAME time) of their work board. Here is an example:

Now check out the FREE app: Shadow Puppet

Upload the screenshot from SchoolKit Math into this Shadow Puppet app. The app store describes Shadow Puppet as:

An app that creates custom videos that are easy to share! Combine photos and video clips with your voice and favorite song. Draw on screen, add emoji stickers, zoom and pan. Tell a story, explain an idea, or send a personalized message with Shadow Puppet. 

But check this out! When students tap the screen, the video will pick up their one to one correspondence:

Shadow Puppet from Julie on Vimeo.

For those students who want to make their presentation POP, they can add background music:

trim.7209AC26-460B-46B4-9344-C18486339517 from Julie on Vimeo.

I am going to be ALL over Shadow Puppet this year! I can't believe I have never used it before. For those of you who App Smash frequently, this app will let you upload/share your work in many different ways: Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Email, Message, Provides a link, and Saves to the Camera Roll. If you want to save your work to the Camera Roll then you have to first Save your work, go back to the Shadow Puppet Home, find your creation and open it, then tap on the small icon in the upper right hand corner. For some reason this app doesn't show the Camera Roll option at your last step.

I highly recommend you downloading these two apps this year!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Webcam Toy Chrome Extension

Today one of my coworkers shared with me a pretty neat Chrome extension called Webcam Toy. Our district just switched platforms and our new laptops do not currently have a webcam. I do SO much with kids and the camera in our lessons that I have been concerned about this issue. Thank goodness Chrome has come to the rescue!

Open Chrome and head to the app store and download Webcam Toy. It reminds me a lot of Apple's Photo Booth without the green screen effects. I will really miss being able to insert our own backgrounds but check out the different options (excuse all of these selfies):

SNOW: It is amazing how the snow will stick to your head or hands and then you can shake it off!





Here are a few more options for effects:

You get a lot of BANG without even having to spend a buck!

Once you take a picture you can save it to your computer or publish it to a social media site:

LOVE this app extension! How could you use this with your students? I would love to hear your ideas! Some ideas might include but are not limited to:

-teaching character traits/emotions with the Quad effect
-writing prompt visual (would make a cute bulletin board with student pictures!)
-selfie project: beginning of the year getting to know you activity
-use the book The Bad Case of Stripes and take pictures using the Rainbow effect for a writing activity
-teaching habitats using the ocean effect
-symmetry: left or right mirror effect or kaleidiscope effect
-make a Wanted poster
-long ago vs. today with vintage or black and white effect
-geometry: taking pictures with different 3D objects
-showing time on Judy clocks and then have each other name the time displayed in the picture

I'm sure I will dream of a hundred more ways to use this once I hit the sack. Please share your ideas by commenting below!