Monday, November 10, 2014

Stage Pro App Free Right Now!

One of our teachers shared this great app, Stage Pro . . . so I had to share with you all. It is too good to pass up!

Here is what she shared to with our school, "If you know me you know I LOVE a good app!  And boy is this a winner!  Stage Pro: Interactive Whiteboard is free for a limited time.  (There is always a free version, but everything in it is an in app purchase. This version includes everything for free!)  This app lets you draw on, type on, talk over, and record video.  It also includes backgrounds such as graph paper (can you say math lessons?!), world maps (hello geography!), live video, or a photo from your camera roll! It automatically saves to your camera roll.  It's really user friendly!  Give it a try while it's free!  You won't regret it!" ~Rachel 
(Follow her on Twitter . . . @Firstgrade104)

Basically, document camera meets interactive whiteboard!

Here is the snippet from iTunes . . .
Stage is an exciting teaching and demonstration tool that students and educators can use to share ideas and interact with curriculum. Use the iPad camera to display live video of objects, textbooks, student work, and other projects, and sketch, write, label, or laser point in real-time. With options like storing labels, recording, PDF import, and wireless connection to a projector via Airplay, Stage makes lessons fully interactive, collaborative, and engaging.

I'm excited to see how our teachers and students use it in the classroom!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Inspiring Students to Write Using Legos

This week I worked with one of our 4th grade ELA teachers.
Amy had written a grant for Lego StoryStarter kits. I was excited to be part of the planning and "kick-off" of the kits.

Lego StoryStarter kits are a hands-on tool to help inspire students to write. The kits are designed for grades 2nd - 5th.
The set consists of 1,144 carefully selected LEGO® elements, including assorted characters, animals, accessories, icons, basic bricks, building plates for creating up to five story scenes, and one extra building plate for building the StoryStarter spinner. The set also includes two element trays with separate compartments for sorting the elements into categories. 

With her class, Amy reviewed the importance of the setting while writing a story. 

There are so many parts to each kit, we felt it was important for the students to create norms for working with the kit. Setting the expectations for the kits is so important. Students needed to realize that working with these Legos is different from playing with Legos at home. Allowing the students to create the norms, set the tone for the Legos as a learning tool.

Students started off by putting together the setting spinner. These are used to help generate ideas for students. The various categories are time, category, mood and setting.
Once, their setting and time were established . . . the building began! Talk about engaged students excited to create and write!

Some finished settings!

Students then used this sheet to record the elements as well as start a rough draft of their story.

Follow Amy's class on Twitter to see their fun Lego StoryStarter writing adventure! Amy also hosted the Global Read Aloud slow chat  on Twitter  for the Fourteenth Goldfish! Very cool!

Stay tuned for more updates on using Legos to inspire writers!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

GRA - Slow Chat on Twitter

This week, my friend Amy and her class, will host The Fourteen Goldfish Global Read Aloud slow chat on Twitter.

A slow chat means that Amy's class (@teamwonder2014) will ask questions throughout the week and your class can answer them any time.  

The hashtag for the slow chat is #GRAGoldfish5.
The chapters for the week are chapters 21-25.

There is a hashtag for general 14th Goldfish tweets and that is #GRAGoldfish and then there is the #GRA14 for the whole event this year. There are over 300,000 students registered for this year's GRA.

I hope you will join Mrs. Soupiset's class for the slow chat. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Little Happy's for Halloween

I love Halloween! The crazy part is that I do not like dressing up! I do not like costumes . . .  but I like all the decorations that go with Halloween.

I think it might be the "treat" part of trick or treat. Maybe it's the colors . . .
Maybe,  it's the little treats that I like making for friends, and my daughter's teachers . . .

Busy day on Sunday. . .
I love that Halloween is on a Friday. Perfect time to get coworkers together for a bit of fun outside the work walls. Sent this out . . .

Then, my daughter and I made some "Monster Mash" for all 7 of her teachers!

Click on the picture to download a set of free tags for teachers or anyone!

Final product!

Then, I put together some smelly treats for my coworkers.

I found this cute idea from My Sister's Suitcase! I added the border . . . click on the image to download the tag.

Sometimes, it's just the little things to let people know they are appreciated.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

This is Epic! Free books!

Epic! is an iPad app that gives your students instant access to thousands of books. Teachers and librarians can create an educator account so they have access to all the books. A ton of my favorite books!

There are comic books, graphic novels, picture books, chapter books and even some really great nonfiction books. 

"With over 5,000 books available now and more than 300 new titles added each week, Epic! has been called the “Netflix of kids books” – it’s an unlimited library your kids can take anywhere!"

 They have numerous categories for finding books. 

Epic! offers a read aloud option on some of their books. You can download a book so the story can be read offline. (Downloading will take up space on your iPad.)

One last thing . . . A big thanks to Epic! Thanks for creating a fantastic free app that helps teachers promote literacy in their classroom.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

iTunes University

The last few days I have been at the Austin, TX Apple Campus. It is an amazing place! I wish I had pictures to share, but taking pictures is forbidden . . .

I was working with 150+  educators from across the state of Texas. We have been tasked with developing interactive, online content for learning standards. You might be familiar with iTunes University. In the past iTunes U has been mainly 6th grade through university courses. It is also a resource for just about any subject area and even teaching resources. (Download the app and take a look around!)

Here's a look at my library . . .

They are now adding K-5 courses for the core subject areas. Even though these lessons are aligned with Texas standards, anyone (not just Texas teachers) can use these them.

Here's a sneak peek! 

In each of these courses, teachers can find the integration of great apps, websites, videos for lessons.  The official roll out is set for January 2015. 

In the 2 days I was there, I met several great educators with so many wonderful teaching ideas and resources. We all go back to the Apple campus in November to finish up, but in the meantime . . . I can share some some of the great apps I learned about while collaborating with those fabulous Texas teachers!

Sorry, but it must wait until tomorrow. I've procrastinated enough! I need to write a paper on how our campus budget aligns to our campus improvement plan . . . sounds fun, doesn't it! (Gotta love grad school!)

Happy Saturday!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Wordless Videos & Inferencing

I love pictures and wordless picture books for working on inferencing skills.
Here are a few video for practice inferencing.

Notice body language and facial expressions. They tell a lot!

Do you have any other great videos for inferencing?