Friday, April 27, 2012

iPad Time: App List

Occasionally, I'll give my kids "iPad Time" meaning that they can use apps with little or no guidance. My rule used to be "no camera apps." More than half my sixth grade students have their own personal iPads with their own set of apps.  I got tired of them playing random game apps rather than something educational or using some sort of thinking skill.  So, I created this list of apps to use.  Is there something I'm missing?


If a teacher declares that you may use iPads during free time, here are the apps that are acceptable to use. 

·         7 Words      
·         Bible
·         Blockwick
·         BrainPOP
·         Bubble Ball
·         Calculator
·         Capitals (either one)
·         Coop Fractions
·         Doodle Fit
·         Doors
·         FactrSamurai
·         iCut
·         Jigsaw
·         Math Evolve
·         Minds of Math
·         Pearl Diver
·         Science VL
·         SketchbookX
·         Sliding Tiles
·         Tangram
·         WavePad
·         Word Jigsaw
·         WordsWorth

If you find a good app to put on this list, let a teacher know and we’ll make a decision. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Symphony of Color

We are currently reading The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster in my 5th grade Reading class.  One fun character in the book is Chroma who conducts the orchestra that brings color to the world.  With this in mind, we did this activity to celebrate A Symphony of Color.  The process is water wicking or capillary action.

After the kids left, I got out my iPad and TimeLapse app and made this video so you can see how it works.

Thanks for watching.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

My Daughter

It's not every day that I can copy and paste my personal blog over to my professional blog, but since it deals with technology in school, this still applies.  Keep in mind, my daughter (Ava) is three and just started preschool at the local public school a few weeks ago.

I love getting emails from Celeste about Ava during the day. The stories crack me up!  Today was a twofer.
In order to understand this one, you need some background information.  Ava loves electronics: cell phones, iPads, iPods, computers.  She knows she’s not allowed to touch them, so she sneaks touches in when she thinks it’s OK.  Her favorite move is the “Here you go, Daddy” move as she grabs my phone and hands it to me.  I got a new phone last night and left the old one on the coffee table for her.  It’s “her” phone now, even though it doesn’t work.  Here’s how today’s story goes…
Well, it took her a little while but she eventually found your phone, and in pure Ava fashion, brought it right to me.  I explained how it was hers now.  Well, she thought that was fantastic, especially after she realized it still turns on and makes noise and lets her type.  :-)   She had it in her pocket of her pants and then tried to put it in her backpack to take to school.  Uh-oh.  Gonna have to check that backpack.  We talked about “no toys” at school.  I convinced her to leave it on the coffee table for when she gets home.
What must her teacher think of us as parents if she’s sneaking a cell phone to school!  Reminds me of the day that a student’s phone rang in class.  She was shocked, as were all of us.  She looked at the caller ID.  ”Oh, it’s my mom.”
Today’s bonus story is just plain hilarious!
Ava:  (in a very loud, very excited voice while pointing out the car window on our way home from school)  “Mommy, look!  Look, Mommy!  Look!”
Mommy:  “What is it, Ava?”
Ava:  “I don’t know!”
I laughed out loud for quite awhile on that one and got an “OK, Mommy?” in response.  :-)
I love that kid!
Have a great day!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Helpful Web Sites

In my recent readings I found the following web sites/apps that you may find helpful for your subject area. Or, in my case, it could bring out your inner math nerd.  Enjoy!  I haven’t taken a ton of time to look at this one, but it appears that you can read up on the history of a region of the world (or continent) via maps of the regions.  Good for ancient history up to recent times.  It looks weak on South Korea though, which must be remedied.  They provide you with pictures.  You use the pictures as your illustrations for writing a story or poetry.  Good way to publish student writing and/or find some good reading for yourself.  Or, maybe a chance to do some critiquing with your kids. iPad app.  This one is fun.  They took a math history timeline and made it interactive.  Click on an item and you get a bit more information. There are also animations of some math concepts on the video section.  I’m not sure how to use this in a way that will motivate my 6th graders to learn, but I’m enjoying looking through things through the centuries.  Reminds me of the time I read Is God a Mathematician(  Good stuff!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

6 Word Memoirs

The other day, one of my colleagues led our 5th and 6th graders in a 6 word memoir lesson.  I had heard of the memoirs but had no real experience with them.  Each student was to write one memoir about a Bible character and one about themselves.  Here are mine:

Hezekiah: God, You can stop him.
Me: Know the truth and live it.

Here are some other neat ones from the students.

  • Jesus: I love you more than you imagine.
  • Noah: Slow animals like snails! Rain coming!
  • Female student: I don't deserve these blessings.
  • Noah: Leave the unicorns, they're too ugly.
  • Male student- Nice, friendly, curious, adventurous, nature, happy!
  • Male student- Family's pain, I help them through.
  • Female student - Happy, careless. Divorce changed life forever.
  • Noah: Shem, go get... ROAR! Never mind
  • Female student: Loves books, loves animals, love God
  • Adam: First man ever, lived in garden.
  • Male student: I want to go to UK.
  • Job: He suffered, believed, and was rewarded.
  • Female student: You carried me through this time.
  • Jesus: He lived, He died, He ascended
  • Female student: My Savior lives, He's Jesus Christ.
  • Female student: He died, I am now free.
  • Female student: Was afraid, but found His love.
  • Esther: Scared afraid, but ready to lead

What is your 6 word memoir?