Thursday, December 29, 2016

Storybird {Story Creation}

Storybird is a different way of having students participate in creative writing. They offer three different types of stories that you can create -- picture books, regular books and visual poetry. 


As a teacher, you can create an assignment that students have to turn into you, or you can allow students to pick any picture of their choosing and have them send you their project when they are done.
I've used this as a creative writing prompt for bellwork in my classroom, and have also shared it with the art teacher who uses it often to incorporate writing in her classroom.

Try it out & let me know what you think,
Mrs. Tech

*If you are more of a visual learner, check out my "how to" video on using Storybird, as well as some way to use it in the classroom.

**If you want to have your students try out Storybird, download this tool that walks them through step by step directions on how to create their first story.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Music Mixer {Music Creation}

Music Mixer is a website sponsored by National Geographic Kids that allows students to create music in a studio setting. Students become the "producer" and they are allowed to name their band, pick their band members, and then create their own mix of the instruments that they want while tuning the sounds and volumes of each instrument. Once the song is created the way they want, they can add it to a playlist and make another or play it back for their classmates.



This is another way to bring out student creativity as a bonus project for early finishers, a reward for students with special needs who like music or as an activity for a music class!

Try it out & let me know how you like it,
Mrs. Tech

*If you are more of a visual learner, check out my "how to" video on using Music Master, as well as some way to use it in the classroom.

**Grab this handout for students to use to learn about Music Mixer.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

City Creator {Architecture Planning}

City Creator is a great early finisher activity for the architects in your classroom. Think of this website as real life Lego building! Students can pick what kind of town they want to build, and then add buildings from the ground up. City Creator has a very simple user interface so students of all ages will be able to easily navigate the site and successfully create a city.

Did y'all ever play roller coaster typhoon growing up? That game where you would design your own theme park and then people would come visit and you would make money to expand and such? That is what this makes me think of - embracing the creativity that it takes to design and create an entire city.

Try it out & let me know what you think,
Mrs. Tech

*If you are more of a visual learner, check out my "how to" video on using City Creator, as well as some way to use it in the classroom.

**If you want to have your students try out City Creator, download this tool that walks them through step by step directions on how to create their first avatar.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Build Your Wild Self {Animal Adaptations}

Build Your Wild Self was a site that I just stumbled upon, but was probably one of my students favorite activities that we did all year. Basically, students are able to create themselves by playing with their body, hair, eyes, mouth, clothes. They can then make themselves "wild" by adding headgear, ears, face, arms, bottoms, backsides, and tails that are all body parts of wild animals.

This activity isn't all fun though - there is educational value too! Once the students are done creating their "wild self" they will click I'M DONE. This will take them to the next page where it will explain to the students what is "wild" about them. It will tell them where their wild parts came from and why those parts are important to the survival of that particular animal.

So there you have it - educational and a ton of fun! Just wait to see what kind of creatures your students come up with! It will be entertaining, I guarantee you that much.

Try it out & let me know what you think,
Mrs. Tech

*If you are more of a visual learner, check out my "how to" video on using Build Your Wild Self, as well as some way to use it in the classroom.

**If you want to have your students try out Build Your Wild Self, download this tool that walks them through step by step directions on how to create their first avatar.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Voki {Avatar Creator}

Avatar creation is kind of a big deal right now. Voki is a great tool for students to learn about animation through creating their own character on Voki. They will show how they can use technology to communicate with others. Next time your students need to present about a person or animal, have them use Voki to give their presentation. They'll love it - I guarantee it! 


Directions:

  1. Go to voki.com and click on TRY IT – It’s Free!
  2. An avatar will automatically be chosen for you. Choose a new one under customize your character
  3. Customize It – choose an outfit/accessories. You can also customize at the bottom where it gives you the choice to change hair, eyes, skin and mouth color or tweak the size of the characters mouth, nose, and body (height and width)
  4. Add a Voice – using the “T” key, type in a box what you want your character to say. Then press the play (triangle) button when you have finished typing. You can also change the voice and accent under the text box.
  5. Choose a Background – make sure you use the side arrows to explore all of the options.
  6. Publish & Share – Name your project, then click on “No Thanks, continue as guest.” 
Try it out & let me know what you think,
Mrs. Tech


*If you are more of a visual learner, check out my "how to" video on using Voki, as well as some way to use it in the classroom.

**If you want to have your students try out Voki, download this tool that walks them through step by step directions on how to create their first avatar.

Monday, December 12, 2016

#8daysofchristmas

Hey y'all!

We are so close to the holiday break and I have joined with a group of sellers to offer you #8daysofchristmas - 8 days of $1 deals. Be sure to check on TPT every day from December 12-19, as every day there will be different amazing products on sale for only $1. Just search #8daysofchristmas each day to find these deals. I will be offering the following products for $1:
Dec 19 - Computerless Tech Activities



Don't miss your opportunity to purchase these great items at a discounted price!


Mrs. Tech

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Santa's Village

Ever have those days when you see something and feel the urge to use it immediately? Well I had that happen to me this morning. My internet pulls up Google whenever I want a new webpage, and today I saw something I hadn't noticed before. See that little link that says, "Skydive with Santa and boogie with elves"? Well click there!
When you open it up, it looks just like Santa's Village. And check out that countdown until Christmas - that makes it automatically perfection. There are new activities added throughout the countdown to Christmas, but the activities that are there are already fabulous. 

Here are some of the activities that are included on Santa Tracker {and they are adding new ones every day!}:










Educators: You can find all of the games that will be available here AND you can find lesson plans at the bottom of the same link (pictured below). 

Have fun & enjoy these Christmas activities,
Mrs. Tech 

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

12 Days of TECH TOOLS Christmas {Online Tools Flash Freebies}

I love Christmas & I love giving. In the spirit of giving, I am sharing some of my favorite tech tool websites as TPT flash freebies. These lessons are designed for the tech lab and are written for students to learn how to use these tools. You can also download them to learn how to use the tool yourself, and then integrate these tools with lesson that fit your classroom. There will be 12 of them {one for each 'day of Christmas'}. Each flash freebie will be downloaded from my TPT store and will only be available for 24 hours. All I ask is that if you use it in your classroom and love it, holler back at me and leave feedback on my TPT store or comment on this post so I can see how you liked it :)

The 12 Days of Tech Tools Christmas are as follows:

You can get the always free tech tool (Voki), which is one of my absolute favorite tech tools to use. 

Merry Christmas!
Mrs. Tech

Monday, November 28, 2016

Christmas Online Resources

It's that time of year again! I love Christmas and wanted to share with you some of my favorite online Christmas activities that my students enjoy each year! These are all kid-friendly websites and most of them are free of any ads. Some are educational and others are just fun for early finishers or Christmas parties!

Did I miss any? Let me know in the comments below!

Ho Ho Ho!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Christmas is here {well almost} linky party

Christmas is almost here! I wanted to share with you some of my new Christmas resources and let some of my fellow TPTers share with you their best products. See them linked up below.







Thursday, November 24, 2016

THE BEST Websites to teach code K-12

Computer Science is growing more and more popular and there is a great push for it in schools. You can read more about President Obama's push for Computer Science For All here. That being said, here are some of my favorite tools to get students involved in Computer Science through coding.

This is one of my favorite videos to show that coding is really a skill that EVERYONE should know! Show this before you code if your students {or yourself} are hesitant about coding.



Elementary
Code.org - code with drag and drop coding; elementary age activities that are easy for students to complete (Star Wars, Minecraft, Frozen, Angry Birds, or Flappy Bird)
**There are also great unplugged lessons to introduce code to younger students without the use of computers or if you don't have computers in your classroom

Scratch - drag and drop blocks and sprite creation (create your name, or operate a "sprite")


Middle School -
Code Combat - Learn how to code through gaming and web/game development

Scratch - see above :)

Code.org - For MS students, there are 20 hour long courses that start with drag and drop blocks and end with students creating their own codes from scratch.

High School -
Code HS offers a variety of different coding courses (pictured below) with the opportunity for students to move past drag and drop coding and into text based coding. There are both Java and Python options. There are checkpoint quizzes for you to see how students are doing, and as a teacher you can see the solutions and give feedback for each problem.


Here's to finding a way to involve Computer Science in your classrooms,
Mrs. Tech

Monday, November 21, 2016

Thanksgiving Writing Prompts

One of my favorite parts of teaching when I was in the classroom full time was always creative writing. There are so many activities that we do that have RIGHT and WRONG answers, that I loved the fact that creative writing allowed students to express themselves in any way they felt appropriate.

Now that I am in my tech classroom, I don't have as many opportunities to do this, but I do enjoy a good writing assignment every once and a while. I just have them type it and turn it in instead of handwriting it {That makes it tech class appropriate, right?}

Anyways, here are some of my favorite prompts with a Thanksgiving Focus {the students loved them too}. Grab them in my TPT store for free! 

Happy Thanksgiving,
Mrs. Tech






Friday, November 18, 2016

Thanksgiving FREEBIES

I am just sitting here this morning in my classroom reflecting on how thankful I am for all that I am blessed with --
  • An amazing husband (of almost 10 months)
  • The sweetest pup (my first dog EVER that we rescued in July)
  • A gorgeous first home
  • A job with the best kids
  • and most recently, my TPT community
And this is just the tip of the iceberg, but I'm not going to bore you with my long list of thanks. Instead, I want to show you how appreciative I am for you and your support on this new journey I embarked on in the middle of September. 

Check the links below to find some freebies in my TPT store. They are great quick activities to use in your classroom. Also, download my FREE Math Task Cards (2 digit addition without regrouping) - special for my blow followers! Enjoy!

Happy Thanksgiving,
Mrs. Tech

Math Task Cards (2 digit addition without regrouping)