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Showing posts from March, 2018

TextingStory App (FREE)

I recently got tagged in a funny Facebook post about a cat texting his owner. While the post made me laugh (I am a cat owner) I really liked the idea of showing texts back and forth in a non-traditional manner (i.e. cat and human owner). After a quick Google search I found the app TextingStories. It is free (there are some in app purchases if one wanted to upgrade but I did just fine with the free version).

I thought it could be used in a middle or high school class to show dialogue or understanding of the plot and characterization in a story. Here is my attempt at create a texting story between Romeo and Juliet:


It was pretty easy to use and the video of your text gets saved to your camera roll. My camera roll is linked to my Google Drive so I was able to easily transfer it to my laptop (students or teachers could also use a free wifi transfer app). My only complaint is that there isn't a Windows version of the app. It has to be used on an iOS device. 
The iOS limitation is why I…

Easter Sale and ELA Idea

I saw this cute Easter display at a school this week (the week before Easter). The Media Specialist was also running a ‘Reading with my Peeps’ challenge leading up to Good Friday. 
She started the challenge nine days prior. She and her awesome assistant pulled groups of nine books for each grade level (it is a small school with only two classrooms per grade level). They numbered the books and gave each classroom a basket with nine plastic Easter eggs. Inside each egg was a folded piece of paper with a number on it (1-9). The idea is that teachers would randomly let a student pull an egg and whatever number they got in the egg the teacher read the corresponding numbered book out loud to the class. They had the day before Good Friday to finish the challenge. Each class that completed it got marshmallow Peeps for the class (1 each).
I thought it was a fun idea. The intent was to encourage read aloud time with classes. 
While I saw it too late to really duplicate in a school I thought I …

Free for Educators - Flipgrid (math ideas)

Flipgrid is one of my new favorite tech tools for collecting responses from students. It allows the user to set up a question or topic that students then answer using video. Think of it as a video messaging board.

There is a free (limited) educators account but it has enough features that one can easily use it with students without having to upgrade to a paid account (for a step-by-step guide to setting up your account and creating your first topic you can flip through my Google Slideshow above or click directly on this link).

I've seen our teachers using it in a variety of different ways:
- Asking students an "exit" slip type question
- Asking students to record their response to a literary prompt.
- Having students respond to a prompt about how to keep schools safe (this was on the "walk out" day)
- One teacher had students draw political cartoons and hold them up to the camera and explain their drawing.

Flipgrid offers a variety of suggestions in their "…

Clever Billboard Idea (February and March)

I love this hallway display I ran across at one of our schools (to be honest it is the hair on Nina Simone). After looking at it several times I actually thought it was pretty clever. 
Here is a hallway display that can be left up for literally two months. It can be left up for February (which was when it was made) for Black History Month and then for March for Women's History Month. I might just change out the title of the board to keep it current. 
If you have friends (like I do) that dislike having to change out their bulletin board (not me...I like a good arts and crafts project) this one would be a perfect one to borrow for a month (or two).