Monday, May 20th, 2013



Study Jams is a resource provided by Scholastic that covers a multitude of elementary mathematics and science topics. It has a variety of resources that consist of videos, interactive activities, and karaoke. I would highly recommend it as a resource for introducing or reviewing topics as it focuses heavily on key vocabulary for each skill.

Here is the drawback, it is built on flash. What does that mean? It will not work on iOS devices. So the solution for the elementary teachers I work with would be to just use it in a whole class setting or use it in the computer lab. You could also use some of the songs and videos as a transitional period between subjects. A great way to make this happen would be to create your own Symbaloo page. Zack gives some fine directions on making your own Symbaloo page here. By making your own Symbaloo page, you can link specific examples all on one website because you may not want to use all the resources listed. This would allow you to quickly pull up the specific resource you want.

Check out Study Jams. I think you will be pleased with amount of quality resources that are there.

via StudyJams.


Geometric Solids Using Pic Collage

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Knight-Time Technology

As a former fourth grade teacher, one of the typical activities I would do every year when talking about geometric solids is have the kids do a scavenger hunt to find examples throughout the room so that they can connect the concept to their world. I would have them jot the objects down on a paper as they found them under each three-dimensional shape category. The students always found it fun and engaging to go on the scavenger hunt because who doesn’t like the opportunity to get up and roam around the classroom in order to complete a task in elementary school?

Mrs. Caylor of Avilla Elementary utilized Pic Collage for the same purpose. She had the students use pic collage to snap pictures and label them accordingly. This is an enhancement to the previous method. I can’t imagine how long it would have taken them to complete the same…

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Me by Numbers – Skitch

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

Knight-Time Technology

“Me by Numbers” is an activity developed by Mrs. Yoder that she performed with her first grade students. In studying measurements and how they are a relevant to our everyday lives, she utilized the Skitch application on her class set of iPods as a means to produce a recording of the students’ work. The students had a partner take a picture, and then they proceeded by finding their weight, date of birth, height, etc.

Skitch is a great app for both iOS and Android devices. It is a simple app that gives students an easy way to demonstrate their knowledge about any subject. Imagine how long it would have taken you as a teacher to take pictures of every kid, print them off, and have students hand write these tidbits of information about the subject?

I recall doing activities like this prior to going 1:1 when I taught fourth grade…

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QR Codes and Counting to 20

Friday, March 15th, 2013

I cannot take credit for this discovery. My wife actually sent me the link, but here is a QR activity for counting to twenty. One has a St. Patrick’s Day theme while there is also one for anytime of the year.

Students count the number of shamrocks on a page, and check their answer through using a QR code Scanner. The teacher even supplies the directions on how she went about setting up her lesson. Isn’t it terribly nice when people share their good stuff on the internet? Thanks Mrs. Nelson!

If you are not certain what a QR code is, download this app and use it to scan the code in the picture below.

Enjoy your St. Patrick’s Day!


Math Games Math Vs Zombies

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

Math Games Math Vs Zombies by Tap To Learn for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store.

Math Vs. Zombies has received a change of face. I know when I recommended this app in the past for math facts practice, the biggest criticism was that the students were using a gun (laser canon of some sort) to kill zombies.

The change that took place now has the student use magical powers shooting from hands to change the zombies back into humans. So if you had reservations in the past about this application, please take some time to look at it again as they have obviously made some efforts to appease the masses.

via Math Games Math Vs Zombies.

Measure Time and Length

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

Measure Time and Length is not a typical app I would spend a lot of time reviewing. (No offense to the developers.) I tend to focus more on applications that can meet a wide range of skills and cause the students to develop their creativity as well. However, with the pressures of standardized testing, this application could be necessary for all classrooms.

East Noble School Corporation recently underwent a “stress test” to check the ability of our network and devices to handle standardized testing. To make this test happen, a practice test took place. The practice test required use of virtual mathematics tools. This application supplies a similar tool that will allow students to become accustomed to using a virtual ruler vs. the cardboard eight inch ruler they used to supply on the paper and pencil version.

With that said, the app is simple and basic, and without a doubt will provide students with the familiarity of using virtual tools on an iPad for testing.

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Sell Lemonade

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

Sell Lemonade for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad on the iTunes App Store.

When I taught fourth grade, I did an entire math unit on Coffee Shop from Students had to figure out how much it cost them per cup based upon the recipe they set for their coffee shop.  They would determine what price they could set based upon the recipe to maximize their profits. They had to also consider factors such as the weather. The kids really enjoyed this activity, and for many of them it really stretched their thinking to crunch the numbers rather than just play the game itself.

Setting a specific purpose for a game is powerful. Yes, the students could have very well played the game just for entertainment value. However, that would defeat the purpose of school now wouldn’t it? I’m all for teaching the students to use these devices as tools instead of toys. I’m sure if you implement this sort of activity, you will have some students just want to play the game. Make it the reward for their achievement. Create a competition. Have the students use these critical thinking skills to figure out how to maximize their profits. There are lots of ways you can promote the activity to produce great results from your students.

Now, this whole time I have been focusing on the Coffee Shop from Cool Math. (I only used the coffee shop over the lemonade stand on Cool Math because the graphics were better.) I bring before you alternative for the iPod and iPad that uses a lemonade stand as the platform. 

This activity could also fall under Social Studies as it would meet multiple levels of elementary economics standards.

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013 is an easy-to-use infographic builder. Students can take data that they have collected, put it into an excel sheet, and upload it to their very own infographic. “What is an infographic,” you ask? Click here to see an infographic on the definition of an infographic. (I know, it is confusing.)

Students will need to create accounts. Please also keep in mind that students under the age of 13 will need parent permission to participate. So if you want to use it, please send a permission form home so that your class can use it with utmost integrity.

I apologize for the length of video. I try to keep my videos under five minutes. However, I spent some time looking over the privacy policy to show where it discusses how students under the age of 13 can use the service. Ultimately, the best way to learn how to use it is to just try it yourself. If technology does not come naturally to you, the nine-minute video may actually save you some time.

Lastly, I have tried this on an iPad. Since it is still in beta, the functionality is somewhat limited. Try it for yourself on a tablet, but I think you will find some of the limitations frustrating. Hopefully they will work out the bugs in the near future. However, it is a step in the right direction for mobile devices like the iPad for a web-based service.

Oh No Fractions – YouTube

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

via Oh No Fractions – YouTube.

Oh No Fractions provides students with practice determining the equivalencies between fractions. Students decide which fractions are greater than or less than. After they decide, the students can prove it using virtual fraction bars.

Students can also change the maximum denominators to provide a greater challenge to students that have developed a better sense of fractional concepts.

This application is available on iPod Touch and iPad.

via Oh No Fractions – YouTube.

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Knight-Time Technology

One of my favorite parts of being a technology peer coach is when I get to go into exploration mode and look for apps/websites that could be useful for teachers. In the last few weeks, I’ve done a little digging and have found a few apps that might just meet your needs. A lot of them are just “skill and drill” apps, but they are pretty good quality as far as the fun factor goes. By the way, all of these apps are for iPod and iPad.

Sock Puppets:

You get 30 seconds to record your voice and move a sock puppet around. It then changes your voice according to which sock puppet you have chosen. I think this could be a lot of fun for students to record book recommendations, reenact a favorite scene, make a prediction, talk about cause and effect…you get the idea. The only drawback is…

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