Friday, December 21, 2012

Gingerbread Video Conference Fun!

I wanted to share our experiences with our new friends from Texas. Kindergarten and first grade classrooms participated in a collaborative gingerbread baby project with students all the way in Texas. We created a Connecticut gingerbread baby to share with students in Texas. We learned about our state and then we created directions on how to make our Connecticut gingerbread baby to send to Texas. We then received their directions. We learned all about Texas and we created a Texas gingerbread baby. After we finished our project we got to meet our friends in Texas. We went on a virtual field trip. We video conferenced with the classrooms in Texas that we were collaborating with. We learned so much about the state of Texas. We saw our new friends in real time and even got to speak to them. We got to see how our new friends dressed (some were wearing shorts), what their school day is like (their school day is longer than ours), what they do for fun (some students enjoy rodeos), information about Texas (state abbreviation is TX), and so much more. We really enjoyed traveling to Texas and making new friends! We can’t wait to make even more friends from different places.

Google Docs & Primary Pad

I have had many conversations with teachers about using Google Docs in the classroom. Teachers want to use Google Docs with their students, but it is difficult without student emails. There are ways around not having student emails. You can create a shared document using your Google account and then share the link with students. If you are having your students work in groups each group can have their own Google Doc.

Or you can use Primary Pad. Primary Pad is very similar to Google Docs. It was designed for schools so students and teachers could collaborate on the same documents in real time. You can upload files and export once you are done. If you choose to use Primary Pad make sure you export your documents when you are finished. Your pad will erase after 30 days unless you have a paid account.

Check out the tutorial below from the Primary Pad site.

If you are interested in using Google Docs or Primary Pad in your classroom please let me know and I would be happy to help you. If you are not using Google Docs yet and you would like to learn how please let me know.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Writers Speak to Kids

I just wanted to quickly share a resource I recently came across called "Writers Speak to Kids." This resource would have been very helpful for me when I was teaching 2nd grade. I have had students who struggled with writing because they didn't know what to write about. It was hard for me to share ideas with students without telling them what to write. "Writers Speak to Kids" is a free resource on NBC Learn's website that contains interviews from award winning authors. Seventeen authors share their experiences as writers. They discuss the writing process and give advice to all writers. The videos are very inspiring and could be just what your students may need to spark some ideas for their own writing.

Monday, December 17, 2012


Teachers have been adding links to websites to their classroom website for students to use at home. I just wanted to share with you a FREE and easy resource that you can use to share websites with your students. The resource is called Sqworl. You can create a Sqworl page for your classroom and then you can share the link to your page on your website. Sqworl shows a thumbnail image of websites that you add to your page. Students will be able to recognize familiar websites by the image that is shown. The image will take viewers right to the websites you add. This is a simple way to organize and compile all of the websites you use in your classroom. Your students would be able to use all of the websites at all times from any computer or device.

To use Sqworl just register for free and then simply add websites. Check out my collections below!
sqworl | Science
sqworl | Literacy
sqworl | Math
sqworl | Social Studies
sqworl | Speaking & Listening
sqworl | Internet Safety: Grades 3-5
sqworl | Search Engines for Kids

Here is a short tutorial from Sqworl to get you started. You would create groups for your classroom. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

QR Codes

QR Codes are EVERYWHERE! Why not use them in your classroom? During CLS's conference night I shared a QR Code Scavenger Hunt with parents and students. Each parent that visited left with two sheets of QR Codes. Each code took parents to an educational website they can use at home with their child. I promised parents that now that they have become familiar with QR Codes that they would see them everywhere. Students have been approaching me telling me about all of the QR Codes their families have seen and the benefits from scanning them. The students who attended have all downloaded QR Code readers on their devices and have been scanning away!

If you are at Bungay school you definitely know what a QR Code is. Check out these pictures below from Miss Iannucci's computer class.

Students saw how QR Codes are used today. Miss Iannucci had many hands on lessons where students explored the use of QR Codes. They even had to work in groups to find ways to use QR Codes at Bungay School.

 Students wrote book reviews on their library books and then created QR Codes that they taped to the books. I'm sure students will continue to write reviews on their own at home. Students can scan QR Codes on different library books to read reviews.

 Students in Miss Iannucci's class add to this chart to show where they have seen QR Codes. Students come in daily to add to the chart.

 Fifth grade students created an "All About Me QR Code Tree." They copied a posting from their student blog and then pasted it to a QR Code Generator. Students displayed their QR Codes on this tree in the hallway. The tree is a great way to have an interactive bulletin board to get everyone involved.

Students, teachers, parents, etc. can all learn about the class of 2020!

Miss Iannucci's class is now participating in a QR Code Scavenger Hunt. They have to scan different QR Codes to find the answers to different problems. The students really have been enjoying learning about QR Codes. Students find QR Codes to be engaging and they learned a way to showcase their digital projects to their school and community.

If you would like to use QR Codes in your classroom let me know and we can get started!