This week I will simply share a few of the resources that have come across my email, twitter, and various pln groups. A couple tools that stood out this week, Pear Deck and using Google Slides to create various games for students. I've also been seeing lots of choice boards, and have included some for math. The lists of "stuff" are, as always, overwhelming.
Don't miss out on Netflix documentaries- now available in "your classroom"!
Here's the info:
"For many years, Netflix has allowed teachers to screen documentaries in their classrooms... However, this isn’t possible with schools closed. So at their request, we have made a selection of our documentary features and series available on ourYouTube channel. If you are a parent or teacher, please check the ratings so that you can make informed choices for your students and children. For more information and to download accompanying educational resources please visit the Netflix Company Blog."
One email that did attract my notice was from the UK, a weekly update on keeping kids safe online. I guess this should have been on my radar as we are asking kids to spend more time on screens, but there is a definite uptick in accounts of predators on the various sites that kids have been using more now for socializing. We are often asking kids to post video responses, but many kids, at least in the surveys I saw, are not supervised and are sharing personal videos online, talking with strangers, etc. The esafety advisor also shared links to ThinkUKnow activities for students. These are UK based, but applicable here as well.
Creating your own games? There are lots of ways to do this. Richard Byrne offers 3 ways, in addition to MIT App Inventor to create sorting and matching games in his recent blog post. I think my favorite is Educandy which has recently added a memory game template that you can use by providing a list of words or terms. Check out some of the other options he mentions in his blog as well.
Kasey Bell from Shake Up Learning demonstrated some great ideas for creating Drag and Drop Games in Google Slides. You can listen to thepodcast here, or watch the video below to learn how. The steps are also written out on her podcast/blog page.
New to Google Classroom?
The To-Do List
I wasn't going to include this one, but then realized that with everything else that you have going on , you may not know that it is there. Check out theshort blog post and share with your students if you are just starting out in Google Classroom.
Math Choice Boards
Living Maths has posted 2 versions of each grade band. Make sure you go to File>Make a Copy and DO NOT request access.
More K-5 Math Choice Boards
Laura Rogers K-5 Click here
Rob Baier from Pennsylvania made:Math Choice Boards K-8!
Here is the Crosswalk Document so you can see which CCSS standards these match up with: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1WMVie3DAhf71Wq5Km-HWKUeD9OMI7-qb/view
Problem of the Day
Illustrative Math https://tasks.illustrativemathematics.org/content-standards
Dr Paul Swan https://drpaulswan.com.au/teaching-at-home/
Manipulatives and More
I was used to using VM for virtual manipulatives, but have seen a lot of posts lately that mentioned Toy Theater. This is a treasure trove of manipulatives, games and so much more. Check it out.
If you need printables visit https://classplayground.com/category/math/
This is just a screenshot of some, not all, of the vitural manipulative available.
Two posts from amazing educators stood out for me this past week. One was about Daniel Pink's new book, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing; and the other was from Jessica Twomey and Christine Pinto's #Innovative Play- 2 great resources- Connected Play Centers and MLK Character Traits Study .
I actually saw images with Pink's "controversial" statements about the research on timing of math in school, not realizing that this was part of Pink's book, until Matt Miller tweeted about Pink's keynote at FETC. So, I haven't read the book yet. I ordered a hard copy (so I could lend it out after I read it), which should be arriving today. But I was intrigued by the research cited and have questions about it.
Here's Matt's sketchnote:
Images from Keynote attendees' posts
So, what subject comes first in the school day? Is the data only related to math or all subjects? What does later in the day mean... how subjective is this? And last but not least- breaks... How do you time all of this? How much control do teachers have/should teachers have over scheduling?
How ? The #Innovative Play Way
I have always found that early childhood and elementary teachers come up with the best ways to learn. The connection to play is so important. This week I saw two great resources, one on Connected Play Centers- embedding character traits, which connected so nicely with their presentation on MLK - Character Trait Study, using stories to make this important connection. I love the way these teachers think and their creative ideas. They also take so much of the work out of a project by including the links, the videos, but spark ideas that let you incorporate your own materials.
Check out the Connected Play Center's updated play board here:
Check out MLK Character Traits here:
Ideas to Share
I often get asked about using Google Read and Write for Chrome. It is a pretty amazing tool set, which is often underutilized. Texthelp continues to add more and more features. This, although helpful, can put folks off. I remember the first time I saw the Kurtzweil dashboard- pretty much made me walk away. Student and teacher time is precious. Things need to work with no fuss, and no one really has a lot of time for a steep learning curve. So- Check out the training Texthelp offers online. You can spend less than an hour and get a lot of the basic skills, or just watch a 3 minute video to help you figure out one tool. Remember- use the Chrome browser- log into your school account. Teachers get all the features free, students get a free trial, or if you get lucky, your district can get a great deal and include everyone. Here's the basic training link . Here's the Resources link. Scroll down and check this one out. There's a whole series of resource material for ELL students, including this handy PDF. Need a quick video to learn a tool? Check out their YouTube channel.
Edutopia has a nice article called, " Preparing Social Studies Students to Think Critically in the Modern World", which can give you ideas about using primary sources.
Check, Please! is geared for older students, but I think high school students or any teacher could pick up a few pointers. Here's their info: "In this course, we show you how to fact and source-check in five easy lessons, taking about 30 minutes apiece. The entire online curriculum is two and a half to three hours and is suitable homework for the first week of a college-level module on disinformation or online information literacy, or the first few weeks of a course if assigned with other discipline-focused homework."
To Share with Parents
The UK has a great organization called National Online Safety, which puts out a weekly post/pdf around various topics that parents, and teachers, should stay informed about. A recent one was on TikTok, but check out all of their free, downloadable resources here.