Dear Elementary Staff, We are halfway there. The majority of the intermediate grades have be introduced to the MacBook Cart Guidelines. Now, we need to discuss how to integrate technology within the classroom effectively. Of course, there are interactive games students can play, but how can we do more? Can we have students create their own games rather than playing them? Let's facilitate creation and other higher-level cognition! Technology is a vehicle for delivering instruction. It cannot replace quality instruction. In other words, society still needs teachers to convey content; nevertheless, technology can be integrated within instruction and instructional tasks to convey content more powerfully. Start thinking about how to limit printing with students and increase the use of file sharing. Have students turn in assignments through email, Edmodo, Kidblog, Wiki, Google Docs, or other web-based tools. If you need suggestions or assistance with this, please book me to discuss the printing of student work. Rather than merely sharing student work with the hallway, share student work with the grade level, school, or world through the use of safe, online technologies. Online Resources: 1.
Technology in Education --This website provides teachers with several hundred online resources for the various instructional tasks students could perform on the computers. This is a substitution for merely using the MacBooks for students to review content with content related games. iPads in the Primary Classroom -- This guide an overview of various classroom apps that are separated by content area. I noticed some of the apps are outdated. For instance, the price or name may have changed. My suggestion is that you download and test the free apps first. ScootPad -- This is an online learning system, which I would like to test on a few students. I would like to evaluate this free programs effectiveness. With this program, students can be assigned instruction based on their specific needs. In addition, student progress can be monitored. Check out the introductory YouTube video to Scootpad. Scootpad can be used with the iPad or MacBook.
Online Dictionary/Thesaurus for Kids • • • • • • • • •
American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (via Yahoo kids) Merriam-Webster Word Central Wordsmyth - Dictionary and Thesaurus for Kids Thesaurus.com - Kid Synonyms Yourdictionary.com - Kids Dictionary Yourdictionary.com - Kids Thesaurus Fact Monster - Dictionary Reference Library from Yahoo Kids RhymeZone
Thank You Notes: I want to thank all of the grades 3-5 teachers for letting in your classrooms last week. It seemed like the majority of the students really took the MacBook Cart Guidelines seriously. Let's try to continually reinforce these procedures with the carts. If you need another copy of the cart guidelines, please let me know. I will make a finalized version of the these guidelines to laminate and leave with each cart. Before I finish rambling, I want to thank all the building techs for their hard work. They really did a phenomenal job of putting the carts together well. Additionally, they helped me wheel the carts down to the classrooms and present to the students. Without their assistance, I would have been struggling. Thank you again building techs! Teachers please be sure to thank John, Kyle, and Darlene whenever you see them. -- Dan Gibson p.s. The following image displays the first MacBook Air opening at the elementary level. All the students were so professional and excited.