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Monday, September 5, 2011

Illuminations: Activities

Illuminations: Activities
Check out this website for online interactive math activities. From the website:
The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics is a public voice of mathematics education, providing vision, leadership, and professional development to support teachers in ensuring mathematics learning of the highest quality for all students. With 100,000 members and 250 affiliates, NCTM is the world’s largest organization dedicated to improving math education in preK‑12.

Illuminations is designed to:

Illuminations is part of the prestigious Verizon Thinkfinity program.


I especially like the fraction models and Geoboards for making geometric shapes. You will find the math standards k-12 as well as lesson plans with activities. Check out the E-Examples from the NCTM website, too.
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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Kern CUE Technology Conference 2011



 Hope to see you there!!

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Friday, August 19, 2011

Way to Celebrate What We DO!

While looking through my PLN, I came upon a post by Wesley Fryer (Moving at the Speed of Creativity).  I just had to repost the YouTube Video.

Way to go O'Neill Nebraska Public Schools!  I have to say that I am partial to the song (one of my all-time faves) but the enthusiasm is contagious!
Watch...



Bravo to the staff!  I loved it! And thanks Wesley for sharing it first.
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Starting Your Own Professional Development (PLN)

Welcome back to another school year!  As I am getting things prepared for my students, I decided to pull out the list of blog ideas that I made over the summer.  One of the first things on my list was to encourage all my educator colleagues to start a PLN.

As you have been sitting through mandatory Professional Development, trying not to snooze (smile), think about having PD your way.  When you want, what you want to learn, and it's always there to refer back to, no obligation.

A PLN is a Personal(or Professional) Learning Network that you can use to collaborate with others in your field, your areas of interest, or the areas you'd like to grow.  One of the first ways I set up my PLN is with Twitter.

I created a Twitter account to use with my interests in Deaf Education and Educational Technology.  I have found many interesting people to follow and who follow me.  My Tweeps share links to great websites for use with my students or for my own use to be more productive.  We also share links to blogs that colleagues have written on current topics.  Some of these links may also lead you to Facebook where you can follow people or businesses.

     After you find a couple blogs that you'd like to continue to watch, you'll want to start using RSS feeds.  Many programs will offer free RSS readers:  Google, Yahoo etc.  Since I have had a My Yahoo page for years, I added RSS feeds right to My Yahoo.  I can see the headlines of blog entries and click on them to read the story.  One blog everyone should follow is Free Technology for Teachers.  If you look at the right side menu of my blog you will see a place where you can get the RSS feed for yourself.  Click on it.


If you are new to Twitter, it may take you a little bit to add people to follow but don't lose hope.  One connection leads to another.  Look at the how to videos to get some help.  Follow me on Twitter and you can also follow people from my list.  Look at the right side menu and click on the Follow Me link.

After you get a few friends and followers on Twitter you might find that you will benefit from a free service from Tweetdeck.com that you can download for your pc or smartphone.  It allows you to follow more than one topic at a time.  Check it out it helps you be more efficient and productive.  AND it allows you to better participate in chats about subjects that are important to your PLN.  That's where # s  come into play.  The # will allow you to follow others in a conversation about a topic.

There are some really great #chats to follow.... #edchat has topic chats on Tuesdays at noon and 7pm EST.  But there are also #edtech, #elemchat, #spedchat and other # chats in specific areas.  And don't be afraid to ask questions and get more information from others you meet on Twitter. Most people worth knowing will help you.  So don't be afraid, take the leap, and fly into some great information.

Next, I'll be adding a blog about paid sites to do Professional Development at your own time and pace. :-)

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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Common Core Curriculum Maps


Common Core Curriculum Maps (http://commoncore.org/free/ ) is a project funded by Melinda and Bill Gates to give teachers some resources, ideas, and activities to use to meet the K-12 Common Core State Standards.  The FREE maps were created by teachers and provide a great groundwork for teachers to plan activities and lessons that will cover their objectives thematically.  The maps list objectives that would most likely be covered, lesson ideas, fiction and non-fiction book resources, and cross-curricular ideas to get the most out of your teaching time. Educators can use these maps to plan out their curriculum timeline and create lesson plans.  It is not a curriculum in itself, but provides a fantastic map of resources to make planning easier.  The website says that they are in the process of revising the maps and will have a newer version soon. 
**NOTE - I received a comment letting me know the link was bad.  When I investigated I found that there is a new edition.  First edition is still free and 2nd edition is paid subscription.  I updated the link to take you to the free resources but please note the 2nd also.  8/13/11
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Friday, March 18, 2011

Exhibit Hall Finds @CUE 2011

COOL FINDS on Friday
I found a neat exhibit / website that helps you and your students collaborize.  It is called Collaborize Classroom.  (http://collaborizeclassroom.com/) You can sign up for FREE!  It has many great functions to use with your students and your lessons. (No, I am not getting any reimbursements from them)
From their website: 
Why Collaborize Classroom?
Collaborize Classroom is designed to complement classroom instruction and engage students in online activities, assignments and discussions that allow for deeper participation inside and outside the classroom.
•Do more with less. Allow your students to participate on their own time with an easy-to-use platform.

•Enrich your curriculum with multimedia. Embed Microsoft Office documents, videos, pictures, and PDFs.

•Give every student a voice. Teach students how to have productive, respectful and supportive discussions online.

•Publish discussions to a results page so students can see tangible outcomes of their conversations.

•Access detailed student participation reports that make grading easy!

•Download FREE lesson plans to help get you started.


  • The next cool thing is an Interactive White Board.... Star Board Link by Hitachi (http://www.hitachisolutions-us.com/starboard/tcea
  • make any hard surface interactive
  • can be mobile
  • $749
  • can buy a pad to walk around and write for an additional $250
  • ALLOWS FOR UP TO 3 USERS TO WRITE ON BOARD!!
  • hand movements to write, zoom in /out, scroll

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IQuest presents STEM resources

First session of the day gave me numerous online STEM RESOURCES. I have used the roller coaster interactivity at Funderstanding with my students before building Knex coasters and found it valuable. Go to http://www.funderstanding.com/coaster
Students can manipulate height, parts, speed, and record their findings on a spreadsheet. Another Physical Science interactivity is from PHET, called Moving Man. http://PHET.Colorado.edu/en/simulation/moving-man . Same principles of manipulation and recording of data. More soon!