Wednesday, August 30, 2017

ClassDojo Toolkit

I wanted to give a quick shout out to ClassDojo!
They have added the coolest tools to make life easier! 

The Toolkit is a PERFECT 10! 

I hope you enjoy the ClassDojo 
Toolkit as much as I am!!!! 

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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Eureka Math- FREE ONLINE Resource 2 Add 2 Your Teacher Toolbox

I am constantly searching for resources to add to my Teacher Toolbox! 
 So when USEVS superintendent, Laurie Vent, shared Eureka Math, I was very excited to investigate. 

Quick Facts: 
1. Eureka Math was written by teachers and mathematicians

2. Eureka Math is the most widely used math curriculum in the United States. 

2. Eureka Math has been tested and proven to be the most successful method in the world
It’s not enough for students to know the process for solving a problem; they need to understand why that process works. Teaching mathematics as a "story," Eureka Math builds students’ knowledge logically and thoroughly to help them achieve deep understanding. While this approach is unfamiliar to those of us who grew up memorizing mathematical facts and formulas, it has been tested and proven to be the most successful method in the world.

3. Eureka Math was developed specifically to meet the new standards and is the only comprehensive curriculum fully aligned with the standards for grades K-8, according to the

What is Eureka Math? 
Eureka Math -is a complete, PreK through 12 curriculum that carefully sequences the mathematical progressions 
into expertly crafted modules.  
There are 8 modules in Grade 2.

Each module contains FREE ONLINE materials!

1. Online Teacher Edition-135 Pages

If you are overwhelmed with the online Teacher Edition or the teaching instructional methods subscribe to Duane Habecker's YouTube Channel! He made Eureka Math videos for all grade levels to make math accessible to all of his students!  

Duane Habecker 

2. Classwork
 3. Templates

4. Exit Tickets
I use My Math Exit Slips, but I am very excited to use Eureka Math Exit Tickets this upcoming year. 

5. Sprint and Fluency Practice Sheets

6. Homework
7. Mid and End of Module Assessment Tasks

Our school district adopted McGraw-Hill
 My Math . We also use Ready Mathematics to supplement our math instruction. 
 Eureka Math 
will be a great addition to 
my Teacher Toolbox this year! 
I encourage you to
Sign Up for FREE & investigate today!

Do you use Eureka Math? 
If so, what do you like best? 
Do you have data to share that it is working? 
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Sunday, June 25, 2017

Coding Clubs Courtesy of Google

Google has launched an exciting new way for students to explore computer coding by tapping into their individual interests.  If you are looking for a new way to introduce or build on an existing coding program, you should really venture over to the Google CS First website.  
Google CS-First Coding clubs are interest based: animation, art, fashion & design, friends, game design, music & sound, social media, sports, and storytelling.

Three things caught my attention right away:

  • Google CS First uses Scratch programming.  (My students were already familiar with this. Perfect!)
  • The materials are FREE and kid friendly!  What kid doesn't like the idea of having a "Passport" where they receive badges (stickers) for every completed activity?
  • The materials include a teacher guide with step by step, illustrated directions! What teacher doesn't want the security of a teacher guide to pave the way through unfamiliar territory?
Starting a club is simple.  Create a teacher login and follow the step by step startup guide.  It will look something like this.

Helpful Hints: 
  • When students sign up, you will need to provide the join code for the specific club (ie: Art coding club) and you will need to write down their login information on the roster.  

  • You can also update the login information online (using the Student Stats tab) so that you will be able to track student progress by their name rather than their login.  This works best from a computer rather than a tablet.  I noticed that sometimes when I updated the names, they did not "stick" when using my tablet. 
Your club Student Stats screen will look something like this.  The stars indicate completed activities and the checkmarks show activities that are in progress.

  • Allow students to choose the club that they want to join to increase interest.

Reality Check:

Some students will struggle and need help.  Other students will excel and want to complete every club.  Allowing students to support each other and share ideas encourages collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking.  

Have you introduced computer coding in your classroom?  I would love to hear what programs and/or tools you have found useful.

Have you used Google CS-First? If you have other tips to share, please post them in the comments.

Questions? Share those too.
the TechedOutTeacher

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Friday, April 14, 2017

iPads and Chromebooks Under the Sea

 On April 22, 2016, a dream came true! I traveled to Atlanta, Georgia, to visit the highly acclaimed Ron Clark Academy, a nonprofit middle school that promotes innovation in the classroom. It was the most rewarding professional development of my teaching career.  I was able to observe Ron Clark and his fantastic teaching staff use different techniques to increase their students’ engagement, to promote academic rigor and to create a climate of success.

My Flexible Seating Ron Clark Inspired Blog Post

Ron Clark

Kim Bearden and Hope King
I have tried very hard over the last 21 years to implement many different research-based ways to make my classroom environment conducive to 
open collaboration, 
creativity and critical thinking. 

Kim Bearden, Co Founder of the Ron Clark 
Academy suggested in her book:

"We live in a world that is full of magic, and we all have the ability to create it. We all need a little magic in our lives- we need to allow ourselves to imagine, to dream, to delight in a world that is full of mystical wonder. Creating magic for others is worth the effort that it takes"- Kim Bearden

Hope King, teacher at the Ron Clark Academy 
suggested on her blog:
"I hope that you will challenge yourself to do something different in your classroom. It may not be a room transformation. That may not be your style. But do the unexpected. Give your kids a reason to anticipate school the same way that they anticipate the newest release of their favorite toy or game. Standards won't make that happen. Worksheets won't make that happen. WE make that happen!"- Hope King

Kim and Hope have helped inspire me to try another strategy to reach my classroom goals. 
It’s called classroom transformation.

What is classroom transformation? 
It is when you create a learning environment that sets the tone and builds your students with so much excitement and anticipation, that they simply can't even help but be engaged.
Students participate in highly-engaging lessons that they will remember forever

We read several ocean themed books and participated in many rigorous activities leading up to the classroom transformation. 

All of Amy Lemons and Katie King's Rooted in Reading Packs 
provide rigorous Reading and Language activities. 

Students explored the oceans 
by using Google Earth on iPads! 
Did you know that you can go underwater using Google Earth? 
Students found underwater volcanoes, coral reefs, and scuba divers! 

Students also used Sanibel Island 
and Southwest Florida maps
to practice 2nd grade map skills. 

Memories at Sanibel Island inspired the Magic Kingdom Under the Sea Classroom Transformation in Team Newell.  

Classroom Transformation 
with Shell Inspired Lessons 

 Super Writer, my mom, 
helped transform the room. 
She put shells on sand bars for the shell hunt. 

My parents go to Sanibel Island, Florida each February. This year, they collected shells for the classroom transformation shell hunt. 

They brought home 16 different types of shells. 
(24 of each type) 

Super Writer welcomed Team Newell @ 7:45 am with goggles to swim under the sea. 

Ocean wave sounds quickly faded as students explored the room with excitement: 
"This is the best day of my life!"
"This is amazing!"
"Oh my gosh!"
"Look at the shells!"
"This is beautiful!" 
"I can't believe it!"

Super Writer- My Mom

Super Writer used a variety of shell activities to motivate students to strengthen their writing skills. 

Super Writer has been searching for shells on  Sanibel Island for over 30 years. My little sponges soaked up her every word! 

Student went on a shell hunt. 
They used clipboards and shell sheets 
to record their findings. 


Students explored the shells 
 with microscopes and private eyes. 

Students compared shells. 
How were they similar? How were they different? 

Students made habits adding sand, shells, driftwood, and a turtle or an alligator figure.

Students played shell BINGO.

Students covered their BINGO boards with Swedish Fish as Super Writer called the shell names from the document camera 
on the Smart Board. 

Students danced to The Little Mermaid's Under the Sea and the Beach Boy's Surfin' USA. 

Our 2 hour Super Writer visit 
went by way too fast! 
After lunch, students had so many
 questions about shells!!
We made the time to explore and to share our answers. 

 Super Writer Question:
 How is your house like a shell? 

Students used Google Docs on chromebooks to share their paragraphs. 


Kim Bearden was right! 
Creating magic for others is worth
 the effort that it takes!

My visit to The Ron Clark Academy inspired me to think outside the box and to help me grow as a professional educator.  You can check out more about the academy at 
or watch “The Ron Clark Story” 
at http://youtube/xVsid1Wls10

In just a few weeks, Super Writer and I will be making memories on the beach and we will be planning more classroom transformations! 
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