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A tool that I have just been introduced to and I am using in my class is Xtra Math. Xtra math is a free math fact practice site. You assign operations that you want your students to practice and be automatic with.
When students go to the site, they each have their own unique access code so they can't log onto each others. The students can also access it from home and their parents can track to their progress. The first time that students go to the site, they take a "placement test". The length of the test depends on the students success. If they are doing well, it will be longer. After students have completed the test, they have practice sessions which are called "Race the Teacher". A animated man is the teacher and the student tries to respond before him. The placement test determines what type of facts the students will work on. For example, my students are working on addition (1st grade). My students who really struggled are working on 0s, 1s, and doubles. Whereas my higher students are working on 7s, 8s, and 9s.
Students master math facts by responding correctly 2 out of the last 3 attempts within 3 seconds. Once a student has mastered all of the facts in a set, they earn a certificate. The student can then move on to harder operations (as long as you have assigned them to the student).
You also have access to reports that shows students' activity, accuracy, and what facts they are practicing. Their overall accuracy report may look like this
A big portion of my report card is determining students' math fact accuracy. I'm using this to help facilitate the assessment. The student above has mastered addition according to Xtra math, so I will do some flash cards with him to double check his ability and enter it in the report card accordingly.
Parents really seem to like this site as well. I have some "high-maintenance" parents who are never satisfied with the amount of homework I give their students. This seems to pacify them a bit because the student can practice at home for a considerable amount of time (if desired).
My son is in thrid grade and is using this sight right now and we love it. His teacher has not made a program in it, but it is still so useful!
One resource I used in a poetry unit that I really liked was wordle (wordle.net). During a 5th grade poetry unit, I had students write a free verse poem and use the software to display it. You can use the software to make a word cloud. If a certain word is entered more than once when creating the word list, that word is larger in the word cloud. The color scheme and arrangement of the words can be changed to fit the student's taste. It was a creative way to display the words from their poetry. I also thought of having students describe something using as many adjectives as they can and making a word cloud, or creating a list of "respect" words, and making a class "respect" word cloud. There are so many ways you could use this in the classroom.
I was renctly working with some students who were writing student reports. One of the activities we wanted them to do was to read the report as if they were a journalist reporting from a location. For this I decided to use Green screen movie FX for ipad. The app is very easy to use and allowed the students to take out the normal background and then use one from in Green Screen Movie FX. This allowed them to report from Mountains, stylish hotels and even out in space. They had great fun working on this project too.
I re recommend the website "Glogster.com". This is a great website for making online poster. They have teacher account and student account. This enables you to manage your students' account. It is easy for management. It is a great tool to teach students how to use online resources.
Anyone can be an author of an ibook. Apple is offering their publishing tool, iBooks Author, for free! Visit http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ibooks-author/id490152466?ls=1&m... for more information! And start creating your own iBook for use in your classroom!
Wow, what a great resource Heidi! I can see this tool being beneficial for a wide variety of classroom uses.
The above link is a link to Glogster. If you haven't heard of Glogster is a great tool to use in the classroom. What it is, is a presentation tool that students can use. It allows students to create a poster, although they call them Glogs. Students can add pictures, text, graphics just like a normal poster however it also gives students the ability to add audio and videos as well. The final project can be embedded into a wiki, blog or in class website. It is a great way for students to show their understanding of a concept as well as their creativity. It is very easy to customize the layout and the look of each Glog. Pictures are easy to manipulate, rotate and move. This is a great and unique way for students to demonstrate their understanding which is easy for all students (and teachers) to access the projects from any computer once they are embedded to a wiki, blog, or website. Give it a try.
This sounds like a great program that all educators should use or anyone who simply wants to make a poster! Thanks for sharing!
Here are a few (there are many more!) apps that can assist students who are struggling with mental math.
NxtApp 4 Kids ($1.99) - allows you to email your scores
Mathemagics - Mental Math Tricks ($1.99) - teaches multiplication and division tricks
Number Battle - Mental Math (free) - two player (requires 2 devices) game
Mental Math Free (free) - focuses on multiplication tables
Math Workout (free) - simple and fun exercises
I would like to share a cloud based program I was introduced to while learning about cloud computing in CEP 810. The program is called First in Math (firstinmath.com). First in Math is for grades K - 8 and emphasizes fundamental skills, reasoning, number sense, and measurement. The program uses a variety of interactive games to engage students, including the 24 Game. Not only are the students able to use the 24 Game to practice their basic math skills, they can also use this game to simplify algebraic expressions. As an educator, I think one of the best parts of this online program is that it can be accessed by students and parents at home. Unfortunately the online program is not free to educators, but it is affordable at $8.00 or less per student.
There are many applications but here are some applications available on an Android device that could help students practice their spelling skills:
First Words Animals (free)
Kids Learn to Spell Animals (free)
Balloon Spell for Kids (0.99)