Thursday, February 28, 2013

Glogster - Integrating Technology

Ever heard of Glogster?  Yeah, me either... until I went to a district PD.  This was way back in the fall, but I knew I wanted to try some things out that I had earned on how to integrate technology into the classroom and into the units I was already planning on teaching.

Glogster is basically an online poster board.  Students can choose from various backgrounds, graphics, images, everything.  Or they can choose a pre-made template.  They can add text boxes and change the font, color, size, etc.  I used Glogster for our States of Matter unit.  I put my students in groups of three and four.  Our tech coach created accounts for each of our groups and gave them a little intro.  Then the kids went to town!  I did create a checklist for them so they would include the necessities for showing me what they learned about the states of matter; it included things like: create a background, create a tile, include 3-6 graphics, included three text boxes, etc.

And voila!

The projects took a little longer than anticipated, but isn't that how it always happens?!  These are two of the five projects my students created.  I was really impressed.  You can click the play buttons to hear the students talking.  I also got a lot of great feedback from parents saying they were impressed as well.

Here are a few other pieces of technology that I've been trying out this year.  These are free!




Monday, February 4, 2013

Monday Made It - Valentine's Day Goodies!

I am linking up with Tara from 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made It!  I haven't linked up since November.  Sigh.  OK, so I saw this cute idea {here} on Pinterest... of course.  I've always liked the idea of homemade play dough and thought it would be a perfect little Valentine's Day goody for my second graders.  To holiday-it-up a little, I used a cookie cutter to shape the play dough into hearts.  How cute, right?!

What?  It's so cute, you want to make it too?  OK, here's the recipe:

(makes 5-7 "servings")
1 packet of Kool-Aid
1 cup of flour
1/2 cup of salt
2 tablespoons of cream of tartar
1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
1 cup of boiling water

1. Mix your Kool-Aid, flour, salt, and cream of tartar in a mixing bowl

2. Add the boiling water and vegetable oil; stir well until it becomes firm

3. Grab a handful of dough and sprinkle with a little flour (I had some flour on wax paper)

4. Flatten out your dough, use a cookie cutter to cut out your shape

And voila!  Cutest thing ever.

I put the play dough in small round tupperware I found at the Dollar Store... 5 for $1.00.  Then I made a label for my kiddos and they were done!  I can't wait to give them to my students!

Another Pinterest idea... Paint chip bookmarks!  So easy.  I "borrowed" some pink and red paint chips from Walmart, hole-punched them, and put some ribbon through them!  Just a little Valentine's Day goody to have on my students' desks when they come in on Valentine's Day morning!

Be sure to check out all the crafts at 4th Grade Frolics!


Friday, February 1, 2013

Cheerios & Jell-O = Matter

My little second graders have been learning about Matter!  We have done a lot of fun things so far but I want to share some of my students' favorites.  I saw this idea on Pinterest and liked it so much, we made them in my class!  We watched a BrainPop Jr video on solids, liquids, and gases and talked about the atoms in each state of matter.  The following day, we made these posters with Cheerios!  I tell you... they LOVE any activity that involves food!

Another fun thing we did after learning about changing states of matter was make Jell-O!  First we talked about how to read and follow a recipe.  Then I split students into groups and gave them a numbered card 1-4.  Each number/student had a different job so they could all pitch in.

#1 poured the jell-o mix into the bowl

#2 poured the cup of water into the jell-o bowl

#3 stirred the jell-o and water

#4 poured the jell-o into cups (with my help)

We ate the jell-o for snack the next day!

Next??  We are braving a Glogster project to show what we've learned about the states of matter!