10. Type on PDF App
I like my classroom to be neat and organized and I do not like a lot of paper and notebooks if I can have the information on the computer. This app allows me to cut down hundreds of copies each year as I give my yearly reading assessments from the iPad instead of on paper. As my students read the leveled books, I keep a running record and notes on my iPad through this app. I have all of the files stored on my computer, so I can easily access them and see where I can help my students without having to keep tons of copies in a notebook.
For more about this app, check out my Post: Apps for the Classroom
9. Worksheet Generators
This worksheet generator has been a wonderful tool that I have used throughout my teaching career. If my math book did not have the kinds of problems that my class needed or if certain students needed additional help with math concepts, I was able to use this website to quickly find math work for my students. Because this is a worksheet generator, I know that there will never be two worksheets exactly the same. I will never run out of resources for my students. I don't know how many hours of preparation that this worksheet generator has saved me. I love it!
8. Document Camera
I remember the days of overhead projectors when the teacher had to use Visa Vis markers and her fingers always turned blue from the ink.
Today in my classroom, I have a similar tool, but the technology has come a long way. I have a document camera instead. This camera connects to my computer and projects through my overhead projector. The advantage of having a camera is that I can put anything under the lens to show my students. The paper no longer has to be clear so the light can shine through like before. I have used my document camera to project images of warm-up problems, samples of students' writing, class demonstrations, and the process of how our classroom caterpillars became butterflies.
7. Online Reading Websites
Everyday my students spend an hour in authentic reading. This hour is broken up between different reading stations including independent reading and listening to reading. There are some wonderful websites my students are able to use to for listening to reading. This station allows students to work on fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension as the text is read aloud to them. Each of these sites have been purchased by my school for my students. They are wonderful resources and I highly recommend them!
This website is wonderful for my second graders. There are different packages including Animals, Earth and Space, Biographies, and Social Studies. The text is read aloud to the students and each word is highlighted as it is read. The text level is perfect for elementary students. There are also additional resources including videos and non-fiction text features like diagrams, captions, and timelines.
Tumblebooks is a great fiction reading resource for students. The words are read aloud to the students and the words light up as they are read. This allows students to match the text with the sound. This resource has many of its books read aloud in Spanish as well as English.
Bookflix is a wonderful resources because it pairs books by topic. Non-fiction books are paired with the fiction books that on the same topic. This is a great resource when you are teaching your students the similarities and differences between these two genres. My students really love this site and all of the books that are available.
6. Electronic Math Manipulatives
I use electronic math manipulatives to teach my students addition and subtraction. After the students have a chance to use manipulatives themselves, the online ones are a great reminder of the process of adding and subtracting. I project these manipulatives onto my Promethean board, so all my students can see as I solve the math problems.
Below are some different examples of electronic math manipulatives:
This app has been a wonderful resource as I have been learning the new Common Core Standards. It is so handy to have the standards always at my fingertips. I had saved each document onto my computer since I do not like always having a printed copy, but it still took time to open each document to read it. With this app, I can quickly select the subject and grade level and see my standards. It is also very easy to switch between grade levels to see what my students should already know and what they will learn next.
4. Promethean Board
I have been blessed to have a Promethean board in my classroom during my entire teaching career. The Promethean Board and its ActivInspire software have so many wonderful options and create so many opportunities in my classroom. I am able to create flipcharts to engage my students, write directly onto of any computer screen, and screen shot any image with the ActivInspire software. My students are able to use technology and also manipulate the screen and the items to help them learn.
3. Computers, iTouches, iPads
Providing my students with the ability to have immediate access to the internet and all of its resources has been wonderful. Through these electronic devices, my students have been able to view these reading websites, research topics for writing, take reading comprehension tests, and publish their writing. I plan to allow my students to conduct mini-research projects and create more online products in the coming year.
2. Classroom Website
Through my classroom website, I am able to connect with parents and students about what is going on in my classroom. Parents are able to see daily schedules, weekly homework, spelling words, and any awards that have been awarded throughout the month. Students have access to many online websites and games that we use in class. My hope is that through these links, my students will continue to be learning even when they leave school for the day. My parents know exactly where to look on my website if they ever have a question or a concern about my class.
My fiance is currently working at Camp McCall, a Christian summer camp in Sunset, SC where there is very little phone service and definitely no internet service. He tries to call me when he can, but because of the poor service, the phone cuts out at least 3 times within our ten minute conversation.
I have begun to write him letters, and they have reminded me how wonderful email is. If I write a letter on Monday night and mail it on Tuesday, then he will receive my message from Monday on Wednesday afternoon if I am lucky. With email, we are constantly connected with so many people around the world in an instant. I can send questions, concerns, comments, or encouragement to my teachers, administrators, and parents in the matter of seconds.