This Week in ES Tech – Special In Like a Lamb Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • Students in KG C are using the Thinglink app to create an ‘All About Me’ interactive image. Sample

    • Students in 4AP and 4TP are creating stop motion animation movies to go along with their Feature Article.

  • Communication

    • Students in KG T started using student blogs for documenting their thinking and learning – Sample

    • Students in 5th grade are creating presentations to support their learning from the non-fiction integrated TPaCK unit spurred on by their trip to Ranthambore.

    • Students in 1J are now on Twitter as a class. You can follow them as @Shanti1JIndia

  • Collaboration

    • Students in 4R are posting their Pages documents of Feature Articles along with reflection of the writing process that was recorded on EE. They are inviting their buddies at Shekou International School in Shenzhen, China to read and comment on their writing. 4R students will also be doing a Google+ hangout with their school “buddies” in China to share their knowledge of writing Feature Articles.

  • Critical Thinking

    • Students in Gd1J are using Kodable and Hopscotch to begin exploring coding/ programming techniques.

    • Students in 3W and 3D are designing and building Lego cars powered by electric motors to demonstrate their understanding of circuits.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Survey Reminder – Last week the Tech department sent out a survey about Tech PDbeing offered at AES. Please take a moment to fill it out.  It is pretty short and will help us serve you better.

ES Design Challenge #1 – Thanks to all for your support of the the Creative Vibrations – Musical Instrument Challenge. Altogether nearly 150 students designed and built instruments! Look for videos on the ES YouTube Channel shortly. If you have feedback to help us improve the next challenges please send it to either your grade level tech rep or me. Be sure to look for details on the next design and build challenge “The Two Minute Film Festival” coming out next week!

Another Cart of Macbook Airs – Due to lower than expected HS enrollment, the ES has been given another 20 Macbook Air computers for student use. Please accept a Google Calendar invitation for signing up for the cart that will show up in your e-mail later today. As you do so please realize what the impact of signing up for large chunks of time has on others that may wish to use the laptops.

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – As more of us are using MTV routines and providing design thinking opportunities in our classrooms the question becomes what are the next steps in creating and growing that culture of thinking and learning. In this interesting blog post, Terry Heick advocates for using a Gradual Release of Responsibility Model as a path forward. Lots of excellent ideas in a short piece, well worth the time.

This Week in ES Tech – Special President’s Day Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • 3D and 3W are integrating the design and build process into their science unit on electricity and circuits using among other things Squishy Circuits.

  • Communication

    • Students in 1K used Book Creator app to journal about India Week activities. They shared these with parents via Dropbox. Student Sample

  • Collaboration

    • Students in KGLK and KGT worked with Sievert’s 4th and Standish’s 5th graders to capture action poses on iPad cameras for their upcoming mixed media sculptures.

  • Critical Thinking

    • 3N students are participating in the Lumosity pilot by actively engaging with the program each school day for at least 15 minutes.

    • Students in grade 4 and 5 are applying web searching techniques to their research of non-fiction writing.

    • KG students are using QR codes to access the Sight Words Symbaloo.

    • Students in 1L are using illustrations (Drawing Pad app) to help with their revision of authors as mentors text. Student Sample

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Creative Vibrations – Musical Instrument Design and Build Challenge – The challenge is heading into its last week! Please take a moment or two this week to remind your students about the challenge. If you are looking for a way to promote or sustain interest please consider showing this video about the Landfill Harmonic. Look for details about next week’s showcase later this week.

Password Changes – In the next week or so you will be getting some information from David regarding changing your AES Google Apps password as well as your computer log-in password.  This change will happen by a prompt being pushed to you. When the prompt pops up on your laptop, just follow the on screen directions. You might also want to change your Veracross password as well. If you have any questions or need help just contact a member of the ES Tech Team.

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – In cooperation with the AES carpenters, Phil has designed and built an amazing iPad stand for classroom use. Please check out this video about how the stand can be used by both teachers and students. In addition be sure to ask about how you or your students can use YouTube Video Editor to enhance videos (think Explain Everything) that they upload to our ES YouTube Channel. ES Tech has nine of these stands available for check-out!

This Week in ES Tech – Special Valentines Day Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • Students in 1C used Hopscotch to continue to explore coding/programming techniques. Last week they were working on debugging code and remixing a program someone else created.

  • Communication

    • All students in Grade 2 are using their personal Evernote accounts to document their India Week experiences and then share them with parents via their blogs.

    • Students in 1K created India Week books using the BookCreator app and shared them with parents via their classroom blog.

  • Collaboration

    • KGC used Explain Everything to document their observations of India Week. They then jigsawed their presentations with each other using the slideshows they created.

  • Critical Thinking

    • In conjunction with Tammy Pretz, students in 4Team  are using Destiny Quest to refine their searches for their upcoming research projects that are part of their integrated non-fiction units.

    • KGG students explained their knowledge about parts of trees using Drawing Pad.

    • Students in KGS used the Tangrams app to learn about shapes and show their critical thinking skills.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Creative Vibrations – Musical Instrument Design and Build Challenge – The challenge is off and running! Please take a moment or two this week to remind your students about the challenge. Thanks to the many ES teachers who included information about the challenge in their weekly newsletters or their classroom Blogs. If your students are struggling for some ideas to get started on their instruments try showing this video created by Nicole or direct them to the New York Philharmonic Instrument Lab for kids.

Printing Request – Please do NOT print classroom sets of documents on the ES printers. If you need more than three copies of a document please use a photocopier.  A LOT of paper has been coming out of the Neem printers lately. Thanks!

Password Changes – In the next week or so you will be getting some information from David regarding changing your AES Google Apps password as well as your computer log-in password.  This change will happen by a prompt being pushed to you. When the prompt pops up on your laptop, just follow the on screen directions. You might also want to change your Veracross password as well. If you have any questions or need help just contact a member of the ES Tech Team.

Student iPad Survey Data Ready – Remember the iPad survey students in grades 2-5 took as part of our 1-1 iPad program evaluation right before Winter Break? The data is ready and we would like the opportunity to share and process it with your grade level team during a upcoming team meeting. Please send Gary the date when we could have 20 minutes to look at and discuss this interesting information together. Thanks!

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – In the spirit of making and inventing comes this short and cute video from The Kid President on how to be an inventor. Especially love how he reinforces the idea of trying something, not being afraid to make a mistake and trying again (Iteration at its best!) Hat tip to Gene Q for this one!

This Week in ES Tech – Special India Week Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • KG S students explained their knowledge about parts of trees using Drawing Pad

  • KG C and KG T is using Tangrams app to learn about shapes and show their critical thinking skills.

  • KG Lori are using Drawing Pad app to create self portraits.

  • Students in 1R used Kodable and Daisy the Dinosaur to begin learning coding/programming techniques.

  • Students in 1D and 1P are creating e-books about Mo Willems using Book Creator.

  • Students in 1K are using a custom template created in Book Creator to document and share their India Week experiences.

  • All students in Grade 2 now have Evernote accounts and are using them to document and share their India Week experiences.

  • Students in the Grade 3 Teamroom are learning to use Evernote to code and curate (tag) their non-fiction reading notes for their research projects.

  • Students in 4R began collaborating with a school in China using a Google Hangout.

  • In conjunction with Tammy Pretz, students in 4R and 4S are using Destiny Quest to refine their searches for their upcoming research projects that are part of their integrated non-fiction units.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Creative Vibrations – Musical Instrument Design and Build Challenge – Today kicks off the first ES Design and Build Challenge! Please take a few minutes ASAP to share this video and this information blurb with your students. The challenge is open to all ES students and will culminate in a showcase and an opportunity for students to record themselves playing their instruments solo or in a group. Other than sharing the challenge with your students there is no other expectation for your involvement. However if you would like to incorporate this challenge as part of choice time or if you see curricular connections and would like support please feel free to contact the ES Tech Team.

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – Last Thursday a group of AES students, teachers, parents and administrators spent the day envisioning what teaching and learning might look like at AES in the near future. Prior to the day we looked at a variety of interesting resources including The Future of Learning and Learning to Change – Changing to Learn. After loads of terrific thinking and discussion, ten groups (made up of members from each constituency) each created a scenario for teaching and learning at AES. Interestingly all scenarios included a reference to giving students more choice. Stay tuned.

 

This Week in ES Tech – Special Design and Build Follow- Up Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Students in KG S and KG G are using the Drawing Pad app to create self portraits Sample

  • KG C students showed their learning of addition word problems using Explain Everything Sample

  • KG L students explained their knowledge about parts of trees using Drawing Pad Sample

  • KG T is using Tangrams app to learn about shapes and show their critical thinking skills.

  • Student in 1C used Kodable and Daisy the Dinosaur to explore coding/programming techniques.

  • Students in 1D and 1P are creating books about  Mo Willems using Book Creator, the iPad’s camera and the Docscan app.

  • 2S students are researching non-fiction subjects using the Britannica Encyclopedia database which can be found off the ES library website.

  • In cooperation with Ms. Pretz, 4th and 5th graders are using Destiny Quest to refine their searches for their upcoming research projects that are part of their integrated non-fiction units.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

ES Tech Shorthanded This Week – FYI Ruchira and Phil will both be out this week. In the meantime, please direct any tech related needs to Gary directly. We look forward to having everyone back next Monday!

ES Tech Committee – Meets tomorrow at 3:45PM in ES124 (Aaron Pugh’s room) if you have something for the committee please see your grade level reps. Stay tuned for the first ES wide design and build challenge launching next week!

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – Thanks for the support and positive feedback on the Design and Build centered faculty meeting last week! Many ES teachers have volunteered to explore some design and build challenges with their classes. It is not too late, if you would like to try something this Spring just let us know. In addition, one of the key elements that emerged from the discussion around design and build was giving students more choice in their learning. Here is a terrific TED talk called Hackschooling in which 13 year old Logan explains how he has “hacked” his education to meet his needs. In addition here is an excellent article from MindShift that gives some practical strategies for creating more time in your classroom which could then be used as 20% time or passion projects. Finally, additional Design and Build related resources, including the presentation slides from last Tuesday, can be found on the ES Tech Blog.

 

This Week in ES Tech – Special Rested and Ready To Go Edition

What’s Happening:

  • Teachers, IAs and staff enjoyed some much deserved time off.

Student iPad Clean-Out-  if you did not get a chance before break, please ask your students to “clean out” their iPads by deleting any unneeded images, projects and files from their devices before Winter Break. This will make updating the student iPads easier for us.

iPads for New Students- Hardayal is busy preparing iPads for new students. This means wiping the iPads from students that left at the semester and re-imaging them with the correct grade level apps. This process takes a bit of time, so iPads will be delivered to classrooms as they are ready (at the latest Tuesday by the end of school).

Updating Teacher and IA iPads – If you need updates run on your iPad please drop it off with Hardayal in ES134 first thing in the morning and it will be ready by the end of the day.

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week  – Looking for a teaching related New Year resolution? How about “hacking” your classroom this year? In this context, hacking means employing the spirit of innovation and problem-solving that hackers personify. For examples of how one teacher “hacked” her grade three and four classroom check out this short video. In it Michelle Cordy discusses how she “hacked” her classroom to allow her students to work with her to “scratch their personal learning itch” and in the process develop grit and deep thinking.

 

This Week in ES Tech – Special The Holidays are Upon Us Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • KG students are using the Animate it app to make ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ animation They used the custom built iPad stands to take photos for the animations as they worked with the play dough

 

    • KG students are using the Puppet Pals app to retell the story of ‘The Adventures of Chameleon’, Voicethread app to make ‘Hungry Caterpillar’ books and Lifecards app to make gift cards with the Hungry Caterpillar theme.

  • Communication

    • 3N students used the custom built iPad stands to take pictures of finding the area of irregular shapes and then importing into EE.

 

    • Students in 1C, 1R, 1J and 1D are using Easy Blog Jr. app to upload to the student blogs

  • Collaboration

    • 5 student council members are taking video footage to document unsafe student behavior on the rocks. The goal is to create a movie to share with all ES students to bring about awareness and to offer alternatives

  • Critical Thinking

    • 5V students are using the app Coach’s Eye to capture how high a container rises as a result of a chemical reaction

    • 4R students are doing independent studies and using iPads to research questions related to their topic.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

IA iPads Going Home! – Ahead of bringing your iPads home starting on Friday, we would request all IAs to please stop up to ES134 and sign the waiver.

Student iPad Clean-Up –  just as students are likely cleaning out their desks this week, please ask them to “clean out” their iPads by deleting any unneeded images, projects and files from their devices before Winter Break. This will make updating the student iPads easier for us after break.

Lock Up Your Tech Goodies –  Before you leave on Friday please find a secure (locked) spot for your digital cameras, Flip cameras, document camera, remote controls and even the pens and erasers from your SMARTboard.

Power Off Projectors – As you walk out the door on Friday, please take 10 seconds to double check that you have flipped the power off switch at the tech hub in your room. Just like you, your projector needs a break 🙂

iPad Student Survey Reminder Grades 3-5- As a second piece of the evaluation of our 1-1 iPad program the ES Tech Team has created a short survey for students in grades 3-5 to take. The aim of the survey is to capture your students thoughts regarding the impact the iPad has had on their learning. The survey should take about 10 minutes and we will repeat the survey in the Spring. We would appreciate if you could have you students take the survey before we break for the holidays. If you have any questions or would like help facilitating this important survey in your classroom please don’t hesitate to ask.

File Under Times Change – The Digital Story of the Nativity tells the story of Christmas if social media had been around 2000 years ago. Enjoy!

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – In May 2013 Common Sense Media surveyed 950+ US teachers and administrators on their feelings regarding technology in the classroom. The interesting results can be found in this infographic.

Have a restful Winter Break, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

 

This Week in ES Tech – Special Computer Science Education Week Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • KG is using Book Creator app to make non fiction pattern books

    • KG is using the PuppetPals app to make stories about Knuffle Bunny

    • 3D and 3W students painted the map of India on the ES Greens – View the stop motion animation of it here.

  • Communication

    • Students in 1D are using the Lifecards app to make postcards and emailing those to family and friends.

    • 5I students are working to build an authentic audience by using their blogs showcase their passions.

  • Collaboration

    • Follow 1D @wearethetigers, 1R @1Rtigers and 1C @namaste1stgrade as they collaborate with classes around the world to study about clouds

    • Students in 1J are using Facetime to connect with friends who have left AES

    • Some first grade classes are using blogs to document their learning

    • 5S students created tutorials in math and created a YouTube playlist to organize for future viewing.

  • Critical Thinking

    • 1L and 1P students are using the Weather Channel app to find out the weather in cities that they will be travelling to during the winter break. They are then analyzing the weather findings to help ‘Pack a suitcase’. They are using Pic Collage app to make photo collages of travel items. They then used Explain Everything app to record their thinking.

    • 5Team students are using visible thinking routine templates uploaded to DropBox opening them in Explain Everything and using them to deepen their thinking in the Freedom unit.

    • Students in 5V are using Popplet for jotting key ideas and making mind maps as they read biographies of freedom fighters.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Computer Science Education Week – December 9-16 is Computer Science education week. As part of the the activities is #hourofcode an initiative aimed at providing kids an introduction to programming. At the ES level the awesome iPad app Hopscotch has created an excellent tutorial that will teach kids the basics of programming using Hopscotch in an hour culminating with a certificate of completion. If you would like to give Hopscotch a try let the ES Tech Team know and we would love to download the app and guide your #hourofcode!

Teacher iPad Updates – If you have not done so already please bring your iPad up to ES134 to have iOS and app updates run. If you drop it off first thing in the morning you can pick it up at the end of the day.

Exploring Design Thinking and the Maker Movement – Hewlett Packard through their HP Catalyst Academy has been offering a free massive online open course (MOOC) around the topic of the maker movement and schools. The next iteration of the course starts January 13 and runs for three weeks. As we explore design thinking and its possible role in the ES this looks like a fantastic opportunity. Please consider joining me in this learning opportunity. To witness the power of the maker movement check out this amazing video. Hat tip to Mary Miller for the vid!

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – Google Search by Reading Level. There are so many cool advanced search features in Google. One that may be of interest to ES teachers is the ability to narrow search results by reading level. Check out this short video on how to do this in just a couple of clicks. Happy searching. Hat tip to Kathryn VanDyke for this!

Thanks for your support of technology in the ES!

This Week in ES Tech – Special It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • KG is making letter collages using the PicCollage app

  • Communication

    • 1R hosted an Instructional film festival to share the “How-to’ videos created using Explain Everything/ iMovie apps

    • 1C hosted an Open House to share weather related projects. (PuppetPal weather reports, The Weather Channel app)

  • Critical Thinking

    • Library – Grade 2 is using Explain Everything to show their understanding of Dewey Locations to find non-fiction books in the library. They explain in detail what kind of books each section has, to share with the wider audience.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Teacher iPad Updates – If you have not done so already please bring your iPad up to ES134 to have iOS and app updates run. If you drop it off first thing in the morning you can pick it up at the end of the day.

Bumpers on Student iPads – ALL student iPads should have a rubber bumper. We have noticed that some iPads do not. Please check to see that all of your students’ iPads have a bumper. If there are devices that do not have one please send Gary an e-mail with the number of bumpers needed.

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – Christmas Websites of Interest:

Norad Tracks Santa – The North American Aerospace Defense Command, also known as NORAD has a fantastic tradition of tracking Santa’s path on Christmas Eve. This excellent site also has good resources about Santa, holidays games, holiday messages from kids around the world, and archives of Santa’s path from previous years on Google Earth which could be used to help teach continents, bodies of water and longitude and latitude. In math students could calculate the distance and speed of Santa’s deliveries.

Northpole.com – Santa’s home on the web which includes Christmas arts and crafts, games, a place to make a personalized Santa story and with help from an adult send a letter to Santa and receive a reply. Be sure to visit the Elf Pal Academy section which features a plethora of printable Google Docs geared to lower elementary students and EAL learners.

Santa’s Net – The best part of this old school site is the Christmas Traditions Around the World section. This could be an interesting resource for launching a discussion of traditions and diversity. Over 60 countries are represented.

Classroom Jr – Offers all sorts of free printables for classroom use. They have a nice selection of Mad-Libs, word ladders and puzzles, and Christmas poems for you to choose from.

Storynory – Looking for Christmas related stories for a listening station or a class listen along? Look no further. Since 2005 Storynory has published weekly free audio stories. The site has become an online treasure-trove featuring a mixture of original stories, fairytales, and specially adapted myths and histories.

 

This Mid-Week in ES Tech – Special Thanksgiving Edition

What’s Happening: (Below is a sampling of activities from around the ES)

  • Creativity

    • Students in 1J and 1R are creating “How to Videos”  using iMovie  Sample video

    • Robyn I. and Liv are using an online scheduling software called Sched to create mini-lesson choices for their students to choose from during writers’ workshop.

    • KG is using the Pic Collage app to make ‘Letter’ collages

  • Communication

    • 5I will be using Google Sites as a place to document their learning.

  • Collaboration

    • Students in 5S are creating math tutorials that will be put in a playlist on Youtube and linked to the class blog.

    • 1R and 1C are using Twitter to collaborate with classes around the world. Follow them @1Rtigers and @Namaste1stGrade

  • Critical Thinking

    • 3W and 3D students are using a commenting guideline document created by Sharon Dent to help them comment on classmates blog posts.

    • 5I students are using the back channel TodaysMeet to share their thinking about the read aloud book. See what it looks like in action.

    • 5Team students are using TodaysMeet to make their thinking about a field trip to the Gandhi Museum visible for each other to see. They also used it to share reflections on a book used to kick off their Freedom Unit in social studies.

    • 1J students are using Explain Everything to show their understanding of ‘Measurement’. See Sample

    • Students in 1K are using Infuse Learning as a tool to practice mental pictures. See samples

    • 1J is using the Drawing Pad and Explain Everything apps to work on Comprehension- Strategy- Visualization. They heard the poem the poem My Neighbors Purple Dog by Jack Prelutsky and let the words paint a picture in their mind. They then used the Drawing Pad app to draw the picture they had in their mind. They then brought the work into Explain Everything and explained and described their visualizations.

*If you have something going on in your classroom that you would like to share with others in the tech note please drop us an e-mail.

Teacher iPad Updates – If you have not done so already please bring your iPad up to ES134 to have iOS and app updates run. If you drop it off first thing in the morning you can pick it up at the end of the day.

iPad Printing – Thanks to Kailash, we have a new printing solution in place for the iPads. Using a application called Handy Print we can print from any iPad to almost any printer in the ES. We tested it out last week and it worked great. As you print this week please provide us with feedback.

Design Thinking – Some of the hottest topics in education right now are tinkering, making or design and build. Whatever the name design thinking is at the heart of the process. This year the ES Tech Committee has been doing some thinking and work around the topic of design thinking and its role in education. In addition a few teachers have been experimenting with design thinking challenges in their classrooms. If you would like to learn more about this topic check out this article or sign up for a free course from HP Catalyst Academy.

Tech and Learning Tip of the Week – Twitter is starting to see some use in our ES classrooms! Tami Ruebush created a class account @1Rtigers  and started connecting with other primary classes and 1R students actually met one of their connected classroom teachers last week during the iPad Summit. If you are wondering why Twitter, Kate Clute has written a terrific post about how students benefit from having a classroom Twitter account and another post on how her class using Twitter led to an interesting field trip. If you would like to learn more about using Twitter in your classroom or to grow your PLN just let a member of the ES Tech Team know and we can get you started.

Thanks for your support of technology in the ES!