Top 100

Friday, January 29, 2016

Digital Challenge #8 Winner! - Best How-to Video #ipaded #diy #wsdtech

Digital Challenge #8 - How-to Video

Congratulations to this week's winner

Winner - Monique from Foothills - Judges were looking for a how-to video that:
  • must be between one and five minutes in length (no short videos)
  • must show us how to do something
  • speaker is engaging and informative
  • video is easy to follow and clear
  • video may be edited to fit timeframe (don't bore the judges with repetitive actions)
  • (optional) can include royalty-free music, titles, graphics, transitions
The judges liked Monique's pacing, editing, use of music, and professionalism that she showed. It was enjoyable to watch and very well done. Great job Monique! Monique will receive her Apple ear buds soon.


Annalise from Orchard took second this week. The judges liked her very clear video that detailed the steps on how to make a light saber.


The judges enjoyed watching all the videos. This week's digital challenge is see who can take the best selfie.

Honorable Mention this week went to Austin from Washington Elementary for her knitting video. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Looking for the perfect app?   

Well it is your lucky day...  App Recommendations - By EdTech Teacher

This website allows you to search by type of device OR by learning activity.  Searching by learning activity will assist in finding apps that you wouldn't necessarily find on your own.

Research is clear that when you give students choice into how they show their learning they have a higher level of engagement and their learning is improved.

The ability to search by learning activity would allow you to have several apps on hand for students to choose from to show their learning, enabling you to move up the SAMR model in your classroom.

Another awesome feature of this website is the ability to choose device type once you find the activity or the app, so if you have Chrome, Mac, iOS, or Android this will find the app you might need.

Check out the site and see the results and please share the site with other teachers...

App Recommendations - By EdTech Teacher

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Ancient Egypt Minecraft Buildings #ipaded #minecraft

What to do when your teacher asks you to recreate some buildings in Ancient Egypt and you're a game?  Why you use Minecraft, of course!  Check out Pioneer Middle School students Alexis and Jared's Minecraft buildings based on their study on Ancient Greece.  Nicely done gentlemen.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Digital Challenge #7 Winner! #edtech #ipaded #donuts

Digital Challenge #7 - Rube Goldberg Video

Congratulations to this week's winner

Winner - Ethan from Pioneer - Judges were looking for a Rube Goldberg video that:
  • video completes a task
  • video has a 'wow' factor that impresses the judges
  • there is a creative use of materials
  • video is easy to follow and is organized
  • whole event uses at least seven components or actions (for example, five dominoes falling is ONE component)
  • whole video is under three minutes in length
Ethan's Rube Goldberg video followed the rolling ball on it's way to spilling the dog food into the dog's ball.  The judges liked a lot of elements to it, including the music, titles, editing, pace and originality.  Great job Ethan!

Honorable Mention went to Rilee at Orchard.  We love your hard work, Rilee.


Friday, January 15, 2016

Digital Challenge #6 Winners #ipaded

Congratulations to this week's winner

Winner - Alexandria from Orchard - Judges were looking for a time lapse video that:
  • used the iPad to create an original time-lapse video
  • was engaging and interesting to watch
  • had a MAXIMUM time under two minutes
  • used background music that was either original, downloaded from a royalty free music site or used with permission from the artist
Alexandria's video of her drawing an anime character was very fun to watch and included very well-timed music.  In talking with her she said that was the first time she had drawn that particular character and it was inspired by a Pokemon character that she likes.  What we really liked about Alexandria's drawing was that it was an original piece.

First runner-up was Abby from Foothills who colored a fish with a great soundtrack to back it up.  We liked the music and the colorful fish.  Abby went a step further and got permission from Norman Greenbaum to use his song "Spirit in the Sky".  Great digital citizenship!

A few other videos that caught our attention were the Ethan's Rubik's cube and Faith's snowman melting videos.




Thursday, January 14, 2016

Three Google Tips (Video) #chrome #edtech #googlechrome #snagit

Our technology department tried out Google Hangouts on Air today instead of making a formal tech video like we've done in the past.  We liked the ease of use of the tool, the ability to share our screens as well as our talking heads, and the fact that the video was immediately uploaded and archived on YouTube.  You can check it out below.

I talked about using SnagIt to leave audio feedback for students in Google Docs (thanks @alicekeeler), Mark talked about pinning tabs in Chrome so they always open up when you start the browser, and Ron shared an extension that allows users to edit Microsoft Office documents right in Google Drive and maintain their file format.

Look for us to do one once a week and if you have suggestions for topics let us know in the comments.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Epic! - Free Books for Kids #ipaded #reading #freebooks @EpicKidsBooks

A colleague of mine told me about the site Epic! today and after looking at it I was impressed.  It's a reading site geared toward K-5 classrooms that gives free online reading materials and books, with many popular titles and authors.  It's very similar to Zing which we use in our district too.

Educators can create free accounts and add up to 36 students, who can read for free while they're at school on school devices.  If they put the app on their devices at home it costs $4.99/month to access their profile and read the same books.  Right now the site claims to have over 10,000 books along with an iOS and Android app.  When a teacher creates an account he/she can add students and give them a unique four-digit code to login.  As long as the teacher signs in once on each device then students can read from that device with their own personalized choices, avatar and more.

The site includes personalized recommendations, the ability for teachers to track students' progress and the option to have books read to them, for some titles.  Pretend like you're in a real library and check it out!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Triventy - Collaborative Classroom Quizzes #edtech #triventy

I came across another classroom quiz system today that I thought was worth noting.  Triventy is very similar to Quizalize, Quizziz and Kahoot! It allows you to quickly add multiple choice and open-ended questions along with images.  Participants can then join via a web link and code or by scanning the QR code, which can be a lot faster in some circumstances.

The app is very easy to use and does give results at the end, which is a nice feature, and students can join on any device.  It's worth checking out.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Digital Challenge #5 - Short Story Winners #edtech #ipaded

Digital Challenge #5 - Short Story

Congratulations to this week's winner

Winner - Abigail from Foothills - Judges were looking for a short story that was:
  • engaging
  • had good grammar and punctuation
  • had good word choice
  • was under 500 words
  • was organized and easy to follow

Abigail's story was all of those and more.  You can read it below:


Our runner-up was Yulissa from Orchard.  Her submission is here:


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Use SnagIt to Give Audio/Video Feedback in Google Docs #gafe #googledocs @techsmith

Here is the blog post from Alice Keeler where I got my information.

Giving feedback to students is important and giving valuable feedback to students is crucial.  No teacher likes to write or type out feedback that a student doesn't look at or barely notices because he/she feels like they went through all the effort to give it and it just gets tossed aside.

Audio and video feedback, however, raises the bar and engages students more.  If a student can see their document and hear the teacher's voice guiding them through the positive things and what needs to be worked on, it can help the feedback makes its mark.

When students use Google Drive there has always only been one easy way to give audio feedback and that was through the Kaizena Mini add-on, and even that wasn't the easiest of propositions.  But today I read on Alice Keeler's awesome blog about using the SnagIt Chrome extension to create and leave feedback for students and it's very easy to do.  The greatest part about the extension is that after you take your screencast, SnagIt allows you to save it to Google Drive in a folder called Tech Smith.  It even copies the link to your clipboard for you.

Then paste the link into a comment on the student's document and you're set.  Give it a whirl!