Thursday, 28 February 2013

New Tech Love

This blog is going to be short and sweet. I discovered (through an article link posted on Twitter) an amazing word cloud website. We are reading James and the Giant Peach as a class so we made peach shaped word clouds with our thoughts on the book and character sketches. The peach shaped word clouds were a great hit with 3B. I can't wait to print them out and post them on our bulletin board! After showing one child how to save her word cloud she told me "We should call you Queen of Technology!" Kids say the darndest things! It made my day. Before I go, the site was Be sure to check it out if you haven't used it.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Today's Thoughts

Today's blog is going to be a rambling of thoughts.

Thought 1: Twitter: Let's start with my continued love for Twitter. Some of my students have been using Twitter to ask questions to other classrooms about their country for our research project. They seem to think it is neat seeing the responses. On a professional level Twitter is amazing. I participated in my first Twitter chat tonight with the #Edchat session. It was great seeing all of the ideas and thoughts come out on it. I found it hard to keep but up , in time, I think will catch on.

Thought 2: Another student discovery: I love when students discover things when using technology. One of my students discovered that if you clicked on a button on an iPad app that you could hear the national anthem on the iPad. This excitement spread like wildfire in the room as the students all got out their headphones to listen to the national anthem of the country they were learning. What a cool learning experience!

Thought 3: Plagiarism in Grade 3, really?: Today it came to my attention that a poem that one of my above average writers blogged is really from the book Diary of a Wimpy Kid. The way I found this out is quite interested. We are connecting with other classes by commenting on their blogs. One student from the class we are connecting with in Ontario commented on this student's  blog and said it was from Diary of a Wimpy Kid but that it was good. I immediately copied and pasted the poem into Google and sure enough it was from the book. This brought the question of where do I start with this teachable moment. Soon I realized that I would connect it  to our discussion on being digital citizens. We will review how we know that we can't copy word for word when researching in books or on the Internet and then I will jump into how responsible citizens don't post or claim other written work to be theirs. It should be an interesting discussion. Oddly enough the student who made the iPad app discovery is the same one who blogged the piece from Diary of a Wimpy Kid. 

That's enough rambling for now. More thoughts later!

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Where to Start?

I am having a hard time figuring out where to start. It is isn't like I haven't blogged before. I have used kidblog with my students for three years now. Also, I have been using some type of class website blog since I started teaching five years ago. I think this is just different as these are going to be my own thoughts and views on teaching out on the web and not what I am doing in the classroom. It is a scary thought that so many  people can see my thoughts and life out on the web or on the flip side  that nobody will read my  blog and it will have been a waste of time.  But, I guess if I don't jump into it whoever is reading this will stop.  So, here I go.

I have three loves and coincidentally they all start with a t: teaching, technology, and traveling. The first two will be the focus of my blogs. I am a Grade 3 teacher in Thompson, Manitoba. I love my job. There are great rewards that come with teaching students when incorporating my other favourite thing-technology. We love exploring and using technology to learn, reflect and assess in our classroom community know as 3B from now on. Our two favourite tools in 3B are Skype and kidblog. The students love connect to our classes through Skype and kidblog.  They love publishing their ideas on kidblog.  

In future blogs, I will share my favourite technology tools and adventures using them in 3B as well as share my views on technology in the classroom.