Writing my way through the school year!

Posts tagged ‘SMART Exchange’

Environmentally-friendly lessons!

We just received new copiers. . Big ,big, heavy-duty copiers, meant to run off lots and lots of paper. I have come to the conclusion,  that teachers,mind you this opinion is  not based onany  research, use more paper than any other profession.  Between assessments, handouts, flyers, and the” 25 pages that were copied 2 sided/2 sided because someone forgot to clear the machine” or “the teacher who used it before you forgot to remove the pink paper,’ we waste a lot of paper!

That being said, I was so proud of myself when I created an environmentally friendly lesson.  As a matter of fact, more and more of my lessons are “green.”  I owe it all to my friend, technology.  I was teaching the skill making inferences and it  was almost completely green. First, my whole group lesson was  obtained from SMART exchange and was shared on the SMARTboard.  The students followed and interacted on the board, no paper. Next, they watched the video, “Miss Nelson is Back”, courtesy of Discovery Education’s United Streaming.  After viewing the movie, they completed the  “Organizing Inferences” sheet,that was  posted on Edmodo, turned in on Edmodo, graded on Edmodo, AND their grade was viewed on Edmodo. And as an icing on the cake, “Mrs.Nelson is Back” was  assessed using the quiz I obtained from United Streaming and typed onto Testmoz.com.  The quiz was  taken online, graded online,and the  scores were given to the students instantly! I tell you, how much more “green” could I get? 

More and more, because I have access to these tech tools, I have been moving away from the use of paper in my classroom ,and it’s a good thing. My students have begun suggesting lessons where I don’t require the use of paper. Our reading and math program have online assessments where the students’  grades can be accessed online.  I have created an answer key for assessments though, it’s always good to have a hard copy and some parents do not have Internet access at home. Our state testing program is online as well. I’ve found that being “green” is not only good for the environment, but it’s good for my classroom as well!

Smartbored? Never!

I recall years, and I mean years, ago when I was introduced to the Smartboard.  I was excited because this was a board you could touch and make things move! Wow!  First, we had portable Smartboards that were shared by the staff.  I was one of the few who was willing to drag it  into my room,  Eventually, we were able to get mounted Smartboards, and our principal awarded them to us based on the content of a 100 word  essay. That Smartboard is still mounted on my wall,  still waiting for the projector to be mounted, but I digress.

However,   I had come to the point, where, I believe, I was using the Smartboard  as a giant projector.  The past few weeks I’ve spent my time learning about all the cool features that Notebook 10 software has to offer, and I’ve fallen in love with my IWB again. I’m taking a class where I am learning about features of the Notebook 10 software that I didn’t know existed. How is it possible to have something for so long, yet know so little about it?

 Our facilitator is great, and the ideas that are being shared are amazing!  I am now at the point where I am creating lessons, even though I still take advantage of SMART Exchange, I mean why reinvent the wheel?   One of my homework assignments was to create a list of “Top 10 Cool Tools that I had learned about in this class. What a productive use of my time, all the cool tools have already been applied in my classroom.  I have taught them to my students, who are my willing guinea pigs.:) Today, I left my colleague glued to his computer, after sharing the wonders of the IWB.

My favorite new tool is the Random Word Generator. I inserted my students’ name in the generator, press “Generate” and Voila, it selects a student to read, come up to the board, etc…. My kids watch the board as it flicks through their names, “Pick me, pick me”, they chant softly. And when it lands on a name, they all call out the person’s name. It makes me laugh every time. 🙂

I know there are those who believe this is just another” tech tool”, but it’s not the tool, it’s what you do with it. I know what I do, I engage my students, and involve them in the learning process every day, using my SMARTboard.

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