Friday, April 19, 2013

Skype 'n Tell

Yesterday, I was fortunate to be able to witness a video conference at Handley Elementary. Mrs. Nuñez, a 5th grade teacher, coordinated an e-visit with Dr. Ana Sanchez, a microbiologist at Brock University in Canada. Dr. Sanchez chatted with the students about her research with infectious diseases and how she uses the scientific method of discovery every day!

The students were hooked, engaged, and asked great questions. I was so impressed, I just had to share! Major kudos to Mrs. Nuñez and her students for thinking outside the box! The kids will definitely remember this exciting day in 5th grade!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Engagement with Easiteach!

Today I had the extreme privledge of being invited into Mrs. Casiano's kindergarten class (at Sewell Elementary) to see the AMAZING ways that she is integrating technology, specifically the Easiteach software, into her lessons. When I say amazing, I mean auh-ma-zing!

As I witnessed the instruction and learning that was happening, I became more and more excited. (Have I mentioned what an EdTech nerd I am?) I just couldn't wait to share it with others.

Mrs. Casiano is a long-time user of the Easiteach program and classpad. A while back she had the idea of getting multiple wireless keyboards and mice to use with the software. This way her students could interact directly with the software while she facilitates the lesson with the classpad. She now has one for every 2-3 students or table in her room. 

Today she used the existing district curriculum (worksheets from ConnectEd) for the students to practice the vocabulary and spelling skills that they had been working on that week in kindergarten. Students took turns typing the words directly onto the worksheet using the wireless tools.

Talk about engagement! Every student was focused on helping label all of the objects in the worksheet. When one student became stuck or confused, another would be able provide immediate help from their wireless keyboard at their table.

Mrs. Casiano explained to me how using the Easiteach software this way has really changed the learning in her classroom. Even students who struggle academically or have communication problems will jump at the chance to interact with the Easiteach software using a keyboard or mouse.

I'm giving a <<virtual standing ovation>> to Mrs. Casiano for her innovative way of technology integration and teaching!!! WAY TO GO!!!

What could be more perfect than that?!? How about getting a drawing of myself and the students using the technology from a new sweet kindergarten friend?