Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Integrate Technology = Earn Badges

Our district's mission highlights five key words: Prepare, Engage, Educate, Empower, and Inspire. In order to help promote these valuable words as well as have a little fun, here is a challenge for the Talahi staff. If you can accomplish any of these tasks, I will place a "badge" on your door to show the students and staff that you care about aligning your technology instruction with the district mission. I will try to award badges to anyone that I see, but please let me know after you have finished a task. You can complete any one of the options within each category. Here are the challenges:


Participate in a Twitter chat for teachers
Create a class Google site, Facebook page, Twitter account
Attend an EdCamp or Unconference in Minneapolis, Burnsville or somewhere else.
Create your own blog to reflect on your practice.


Create a quiz on Kahoot or Plickers (I have laminated cards for you to use) 
Enhance your content with QR codes or Powtoon
Teach using Explain Everything, Educreations, or Showme

Make a digital book on Book Creator
Use Mobymax data to differentiate your instruction
Use iPads in small group reading instruction using ConnectEd or Storia
Create a class on ABC Mouse or Hooked on Phonics
Have students create a list on Word Wizard to teach spelling

Create a class blog on Kidblog
Code with your class beyond the Hour of Code
Make a podcast with your students
Have students create a presentation using Haiku Deck, Google Slides, etc.

Expand your classroom walls through Skype in the Classroom or Google's Connected Classrooms
-Connect with guest speaker
-Participate in a mystery skype
Take your class on a Virtual Field Trip
Use Aurasma to share student work at conferences
Use the Talahi Mobile Makerspace with your class

1. I will not be able to notice all of the amazing things you do with technology. Please let me know if you or someone you know has earned a badge.
2. The activities listed above are just suggestions. Teachers can earn badges for activities that would fit into the 5 categories. We don't have to be limited by the activities listed above. Just let me know if you think you or another teacher has earned a badge.


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Brain Breaks

Are you not yet sold on the importance of exercise for our students? Maybe you are sold but want some help explaining the importance to other teachers and parents. Watch this moving video and see what you can do to get students more exercise.

Dr. John J. Ratey from Harvard University has done extensive research on exercise and its impact on the brain. Students need to have quick breaks to reengage their brains. Along with more exercise, students need quick brain-breaks throughout the day. Exercise doesn't make you smarter, but it can help your brain to be more prepared to learn. Here are some fun sites that you can use to take brain breaks with your students.

GoNoodle is a site that let's you choose a "champion" monster. This monster will grow and develop as you and your class move and groove to their many different brain break videos.

Adventure to Fitness is another video-based brain break website. This site has more of an educational focus than some of the other brain break sites. It tries to build vocabulary while providing students with fun videos to watch. A limited, free subscription allows you access to 2 full 30 minute videos, mini videos, and supplemental activities.

Health-E-Tips has a large library of brain break videos for classes to use.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Air Server

Teachers, here's a short video on how to connect to Air Server in your classroom.

Air Server from Sam Court on Vimeo.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

AutoRap Vocabulary

After students have created a student-friendly definition, choose a student to record their definition using Autorap. Play the rap for your students to review the meaning of the word.

Autorap is simple to use. Simply speak into the microphone and Autorap will turn your words into a rap.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Videos on Animoto

One of the quickest ways to take classroom photos and turn them into an eye-catching video is through Animoto. We went to the St. John's Outdoor University today with 2nd grade. At the site, I took photos and videos. I had hoped to take more, but we were having too much fun on scavenger hunts and singing about the layers of a forest.

On the way home, I simply clicked on the photos and videos that I wanted to include in my Animoto app on my phone. I then chose a quick theme and music from their pre-loaded options. In just a few moments, our video was finished.

It was just a few clicks to share this with my teaching partners. I also love the ability to quickly share this with parents. If I were in the classroom, I could have sent the link out to parents using Precious Status or  Remind.

One big hint to creating an account is to sign up online so that you can do so through Animoto's education sign up. Just use a school email address, and you can get a free upgrade to their Animoto Plus account.

Animoto is also very user friendly so students could use their own videos and pictures to create a project of their own. The possibilities are endless.

Friday, August 29, 2014


The purpose of this blog will be to highlight some of the great work being done at Talahi Community School. As a STEM/Technology Integrationist, I will be mostly focusing on the work that I am able to witness through my co-teaching and coaching role.