Lots of resources

ICTmagicI am going to say very little. ICTmagic is a UK educational site which has organised so many online classroom resources for you to look at. You need to go to the site and start looking! Plenty of choice and plenty of support for your classroom.

Triptico class trial

I have written about Triptico before  when I first discovered it because I thought it would be a good way to make more and better use of my interactive whiteboard. With technology you need options and choices which meet the needs of students and the day. I like a bit of a change and so do they. I downloaded the free version onto my MacBook and have created resources to test out the available options in the free version. I tried it first with my year 8s. We started with the find 10 because it was easy. They still had to think but it was not too hard. They loved it . I have a big class and they were all concentrating and interested. We moved on to Question/Answer. We did it using the  rows as  teams and they lit up. They were so enthusiastic and, at times, hurting their heads with learning. We allowed the option of cheating a bit with the mobile phone apps I recommended to them earlier this year. They loved that and the game started to lift as did the learning. It is not easy for year 8s to find questions to answers and that is what they are required to do. It was a great way to revise what we had been learning and to consolidate their learning. They wanted to change the rules. I asked them what rules they wanted and today ,when I played the Question /Answer game with them, I had another set of questions and we changed to their rules. They performed really well. Their French was really good and again, they wanted to modify the rules. It made them real partners in learning. I tried it with my year 9s too in a lesson which can often be a bit hard because it is at the end of the day. They loved the Find 10. We then played the Question /Answer according to the year 8 rules but I used it as a vocabulary tester. They did not like the rules. They, too, wanted their own rules . We tried it again with another set of words and the whole big class was totally switched on to learning. They thought it was cool and that it really made them learn. I noticed it brought a number of students out of themselves and they became more confident with their French. I shall use Triptico now for the rest of the term to see what happens. I am confident it will be a success and a set of tools which will help my students learn more effectively in an engaging way. I have found it very easy to make up my own resources and the one thing I can say is that it displays really well on the whiteboard. The colours are clear. The layout makes good use of the board and the very fact students feel confident enough to negotiate their terms of learning is a big plus for any learning resource. It means the students belong to the content and can see the value in learning and then want to work out better ways of learning. Triptico has tools suitable for all subjects. It is well thought out and the tools work!

Phone apps for teachers

acara appThe obvious app for Australian teachers is the ACARA app for our new national curriculum. Smart phones and tablets mean it is possible to carry a lot of information and useful resources in your pocket or bag. No more lugging heavy piles of books around. TeachThought has categorised 50 really good smartphone apps. TeachThought is also a site worth bookmarking because it comes up with so much useful and relevant information for teachers. Educational Apps also has some apps worth looking at too and has the focus towards younger children.

Easily search Google education resources

Google in education Google in Education is where you go for educational resources. The site is designed to cater to teachers, students and organisations. You can search the apps, You Tube, visual tools. It is set up so you can look for resources under specific headings which might fast track your being able to look for what you need. It can be done under subject areas, or tools or lesson planning materials. When you see it you will see that it has been set up functionally so that you are not trawling pages of materials, sites and resources. You can hone your search down quickly.

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