Saturday, August 16, 2014

Chrome Tools for Struggling Readers

Struggling Readers My mind is a blur with the past two weeks of information. I have learned all kinds of school management systems, analyzing data, writing curriculum, and trying to figure it all out. Despite all of these unique trainings, one issue kept bubbling up. How can we help struggling readers? Struggling readers need more interaction with text, may need background knowledge ahead of time, and may need assistance with vocabulary. I have a few Chrome tools I feel could help:

Chrome Extensions:

 Google Dictionary: self -explanatory, except it is right the on your extensions bar

Save to Google Drive: Students come across helpful graphic organizers (such as those from Eduplace and can save those directly to their Google Drive.

Email this page: If students have email, they can simply click on this and email any page.

Note Anywhere - This is a floating sticky note system. Students can make post-its and review them at anytime. 

Buffer - This extension allows students to share content to almost any social media.

 Evernote Clearly - Remove any distractions from online texts, such as newspaper articles.

 Chrome Speak - Simply right click on any text on any site and this will read to you.

 And for videos - Turn off the Lights! Use this extension to darken everything except the video, which is helpful with often distracting YouTube video suggestions.

 Spritzer: A great extension that allows the reader to skim the text at a faster rate.

 Please feel free to add any tools you find helpful for struggling readers!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Commercials for Teaching

I love using commercials in the classroom. I came across these two and had to share my ideas:

This is a great commercial to use when teaching personification. Any of the latest Geico commercials would be great in a lesson for Idioms/Cliches.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Tom Barrett's Interesting Ways Presentations

Tom Barrett has created numerous helpful presentations for using tools (such as Wordle) in the classroom. Now, he has all of his presentations in one spot:


Monday, January 31, 2011

ELearning Tools for Schools and Learning

The Bright Ideas blog shared this mindmap of Web 2.0 tools used for various aspects of learning and education:

"Click on titles such as ‘communication’, ‘presentation’, ‘educational games’, ‘teacher resources’, and ‘mobile applications’ to find lists of online tools. Jesper has used Mindomo (online mapping and brainstorming software) to create this resource. What makes this mindmap so wonderful, is that Jesper updates it regularly!"

Here is the link to that map!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Neat Grammar Lesson

I received this email from M.Adamcik. Look at the many uses and contexts for the word "UP".

This two-letter word in English has more meanings than any other two-letter word, and that word is 'UP.' It is listed in the
dictionary as an [adv], [prep], [adj], [n] or [v].

It's easy to understand UP, meaning toward the sky
or at the top of the list, but when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake UP?

At a meeting, why does a topic come UP? Why do
we speak UP, and why are the
officers UP for
election and why is it UP to the secretary to
write UP a report?
We call UP our friends,
brighten UP a room, polish UP the
silver, warm UP the leftovers and clean UP the kitchen. We
lock UP the house and
fix UP the old car.

At other times this little word has real special
meaning. People stir UP trouble, line UP for tickets,
work UP an appetite, and think UP excuses.

To be dressed is one
thing but to be dressed UP is

And this UP is confusing: A
drain must be opened UP because it is stopped UP.

We open UP a store in the morning but we close it UP at
night. We seem to be pretty mixed UP about UP !

To be knowledgeable about the proper uses of UP,
look UP the word UP in the dictionary. In a desk-sized dictionary,
it takes UP almost 1/4 of the page and can
add UP to about
thirty definitions

If you are UP to it, you might try building UP a list of the many ways UP is used. It will take UP a lot of your time, but if you don't give UP, you may
wind UP with a hundred or more.

When it threatens to rain, we say it is
clouding UP . When the sun comes out
we say it is clearing UP.
When it rains, it soaks UP the
earth. When it does not rain for a while, things dry UP.

One could go on & on, but I'll wrap
it UP, for now time is UP !

Send this on to everyone you
look UP in your address
book..or's UP to you.

I'll shut UP

It would be neat to extend this by having students write something similar for other words in the English language that have multiple meanings. The teacher could create a list of words and (in groups) students could write something similar for their assigned term. Here is a list to help you get started:

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

More Video Ideas for Teaching Parodies

Teaching parodies is so much fun, and thanks to You tube, there is much material available. Here are just a few videos I would show:

Then show

Friday, January 21, 2011

More Ideas from @Learngamer

There is a scene in Inglourious Basterds where they are playing a card game. Each person has written something on the card, passed it to the person to the right and stuck it on his/her forehead. The person must guess what is written on the card.

I love the idea from @Learngamer for Human Sticky Notes. Students place sticky notes on their bodies and guess the terms. I thought about tweaking this two ways:

1. Have students in groups do something similar to the movie. Seated, students write one term (vocabulary, a character from a story, or a part of speech) on a sticky note. The student then passes the note to the person on the right and that person immediately sticks it on his/her head. They spend the time trying to figure out what is on their heads.

2. Have students place sticky notes on each others' backs with terms written on them. Students walk around the room, asking peers for clues as to what is on their back. Once the student figures out the term, they move it from their back to their front. The student with the most on the front wins.

The other idea I loved is the Basketball game. This is how I would tweak it:

Have students in groups complete a short worksheet (4-5 problems). Each group has a runner. The runner brings the worksheet (once completed) to the teacher. The teacher briefly checks it; if correct, the student can ball it up and shoot it. The student then gets another worksheet to do the same thing. The group with the most worksheets in the hoop wins. You could have two hoops, one designated as 2point and one for 3 point.

Thanks again @Learngamer for the inspiration and creative make learning so much fun!