Monday, October 30, 2017

Ceating Rainbow Word templates in Pic Collage

Have you tried Seesaw's unbelievably awesome Activities feature? Since creating a boat-load of Rainbow word cards, literally 3 days before the Activities release, I've been pondering the best, and easiest way to share these words with students since Seesaw only allows one image to be drawn on at a time. I'm sure many of you introduce multiple words in a week and don't want to upload individual words so here's my work around... 

Pic Collage!

Creating templates is simple! Watch the video below to see how to do it so you can customize the templates you need for your students. If you are going to insert these templates into Seesaw, be sure to follow Step 6 by going into your Camera Roll and rotating your image to landscape view so your students will have more room to work on the template.

Need the Rainbow words files? Click here

Want to know how to download the files to your iPad from Google Drive? Click here

Sunday, October 29, 2017

How to get pictures from Google Drive to your iPad

Are you using the Rainbow Words templates from this post

Are you wondering how to get these images from Google Drive to your iPad camera roll? Watch this Clips video for easy directions.

Coming soon... how to use PicCollage to create your own customized weekly word lists!

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Check out Reactions on this months EpicPals

Click the image to access the November EpicPals doc

Our November #EpicPals primary and intermediate collections are ready and waiting for you. This month's primary board again includes a Read To Me Flipgrid selection. Flipgrid, coupled with a Read to Me book, is a great way to give your struggling readers the opportunity to participate in EpicPals independently! Of course, ANYONE can participate on the Flipgrid response and students don't have to use the Read to Me function for the book selection. Personalize the experience for your students how you see fit for their needs!!

Also new this month is the ability for students to like other students' posts on the Padlet boards. We have turned on the new Reactions feature this month. Encourage your students to read others' posts and if they like their post, have them click on the heart at the bottom of the sticky note. This is a fantastic way to lead students toward commenting- start with being reflective and having an authentic reason to like something so they can then move forward to explaining. 

We also encourage you to have conversations with your students on what constitutes a good post and how to be a good digital citizen when working online. You can find several resources to help you with these conversations on this previous blog post. My hope is to add the comment feature to our Padlets at some point this year as students' reading, writing, and reflective skills improve. More on that in the near future.

Without further ado, here is the link for November's EpicPals Google Doc with this month's books and QR codes/links to the Flipgrid and Padlet boards.

If you ever have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us. You can find both of us on Twitter- @smalchow (primary boards) and @bhopteacher (intermediate boards)
New to EpicPals and need some additional information? If so, head on over the the #EpicPals page at the top of the blog for additional information.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Malchow's Tech Bytes ~ October 30th

Parent- Teacher conferences coming up? There are a few resources you may find helpful this week.
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Sunday, October 22, 2017

Tech Bytes October 23-27

EdCamp GB is just around the corner! Not sure what an EdCamp is? Check out the video included in this issue of Tech Bytes. Hope to see you there!
Malchow's Tech Bytes~ October 23rd

Go Pack Go!!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Rainbow words the Seesaw way

My kiddos have always loved practicing their sight words using rainbow writing! This week I saw a post on Twitter where a class did their words on Seesaw using the drawing tool to create their rainbow words. 

I was inspired to play around with the idea and tweak it to make it work with our district's sight word list. I also played around with a format that I felt would work well for kindergartener's and 1st graders. 

I ended up creating two sets of words! One set is created with a "trace the dot" font on handwriting lines like you see on the right and the other set other set is done with a solid font on handwriting lines. You can choose what you prefer depending on the amount support your kiddos need or on your preference.

I also debated if I wanted to do each word like this for the entire year or if I wanted to work students towards being more independent, so I also created a blank handwriting line template that can be used with any words. 

I then uploaded these words as png images to my Google Drive where I can easily access them from Seesaw by clicking on:
Add file > Select from Google Drive > Choose the folder and the item and add to the class feed. 
When you add them to Seesaw the original Google file link shows up on the post. If you click on caption, you can delete that information and add whatever you'd like. I added a little note with simple directions.

I have these words organized into folders based on our district grade level expectations, but if you're interested, you're more than welcome to take a peek and make a copy to add to your own Drive of any of the file you'd like for your own use! I have the first 3 lists done which are kindergarten and 1st grade words. I'll be adding on to these in the near future, so feel free to check back for additional resources. Here is the link to get to the folder that has both the trace the dot font and solid font words as well as a blank handwriting image like you see above.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Seesaw Task Cards

Seesaw Task Cards
Have you seen these awesome Seesaw Task cards that were created by Seesaw Ambassador, Becky Barrett? She has cards for Read to Self, Work on Writing, Listen to Reading with Epic Books and a couple of math task cards.

These can be a great way to add accountability to your Daily 5 stations. If you decide to use these, be sure to click File > Make a Copy. She has included images on the last slide so that you can also make your own task cards! Thanks Becky for sharing!!!

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Tech or Treat?!

Tech or Treat! This week's treat includes several resources for Halloween that you may find useful as you begin your planning. 
Also, if you are a 3rd-5th grade teacher who is using Seesaw, I highly encourage you to register and take part in the Digital Citizenship webinar that is linked in this newsletter.

Malchow's Tech Bytes

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Digital Citizenship- EVERY day

Have you started talking about Digital Citizenship with your students yet? Although some may say that they will cover it at a certain point in the year and that the topic is part of their grade level curriculum, it's my opinion, that this topic is a LIFE SKILL and one that we need to cover in our classrooms DAILY

 Digital Citizenship Posters by Krystal Plott
Digital Citizenship posters byKrystal Platt~
Click image for others
I'm not saying we need to prepare a formal 30 minute lesson each and every day, but rather, review proper digital etiquette, or Netiquette as it is also called. In today's day and age, this is critical and can be as simple as reminder on what types of items are ok to post on our Seesaw accounts, to how we leave appropriate comments for our classmates on Seesaw or on social media, to how we utilize shared devices in a respectful and responsible way. 

I had several foundational conversations with first graders this week. As we began learning how to use PicCollage, we talked about they would see others' creations when they opened the app, but being the respectful digital citizens that we are, that we know we shouldn't open another person's work and change it or delete it. We had a similar conversation when we started using Epic Books and how we needed to go into our own accounts and not a classmates. We also talked about what to do if we accidentally went into somebody else's profile and want to do if the person who was on last didn't log themselves out. Neither of these conversations were earth shattering neither took more than 5 minutes but both were important in helping to lay the foundation for these students for this year and years to come. 

With that being said, here is this week's Tech Bytes newsletter with various ideas and resources to help you get started with Digital Citizenship conversations in your classroom and a great article by Heather Mars, "Don't teach digital citizenship, Embed it!" that I encourage you to read and reflect on.
Malchow's Tech Bytes

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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Moderated Padlet for Responses

We've all been there... somebody asks you to share a goal or an idea and although you have one, you're a bit nervous to share knowing that others will hear your crazy idea and judge you, or worse, you may have to admit to your weaknesses that are holding you back from attaining those goals. None of us wants to admit our weaknesses, yet we all want to grow and learn. It's such a double edged sword! In my position, it's hard for me to help others learn and grow if I don't know how I can help. I also don't consider these weaknesses, but rather our starting point. We all are in different places with our comfort in using technology and I simply want everyone to take a step further, a little out of their comfort zone, to try something new and let the magic happen

This past week I spent some time talking about global collaboration opportunities with the teachers in both of my buildings, a topic that can often strike terror in the eyes of teachers wondering how in the world they'll know HOW to connect with Google Hangout or WHERE in the world do I find classes to connect with, or WHAT happens if.... you get the idea.

After providing some of the answers on "the what" and "the who", I wanted teachers to share a goal they had for themselves this year based on something that piqued their interest from our discussion. That was simple enough, but I also wanted them to share how I could support them in achieving that goal. I wanted teachers to be brutally honest with me so I could best help them achieve those goals, but I didn't want anyone hitting the panic button because they were apprehensive about others seeing what they wrote. For my purposes, I also wanted to have this information in a place that I could access it throughout the year so I can continue to check in and work towards helping with these goals but I needed a private platform. Post-it notes wouldn't work, I'd lose them, they'd get ripped or lose their sticky. Email? Too many to keep track of- I want everything in one place and organized. And- I wanted to utilize technology so I could model a practical application as well as have the benefits of easy access from anywhere. Not too many considerations, right?!

What I ended up doing was creating a Padlet board that everyone could access with my unique link and with the posts set for me to moderate. In this way everyone was able to quickly get to the board, easily create their "sticky note" BUT not see others' posts. On the smartboard I displayed a screenshot of my empty board along with the link. I did not click over to the actual Padlet board during this activity as teachers would be able to see the unmoderated posts coming through since I am always logged into Padlet. Once my meetings were over, I went back into the settings for my Padlet board and changed the  board to private so at this point it is only accessible by me. I then approved the posts and rearranged them in order of priority. I now have easy access to the goals teachers chose and I can add notes to their posts as well. This really worked well and gave everyone a level of privacy. 

(Names as well as the areas teachers felt they needed help with have been removed from the sample screenshot above to maintain the privacy I wanted teachers to have)

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Malchow's Tech Bytes- Oct 2nd

Are you participating in the Global Read Aloud this month? If so, have you seen the new BreakoutEdu games that go along with the books? Something to definitely check out this week!
Malchow's Tech Bytes