Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Back to School with EpicPals!

Our Back to School, September EpicPals primary and intermediate collections are ready and waiting for you. 

Are you new to EpicPals? If so, head over to the #EpicPals page at the top of the blog for additional information to get you started!

Bobbi and I are excited to be bringing you #EpicPals for a 4th straight year! We'll continue to offer you a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts each month which can be read on Epic along with a coordinating Padlet board for each book!

The Good news and Bad news.....

Good News~  Padlet has some phenomenal updates which will allow your students to draw, take pictures, leave an audio or video post right in the app or online by simply clicking the 3 vertical dots on the sticky note!  We encourage you to share one or several of these new upgrades with your students to allow them to take more ownership of their posts. 

As always, 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 or leave a comment if comments are turned on. Being reflective and having an authentic reason to like something is a great first step towards leaving meaningful and authentic feedback. 

Bad News~ Last year the EpicPals primary board began to incorporate FlipGrid, unfortunately, with the changes Flipgrid implemented at the beginning of August, we will not be able to use Flipgrid with our youngers due to privacy upgrades which won't allow me to easily open the boards to anyone under 16. 

We 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

If you have questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to Bobbi or myself. You can find both of us on Twitter- @smalchow (primary boards) and @bhopteacher (intermediate boards)

Thursday, August 23, 2018

👩🏻‍💻 Welcome Back to Malchow's Tech Bytes 🚌

Malchow's Tech Bytes is back for year two!! I'm excited to continue this weekly newsletter and hope that you'll find it beneficial as you look for new tips, tricks and integration ideas.

Each week I'll post an image and link to the Tech Bytes slide deck here on the blog, as well as on my Twitter feed, @smalchow. You can also subscribe by filling out the Google form below and I'll send a link direct to your email each week. Most items will be suited to anyone, but on occasion there will be a resource specific to my district such as this week's network login posters.

Click on the image to view the slide with clickable links.

Interested in having Tech Bytes delivered right to your inbox?

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Heading Back to School with Seesaw

Hard to believe that the school year is once again just around the corner! Seems like every year around mid-August, teachers everywhere are saying those exact same words and every year summer seems to go by faster and faster!!! 

I've had a crazy busy summer, crazier than any other, which is why the blog has been dormant for the past few months! I'll be blogging about those experiences in the coming weeks. In the meantime though, my brain is beginning to make the switch to thinking about the beginning of the school year and I've been working on a few resources, with many more to come! 

I know some of you are already back in school so hopefully you will find these resources helpful as you start your year off!

Our district is now in our second year of Seesaw for Schools implementation and as such most of our students have been exposured to Seesaw. I wanted to find a way for students to jump back into Seesaw at the beginning of the year while reviewing the Seesaw tools in an engaging and meaningful way. The Seesaw challenge below is what I came up with. This challenge give students the opportunity to share a little about themselves, their summer vacation, goals they have for the year and more by using each of Seesaw's built-in tools. It also gives students a chance to go through the class feed and to leave comments for their peers. 
Here's the link to the template, bit.ly/SeesawStudentChallenge if you are interested in using it with your students. Once you click on the link, click on Use Template and it will be saved to your Google Drive and you can modify the challenge to fit your needs.

And here's one more...
I always did a "Find Someone Who..." activity at the beginning of the year with my first graders as a way for them to get up and get moving, practice their social skills, and get to know each other a bit better as well. If your classroom is 1:1 you may enjoy the Seesaw Activity below that I created. You can find this activity in the Seesaw Library or you can simply click the Save Activity button below to save this to your own activity library.

I hope you find one or both of these activities helpful as you begin the year!!