Archive for Technology + Education

Resource Round-up: Spelling City!

This might be one of my favorite tools to use. I know it might not be something a day-to-day sub will use frequently, but trust me — this site will come in handy.

Spelling City allows teachers to upload weekly spelling lists — Awesome, I know! — for free!!!

1. this allows parents/students quick access to words at home
2. this creates a wonderful opportunity for independent practice
3. this website can be used for a center activity
4. this gives no excuses for students who “forgot their list at school”
5. this provides games at your fingertips (which you did not have to create!)
6. this gives substitutes an easy way to create a spelling/language arts center

Let me explain:

Once you have registered at Spelling City’s site, simply upload the words into a list — easy!

Then students have the ability to access this list using your username that you provide. (My students could search under the username missnmiller)

[[Your homepage not only includes the list of words, but can link to fun sites to practice math skills, learn language arts skills, & practice writing! It also provides you with space to write a message to students & parents]]

SS TIP: I found that labeling the list by week is the most helpful!

Students then have opportunities to learn, practice, & take a test! *audio required. The learn tab reads the word & spells it aloud for the student, including it in a sentence for understanding. The practice tab provides cool games, such as hang mouse [like hang man] & unscrambling games to help students retain the spellings.

Below is a nice instructional video for a quick overview & howtos for SpellingCity. Some of the features included [vocabulary & print outs are available only with the premium membership]

So if you’re caught in a bind & need a quick activity or center, the list only takes minutes to type [but I would suggest signing up now —  it’s free] OR if you’re in a more permanent teaching position & are looking to spice up spelling, this site is perfect for just that!

happy spelling!

miss miller

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De.lic.ious

Delicious.com makes staying connected — a treat!

All puns aside, this site is seriously a treasure chest of online gold for teachers!  Are you in the know about delicious.com?

Delicious is an online bookmarking site that allows you to post and find a plethora of websites based on tags or searches. It is like a revved up, personal google that allows you to keep track of all of your favorite websites and have them on hand, regardless if you are on your home computer or not.

Subbing one day and like a site the teacher is using? Go to a conference & learn about a new online resource? Instead of keeping post-it notes and scattered handouts — use delicious as a warehouse for all of those great websites!

What is even better about Delicious is that you can create a list of favorites for your students! Instead of sending home a bulky url, [you know the 54 character ones that include numbers, dashes, slashes, and periods] give a simple link: www.delicious.com/miss.miller

WOW! In seconds your students can access ALL of your favorites websites!

Teaching a lesson on multiplication? Need practice websites for the kiddos to access? Consider it done with delicious.

Each site is tagged & given a brief description. Students can quickly find those sites by searching for the topic or clicking on the tag of “math” “multiplication” or “games.”

Think it couldn’t get better? It does!

To the right of every website title, you see a number in a box. With one click, you can see all of the other members who have posted this site. By clicking on to their homepage, you can stumble upon other great websites to add to your bookmarks for future use!

Looking for a fun lesson idea? Need an online game to help with spelling? Search & you will find!

Getting set up with delicious is very simple, requiring only a yahoo account. Go to the homepage, delicious.com & click the green, join now, button & you’re set to go!

 happy bookmarking!

miss miller

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Twitter for Teachers

I’ll be the first to admit that I was a huge Twitter skeptic.

“No, I don’t want to read that you are running to the mall at 2:37 pm or that you’re making lasagna for dinner. I’ll keep my nose in my own business, thank you.”

I maintained this stand-offish attitude until I found out what a wonderful resource it could be — especially for teachers!

After attending a workshop on technology + education, I was inspired to start a twitter account to get instant updates on the ever-changing world of teaching. Similar to that of facebook, Twitter works by updating your homepage with “tweets” or 140 character messages that operate like a headline of a newspaper & then link to a more detailed site.

When signing into my account, I am welcomed by messages from Discovery Education Network, Ed.gov, USNews Education, Education Week, as well as teachers who have their own personal news to share! On one site, I have access to hundreds of messages, updated frequently, giving me links to all kinds of resources — songs for the classroom, webinars to attend, freebies for teachers, changes in policy…

I knew I was in love when I was finding free online webinars & professional development to sign up for — such as Discovery Education’s Fifth Annual Stream-a-thon that is being held tomorrow on integrating digital technology into curriculum!

When used in this manner, Twitter can really be a one stop shop for being up to date & in the know!

Want to know how you, too, can become connected via Twitter? 

  • Visit Twitter.com & Sign up! It is fast & easy, just follow the steps listed at the top right corner
  • Find & Follow other teachers & educational resources by searching for education, news, or by searching for other teachers. Twitter4 Teachers is constantly being updated with new accounts!
  • Check it frequently! Make a habit of checking it daily to stay in the loop!
  • Post with your news & update those who are following you!
  • Use appropriately: Remember, like all things online, every post or comment is a representation and a reflection of who you are.

Now this is merely the beginning of utilizing this online tool. Twitter boasts a very thorough Help Center that can answer more specific questions and broaden your knowledge of the tricks & tips for successful useage.

Happy Tweeting!

miss miller

Follow me on twitter @missnmiller!

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