A Few Websites to Checkout!

Here are a few great sites that I haven’t mentioned on my blog, but they are great resources for all teachers and people in education.

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The Teaching Channel is a great tool for videos that show teachers doing lessons.  The lessons are extremely helpful seeing them in real life classrooms, not just hearsay.  I personally love the Common Core lessons and new ideas to engage my students in meaningful, rigorous lessons/activities.  Plus, when you sign-up for updates, you’ll get a email with new videos that relate to you!

edudemic_weblogoEdudemic is another great site that includes many articles and updated daily with articles that show how to add more technology into your 21st Century classroom.  Get lost with this treasure trove of great resources.

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Teachers Pay Teachers has been around for a while now, but I never really looked into it.  This website is pretty AMAZING… I find so many resources created by teachers, and there are many FREE things on here that you can use right away.  There are many great things to buy on here, and you won’t have to re-create the wheel.  Have fun getting lost in resources on here…

Do you have any other sites you visit often?  Leave a comment to share yours!

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Gamestar Mechanic

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Gamestar Mechanic is simply a site for students to play, design, and share games.

This site is mainly geared toward 4th – 9th grade, but can be used for younger and older students!  You can register and start your students playing and designing their own games for FREE – or upgrade for $2 a student to full version.  My plan is to use this as an after school club or activity.  I registered and signed up tonight – Then, I started playing the games and was hooked!

The concept of this site is pretty simple – students will learn how to design and create video games.  Designing games builds:

  • Systems Thinking,
  • 21st Century Skills,
  • Creative Problem Solving,
  • Art and Aesthetics,
  • Writing and Storytelling,
  • and creates a motivation for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) learning.

This is from the “Getting Started with Gamestar Mechanic” PDF –

What Skills are Learned in Gamestar Mechanic?

Systems-Thinking: Students design and analyze dynamic systems, a characteristic activity in both the media and in science today.

Interdisciplinary Thinking: Students solve problems that require them to seek out and synthesize knowledge from different domains.They become intelligent and resourceful as they learn how to find and use information in meaningful ways.

User-Centered Design: Students act as socio-technical engineers, thinking about how people interact with systems and how systems shape both competitive and collaborative social interaction.-

Specialist Language: Students learn to use complex technical linguistic and symbolic elements from a variety of domains, at a variety of different levels, for a variety of different purposes.

Meta-Level Reflection: Students learn to explicate and defend their ideas, describe issues and interactions at a meta-level, create and test hypotheses, and reflect on the impact of their solutions on others.

Check out this very cool and fun way to have students learn the basics of video game design and computer programming – I mean what student doesn’t like or play video games?

Oswego City School District – Interactive Web Games

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This week’s Web Tool is Oswego City School District (New York) Interactive Web Games.  They have a bunch of Math Web Tools and Games to work on basic skills and more.  Here are a list of games/skills on there:

  • Addition and Subtraction of Smaller Numbers
  • Addition and Subtraction of Larger Numbers
  • Degrees of an Angle
  • Telling Time
  • Plotting Cordinates
  • Estimation
  • Number Sense
  • Fractions
  • Even/Odd Numbers
  • Basic Facts Practice
  • Percentages
  • Mathematical Reasoning
  • Sequence
  • Skip Counting

Another section there is the area to create/design your own games.  You can use the templates for any subject area.  This is great to generate reviews or have your students create their own interactive reviews.

The games were created by Mark Cogan and Primarygames.co.uk or Interactive Resources.

Kerpoof

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This week’s educational web tool is Kerpoof – http://www.kerpoof.com/

Kerpoof Studio is owned and run by The Walt Disney Company.  It has many great features and aspects that are for Pre-K – 12 students and classrooms.  This site has some really fun activities:

  • Make Animated Movies
  • Make Artwork
  • Make Printed Cards
  • Tell a Story
  • Make a Drawing
  • Spelling Games
  • Plus much more…

Another area that is truly beneficial for educators is their resource page – Kerpoof Teacher Resources.  It has lesson plans and ideas to implement this valuable web tool in your classroom.  Once you have signed up for your FREE account, you will then be able to add student accounts.  Then, your students can create and save their work in a sort of digital portfolio.  Once they have their accounts, they can also collaborate with other students in their class or across the globe.  They can give feedback and get feedback on their digital creations.  With CCSS (Common Core State Standards) coming, this web tool could become an essential part of those standards.

Get your class started on here and watch the students get excited to create digital stories and movies.  Have them re-tell a book or story you just read or have them design and develop a how-to video on a math concept.  The possibilities are endless!

 

Manga High – Math Games

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This week’s FREE Web Tool is Manga High – www.mangahigh.com.   This is a Math games site that ranges from K-12 concepts, but I feel about half the games are for 6th-8th Math.  They are fun-filled Flash games that students will love to play.  There are a couple of the them that are multi-player – Kids love to play against other kids from around the world!  My student’s favorite games is PEMDAS Blaster – it makes students practice their basic math facts in addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.

Another cool portion of Manga High is the teacher’s lessons and the Prodigi section of the website.  Prodigi can be used for math intervention and customized for students who need extra help with certain concepts.  The standards are aligned by state and country – I have my class setup for Common Core US Standards.

Here is a link to Get Started on Manga High and add student accounts – did I mention this is FREE – But, there is a paid version that has some more levels or features to some of the games.

Enjoy watching your kids have a blast reinforcing the much needed math facts mastery skills that they need!

Classroom Games

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This week’s FREE Web Tool is really a web site that has numerous games to use in any classroom K – 20!!  You heard that right, these tools/games can be used in Kindergarten – College and more.

Please check out – http://people.uncw.edu/ertzbergerj/msgames.htm

I heard about this site from a educational technology conference (FETC) I went to in Florida just over a week ago.  The creator of the games, Dr. Jeff Ertzberger, presented many games/utilities to use right away in the your classroom.  Many of them are customizable to fit your needs for any subject matter.  All the games and templates are based/programmed in Microsoft Office.

Here is a list of some of the games/utilities:

  • Word Scramble
  • Printable Game Boards
  • Bingo Game Card Generator
  • Jeopardy-like game
  • $100,000 Pyramd-like game
  • Racing Game
  • Wheel of Fortune-like game
  • Timers
  • Plus more

There are more games available for purchase – Premium Games, which also includes a book for $19.99.  Which is really is a great deal for all the games you can download and customize for your various needs.  These games can be used as a center activity, universal access, interactive whiteboard activity/center, review for a test, checking for understanding, etc.

With Common Core coming, you can also look at this as a way for students to “create” or “develop” (higher order thinking skills) there own games with the provided templates.  How powerful would it be to have your students make there own games to review key concepts and show their real mastery of the standards?

I hope you enjoy these great games!

TenMarks Math

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This week’s web tool is TenMarks Math.  This site is FREE and really easy to setup and use.  Once you have signed up and created your class list, then you are ready for your students to start working on assignments.  You can assign students specific skills/standards or you can assign a broad area subject.  This allows you to differentiate your instruction and their learning.  For example, if you have a student that is struggling with number sense and place value. You can assign the place value to the millions “track” for them to follow and accomplish.

My students really enjoy the assignments and find them challenging at times.  When they finish a track or assignment they want to keep going further and further.  Another great thing is the competition aspect, students want to get the most points for the week or most points overall.

Also, there is a game feature with the assignments.  When students finish a certain amount of assignments or tracks, it unlocks a game for them to play.  They want to earn their points and finish their tasks, just so they can play the games.

My class has also used Khan Academy this year.  This is very much like Khan Academy where it asks a question, and it will give them clues.  Then if they still don’t understand, they can watch the video attached to the standard or skill.  But, Khan Academy doesn’t have the gaming function, yet!

I think your students will be just like mine and want to keep earning points and playing games.  The best part is the students are learning and honing their math skills and they don’t even know it!