Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Get Kids Exercising With Fun Activities from Sworkit Kids

Sworkit Kids a new iOS and Android app designed to get kids moving with short, fun exercises. The app features workouts of five to thirty minutes in length (you pick the length). Each workout has a mix of fun exercises like diagonal hopping, crab walking, and hopping on one foot. You can choose exercises or let the app create a sequence of exercises for you.

Applications for Education
Sworkit Kids is obviously a great app for physical education classes, but it could be used in just about any classroom setting. Sworkit Kids could be a great app to use when you want to get your students moving for a few minutes in your classroom. After a long period of sitting, get your students stretching and moving with a five minute fun routine from Sworkit.

Click here for the Android version.
Click here for the iOS version.

DigiPuzzle - Fun Math, Spelling, and Typing Games for Kids

DigiPuzzle is a free site offering dozens of fun games for kids. The games are relatively simple exercises designed to help students practice skills in mathematics, typing, letter recognition, and spelling.

The mathematics section is the largest section of DigiPuzzle. In the math section your students will find games on counting, fractions, addition, subtraction, and multiplication.

The language section of DigiPuzzle offers games in which students practice recognizing the letters of the alphabet. In the same section you will find some basic spelling and word search games.

In the typing section of DigiPuzzle you can find six games that students can play to develop their typing skills. Three of the games include a virtual keyboard to use if a student plays the games on a table. My favorite of the typing games is photo typing puzzle. In that game students reveal a piece of a picture with each letter that they correctly type on their keyboards.

Applications for Education
None of these games are ground-breaking, but they are fun to play as a review activity. DigiPuzzle is the kind of website that you might want to keep bookmarked as a resource to use when you need a quick review activity for kids or when parents ask for an educational games website recommendation.

Dozens of Great PowerPoints for AP History Students & Teachers

As I've mentioned in the past, Tom Richey produces great instructional videos for students taking AP US History, World History, and Government courses. Recently, I learned that he's also publishing many of the PowerPoint presentations that appear in his videos. From his PowerPoint page you can download any of Tom's dozens of presentations on US History, European History, or World History. Tom also offers a couple of presentations on US Government.

Google Chrome users who have the Google Slides app installed can quickly open all of Tom's PowerPoints directly in their browsers then save the slides in their Google Drive accounts. People who don't use Chrome or Google Drive can simply download the original PowerPoint files from Tom's website.

Applications for Education
Slides without a voice aren't nearly as helpful as slides with a voice. That said, reviewing these PowerPoint files might help students recall a point that you've made in a lesson. Likewise, viewing the slides might help students recall something from a related reading assignment.

Getting Going With GAFE - An Online Course - Earn Three Graduate Credits

During the past summer over 100 teachers earned graduate credits and or professional development hours by participating in my online course Getting Going With GAFE (Google Apps for Education). Throughout the fall I've had requests to offer the course. Last week I got together with the fine folks at Midwest Teachers Institute and we scheduled another section of Getting Going With GAFE.

Getting Going With GAFE is a Practical Ed Tech five week webinar series designed for teachers and administrators who are new to using Google Apps for Education. In Getting Going With  GAFE you will learn everything you need to know to integrate Google Drive, Google Classroom, Google Calendar, and Google Sites into your practice.

Getting Going With GAFE costs $147. Three graduate credits are available for the course through my partnership Midwest Teachers Institute and Calumet College of St. Joseph. Graduate credits require an additional fee and completion of weekly assignments.

Course dates:
November 24, December 1, 8, 15, and 22nd. All classes meet at 7pm Eastern Time. All classes are recorded.

Course highlights:

  • Get to know Google Drive.
  • What makes Google Docs better than your old word processor.
  • Tips & tricks for getting the most out of Google Docs
  • The ins and outs of Google Slides.
  • Using Google Drive to store and share all of your digital creations (even those old files you made years ago in Word). 
  • Take control of your schedule with Google Calendar.
  • Using calendars to keep your students, their parents, and your colleagues informed about happenings in your classroom.
  • Using Google Calendar as a reservation system for parent-teacher conferences.
  • Google Sites As Your Online Hub
  • Create a website that students and their parents will want to visit.
  • Using Google Sites as a blog.
  • Designing and developing digital portfolios in Google Sites.
  • Using Google Sites for wiki projects.
  • Google Classroom to streamline your workflow. Organizing assignments for distribution.
  • Managing multiple classrooms from one place.
  • Giving feedback through Google Classroom.

What’s included? What does it cost?
Registration is $147 (subscribers to the Practical Ed Tech newsletter receive a discount code). Click here to register for the webinar series today.

The graduate credit option costs an additional $450. Click here to register for graduate credit.

Note: students pursuing the graduate credit option must register for the webinar series first, then complete the MTI graduate credit registration form.

Registration is not confirmed until payment has been received. Cancellations received less than 7 days prior to the start of the course will not be refunded. All live sessions are recorded.

The recordings are made available to all participants to stream and or download. Participants will receive digital handouts with directions for everything demonstrated in the webinars. Participants have access to a dedicated discussion forum to use throughout the course.

This sounds great! How do I register? What will I need to participate? 
The easiest and cheapest way to register is by completing the registration online with a credit card or PayPal.  To register for graduate credit, first complete the webinar series registration then complete the MTI form here. Purchase Orders and school checks will only be accepted if four or more people from the same district register together. The courses will be hosted through GoToTraining. To participate in the course you will need a laptop or desktop computer with an updated browser (Chrome or FireFox is ideal).

About the costs and my decision to advertise these opportunities on my blog:
Sometimes when I advertise one of these webinars I get messages from people who are upset that I am advertising it here and or that I am charging for it. I understand why some people feel that way. I thought long and hard about how to offer these opportunities. In fact, I thought about it and talked about it with trusted advisers for a year before offering the first webinar series last year. The purpose of this blog and my goal for years has always been to help people use free technology in their classrooms. The tools and strategies featured in my webinars and at the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp are free to use. However, my time for teaching isn't free. Further, I pay licensing fees to GoToTraining and to Wistia for hosting all of the media content of the courses.

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