Thursday, October 5, 2017

Goosechase Scavenger Hunt

GoosechaseEdu is an app that combines the excitement of a scavenger hunt with mobile technology. Games consist of a series of missions that are completed by individuals or teams.

Once you create an account, you can opt to use games from the game library or you can design your own missions. Once your game is ready you will share the link with the participants. Participants need to download the app which works on both Android and iOS devices and have a Goosechase account. Points are earned for completing missions which requires participants to either submit a photo, answer with text, or check into a specified location. Missions might require participants to complete an action such as solving a math problem and uploading it or finding the area of the Louisiana Purchase and submit the correct answer. The game organizer sets a time limit and the team with the most points when time is up wins.

Applications for Education
Goosechase is great for team building for both students and adults. Since games are customizable, they can be used for introducing new material or reviewing for a test. Goosechase is good for field trips as well.

ClassFlow: Creating Interactive Digital Lessons

ClassFlow is a free lesson delivery application that is used by over 125,000 institutions around the world. It helps teachers design interactive and engaging lessons. Teachers can create lessons from scratch or find free and low cost lessons that are already made in the marketplace.

To get started, you will need to set up a free account. Then you will either set up new classes manually or import them from Google Classroom. ClassFlow has an app called ClassFlow Moments that is specifically designed to keep parents in the loop. As a teacher you have many options for what you can include in your classes including:
  • Interactive Whiteboard- Draw freehand or insert text and shapes.
  • Quick Poll- Select from eight types of questions including multiple choice, true/false, essay, and creative response.
  • New Lesson- Create one or more cards that contain text, pictures, and shapes.
  • New Activity- Categorize items, crossword puzzle, flashcards, labeling diagrams, matching, memory, sequencing, timelines, Venn diagrams, and word search.
  • Assessments- Build different types questions to check for understanding including, multiple choice, true/false, short answer, essay, and creative response.
You can learn more about ClassFlow by watching the overview below or by visiting their YouTube channel.

Applications for Education 
This entire app is designed to be used in classrooms and can be used with students at all grade levels. I think one potential benefit would be for teachers to use ClassFlow when they are not physically present in the classroom. Resources and activities could all be housed in one place, making it easy for students and substitute teachers to access. Like many things in a classroom, this would take practice and repetition to make sure students were comfortable with it.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Wanted! Guest Bloggers

It has been two years since I last hosted guest posts from teachers and principals so it's time that I do it again. This time I am going to run guest posts in the last two weeks of the month. In the past I've had some awesome guest bloggers share their knowledge and experience with us. If you would like to be a guest blogger please read on and complete the form below.

I'm looking for guest bloggers who can share current (2016/2017) experiences of using technology in their schools. Guest bloggers should be current classroom teachers, teacher-librarians, technology integration coaches, or school-level administrators. I would like to share stories of trying new things (apps, websites, strategies) and what you and your students learned from the experience. If you can tell the story in 500 words or less or with a video, that's a bonus. While I cannot pay you for your post, I will include links to your blog or website and include a short bio about you. Past guest bloggers have reported still getting traffic to their blogs more than a year after their posts appeared.

Please note that the last time I put out a call for guest bloggers, more than 100 people responded in 48 hours. I wish that I could publish all of the posts, but I simply cannot do that. I'll select 25 to 30 posts at the most. I will send notifications to accepted guest bloggers by October 11th.

Kahoot Launched a Paid Plan - What That Means for You

Kahoot launched a paid service yesterday. You might have seen some Tweets or Facebook posts about it and gotten concerned as did the folks who emailed me about it yesterday. The paid plan isn't going to have a direct impact on your teacher account.

The new Kahoot Plus plan is designed for corporate users who want to have their own branding on a game, who need a secured peer-to-peer sharing environment, and need advanced reporting options designed for business environments. In other words, not things that teachers generally request.

In the announcement that Kahoot made yesterday, the company reiterated its commitment to keeping the platform free and open to teachers and students. The announcement made it seem that the company hopes that Kahoot Plus accounts purchased by businesses will help with the goal of keeping Kahoot free for schools.

And in case you missed the announcement in September, Kahoot's mobile app now supports distributing games for students to play at home. Check it out.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Acquainted - Conversational Polling

Acquainted is a free tool for conducting online polls. Unlike other online polling tools, Acquainted is a conversational polling tool. What that means is that people who take your poll can get an instant response from your regarding their selections of poll options. Your responses are written into Acquainted and programmed to appear to poll respondents as they make answer choices. See how it works by taking my one question poll that appears here.

Applications for Education
Acquainted was designed for polling visitors to a website and would make a great addition to a classroom website. It could be used as a mini tutoring service when added to your classroom website. You could build a series of questions for your students to respond to and get feedback that is programmed by you. You could build responses that provide explanations of why an answer is correct or incorrect. Your responses might even include a link to further explanations.