Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Join Me Tomorrow for an Introduction to Using AR & VR in School

Thursday at 4pm ET I am hosting a Practical Ed Tech webinar all about using augmented reality and virtual reality in your classroom.

In Introduction to VR & AR in Your Classroom you'll learn the difference between AR and VR, how to find AR and VR experiences to use in your classroom, and how to make your won VR and AR experiences. We'll also take a look at some research on the effectiveness of using AR and VR in classrooms.

Click here to register for Introduction to VR & AR in Your Classroom. It will be recorded for those who register but cannot attend the live webinar. The recording will be sent to you within 12 hours of the live webinar's conclusion.

Quizalize Introduces New Differentiation Tools

Quizalize is an excellent platform through which you can create and distribute online quiz games. Your students can play the games as a group in your classroom much like Socrative or Kahoot. You can also have your students play the games at home. In fact, Quizalize offered the "play at home" option long before Kahoot did.

Earlier this year Quizalize added some features that gave you insight into how your students are doing on the games in realtime and after the game is over. Today, Quizalize introduced a new feature that builds upon those insights.

Quizalize now lets you give assignments and practice activities to students based upon how they performed during a quiz game. For example, you can specify that any student who answers less than 75% of the questions correctly has to watch a video or read a review sheet. This new differentiation feature isn't limited to just one score trigger. You can specify that students scoring 50-60% receive one type of review activity and students scoring 60-75% receive a different review activity.
Applications for Education
I think this new differentiation feature pushes Quizalize to the top of the heap in the category of quiz game platforms. Your students still get the fun of the review game and you get the benefit of the insights and the option to immediately provide your students with the kind of review materials that they need.

Microsoft Adds New OneNote and Teams Features for Teachers and Students

This week Microsoft announced a handful of new OneNote and Teams features. These new features were all developed for the purpose of improving collaboration and transparency.

Rubrics in Teams 
Back in February Microsoft acquired Chalkup. One of Chalkup's primary services was to provide a platform for creating, sharing, using rubrics to grade assignments online. Chalkup's capabilities are now found in Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams now lets use rubrics to grade assignments. Students can see the rubrics used for grading an assignment before and after completing an assignment. Read more about rubrics in Teams right here.

OneNote Class Notebook Page Locking
Page locking in OneNote Class Notebooks will let you lock an individual page within a notebook. You can also lock a page as read-only after giving a student feedback on a page. As usual, the location of these setting options varies between versions of OneNote Class Notebooks. You can find the directions for each supported version here.

Team Join Codes
In an effort to make it easier to have people join a team you can now share a join code. A similar feature is available in Google Classroom. That feature is quite popular and I think the Microsoft Teams join code feature will be popular too.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

PBS Kids Summer Adventure Math Lessons

Summer is here (in the Northern Hemisphere) but that doesn't mean that the learning has to stop. PBS Learning Media recently published set of resources designed to help you help the learning going throughout the summer.

PBS Kids Summer Adventure is a set of eight online and interactive activities designed to help kids ages 4-8 acquire and practice new math skills. Each activity should take roughly an hour to complete. All activities are aligned to national math standards as listed here.

PBS Kids Summer Adventure activities include online activities and hands-on physical activities. For example, the Sid the Science Kid Outdoor Adventure includes video segments for students to watch to learn about measurement as well as plans for taking kids outside to measure plants. The Wild Kratts Outdoor Adventure has students watch a couple of videos about animal habitats before making wildlife journals of their own.

If you're looking for more outdoor learning activities, take a look at my on-demand webinar titled 5 Ways to Blend Technology Into Outdoor Lessons

Theme Poem Lesson Plans and Interactive Module

Read Write Think is one of my all-time favorite resources for free language arts lesson plans and interactive activities. I've written about and published videos about many of RWT's interactive tools over the years. But somehow the Theme Poems interactive has escaped my attention until now.

RWT's Theme Poems interactive provides students with 32 pictures to use as the basis for writing short poems. To write a poem students launch the interactive then choose a theme. Within each of the five themes students will find related images. Once they choose an image students are prompted to write the words that come to mind as they look at the image. Students then create poems from those words. The finished product can be saved as a PDF and or emailed to a teacher from the RWT site.

Applications for Education
As mentioned above, every RWT interactive has related lesson plans. Visit the RWT Theme Poems interactive page to find a handful of lesson plans appropriate for use in K-5.