Monday, July 9, 2018

TypingClub's Typing Jungle Offers Hundreds of Typing Lessons

Disclosure: Typing Club is an advertiser on FreeTech4Teachers.com

TypingClub has been providing excellent typing instruction for many years. I've watched as the service grew from a simple practice site to a complete system that teaches students proper typing technique. The latest version of TypingClub features a program called Typing Jungle that provides more than 600 progressive lessons and activities.

TypingClub's Typing Jungle is designed to give students instruction and practice on using proper technique. TypingClub does this by providing direct instruction through short videos followed by guided practice activities. As you might expect, the lessons start with the basics using just a couple of keys then progresses through to complete use of the keyboard. TypingClub will track and keep students' progress so they don't have to start at the beginning every time they sign-in. Similarly, not every student needs to start at the beginning. Students can take a placement test to determine where they should start in the Typing Jungle series.

TypingClub's Typing Jungle has some customization options that students can apply. Those customization options include changing the font size, style, and color scheme. Students can also choose to have the letters of the keys read aloud while they type.


Typing Jungle isn't the only offering from TypingClub. TypingClub also offers Jungle Junior, Typing Basics, Left Hand-only, Right Hand-only, and story-based typing practice. Jungle Junior is designed specifically for Kindergarten and first grade students. Typing Basics is the classic version of Typing Club and is a little faster paced and slightly more traditional typing practice environment. Story-based typing practice is a novel approach to typing practice.

TypingClub's story-based typing practice presents typing practice as a story for students to write. The story will unfold as students type. They type the letters of that appear on the page. When they type correctly more of the story is revealed. Students are provided with feedback on their typing in the form of letters changing color when they type incorrectly. The story also pauses until they type the correct letters.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Math, Forms, and Images - The Week in Review

Good morning from Maine where the steamy weather has finally cooled off a bit. While it's still cool we're going on one of our favorite outings. We're going to the Maine Wildlife Park to feed the ducks and see the baby moose including this one that was befriended by a German Shepherd. Wherever you are this weekend, I hope that you get outside for some fun in the sun too.

Before my kids wake up and we head out the door, I have a run-down of this week's most popular posts to share. Take a look and see if your favorite made the list.

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. MathsLinks - A Good Place to Find Resources for Math Lessons
2. 82 Math in Real Life Lessons
3. PhET PowerPoint Add-in - Add Science & Math Simulations to Slides
4. NRICH - Another Good Place to Find Math Activities
5. 4-H STEM Lab - A Good Place to Find Hands-on STEM Activities for K-12
6. How to Use the New Google Forms Customization Options
7. How to Find Free Images to Use in Multimedia Projects

Please Say Hello to New Blog Sponsors
Advertising is one of the means through which this site is supported. This week I welcomed two new site sponsors, Typing Club and Kami. Typing Club offers a novel approach to typing instruction. Kami is a great tool for annotating PDFs and more.

Bring Me to Your School
My fall calendar is almost full! If you would like to bring me to your school for a professional development day, please get in touch. I offer professional development workshops on G Suite for Education, Teaching History With Technology, and many other topicsClick here to learn more or send an email to richardbyrne (at) freetech4teachers.com to book me today.

Book Me for Your Conference
I’ve given keynotes at conferences from Australia to Alaska for groups of all sizes from 50 to 2,000+. My keynotes focus on providing teachers and school administrators with practical ways to use technology to create better learning experiences for all students. I like to shine the light on others and so I often share examples of great work done by others as well as my own. Send an email to richardbyrne (at) freetech4teachers.com book me today.

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
Storyboard That is my go-to tool for creating storyboards.
MySimpleShow offers a great way to create animated videos for free.
University of Maryland Baltimore County offers a great program on instructional design.
PrepFactory offers a great place for students to prepare for SAT and ACT tests.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.

Friday, July 6, 2018

New Metaverse Tutorials - Build Your Own Augmented Reality Games

Over the last year Metaverse has become a popular tool for creating your own augmented reality games. Many teachers have used it to create digital breakout games. Like many other tools that quickly rise in popularity, Metaverse has made some changes to make it easier for new users to get started. To that end, this week Metaverse published sixteen new tutorial videos for beginners.

In the first playlist, Getting Started, you'll find everything you need to know to make your first augmented reality experience through the Metaverse platforms.


In the second playlist, More Features, you'll find tutorials for the advanced options available within Metaverse.

Share Flipgrid Topics Through Otus

Last month Flipgrid made the huge announcement that all features were going to be made available to all users for free. That opened up a bunch of new possibilities for using Flipgrid in your classroom. Now that Flipgrid is free for everyone to use, I think we'll see more people sharing creative ways to use it in their classrooms. I predict that we'll also start to see more ways to share Flipgrid grids and topics. Case in point, Otus recently published a video about how to share Flipgrid topics with students through the Otus LMS.


Monster Heart Medic - A Game for Learning About Heart Health

Monster Heart Medic is a free iPad app produced by the Lawrence Hall of Science with funding from the National Institutes of Health. The purpose of the app is to help students learn about the cardiovascular system through a game environment.

The basic premise of Monster Heart Medic is that students have to help a friendly monster named Ragnar live a healthier life. Throughout the game students conduct exams on Ragnar to monitor components of his health like blood pressure and cholesterol. Students also have to teach Ragnar how to take care of himself by making better food choices and exercising. In all there are 37 tasks called Health Fact Achievements that students need to complete in the game.


To successfully complete all of the Health Fact Achievements in Monster Heart Medic could require a few hours or more. I played Monster Heart Medic through the first few achievements this morning and that took about fifteen minutes. Part of the reason for that time is that the initial start-up of the app includes a lot of written directions for students. The reason it takes a while to move through each achievement is that the animations and simulations are detailed and truly designed to teach not just provide a review for students.

Monster Heart Medic was designed for elementary school students but middle school students could also learn a lot from playing the game.