Friday Photo: Better than Yesterday

Mar 6, 2015 by

Sometimes we get so caught up in whether or not we can be the best that we forget the most important thing. . .to start.  It’s okay if you’re not the best or you don’t know it all.  Just start with one thing today, and be better than you were yesterday.

BetterThanYesterday

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Spring Break

Mar 2, 2015 by

Last Backpack will be taking a short break to enjoy the spring.  Remember, flowers are on the way… eventually… Posts will resume on March 9, 2015.  If this week is your Spring Break have a restful and enjoyable week and, even if you have to wait a little longer for your break, have a wonderful week anyway!

SpringTulips

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Friday Photo: Want to see a band?

Feb 27, 2015 by

1023_gig

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Aworded

Feb 26, 2015 by

AwordedAworded is like Scrabble for the 21st Century.  Students use letters to make words and they can play against a peer in their class, in a neighboring class, or against the app.  Students are challenged to think of words that they can create with the limited letters, forcing them to search their lexicon.  Create a new twist on learning vocabulary or spelling words by adding the points and competition and students may be thrilled to practice their new words. Students can keep separate score and earn classroom points if they are able to use all of their spelling or vocabulary words in a single game.

 

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Science Today

Feb 25, 2015 by

ScienceTodayScience Today is a channel for the California Academy of Sciences to share research, videos and photos on cutting-edge technologies, Earth, life, space, and more.  Science Today has high-quality videos, images, and articles from expert researchers.  Users can filter by science subject and media type or scroll through the articles until a picture or title catches your interest.

Students can use the Science Today app to find current research that is interesting to them and then practice writing while blogging about what they learned.

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NoRedInk

Feb 24, 2015 by

NoRedInkWriting is a subject that is notoriously difficult for many students.  NoRedInk is a fun way for kids to work on their grammar and writing skills and get immediate feedback and support.  Teachers sign up and create a class that students join using a class code.  Then, teachers can assess students and assign activities that will help students improve their grammar and writing.  Teachers can also create quizzes for students and track their progress allowing for personalized support for each student’s struggle point.

Students can create profiles with their interests so that their writing activities are centered around topics that are engaging and relevant.  Students spend a great deal of time on informal writing with 21st Century tools at their fingertips and they have a lot of great ideas.  NoRedInk will help them share those ideas while improving their formal writing.

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Monday Musing: Digital Learning Day

Feb 23, 2015 by

“Digital Learning is any instructional practice that effectively uses technology to strengthen a student’s learning experience.”

Digital Learning DayDigital Learning Day was founded in 2012 to celebrate innovation and spread the word about all the great things happening in technology enhanced classrooms.  Students are preparing for jobs that don’t yet exist by engaging with the tools of the 21st Century.  Digital Learning experiences can be anything from an online activity, a mobile app, on online or hybrid course or a flipped classroom.

How do you participate?

Teachers can participate in Digital Learning Day by sharing great lessons or activities that they do with their students by posting on the Digital Learning Day website.  Not sure what to do?  Don’t worry, the Digital Learning Day website has plenty of ideas and resources that you can use or adapt for your classroom.  Try a Kahoot with your class, make a lesson with Blendspace, or make learning visible with a digital portfolio with Three Ring or Wix.

No matter what you try, be sure to share by tweeting with the hashtag #DLDay AND . . .

 

Please keep sharing your Success Stories!

 

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Friday Photo: Happy Lunar New Year

Feb 20, 2015 by

Happy Lunar New Year 2015!  Welcome to the Year of the Goat… or is it the Sheep?  Read this link to find out…

Hmmmm…. either way, enjoy your weekend, everyone!

Lunar New Year

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Pixel and Parker

Feb 19, 2015 by

PixelParkerPixel and Parker is an app that is part board game and part storybook.  The app is an interactive story so readers can “spin” to determine what happens next.  The Pixel and Parker app has 30 different surprises along the way and 30 different t-shirts that readers can win as they play. . .read.  The app keeps students engaged and coming back for more with all of the different possibilities for how the story will go each time they read it.  The Pixel and Parker app is a new twist on the “Choose Your Own Adventure” stories from years ago.

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Elevate

Feb 18, 2015 by

ElevateElevate is an app that helps users develop math skills, memory, focus, processing speed and much more.  Each user gets a personalized training profile to help them work on the skills that they need.  The app will create a training calendar and has tracking for users to monitor progress as they play games and build skills.  Elevate also has reminders and gradually increases in difficulty so users keep growing.  This engaging, game-based app would be great for students who need a little help with focus, memory, processing speed or one of the other skills available.

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