Hook ’em in: Using tech to build relationships ↩🎣️ 💙

Is there anything better than working with students? When you see the light go on? How full is your “bucket” after teacher appreciation week, last week? ☺ I certainly hope it is very full, and that your students sent you some love. We can take a look at education and talk about the variables that are beyond our control: kids are different today, families are different, standards are different, testing is different, technology is different, the administration is different, etc. However, what is not different is what is at the heart of education and that is relationships 👥 .  In relationships with students we as teachers make the choice and have complete control. We can choose to take on the difficult task of getting to know our students. I say difficult because often times we have to peel back the many layers of a youngster before getting to know him or her, and this takes time. Time is what we feel we don’t have, however, if you take the time it pays off during learning. It’s not always an easy world we live in, the demands of academia combined with social pressures and the internet fueling the fires 🔥, make it a difficult world for children to grow up in.  Many families are struggling and some of our kiddos are coming to school just holding it together. They need you, and not just as a teacher 💓. So, my focus this week is how technology can help build relationships with students.  What role can technology play in building warmth and trust with students? Well, read below to hear from a few of our very own on how they are doing just that! 

“Know ‘em so we can grow ‘em” 🌱

Google Classroom and Slides 

Tori Cameron, Grade 6 Teacher, says: During homeroom on google classroom I always have a question of the day. It can be about anything but usually has to do with timing during the school year. When I taught younger grades I used to have morning meeting and we always had a question of the day, so I wanted to keep up that kind of atmosphere in middle school. Throughout the year I have also given the students opportunities to create their own slides/videos on various topic to share with their class/friends.

Ginny McCarthy, Grade 6 Teacher, says: would turn the traditional sheets that ask them getting to know you questions to google slides where I could also use a program to show the students the results so they could tell who answered what. What is your favorite color etc… I also do big getting to know you poster. I was just thinking wouldn’t it be cool to scan them and create a digital presentation highlighting each child in the class! It could also run during Open House!

Laura McPhee, Grade 6 Teacher, says: I have them do an “all about me” Google Presentation at the beginning of the year.  They share them with the class so we can all get to know each other better.   I also do one myself.

These are GREAT Tori, Ginny, and Laura! I especially love how you combine the technology with a hands-on poster. Great blended learning!

💡 Idea: Start the year off with a Google Slides template you create about “getting to know you” and have students fill it in and personalize it. Sometimes having a template for them to fill in can be a bit easier for littles than a blank canvas
💡 Idea: The “Ask a question” feature is a great tool in Google Classroom that creates a blog-like atmosphere in a safe space. Consider using it, like Tori said, for a question of the day to get to know your class and they can get to know each other.  It also allows for practicing of typing skills!

Pear Deck 

Amy Ronayne, Gr. 8 ELA teacher, states: Although I don’t use technology explicitly to get to know students, it does allow me to understand them better. The biggest impact that technology has in my classroom is giving all students, especially the quiet students, a voice. Instead of me asking a question and hearing from the same 10 volunteers who always put their hands up, technology such as Pear Deck 🍐 and Google applications allow me to hear from all students. By using technology in brain breaks, I get to know students’ personalities much better (ex: use Pear Deck to draw your favorite food). 

I love this Amy! I agree Pear Deck is an awesome tool to hear from every student thus allowing us to know each learner a little better!

💡 Idea: Consider using a Pear Deck on the first day to get to know students, then you can share their answers with the class anonymously. This is a great activity that every student enjoys! I even have one made if you’d like to use it! Just reach out 🙂

Google Forms  

Bill Silva, HS Science Teacher, says: For my AP kids I do a google form to ask students questions about themselves and their interests.  I use this form to also collect book #, Email and other contact info.  This is always done in June of the previous year and allows me to communicate with them over the summer and assist them with their summer work. 

Awesome Bill! Google Forms is a GREAT tool to get to know our students, and also our families with the younger level.

💡 Idea: Consider sending out your “getting to know you survey” digitally via Google Form to parents if students are younger, or your students if they are old enough.  You can refer to it all year and it puts the data in a very nice, clean, spreadsheet!
💡Idea: Consider sending a “how do you feel about ______” Google Form at the beginning of the year. Ask students their strengths and weaknesses and have them reassess themselves throughout the year. Have it be anonymous and show them the data, and have them reflect on how they’ve grown. See my example here. 

Student Choice 

Joanne Cross, Gr. 3-6 Computer Teacher, states: When I do something like coding or computer animation with kids, it’s awesome to see some kids just excel at it. It may be a student who doesn’t necessarily have success academically but I can see some real coding/programming/animation talent in some kids. They just get it and make the connections necessary to work in these fields with computers. I talk about becoming animators or programmers later in life in my class all the time, especially with students who may not have found something that they shine at yet. I like that I am able to open new avenues for students to feel success and potentially build a career path as an adult.

Dan Parks, Gr. 7 Social Studies Teacher, says:  Kids have made videos for projects that show more of their personality than a written response can demonstrate. If I provide student choice in assignments/projects I see their strengths/likes based on the choices they make.

YES! I couldn’t agree more Joanne and Dan, and this is one of the key concepts in Universal Design for Learning! Simply giving students choice over their learning allows us to know them better and foster those relationships.

💡 Idea: Consider allowing students choose how to show mastery of a concept. Narrow down those choices with tools like Google Slides, iMovie, Animaker, Powtoon, Flipgrid, PAPER and PENCIL, hands-on projects, photos…etc!

SeeSaw/FlipGrid  

Maureen Holbrook, Spanish Teacher, states: When I use SeeSaw I usually ask students questions about themselves in connection with the material that we are learning.  Their responses are personal and unique.  I will always make a comment back to them based on what they say in the video/recording.  I respond to each recording – giving advice for improvement or simply commenting – letting them know I am reading/listening to what they have to say.  It is a personal response/interaction even though it’s through technology.  It is a way to connect with students using technology – their mode of communication 😊

Tori Cameron, Grade 6 Teacher, says:  Seesaw is great because the kids can comment and encourage each other. When I give the students opportunities to make videos, their personalities really flourish. 

Sarah Beberman, Grade 2 Teacher, states: Using an application such as FlipGrid not only takes some student barriers out of the equation but lets you hear the student “voice” that you hear in writing magnified. Their personalities shine and they think they’re mini-Youtubers.

💡 Idea: Consider trying out SeeSaw and/or FlipGrid. These are great tools to post prompts and see personalities shine! You can even share it with families. SeeSaw has a parent app as well to allow for a bit more privacy than FlipGrid, where a parent may see the entire Grid.

I’m here and ready to help you get some of these tech tools in place for next year! Let’s make a Google Form for the first week to send to parents and/or students. How about a “getting to know you” Google Slide activity or Pear Deck activity?! Let me know, I’m here and ready to “hook” you up!

Closing Thoughts 

As a parent, I care MOST about teachers loving my sons. My sons spend more time with their teachers during the week than me, so it’s important to me that they’re loved first. I can assist with academics at home (luckily), but I can’t replicate the relationship they form with their teachers, I can’t replicate that inspiration they provide or the curiosity they spark. There are so many great ways we can use technology to assist in getting to know our students! However, nothing compares to you sitting with them and taking the time to talk and truly get to know and love them. “The best teachers in the world connect on some personal level with their students.  They do not only know their students, but their students know them” (Couros, 2015).

💙

oFISHally Yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

 

“REEL-Y” Awesome Techie Teachers! 🎣 👨‍🏫 👩‍🏫

What an AWESOME week! 😍  This week was Community Tech Night in East Bridgewater. We had a great team volunteer their time to share our amazing tech use with the community. 💻 It was also the Digital Learning Day conference in Medfield this week as well. Five of our FABULOUS East Bridgewater Staff shared their knowledge with others from around the state! It was simply a great week in Ed. Tech. in EB.  Hence, the focus of my post is our AMAZING, Fabulous, Awesome staff! So, read below to see some AMAZING things your colleagues are doing!  It may give you a few new ideas. 🙂 Certainly reach out to them! I know from working with them personally, that they are always willing to help.

Community Tech Night 💻 

Community Tech Night in East Bridgewater was held on Tuesday evening.  Although it wasn’t as well attended as we had hoped, it was very well received by those in attendance. Bethany Barra, Nick Davis, Maureen Holbrook, Laura McPhee, Ginny McCarthy and Bill Silva shared their knowledge on various topics such as Hyperdocs, Google Classroom, Google Keep, Padlet, Readworks, Epic, SeeSaw, ReCap, YouTube, and more! The parents and school committee members in attendance were very impressed, as was I, with everything shared! THANK YOU so much to these fabulous teachers, and every staff member every day, willing to share their expertise! Check out the general resources below from the evening and reach out to the staff members listed if you want to know more about what they presented!

Medfield Digital Learning Day 📖

Tori Cameron, Jamie Hulke, Laura McPhee, Julia Sheehan and Erin Fisher presented at Medfield Digital Learning day this week. This is a great conference attended by over 100 schools, including schools from New Hampshire and Rhode Island!

Tori Cameron was inspired by 103.3 Amp Radio’s TJ show to start her own Podcast. He even MENTIONED HER on his radio show this week, and played some of her latest podcast episodes!  Tori presented at Medfield about Podcasting and hosting her own Podcast: Steam Up the Classroom. Check out her presentation here, it has some really great resources including great educational podcasts for kids!

Jamie Hulke and Julia Sheehan use so many great tech tools to engage their students in a truly blended learning environment. These two presented on Digital Discussion and showed all of their great tips and tricks when using tools such as FlipGrid, Instagram, Twitter Chats, Google Classroom, and even using Google Sheets as a Discussion Board – SO COOL! Check out their fabulous presentation here!

Laura McPhee presented Holy Organization Batman! In this amazing presentation, she highlights Google Keep, an incredible tool for student engagement, organization, and productivity.  The Google App is quickly blowing up and Laura’s presentation shows Keep’s full potential! Consider using this tool today and access Laura’s presentation here.

Would you like to present?

Consider sharing your knowledge with other teachers around the state! Our staff in East Bridgewater has so much to offer.  MASSCUE is currently accepting proposals for their annual fall conference. You can gather more information about this event by clicking here. Will you put in a proposal? Let me know, as a former presenter for the past 4 years I can assist you in forming your idea so it is accepted as a workshop.

Amazing Classroom Lessons this Week 🎒 

In addition to Tech Night and DLD, I also had the opportunity to assist in the most wonderful lessons this week with some fantastic teachers! Kim Hardiman, a first-grade teacher, had me come in this week to assist with a spectacular blended learning experience. Students researched a topic using a book bundle on Epic. Students took notes (on paper) from their research and created a Telling Brain Frame. From their notes, students then created a Google Slide on their topics to show their knowledge. THIS WAS ALL DONE IN FIRST GRADE – AMAZING! 

                      

It is always a pleasure going into Christine DiLorenzo’s room, a second-grade teacher.  This week, she wanted her students exploring a tool that will allow them to create animated presentations. We chose to look at Animaker. What a great way to demonstrate knowledge!

Stacy Linnehan, Language-based special education teacher at the middle school, is always looking for new tools to try! It is always a pleasure to go into her room and give her something new! Check out her students below, using Chromebooks to view the problems she provided and standing at the whiteboards to do their work. All of her students are working at their own pace, allowing her to walk around the room and check in with each student to give that personal connection.

         

Laura McPhee had me come in and we worked together with her students to make E-Books using Book Creator. This is a great site/app to create E-Books.  You can include video, text, images, audio and more in a really cool format. The book even turns a page! Her students are creating books to show examples of physical and chemical changes.

TPACK  

Technolgy, when combined with content and pedagogy (TPACK model), can make learning more accessible and more engaging for our students. Many of the ideas above demonstrate this model! Consider integrating the T with your content and pedagogy to reach our learners in this digital learning age!

East Bridgewater staff and students are nothing short of Amazing! Have a great April Vacation week everyone 💙💚💛🧡💜❤️

oFISHally Yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

The fish in MY school 😁 🐟 🏫

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again #togetherwearebetter!  Monday, 2/26, was our annual technology PD day here at the East Bridgewater Public Schools and so many of our own SHINED 🌞 ! Many teachers had the chance to show off what they’re doing with technology and share with colleagues. We had 32 sessions offered throughout the day with 21 of our own staff presenting!  It was a great day and so many ideas are already being put into practice.  If you check out our Twitter hashtag #greattobeaviking you can see many of the highlights of our technology integration.  Spreading the love, and best practices, is what it’s all about!  Check out just a few of the many great presentations below:

Google Classroom 📎 

Seriously, who doesn’t LOVE Google Classroom?! After out tech PD day, even administrators were inspired to use this GREAT tech tool! Principal Andrew Gentile has now started a Google Classroom for his staff where he is posting all sorts of great, important information! What a great use of Classroom and also modeling taking risks!  Bill Silva did an awesome job showing off Google Classroom and all it can do!   Check out Bill’s presentation below, he touches upon all of the great features of Classroom and how he uses it.

 

1:1 Chromebooks in Grades 1 & 2    💻

Have you wondered how our 1st and 2nd graders are using their 1:1 Chromebooks? Well Sarah Beberman and Kim Hardiman have a great presentation below that shows how they use 1:1 technology in their classrooms.  It is AMAZING and so impressive that some of our youngest students are doing so much with Chromebooks! Imagine what these kiddos will be able to do as they progress through our school system!

 

SeeSaw – A Digital Portfolio   🖼️

SeeSaw is a pretty awesome Digital Portfolio where students can post pictures, activities, videos and much, much more! Tori Cameron did a wonderful job presenting SeeSaw to many of our staff.  The next day, Joan McLaughlin was already using it and her students LOVED it! Way to go Tori, and way to go Joan!

iPads   📱

Have you wondered how our early grades are using iPads? Preschool, Kindergarten and half of first grade are 1:1 with iPads. Walk into Sandi Telless‘s room and you can easily see her students are pretty tech saavy on the iPads! Check our her slides below where she shares some of her favorite iPad apps she uses in her Kindergarten classroom:

Differentiating with Tech  🚀

Have you thought about how to differentiate with technology? Beth Barra does a great job running small groups and having activities at different levels for her students. The very next day I saw collaboration with the same Flipgrid topic in both Beth‘s room and Kim Hardiman‘s room. Nice job ladies! Check it out below:

These are only JUST A FEW of many great presentations.  If you would like to see them all be sure to visit our East Bridgewater Smart PD Site or reach out to me at Efisher@ebps.net. I cannot express enough how much I enjoyed planning, engaging, presenting, networking, and reflecting on this day! Thank you to all of those who were a part of it! It is truly GREAT to be a Viking!

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

Fishy Feedback 📝 🐟

 

Hello hello!

I hope this post finds you well. It has been a tremendous week here in EB. It was a pleasure to pass out the Chromebooks to our first 25 teachers willing to pilot 1:1 teacher devices!  Already, we have teachers using Screencastify with students and this is due to having a Chromebook – Amazing! It was great to get to interact, even for a short time, with some faces I don’t usually see. I hope to work with you further. Remember, I am here for your benefit – so please reach out! There is no task too small!

Shout out to a whole SLEW of teachers this week – EB and OTHERS:

CHROMEBOOK PILOT TEACHERS way to step outside the comfort zone for some of you and take a Chromebook! I know you’re doing to do great things! PLEASE use me as a resource! I’m here for you!

Julie Sunderland and Kathy Pittsley are high school math teachers at Fairhaven High School.  Julie also happens to be a very dear friend of mine for over 20 years! Julie happened to text me on a Saturday night “Hey have you heard of Pear Deck?”  Have I heard of Pear Deck?!!! 🍐 OMG! Well – next thing you know, I basically force her to come to my house on MLK day for a 2 hour tutorial of how to use Screencastify, the Pear-Deck add-on in Slides, Quickshare Screenshot extension, and Equatio.  THESE TWO TEACHERS ARE AMAZING! Julie – right off the bat – told me “treat me like I’m dumb” which she is NOT. However, often I think that’s what we fear others will think when we don’t know about a certain concept – which can be anything, not just technology. Let me tell you, this is NOT the case with me. Never, ever, do I think anyone is dumb. In fact, I LOVE showing a new piece of technology you may have never seen before.  Needless to say, these two amazing math teachers left with some great stuff – and they emailed this week to let me know it! Math teachers – these four tools make for a great combination in HS math – give me a shout out if you want to see!

Matt Savage I loved walking into your room and hearing Disney Music and seeing Pear Deck Vocabulary running! Woohoo! Boy did your students look engaged! Way to integrate Steve McGuire’s Disney Day!

Speaking of Steve McGuire, I heard Central School Preschool had a pretty awesome dance party this week! The kids loved it!

So much fun podcasting with Tori Cameron! Did you know she has her OWN podcast?! I was honored she asked me to be on it, thanks Tori! Check our her Podcast site: Steam Up The Classroom.  A certain Ross Clayton has been featured on the podcast as well!

Sarah Beberman Thank you for allowing me to start digital portfolios with a group of your second graders! Imagine what their portfolios will look like when they graduate? So cool!

Let’s see what tips and tricks I have this week that may help you out:

Technology in Central School Preschool 👦🏻🖥️👧🏾 

I’m so very lucky that my own children have been able to attend the Central School Preschool.  If you are a staff member in this district, you may want to look into this FANTASTIC preschool program. All three of my sons have been through, and this year we were lucky enough to have the amazing Mrs. Gorham for the third (and final 😥) year. I am also lucky enough that Mrs. Gorham and I have built a great relationship, so much so, that I can say to her “How about I come in and try Flipgrid with your students!”  This week I had the most wonderful opportunity to run the iPad center during center time AND use Flipgrid with PreK E.  Flipgrid was very successful, we asked each student “What is a farm?” and the responses were precious.  PreK E then watched every response on their smartboard and had a great time seeing one another on screen. I would love to share this with you, but due to the blog being public, I will not post it here. If you are interested in seeing this cute example of Flipgrid please reach out! However, here’s a cute slideshow of PreK E using their iPads this week! If you are a teacher who would like me to come in and run a technology center for you, I would be more than happy to do so! I can even create you a CUTE slideshow after the fact to share with parents.

 

Feedback in Writing 📝 

Providing meaningful feedback for student writing is a hot topic everywhere you turn! As educators, we want to provide feedback that will both engage and assist our students with the writing process, but it can be so very time-consuming.  Below are some great posts regarding digital feedback that may make it easier, engaging and more productive for you and your students!

This is a great post from Catlin Tucker (yes that is how you spell her name) regarding shortcuts in Docs. 😺 Catlin is a HUGE proponent of not bringing home grading! She was the keynote speaker at MASSCUE a few years ago…and let me tell you…AMAZING! Her post is worth a look.

http://catlintucker.com/2017/07/shortcuts-in-google-docs/

Anyone who knows me, knows I just LOVE the extension Screencastify! This great post from blogger Jake Miller highlights how he uses Screencastify to provide feedback on writing for students in his class. Imagine giving a student audio feedback while you correct a paper, so effective! We have many teachers here already using this great tool, check out another awesome way to use it!

Click here for Jake’s post: http://jakemiller.net/screencastify-for-feedback/

See the video below about how to use Screencastify:

Special Characters in Docs 😀 

Speaking of feedback – how about using some smiley faces or even a taco in your feedback?! Have you ever needed a certain character in a Doc? Well, thank you Ginny McCarthy for asking me this question – it will help so many.  Take a look below to see how to get certain characters easily and efficiently!  Examples include checkmarks, happy face, dogs, frogs, – pretty much anything! ✅😀🐶🐸🌮

 

I hope to see you soon! Imagine what we can do! 

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

I FISH you a Merry Christmas and SEA you next year 🎊 🎅🏻 🌊

I simply cannot believe we are upon another New Year! Looking back, 2017 was quite the year in terms of technology and all that we have achieved as a district. That is all a credit to YOU! It is amazing to look around and see ALL that teachers are doing to implement technology into their classrooms in some way.  Below I would just like to showcase some of what is going on in our buildings, as it is AMAZING! Check it out….you may just see your name. 😉

Google Sheets Timeline 

I taught a course this semester through PCEA/Worcester State, titled Teaching and Learning with Google Tools.  One of the assignments was creating Timelines with Google Sheets.  Lisa Grinkis, a middle school teacher, created a textbook-worthy timeline. Check it out below (or click this link for the actual Sheet), it is INCREDIBLE! She will now use this with students as an example and have them create their own. How cool is that?! This Timeline she created went above and beyond the expectation, and really shows off the versatility of Google Sheets!

Online Learning 

8th Grade Science is doing something SUPER AWESOMELY COOL right now! Kelly Hansen started using Schoology and set up an online, 3-week course, for her students that runs parallel to her current science curriculum. Megan Krugger is also using it!  In the transition from the old standards to the New Massachusetts Science Standards, Kelly’s 8th-grade group missed out on Cells. So how is she bridging the gap? Through an online module! In class, face-to-face, she’s covering the current 8th grade standards. BOOM! 2 for the price of one and BONUS – students don’t miss out on important concepts! The content and assignments are self-paced, and the students are interacting on the discussion board. The kids LOVE it and it’s a great way to cover content in a way that may reach other learning styles!

Padlet 

Padlet is an amazing tool. It is basically an online bulletin board that can house a collection of resources for a specific topic.  If you like posting links in Google Classroom, and find that you have many links around a certain topic, you may want to think about creating a PADLET to house the links, docs, videos and other items. This way, you can just link out to your PADLET in the future.  Check out these GREAT Padlets created by Laura McPhee and Tori Cameron on Plate Tectonics and a Snowflake Padlet by Beth Barra.  Jamie Hulke also uses Padlet to have students post BookSnaps, a great way to showcase student connections to literature!

2nd Grade Selfies! 

Is there anything better than a text from 2nd grade showing me how they’re changing their profile pictures to selfies of themselves? I love it! Thanks, Sarah Beberman!

 Math Songs – NumberRock

Thank you, Melissa Leonard, 3rd-grade teacher, for this cool YouTube channel NumberRock!  It has so many great math songs!  Check out the one below, and also check out the entire YouTube channel here!

I’m very much looking forward to the break, but even more, I look forward to working with you after the break! Book me here and I’d be happy to come chat about tech integration. Think of what we can do…Google Classroom, Making Video, Creating Video playlists, GoGuardian settings, Digital Portfolios, NEWSELA, Pear Deck…the list is endless!

Enjoy the break everyone!

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

Fishgiving 🐟 🦃

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

I am so very thankful to work with you, thankful to work in a great town with great kids, thankful for great bosses, thankful for all of the technology we have here, and thankful for all the support that’s given to me by you!  Thank you. I hope everyone has a great holiday weekend! It will be a crazy few weeks when we come back especially with all of the December holidays approaching!  Be on the lookout for Holiday Tech as I find it! I will compile it into a great list for you, separate from the Blog (but still featured here). Until then….I had some AWESOME appointments this week, here is some of the tech that came out of them! Thank you to the teachers and staff that had me come in. Special Shout Out to Melanie Lanni who booked me for document merge award certificates – I had so much fun with that!

Digital Assessment Made Easy  💻

I was booked this week for a great appointment to go over Go Formative! Go Formative is a digital assessment tool and can be used, similar to Pear Deck, in a live format or for online assessments (similar to Forms). This program now integrates with Google Classroom, making easier than ever to send out a digital assessment.  Every grade, aside from grade 10, will take an online MCAS this year. Formative has similar question styles to MCAS such as Multiple Select, Multiple Choice, Show your work (MATH!), and Short Answer.  Drum Roll….the best part….YOU CAN UPLOAD YOUR ALREADY EXISTING TEST AND JUST INSERT AN ANSWER KEY! No retyping or copying and pasting, and Formative generates great data and item analysis too!  This is a Super Tool for all types of assessments, including just daily check-ins! Check it out today!

 

Document Merge  📎

Thank you, Melanie, for booking me for this task this week! Document Merges are AWESOME! Picture creating hundreds of personalized documents, letters, or certificates for students with a single spreadsheet and template.  Check out the video below if interested!

Something COOL for your phone!   📲

This tech is for you (not really the kids)!  Recently, I upgraded my iPhone and now I get those super cool LIVE photos. I was a little behind with phone upgrades as you can see.  I had a bunch of Live photos and I really wanted to combine all of them into a mini-movie and have the photos run. Insert the AMAZING Google and the app Motion Stills which you can download to your iPhone. It’s very user-friendly and allows you to combine Live Photos into  GIFS or Mini-Movies.  Below is an example I made from my phone:

Video (Warning – it’s a bit annoying since the kids say “cheese” a million times)

#CHOOSEKIND Web Extension  😁

This is cute! The movie Wonder recently came out and it is based on one of the best children’s chapter books I’ve ever read! To promote the movie, the movie company released an extension. It will turn hate on social media to kind words. Take a look at the very brief video below to see!

MATH – PreK-12  🔢

This post (click here) from Richard Byrne includes a great rundown of resources to use in the classroom with Math. It has apps, youtube suggestions, lessons and more! It encompasses math from PreK to grade 12.

 That’s all I’m throwing out there for you! Enjoy!

oFISHally,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

Don’t get TIDE down 🐟 🌊

YAY for long weekends!  I could use a little extra sleep this weekend with the chilly weather coming in and three young boys adjusting to Daylight Savings Time, how bout you? As November is upon us, and we have disjointed weeks with Veteran’s day, Thanksgiving, and Central School Conferences, my calendar starts to slow down a bit. It seems we start to get tied down to all of the tasks that need to get done in this short month. However,  I would LOVE to see you, in your classroom, and show you how Peardeck runs (I’ll build you one), Flipgrid works (I’ll create the lesson), or any of the other great tech tools we have here in EB! Please check my calendar and book me to come in, even if it’s just to show off!

I have SO MUCH TO SHARE with you this week. Check it out below:

Nice work Science Teachers  🐸 🔬

Awesome job Megan Krugger and Kelly Hansen! These 8th-grade science teachers presented at the Massachusetts Association of Science Teachers annual conference last week on Debate in Science Education. They focused on GMOs, Fracking, and the Dakota Access Pipeline. It’s some pretty interesting stuff, with great lessons involved! I learned quite a bit just by reading through their presentation.  Take a look at the website they designed for the presentation, it’s very impressive! Click Here. 

Attitude of Gratitude HyperDoc  ❤  😊 ❤  😊

This is a great activity to modify and use with your students (click here), especially during this thankful time.  This HyperDoc asks people what they are grateful for.  Then, the answers are displayed in a word cloud or Padlet.   The creator of this HyperDoc linked Answer Gardens to each question. You could do the same, or link a Google Doc and share results with the class. The only issue I have with Answer Garden is you cannot tell who wrote what, leaving room for students to be inappropriate. If I were to modify this activity, I would link out to a Google Doc or Padlet where students can write their answers, allowing me to see who is writing what when I view the revision history.   If you’re interested in this activity, but would like assistance or the original modified into a format you can use, please book me today! I would be more than happy to put this into a format you can use!

Build a Turkey 🦃 🦃 🦃  🦃 🦃 🦃

If you want a fun activity where students use Google Slides to build a Turkey, click here! It’s very cute! This is inspired by Eric Curts “Build a Jack-o-Lantern” and created by @bethkingsley13

MORE FONTS for Google Docs 🔠    🔠

(taken from Eric Curt’s Blog post 800 Fantastic Fonts)

There are over 800 fonts you can use in Google Docs!  It’s very easy to add more fonts to your font choices. Check out this cool font below called Creepster:

You can preview all of the Google Fonts by going here: https://fonts.google.com/

Then, to add a font to your choices, in your own docs, simply choose your font menu and click add more fonts.

Enjoy this Ryan Gosselin SNL video about Fonts 🙂 HEHEHEHEHE!

Change your default font in Docs  😁  😁

WHAT?!! This is so simple, and I’ve been manually altering my font for years! Check out this great post from tech blogger Jake Miller.  You can see the whole post here, or view the GIF below to see how to change your default font in Google Docs. I’m a big fan of the Sniglet font myself 🙂

Pear Deck Add-on – EVEN MORE AMAZING (and easier) than the site!  🍐🍐

If you have been overwhelmed by Pear Deck in the past or found it cumbersome to create Decks then this post is for you! If you flat out LOVE Pear Deck, this post is also for you because it just got BETTER! Pear Deck has added an add-on for Google Slides. What this means is that now you can take ANY Slide presentation you already have, and add questions right to the slide. IT. IS. SO. GREAT. You can watch my video if you’d like, or you can read about it from Pear Deck by clicking here.  If you’d like to see what Pear Deck is all about, I will gladly create a Deck for you and come in and present it to the students so you can see how it works. Lisa Grinkis did that last week, and it worked very well! Please just book me for the time to create it, and then if needed, for the time to come in and use it with the children. Lisa felt comfortable presenting it herself since she is an avid user of Pear Deck!

Piktochart: Cool Infographic Site 🖼  🖼

Thank you, Megan Krugger for sending me this fun site to play with! If you’ve attended PD on infographics in the past, you may have seen Picktochart.  This site is free (although does have a “level up” paid option) and allows you to create some pretty cool infographics.  It has many templates, text boxes, images, “stickers,” graphics etc etc that you can use. It reminds me of sites like Shutterfly where you can REALLY get into making something. BEWARE, once you play with this, you are committed to HOURS of fun. I made an example below, which allowed for easy embedding (although large). This would be a great project for students to show their knowledge regarding a certain concept! Unlike Google Drawing (my app of choice), there are many templates that one can just insert information rather than start from scratch.

School Committee  🏫  🎒  🏫 🎒

Lastly, I had the wonderful opportunity to present and give an update regarding technology integration to the East Bridgewater School Committee on Thursday evening. You can check it out on EBCTV, if you’d like, and you can also access my presentation here.

 

I LOVE showing off the awesome things you do! Book me to come in today and see it!

Have a nice weekend everyone.

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

Don’t be afraid to MAKE WAVES 🌊 🐟 😃 💙 💛

Happy November Everyone!

I hope you’ve had a GREAT week!  I’ve seen some great tech this week in classrooms, including the Cardboard Challenge down at the Middle School! What a FANTASTIC week to be a Viking!  Check out some pretty cool tech integration below, and let me know if you want to “make some waves” in your classroom by trying some new tech tools! You can find my contact information in the “Contact” tab of the blog! Happy reading!

Google Maps adds Planets and Moons  🔭  🌕   🌏  🛰

Now, instead of just showing pictures of the planets, let the students travel there through Google Maps! This is really neat because you can zoom in, see craters, gasses, and features of every planet and moon that Google Maps has to offer. These are real photos of the planets and moons.  Read about this latest update from Google about this cool new feature of Maps (click here)! Play with Google Maps by clicking here.

Google Slides – Photo Slideshow Add-on  📸 ➕ 

Perfect timing Google! Just as I was gathering all of the MASSCUE photos, Google Slides came out with a new add-on that easily creates photo slideshows.  These slideshows are also EASILY embedded into Google Sites.  If you are one of the many wonderful teachers in our district who takes many pictures of students and wants a place to put them, this is a great option! See the how-to video below!

MASSCUE PHOTOS 2017  📷  

Thank you to everyone who sent me photos! I used the Google Add-On referenced above to create this slideshow. You need to click the right arrow, and then play button to get it started 🙂

 

ASSISTive tech tools: 2 new ones to try! 💡    💡

I tried a few new tools recommended by Eric Curts on his blog, this week. I found two of them to be pretty good.  Resoomer and Auto Highlight both assist in summarizing articles found on the web. Resoomer will cut the article down to the most important 30% (or so) of information and Auto Highlight will leave the article in its entirety, but highlight the most important points. Paired with a screen reader (like Select and Speak), these tools would greatly assist a nonreader in understanding grade level material.

Thank you for allowing me to be a small piece of your awesomeness!

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

 

 

Catch a Wave (of great tech!) 🌊 🐟 💻

I always love my job, and where I work, but this week has been one of the absolute best of my career.  The annual MASSCUE fall conference was this week and it was the 35th anniversary of this incredibly inspiring event.  Spending the two days with 27 Viking staff members, who are visionaries at what they do, filled my heart. Talking to teachers, technology directors, sped directors, and administrators from other districts while at this event left me feeling inspired and thankful to be in our district.  We are in an incredible time in education, and we are so fortunate to be in the place that we are.  YOU are so amazing, and when we talk to other districts – many are in awe of YOU. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of that.   

I will share some of our pictures of this event next week, but this week – I’ll highlight our presenters below as well as two other AWESOME tech tips! Enjoy!

MASSCUE   OMG WE SAW THE PATRIOTS!!!!   

The Masscue fall conference was a wonderful event once again. This conference is the LARGEST conference-style event that Gillette Stadium hosts. East Bridgewater brought a record 27 staff members to the conference this year! Anyone who expressed an interest in attending, via the Google Form, was sent to the conference. It was a great two days, with a record number of staff members presenting and representing East Bridgewater.

On Wednesday, we had our picture taken on the field! While waiting to return to the workshops upstairs, we were held in a waiting area with a security guard. The ENTIRE PATRIOTS TEAM walked by us, onto the field, 5 FEET AWAY! Tom Brady smiled and waved to us! Why do I tell you this you ask? Because maybe this little bonus will entice you to attend next year! When you attend MASSCUE, you leave feeling empowered, you leave with new ideas and you connect with others outside of East Bridgewater with a similar vision as you! It’s an amazing day, consider coming next year!

Consider presenting – if you present you get to attend both days! You all do AMAZING things in your classrooms and buildings, and others love seeing it. MASSCUE is entirely teachers, administrators and school staff, interested in using technology some way in their practices – they would love to see what you do.

Thank you, BETH BARRA for taking some great notes on Wednesday to share with staff. Beth teaches fourth grade and she has a few great tools in here that would work well for k-6 classrooms! Click here for this resource.

Check out our EB presentations below! There is some GREAT stuff from AWESOME teachers in here!

Amazing Add-ons and Extensions 

Richard Byrne, of Practical Ed Tech, posted an awesome document this week that features 25 Great Google Add-Ons for teachers. There are some great ones in here that include a list of canned comments you can choose from when grading writings through Google Classroom, a really cool Word Cloud add-on for Docs, and a rubric generator for Sheets.  Check out (click here) this great breakdown of 25 (newer) add-ons and extensions!

Make your DOC so it cannot be copied! WHAT?!  

I was reading my weekly email from Practical Ed Tech Blogger Richard Byrne this week. It was an awesome post which I referenced above. While I was reading an item he posted, I tried to copy and paste something from it and email to a colleague, referencing him of course.  Docs wouldn’t let me copy it! It wouldn’t let me “Make a Copy” of the Doc either (I could screenshot it though)! If you create a Doc, Slide, or any other G-Suite item, you can do this too!  I had to research this magic and it was one of those simple little things that were there ALL ALONG. If you present on a particular topic or create a resource document, I would consider doing this. We don’t want anyone taking your work and claiming it as one’s own.

See my screenshots below:

The message I received

 

Go to Advanced sharing:       

Check the box:

Thanks for reading! And THANK YOU EB – it’s truly GREAT TO BE A VIKING!

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟

You’re Amazing – it’s for SHORE 🐠 😅 🏖

This week I was honored to present at the SEAM BSU chapter meeting at Bridgewater State University. SEAM is the Student Education Association of Massachusetts and falls under the MTA and NEA.  I talked about each and every one of you to the group, and showed off tools you’re using in the classroom to educate students.  The SEAM group was mesmerized, eager, and astonished at all that you do. When we step away from our own roles for a minute and take a look at what we’re doing and what we’ve accomplished, it’s truly amazing.   It’s easy, especially at this time of year, to feel tired and heavy. Teaching in the classroom can be isolating. The weather is changing, we’re go go going with our own lives at home, juggling families and school, managing our own adult responsibilities, we’re also trying new standards, curriculums, tech tools, and getting new students (STILL)…but keep doing what you’re doing. YOU ARE AMAZING and it shows!  I wouldn’t be surprised if we get a record number of BSU student teachers in the spring, they were so impressed at all that you do!

Let’s take a look at some tools below to assist you in your amazingness:

Catch of the Day: Printing ALL student’s assignments from Google Classroom 😱

Thank you, Melissa Leonard, 3rd-grade teacher, for asking me this question.  I went on a hunt to find the answer! There is actually a few ways you could do this, but I found the option below to be the most user-friendly. It uses the app PDF Mergy. Take a look, if you need to combine multiple files, not just from Classroom, to print.

Screenshot Tools  🛠   

There are so many great ways to take partial area screenshots.  Take a look at this short video tutorial of my three favorite ways. This is great tech that will help teachers and staff of all grade levels! Please just remember copyright law and fair use law when screenshotting.

Google Form Add-ons  Image result for google forms   

So many of us use Google Forms! It is such a versatile tool, and the best part is that it is always improving!  Check out the article below from Richard Byrne for some cool add-ons to use with Forms that will make it even better for you!

Add-ons for Forms Click Here

Are you Certifiable?      

Have you ever been interested in becoming a Google Certified Educator? Wondering what that even means?  Once you become a Google Certified Educator, you have access to the Google Forum as well as many other resources available only to trainers. You get the updates on anything new before the general public. The best part of being a GCE is being part of the forum and being able to ask questions of other Google Educators.  You are listed in a database for those seeking trainers which can provide for other opportunities outside of the classroom.  Plus you get the nifty little badge to put on your email. If you would like to see what certification entails, to be endorsed by Google, see the link below from my fav. blogger Eric Curts.

Google Educator Checklist

Typito     

FREE video service.  Do you like making videos of your class using pictures and music? Do you find MovieMaker or the YouTube editor a bit difficult? Then you may want to try Typito.  Richard Byrne did a great video how-to on this resource. It’s free and allows for many options when editing including putting text across pictures.

First Grade Tech Image result for child    

First grade is now on iPads and Chromebooks – how exciting! They really enjoyed their first experience with KaHooT!

 

 

Have a great weekend everyone!

oFISHally yours,

Erin Fisher 🐟 🐟 🐟