Are you wanting to incorporate technology in the classroom more? I’m excited to show you a few ways I’ve used technology in my classroom. One year, I was lucky enough to have a Promethean board, but don’t worry, there are many ways to use technology with your students without needed a smart board of any kind. I think technology integrated into learning helps students stay much more engaged. Read on for 8 ideas to implement into your classroom and grab a FREEBIE!1. Fluency & Fitness: If you’ve followed me for any amount of time, you know about my Fluency & Fitness® resources. They are slide shows that project words/numbers/math facts, etc onto your wall for students to read or say the answer to. Every so often, there is an exercise screen to get students up and moving! Teachers get to control how fast or slow they click to go to the next slide. At the beginning of the year, I went slower as students learned the skills, and then faster once they were mastering them! They loved trying to do the skills before I could click to the next slide. You don’t need a smart board to play, simply a computer and projector. Due to the popularity of this resource, I now have over 70 skills for grade PreK -5th grade.
Here’s a sneak peek at some Fluency & Fitness® in action:
2. Seesaw: My friend Mary-Kate uses Seesaw in her classroom, which is a digital portfolio where students can share their work and teachers can check it later. No more dragging papers home! Teachers can use pre-made activities or create their own. Students are able to write, draw, add notes, recordings, etc. to show their learning. Seesaw is also nice because parents can have access to see their child’s work and teachers can leave comments on the work for parents to see.3. iPad Games: Another way I liked to incorporate technology in the classroom was by letting my students use our iPads during center time. The games were organized into folders by Reading or Math, so students only played the appropriate games depending on whether it was literacy center or math center time. I have a previous post on 10 FREE Kindergarten Apps where you can read more about some of the apps my students enjoyed. Since we had iPads, I’m not sure if all of these games are compatible with other devices.
4. Digital Task Cards: If you need more educational activities to use with your iPads, I have created Digital Task Cards for grade PreK-2nd. These work with the FREE Powerpoint app and after downloading my task cards to your computer, I show you how to simply transfer the files to your iPad, so they are stored in the Powerpoint app for easy access. The task cards are self-checking, so when students get a correct answer it provides a “chime” sound and transitions to the next slide, while a wrong answer stays on the screen and makes a “clank” sound.See them in action:
No iPads? You can play this individually on computers or use whole group as well using your computer and a projector. Simply have the kid click the answer on the computer or point to the answer on the board and you can click it for them on the computer. 5. Virtual Field Trip: This tip is actually something one of my co-workers did. She had a friend that is a fireman, so for fire safety week, her class Skyped with him. He was showing them his equipment, the fire station, etc. Then, the coolest thing happened…the sirens went off! He kept Skyping with them so they followed him on their ride in the fire truck! When it was too loud to talk on Skype, they typed him questions and he’d respond. What a memorable experience and fun way to use more technology in the classroom!!6. BrainPop: BrainPop Jr. is a paid subscription for short, animated, online videos for all subject areas. It follows many of the state standards, and is a fun way to introduce new skills and concepts. Students love the characters and the videos teach the concepts in very kid-friendly terms.7. Erase the Sight Word: If you have a Smartboard or Apple TV, your students will love this next game! You can use a wipe off board style app such as Show Me. Students at their desk need paper and a pencil. If you don’t have any technology, you could simply do this activity on your classroom wipe off board.
To play: Write a word on the screen or app. Pick a student to be the “eraser”. The “eraser” comes to the board and starts to erase the word. As soon as they begin erasing, the kids at the seats start writing the sight word as many times as they can until the word is completely erased. Once the word is erased, students count how many times they wrote it. The ones that had the most, get something special to write with (marker, pen, highlighter). I do this until everyone in the class has a special writing tool. Check out my 10 Ways to Practice Sight Words post for more ideas.
8. Epic: Lastly, my friend Mary Kate also uses Epic which is a digital library full of books and videos. Her students were listening to non-fiction books so they could write reports about them. Epic is FREE for teachers and librarians and an easy way to use technology in the classroom.