Archive for August, 2009

Fun Technology Ideas for the First Week of School

Posted on August 10, 2009. Filed under: EdTech, Teachers |

By Fran Mauney

Welcome Back Teachers!  I hope you had a wonderful, restful summer break and are full of energy as you prepare for the upcoming school year.  I wanted to share some helpful technology tips that will make learning fun and meaningful for you and your students.

1.  Use your Flip Video camera to record the students as they tell about their first day of school, ask them to tell you what was the best part of their day or record the proper way to walk down the hall, raise your hand to ask a question, line up in the cafeteria and play safely on the playground.  Then review the procedures with your students and add to the video throughout the year.  Make a movie about their adventures, email the movies to the parents, and play it on the interactive white board as you publish their ideas!

2.  Use a digital camera to take photos of the teachers, cafeteria staff, office staff, nurse, guidance counselor, and custodians as you go on a scavenger hunt around the school.  Bind these into a book or make a transformation of the book Brown Bear, Brown Bear:  “Students, students, who do you see?  I see Mrs. Smith looking at me.” End it with “Mrs. Mauney, Mrs. Mauney, who do you see?  I see my students looking at me!”

3. Sign the Class Contract using your Interactive White Board (Smart of Promethean).  As a class develop the rules and procedures for your classroom, write the rules on the interactive board,  and let each student come up to the board and sign the contract.  Print the contract for each student and send it home for parents to read during the first week of school.  It could be called your Code of Conduct or have your students think of a name for the contract.

4. Show Google Earth to your students and how to find their school and their homes.  Or you can just show them Google Maps, make sure you show them street view so they can actually see the signs and houses as they move down the roads. 

5.  Show them how to use .  You can go ahead and check out books to view on your interactive white board, or download some audio books to your MP3 players for students to listen to during independent reading time.

6.  Show the website  and go to DISCUS kids.  Explore all the fun features of Britannica Learning Zone, Kid Infobits, Britannica Elementary. Check with your media specialist for the username and password.

7.  During your Open House or Orientation, make a Power Point presentation to show all the important information to parents and students:  For example:  Lunch is $3.00, Breakfast is ____,  Parent letters go home on Mondays in the Homework Folder, Spelling tests are on _____, School begins at ___, have a Wish List in the presentation and posted in your room.  I have an Orientation Power Point on my wiki that you can use.

8.  Using your teacher website, assign the parents homework and have them write a story about their child and tell you what their child’s strengths and weaknesses are, how they learn best, what they enjoy most in life and what they’d like for you to help them with this year.  Save this letter and refer back to it frequently.  It helps to remember that each student is someone’s special child.

9.  Assign a class photographer each week to take photos during the year.  At the end of each quarter or at the end of the year, make a movie using Movie Maker or Photo Story about the exciting learning that took place in your classroom. Post your photos online and email the parents and students the link to the photos so they can share the learning experiences.  Use or or to upload photos.  Don’t forget to only post students’ first names when publishing their work or photos. 

10.  Use student response systems to get to know one another.  Ask questions and have students use Senteos, Activotes, Activexpressions to vote for their favorite restaurants, colors, books, etc….

Try a few of these tips and have a wonderful year with your students.

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    The School District of Greenville County – Instructional Technology Department


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