Friday, December 28, 2012


Mrs. Boucher's Fifth Graders are reading the book Horten's Miraculous Mechanisms
"S. Horten as if his name isn't bad enough, now 10-year-old Stuart is forced to move far away from all his friends."  This book is full of some challenging vocabulary.
Watch an interview with author Lissa Evans.
Also, watch Mrs. Boucher's educreations to see how the students portrayed some of the vocabulary words.   The students had a lot of fun planning this project.



On Line Math League

 Early one morning I dropped in on the Online Math League Second Grade Group who had arrived before school for some math fun with Mrs. Sewall.  When I suggested the iPads and math, smiles were everywhere.  These students used the iPads to show their work in very creative ways.  It was enjoyable listening to their discussions as to how they worked through the problems.  I always learn a new way to solve a math problem when I work with students.
Try to solve a few of their problems:
1.  Clare loves stuffed animals.  She has 13 stuffed cats, 9 stuffed dogs, 18 stuffed teddy bears, and 11 other stuffed animals.  How many stuffed animals does she have in all?
2.  There are 22 students in Mrs. Turner's class.  13 of those students are girls.  How many are boys?


Monday, December 17, 2012

Stories on Line

Storyline Online

Using picture books in the classroom is a lot of fun.  The enjoyment students show is priceless.
One of my favorite sites is StoryLine OnlineThis is a FREE site!
You will find actors reading picture books aloud.  I have used this site for both whole class and small group work.  One of the popular books is The Polar Express read by Lou Diamond Phillips.

Another site is We Give Books.    This is a FREE site!
We Give Books is a new digital initiative that enables anyone with access to the Internet to put books in the hands of children who don't have them, simply by reading online. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

New Students

When I set up my classroom in the fall I always planned for a new student from day 1.  I kept an extra desk in my classroom that I added to my class seating arrangement.  This desk belonged to "Mr. Nobody".  Everyone loved to sit next to" Mr. Nobody".  Sometimes we even had a "Miss Nobody".  In that desk I would store all the materials I passed out to my class during the first month of school.  I was then prepared for a new student who may arrive during the course of the year without hunting around my room.  This saved me lots of time and made life just a little easier.
Mrs. Jordan has a new student coming to join her class next week.  Her class made this educreations to help introduce Steward School and Mrs. Jordan to her new student.  What a nice welcome this will be.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Fourth Grade Blog

The Fourth Grade at Proctor School has started a blog for their Teddy Bears.  Please visit their site to check out all the marvelous journeys their bears are having.  Be sure to leave them a comment. 
Bears have feelings too!

*Tech Tip:  How to insert google maps into your Blog.
Enter your destination in the top search box.
Click on the link icon in the top left, next to the print icon.
Select either web address or HTML code.
The HTML code allows the image to be seen on your blog.
Go back to your blog draft and switch to HTML, found next to compose.
Paste in your HTML code wherever you would like the image to appear.
**Tricky Part.  I like my pictures centered on the page.
Align your widget to center
Enter the following code before and after your HTML
< div align="center">
Your widget code here...


Friday, December 7, 2012

Pine Glen Elementary School

I went on a Field Trip.
Mrs. DeFrank, our school librarian, and I went to visit Pine Glen Elementary School in Burlington.  Principal John Lyons, a former colleague of ours, gave us the grand tour.  We interacted with teachers and students in all grades as they warmly welcomed us into their classrooms.  We saw technology in use everywhere.
Kindergarten students were dancing to the Nutcracker as they prepared for a field trip.  (oh, so cute)
First Graders were working in centers.  Some were on iPads, while others were on the smartboard.  One class had an iPad menu for each day of the week with pictures of Apps for the day.
Third Graders were editing Fractured Fairy Tales on the iPads using Popplet, Drawing Pad and Book Creator.  I was so impressed I am going to recommend those Apps for our iPads.
Fifth Graders were researching using Discovery Streaming.
QR (quick response) codes were posted outside classrooms that allow anyone to scan them for access to class blogs.  I was inspired, so I made my own.
Both the Librarian and Technology Specialist took time from their busy schedules to share the amazing things happening at the warm and cozy Pine Glen Library and Technology Center.  We saw students using ipods to look up books, chrome books as search tools, parent volunteers checking out books, a lab with a green screen in place for videos, interactive white boards, a cart of iPads and smiling students dropping in for help.   
We left Pine Glen really inspired.  A special thank you to Mr. Lyons, Mrs. D'Elia and Mr. Callahan.  We had a wonderful visit.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Technology Showcase

We had our first Parent Technology Night this week.
It was a night of sharing all the work teachers and students have been doing to implement technology across all areas of the curriculum in our schools.
The Smartboard, iPads, and my new Apple TV (thanks to TESPTO) were on display. 

A Special Thank You to Billy, Harrison, Iris, Olivia, Ryan, Caleb, Alec, and Samantha, our student experts who shared their knowledge! You all made the night fun.

A Special Thank You to all the parents who also visited.
Haiku Deck was the chosen app to create a PowerPoint presentation.  It worked wonderfully.
Haiku Deck is the best application for creating presentations on iPad

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Apple TV

An Apple For The Teacher...
An Apple TV that is! 
No, it's not really a big TV.  It's a little black box that connects my iPad and the students' iPads to the smartboard with an HDMI cable.  I am in love.  It does take a little getting use to because now you don't need to be standing at the front of the room.  At first, I found myself still wanting to walk to the front to write on the smartboard but I quickly adjusted my teaching.  Your iPad goes with you around the room and your work is still on display.  It was an inspiring moment. Students were still working while I could interact with anyone in the class at a moment's notice.  I could adjust the work as I checked in with students.  Some students got an extra hint while others got an extra problem.  This allows students to work at their own levels simultaneously.

This week Third and Fifth Graders worked on math in the library where I connected my new Apple TV.  The Third Graders have been working on Bar Modeling to show subtraction problems.
They worked in their Math in Focus workbooks and also showed their knowledge on the iPad.  The fun part was the sharing.  With Apple TV, students have the ability to display their work and share their thinking.

The Fifth Graders were working on adding and subtracting Fractions.  They worked the problem on their individual iPads and then they became the teacher when they shared their work.  It was exciting watching the students get excited about turning their iPads on to mirror their work and become the teachers.

**Tech Tip:  Connect the Apple TV with an HDMI cable to the projector.  For an older projector you will need an adapter.
For the new smartboards change to HDMI.  (this is the button next to the sound)
Make sure all the iPads are on the same wireless network.
Double tap the Home Button on the iPad. 
Slide the bottom dock until you see the AirPlay button. 
Select Apple TV and turn mirroring on. 
Presto!  Your iPad is on display.
Be sure to tell the students that they need to wait to be asked to share.


Friday, November 30, 2012

How to Be a Role Model

The students in Mrs. Rec's class have been discussing role models during their Olweus block.  Their discussions led to an educreations presentation.
Check out the Tritown School Union website for more information on the Olweus Program.


Monday, November 26, 2012

The Three Branches of the Legislature

Are you Smarter than a Fifth Grader?
Mrs. Madden's Fifth Graders were hard at work for the past two weeks researching The Constitution and the Three Branches of Government.  They took notes and highlighted important information.  The students then created a minimum of 5 slides to include: title page, Legislative Branch, Executive Branch. Judicial Branch, and Checks and Balances.  Many students included extra credit pages as well.  They then recorded their voice and added extra details for their final educreations presentation.

Quotes of the Day:
"I loved it!"
"It was really fun because we got to use iPads and I have never really used one.  The end was fun when I became an expert."
"I like taking pictures."
"Educreations was fun to use.  You get to speak for yourself and highlight.  You can't do that on other things."
"This was fun to use.  You can draw and create a video while underlining."
"You get to be really creative.  It is easy to use pictures.  I learned some new things."
"I want to do this again!"
"The Founding Fathers, the framers of the Constitution, wanted to form a government that did not allow one person to have too much authority or control. While under the rule of the British king they learned that this could be a bad system. Yet government under the Articles of Confederation taught them that there was a need for a strong centralized government.
With this in mind the framers wrote the Constitution to provide for a separation of powers, or three separate branches of government. Each has its own responsibilities and at the same time they work together to make the country run smoothly and to assure that the rights of citizens are not ignored or disallowed. This is done through checks and balances. A branch may use its powers to check the powers of the other two in order to maintain a balance of power among the three branches of government."
This was a very enjoyable and challenging experience.
Do you know how many Supreme Court Justices there are?  Who is the Chief Justice?
What does each Branch do?
How can the President be impeached?
Samantha R.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday Mickey and Minnie!

On November 18th Mickey Mouse will turn 84 years old.
Anyone who has visited my classroom has known of my Love of all things Disney. I am especially in love with Minnie Mouse.  I even drive a mini (Minnie) van with a seasonal antennae ball! 
In honor of Mickey's and Minnie's birthday I am giving you a peek into my new "Disney Office".

As a classroom teacher I always loved celebrating my students' birthdays.  We would begin the day with the birthday chair cover placed on the Birthday Student's seat.  On the smartboard would be a Happy Message for the day.  The lucky Birthday Boy or Girl then got to stand on their chair. Yes, they were told to be careful but they loved this part.  We would all sing Happy Birthday. 
*Tech Tip: I have discovered a great free online birthday site.  You can find the names of your students (and friends) and the site will sing a very cute personal version of Happy Birthday.  You can even download the songs and email the songs for a surprise in someone's inbox.  The students love to enthusiastically sing along.

Before School

As I was walking by classrooms on Friday morning before school I was surprised to see many students in classrooms hard at work.  The day hadn't even started yet!  Many teachers were in their classes offering extra help to anyone who wanted to come in early.  I work with very dedicated teachers and hard working students
In one class I laughed when I discovered students sitting in their chairs, clustered at the front of the room working on chalkboards as their teacher instructed them from the front board.  They were eager and willing participants in this old fashioned method.  No new technology here; only chalk and chalkboards, yet the end result was remarkable.   Engaged students learning something new.
This is a reminder that sometimes the simpliest of things can still work .


Friday, November 16, 2012

The Bill of Rights

 What is The Bill of Rights?
 Definition: First 10 Amendments to the Constitution.
By the end of July 1788, 11 states had ratified the Constitution. But the new government could not go into effect: North Carolina and Rhode Island did not approve the Constitution until after the government was set up. James Madison was a strong supporter of the Bill of Rights. These amendments protect individual rights against government intrusion.  They were all approved by 1791 and became known as the Bill of Rights. 
"[A] bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular, and what no just government should refuse."
--- Thomas Jefferson December 20, 1787

The fifth graders in Mr. Wentworth's class have been researching the Bill of Rights.  Students worked with a partner and used the iPads and the fifth grade portal to do their research.

Their task was to create 3 pages: title including the amendment, meaning of the amendment, and the importance of the amendment.
*Tech Tip:  The teams created their pages in educreations, took screen shots of each page, the pages then were emailed and added into one presentation for recording.

Our Founding Fathers would be very proud of their hard work!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Gobble, Gobble, Cluck, Cluck,
Are you having turkey or maybe duck?
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.

I thought I would share some fun activities for Thanksgiving.

Scholastic has a wealth of great resources for students.  Their First Thanksgiving page contains many videos, journal entries, time lines and virtual field trips.
Click on the picture below to go to the Scholastic web site.

Fill in the Blank  Thanksgiving Mad Lib 
This is for Puzzle Lovers.
Too Many Turkeys.  Here is a fun Where's The Turkey game.  Similar to Where's Waldo. 
Search for the turkey with the bow time.  Gook luck and have fun.

Visit Plimoth Plantation.  This is an interactive site.
Be the Historian at Plimoth Plantation.   

Test your knowledge of Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Prime, Composite, and Square Numbers

What happens when you give a group of fourth graders the challenge of teaching others about prime, composite, and square numbers?  Of course they create an educreations presentation!
The students in Ms Scott's class have been studying Factors in Chapter 2 in our new math program, Math in Focus.  They all did a remarkable job explaining these 3 types of numbers.
Click the links below the standard to learn about numbers.


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Open House

On Thursday night Proctor School held its annual Open House for parents and students.  I have always enjoyed visiting with parents and students during Open House.  It is a pleasure seeing past students and learning about what they have been doing.  It is fun to show off all we have been working on in school.  It is simply an enjoyable evening!
A few of the classes had iPads on display in their rooms.  I saw many people exploring and creating on the iPads.  There were some interesting pictures left using Photo Booth.  Rest assured they are all deleted now.
 As I walked around the school I had my iPad with me to capture pictures of the evening, as well as to share our work.  Many students stopped me to show their parents their own educreations projects.  There were big smiles everywhere during the night.
One of the tasty events of the night is the ice cream sundaes for sale in the cafe to benefit the band.  I was treated to a delicious hot fudge sundae at the end of the night.  Yum! Yum!  And YES, I did eat the whole thing!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Drawing with a stylus

In the week before Halloween as I visited each class we continued to work on the ipads.  One of the activities was to help with drawing and writing with a stylus and our finger.  We experimented with the look of each.  All the students drew a picture of their favorite candy.  We had quite a few varieties displayed with so many details and colors. We talked about the fact that you can only have one "favorite"  but you can like more than one.  I also drew my favorite candy.  I like chocolate but I love red Swedish Fish.  To my delighted surprise I received a bag of my favorite treat the next day from one of the Third Graders. I am a happy girl!
*Tech Tip:  Order 100 styluses on ebay.  Great deals and free shipping.


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Color and Light

The fifth graders in Mrs. Boucher's class have been very busy for the past week. 
In science class they have been studying color and light.  The "test" was to show what they know in an educreation presentation.  It was very impressive.
The process began in the classroom with a written draft of the test. The students created an outline of their answers to help them organize their final work. We booked the library and the iPad cart and everyone was ready to take the "test".
The students were all focused and created wonderful and thoughtful presentations.  When the students were done they then worked with a partner and practiced their presentation before the final recording.  There was a lot of science vocabulary in the room that day.
*Tech Tip:  The students took screen shots of each page as they finished them in case any of their programs suddenly closed. (And as it turned out this saved the day a few times because we could recreate our presentation.)
The next step will be to share their knowledge with other fifth graders.
 MA framework that was addressed:Light Energy: Recognize that light travels in a straight line until it strikes an object or travels from one medium to another, and that light can be reflected, refracted , and absorbed. 
Take a peek at the presentations at educreations and learn something new about color and light.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift was live at Proctor School today!
Well really it was a live webcast from Scholastic in New York City.  Proctor students were invited to the library this afternoon to watch the 30 minute webcast.  Taylor talked about her love of reading and writing.  She answered questions from her live audience as well as from classrooms around the globe.  She inspired everyone to be a reader.  The biggest hit was when Taylor sang one of her songs from her new CD, Red, for the students.  Our audience was so excited!  There was a lot of singing in our own library.
The students were told that the letters RED stand for Read Every Day.
Take a look at a tape of this live webcast.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

PicMonkey~ collages

Are you looking for a fun way to display your photos?
Pic Monkey is a great way to help organize and share your pictures.
This is a free website that allows you to create a collage out of your photos.  The process if very simple and you can save your collages and photos to your computer.  There is no storage on line.
  1. You upload the photos from your computer.
  2. Choose the layout for your collage.  The one I choose is Tile Border.
  3. Then select your background color, spacing and corner rounding.
  4. Save, share, or display.
A few of my favorite things.
You can also have some fun with the special effects.
Here are our Rainbow Teachers.
Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 18, 2012


How do plants make food?

The third graders in Mrs. Corliss' class worked on educreation projects to share their knowledge of photosynthesis. 
They began in class by drafting their title page with their name, title and date.   The students did a rough sketch of their picture with labels.  They also wrote a script for their recording.  In the library, the students worked on the iPad and drew their flower with details. 

Creating our pictures

Working with a partner the students rehearsed before they recorded.

Check out the educreations experts' completed photosynthesis projects.