March 28, 2007
A brand new website was launched today that allows users to create their own comic strips. Toondoo is a site that allows the user to create their own unique 1, 2, or 3 panel comic strip and quickly publish it to the Toondoo website or a blog. Now I have zero artistic ability and under normal circumstances I would never be able to express myself in this format, but Toondoo makes it easy. Toondoo provides a series of backgrounds, characters, props and text boxes to choose from, or if you prefer, you can upload your own pictures and use them. Once you pick your elements you can resize, rotate, or move them around the page as you like. You get total control of your comic strip. When your done you can publish with a single click and your comic is viewable on the Toondoo site by all.
This is a free website that can easily be used in classrooms from elementary to high school. As we look for new and exciting ways for our students to express themselves, websites such as Toondoo offer even the right brained challenged an easy way to create a visual statement. Utilizing a website like Toondoo is a good way incorporate art, technology, and content in a fun way and get an attractive and potentially meaningful product.
Here is my Toondoo comic strip.
I challenge you to make your own Toondoo comic and post the link in the comments section.
March 26, 2007
The technology department is in the middle of working on a new web site for the Auburn Public School District. We are working hard to develop a web site that is functional, informative, and attractive. In an effort to perhaps prompt some discussion on this blog I would like to know What would you like to see on the new Auburn Public School web site? Leave a comment below and tell me what you would like to see on the new website or what you would like to do through it. I’m sure some of you have ideas we have not thought of yet. I can’t promise everyone’s idea will make it to the site, but we will do our best. So leave a comment below and help us shape a site in which we can all be proud.
March 23, 2007
If you are looking for a tool to help your students study their vocabulary you might want to try Quizlet. Quizlet is a very simple free website that lets you create vocabulary tests based on words and definitions you provide. You don’t even have to type them, if you have lists generated already you can upload them. Once the words are in it allows your students to move through 3 steps, Familiarize, Learn, and Test. It also allows them to print word lists and flash cards. The tests are very nice and include spelling, true/false, matching and multiple choice questions. Here is a link to an SAT vocabulary set you can try on your own.
As a teacher you can sign up for Quizlet for free and create your own vocabulary lists for practice tests, enrichment, and study aids. When students access the tests it randomly creates an individual test for them. Once completed it corrects their work and offers them the chance to take another randomly generated test.
Quizlet is a nice web site that is worth checking out.
March 23, 2007
As you read these entries, please be aware you can leave comments simply by clicking the link underneath each post. You can use this to ask questions, share ideas, or make statements. The ability of the reader to engage the author is one of the major features of blogs!
March 23, 2007
Here is a link off the Scholastic web site that allows your students to design a caterpillar based on certain environmental variables. The students get four scenes and have to choose the color, spines, and defense mechanisms of the caterpillar based upon the environment and nearby predator. This is really nice because not only does it make the students think about why they will construct their caterpillar in a certain way, it also asks them to explain why they made the choices they did. At the end of the exercise it examines each scene and tells them what might have been the best choices in each scene. They have the opportunity to print their caterpillars at the end of the activity.
This is a nice little activity for elementary classes.
March 15, 2007
Do you know what an Ides is? In the ancient Roman calendar supposedly developed by Romulus the Ides is the 15th of March, July and October and the 13th day of every other month. While the phrase Ides of March became synonymous with doom thanks to William Shakespeare, it originally was a simple feature of the Roman calendar. Check out a picture of the Roman calendar here.
Speaking of Shakespeare… did you know you can access the full text of all his plays, including Julius Caesar online? The good folks at MIT have archived them here.
March 13, 2007
I have run across a very simple web site for making attractive newsletters. Letterpop is a free website that provides you with several high quality graphic templates and allows you to fill in the content. It is easy to do and produces an attractive product. You could easily use this to make classroom newsletters or have students create a newsletter about their family or some other topic.
This is what is great about the new world wide web (Web 2.0), it allows you to easily create products. Before we could only read knowledge from the web, now we are able to create and present.