A Pinch of PD November 2019
EdTech News & Resources You Can Use on Monday
This is 9th issue of A Pinch of PD, a monthly newsletter for Nursery-Grade 2 faculty at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools.
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DIGITAL READING RESOURCES
- Use ebooks for Read Aloud, Shared Reading & Independent Reading Time.
- Use the "read to me" and audio book features for the Listening portion of Daily 5.
- Have students compare books by two authors.
- Students can use non-fiction books for research projects, such as reports on animals.
- Project text on the whiteboard to teach a specific skill or strategy. Highlight features of a mentor text.
To create a listening center (for up to 5 students) with an iPad, the Belkin RockStar 5-Jack Multi Headphone Audio Splitter is recommended. There are also lots of inexpensive 2-port splitters available if you'd prefer students to work in pairs.
TumbleBooks, Raz Kids and Epic!
TumbleBooks (K-6)is a curated database of children’s ebooks by well-known author and publishers, available by subscription from the Lim Family Library. Ask Louis to put the new TumbleBooks app on your iPads. It has a simple interface and you can stop being bothered by all those open tabs in Safari.
Raz Kids (K-5) is a teaching tool that requires a paid educator account. It offers hundreds of interactive, leveled eBooks that use the Learning A-Z Leveling System. Individual student accounts allow teachers to assign appropriately leveled text to each student and monitor their progress. Some teachers like to introduce Raz Kids to the whole class in the CS Lab before using the iPads in the classroom.
Epic! (age 12 & under) is an online children's book subscription service that is free for educators and it was recently approved by our IS Team for use in the classroom. Teachers can create student accounts, curate collections and assign texts based on genre, interest, or reading level. Epic has a powerful search feature that allows teachers and students to narrow books to specific categories or features. Books are from leading publishers, well-loved authors, series and Epic originals.
Click below for a detailed chart comparing TumbleBooks, Raz Kids and Epic.
BookFlix and TrueFlix
Besides TumbleBooks, the Lim Family Library also has school subscriptions for BookFlix and TrueFlix. Library subscriptions are also available for families to use at home.
BookFlix (PreK-3): BookFlix pairs classic Weston Woods video (fiction and nonfiction) storybooks with nonfiction titles. Categories include Animals & Nature, Earth & Sky, People & Places, ABCs & 123s, Adventure, Family and Community, Celebrations, Music & Rhyme, and Imagination.
TrueFlix (3-5) offers dozens of units to supplement social studies and science learning. Ebooks include primary sources, fiction, videos, audio clips, images, and related websites/articles. Each TrueFlix title gives students a chance to watch a video, read a book (with "read to me" feature) and explore more. Categories include People, Places, History, Science and Nature.
Use your whiteboard to project BookFlix and TrueFlix for a whole class lesson or request them to be put on your iPads as webclips for independent or small group learning. A webclip looks just like an app but is a direct link to the website and takes you to Safari on the iPad.
PD on Your Time: HGSE's Askwith Forum
What Happened to Kid President?
This month, Novak and Montague created one last pep talk from Kid President and they have started a new adventure called Kid President: Are We There Yet? Find these videos and more at wondersparks, "resources to spark conversations, creative challenges, and continued explorations." Although the Are We There Yet? videos and topics may be better suited for older students, you may find inspiration and ideas for younger learners. In Episode 2, for example, Novak and Montague travel to Selma, Alabama to meet some kids making a difference and a woman who was a freedom fighter during the Civil Rights Movement. Each video includes rich lesson plans with resources/reference materials, protocols (like See-Think-Wonder), and ideas for creating and connecting.
Another video (part of the Brad Story series) is called Smuggling Hope. "This lesson fosters a greater understanding of hope and encourages students to depict their personal definitions of hope. Creating and then sharing their art gives them an opportunity to also share hope." Children were invited to create art depicting what they thought hope looked like, and then Montague and his wife smuggled over 500 pieces of the art into the Guggenheim Museum in New York City. Watch and see what happens!
APP REQUESTSClick here to request apps from Louis. Bookmark this page for future use!
From Louis: Please make your app requests at least a day in advance. While I may be able to add the app in the system as soon as I receive your request, it can take up to a few hours for the management server to complete the installation and for the apps to be available for use.
RESERVE THE CREATION STATION
Email Louis to reserve time in the Creation Station: firstname.lastname@example.org