TEACHnology Today

Technology Integration Newsletter-February 19, 2015

Websites to Teach Keyboard Skills to Elementary Students

Students today need to be familiar with keyboards of many sizes and varieties. They will grow up utilizing keyboards to send text messages and navigate iPad keyboards and standard computer keyboards at school and at home. Each type of keyboard will take practice in order to master, although I'm sure that learning how to send a text message will be accomplished with lots of practice as a part of a student's social life in middle and high school.


Elementary teachers statewide have taken to integrating keyboarding skills into centers or homework, while also providing websites for skill practice at home. Practice with keyboarding will pay off later, as students who have trouble locating keys may fall behind with any computer based project done in the classroom.


There are several fun websites that can assist teachers in building the keyboarding skills of their students.


BBC Bitesize: Dance Mat Typing
There are four levels to play, each divided into three stages. Students begin by learning the home row keys. Each stage builds on previous lessons, introducing new letters as students progress. At the end of each level, students may opt to test their typing speed and get a fun reward. This website is great because it encourages students to learn "touch type" or to type without looking at their fingers.


Typing Master
This site has a variety of games that range in difficulty. Students can choose a game and then elect to practice the home row, the alphabet, the alphabet with numbers or the numeric 10-key pad. In each game, students type a letter on the keyboard in order to advance in the game. There are several games to choose from including pacman to pop the bubbles, and while they play they are familiarizing themselves with where the letters are on the keyboard. This site is good for younger students and is also a great letter practice for preschool students.


Lang Sense

This website provides students with 16 free typing lessons. Each lesson's difficulty gradually increases. The first lesson begins with 2 characters and the final lesson includes the entire keyboard. Students will also get an idea of how many words they type per minute (WPM), their accuracy in typing and where their errors are typically distributed. While the tutorials are very well done, they are a little dry and don't have the animation and fun that is included in DanceMat. The lesson package does provide students with a great amount of typing practice in a regular series that is broken into small and manageable steps. This may be better suited for upper elementary and middle school students.


Learning the Keyboard Games

This website is similar to Typing Master and provides students with a variety of games, including stacking cups and the letter factory. There are also more formal tutorials available for older students. If you haven't checked out this site before there are TONS of other games available for just about every subject area.

BBC Bitesize: Dance Mat Typing

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Elementary Math Videos for the Flipped Classroom

I came across this collection of math videos that would be great for homework support at home or to personalize learning for your students. They are divided by years.
40 Reflection Questions from Edutopia

This list of 40 great reflection questions represent 4 perspectives that encourage readers to look backward, inward, outward or forward. You can use these with your students or for professional development.

The Types and Severity of Plagiarism Violations

In our digital age, students may find themselves tempted to use copy and paste when completing homework or writing papers. The infographic below created by The Visual Communication Guy may be helpful when teaching about plagiarism. For a larger version of the image, click the red button below.


The Visual Communication Guy also has larger posters of many valuable infographics available for purchase on his website if this is something you'd like for your classroom. I know that the LPPFE was looking for teachers to bring them their requests for smaller purchases if that is something that interests you!

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Past Editions of TEACHnology Today

September 4, 2014: Important Links, About Tech Integration, Chromebook Update and Google Classroom
September 11, 2014: Important Links, Technology Goals, Google Calendar and Chromebook Checkout, the 1-iPad Classroom and Reflector App
September 18, 2014: Important Links, Kahoot.it Tutorial, iPad App: Rhyme to Read
September 25, 2014: Digital Citizenship Image, Chromebook Checkout Refresher, iPad App: Noise Down, Bookmarking Sites: Tizmos and SymbalooEDU (with examples/resources by subject area and grade level)
October 2, 2014: Technology Goal Submission, Tutorial: Remind, Technology Workshop Opportunities, Chromebook Use Update
October 14, 2014: Technology Goal Update, iPad Spectrum, Apps for Every Classroom, Cool Tool: Planboard with Examples
October 23, 2014: Teaching Digital Citizenship and Internet Safety, iPad Reference Card (Printable), Cool Tool: Chatterpix App, Google Classroom, Apps for English and History, Sight Words on iPad, Youtube Channels for Educators
November 10, 2014: Tech Integration Request Form, Reflector and Splashtop (installation and use with your iPad and school computers), Google Calendar Refresher and links to LP School Calendars
November 18, 2014: Technology Mini-Session Poll, iPad App Suggestions with ThingLink, Thankful Turkeys with imagechef.com, Past Editions and Tech Integration Request Form
November 25, 2014: Technology Mini Session 1 Information, Planboard: Unit Planner How-To Guide, Formative Assessment with Socrative

December 4, 2014: Using Apps to Level your Classroom Library, Leveler Websites and Databases, 15 Virtual Field Trip Apps, and a Neat End of Year Activity

December 17, 2014: Survey Tools, Socrative, 30 Best Apps of 2014, WebTools with No Registration Required, Fun Classroom Timers

January 8, 2015: Technology Goal Update, iPad Student Objectives with Apps, iPad App of the Week: Phoster, A Comprehensive Guide to Classroom Blogging

January 30, 2015: Technology Half Day Ideas, Technology Half Day Form and Procedure, TED Ed Writer's Workshop Videos, iPad Volume Apps that LP has available for student or staff iPads

February 3, 2015: iPad App Request Forms, 12 Elementary Apps that Should Be on Every iPad, Learning Objective Maker, Saving Attachments to Google Drive

February 19, 2015: Websites to Teach Keyboarding Skills to Elementary Students, Elementary Math Videos by Level, 40 Reflection Questions, "Did I Plagiarize" Infographic