March Tornado Technology

"I don’t disagree that a lot of professional development monies are wasted. And truth be told, teachers should be responsible for their own PD now. Kids wouldn’t wait for a blogging workshop. Adults shouldn’t either." --Will Richardson

Introducing a way to access training from anywhere at anytime. Don't panic, though, I'll still be holding in person training sessions for those of you who like to hang out with me!

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Challenge Your Tech Integration Skills, AND Win Prizes!

These Google Challenges will challenge your classroom tech integration skills. Each challenge completed will enter you into a drawing for impressive prizes! Don't worry if you don't have time during this stressful testing season, these challenges are open until we begin school again in the fall! They have been designed to address skills from the individual technology plans. All are designed to be self-paced and self-learned, BUT if you need help, Google Challenge PD will be held throughout the spring and summer. Watch your email for more information! This is fun stuff! Click the "Introducing. . ." title above for the link.
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Introducing ClassCraft! A grown up version of ClassDojo that our elementary teachers are using to motivate students through gamification. ClassCraft is a simple way to gamify your classroom! You've already received an invite (CMS Teachers) to check out how it works. I'll be using ClassCraft myself as a way to recognizing and rewarding teachers for their tech integration efforts. This includes all kinds of tech training and the actual implementation of tech in the classroom. So, play along! You'll have a much better idea of how I'll be using ClassCraft to motivate students in the makerspaces, and you might even find you'd like to use ClassCraft in your classroom!

As I mentioned, I'll be using ClassCraft to recognize the accomplishments of students in the makerspaces. As students complete challenges they will earn XP points that will allow them to advance further in the ClassCraft game. There is nothing for you to do! You have each been assigned a ClassCraft class, but I will be monitoring and adding points. Some of the competitions will be individual, but many will be team awards. Since many students are motivated by gaming, we hope this will encourage kids to complete challenges. Many of the makerspace challenges are STEM related, but students will also find digital storytelling, art, geography, and other challenges. The challenges are in the process of all being moved online by clicking the "Makerspace Challenges" title below. Check out some of the challenges that have already made their way online. BTW, please share challenges you'd like to see in the makerspace!

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Chrome Apps and Extensions Highlights

Google Add On Highlight: gMath

g Math: There IS a way to handwrite on a Google Doc without making it a PDF file first!

This is a HUGE find, especially for those of you who think math can't be done in a Google Doc, therefore, Google Classroom is of no use to you. Watch the video below to see how! gMath also allows students and teacher to type using math symbols or they can even do speech to text in gMath. This is not just for math, however. Those of you using the Kami App, may have just found an easier way!
Mash-Up: Google Doc + g(math) Handwriting Feature
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GeoGuessr is both a website and an iPad App

This application places you in a Google Maps street view somewhere in the world. Your job is to find clues to make your best guess as to your location. The closer you are, the more points you get. You can play in single mode or as a classroom challenge. Teachers can also narrow down the competition to a particular country or region. It's fun way to learn geography and even topics like botany!
This has many more applications than just geography. Set up a Geoguessr competition that tracks historical markers throughout the US, or track Darwin's voyages?. The possibilities are endless. WARNING, playing this is pretty addicting and educational.
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ReCharge Summer Technology Conference - Agents of Change

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