Friday, February 22, 2013

QR Code Frenzy

This blog is proving to be witness to a lot of firsts.  This post is no exception.  This week, I attempted (for the first time), to create a QR code activity for my third graders.

I’ve seen lots of great QR code activities out there, but most of the ones I found were for math.  Since I don’t teach math, I decided to create one of my own.  And I couldn’t be more proud of myself! (Humility is a virtue!)

I started on Pinterest (imagine that!).  A long time ago, I found a pin for QR Stuff where you can not only create QR codes, but you can also fancy them up!  And it couldn’t be easier.  Just 4 simple steps left me with cute QR codes that linked the students to images of comic strips.

The students scanned the QR code, read the comic, then rewrote it using quotation marks correctly.  In order to challenge the students to be creative with their “said” words, I told them that “Said is Dead.”  We discussed other words that could be used instead, and I provided them with this poster to encourage them to use these more descriptive “said” words.  Grab your own “Said is Dead” poster [here].

As you can see, the kids really enjoyed this QR activity.  They worked hard and did a great job!  I’m so glad that my first QR code adventure was a success!  What do you do with QR codes in your classroom?

Saturday, February 16, 2013

edmodo...for third graders?!?

Recently I was able to attend FETC in Orlando.  Can I just say, BOY was I OVERWHELMED!!!  But I learned a lot!  One thing I brought back from that technological frenzy was not exactly new to me.  However, I was able to view it in a whole new light.  Enter edmodo.

If you haven’t heard of it, edmodo is a free learning management system that resembles social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.  It provides a safe, controlled environment in which students and teachers can interact and communicate easily and quickly.

Now, our school system had been using edmodo for about a year.  I even had an account, but I could only see it as a professional development tool.  I didn’t see how I could utilize it in MY classroom.  Until now!

My third grade students have been doing a novel study using the book, Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater.  After each chapter, the students would write a response in their journal.  Sometimes the response was to answer a question about comprehension or inferring, other times it consisted of making graphic organizers or drawings about what they had read.  After FETC, it dawned on me that I could use edmodo as a reading response journal.  PERFECT!

So, my students created accounts.  I posted a question.  They replied in complete sentences, at least they were supposed to!  But, at least they responded!  And the best part…They were EXCITED about ‘writing’!

Here are a few examples of our posts:  (P.S. The grammar, spelling, and punctuation is still a work in progress!)

I can't wait to discover new ways to use edmodo with my third graders.  Any ideas???

Monday, February 11, 2013

A First Time For Everything

A friend and I have decided to start blogs.  She teaches second grade and I teach third.  This is completely new to me, but here goes nothing!