September 15, 2009


I discovered a new website: for using AudioPal. It seems like an easy and free way to record your voice and embed your recording to web applications. I am going to try it out with my students for our first collaborative project. Has anyone used it before? What do you think?

August 31, 2009

Happy New School Year!

The beginning of the school year always seems to fill my mind up so much that I walk around in a haze. The haze is slowly dissipating and my mind is starting to work again! I am excited to challenge myself this year to keep using technology in my classroom. So far I have been using the Smartboard to help teach and practice math concepts and have set up reading listening centers on ipods. I also created a film with my class where each student set a goal for the year. It was a fun project which we did together on the Smartboard. It introduced my students to film-making and got them excited to be making films this year. As always I am inspired by my colleagues and other Global Learners and am looking forward to another great year!

cross-posted at:

June 5, 2009

End of Year Reflection

When I told my students yesterday that we would be reflecting on our experiences from the past year they collectively groaned. A few whined, "I don't want to reflect." Perhaps we "reflected" too much over the school year! But once we got into it, they couldn't stop thinking about our year together and all of the things they had experienced together. One thought led to another and to another and to another.

The last thing we did before they left for summer break was share one thing that they would never forget about third grade, something they will take with them. The two things that came up consistently for my students was going on field trips and using technology. Those experiences will stay with them and held the most meaning for them. I'm reflecting on that!

cross posted at:

May 27, 2009

Collaborating with Ms. Hughes

Working with Kathy Hughes has been an honor this year! Although I am her "mentor" I have learned so much from working with her. Thank you Kathy! I am impressed with Kathy's positive attitude, sense of adventure and willingness to try new things and stick with it until she fulfills the goals she sets for herself. Her students are lucky to have her.

Our final collaboration project went well for my class. I had my students work with a partner to publish two poems that they wrote. They chose one to type on their glogster and another to record and put their audio file on the glogster. We used ipods and italks to create digital voice memos. It was easy to download them to Glogster for the students to use. They also included the avitar images they created on We saved those as pictures and downloaded them to glogster.

Check out our poetry glogs on our classroom blog.

Lesson Plan

Cross posted at:

May 13, 2009

Glogster Craze Hits Third Grade

My class has also started to use glogster! Thanks Liz for showing it to us at the Global Learners UNITE session. Today we used the Smart Board and Glogster to create a classroom glogster about our responsibility to share the world with other animals. Each student got to put an idea onto the glog. It was a fun and engaging way for students to collaborate on a project together and to incorporate ideas from a poster they created and a writing assignment they did independently for previous assignments. We kept it simple and just have photos and words on it. What do you think of our finished project?

cross posted at:

lesson plan at:

May 10, 2009

Research Writing with Podcasts

At the end of the year my students have been growing a little too comfortable with each other, me, and everything we do regularly in the classroom. The best thing to do seems to spice things up and add a little more variety to our learning! That's why I decided to have my students publish their expository paragraphs in a new way. They wrote about a topic they researched on the internet and with books. They created podcasts to publish their work. This motivated them to complete their paragraphs in a timely fashion and to do a good job with them. They loved recording their voices, even if most of them were a bit nervous at first. We used iPods with iTalks to create some voice memos. I then posted them on my website. Next we are going to listen to each podcast and the students are going to help assess each others' work using a rubric from Write Source for expository writing. I found this was an easy and fun way for students to publish their writing. Check them out on our classroom website. Does anyone have any other ideas on fun ways for students to publish writing?

November 6, 2008

Collaborative Book Reviews

Fourth graders at Central and third graders at Alsup created book reviews, posted them on blogs and read book reviews written by other students. They left comments for each other, read comments left to them, and left comments to respond to those left for them.

This was my first collaborative Global Learners project with Kathy Hughes who teaches fourth grade at Central. We kept it relatively simple for our first project. We decided to focus on reading and student blogging.

My students were really excited about blogging! They loved using the laptops, reading book reviews, reading comments, and leaving comments for each other. They also learned a lot about blog etiquette. Students wrote interesting, thoughtful comments to each other and responded well to comments left for them. It was a good project to start with, not being too complex, and incorporating reading and writing skills. It took longer than we planned and because the third graders were not able to leave comments for the fourth graders until the blog was adjusted and it took students a long time when using the computers for the first time for a project like this. Throughout the rest of this school year students will be completing more book reviews to be posted online. The classes can continue to read each other’s book reviews and leave each other comments.

Please visit our blogs and leave us comments, or visit with your students! We'd love to get more comments about our book reviews!

Alsup Third Grade Book Groups

Central Elementary Book Reviews

Lesson Plan