Friday, September 4, 2015

Ice cream anyone?

Performance assessment: How do you get students excited about assessments? I decided to make it fun and use a personal favorite, ice cream!! I used a picture of an ice cream cone to represent the different levels of performance. We made ice cream cups in class and we analyzed each "scoop" or layer of performance. All students decided that they would like to get 4 scoops of ice cream so they would try to always use sentences. They discussed the language learning process and how they need a strong foundation (cup) to add more knowledge (scoops of ice cream). We had a terrific time and students left both with a big smile and a better understanding of performance assessment!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Weebly and BMS School Library Website

BMS Library Media Center website

This school year I moved our BMS School Library website to Weebly.  Previously, I used a Google Site.  The reason for the change to Weebly is it allows easy embedding of content like widgets, digital videos and images.

In a 1:1 environment, it's important to create a library website that offers tutorials and resources that teachers and students can access at any time to support the learning in the classroom.  I update the library website as I create resource lists for research projects and add technology tips & tools for teachers and students.
Research tools & resources
Resource Evaluation video & tools
How to use WeVideo Features

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

To Blog or Not to Blog

KidBlog (Modification and Redefinition)
Students on the Lightning Team have been blogging all year using KidBlog for both science and social studies topics. Students are encouraged to use tags (hashtags) to quickly access and highlight their topics. Students have learned how to make positive comments to one another and ask thoughtful questions within their blogs. KidBlog has allowed us to monitor, make private and public comments, and even edit student posts and comments, if needed.  You may view our blog at the following website:

Here is an example of one of my student's blogs:

To Dump or Not to Dump. That is the Question.

Students are given opportunities to use technology through Discovery Education's Board Builder application.
Here are a couple of examples showing how technology is redefining my classroom:

March 16: Technology/SAM-R (Redefinition) : Discovery Education Board creation by teacher and students BLOGS - To Dump or not to Dump, That is the Question

February 26:  Technology/SAM-R (Redefinition) :The following is a Discovery Education Board Created for students regarding the Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire.:

This is an example of a student blog on Roman Legacy:

Creative Commons and Flickr

I collaborated with classroom teachers this year to teach students about creative commons licenses and Flickr.  Students use digital images in their videos, blogs and other presentations.  Learning how to find and re-use digital images with a creative commons license teaches students to think & behave ethically when using technology.

  • Ms. Evans' 8th grade students used Flickr to find images with Creative Commons license to create book trailer videos. 
  • Ms. Mixson's 6th grade students used Flickr to find images with Creative Commons license to embed images in their blogs. 
  • Ms. Taylor's 7th grade students used Flickr to find images with Creative Commons license to create book trailer videos. 
Flickr image on student blog

Image credit at the end of student book trailer video

In Spanish class we have used a Google Document to redefine an assignment. 

Every learner will use a world language, other than English, to engage in meaningful, intercultural
communication, understand and interpret the spoken and written language, and present information,
concepts and ideas in local and global communities.
Through learning another language, they will gain an understanding of the perspectives of other cultures
and compare the language and cultures learned with their own.
 Summary of Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century

Language Competence:

Presentational Speaking (PS) and Writing (PW)

I can present information, concepts, and ideas to an audience of
listeners or readers on a variety of topics in a culturally appropriate


1. Students can describe their own personality traits, likes and dislikes.
2. Students can describe likes, dislikes and personality traits using he/she
3.Students can describe others likes, dislikes and personality traits using they.


Students were asked to take a picture of themselves and a friend. Using Google Presentation students created a slide in which they included both pictures and wrote sentences about their own likes, dislikes and personality traits. They wrote sentences about a friend too. Students shared the document with the teacher and a friend. As they were writing their sentences in the target language both teacher and friend were able to ask questions or suggest correction in real time. Students were able too make corrections before errors become fossilized.


Students enjoyed the interaction with their classmates. Students paid more attention to detail to avoid being corrected by a friend. Students produced better quality sentences and more sentences because they were willing to take risks and tap into their competitive side to complete the assignment.

Transformations With Scratch

Geometry students have been studying transformations in the coordinate plane: translations, reflections, rotations, and dilations. In this assignment students applied their knowledge of transformation rules to implement those rules in the Scratch programming language. They were also required to demonstrate their code by programming the cat sprite to trace a pattern that the penguin sprite would copy under the appropriate transformation.

Feel free to look inside students' projects to see how they implemented these as well as other transformations.