Sunday, May 6, 2012

What's New Lately?

In the hustle and bustle of grade one, life has been nothing short of cray -zeee lately!  I have barely had a minute to breathe let alone search out new apps, and implement them into my classroom!  However, last week I made it a priority!

We discovered this new app.... Curious Zoo.  We only previewed it in class and the kids decided it looked like fun, especially for their home devices.  It is geared at 3-5 year olds and lets them go on adventures with George feeding and washing the animals at the zoo.  There are additional educational videos about the animals, a photo gallery and mini games to add to the learning experience.  This app was free until May 1, I am not sure what the price is now.  On May 2 a second area of the zoo opened up.  I was sent an update and was not charged since I already owned the app - so that was very exciting!

We also discovered Patterns by iKidsPad.  It has beginning and advanced levels and has kids extending patterns and filling in missing pieces of the pattern.  I am using this as an assessment tool.  We practice together on the lcd projector and I hope to give each of the kids the opportunity to play the game independently so I can assess their skill level and guide my instruction.

We created a Youtube video of  our Roots of Empathy baby using the iMovie app.  I have posted about how to do this in previous posts.

We have also been using the Skip Counting app on a daily basis and I must say I see a HUGE improvement in their counting speed.   I also plan to use this app to assess their counting abilities to 30.

Finally my BIG news is, I am getting another Ipad2 in my classroom!  I had $500 to spend on something for my classroom and that was my big purchase.  I went with the iPad2 again even though the new iPad is out for a few reasons:
1.  It was $419 - which meant I had left over money to spend!  The new iPad was $519, which meant I would be investing some of my own money.
2.  With the left over money I bought an AV adapter - yay now I can stop bringing mine from home to school every day!
3.  When it arrives in its lovely little box engraved with my name from the Apple Store I will see how much money is left and I will buy an itunes card to get a few new apps!

I am really excited about having 2 iPads for my classroom.  And when I am able to use the 3rd iPad that belongs to a Special Needs student in my class, it means I have 3!  Three is a learning center!  3 is manageable to share with 17 students!  3 will be so exciting until the end of June when he and his iPad move on to grade 2, but guess what - I'll still have 2!

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