Websites for a Digital Makeover

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I had the privilege of seeing Cheryl Conley’s sessions on the 21st Century Teacher at FETC in Orlando a few weeks ago.  Cheryl is a former Florida Teacher of the Year, and I can see why. She was so engaging and enthusiastic!  Cheryl shared examples of technology-integrated lessons that she has used with her 4th graders that really bring learning to life. The following are a few examples of websites that Cheryl shared to help teachers start or continue their Digital Makeover.— This website organizes iPad apps by subject and grade level, allowing you to search for curriculum-related learning apps.  Appitic is a collection of more than 1300 apps organized by Apple Distinguished Educators.  If you have iPod carts or access to even one iPad that you can use in your classroom, this site would be a great way to start organizing your content.  — Edudemic is an excellent resource for all things education technology related that teachers can really use. This website will bring teachers up to speed with resources such as: “The 20 Best Apps for Special Education” and “5 Apps for Organizing School Work.”  If you just don’t know where to start when it comes to integrating technology into your teaching practice, Edudemic is a great starting point. — Create speaking avatars and use them as an effective teaching and learning tool. Voki is a free service and also has a database of lesson plans, tutorials on how and why to use avatars in the classroom,  a teachers corner, a “Voki” classroom to create a manage students account, and much more. I visualize this as a opportunity for your students to have ownership over a project by managing a “Voki” project for your classroom. There is so much out there for teachers to learn, let’s flip the classroom and allow the students to teach us a thing or two!  — Textbook companies such as McGraw Hill are making the transition from paper and pencil to digital through a variety of resources, such as this website that features mobile apps for learning. If your school has invested in iPod carts, this would also be an excellent resource.

In this information age there is so much out there that it is difficult to know where to start when it comes to using technology for student achievement.  Choose one really helpful website as a reference point that includes resources you can blend with your existing technology tools.  Have your students be active participants in project-based learning that incorporates your favorite websites or apps. I hope the above sites peak your interest and give you a few creative ideas!

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