Wednesday, December 12, 2012

An Easier Way to find the Perfect Font! has a very clean and simple interface so all you have to do is type in the word or words you want to preview text for and then click ‘load fonts’. It will display your phrase in all the different fonts on your computer. You can simply click on the fonts your like and when you’re done going through just click ‘filter’ and it will display the fonts you liked while getting rid of the rest of them.

  • Adjust letter tracking (spacing between letters)
  • Adjust the size of the text
  • Invert preview colors to see white text against a black background
  • View the different cases (Lower, Title, Upper)
  • After initial filtering, drag fonts next to each other’s to look at them side by side.
  • Zoom in to view details of the fonts (nice if using a serif font)
The clean layout of, makes it easy to browse through fonts and easily detect fonts that will work for your project. It’s simple to use, extremely clean and effective; a productivity junkie’s dream come true.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Holiday LiveBinder Shelf

Teachers often request holiday resources and online activities.  I have been collecting an assortment of holiday LiveBinders on my "Holiday" LiveBinder shelf.  You may access them from the tab/page above "Holidays" or go directly to my LiveBinder shelf for holidays:

Portable North Pole

For the 5th anniversary of the PNP - Portable North Pole console,  is sharing the experience of magic by offering a free personalized video message from Santa Claus to your loved ones! Portable North Pole will amaze your loved one with a free personalized video. Help Santa create a memorable video in 4 easy steps!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Monday, December 3, 2012

Online Math Practice takes all the math topics in your grade and gives you a large menu aligned to state standards or Common Core standards. As a teacher you have complete control, giving the kids specific areas that they need to work on. They log in and either work on the assigned homework, or do as many practice problems as they want on any number of topics, all of them relevant. Kids get to ‘earn’ games by showing mastery in tracks of knowledge and as a teacher you can see how well they are doing and download heaps of data on their progress.

The second tool is Scootpad is a lot friendlier than TenMarks and the setup process is simpler. Students join a ‘class’ have a ‘wall’ where they can see messages from their teacher and can even send encouraging messages to other students - these may also be restricted in the teacher account settings. One plus of this is that the messages and status updates come from a pre-approved list, leaving no room for cyber-bullying.

Scootpad takes a different tack to homework, each time they take a quiz the system learns a little more about the individual student, and assigns them questions based on the topics they need to learn. This means that each child gets individualized practice based on their need. Despite its cute looks, there are no games on Scootpad, but it also has reading help as well as math.

One tool lets you give surgical practice based on need. If you need a kid to have more practice on division, use TenMarks to assign lots of division problems. Need the kid to have general math practice and tired of running worksheets off the copier? Use Scootpad to take the place of that big box of math worksheets.

Both tools come with lots of hints, and tutorials and iOS apps.

**NEW for ScootPad**
Introducing The Personalized Learning Path™

See also:
ScootPad - Practice. Learn. Succeed!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Science NetLinks

What is it?
Science NetLinks is a premier K-12 science education resource produced by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. At Science NetLinks, you'll find teaching tools, interactives, podcasts, and hands-on activities, and all of it is free!

Who is it for?
Science NetLinks provides K-12 teachers, students, and families with quality resources for teaching and learning science.

How do I use it?
All of the resources are Internet based and free to everyone. Lessons and activities can be printed or used online. Many of the interactives, esheets, and tools work great on an interactive white board or in a computer lab. All of the resources are designed to be delivered in a variety of formats and classroom settings.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Document Cameras in the Classroom

A document camera is one of the easiest and quickest ways to integrate technology into your classroom. There are very few simple steps needed to use this piece of equipment. A classroom document camera can be connected to a LCD projector through a computer or connected directly to a LCD projector. This one piece of classroom technology can be used to actively engage students in the learning process. Visual learners will benefit from the use of a classroom document camera by seeing small items, text, demonstrations in a much bigger way. Hands-on learners can also benefit from the use of a document camera by allowing them to be the ones placing objects or items under the document camera and explaining what they are showing. Another benefit of using a document camera is the decrease in copying expense. Schools are always looking at ways to maximize the financial resources that are available. A classroom document camera can drastically reduce the amount of copying a teacher has to do. Instead of copying 30 quizzes for a class, place 1 copy of the quiz under a document camera and either have students answer the questions on a sheet of paper or use clickers such as the ActivVotes or Expressions to have students answer the quiz questions.

List of ideas for using document cameras in the classroom

You may also like:
Alternative to Document Camera

ScootPad - Practice. Learn. Succeed!

ScootPad is a free practice & learning platform for Grades 1-5.  ScootPad offers math & reading curriculum aligned with the Common Core Standards.

"At ScootPad we believe no two students master a skill the same way. No matter how students are introduced to a skill (teachers, books, videos, games etc.), ScootPad enables mastery through practice which is personalized to each student with the pace and difficulty that's right for them. One student and one classroom at a time, our goal is to make personalized practice available to all elementary grade students around the world. Personalized practice drives accelerated learning." said Bharat Kumar & Maya Gadde, ScootPad's Founders.

About ScootPad
ScootPad's online practice platform provides the ultimate way to engage students in mastering skills with personalized, self-paced and stimulating learning experience. ScootPad is Free and currently available for grades 1-5 (Math & Reading). ScootPad empowers teachers & parents with invaluable insights and actionable data to track progress and proficiency in real-time. For more information, please visit

Friday, October 19, 2012

Math Common Core Resources - Middle School

I searching for some resources for 7th grade math teachers and thought that others may be interested in some of the math common core resources (pacing guides, curriculum maps, and lessons) I shared with them:

Thursday, September 20, 2012 – The Virtual Classroom – The Virtual Classroom

Yacapaca.comThe days of taking tests with pencils and paper are so dated. Yacapaca 

is what we wish we had in school, if only the technology had existed- a virtual arena that allows students to take tests, submit assignments, and receive grades, and for teachers to grade and view student statistics.

Teachers also have the control to create their own quizzes and assignments. The program focuses on positive reinforcement and learning (for example, when a student answers a question incorrectly, the program explains what the incorrect selection is).

Finally, Yacapaca is unequivocally free, for both teachers and students. In Their Own Words
“Create quizzes, surveys, tests, eportfolios and more”


Yacapaca is free! It could compete with expensive online learning centers- the layout and design is very sleek and professional-looking, and the tools are extensive. By offering this type of quality at no price, Yacapaca is a no-brainer.

Who is Yacapaca for?

Yacapaca's purpose is to help educators to teach and assess their pupils. 'Educators' includes teachers, tutors and home-schoolers. We do not permit pupils to set up teacher accounts. How To Guide

Yacapaca Teacher User Guide - just start at and follow the directions.

Beeclip EDU

...similar to Glogster EDU - except Beeclip EDU has a fully functioning free version which can be used without registration.. 

Beeclip EDU is a fun and easy-to-use scrapbooking app that promotes student creativity, self-expression, and imagination

Beeclip EDU is for teachers and students

Beeclip EDU is especially designed for teachers, students, and the teaching environment. Beeclip EDU has two main goals = save teachers time and empower student creativity.

Beeclip EDU is a scrapbooking tool

Beeclip EDU scrapbooks are an amazing form of self-expression using images, videos, text and much more. They're really easy to use and a lot of fun too.
The best way to get the picture is to use the no-registration trial. You'll get the idea in less than a couple of minutes - Try Beeclip EDU now.

Beeclip EDU is flexible

It's being used for all kinds of creative work. Here's just a few examples of how it's being used.
  • Scrapbooks
  • Moodboards
  • Photo albums
  • Collages
  • Portfolios
  • Yearbooks
  • Posters
  • Diaries
  • Journals
And here's a few screenshots showing you the kinds of pages that can be created.
Philip Twine
Philip Twine
Philip Twine
Philip Twine

Cool stuff I'm sure you'll agree. So what are you waiting for, Try Beeclip EDU now.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Alternative to Document Cameras

How many of you have a digital camera or have access to a digital camera that came with a RCA cord that you have never even pulled out of the box?  You know... that cord with one small mini jack on one end and 3 different colors (white, yellow, red) or one yellow RCA connection on the other end.

Do these cords look familiar?
These cords are usually found on all digital cameras, allowing you to not only connect the camera to a digital screen, but also an LCD projector. Doing so allows you to produce the captured images on a larger-than-life scale.

What you will need:
1. Digital camera with video output
2. LCD projector with video input - input directly on machine or on wall connection for ceiling mounts
3. Cable to connect the two (1/8" mini jack to RCA - see pictures)
4. Lots of batteries or a well charged battery for the digital camera. Even better... use an AC adaptor if you have you have one.
Connecting directly to a projector:

Connecting to a ceiling mount projector - use wall connection:

Power on the digital camera and the LCD projector. Press the "Menu" option on the projector or using the remote, then choose "Input." Select either the "Video" input. The digital camera's contents will appear on the screen.  You can use the zoom in/out features to display zoom in or out on objects such as butterfly wings.

Instantly share/project pictures taken with digital camera to an entire class or large group.  Connect the camera to the projector or TV. Turn on the camera. Select "video" for input on projector or TV. Press the play mode and pictures on the camera will display on the screen. No need to huddle together to squint and look at images on the small camera display. Pictures can be displayed on TVs or project your pictures on large screens for everyone to enjoy!

Ideas for using document cameras in the classroom

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Why LiveBinders?

I know I have shared LiveBinders with you in previous post and trainings, but this video really captures the awesome features of LiveBinders.  What if you could take every binder you own and turn it into a useful digital resource for you and your students?  What if you could share your binders on your classroom website?

LiveBinders - Email, Facebook, Twitter, and texting can all be used to send information to individuals or groups. You can embed URLs on a website or blog. But after enough links/sites come your way, it can be hard to keep track of them. LiveBinders created a way to organize resources and information in one location - which is put together like a traditional 3-Ring binder using tabs and sub-tabs. Ideas:
  • Teachers can embed a LiveBinder link on their website which houses PowerPoint lectures,  Videos, and recommended websites for student/parent viewing.
  • Parents can use it to keep track of safe websites for their kids, or to help them find online resources for their student's project.
  • Collaborative learning groups can use LiveBinder to keep all of their group project resources and information in one organized place.
Watch this video to find out more...

Check out "My LiveBinders Shelf" by clicking on the "My LiveBinders Shelf" tab above or link.  All LiveBinders that I put on my "Engage Students" shelf are also automatically shared on "My LiveBinders Shelf" page of Engage Students.

More helpful resources regarding LiveBinders:

Thursday, July 19, 2012

How to Sign Out of Gmail Remotely

If you use multiple computers or devices to sign into Gmail and think you forgot to log out, you can do so remotely. Scroll to the bottom of your inbox: You'll see information about the time and location of the last activity on your account. Click "Details" to see whether your account is still open in another location.
The page that pops up shows you if your account is open in another location, recent activity, (which includes whether it was accessed by browser, mobile, POP3 and so on) the IP address; and the date and time. You can also log out of all other sessions from here.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


Reading is a child-friendly website that is all about getting kids reading!

Children log on to the site, and add information about their reading (what, when and how long for). An interface with’s databases makes this easy. Email notifications get sent to their parents, who must validate the entries via a simple click. This allows the children to earn points (“RR Miles”), which they can redeem for fun and sometimes-silly things on the site. Children also connect to their friends, thus being able to share valuable information about their reading. When they read, they can also play mini-games together in a Fun and Games section. All of this actually makes reading ‘cool’, and has been a great reading incentive in pilot groups so far. Access to the site had been restricted, but it is now open to the public.

Students just needed that little extra motivation to get the ball rolling, and turning their TV time into a reward was the key. Once they made reading a regular part of their routine, and found books they liked, the incentives, really, were no longer necessary.  Teachers can also join and set up groups, targets and rewards for their classes. When kids join the group, they all share centralized book lists, book reviews and reading logs. A great reading incentive in the classroom.

The result? A fun, safe, and free social network for kids built around reading and encouraging reading that also features tools for teachers and media specialist.

Quick Tour:

Zondle - Games to Support Learning

Practice | Review | Revise | Memorize
Create & play games for FREE
Zondle is FREE ,and always will be!’ 

Reasons why you'll love using Zondle in the Classroom:

1. You can create your own content which is what they call topics and match it to anyone of their games! They have tons of games to choose from. You can make the questions multiple choice, true or false, question and answer. You can use the quick insert, this is where you have flexibility to add as many questions to the topic as you want verse doing one at a time. With that being said, you can make as many questions as you want as well! Make 5, 10, 50…it is up to you! When you think the students are tired of the game, then you can just switch the game but not the topic’s content! Creating your own topic/content is a great way to differentiate in your classroom as well. You make the content based on their needs.

2. Many content topics are already created. You can easily search the topic and review the content. If you like the questions then you can use that topics. If you want to edit it, you can, and make the content fit your needs. Just like when you created a topic match it up to a game and you are done. You can become ‘friends’ with other teachers in your school or around the world and see what topics they have created and use their already created topics and games.

3. You can embed into your website or wiki. Once you have created or chosen a game. Click on embed into my website and it will give you the widget code for you to embed. Yes, it is that easy!

4. You can progress monitor your students two ways. One way is if you have embedded the game into your website then you can have the students record their progress on a progress monitoring sheet. After each game you complete, a percentage comes up such as 85%. Have the students record their data. You can also contact Zondle (Dougie) and he will help you set up your school and classroom so you can progress monitor through their site as well.

5. Once you have created a class the students can go into Zondle using their username and password and play the games you have created at school or at home. You can assign the games for homework and see who completed it or not based on the progress monitoring system and leader boards.

6. It is easy to use and if you get stuck there are video tutorials that walk you though how to do something. Usually at the top of the page but all tutorials can be found at the bottom of their site as well. They also have a help section and they respond in a very timely matter (one time it was within minutes) to all of your questions and comments. Zondle is always improving their site by listening to what teachers and students wants are.

7. Zondle has now created an App! With Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) possibly coming to classrooms, this is a great feature to have as the app works for most devices from iPads, Androids to laptops.

8. The students love it! Who wouldn’t rather play a game of 10 questions verse a worksheet!

9. You can adapt Zondle to fit any language. One thing to keep in mind is Zondle originates from the UK so some words to Americans might be spelled different or terms used differently such as favourite (favorite). This is a great way to teach students about global awareness.

10. You can create your own games.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Groovy Grader

Do you need some peace, love and happiness in your classroom? If so you need Groovy Grader. Groovy Grader is an App designed to replace your “old school” paper grading calculator. Groovy Grader provides more flexibility, convenience and ease then other popular slide graders. It can be configured to work with up to 150 questions (iPhone,iPod) or 300 questions (iPad) and has the option to display the grade with 1 or 2 decimals or as a rounded whole number.

Groovy Grader was designed with usability as a top priority. Unlike other competing Apps, Groovy Grader can view 40 or more grades on the screen at once. It also allows you to turn off the auto-dimming screen. There's no touching to scroll for the most common grades, or to turn the screen back on.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Voki in the Classroom

Below is a Voki recorded by Mr. Ubaldo, as an example of how students & teachers can use Voki in the classroom.  The speaking avatars may be shared via email or they can be embedded on web pages or blogs:

This Voki was also embedded on my training Google Site for class web pages:
Create & customize your speaking avatar and use them as an effective learning tool.

Voki Lesson Plan Example:

Who Am I Voki lesson plan

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Online PDF reader, editor, form filler

PDFescape very useful for those of you who want to edit or create PDF files, but you do not have a PDF creator software such as Adobe PDF. PDFescape allows you to create and edit PDF files without any software!

To start using PDFescape, you simply visit this page PDFescape. After that you can register or if you do not want complicated, you simply log in with your Google or Facebook. Once you login, you can upload a PDF file for editing or create a new PDF file.

PDFescape is a free, online PDF reader, editor, form filler, & form designer. Without required downloads or installations! Without watermarks! Without required registration!
* Open PDF Files from your computer
* View PDF Files discovered on the web
* Fill Out PDF Forms using PDF form fields
* Forget Hand Writing with the typewriter style tool & complete non-fillable forms
* Edit PDF files & forms o Add Text & Shapes to PDF files, allowing customization & markup of PDF
* Move & Delete Pages in PDF files.

PDFescape is a free PDF editor and PDF form filler. Using this Firefox extension allows you to quickly open PDF files online inside of PDFescape (instead of your default PDF reader).

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

FREE Online Photo Editing Resources

Quickly filter, resize or edit your photos.  No apps or plugins required Canva makes photo editing super easy with all their options for templates, custom image sizes, drag-and-drop interface, cool fonts, and much more.

What is BeFunky?
With BeFunky anyone can transform their pictures into extraordinary works of art in just a few clicks.

Photo Effects
BeFunky has more effects than any other photo editor and features you won't find anywhere else. Changing your pictures into oil paintings, vintage polaroids or pop art has never been easier.

Photo Editing
Use BeFunky's sleek and simple tools to make corrections: fix red eye, bad lighting, or dull colors in seconds.

Frames, Goodies and Text Editor
Give your creations, even more character by adding speech bubbles, graphics, frames, and more.

FotoFlexer is the world's most advanced online digital photo editor. It performs advanced effects previously only available to professionals using expensive software.
FotoFlexer is the most powerful online photo editor in existence. It can remove blemishes, change skin/hair color, morph photos and more! 100% free.

 Picasa is a software download from Google, that helps you organize, edit, and share your photos. The local application usage and the online storage up to 1 GB is free, and it is easy to use. The online version is called Picasa Web Albums. Your Picasa Web Albums with all photos can be synchronized with your local folders with the local Picasa application. 

Create Online Quizzes Easily

ProProfs is an advanced, free quiz maker offering more features than you might expect. Advanced options like security, scoring, time limits & more make this online quiz software perfect for corporations, educational institutions and just for fun. This free quiz maker is 100% safe for use in educational environment with Family-safe advertisements in the free version. If you are looking for a test generator, exam maker or a causal quiz creator, ProProfs fits the need. Make your own online quiz now with many options at your disposal.

QuizStar is a FREE Quiz-making Tool!

Use QuizStar to create online quizzes for your students, disseminate quizzes to students, automatically grade quizzes and view the quiz results online.

Testmoz is a test generator that sports 4 question types, automatic grading, a really simple interface and detailed reports.
Testmoz is free, and does not require you (or your students) to register
You can build a fully functional test in about a minute!

that quiz
What is ThatQuiz?

  • A free service for teachers who want to replace paper tests with online testing.
  • An online grade book providing fast analysis of class and individual student progress.
  • An exchange for teachers to share the resources they create.
  • A skills site for students, especially useful for math practice and testing.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Educational Videos & Games K-12 - FREE

Educational Videos, Quizzes and Games for Kids
in Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle and High Schools.

Kids learn best by 'seeing' the real world.

NeoK12 is a wonderful collection of FREE online educational videos, lessons, quizzes, games, puzzles for K-12 students. It even has interactive diagrams for various subjects that would be wonderful to use with your Interactive White Board. All of the content has been reviewed and tested by K-12 teachers. Trust me you will want to put aside a bit of time to visit this wealth of resources.

Thanks to Mrs. B. Davis for sharing this resource that she is using with her 5th grade students at Aquadale Elementary: 


Monday, April 23, 2012

How to Teach Students to be Good Digital Citizens

Join Common Sense Media to hear about their free K-12 curriculum that you can use to teach students to be good digital citizens. You'll be introduced to key lessons that help jump start learning on being safe and responsible online, touching on topics such as cyberbullying, privacy violations, and Internet safety. We'll share resources that will help you build a whole-community approach around ethics and safety with students, teachers, and parents. Participants will walk away with ideas and tools they can implement immediately in your school.
How to Teach Students to be Good Digital Citizens

Media & Technology Resources for Educators

Turn students into great digital citizens!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Versions of Google Apps Explained by Google

Many people get confused between Google Apps and Google Apps for Ed.  Here is an explanation of Google's different versions of Google Apps shared on their blog:
  • Google Apps is our free service geared towards families, entrepreneurs and other groups up to 50 users.
  • Google Apps for Business offers 25GB of email storage per user, a 99.9% uptime guarantee, data migration capabilities, advanced management tools, telephone support, added security features and more, all for $50 per user per year.
  • Google Apps for Government is FISMA certified and designed with local, state and federal agencies in mind.
  • Google Apps for Education offers many benefits of Google Apps for Business, but at no cost to schools, universities and qualifying non-profits.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Book Look: A Digital Book Report Presentation

I found a template for book reports created with PowerPoint.  I decided to upload one of the ppt to Google Docs and edit hyperlinks so students would be able to make a copy of the template and create/edit their own digital book report using Google Docs.

To use the template users just need to:
Login into SCS Google Apps for Ed
Open the Google Doc "Book_Look: Book Report Presentation" template: 
Click File > Make a copy...

Students will need to replace each image of the book cover with an image of the book cover they are reviewing.  They should also replace "(Insert name)'s" with their first and last name.  

Students will need to add/edit text for each slide based on the book they are reviewing. 
Example above: Plot slide: Write a summary about the book without giving away the ending.

Each tab is linked to the appropriate slide for each tab title.  The hyperlinks only work in presentation mode "Start Presentation".  In presentation mode - clicking on any of the tabs will display the corresponding slide.

Monday, April 16, 2012

PicLits Creative Self-Expression

What is is a creative writing site that matches beautiful images with carefully selected keywords in order to inspire you. The object is to put the right words in the right place and the right order to capture the essence, story, and meaning of the picture.

PicLits is a great creative writing site that provides attention-grabbing images and word banks to use to write a caption for the picture or to write a short paragraph. Word lists are categorized by nouns, adjectives, adverbs, verbs, and a universal list. Users can comment on others’ work and rate work using the star rating feature. All work is public.

You do not have to have an account to use the site; however, to save your work you must register for an account. An email account is required to set up an account.

There are two ways to add text to the images. One is to simply “click and drag” words from the list that comes with each PicLit onto the image. Words can be moved around on the image. The drop-down menu beside each word lets you capitalize the word or use a different form of the word. A different word list comes with each image.

The second way is to click on the “Freestyle” link and compose using your own words.

Finished work can be emailed or the provided code can be copied and pasted into a blog or other website.

PicLit illustrating alliteration

Scientific Calculator

Web2.0calc Widget for Your Website

Web2.0.Calc scientific calculator is a very simple and yet useful online calculating application.

It is an online scientific calculator that can perform basic calculations, plot graphs, perform matrix operations, and solve simultaneous equations up to 4 variables.  It can also be used to perform a wide variety of unit conversion: length, area, density, energy, force, power, speed, inertia, bits, and time.

The Web2.0Calc can be embedded in sites and blogs by means of a widget code that can be obtained from the official site.

Free online book: An Awesome Book by Dallas Clayton

Dallas Clayton created An Awesome Book for his son.  The book is about the idea of dreaming BIG and never giving up.  He decided to self publish and worked hard to spread the love of reading the world over.  Since then, Clayton has offered his book free online and started a foundation to give away one book for every copy of An Awesome Book he sells.