18 EdTech Integration Ideas for the Language Arts Classroom

During the September 15th #gafechat Twitter chat, I posed content specific questions to drive conversation and sharing of ideas around 'Creating Digital Awareness'. If you missed the chat, you can find the full archives here.

Here is the Language Arts question that I posed:

Here are some of the ideas that the participants shared. 

The students could...
  1. do an exquisite corpse - have each student write for two minutes and then have students switch and another student continue the story. (@mbswoods)
  2. write using the new Voice feature in Google documents (@alicebarr)
  3. write a collaborative story using a Google Document. Each student can take turns writing a sentence. (@LISDTechie)
  4. summarize in "tweet" style (140 characters or less) (@curryhj2000)
  5. Tweet a writer on Twitter to ask questions about a book (@curryhj2000)
  6. blog and share their thoughts with the class or world. (@TeachingFactor)
  7. create a writing E-portfolio on Google Slides and add images to support. (@TeachingFactor)
  8. write stories together using Story Wars (@ShakeUpLearning)
  9. write a story on a Google document and use the Research Feature to include images to support. (@LISDTechie)
  10. post a question in Google Classroom and have them respond (@MLunoff)
  11. create an online flipbook using FlipSmackEDU (@nsattler) 
  12. record their reflection/thoughts using Vocaroo, save in Google Drive and share with others. (@LISDTechie)
  13. compare and contrast two images provided by the teacher via a Google Form inserted image and paragraph text box. (@tntechgal)
  14. create a Choose Your Own Adventure story using Google Slides or Google Forms (@LISDTechie)
  15. create editorial style blog posts about current events. Have other students comment on posts. (@ospikes) Google Document with commenting rights is great for this. 
  16. compose a quick conversation between two characters (historical, mathematical, fictional, etc.) using Story Builder. (@LISDTechie
  17. draft, write, edit, revise, and then record a podcast using SoundTrap (@AlexaSchlechter
  18. participate in quadblogging to infuse an authentic audience to engage students (@kilgoretech)
Additional Resources Shared:

Check out these posts for other edtech integration ideas:

16 Edtech Integration Ideas for the Science Class

The September 15th #gafechat discussion was centered around 'Creating Digital Awareness.' I posed several questions to guide the conversation towards providing ways to integrate technology into the classroom during certain content areas. The conversation was not grade level specific, which allowed for a lot of great ideas to be shared that can be cross-grade level. The science question posed was:

Here are the ideas that people shared: The students could...

  1. use iPad to record process, sheets to track data and make graphs, Google documents to keep notes and slides to present results. (@tntechgal)
  2. work collaboratively on a Google document in partners/groups to come up with a hypothesis, use Google Forms to record lab results and analyze data from Spreadsheet (@LISDTechie)
  3. use Thinglink to summarize information gathered. (@rechargeedu)
  4. tweet their expected outcome, gather images and video to document the experiment, create a lab report with images, video, information and graphs. (@mbswoods)
  5. use video (iPads, phones, computers with webcam, etc.) to record summary of procedure and lab observations. Post videos to shared location and have students analyze each others to draw conclusions. (@LISDTechie)
  6. use iPad/webcam to document results from experiment and then create Google Slides to share findings. (@MLunoff)
  7. use Periscope to go through an experiment. (@SPFTech_Treglia)
  8. take photos, upload into Drive and create a Google slide showing the steps and explaining the process. (@educatoral)
  9. chart variables on shared Google Spreadsheet and experiment happens. (@jcalvert4)
  10. participate in a Google Hangout with an expert. Conduct experiment and then do a Google Hangout on Air to broadcast their experiment. (@ShakeUpLearning)
  11. participate in a Google Hangout with a college lab class or talk to scientist on hypotheses. (@MLunoff)
  12. use Google Sheets to track data; use Aurasma to interact with experiment or participate in virtual dissections. (@AlexaSchlechter)
  13. create movies to show understanding. (@danaritterbeck)
  14. use the BioDigital Human app to understand biology/physiology concepts. (@nsattler)
  15. create a stop motion movie on experiment. (@KAS1L)
  16. use Chrome Apps, Add-ons and Extensions to understand concepts. Check list here. (@rechargeedu)

Google Calendar Now Integrated with Google Classroom

The wait is over! The wait is over! This is an exciting day, as Google Calendar is now integrated with Google Classroom. No longer are your parents left in the dark on assignments. While parents can't see the contents of the assignment, they can see titles and due dates. Simply share the calendar with the public and embed onto your website to give parents access.

Here is a quick video (less that 2 1/2 minutes) on how to activate the calendar and share with parents. 

20 Integration Ideas for Math Problem Solving

I hear a lot of teachers say that integrating technology in math class is too hard. As a former math teacher and curriculum specialist, I understand the arguments, but I also don't think we should limit students. Math class is about solving problems and proving understanding, but that doesn't need to be done in isolation or only through paper and pencil.

Here are some technology integration ideas that students can use in math class. The ideas came from our September 15th #gafechat about 'Creating Digital Awareness." Here is the scenario and question that I posed:

From the discussion, these were some ideas people shared.

Have the students...

  1. create a screencast video to explain their understanding. Use tools such as Screencastify or TechSmith Snagit. (@curryhj2000@LISDTechie)
  2. create a video tutorial for other students to view (@MLunoff)
  3. create a real life situation with pictures to be solved by classmates. (@curryhj2000)
  4. watch math videos and create their own lessons in Google Slides (@AlexaSchlechter) 
  5. analyze math problems using Desmos (@curryhj2000)
  6. show and explain how they solve problems using Educreations. (@ShakeUpLearning)
  7. create a shared Google document and together with a partner solve problems using the g(math) add-on. One student solves the problem and the other student gives a written explanation steps taken to reach the answer; then switch roles. (@LISDTechie)
  8. use Formative to answer questions, while the teacher watches students answer live. Teacher can then give instant feedback to the students. (@kilgoretech) 
  9. create a math problem and post in Google Classroom. Students can answer each others questions. (MrBermanMath)
  10. Use an interactive whiteboard, such as awwapp.com to solve problems with partners. Student 1 does first step, Student 2 does second step, repeat. (@LISDTechie)
  11. create a Powtoon showing every step to solve the problem. (@MrBermanMath)
  12. engage in a lesson that integrates Real World Math, which utlizes Google Earth to bring problems to life (@jcalvert4)
  13. use Explain Everything to explain their thoughts and the process they took to solve the problem (@MsKarrsGators)
  14. record a podcast discussing the steps used to solve the problems. (@MrBermanMath)
  15. create surveys, collect data and then analyze the results. (@danaritterbeck)
  16. use iMovie to create a movie trailer showing problem solving steps (@MrBermanMath)
  17. use Geogebra to solve geometry based problems (@jcalvert4)
  18. watch a Khan Academy video and then construct a visual, on Google Drawing, representing the information learned. (@LISDTechie)
  19. use Geoguessr, a maps trivia game, to relate distance to points scored (@MathDenisNJ)
  20. create a GIF or stop motion movie showing steps used to solve a problem (@MrBermanMath)

Here are additional resources to use:

15 Integration Ideas for Teaching with Maps

Last Tuesday's #gafechat discussion I posed various scenario questions. One of the questions pertained to students learning about various locations in the world via maps. 

Here are the technology integration ideas that stemmed from our discussion. 

Have the students...

  1. use Periscope to see the world through the eyes of someone else. (@AlexaSchlechter)
  2. use My Maps to build collaborative maps with placemarks, video and images. (@alicebarr@THLibrariZenShakeUpLearningLISDTechie)
  3. show the different locations with streets, buildings, etc. via Google Earth.(@MLunoff)
  4. take a screenshot of the map using Awesome Screenshot Minus and annotate/add text. (@SPFTech_Treglia)
  5. build a tour around the world using Google's TourBuilder, so they can add text, images, videos and more. (@jcalvert4@LISDTechie)
  6. add maps to a Google Drawing or Google Slides and collaboratively add information about the location. (@MLunoff)
  7. build a map using Google Maps and a Fusion Table. (@VCSataylor)
  8. explore the locations via Google Maps/Earth street level. (kilgoretech)
  9. find locations via a scavenger hunt on Google Maps that ties to political and cultural geography. (@MattHarrisEdD)
  10. use Screencastify to record a video explaining how they used websites to identify the locations. (@MLunoff)
  11. identify locations via GeoGuessr, a game that requires you to guess a particular location based on street view. (@bluebutterflysm@MathDenisNJ )
  12. create an interactive map using batchgeo.com and Google Forms. (@kilgoretech)
  13. label a map using Thinglink - a tool that allows you to add text, videos, images and more. (@curryhj2000@AlexaSchlechter
  14. use Google Cardboard to experience locations around the world. (@LISDTechie)
  15. use Scribble Maps to build an interactive map. (@LISDTechie)

Here are some addition resources to help with your integration:
Around the World in 60 Minutes by Michelle Armstrong

PhotoMath App - Find Math Answers Instantly

I love math, but not every person feels the way I do. When it comes to math homework, many parents freak out because they are unable to check their child's work. PhotoMath is a great app for those hesitant parents. 

PhotoMath is available in the App Store, Google Play, Windows Store and Amazon. The application uses the camera on your device to provide you the answer to a math problem. In addition, you can see steps to solving the problem. While there are multitude of ways students can take to reach the final answer, the steps can help parents have a better understanding of one possible route. 

Using the Application

Step 1: Open up the application

Step 2: Place the math problem in the red brackets and the answer magically appears. In this example, the problem on the paper was 2(x+5)=16 and when I hovered over the problem the answer of X=3 appeared.

Step 3: Click on the 'step' icon and it will take you to possible steps to solve the problem. 

Some teachers might fear that students will use this to finish homework. While this is a valid concern, it isn't a strong enough one to make me not want to share this application. I believe that student understanding will surface during assessment time, so using it during homework time won't benefit the student. 

PhotoMath is out there and odds are students already know about it and are possibly using it already. By sharing the benefits of using the app to find mistakes or check for understanding you are taking the excitement of getting away with something from the students. Thus allowing the student to see how this can be used to become a stronger mathematician.  

Mash-up: Google Form + Autocrat = Paperless Teacher Observation Form with Instant Feedback

The Google sheets add-on Autocrat is perfect for creating a paperless teacher observation form that will email the teacher instant feedback based on the observation. Here is a quick, less than 10 minute video that will show you process of setting it up start to finish.

Autocrat can be used for anything that requires data to be merged into a document and shared with others. Here are some additional ways to use Autocrat:

  • missing homework documentation
  • tutorial documentation
  • professional development continuous education certificates
  • mad lib

EasyAccents for Google Docs

The EasyAccents Google document add-on allows you to add foreign language characters to a Google document. 

WordItOut - Great Word Cloud Website

Word clouds have been around for a while and are commonly used in language arts classes. For those that might not be familiar, a word cloud is a visual representation of randomly generated words. The bigger the words the most often they appear in the submitted text. Here is an example of a word cloud I made from the summary of the Armada by Ernest Cline book.  

Having students preview a book through a word cloud is a great way for them to predict what the book will be about. 

I stumbled upon WordItOut when we discovered that other sites could not be accessed by students due to not being able to download or update java and silverlightIt works great on our student devices because it doesn't need those additional plug-ins and it has some nice features. With WordItOut you can create a word cloud from sentences, whole documents, web addresses and tables. 

Once the word cloud has been generated, you have the ability to manipulate the visual to make it more unique to your style. 

Once you are pleased with the result, save and download the word cloud (email is required). For those students that don't have email, they can take screenshot of the word cloud. 

Annotating on PDFs with Kami

Let me be clear, I am not a huge proponent of "worksheeting" a student to death, nor do I think that using technology at the substitution level is the best plan, but there is a time and place when annotating on a PDF might be needed. Kami, formerly known as Notable PDF, is a tool that will allow you to do just that. Plus it easily saves the work in Google Drive.  

Here is a quick video that shows you where to access Kami and some key features:

Add Kami to your Drive

Authorize Kami to Your Drive

Kami Features

Exporting Annotated Version to Drive
After students have annotated onto the document, they can export it back to their Drive and share with the teacher via permissions or upload it to a Google Classroom assignment. 

Google Forms Has a New Look

Google has done it again, they have made another big change and this time it is to Google Forms. It looks completely different.

If you are in a Google Apps for Education district, you might not have access to it yet, as your Google Domain Administrator might have it set to 'scheduled release' as opposed to 'rapid release.' See below image for descriptions. 

Whether you have access to the new Google Forms look now or it is coming in a couple weeks, here is a guide to help you become familiar to all the changes. 

Share to Classroom Extension by Google

Just the other day I blogged about the Add to Classroom Chrome extension and wouldn't you know it Google came out with their own version today. Google's extension is called Share to Classroom.

I must say, after some playing around, I am liking the Share to Classroom extension better and not because Google made it. It has an amazing push to class feature that the other extension does not have.

Push to Class/Teacher - This is AMAZING
Teachers can push websites directly out to students (students must have the Chrome extension downloaded and enabled for this feature to work) and it will automatically open up in the students Chrome browser. This is great for wanting to share a resource with the students all at once, but not necessarily put it into Classroom. After some testing, I did discover that students do not need to be logged into computer at the time of the push to receive the resource. They can retrieve it when they login. 

On the flip side, the students have a push feature on their Share to Classroom extension, but they can only push resources to the teacher and not other students. When the student pushes a web resource to the teacher it doesn't automatically open in Chrome, so the teacher must go and retrieve it.

From the student perspective:

Locate 'pushed' resources:

Make Announcement/Create Assignment
This is similar to making announcements or creating assignments in Classroom. The only catch with the extension is that you can only post to one classroom at a time. To work around this, you can save it as a draft, open it up in Classroom and then assign to multiple classes at once. 

I think this Chrome extension is definitely worth a try!

New Question Feature in Google Classroom

The new 'Create a Question' feature in Google Classroom is amazing. The teacher has the ability to add resources to the question and give a due date (if needed). It also allows the teacher to restrict students from seeing each other's answers and give permission to edit the response after submission

Here is a quick view of creating a question and setting permissions:

Once a student answers the question it instantly changes him/her to done. There is no action required for the student. This is a great way for the teacher to see who did and did not complete the question. You can access all of the responses from the question page (click on the question in the stream to access this page).

With the help of my #gafechat PLN here are some suggested ways of using the question feature:
  • Student feedback on lessons (@mle_val)
  • Exit / Out-the-Door tickets (multiple contributors)
    • Give 3 words that describe what you tool from this lesson (@nschwartztech)
    • What was clear? What was fuzzy (@mrhallstem)
    • What will you remember about today's lesson? Who will you tell? (@sveit)
    • What did you learn today? What should I do better next time? (@mrschoenbart)
    • What stuck with you? (@nschwartztech)
    • What are you left wondering after today's learning? (@thlibrarizen)
  • Practice constructed responses (@mrhallstem)
  • On the fly check for understanding
  • Watch a video and give summary of information learned (@nschwartztech)
  • Continue a Socrative Seminar or Philosophical Chairs discussion (@barbspringsedu)
  • Use with teachers instead of a faculty meeting (@mistymitchellm)
  • Open reflection and goal setting (@shakeuplearning)
  • Daily 'First Thought' Warmup - open ended question to get the students thinking (@lchsmrfleming)

Want to learn more about Google Classroom? Check out my tutorial here