I love a good curated email list! (I still enjoy getting the Intercom every Monday morning in my email box.) Toward the end of the year, I started to subscribe to the EdSurge newsletter. Luckily, I had a free block every Thursday morning. Each week, I enjoyed sitting down and reading the various articles about educational technology. Frequently, I would get so excited that I would email one of our edtech coordinators to discuss something that I had read.
I enjoy EdSurge not only because it highlights all of the recent news and developments, but it also tackles issues such as equality in technology and privacy implications with some of the programs. At the end, they also highlight a tech tool based on teacher feedback. In short- this has become one of my favorite weekly professional developments! Add it to your summer to do list to check it out!
Recently I came across the app called Goosechase. It sets up a scavenger hunt via the website and an app. It was really easy to create, and my students were able to easily figure out how to play as well. The directions to set up the game are here.
I logged in and then I set up the game with a name and a password. Then I started setting up the missions. I stuck with the photo and video missions. Students could choose for the most part, but sometimes I wanted actions, so I had them record a video. You can also add in a text submission. If you wanted to hide something somewhere with a message and have students write it back, this would be a possibility. We were working on directions and city vocabulary, so I stuck with many of those words. I would write a description of what they were supposed to do all in Spanish. I wrote 14 missions, but students were finishing them faster than I thought. I was able to add more missions in once the game started which was a nice feature. I ended up with 24 missions and most of my students finished within 30 minutes. You may want to aim higher if you want students to have extra questions. It probably took me about 20 minutes to sign up to create the game and create all of the missions. The app also provides suggestions which you could translate for students to your TL.
When students came into class, they split up into teams and used the directions under the team tab for how to join the game. Again, this was pretty self explanatory. My students only used one phone per group. I did not see a way to add more phones per team, but this may be a possibility. With the free version, you can have up to five teams playing the game at once. Once the teams were in, I clicked on start/stop and set the game for 30 minutes.
Here is the BEST part: while the students are playing, I get an update any time they submit something! Therefore, I can tell what is going on even though I am sitting back in my room. Here are some of the videos that I saw coming across my screen:
I could also give bonus points or takeaway points while they were doing this. If I wanted to add points, I could do that by entering the points. Using the bonus point feature, I could also subtract points by adding the subtraction symbol with the points (-100 etc). The students didn’t actually see this though while they were playing.
While they are playing, we can all see the leaderboard. Then once the game is over, I can see all of the pictures in each section:
This was a lot of fun for my students to do. It gives them a lot of input with reading, and it allows them a way to visualize their learning. Plus they completed about one task a minute- which is a good pace! I hope you will check out Goosechase!
I have seen a lot of awesome scavenger hunt ideas for a foreign language class. I wanted to try a QR audio code hunt for a particularly gorgeous Friday day. It took me about 20 minutes to create and print 10 QR codes. I found an old tutorial on how to create audio QR codes, and none of the websites worked, so I wanted to update this idea with what I used here. You could also print double if you have a large class. Here is how I did it:
- First I made my recordings in Vocaroo. I love Vocaroo because it doesn’t require a log-in, is free and produces a link. Once you record, you save the recording, and you can copy the link.
- Then, I went to this QR code generator. I put the link from Vocaroo into the website and click “create QR code.” I downloaded the QR code that they displayed. When you click on download, an ad pops up. It is free- you do not have to click, log-in or buy anything! (Don’t click on the ad!)
- I put all of the downloaded QR codes on a Word doc. I also numbered the codes, so I could keep track if I lost any between classes.
- The best part is that students can use Snapchat to read the QR codes. They aim their screen at it, and take a “snap.” A few seconds later the link pops up! I would recommend using this platform for HS students. I had students recreate the pictures as I described them in Spanish. You could also have them draw pictures of each one which would be fun as well. Here are some of my favorite pictures from Friday: Also share how you use QR codes in your classroom!
Many people participate in Twitter chats. It is the main reason that I joined Twitter in 2012! (Whoa- I cannot believe it has been 5 years!) However, they can be somewhat limiting as tweets are flying fast, and you cannot tell the tone or expression of people. What would make that better? A video (and Flipgrid!)
One of my fellow EdCampMetroDC friends Matt Frattali had the genius idea for VedChat. Each question has a different board in Flipgrid. You check out the video intro on each board then record your answer in a “flip.” (Stole Matt’s name!) You can practice recording your flip by recording an intro here. If you are new to Flipgrid, you hit the green plus button and record a quick video. Then you have to take a picture and type in your name. That’s it! Done! You don’t need an account or even have to put in an email. (You don’t even need Twitter or worry about including a hashtag!) Then, you can record responses to other people and interact with them.
You can sign in to record an intro NOW, but the fun will start Tuesday night (tomorrow!) at 9 pm. The theme is storytelling- and as one of the question recorders, I can promise that there are some thought-provoking questions. I cannot wait to go beyond Twitter to #vedchat!
As much as I love Kahoot and Quizizz, they are not collaborative. Triventy is a multiple choice quiz, but students can add questions on their own. It is very easy to do and add questions. In order to create a quiz, you can create an account. Then you click on the green “create a quiz” button:
After this, you can invite others to participate. You can type a name then click on the yellow button that says “invite others to add questions.” This box pops up:
After you click on “invite” this box pops up:
I used the link for my students. You could also incorporate it into Google Classroom or on Facebook or email. When students add questions this pops up:
My students were able to figure out how to add questions without any explicit instruction from me. They all seemed to figure it out easily. I like that they can click on “survey question” to see what others would pick instead of awarding points. Also, I can edit any question before they play it. Then you can click on play game! Just like the other games, it generates a code for students to join. However, you cannot kick inappropriate nicknames out! I will say that the game itself isn’t as “flashy” as Kahoot or Quizizz, but it was awesome to get each student’s question up there. The students were also really invested in seeing their questions. This could be great for an interpretive task or as a survey! At the end, my results were emailed to me. Have you tried Triventy in the FL class?
Obviously I love Adobe Spark. Almost all of my graphics are made as posts in Adobe Spark (including the one that you see above). Next year, I am excited to teach Spanish V. Since we have a lot of different electives and choices, we were asked to make a video to explain our classes. I reached out on Twitter, and a lot of people helped me formulate an idea. Here is my finished video using Adobe Spark! This video probably took me 30-45 minutes to put together including the edits and suggestions from others.
If you would like to make your own video, I put together this tutorial to explain how to put one together. Also, even if you do not want to create a video, I discovered this website which has free music to use for videos! I searched “Spanish” and came up with a ton of music to use and download.
If you are looking for ideas to use for videos, I published a list here. Also, I came up with a new activity for my blended students that I am excited to use. I started a story with two sentences in a Google Doc. Each student has to add on two to three sentences to form a story. Then after they create the story, they have to illustrate it using Adobe Spark video!
Stacey (our tech specialist) shared the new development by Quizlet- Quizlet Learn. This video introduces it. Essentially, students can sign up for the date that they have a quiz in Quizlet Learn. The program will tailor questions for them getting easier or more difficult as it progresses. It will also send students reminders and encouragement at different checkpoints. This feature will help students have a study plan leading up to the quiz.
Once students are signed into Quizlet, they find a study set and click on learn:
Then they click on the button which has the lines and circles in the upper right hand corner:
This pops up with settings, and they can scroll down to set their due date:
Then students can study and they will get messages about their progress:
I am pretty excited about this feature! The only downside is that this is only available for iOS now. Quizlet says that they will roll out a version for Android and desktop soon! I know that I have many students who love Quizlet not just for Spanish but for all of their classes. Hope you check it out and share this with your students!
I love to shop! When I studied abroad, I loved to wander around stores and supermarkets. It was so interesting to see what each store had. Since we don’t have time to pop over to Argentina and wander around stores, webquests are one of my favorite things. When students navigate a website, they see that sometimes certain countries use different words then what we learn. We always have a conversation about price. In addition, websites have so many pictures that support comprehension.
I found this website for the store Falabella in Argentina. I used this for furniture, but you could use it for clothes, sporting goods, beauty etc. I created these questions about the website for my students. We are going to discuss a few things about them tomorrow like what items they wanted to add to their house specifically. However, with this website you could find so many ideas for other units!
- You could also give each student a room to decorate and a budget then have them pick out designs for the room.
- You could have students come up with outfits from the website. You could even review clothes when you talk about sports because they have a huge list of athletic clothes.
- They also have a link with job descriptions. This would be perfect for upper levels.
- Students could compare the technology that we have with the technology from this store. What is similar and different?
- If students look at their Facebook page, they can see some back to school promotions (and discuss why they are going “back to school” now).
- Too much reading? Check out their YouTube page for videos on gift ideas, fashion tips and commercials.
I am off to NYC to present at NECTFL! (Hope my flight leaves safely!) I am presenting at techlab on tech tools in a proficiency based classroom. Here is my presentation!
Last year, I implemented Seesaw in all my classes. I traditionally used it for a writing journal and an occasional voice link. As I play around more in Seesaw this year, I found myself using it more and more. I also have students who really like to take pictures with it for their journal entries. Even if the assignment doesn’t require it, I do enjoy the little snapshots of our class.
Yesterday, I presented to my department. I created a tutorial on how to sign up. This is a basic explanation with screenshots that describes how to sign up. In my email, I also detailed how I used it in class. Here is how I have used it:
1. Do all of their writing in it! They can write presentational pieces or interpersonal writing in the comments. This can be done as an in-class assignment or as homework.
2. Take a picture and label it with the target language
3. Take a video in the target language.
4. As the teacher, leave a voice comment for a student and have students speak back!
5. Have students take a screenshot of their work and reflect on it. (I have even had students take screenshots of their Seesaw work to comment on it- see the pictures below.)
6. They can also snap a picture of their notes from class and talk about them.
7. After talking about the music video
, I had students recreate the story in four scenes. They put the pictures into PicCollage, so they did not have to upload them individually in Seesaw. Then, they wrote a caption for their pictures in Spanish. Here are a few results:
8. Finally, recently I have seen these awesome #booksnaps on Twitter. In Book Snaps, you take a snap of your favorite page, add a caption and also maybe some cool stickers or drawings. This year, I have been struggling with how to keep FVR low key to benefit students and how to hold them somewhat accountable, so they aren’t just staring at the page. Today, I asked them to just find their favorite part. These are some of my favorite #booksnaps! My students did this on Snapchat and uploaded it to Seesaw, but you could have students do this right in Seesaw, too!