Sunday, October 04, 2015

SLO or Not... it's Still The Library!

I know I don't blog enough. I want to share what I am doing with my students in the library but the problem is time. I know we all say that, there are not enough hours in a day.

When I do write a blog post I don't always take the time to share it here but I decided I should share my SLO thoughts with other librarians in my state. I took the time to write a post as a guest blogger for my state librarian's association blog... check it out here. It is much longer than my normal blog posts on this blog but I had so much to say about SLOs. Please leave a comment if you read my post, I would appreciate it!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

So Proud of Teachers in my District!

So many teachers in my district are excellent at incorporating technology into the classroom. But what makes them even more wonderful is that they love helping other teachers in the district that are trying out what they already do so well! Here is just one example from an elementary teacher. It warms my heart as we enter this new school year!
What wonderful things do teachers in your district do to help each other, leave a comment and let me know!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Just Wow

One of the things I learned at ISTE2015 and from my friends that attended DENSI is that there is more than one way to do things. I am playing right now with importing Discovery Education Videos into the Green Screen App and now I find this video of how to create animations in Keynote from Dennis Grice. Amazing Dennis. Thanks so much for sharing!

Monday, July 20, 2015

The Franklin Institute and The Elmwood Park Zoo!

Trying out some different types of digital storytelling with my grandson this summer. First we tried a green screen video using the Green Screen App by DoInk on the iPad. My grandson talked about his visit to the Franklin Institute to see the exhibition The Art of the Brick.

Next, we tried Anamoto to tell the story of our visit to the Elmwood Park Zoo on Friday. This is all new to my grandson but he needs to know that when his hand hurts from writing things in a journal that we can have fun with his writing and paint digital stories! He likes the cool part after he cries because his hands hurt from writing! He is a lefty and it is very difficult for him to write. I now have more sympathy for all my left handed students!


Friday, July 17, 2015

Infographics with PPT

Infographics are something I would like my students to create as part of research projects in the library. However, I don't want to pay for infographic creation tools. I want to use what we already have and what we already have is PowerPoint. I came across this video today and it just might not be as difficult as I first thought!

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Skyview is a National School of Character

I am very proud to share that my school, Skyview Upper Elementary School in the Methacton School District has been named a National School of Character by It was an interesting process and I am so proud of our students for holding up under the pressure of interviews! What a great experience! And just so you know, our school has coined the word Pillariffic to describe those who exhibit the pillars of character. Each Friday when students are being recognized for representing one or more of the six Pillars of character: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship, I stand at the library door and give a big cheer, "Woo-whooo Pillariffic!"  The kids like that they are getting some recognition and are amazed I can cheer that loud! Like I said, I am very proud of our students!

Monday, June 01, 2015

ISTE is 26 Days Away!

I am so excited that ISTE is in Philly this year. I am so excited to be doing a poster session with some of my wonderful students. I just found this info-graphic on the ISTE website and wanted to share:
Join the EdTech Revolution!

Sunday, May 17, 2015


In the early months of the second semester my students spent a couple of class periods analyzing photos of Newsboys and researching the Newsboys strike of 1899. I admit I stole the idea from Paul Bogush's 1000 Words Photograph Analysis. I wanted a new way of introducing Primary Sources to my students and I had never seen anything like Paul's analysis worksheet. It really made me wonder, could 5th and 6th graders think that like that? But instead of just the analysis I wanted to see if students could make inferences and turn their thoughts into a 140 character twitter post with the hashtag Newsies. Below is one raw video green-screen that showed me my students could think for themselves. This student made a video that shows how Newsies would have used Social Media if it had been available back then! I am amazed by my students every day!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Non-Fiction Book Reviews

My students have created some wonderful non-fiction book reviews! I am so proud of all of them!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Movement is our Best App

The Sunday before last I had the pleasure of attending the first DENapalooza as Discovery Education brought Dr. Lodge McCammon to the pre-conference session of PETE&C. This is a little video Dr. Lodge put together that is a mash up of the day. One of the things I want to bring back to my students over the next few weeks is his "Commonwealth of Old Pennsylvania" song. Since the students are studying the colonies right now I thought it would be a great way to bring music and movement into the classroom because as Dr. Lodge says, "movement is our best app."

Friday, February 06, 2015

PETE&C in 2 Days!

I am very excited to be a presenter at this year's technology conference in my state and when I took a look at who is attending on this Padlet I got even more excited... take a look and see everyone on Sunday!

Sunday, February 01, 2015

NonFiction Book Reviews

I am so proud of my students. They worked for a couple of weeks writing book reviews and creating story boards before creating a non-fiction book review using the Explain Everyting App on the iPad. Check out this review on Crocodiles. My heart is bursting... such a great job!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Finger Knitting

What else is there to do on a snow day? Someone posted this video on twitter about finger knitting. I am not good at knitting, I can crochet but knitting with 2 needles has always alluded me. But this video shows a kind of knitting I may be able to do and incorporate into a maker space in the library. It looks easy but I have not tried it yet. I do have some yarn I can bring to the library if I can do it and show students how to do it.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Quality Blog Comments

The general music teacher in my building and I are collaborating on a 21st Century project as part of our teacher evaluation this year. Our strand is Peer Collaboration and since music and library are not normal collaboration partners we decided to see if we could make it happen. The first part of the project involved students composing music for their recorders. This happened in December and the students uploaded their handwritten compositions to a music composition program and printed out the compositions. I scanned each one and put them into a blog. In January the students will listen to at least 4 different composers and comment on the recorder compositions. The comments will be posted under the composition being evaluated. That's my job. The compositions in the form of a PDF are already on the blog waiting for student responses but we will not be making comments until we learn how to write quality blog comments. The music teacher and I've brainstormed vocabulary words we'd like to see included and what a good comment should contain and now it's my job to teach my young charges just what makes a quality comment. One of the best resources I found is Mrs. Yollis' Class blog and video on quality blog comments. Quality blog commenting is just good digital citizenship! After the project is completed it is my hope to continue blogging and commenting with the chosen group of students. Out of our 34 classes we chose 3 fifth grade classes to start with, if it goes well I will be asking for your help to comment on my student's own blog posts. If there is one thing I learned via my Keystone Technology Innovator's training this summer is it's time to be brave and make things happen for my students. Blogging quality comments is the first step!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Student Quick-Sheet Guide for Google Classroom

If you and your students are as new to Google Classroom as we are, here is a wonderful Quick-Sheet Guide that was created by Alice Keeler. I am going to put it on my Google Drive and share it with students via a classroom announcement. Hope it will be useful for my students.