Saturday, January 31, 2015

Super Site Sábado # 11

It's been awhile, but I have a truly super app to share with you all today.

This week we have been working away at a review of verb conjugations in the present tense. Those pesky "yo" verbs keep giving my students a difficult time, so I decided to spend some additional time on them.

Enter Word Clouds by ABCya. This app gave us an engaging way to practice conjugating these verbs  and allowed for the students to be creative at the same time. Here is an example of how it works:

First, enter the desired words separating each with a comma. For our little project, I asked each of my students to enter, "yo", then their names, followed by at least 5 verbs conjugated in the present tense to describe them. You could truly use the Word Clouds app though for any subject area in which the students have developed vocabulary!

Once students have finished typing, their cloud will appear. This is where the creative aspect starts. Students can change the color, layout and font as they choose. There is also a randomize button which allows them to scroll through different setups the app designs for them.

Once my students had a little fun with it, I asked them to eventually end on a black and white color scheme for printing purposes (we are not lucky enough to print student work in color). I then asked them to utilize the "save to photos" feature in the app to save their work and send it to me to print their finished product.

Backed them on some patterned scrapbook paper and voila. Verb cloud magic.

The Word Clouds app seems to be free for a limited time, so grab it while it's hot. Most I searched for did cost money, and I think overall this one is the most elementary student friendly anyhow!

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Wintery Pattern Block Fun

This week we combined the wintery elements outside our windows with our current unit on geometry for a little project fun.

We have been working our way through reviewing names of common polygons and exploring their attributes using pattern blocks. Thus, in working to take it one step further and embrace the season, I asked my students to make snowflake patterns by selecting at least three different shapes to use in their creation. 

The students traced the patterns on to a sheet of white computer paper with a pencil. They then retraced their finished product with a permanent marker and cut before gluing onto the blue background.

To take it one step further, they each wrote a paragraph about their snowflake. (We sneak writing in wherever we can, right?!) In the paragraph, they had to share the names and how many of each shape was included in their flakes.

And there you have it. Quick, fun project that incorporates math, writing, and the season!