Friday, July 13, 2012

Don't Forget, XtraNormal, and My Spinning Head :-)


Don't forget to visit my post from last week (you can find it here) and link up with ideas for the first day of school.  I've read some GREAT ones so far!  :-) 

In that same post, I mentioned

Last year, I only used it once (it was a HECTIC year) to show my students a video I had made concerning classroom rules and procedures.  They really enjoyed it and asked to see it again and again.  It ended up on my classroom website for their repeated viewing and so that those of them that had computers could share it with their parents.  The site runs on a points system, but here's where it becomes AWESOME (again, has not encouraged me to brag about them at all, and I'm receiving nothing extra for doing so).  The site is so teacher friendly.  If you e-mail them and let them know that you are a teacher, they give you FREE points!!!  When you run out...E-MAIL THEM AGAIN!!!  :-)  Amazing, right?! 

Here's a picture of a character I'm using in a movie I have started to make using their Celebz collection:

Once I tell my students that he brought them the iPad, how excited will they be?!
He of course belongs to stealing!!!  :-)
It is very easy to create these movies.  You choose the collection you want, set your background, and choose your characters.  You can add dialogue (spoken in robotic voices), sounds, and character movements (high fives, etc.).  
Anyway, is a great resource and so easy to use.  How will you use it in your classroom?

On to my spinning head.  :-)  Yesterday, I attended district training on our new math curriculum Investigations (in Number, Data, and Space). 

After using Envision for a few years, this is a HUGE change. The rationale behind using this program cannot be argued with: we are creating students who are skilled problem-solvers.  After attending the training, I'm more convinced than ever that the learning curve will be steep, but it will be well worth it.  I still have so many questions, many of which I cannot yet articulate.  Do you use Investigations?  How does it work in your classroom?   


Angi said...

We just switched to Envision last year. It was a huge change from what we were using in the past. It's much more advanced, but I think the last series was in the district for 5-7 years...maybe more than that even. How is Investigations different from Envision?

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