Monday, December 12, 2016

Why Not Become a Google Certified Educator

As an educator it is always important to continue to learn as a student.  We should model what we expect from our students as much as we can.  They often look to us for inspiration and motivation to do things that they may never attempt without our help.  Many of you already integrate the G Suite of tools into your every day instruction, why not make it official with a certification?  What a great way to remind you of always being a student.  Google offers Google Certified Educator Level 1 and Educator Level 2 certifications.  Follow these links for online training you can complete for free and then register to take the test online.  Contact me at jphale@taylorisd.org if you would like to learn more.



Friday, December 2, 2016

Online Writing Tools for Students

Are you trying to get your students to improve their writing skills?  Here are some great resources you should share with them and see what they can do.
  1. Pic Lits- PicLits.com is a creative writing site that matches beautiful images with carefully selected keywords in order to inspire you. The object is to put the right words in the right place and the right order to capture the essence, story, and meaning of the picture.
  2. Big Huge Labs- This site contains many tools that you can use for writing and vocabulary lessons.
  3. Comic Creator- The Comic Creator invites students to compose their own comic strips for a variety of contexts. The organizers focus on the key elements of comic strips by allowing students to choose backgrounds, characters, and props, as well as to compose related dialogue.
  4. StorybirdStorybird is a unique language arts tool. Use illustrations to inspire students to write stories: picture books for K-5, longform chapter books for Grades 5-9, and poetry for everything in-between.
  5. The Story Starter- Have no idea what to write about?  Give this a try.