Thursday, February 14, 2013

Techie Thursday

Happy Valentine's Day!  I hope everyone survived the chaos of class parties and loved every minute of the big smiles all over your students faces!

Lauren and I love incorporating technology into our classrooms, so we decided we are going to try and do Techie Thursdays.  We want to share with you resources we have found and are excited for you all to give us new techie things to try as well! 

Any teacher who teaches the little ones knows how hard it can be for your students to find specific websites during computer time.  I was sometimes always getting interrupted during my guided reading groups by students who could not find what they were looking for at the computers.  Then I learned about a fantastic website called symbaloo! This is a FREE website where you can create a web mix that uses picture icons to show bookmarks of different websites.  This was the perfect solution to my problem! You can create your own page or use one that is already made.  Once you have made your web mix or found one that works for you, you can set it as the homepage on your student computers.  It is super easy to set up and navigate.  

And because I just couldn't help myself I have one more techie resource for ya.  Have you guys ever heard of Class Dojo??  Who ever thought of this is pure genius!  It is a FREE behavior management system that teachers can use in their classroom to track positive and negative behaviors.  Each child gets their own avatar with a fun little monster they can choose.  When students are showing positive behavior you can go in and give them a point and with negative behavior you take a point away.  I have found this tool most effective when I am teaching small groups and my other students are working independently.  I will keep our class page up on the projector and am able to give or take away points from the class dojo app on my phone.  When a child is on task I will click their avatar and give them a point based on their positive behavior.  A chime goes off and the students avatar and positive behavior pop up on the screen.  If a student is showing a negative behavior then another noise occurs and it shows up on the screen.  I love that it is instant feedback to the kids.  I swear they all immediately stop what they are doing to look and see if they got a point given to them or taken away.  The ones who got a point taken away, quickly get back on task so they can earn their points back.  I love that I do not have to interrupt my small group or call over any of my students to talk with them about their misbehavior.  Another awesome feature of Class Dojo is that parents can sign up and get notifications of their child's behavior.  Some of them have even started using the tool at home!

The best part about these resources is that they are free and everyone loves a freebie.  Check them out and see if they would work for your classroom! 

TGTIF! (thank goodness tomorrow is Friday ☺)


  1. Cute blog you have here! :) Did I see you mentioned Cleveland? I'm an Ohio gal too! :)

    I've heard good things about Class Dojo. One of my coworkers just went to a Tech Conference in Columbus and learned some great new tools to put in the pocket ;)

    First Grade and Fabulous

  2. We are all from OHIO??? YAY!
    I teach in Oregon and live in Toledo!
    I love your reference about Class Dojo! I just posted last week about it and my first graders are gobbling it up! Makes this dear teacher happy!
    Happy to be a new follower!!
    Ms. Marciniak's First Grade Critter Cafe