Friday, June 15, 2012

Websites for Preschoolers

If you have tried searching for quality sites for Preschoolers, you might share some of my frustrations with what is out there. Many sites are a challenge for little guys to navigate or are overloaded with distracting ads; over the past couple years I have found some great sites that are age appropriate, academic focused, and easy to navigate. These sites have helped my preschoolers to develop skills like clicking & dragging, using arrows, letters, and numbers on the keyboard, and basic web navigation skills like clicking on an arrow to go back a page or "X" to exit out from an activity. Here are some of my (and my students) favorite:

Poisson Rouge (aka Red Fish)

KipTown (Also in Spanish)

Aven's Corner (some activities require the SilverLight plugin)

Game Goo

PBS Kids Sprout

Curious George's Busy Day

TVO Kids for ages 2-5

Tonka and Friends PlaYard

Funbrain Playground

Thursday, June 14, 2012

48 Summer Sites for Kids and Teachers

Looking for some great sites for kids this summer? Here are 48 great sites for kids compiled by Ed Tech Ideas. It has everything from reading and math to science and geography. I have used a number of the sites listed in the classroom including ReadWriteThink, Cool Math, ABCya!, and Kerpoof. A couple new sites I am excited to review this summer and use in the fall are Academic Skill Builders and Story Jumpers.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Computer Lab Bulletin Board Ideas

Even though summer is only 5 school days away, I am already starting to think about next fall. I am slated to teach elementary computers again and due to the limited supplies available on my tiny island I need to plan in advance for any creative bulletin board ideas I want to put up in August. 

For the 2011-12 school year, I opted for a bulletin board that highlighted the home row keys and proper hand/finger placement while typing. I purchased square plates at The Dollar Tree and made color coded letters to go on the "keys". The color coding matches a set of printed card stock keyboards that I have for my little guys when I first introduce the home row keys(on a side note, I put a thick line of liquid glue on the F and J keys, once it dries it mimics the bumps on a real keyboard). On the bulletin board, I underlined the home row keys and also put a split down the middle to help designate right hand keys from left hand keys. I use my wall-sized keyboard as a teaching tool, as well as when Kindergartners have trouble locating letters, I show them on the big keyboard.

The keyboard I created for the 2011-12 school year.

While I plan to keep this bulletin board up, I have 2 smaller ones that I want to redo. Here are some of the ideas I am considering:

A technology word wall
This one is sorted by grade level.
This one is color coded by categories (internet terms, hardware, desktop functions).
This BB has terms that are specific to the internet.
 Computer Shortcuts

Computer Hardware

Other Bulletin Board Ideas

This would be a great bulletin board to display student work.
I was thinking something like this would be cute and have the kids design what they think a "computer bug" looks like.

UPDATE(May 21, 2013): Here are a few Bulletin Boards/Posters in my current Computer Lab.

This is my Keyboard Shortcuts Bulletin Board. If you are looking for a shortcuts set, but don't have the time. I have made this set available in my Teachers Pay Teachers Store for $3.00.

I also have several reminder posters up in my lab to help students. Three of the posters in the top row were created by me and are available in my Teachers-Pay-Teachers store.

One last thing, here is a Bulletin Board that I created that compares data storage for students.

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