Giveaway and Guest Bloggers

Since I’m currently enjoying my long-awaited Spring Break in my happy place (Breckenridge, Colorado), my friends Aylin and Amanda are guest blogging for me today.  But first, I want to give a quick shout out about my friend Kate’s giveaway, which is going on right now.  You can win any item from my TpT store along with several other awesome prizes, so be sure to check it out.

Guest Blog Post

Hi it's Aylin and Amanda from Learning to the Core!  Amanda teaches first grade and Aylin is a reading specialist who works with our kindergarteners and first graders.  We are so excited to guest blog on one of our favorite blogs!   Just like Kristin, we teach in 1:1 classrooms and love using the iPads and Macbooks that we have available to us.  

Today we wanted to share with you our....  

Top 3 Reasons Why We Love using Technology in our Classrooms!

1.  Differentiation
In the past, we have tried to get students working at their own ability level but have struggled with the management of it.  Now, each student has the opportunity to work at his/her own pace and level by using a combinations of iPads and laptops as a tool to learn.  

2. Engagement
In the past, it was difficult to keep students on task for the entire center time.  Now,  students stay engaged because they are excited to learn in a new way!  
3.  Instant Feedback
In the past, we faced the challenge as teachers of recognizing who understands new concepts and who is struggling.   As well as students not realizing when that they are practicing a skill incorrectly.  Now, the computer instantly provides feedback and can reteach a concept to help children be more successful.  

For more specific ideas on how to integrate technology into your classroom please visit us at Learning to the Core!  

Have a great day! 
Aylin and Amanda
Learning to the Core

Gooru- A New Free Search Engine for Learning

The tech coaches in my district recently introduced us to a new free educational search engine called Gooru.  Gooru has millions of videos, interactive displays, digital textbooks, quizzes, and more, on a variety of topics.  You can search by “collections” on particular topics to access educational resources that have been hand-picked by teachers and experts in the Gooru community.

I played around with Gooru a bit this week and made my own collection about human body systems, which we are studying in science.  However, it’s not necessary to register or create your own collections in order for your students to benefit from this site. 

Since my students are working in small groups to do research and present about a particular system, I had them start off by doing their own research on Gooru.  As you can see in the screen shot below, when they type in “Circulatory System,” they can search by resources, collections, or quizzes by clicking on the tabs.  They do NOT need a login to do this.

I would eventually like for my students to create their own Gooru accounts and start their own collections for future topics of study.  I feel we have barely brushed the surface and can see the potential for using Gooru as a learning tool, especially in my attempt to flip my classroom.

Click HERE for a short video introduction to Gooru.

Bringing the Beach into the Classroom and Surfing FREEBIE

In celebration of standardized testing being done and Spring Break rapidly approaching, I whipped up some beach-themed centers for my kids to use this week.  You can download this skip counting task card freebie by clicking the image below.:)

I have two versions of my latest beachy product—one with QR codes and one without.  Click either image to bring you to the item on TpT.

My kiddos used the QR version.  Here they are scanning their task cards using QRjournal.


Today is the first day of our Illinois Standard Achievement Tests A.K.A. ISATs.  For anyone else testing this week, good luck!  The kids will do great.:)

Here’s a simple little center we used last week to review mean, median, mode, and range for those of you in need of review activities.  Click the image to grab it for FREE.
The kids cut out each set of numbers (labeled A-D) and place them in sequential order.  Then they find the mean, median, mode, and range and record on the table.  I included a table with self-checking QR codes and one without.  I also included a table with explanations and examples of how to find mean, median, mode, and range that my kiddos kept next to them.