Top 10 Ways to Tech Like a Pirate


Starting in January, I’m kicking of “Tech Like a Pirate” where you I talk about several ways you integrate technology into your classroom while you Teach Like a Pirate. To get things kicked off, I have made a Top 10 list or in a way kind of a top 40 list to show you what Apps work the best with all the Pirate Hooks. So, let the fun begin.

1. You. Yes, you. Who knows what tech to use in their classroom the best but you the teacher. What programs do you use every day? Do you have a digital camera? How do you use it when you use your Hooks with your students? Its all up to you and you are the best way to Tech Like a Pirate.

2. Your students. Students known how to use tech in ways we don’t know or haven’t used before. When you see a student using technology when you are Teaching Like a Pirate. Have them lead a lesson or project, they will surprise you.

3. The App Hook. Yes, here are the Hooks and what Apps I have found that work the best with them.

Teaser Hook: One of the best ones I have found is with iBanner for IOS and either PowerPoint or Google Slides. You can get students with a flashing: “Coming Today… Trees!” or having a simple phrase or image appear in front of the class. Either way, you can you use the Teaser Hook.

Mozart Hook: Music can be done several ways. If you want your students to create their own music, using Apps like Garageband or Piano Board work the best with students making their own music.

Student Direct Hook: This is where App Dice come in great use. Put a list of creation and productivity Apps on it and roll it. Everything from iMovie to Stick Around a student can direct any lesson or project with a roll of the die.

Board Message Hook: Padlet is one of the best as it works as a perfect digital builtin board for you and or your students to post thoughts, links, brainstorm and more and its free!

The Contest Hook: Heard of Kahoot! The universal quiz game where you can create a quiz game for student review or quizzes. Give it a try today, its easy to use and your students will love using it.

Life-Changing Lessons Hook: Any camera App does this. What do you see when you are starting your day? What have you downloaded from an old picture? Doesn’t matter but I will guarantee you when you take a picture it truly is worth a 1,000 words.

Costume/Props Hook: I have found taking a picture and using Pic Collage or Google Draw can take a normal picture of you and dress you up as any character from history or making you look like a superhero works the best. Especially if you don’t have costumes and props to use in class. This way you can dress up as anything and tell a story. Speaking of which….

Story Teller Hook: This is where a sketch Apps works great, my best suggestions are Paper or Notability but create a story using digital drawing tools and colors and record your voice over it telling a story of what the sketch notes are about. If you are talking bout the voyage of Magellan or about Sir Francis Drakes voyage. Your students can show how they understand and tell a story just from doodles as a report.

The Interior Designer Hook: I love using Green Screen App with this. Assemble your own classroom and then put yourself in it using Green Screen and describe your ideal classroom and what is in it.

Student Hobby Hook: Simple Google Search works here, have your students do a search on their favorite hobbies and talk about why people love this hobby and why they love it.

Craft Hook: Going back to Pic Collage. Have students assemble a set of pictures to make a pair of goggles or power bracelets and then air print and have students print out, clip and assemble.

Safari Hook: Heard of Skype? Heard of Mystery Skype? Its when you use Skype with other classrooms and the classroom that you talk to give you clues on where they are. Have students search and find information to figure out where they are.

Involved Audience Hook: Using Nearpod create an interactive powerpoint where students can answer questions in real time, create sketches and complete assignments with just a swipe of the screen.

Backwards Hook: I used Stick Around for this once where I gave students a completed puzzle and they had to recreate the puzzle backwards. They had to figure out how the puzzle was assembled and what images were used. It shows students creative process and how to do research.

The Tech Wiz Hook: Using a Random Selector App from Google to IOS. Put a list of lessons in a random selector and then have students create the lesson or project from whatever they can but it has to involve tech. Maybe they will create a piano from a Makey Makey. Maybe they will create a Thinglink using Google Drive. Let students create.

Real World Hook/Taboo Hook: Google+ works here, just set up a classroom Google+ and set it to real world events that reflect current events or what is going on in the world. This way depending on your school can also talk about their thoughts on it. That way you can easily switch right to Kidblog and Quadblog from your Google+ account to talk these events and how they feel.

The Mystery Bag Hook: I love using Random Name Selector here with a set of various projects or ideas hidden in a hat. Just press on the button and a name is drawn. Pro version you have images. You never know what is going to come out for the class.

The Dance Drama Hook: Using Apps like Tellagami to create a digital avatar, have students create their avatars and create a drama play and then App Smash it with a music App like Video Star or iMovie.

The Mime Hook: I’ve used Puppet Pals for this one. Have your puppet do an auction or perform a show and students have to guess what the the puppets are trying to tell.

The Chef Hook: Want students to put together a step by step creation. Use Thinglink and have students each add their own step to creating a lesson. One I would try is have students try to create the perfect cup of hot chocolate. Have students post in a Thinglink their ingratiates and then at the end, the teacher takes the finished class recipe and makes the hot chocolate from the Thinglink.

People Prop Hook: Here is where Book Creator comes in. Have students one by one create an auction using themselves as props to create a page in a story. Then put together the images into Book Creator and then have each of the those students write out what was going on in those pages. Then have a final editing to put the flow to story together within the pages. Then publish the story. Teaches students creation, story telling and editing.

Mnemonic Hook: This is where Google Draw comes back. Have students create digital sketch notes to remember their lessons and projects. They will associate images and ideas to help them learn.

The Piacasso Hook: Create a Google Doc where Students put together a complete lesson from brain storm to story creation. It will be student art!

Swimming with the Sharks Hook: Time to blog not only use Kidblog but then share with other schools using Quadblog. What do other classrooms think of your projects? What do you think about other classes besides your own. Want to go another step? After sharing on Quadblog use a Google Hangout to have an open discussion between classrooms and pros and cons.

Mission Impossible Hook: Time to get your augmented reality Apps like Aurasma or 4Q. Can you take any of your lessons and projects and make them truly come to life. Time to talk about the Civil War but you need each of your papers or creations spring to life through videos or you the student or teacher dressed up being the character. Anyone can do theatre but can you make a true Living Wax Museum? This will do it.

Extra Credit Hook: This is where a cloud folder like Dropbox, Copy, Google Drive come in handy. Have an open folder the class can access. Have them put in anything they can think of using any Apps they have. Great for Genius Hour and self directed learning.

The Opportunist Hook: You have instant messaging on your devices. Go, what does your students want to learn? How do they want to learn? Just instant message and go!

Reality TV Hook: Students can use any recording and they must talk about what is going on in their school. Is there a recycling drive? A fundraiser, have them film, edit and share.

Kinesthetic Hook: Get your Pandora playing at random and have students move to the groove. From rock and roll to slow and relaxing. What does the music make you want to do?

Amazing Magic Hook: Back to an Get your Chatterpix or Blabberize Apps ready and make a basketball talk about the rules of the game or turn a box into a pirate sailing off into adventure. These Apps turn a simple object into a talking 3D person.

4. Ok, now that number three is done. Let’s move onto Minecraft Edu. Great thing about Minecraft is the sandbox ability to create and do whatever you want with your class. Want to create the utopian school project. You can build it from the parking lot to functioning lockers. Want to recreate colonial times and how people lived? Create it all in Minecraft.

5. QR Code it. Quick Read codes allow you and your student to scan images and have everything from websites to movies play. Create a QR Scavenger Hunt or create digital puzzles to assemble and give clues to the next piece to assemble and turn in.

6. Edmodo: Flip your classroom and go digital. Forget paper and pencil and use Edmodo’s programs and digital tools to teach your students. Don’t want to use Edmodo? Use Google Classroom and go paperless.

7. Its Wearable: I’m seeing more and more classrooms getting Google Glass, Pebble Watches or are going to be early adaptors of Apple Watches. You can do almost anything with these devices. Give real time feedback on assignments or answer questions. Record and search with a simple look. Give out morris code or track your Safari hooks without doing anything else but wear a watch.

8. App Dice: Something I love using is my App Dice and allowing such random selection with the Apps you can use at any given moment. Just roll and App Smash the Apps that come up or have students present a project in several different ways by rolling dice. Give it a try.

9. Groove Book: Love using Instagram and taking pictures of everything but have a problem when it comes to having a hard copy at a good price? For $3 you can take 100 pictures and put them together in an easy assemble booklet that you can use then to create collages, scrapbooks or presentations.

10. Get Social: There are tons of social platforms out there but you know what will work best for your students. Blog, text, tweet, Google+. When you open your students to the world, learning and collaboration happens.


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