As many of you know, since 2014 I have been Teaching like a Pirate and in just three years I have expanded my collection with all the various books from the Burgess Consulting Company. However, the two I have been using a a lot over the last year have been: eXPlore like a Pirate and Play like a Pirate. The last few months I have been incorporating both into my STEAM Enrichment classes and my students can’t get enough. A couple of weeks ago I was in the LEGO Store and I came across their Brick Headz sets.
Continue reading “LEGO Brick Headz as a Biography”
It was April of 2014, I was just a month and a half from completing my second year at Christian Life Schools and something happened. I felt burnt out. I had barely been in education for almost four years and I remember sitting in my office. I was fixing a few forgotten gmail passwords and was told on twitter: “You have to do something else with your App Dice, they are getting boring.” I had no other major planned classroom lessons happening until close to May 1st and I had just sent off my clean up for iPads for classrooms and final eRate quotes to be reviewed and I looked at my blog and went: “What can I do?” “What is the point, if I’m not in the classroom.” “I’m just another tech guy with no classroom and nothing better to do.” “I’m not good enough to do anything innovative or new.” Then I had Barbara Gruener point me towards a guy named, Dave Burgess and his book, Teach like a Pirate.
Continue reading “How Teach like a Pirate changed my practice as an Educator”
Been awhile since I did a simple post on some cool exciting tools you can try in your classroom. I have two IOS and one great universal tools you can use with your students right now.
Continue reading “Great New Tools and Apps to use in your Classroom this April”
A few weeks ago, I was on my Perler Bead Facebook Groups and our latest challenge was creating Fidget Spinners. The Fidget Spinner has been around for a while, the spinner works on a simple premise where you have to put it on one finger then use your other hand to keep it going. It also works perfectly for killing time when you’re bored waiting for someone, or chilling out for something to happen. They have become the norm in schools to the point they can also create a unique oppurtunity for STEM and STEAM lessons and projects. Continue reading “STEAM with Fidget Spinners”
A few days ago, I was exploring some new hashtags I had been seeing on Twitter and Google+ and I had noticed that they had really caught on in the social media community. However, there were two that had several postings, but weren’t being used by others much. I actually reached out to one of them saying it was a cool new community reach. They said; “You are the first one to respond to it.” “I’ve been doing it for close to eight months now, but I’m keeping it alive.” I also responded that I have started a few myself and only two have really caught on in the last few years. They then asked me, why we still do it. Which was a really good question.
Continue reading “When you are a Hashtag of One”
Are you a Pinterest user? Do you Pin for the Win!? I have been a fair user of Pinterest since 2011. Many of my ideas, resources and hobby loves are on Pinterest (and Educlipper). Most recently, Pinterest introduced Lens BETA on the mobile app. Well, this came at the perfect time for me. I finally got new carpeting in our family room (The previous one was awful), thanks to my in-laws. The Pinterest Lens went live in the App store about an hour before our carpet layer came in. I started flashing the lens at various spots in my clutter house and I couldn’t believe the searches and finds that Lens could do and I knew I had to find a way to integrate this into the classroom. So how does it work?
Continue reading “The Pinterest Adventure”
If you have noticed the last few weeks, I have not completed an entry on my blog here. I was asked online why I hadn’t posted at least a quick App review. I told them it was a time factor and I didn’t just want to do just a post for the sake of having a post. Just recently, I was reading Lead like a Pirate (yeah, another pirate book). Something that both Shelly and Beth mentioned was about sharing what you do in the classroom with the outside world. Creating something that wants your teachers and your students to want to beat down the doors to get into your classroom or school. In the last five years I have been writing here on Dice UP the Classroom, I have hoped I have been making those types of posts. Something I always love writing about on this blog is lessons that I can share with other teachers both pre and in-service and administrators who can use my posts to help bring something awesome to their students and staff.
Continue reading “Writing about what is Important to You”
For those who don’t know, Tara Martin a few months ago started Booksnaps. The idea of #BookSnaps was by documenting key takeaways between face-to-face meetings and adding them to our “Snap Story” for daily viewing using Snapchat or related apps. This allows the reader to connect an idea or thought by creating a digital visual representation. The visual representation solidifies the text content within the mind and signals the brain to retrieve the idea from memory. Something I have been doing since Booksnaps was publically revealed and I have been trying to do various Booksnaps with my students using Seesaw. Going back about another month before that, Quinn Rollins, Mr. Play like a Pirate himself, talked about using Funko Pop! for biographies. The idea behind Funko Pop! figures are creating simple biographies of characters they’re learning about in class. Historic figures, great inventors, characters in novels — anything in your curriculum that has a human in it. Continue reading “Booksnaps and Funko Pop!”
Since starting Robot Edu, I have been trying to think of new and inventive ways to use gamification and centers with our various robots for our students. A week ago, my instructional coach, Joe Sloan and I came up with using coding cards for our students to use with Ozobots. The concept works pretty simply:
Continue reading “Ozobot Coding Cards”
A few days ago, I was on my Perler Beads Facebook and a member, Juan Diaz came up with this fantastic idea of making a Link from The Legend of Zelda raising a heart with mini perler beads and then place them in a jar for display. So many of us just loved the idea, and of course I knew I had to come up with a great way to use this idea in the classroom.
Continue reading “Perler Bead STREAM jars”