Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Students Reflect on Online Information

Mr. Gembicki's 8th Grade Language Arts class recently combined technology, collaboration and the Middle Years Programme Learner Profile and Areas of Interaction to get to the truth of information provided online. Students were asked to write a journal entry about what they read, write a poem or draw a picture about what they read. Students then reflected on the information they read. 

Google Apps for Education

Teachers and Students are finding many ways to use Google Apps for Education in the classroom. 6th Grade World Cultures shared comments on information they were reading about Latin America. Students could see what other students thought about the article and teachers, Ms. Reale and Ms. Bloch were able to comment on students questions. Students still learning English were able to translate the article in Spanish and participate in the discussion.

Mr. Gembicki and Ms. Morgan are using Google Docs to collect student assignments. Students can also email teachers with questions and help on assignments. A student that was absent from Ms. Morgan's class emailed her asking if he could do the class assignment on his computer.

Mr. Murphy's class used google docs to share presentations with the class. Students are able to create folders in google drive to collect their documents. The folder is shared with the teacher and the teacher can grade and comment on the assignment.

There are many more examples of students and teachers use of Google Apps for Education. Students like how easy it is to turn in their assignments and teachers like the ease of grading online papers.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

New Technology Inspires Teachers

The 2013-2014 school year is well under way and teachers and students are using technology in many different ways. Teachers started using Technology on the first day of school. Mr. Jayson Sherman, Spanish Teacher, used technology to introduce himself to students in a new and unique way. Using a Web tool called Blabberize, Mr. Sherman introduced himself to students in a memorable way.

Teachers began the school year creating social contracts with their students. These contracts set the classroom rules. Mrs.Vastano used a Mimio Teach System with students to create the contract. The contract is displayed on the whiteboard whenever the class needs to refer to it. This year Hernandez Middle School purchased enough Mimio Teach systems so every classroom teacher has the opportunity to create interactive lessons for their students. Look for future posts as teachers use their Mimio Teach systems with students.

This year RRISD introduced Google Apps for Education Accounts (GAFE) for all students in 2nd through 12th grade. These accounts will allow students to share documents with their teachers and with other students as they learn to collaborate with each other on projects and research. Students have practiced logging into their accounts and setting up folders to share with their teachers. I anticipate lots of posts involving Google applications.

The new school year promises to bring lots of new technology and transform classrooms at Hernandez Middle school into 21st century classrooms. Enjoy Mr. Shermann's greeting to his class.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Istation Helps Students with Reading

Students at Hernandez Middle School have been using Istation to improve their reading and vocabulary skills. Texas SUCCESS provides free and unlimited access to Istation Reading for Texas public school students in grades 3 through 8 — both in school and at home! Funding for the program is provided by the State of Texas. Parents interested in using Istation at home, should contact their Language Arts Teacher for information on how to install Istation at home and log in.

Multimedia 2 Classes Create Games

Mr. Lombardo's Multimedia 2 classses recently created their own games using Scratch programming. Scratch allows students to program their own interactive stories, games, and animations. Scratch helps students to think creatively, reason and work collaboratively. Scratch is a project of the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab and is free of charge. Games that students created their own versions of games such as Pac-Man, Frogger and others. Students spent time improving their games and helping each other with the Scratch progrramming.



Thursday, April 11, 2013

Popplet Popular with 6th Grade

Students in Mrs. Bloch's 6th Grade World Cultures Class recently used Popplet to organize their study of Africa. Popplet is a Web 2.0 tool that use boxes called popplets to record information and then organize the popplets to help students visualize what they are studying. Students were asked to choose four countries in Africa, one from each biome represented in Africa. Students had to find two geographic facts and two economic facts for each country. Students will be adding to their popplets as they learn more about Africa. Teachers with Popplet accounts collaborated with students in Mrs. Bloch's classroom and added their own Popplet on South Africa facts to share with students. Students were able to check back to see what information was added to their Popplet.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Students Chose Video for How To Project

7th Grade Language Arts students were asked to create a 'How to To" multi-media project. Students described how to bake, play a game, do a task and other tasks that involve step by step directions. Students used a variety of Technology to complete the assignment. Students used power point, word document with pictures and videos. Want to learn how to play Frisbee Golf? The video below will explain the ins and out of how the game is played.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Social Media in US History Class

Students in Mr. Gerhardstein and Mr. Jones US History classes recently used a Web 2.0 Tool, Fakebook to demonstrate their knowledge of US History events. Fakebook uses a Facebook like platform for students to create social media posts. Students used their creativity to design a conversation that George Washington, James Madison, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe might have had on a social media account such as facebook. Students created a profile, friends, posts and comments for their US History person. In the process of creating their posts, students had to demonstrate their knowledge of historical events.

Response Devices Popular with Teachers and Students

Teachers at Hernandez Middle School are using Turning Point Response Devices to find out just what their students know. Students benefit from using Turning Point Response Devices by getting instant feedback on warm ups, quizzes and even tests. Response devices allow teachers to gather instant data from their students that guide classroom discussions and inform teachers and students where gaps exist in learning as well as the misconceptions students may have in their learning.

Teachers using response devices include Andrea Pikas, 8th grade math and sixth grade Social Studies teachers, Natalie Reale, Jennifer Bloch and Jay Ferguson. Students in 6th grade Social Studies classes regularly review for tests with response devices and even take tests using the response devices. When used to take a test, students receive their grade as soon as they submit their test.

Sixth grade Math teachers Laura Terry and Jennifer Gregorcyk use response devices to check their students understanding of math. Seventh grade Language Arts teachers Ashley Stanley, Sofie Vastano and Julia Ross are using response devices during warm ups a the beginning of class. Also using response devices to generate class discussion and quiz students is Danielle Lacey, 6th grade Language Arts teacher.

Response devices have allowed teachers to gather data on their classes so they can tailor their teaching to meet their students needs.