Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Get Some Rhythm in Your Room: Flocab

A Quick Intro to Flocabulary
Created by Allison Schalk, Digital Learning Coach, Lanesville Schools

I started using Flocabulary 10 years ago when the SAT vocabulary book had first hit the market.  I still rock the 10 year old black tshirt with orange print and 'Shakespeare is Hip Hop' on the back.  By the way, I would love a new Flocab tshirt.  Having taught in 3 very different types of schools, my students have always loved Flocab.  Even better for me, they remember it.

Truly, think about it.  How many first pages of books can you recite?  Now, how many sets of song lyrics do you know by heart?  It's just easier.  This is how our students' minds work, too.

Now that Flocab has been expanded to different subject areas and grades with so many attached resources, I am sharing it with my corporation for them to hop on board.  Last year, we had an account for all of the middle and high students for English.  We are now trying a full corporation trial run, and you can try it, too.

By the way, I am totally not a part of the Flocab team AT ALL; I just have seen my students write with these words, read current events, and talk about it outside of the classroom.  Years later, my students stop in to rap with the newest group because they still remember it.  That's powerful.

What is Flocab?

Flocabulary is an interactive, multi-disciplinary source of fun songs, raps, and videos to teach and explore a ton of different subject areas.  The content is there; it is just set to music to make it easy for the kids to remember.  It also provides lots of different resources inside the raps to learn more about the topic!

Songs and Videos:
All subject areas and all grades are available.  The raps are separated by grade level and basic skills for you to be able to see what would be of most use to you.

For example, if I click on ‘Science,’ it will separate the raps and songs based on the grade level at which that skill is traditionally taught.  So, I clicked on ‘Elementary’ and these options appeared.
What is available to use for each rap?
While some of the specific activities available vary by the rap, most of the basic ones are available for all raps.
These features include Video, Quick Review, Interactive Lyrics, Fill-in-the-Blank,Quiz, Lesson Plans, and Printable Activities.  

Can students submit quizzes digitally to me?
Yes! If we select Flocabulary, we can give students individual accounts and their comprehension check will send directly to you.  You can even see which questions they missed compared with the rest of your class.

Try the Week in Rap
Every Friday a new rap is made to talk about the current events of the past week.  When you click on the ‘Interactive Lyrics’ Tab, each current event contains a little nonfiction piece explaining the event with more resources to learn more.  

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Link your Google Calendar into your Google Site!

Many teachers are moving to a Google Sites in order to communicate with parents and students easily and more efficiently.  A great way to do this is to embed your school calendar into your website.  You won't have to update it in more than one place--once you update it in calendars, it will automatically update to your site.  Plus, it will automatically go from month to month, so no need to post a new calendar for a new unit or new month--this will do it for you.

So, you want to insert your calendar?

Go to your google site and get to the page on which you plan on placing your calendar.

Click on the little pencil/pen in the upper right corner to enable editing of your site.

Place your curser in the spot you would like your calendar.

Go to Insert--Calendar.

Select the calendar you would like inserted.  If you want to change the name of it, you can do this here as well to give it a title.

Select save.

Then, save the site itself once you are back in it.

If you want to center your calendar to the page, just click the Center Alignment icon above the calendar.  Then save again!

There you have it! Simple.  Easy.  Ready to go!