Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Digital Journey Part 2 #SOL15

I'm attempting to participate in the Slice of Life Challenge, and since this post is on a Tuesday and happens to be Tech related, I'm also linking up with my friend Cheryl for Tech Tip Tuesday. I encourage everyone to visit both linkups to read more. 

In Part 1 of My Digital Journey I learned what a blog was; got onto Facebook; and created, then abandoned, a Twitter account.

I was beginning to explore learning resources online. I learned about Starfall. I got a bit obsessed with Cool Math. Have you played Bloxorz? Brick Breaking? Gems Swap? Phit? I swear they are all thinking games. They grow dendrites! (It was bad...) I discovered Hooda Math, Internet4Classrooms, ReadWriteThink, and Fun4thebrain.

Now I had a problem. I had tons of resources, but it was impossible to put them to good use! It was a royal pain to try to get all these sites bookmarked onto the computers in my classroom. Once they were bookmarked, I had no way to teach the kids how to use them all. The kids couldn't read the bookmarks, and they couldn't read all the options once they got to an approved site, so they couldn't navigate at all. It was so frustrating!

Then 3 big things happened:

1. I began to use online bookmarking.
2. My principal got an InFocus and ELMO for every classroom.
3. I learned how to make a class website on Weebly.

I began using Diigo to bookmark the pages I was discovering. At the time this was amazing. I was able to switch between school and home computers so much more easily. I still have my account, but it's pretty much just sitting there. Does anyone have any tips? Should I just abandon it, or is it worth learning to use effectively? 

Finally, I was able to bring up a game or website on my computer and do a demonstration for my class. I was able to show videos! LIFE CHANGING! 

Using my class Weebly page I was able to put all the links I wanted my students to have access to on the same webpage. Now I could just bookmark my class website on all the computers and teach my students how to navigate from there. I could even share it with parents and kids could access it at home! So exciting! (Feel free to visit and use my class website. Like everything else, it ought to be updated, but I'm still using it.)

The key to making my class webpage a success was my use of screen shots. Since most of the kids can't read in the beginning of the year, I needed pictures to help them navigate. Honestly, whenever I don't take a screen shot for a while I forget how to do it. Never fear. Google is always there! If you're thinking, that would be a handy dandy skill to have, I found this easy tutorial for Windows, and How-to-Take-a-Screenshot.org can help you take a screen shot on anything.

Finally I was finding effective ways to use the web professionally! Come back soon for 

One of my friends helped me get started with my Weebly page, then I figured out most of it through trial and error. If you're interested, here are some nice tutorials I've come across recently:

(By the way, Symbaloo appears to be very similar to what I was creating with screenshots.)

If you found this post to be interesting or fun, I'd love for you to connect with me!

Follow on Bloglovin

NVF Signature photo nvfblogsignature_zpsbdbf4a05.png


  1. There's a lot of great information here! I use the old fashioned portaportal for bookmarks for kids-they have an easy time finding stuff, but I like the photo images of websites you feature.

  2. There's a lot of great information here! I use the old fashioned portaportal for bookmarks for kids-they have an easy time finding stuff, but I like the photo images of websites you feature.

  3. Sounds like you are on your way! Love using my class website to help the kids get to other sites as well. I teach them how to type in "Swamp Frog Kids" and find our site from any search engine. They love choosing where to put the links on "their" class blog now too...Thanks for sharing about your journey!
    Mrs. Samuelson's Swamp Frogs

  4. What an incredible resource you are for your school, your colleagues, your students - WOW! I am really impressed!

  5. I love reading about the exciting things you are doing. If I was still in a classroom, I'd be following you and taking advice!

  6. Thanks for linking up again! You have so many resources and ideas. That's how I felt when I was in grad school. I kept learning about all these things I wanted to try but I never had enough time. I say, if you find it stressful to try to keep up with everything, pick one thing at a time. Once that becomes a routine, you can add something else if you feel ready.

    Techie Turtle Teacher


Please tell me what this post made you think about! I love to hear from readers, and I always try to respond.