Friday, November 30, 2012

iPad Lesson: Solids, Liquids, and Gasses with PicCollage

I used the PicCollage App (FREE) with my 2nd grade classes to assess the students' knowledge of  the states of matter: solids, liquids, and gasses.  I spent two 45 minute sessions working with the 2nd grade classes and their teachers to model this lesson.  Before I worked with the classes, the students had prior knowledge of the states of matter.

In the first session, the students gathered pictures directly through the PicCollage App using by the "Photos from Web" tool.  The students chose two pictures to represent each of the categories.  In the second session, the students added all the labels, a title, and a background.  Then, with teacher assistance, the finished projects were emailed to the teacher.

The students really enjoyed creating the PicCollage poster projects.  The projects were then published to the teachers' websites, but if you wanted to print the posters you could (I would recommend removing dark backgrounds to save on ink). 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

How to Connect Your iPad to Your SMARTboard

Updated 9/13/16

When you are teaching with iPads in the classroom you will want to share you iPad screen with the students to model apps and to share student work.  There are several ways to do this:

Direct connection:
 Purchase a VGA Connector (Dongle) that directly connects the iPad to the SMARTboard through the existing VGA connection that you usually use to connect your computer. 
Pros: Quick to connect anywhere, anytime.
Cons: You have limited mobility and the cords disconnect easily.
Apple VGA Connector

Mirroring Apps: Reflection and AirServer
Purchase a mirroring app that will wirelessly stream the apps, images, videos, and audio from your phone, iPod, or iPad onto your computer, which you can then display on your SMARTboard.
Pros: Lets you freely walk around and use your iPad to teach while presenting.
Cons: May require some setup and permissions by school level tech departments because of firewalls.  Only works with iPad2+.
Reflector and Air Server

Apple TV:
The Apple TV mirrors your iPad to your SMARTboard wirelessly through the projector so you can stream apps, images, videos, and audio.
Pros: Lets you walk around and freely use your iPad to teach.  Portable and can be shared with other teachers.
Cons: Expensive, may need an extra converter (HDMI to VGA) to work, and tech help may be needed to connect.
Apple TV

For a few more ways to connect, check out: 4 Easy & Secure Ways to Record Screen Videos on iPhone or iPad: A Comparative Guide

Pinteresting EdTech Teachers

I have been pinning so much over this Thanksgiving break that I decided to give thanks to the Pinterest pinners that I get the most inspiration from.  These are educators that put effort into pinning about educational technology.  Of course, I think my boards are pretty awesome and you are welcome to follow me with my link on the side bar, but no pinner becomes awesome without those they steal pins from!

Here are my favorite Top 10 educational technology pinners.  Do you know more great pinners?  Add them in the comments below!

1. Erin Klein: Bio: I'm a second grade teacher in Michigan. I love finding fun ways to incorporate technology into the classroom. I enjoy blogging and traveling!  She also runs the blog Kleinspiration at

2. Sue Gorman: Bio: Apple Distinguished Educator, Apple Academy Attendee, District Technology Coordinator, iPad Enthusiast, Blessed :)

3. Tami Brewster: Bio: I am a self professed nerd or geek! I love infusing my classroom with technology and help mold the minds of tomorrow's leaders. I am an ADE Apple Distinguished Educator and honored to be one.

4. Tina Wahlert: Bio: I am an education consultant for Green Hills Area Education Agency. I assist districts with professional development and school improvement.

5. Sharon Matney: Bio: Librarian and Mom. Searching for all things creative, yummy, trendy, fun, tech, and nerdy!

6. Richard Byrne: Bio: Teacher, Speaker, Advocate for technology in classrooms. Google Certified Teacher.

7.  Cyndi Danner-Kuhn: Bio: Ed Tech, Faculty-Kansas State University, Apple Professional Development Specialist.

8. David Kapuler: Bio: I'm the author of the award nominated Ed Tech blog, Technology Tidbits. I also do education consulting and social media on the side.

9. Lisa Johnson (techchef4u): Bio: Ed Tech Specialist 4 Eanes ISD, Appaholic, Apptivity Author, Social Geek, iPad Evangelist, Blogger, MOPS Mom, Caffeine Dependent. For all things TechChef4u, visit

10. Margaret A Powers: Bio: Passionate educator and tech entrepreneur working as a Technology and Education Consultant. I specialize in social media, early childhood & global education.
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