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Integrating Technology

This set of guidelines helps outline best practices in integration, where technology is used as a tool to enhance the teaching and learning experience. When designing classroom activities that utilize computers, it’s important to focus on the pedagogy, not the computer skill. As the following outline indicates, pre-teaching and utilizing planning materials like graphic organizers help improve the process. This information will help teachers that are just beginning the process of using technology to help the students learn in new ways.

Technology Integration in Ten Easy Steps
1.   Determine unit goals from core curriculum content area
2.   Formulate curriculum content area objectives – What do I want students to be able to do?(Bloom’s Taxonomy)
3.   Construct assessment – Determine finished product, which software will be used, and rubric criteria
4.   Design activity, process, and specific instructional strategies
5.   Look at the National Technology Standards to match the activity to the standards
6.   Prepare and photocopy worksheets or graphic organizer for each student
7.   Introduce concept in class. Pre-teaching in content area should be thorough enough for students to completely understand what is expected of them
8.   If appropriate, use projector to introduce technology tools in class before students come to the lab. This maximizes the time with the computer.
9.   When students are in the lab or with their laptops, support them with content area. Facilitate students working collaboratively and helping each other with the technology. You’ll quickly find student experts who can show their classmates what buttons to push and which strategies work with the software and hardware.
10.  Provide opportunity to share with authentic audience.
If you are looking for new ways to integrate technology into the curriculum, search these extremely high quality educational databases.

For a more in-depth look at designing units that infuse technology, you’ll find unit planning guidelines here.

Project Ideas Using Software and Web Applications

As we integrate technology into our teaching and learning environment, we must focus on the learning experiences on the student and less on the use of productivity software. The following lists use common software in ways that are creative and integrate into the curriculum learning objectives. As one becomes proficient in the use of a particular software, it become easier to develop creative ways to use it with students. Most school districts have a set of expectations of student proficiency in basic programs. It is extremely important that students use the computer as a tool to communicate information that is authentic, directly related to what their learning, and connected to real life as they learn and develop their own skill in software programs.
PowerPoint (not presentation), Word
Student creates a graphic, or uses graphics from clip art and types the text using word processing toolAdd a chapter to a book or story
On-line websites that have a story and the students can click on a box to add to it, blogging or wiki applications

Art Exhibit
Take digital pictures and drop into PowerPoint, add narration and/or music

Audio recording/podcast
Garage Band, web
Record voice, add sound effects and/or music for a podcast

iMovie, PowerPoint with narration, Garage Band
Commonly known as “digital story telling”

PowerPoint (creating a certificate)

Web resources such as, Fact Monster or other history web sites, Word for essay, iMovie to create a narrated movie with images, web page, PowerPoint for narrated slide show with image
Also could be considered “digital story telling”, for younger students create a poster with a picture and facts

Use Classblogmeister to set up a class blog

Book Report
PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool), Word
Use visual representation

PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool)
Commemorate a special event or a topic

Microsoft Word
Younger students need a template so the layout is correct

Character Study
Inspiration, PowerPoint, Word
Create a web with characteristics and events from the story, diamonte poem

Excel, also can copy into Word to add paragraph explaining data
Changes over time, comparison of data, collect data for science, social studies

Word using bullets

Classroom Museum
Floor plan of museum exhibit using PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)
Collect artifacts from primary source websites, write about “exhibits”

Class Book
PowerPoint, each child creates one slide
Ideas for topics include our community, famous people, vocabulary (math or other subject),

Images from web, digital camera, PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)

Comic Book
ReadWriteThink website has template for students to create comic strip, also utilize speech bubbles tool in Microsoft Word or PowerPoint

Access image of actual constitution from American Memories Website, create using AppleWorks or PowerPoint with large clipart as a background

Microsoft Word

Email, Word

Paint, and PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)
Create coupons with kind deeds for holidays

Design Proposal
Blank PowerPoint slide for floor plans and graphics, PowerPoint for presentation, iMovie for video
Geography study project: students select a region and create a proposal for a resort

Locate images on web and shrink and manipulate in paint

iMovie, PowerPoint
Use Library of Congress resources to download images, videos, and music

Editorial Essay
Word, web based blog to share and get input from others

iMovie to create a videotape of the “eulogizer” – pretend memorial service

Word, Web sites with fables from around the world

Family Tree
Inspiration, Kidspiration

PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool),

Floor Plan
PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool),
Use with a descriptive paragraph or for a math activity to show scale

Flow Chart
Inspiration, PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool)

Create game pieces using images from the internet or PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool),  written
directions on Word

Word, video tape and edit in iMovie

Journey Log
Web based blog, Word with images borrowed from the web

Last Will & Testament
Word using scroll type clip art as background

Google maps, PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool)
Done as a reading comprehension activity after reading Maniac Magee, also to review ordinal directions

Math Story
PowerPoint (not as presentation tool), Kidspiration
Illustrate a typed math story with clipartMemoir
Word, or web based blog, also could video tape family member, or use scanner to scan images and integrate into written essay
6th grade project: use scanned images of student throughout their life along with images of world events to create a video timeline

PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool)

PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool)

Multimedia Show
iMovie, PowerPoint

Museum Exhibit
Floor plan of museum exhibit using PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)
Collect artifacts from primary source websites, write about “exhibits”

Music Video
iMovie, Garage Band to compose music

News Articles
Word, iMovie to video tape newscast

Oral History
iMovie, Garage Band to record voice

AppleWorks, KidPix, Tux Paint
Illustrate a science concept, a story, a character in a poem

Petition/Bill of Rights

Photo Album
iPhoto, PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)

Picture Book

Use clipart, borders, different color text to help tell the message

Images from web, AppleWorks, PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)

PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)
In Excel, printing posters using multiple pages is possible

Press Kit

Radio Commercial
Garage Band


Relief Map
Google maps

Focus on website evaluation. To reinforce visual literacy, include a cover with images and text

Research Paper
Instead of an essay, consider creating a brochure, illustrated book, web page or web site

Resume and Cover Letter
Word using templates

Review Rules or Laws

Scale Model
PowerPoint (not as presentation tool), Excel to calculate scale
Draw tools in Microsoft allows user to use rulers to measure

Web to find a photograph, Tux Paint

Scientific instrument
PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)

PowerPoint (not as presentation tool)

Screenplay (film)
iMovie to edit video

Script (Play)

Shadow Box
Web to collect images

Short Story
Word, or post to the web on a blog or student publishing website

Slide Show or PPT
PowerPoint, iMovie

Song Lyrics

Study Guide
PowerPoint (not as a presentation tool)
Illustrate vocabulary words, create a diagram with images and text labels

Create survey on,,, Excel to create chart to compare results

Time Capsule
Web to find primary source documents

Inspiration, Kidspiration, Excel, Word tables,

TV Commercial

Web Page
Nvu, Word
To demonstrate learning after research

Web Site
Nvu, Word
Requires uploading to a webspace

any web browser from any web connected computer
What’s a wiki?

In Need of Help?

Sometimes we don’t feel competent in the elements of a software program. It’s very important to know that when working with students you do NOT have to know everything there is to know about a particular application. Start with a basic idea of what the final project should look like. Find examples from other teachers or the web. You’ll quickly discover that you have a confident group of students who can figure things out and teach others. In addition, there is nothing wrong with saying something like, “Let’s do the best we can for now and the next time we come to the lab, I’ll have time to ask an expert or play with this feature and I’ll be able to show you how that’s done.”
Here’s a few places you can look for tutorials:
The help menu of any application!
YouTube – yes, you can find tutorials on anything on YouTube, like Excel Formulas, etc.
AtomicLearning – Paid subscription is required for some of the content
Woopid Video Tutorials
How-To-Geek – for Microsoft Office
Google it! – type in “how to (what ever) in Microsoft Word (or which ever)”

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