Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Clock Clipart

You may have already known this time saver, but I thought I'd post about it just in case a few people didn't know this information.  As I was working with a teacher at my school during our weekly technology meeting, she mentioned cutting out pictures of clocks and pasting them onto a worksheet for her students (literally-using scissors and glue). I told her I bet we could find clock clipart for her to use and then she could just draw the arrows on the clock.
I used Google image search and found a blank clock. She was happy, but all of a sudden, I wondered....
could I put in a specific time and find a clip art already created showing that time???
So....I put in 7:38 clock in the search using Google. Check it out:
I couldn't believe I NEVER thought to Google that before! I have since shared this with several teachers (and will share this blog post with all those I help at my school) because I think this is SUCH a huge time saver for teachers.
By the way, the clock came from this site. Here are their terms:

Educational Use. A maximum of fifty (50) clipart items may be used in any non-commercial, educational project (report, presentation, display, website, etc.) without special permission. The use of more than fifty clipart items in a single project requires written permission from the Florida Center for Instructional Technology (FCIT) at USF.
Credit. Please credit FCIT whenever a resource is used. If resources from this site are incorporated into a website, a link to must be included on your site.

So, save yourself some time and Google the time you need for clock clipart!

Monday, October 18, 2010


I must admit, I am a Googler. My homepage is iGoogle and I also use Google when searching for images. Recently, Susan Brooks from Internet4Classrooms, showed me Yippy and as an educator, I really think it has potential to use it with kids.
When you enter a search term, it breaks the results down into categories. (see picture on right). I searched for endangered animals and the results are divided and you can click the plus icon beside each category to see the results from that category. Notice one of the categories is pictures, which is nice if you are having students locate images for use on projects.

Here is a description of Yippy from their website:

Yippy queries several top search engines, combines the results, and generates an ordered list based on comparative ranking. This "metasearch" approach helps raise the best results to the top and push search engine spam to the bottom.
But what really makes Yippy unique is what happens after you search. Instead of delivering millions of search results in one long list, our search engine groups similar results together into “clouds.” Clouds help you see your search results by topic so you can zero in on exactly what you’re looking for or discover unexpected relationships between items. When was the last time you went to the third or fourth page of the search results? Rather than scrolling through page after page, the clouds help you find results you may have missed or that were buried deep in the ranked list. 

So, what are you waiting for? Try Yippy and see if you like it? I know I added it to my bookmark toolbar! 

Endangered Animal Posters using Comic Life

Our second graders studied about endangered animals in Science and what people can do to help those animals. The students were divided into groups of 2, assigned a specific endangered animal, and gathered facts about their animal. Then, their teacher, Mrs. McCall, asked me to come teach a lesson for them to use their laptops to create a poster about their animal using Comic Life. I had loaded pictures of their animals on the school server to save the time of them looking for clipart. After showing the boys the basics of Comic Life, they were turned loose to create their posters. They loved the activity and their work came out great!

2A Endangered Animals posters on PhotoPeach

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Vocabulary is Fun Site (from the Creator of Spelling City!)

If you are an educator and don't know about Spelling City, take some time to check it out! I hadn't seen this Vocabulary is Fun site from the creator of Spelling City until Susan from Internet4Classrooms shared it with me this week.
This vocabulary site has games for students to build English vocabulary skills. Skills include analogy games, antonym games, contraction games, foreign language games, parts of speech games, prefix and suffix games, and many MORE!
Here is a description of their site:
Vocabulary is Fun is a leading vocabulary website worldwide with the best flash online word games. The vocabulary games include an online word search, an online crossword puzzle, and hangman online (our version is called HangMouse). Users choose the vocabulary list that the online word game will use in the word game. The vocabulary games are popular for use on smart boards for word games to build vocabulary skills in classrooms.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Great site!!!

I ran across this site tonight while looking for some sites for classes to use. It's 42explore Thematic Pathfinder-another free resource for teachers! Here is the description from their site:

Why start with a search engine, when you can find a pathfinder to fit your needs at 42eXplore? When learning something new, it's nice to have more than one resource to explore. This web project provides "four to eXplore" for each topic. On each page you'll find definitions, activities, the 4 good starting points, and many more links and resources for the thematic topic.

If you are looking for specific sites for a topic and you are an elementary teacher, I encourage you to check this site first to save you time! You can search by subject or click Topic index to see a list of all available.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Martin Institute Conference Thoughts

The Martin Institute for Teaching Excellence, housed in Presbyterian Day School (where I work), held it's first conference last week.  The theme of the conference was Teaching for Tomorrow. There was a lot of preparation to make this first conference outstanding and I think the goal was met! I wanted to share the wiki for the Martin Institute with you because most of the presenters shared their presentation materials on the site. I was privileged enough to get to present 3 different sessions at this conference and I felt that they were successful. Most of the sessions were Ustreamed. If you have time to watch, I highly recommend checking some of them out!
Wes Fryer was the keynote speaker on Thursday night and Tom Barrett was the speaker (skyped in) during lunch on Friday. The conference had some awesome door prizes (including 5 iPads and 3 Flip cameras) that made several people very happy when they won! There will be a spring conference and a summer conference at the Martin Institute. More info will be posted on their website for more info about the upcoming conferences.

Monday, October 4, 2010

During the TeachMeet Memphis unconference held at my school last week, a friend of mine, Melissa Smith, used this Random Name/Word Picker to select the winners of door prizes.  I thought this was such a neat tool, so I asked her where she found it. is the site to find this and many other free tools to use in your classroom.
First, let me tell you about the Name Picker.  You enter your names in a box that appears and it puts them into a machine. You click Fruit Machine below and it spins the wheel to select a new student name. After it chooses a student, you can remove them so they are not selected again. This has great possibilities for classroom use.  A few ways I can think of to use it are to create groups (press it a few times in a row and those kids are all in one group), to select who answers the question, to select job helpers for the week, etc.  The possibilities are endless!!!
While you are on the site,  check out the other great features they have for teachers.  Their site states "create free educational games, quizzes, activities and diagrams in seconds! Host them on your own blog, website, or intranet! No signup, no passwords, no charge!
Their site allows you to search their sample files by subject or by type. On the right side of the page, there is a list of the most popular templates. This is a great time saver for teachers!