Monday, January 11, 2010

DreamBox Learning

I shared this with some other educators today... I'm often searching for resources (more often than blogging- unfortunately) that will help students/children and their teachers. When I come across something that I think is amazing- I will always share it with anyone who will listen!! Well, if you have a child struggling with math (grades k-5) then you must try the following website...

http://www.dreambox.com/

Dreambox learning (after doing my research) was developed by technology specialists alongside elementary educators. It's not just another site with 'games' to play. These games are actually individualized and tailored per student/child... and all the lessons that have been developed are based on NCTM's (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics) standards. As a parent and/or teacher (I decided to get both subscriptions) you receive updates about each child's progress, unlike other programs where you have to log-in to check the status and progress... Dreambox will send you each student's status!!

Here's another aspect that I LOVE about this website... It will alert you as to how long it has been since a student or your child has logged on. (For example, my daughter hadn't logged in for a few days and I received an email letting me know... in a nice way... )

OK... I know I already said I LOVED the site but here's another great thing you need to know about Dreambox... the BLOG... a m a z i n g !!! This is one of the rare newsletters that I actually wait anxiously for in my "INBOX"... Why?? Their Newsletter includes links to other sites, book recommendations, ebooks, links to free activities, lessons to use in the classroom, activities to use at home to support learning, resources for monthly themes, kid-friendly events occurring online at amazing sites like NASA,  NCTM, and loads more...

One more thing... a math calendar of events will keep you busy all month long. Leave it on your fridge or print it twice so you can post one on your bulletin board too- Here's the link to January's calendar... (anyone have a kazoo???)
http://www.dreambox.com/blog/new-january-kids-calendar-to-ring-in-2010

I hope you check it out and find it useful as well. Let me know what you think... I believe in their product, as have others such as the Association for Education Publishing- they awarded Dreambox the Golden Lamp for Technology Innovation!

Learn why Dreambox is quickly becoming THE interactive math-technology tool to help support students!!
http://www.dreambox.com/

Using Comics in the classroom and Have your portrait drawn too!!

If you read the previous post about "Boy/Challenging Writers" then you will be up to date on why I am providing the following link to Ryan Alexander-Tanner's website. He is an artist who specializes in comics and I found him, luckily, through AERA! I had asked him if I could use his comics in the classroom to help my writers develop ideas, creativity, and even some dialogue...

I think comics are a GREAT way to engage writers. You will find that every single student, unless they've worked in groups, has generated an original idea for the same picture. Please make sure you ask for permission if you use an artist's work in your own classroom and follow copyright rules.

If you click on Ryan's "obligatory blog" you will find a link to have your portrait done... I was brave and had mine drawn... It's amazingly similar to my picture!!!

Wow- he's really good!!! Make sure to look at his comics and drawings... I wish I had that kind of talent!!!!




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