If you are a 90’s child you might remember a game that was very stimulating called The Oregon Trail. I think this is a perfect example of a game that is stimulating and fun for children of all ages. It’s an example of students not only using technology through computers or tablets now but teaches them lessons along the way. The game gives kids a chance to make decisions on their wagon, hunt for supplies, rest all the while they learn about the important landmarks and make important decisions about their party.
This is a perfect example for games and stimulations because it teaches kids not only how to use technology but also allows them to play a game and keeps their interest in the game because their interest is peeked wanting to finish the game.
I enjoyed the website Tiki Toki I would give older students the assignment to research and create a creative timeline using this website; the time line would be something along the lines of technology or of their favorite author and the timeline would be the times the author wrote something in their career that the student feels is important.
If I were teaching a class one of the lessons I would plan for was a lesson on literature. On eSchool News they have at number two on the list of ten best virtual field trips something called Google Lit Trips that are downloadable files that mark the trips of famous literature characters on Google Earth. This would give students a interaction they wouldn’t have otherwise to show them how characters progress in their stories.
One of the technologies mentioned that I would use in a class is the virtual field trips mentioned above through Google earth. I would use this in grade 4-6th. The reason I chose these grades had to do with student development. Literature can be a bit daunting at this age and students sometimes have a hard time focusing on what they need to. Having something like a virtual field trip for them to follow along as they read will keep them interested and engaged because it gives them something to visually see and follow as the lesson progresses.
I found the tool PBS kids very entertaining and fun; I played some of the games myself. There are games in there that are suitable for student learners of all ages so there could be no worry about students not being left out of the lesson or fun.
When I was a kid we would have, time set aside where we would go to the computer lab and play Oregon trail, I would have time set aside for the same for my own students. This is where they can log in and play some of these games so they feel that their time in class isn’t all books and paper but they would be having some fun too.
Think about how each of the tools you explored can enhance teaching and/or learning. Give a specific example for educational use of:
Games are an excellent way to enhance teaching or learning. My two children are in third grade and they use games regularly both at home and in the classroom. They often use the website IXL which has math games. There are games for many different math functions and they are divided into grade levels. These games help to reinforce the math skills the students are learning in the classroom. It is a way to to encourage kids to practice these skills without the pressure they may feel during regular classwork or testing.
My daughter also really enjoys the game site Study Island. This site has games and videos that reinforce reading content and skills. The videos are funny and engaging. The games are entertaining and exciting.
Timelines are a great way for teachers to give students a visual representation of historical events. This could be events in the life of one historical figure or the history of an entire country or city. Students who are visual learners may better understand the time period of events if they are able to view a timeline and connect the events together. I viewed the Tiki Toki timeline tool and was impressed with how easy it would be to use and incorporate into the classroom.
I love the idea of virtual field trips. There are so many historical and important places to visit that some students just may never have access to. Students in California would have the opportunity to virtually visit Jamestown and learn about the historical events that took place there. Students on the east coast can virtually visit the Grand Canyon. There are so many great locations and learning opportunities available.
Explain how one technology can be used in a specified grade and content area to meet a learning objective.
The game site BrainPOP is a great tool to use for third graders. In third grade math, students are learning division and multiplication. The games offered on this site give students a chance to reinforce and practice those division and multiplication skills in a fun and exciting way.
Finally, choose one additional tool and give a specific example of how this tool can to enhance the learning of an additional group of learners.
I think the PBS kids website is a great tool for students with special needs. There are games available on this website for a variety of different learning levels. The student can choose a character they are familiar with and a game that is on their individual level. Many of the games have audio elements that explain the rules and skills and narrate the game as you go along. This is great for a student who may struggle with reading. My children used this site often particularly during the Kindergarten and 1st grade time frame.
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