Saturday, May 10, 2014

Jasztal's Resource Spotlight (#4)-- This Week Blew My Mind!

This weekend, with Jasztal's Resource Spotlight,  I am showcasing some amazing weblogs, websites, and Twitteristas. This has been featured on the weblog the past few weeks, and I really hope it is as beneficial for you as it has been for me.

Prepare to be impressed. This week's finds have been some of my very favorites so far. So many people are inspiring me in the journey of launching two domains this summer, and I am grateful for every pearl of wisdom I am coming across.
  • I am starting with Would You Rather? Math once more. The concept is beyond awesome-- photographs are uploaded with a "Would you rather receive ___ or ___?" type format. Students then defend their responses using mathematical reasoning. 
  • Bailey and Derek's Daddy is an inspirational weblog that was started by an administrator. I am BEYOND impressed how he has showcased phenomenal movie clips on his weblog as well (like I did last week in another post). 
  • Ninja Reflections on Education was started by Todd Nesloney. When you enter the weblog, you eventually come across a post about eleven individuals who have inspired him on Twitter. Beyond that, he talked about his Classroom Champions experience, which is inspirational in my eyes on a personal level because my dad is an amputee. He seems like an all-around great teacher, and I cannot wait to delve more into what he has written. 
  • Then I must showcase Rachelle Smith's weblog- For Blogness Sake. Rachelle is a teacher who has all kinds of social media accounts and a Teachers Pay Teachers store as well. She also has a collaborative weblog called What the Teacher Wants with her friend Natalie Crockett. Now going back to the first link... it has been about her exquisite weight loss journey over the course of the past two years. She just reached the 100-pound mark from not "dieting", but eating as clean as possible and being... awesome. I really enjoyed perusing this blog. 
  • Teaching Math by Hart (Kim) showcases middle grades math. She incorporates tons of real-world connections, which is something I have been working diligently on with science lately. 
  • I must showcase Tracee Orman's Teachers Pay Teachers store! She is the creator of the beautiful Hunger Games units, one of the most sought-out products on the site. Her science graphic organizers and poetry unit are also phenomenal. She is one of the best. I would say her resources are ideal for grades 5 and up (and perfect for 5th-8th gifted students). 
  • Richard Byrne's Free Tech for Teachers may... blow your mind. I have been perusing technology weblogs a lot lately (and I will admit, quite obsessively), and he features some perfect simulation/game websites as well as gadgets. One of his best posts lately was about a rocket simulator. (I feel very inclined to download that program now...) 
  • MIT Student Weblogs... INCREDIBLE. I have a few students who desire to attend this college someday. They are enthusiastic and passionate-- and this year, I will admit I've looked into the college's online resources and general contributions quite a bit. Their students have designed tech tools like the Makey Makey and 3D pen-- and made videos that have been informational for my class to watch in science. MIT, in my opinion, has one of the greatest college presences on the Internet-- and I am beyond impressed by what their students are posting (as well as accomplishing). 
  • TED Blog's post about the Makey Makey deserves merit on its own. If you have never seen what a Makey Makey actually does... now... you will most likely be mind-blown!
  • Corbett Harrison is a man I admire very much. We have communicated before, too, which is awesome. He maintains, and if you've never visited that website, you simply need to. Just innovative, unique, and cross-curricular ideas all around. I also loved reading about what inspired him to become a writer-- an amazing fifth grade teacher of his, especially. 
  • The Maker Mom, Kim Moldofsky, is into the latest and greatest technology-- and I was intrigued when I watched this video of her--
  • Allendale Columbia Mastodon Matrix Experiment is one of the coolest (student-driven) weblogs I have seen in a while. It was started by sixth graders-- and takes readers on an intriguing journey involving history, science, math, and so much more. There are tons of pictures from their class adventures while working on the unit-- and it's just very interesting! I have already begun pondering how I can incorporate a similar concept in my classroom. 
  • Inspired Class is an immensely visual, beautiful weblog. There are religious education connections as well. This is maintained by a sixth grade educator, though there is much more that elementary teachers can implement as well.
  • Vocab Gal: Vocabulary Resources for the Classroom is a gorgeous blog from Sarah Ressler Wright. It is Sadlier-Oxford oriented, which I love because our gifted students utilize their resources. I love how she presents tons of materials on the blog-- and the visual is quite appealing as well. A+ for the this erudite word enthusiast. 
  • Twitter Accounts-- @isteconnects, @JeffCharbonneau (National Teacher of the Year), @GlynnEd, @ShiftParadigm, @rantoine2 (she is an academic coach in the next school district), @TXParentingPG (Stacia Taylor), @SimplySuzy, @MLMRobertson, @dayankee, @Kindercrazies, @MPOWERINGedu, @JenniferFox13, @amandacdykes, @MrMusselman, and @kellygrillo.
  • And if you want, I am @love4thgrade. (I taught fourth grade for nine years; I am not changing that name now that I've only been in fifth for one year. Nerd Moment: 9:1 ratio. Not too convincing!) 
Note-- Here are the other educators I have showcased so far at this weblog! More coming soon!

If you are featured in any of these showcase posts, you may take the image below and put it on your weblog, if you would like. Have a wonderful weekend!

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