Image Map

Teaching with Emojis & Story Stones

20 January 2014

This year for Christmas I got these really cute emoji stickers in my stocking.  They are really neat and it got me thinking about how fun it would be to incorporate emojis in the classroom, whether via the iPad or with these awesome stickers!

Telling a story through pictures allows students to demonstrate their creativity, but can also be useful for those students who have trouble with verbal communication.  Recently I subbed as a para in a classroom with 3 year old children with Autism.  In the classroom they use Pecs (Picture Exchange Communication System) where the students have pictures to let the teachers know if they want something or how they feel.

Emojis are more universal and in addition to showcasing the emotions of the students, they also include objects which can be used to demonstrate a "want" for something or more generalized in a story.  You can get really creative with using pictures to tell a story.

Another great product that I stumbled upon and fell in love with are Story Stones.  Jacquie, mother of two and owner of The Sweeter Side of Mommyhood (blog & Etsy) designed these beautiful stones.  She is very talented and what makes these stones great is that they are perfect keepsakes for children and give them the freedom to express themselves and use their imagination. #storystones will definitely be making an appearance in my future classroom.

101 in 1001 Days Classroom Activity

01 January 2014

[Repost from my old personal blog--edited and modified for teaching}

Inspired to create my own list by Mackenzie Horan, author of the Design Darling Blog and fellow redhead, I got to work writing down all the things I hope to accomplish in these 2.75 years.  While not specifically related to dogs, I thought it would be a super fun activity to pursue and actually incorporated it into a technology lesson with my middle school students last year.
  1. Come up w/ 101 things to accomplish (September 2012)
  2. Inspire 2 people to make their own list
  3. Get a job teaching in a public school
  4. Take a dance class w/ Scott for wedding 1st dance (April 2013)
  5. Send out holiday cards 1 year (November 2013 - Hanukkah) (December 2013 - Christmas)
  6. Make 10 recipes off of Pinterest
  7. Learn calligraphy (March 2013)
  8. Make an address book w/ family & friend contact info *used Postable (February 2013)
  9. Send 50 handwritten notes (wedding thank you's don't count)
  10. Get an iPad mini (November 2012)
  11. Invest in 3 beautiful coffee table books  (Wedding Dogs, April 2013 - Lilly Pulitzer, June 2011 - Goodnight Moon, May 2013)
  12. Complete a 365 day photo challenge
  13. Write a children's book
  14. Legally change my name
  15. No fast food for a month
  16. Complete an entire coloring book
  17. Do 10 DIY crafts off of Pinterest
  18. Get married to the love of my life! (May 26, 2013)
  19. Convert my handwriting into a computer font (April 2013)
  20. Create an e-portfolio
  21. Become an Apple Distinguished Educator
  22. Become a Google Certified Teacher
  23. Save $100 using coupons @ the supermarket
  24. Participate in The Color Run
  25. Go to a Phillies vs. Red Sox game
  26. See Lady Gaga in concert
  27. Attend an Oktoberfest celebration
  28. Find the perfect beauty and skincare regimen for me
  29. Take a surfing lesson
  30. Cook Scott dinner everyday for 1 month (minus nights out)
  31. Find the perfect little black dress
  32. Make it to the gym @ least 3x a week for 2 months
  33. Drink 8 glasses of water everyday for 1 week
  34. Go on a safari (July 2013 Honeymoon)
  35. Give up soda for 1 month (seltzer is ok)
  36. Invest in a few ebook cookbooks
  37. Visit all 50 states
  38. Ride an elephant (July 2013)
  39. Participate in Doodle-A-Day Challenge
  40. Host a dinner party
  41. Design my own monogram (April 2013)
  42. Take a picture for each letter in the alphabet and make a collage
  43. Wear the right shade of red lipstick (December 2013 - Dior Addict in Sunset Blvd)
  44. Take a class to learn to crochet (October 2013)
  45. Learn to change a tire
  46. Unsubscribe myself from all the email lists that clutter my inbox
  47. Be paid as a freelance blogger or social media manager
  48. Try 10 new beers
  49. Take Scott to see Wicked on Broadway in NYC
  50. Decorate home for the holidays (October 2013, December 2013)
  51. Make my bed everyday for 1 month
  52. Host Thanksgiving dinner (Thanksgivukkah 2013)
  53. Run in the morning before work 20x
  54. Eat dessert 1st @ a restaurant
  55. Make homemade salsa for Scott
  56. Bake every single thing in a cookbook
  57. Take a glass blowing class
  58. Watch the ball drop in Times Square
  59. Attend the Thanksgiving Day Parade
  60. Complete and frame a 1000 piece puzzle
  61. Participate in a cookie exchange
  62. Leave a 100% trip
  63. Try 5 new restaurants
  64. Order off of the Starbucks secret menu
  65. Spend a day cooking and freezing meals
  66. Take Scott to see Cirque du Soleil "O"
  67. Attend a festival
  68. Purchase a Dyson vacuum cleaner
  69. Get a ridiculous manicure w/ a friend (November 2013 w/ Jenn *waxed hands*)
  70. Participate in Starbucks "Pay It Forward"
  71. Sing karaoke in a bar
  72. Try Zumba
  73. Watch the sunrise and sunset in the same day
  74. Eat @ Pat's cheesesteaks (only ever had Geno's)
  75. Make my own hummus
  76. Be a bridesmaid in someone's wedding
  77. Join a book club
  78. Fly first class/in a sleeping pod
  79. Go sailing
  80. Enter a contest and win (too many times to count!)
  81. See 10 classic movies I've never seen
  82. Go to Martha's Vineyard
  83. Grow fingernails out and keep nicely polished for 1 month
  84. Learn to drive a stick shift
  85. Participate in "Operation Beautiful"
  86. Fix my hair for work everyday for 2 weeks straight
  87. Teach someone else a skill
  88. Get my car detailed
  89. Learn how to navigate the stock market
  90. Try acupuncture
  91. Make a DZ Princess Family Tree
  92. Make a candle
  93. Stomp in a bucket of grapes and make wine
  94. Make my own melted crayon art
  95. Splurge on La Mer face cream
  96. Go to New Zealand
  97. Social Media Free Sunday
  98. Establish a family tradition
  99. Knit a dog sweater
  100. Create a cookbook with recipes I've made and pictures
  101. Visit the Lilly Pulitzer Pink Palace
Classroom Integration

One of the many skills that I taught my students was how to create a numbered and/or bulleted list in Microsoft Word.  Even though I created a very long list, I had them give me a list of 20-50 things they wanted to do before the end of the school year. (School is in session for at least 180 days).  Creating a a bulleted/numbered list is really easy in Microsoft Word.  It is a one-click stop on the toolbar.  However, what I wanted them to do was customize each bullet using a graphic they found online (that related to the post). 

The steps to do this are really simple.  I have found that the hard part for them is using the "save as" feature and locating where they save their pictures.  They struggle with the WANT to use copy/paste.

For example: