Guest blog by Jodi Roper, a 2nd-grade teacher at Martha Reid Leadership Academy in Mansfield ISD.
When I think back on my own elementary days, computers and technology were limited and definitely not used in my math class. The only thing our computers were used for was learning to type and playing Oregon Trail. Today, the use of computers and the technology opportunities are endless in the elementary math classroom.
My students are surrounded by a vast amount of technology and information at the tips of their fingers. It only makes sense for me to use these resources and technology to improve engagement and the way my students learn. It can help enforce and enrich lessons. Technology has helped my students create, improve skills, and collaborate on projects.
The following are some of the different ways I have used technology in my classroom:
- PicCollage – students create pictorial examples of math equations, build arrays, and create vocabulary posters.
- ChatterPix – students are able to make math come alive. (This is a favorite in my class.)
- Videolicious – students make word problems into movies.
- DoInk – using the green screen students are able to create videos.
- FlipGrid – students are able to post videos and collaborate on topics not only in the classroom but other students. It is also used as a way for me to check for understanding.
- Skype – we use Skype to play mystery number, shape, and many other reasons to connect with students around the world. We even taught a math lesson to a school in Africa.
- Ozobots – students have traced shapes, connect math facts to answers, and trace perimeter
- Dash – used to play math games
- Sphero – math games, perimeter, and area
- Codeable robots – (we use Code and Go Mouse) – code robots to get to answers, area, and perimeter
- Xtra Math
- Education Galaxy
Although technology is a big part of my math class, it isn’t the only resource I use to teach and enrich my math lessons. My students still need and love the hands on manipulatives. When it comes to technology in the classroom, it’s all about balance and what the teacher is comfortable with. But, don’t be afraid to try new things!