Thank you for your interest in Interactive Whiteboard Insights! My blog has re-located! Please join me for the same informative posts over at StarrMatica’s blog: blog.starrmatica.com
Monday, December 31, 2012
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
StarrMatica has come a long way since its beginnings in my fourth grade classroom seven years ago. But there is always more work to be done! To further our mission of inspiring students to learn with interactive digital content, we have entered the Chase Small Business Grant Competition.
We need 250 votes on Facebook for our application to be considered.
We will use the grant funding to make content additions and updates to enhance the way you use StarrMatica in your classroom.
If you have a Facebook account, please take one minute to follow the directions below and support our efforts to support you!
Directions to Vote for StarrMatica:
1. Visit www.missionsmallbusiness.com
2. Click LOG IN & SUPPORT. (You will be required to login to Facebook to prove you are a real person, but this will not connect any apps to your Facebook account.)
3. Put “StarrMatica” in the business name search box. You may also include “Iowa” as the state.
4. Click VOTE next to StarrMatica.
Thank you for your help!
Saturday, November 19, 2011
This is the fourth in a series of seven posts sharing reasons virtual manipulatives should be the cornerstone of interactive content in the classroom including specific practical examples. (The previous posts can be viewed here: Part 1-Visualizing, Part 2-Explore Difficult Concepts, Part 3-Access Materials/Added Value)
Virtual manipulatives help students learn through inquiry by providing teachers with easily adjustable visual tools. Students can test their ideas, explore the effects of changing variables and formulate theories based on results.
Below are three manipulatives that help students learn through inquiry.
Students investigate and form theories about the relationship between area and perimeter by changing one variable and observing the resulting change in the other.
Students explore the concept of fractions by sharing cookies equally between different numbers of students. Both “fraction of a group” and “fraction of a whole” concepts can be explored.
Students group and sort pumpkins into their own self-created categories.
Sunday, October 23, 2011
This is the third in a series of seven posts sharing reasons virtual manipulatives should be the cornerstone of interactive content in the classroom including specific practical examples. (The previous posts can be viewed here: Part 1-Visualizing, Part 2-Explore DifficultConcepts)
Unlike hands-on math manipulatives, virtual manipulatives are found online. While this means students are unable to touch the manipulatives, online versions of common manipulatives can be beneficial in other ways. Classroom budgets don’t always allow us to purchase all the tool and resources we need. Online manipulatives are an inexpensive (and usually free) way to supplement your manipulative supplies. So, if you can’t afford a classroom set of fraction tiles or if a fellow teacher is using the school’s set when you need them, an online version can be used in its place.
Online manipulatives, when paired with an interactive whiteboard or projector, help all students in the classroom have an equal opportunity to see the manipulative without huddling around a table.
Online manipulatives also provide added value. They often have features that can be turned on and off and have added learning opportunities that are not possible with traditional hands-on manipulatives. The virtual clocks shared below include the ability show both digital and analog time as well as sunrise and sunset to assist in a discussion of AM and PM.
Below are four manipulatives that help students by adding value or providing access to materials.
Telling Time: Virtual Clock
Advance the hands on the analog clock to watch the sun and moon rise and set. Reveal and hide the digital time.
Advance the hands on the analog clock. Reveal and hide the time in word form and the digital time.
Place Value Cards
Create three digit numbers, separate them into values, and display their representative base ten blocks.
Rotate and count the faces, edges, and vertices of the five Platonic Solids. Watch each solid fold and unfold from its net
Thursday, September 22, 2011
This is the second in a series of seven posts sharing reasons virtual manipulatives should be the cornerstone of interactive content in the classroom including specific practical examples. (The previous post can be viewed here: Part 1-Visualizing)
Virtual manipulatives help students to explore difficult concepts in depth. They help to make abstract concepts concepts more easily understandable with visual tools. A classic example is using base ten blocks to illustrate “regrouping” in a multi-digit addition or subtraction algorithm.
Below are three manipulatives that help students explore difficult concepts.
Hopping Number Line
Explore basic addition, subtraction or skip counting by hopping an animal along a number line.
Bounded Fraction Pointer
Practice comparing and ordering fractions, simplifying fractions, or finding equivalent fractions on a number line that adjusts instantly. Create fractions visually and then watch them plotted on the number line.
Explore multiplication by viewing arrays paired with the traditional algorithm and with the lattice method.