I hate papers. I don’t like keeping up with them, grading them, or trying to remember who gets what paper. So when I made the transition from the world of Kindergarten (with more performance-based assessments) to the world of 2nd (with more paper and pencil-based assessments) I was totally out of my comfort zone. On top of all that I was handed 10 Chromebooks and was like, what do I do with these things? Again, coming from Kinder with 6 iPads I had a good handle on technology. Now having older kids with more advanced technology I wasn’t sure what to do. Well, I had heard about Google for Education for a while but my old district wasn’t a Google district and I was wondering how to try it in kindergarten. Now I had no excuse. So, I started out by using Google Classroom for my ELA rotation using Daily 5. I started with Listening to Reading. I uploaded videos from Youtube, Bookflix, Brain Pop Jr. etc for my students to hear. Students listened to the videos and recorded themselves doing a video response to 1 of 9 questions from a Fiction and Nonfiction Sheet list. Students submit videos and I am able to check for understanding.
Next, I got a few cool ideas for Word Work from Alice Keeler and Christine Pinto. I use Google Sheets to create Word Searches and a Spelling Typing Sheet to help students with our weekly spelling words. It’s a nice change up to the old-fashioned “rainbow write.” I also have an activity using Google Slides where students have to match the picture of our vocabulary words being acted out with the correct word Scavenger Hunt. I also use Google forms to track rotation progress, give study guides and test, as well as digital work forms (a twist on worksheets). Grading is done and goes straight back into Google Classroom. Google Apps has been a game changer for my students and me and it is still only the first quarter!
Harold Johnson is a Second Grade Teacher at the award-winning Lake Carolina Elementary Lower Campus but is a Kindergarten Teacher at heart. Harold is enthusiastic about providing students the opportunities to interact with technology. He is currently a Seesaw Ambassador and WriteAbout Rockstar Teacher. Harold’s belief is Paper and Pencil isn’t the only way to educate. Follow him @Mr_Johnson2nd
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