TGIF ~ October 30, 2009

Technology Gems, Ideas, and Facts

Friday, Oct. 30, 2009

Gem ~ a website or application that might work well for you or your students

Homework Hotline provides resources to students to help with homework, but many of them could help teachers in the classroom as well. There are short videos on a variety of subjects that can be viewed online or downloaded for use offline. The “Needed Knowledge” section provides students with a list of links to sites that might help them with research. The site is produced in New York, so some of the content is specific to that state, but there is still much that can be useful to our students. The resources are probably more appropriate for elementary and middle school students, but could also be useful to our English Language Learners at any age and others who just need some extra help. (

Idea ~ a way to enhance your LFS lessons with technology

When I first came across this site I wasn’t overly impressed…until I played with it for a few minutes, that is. Word Magnets is a very cool web application that allows you to create “magnets” with letters, words, numbers…anything you can type…and move them around on a

Students could brainstorm words about a topic that begin with each letter of the alphabet.

background. The highlight (in my opinion) is that there are many different backgrounds to choose from, including tables, Venn diagrams, numbered lists, and a variety of graphic organizers. This would be a great way to have students practice any kind of sorting activity, Word Splash, sequencing…the list goes on. You can copy and paste the text into Word Magnets or add magnets once you’ve chosen your background. The only problem is that you can’t save your work. When you’re finished you can take a screenshot though, as I’ve done here. Give this one a try! (There’s a short little promo that runs when you first enter the site. I haven’t found a way to skip that…but it’s worth waiting through it!) (

Fact ~ just a bit of information

Don’t forget that we turn our clocks back an hour this weekend. Your computer at school will update automatically, so there’s nothing you have to do there. The clock in your classroom should update on its own, but if it doesn’t, Rick Freer will be around on Monday to take care of it. Enjoy the extra hour!

Have a great weekend, everyone!



3 thoughts on “TGIF ~ October 30, 2009

  1. Jason October 30, 2009 / 9:55 am


    How do you take a screenshot like that?


    • Anne Reardon October 30, 2009 / 10:16 am

      Hi Jason,

      On a Mac, you can take a screenshot by pressing command+shift+4 and then dragging the cross-hairs around the portion of the screen that you want to capture. The image will be saved to your desktop.

      Using Windows, you could do Ctrl+Print Screen, but that will copy your entire desktop to your computer’s clipboard. If you want to be able to select a specific portion of the screen, you’ll have to use another application. I’ve used Jing and it works quite well. It’s an app that you need to download, but the process is quick and easy. You can even annotate your screenshots or take videos of your screen. It’s a pretty handy tool! You can find it at


  2. David November 1, 2009 / 12:30 pm

    Hello Anne,

    Thanks for the blog post about our site – and I’m sorry you weren’t overly impressed when you first visited! We always appreciate feedback, so if there is anything you can think of that would improve the site then feel free to contact us. There’s a contact form on the website.

    As an extra bit of information, before you take a screen print, you can press the ‘up’ arrow on your keyboard to remove the blue background. This will hopfully save on ink if you wanted to print your finished activity.

    Hope this helps – thanks again for taking the time to write about the resource – we have lots more free resources on our site which may be useful too,



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