Microsoft Partners in Learning Blog

Last week we highlighted our guest bloggers from Loudoun County Schools.  They shared their strategies for adapting books for all learners.  This week our hats go off to two other members of the Loudoun County Assistive Technology team, Tara Jeffs and Cynthia Feist. Tara and Cindy host an accessibility blog on the Microsoft Partners in Learning Blog.  This is an excellent source for finding information about meeting the needs of diverse learners in your classroom.  Check out  recent posts on developing MathLit kits and Strategies for Improving Organization and Time Management Skills.  All of the posts contain photos, videos and web links.  This blog is worth bookmarking and sharing far and wide!!

Epic Win

I discovered this app last week while doing some searching for an app to help a middle school student who was having difficulty completing tasks and interacting with peers.  Using a game format, the student can earn coins when selected activities are completed.  Coins can unlock new levels of the game and the user can earn new tokens.  This app just might work for those teenage boys who love to play virtual games.  Here are a few screen shots.

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Families as AT Advocates

The Family Center for Technology and Disabilities offers great resources to help families learn about AT, identify AT solutions for their children and help their children to be self-determined about AT.  The Assistive Technology Solutions Fact Sheet is a visual guide to AT and a great resource to share with families!  Check it out and share it with families….it’s new!

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Virtual TechKnowledgy is Back!

Screen shot 2013-09-27 at 11.38.23 PMMark your calendar for the 3rd Annual Virtual TechKnowledgy Conference, November 11-15, 2013.  Each day this week, live conference events will be scheduled beginning with an opening keynote on Monday, November 11, featuring Penny Reed, an internationally recognized assistive technology expert.  Registration is required for daily webinars highlighting a variety of AT topics.  New Virtual Exhibit Halls will be open the entire week!  REGISTRATION IS FREE!  Certificates of Participation for licensure renewal will be available following completion of each event.  Visit for conference updates and registration information.


Dry Erase Circles

We all love the dry-erase boards and use them in lots of ways to engage our students and check for learning.  I saw this idea on Pinterest and thought it was a great way to provide a scratch pad or doodle space for students as they are processing information.  They are have been used to decorate walls in kitchens and bedrooms, but they are also a great addition to the desks and tables in classrooms.  Here’s the link to blog where the information and photo are posted.


Online Google Timer

Did you know when you Google Search30 Second Timer” it will automatically bring up a timer set for that amount of time.  You can change the time (minutes and seconds) and it will set the Google Timer for that amount of time.  Instead of searching for a time timer or other physical timer to use with your students, try the online Google Timer.   Note:  This Google search will also bring up other online timers.  Check them out!

Easy to create cartoons

You don’t have to be an artist to draw cartoons.  For many students cartooning is a creative form of written expression.  I was exploring some of my bookmarks and found a site about using technology in the classroom and there were several links to some new sites I have not seen before.

ToonDoo looks  like a fun way to create cartoons.  Make sure you read the terms and conditions, but it appears you can use it for free once you sign in.

Let us know if it works for you!

10 Best Apple and Android Apps

E-School News posted the 10 Best Apple and Android Apps for this year.  They are listed in the April 26th newsletter.  For each app listed, they have  included a brief description, device compatibility, suggested use, features, price, and a link to a more in-depth summary with an option to purchase on iTunes or Google Play.

Check it out!