Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Tuesday Teacher Tips - May 14, 2013 - Puppet Pals, Chet Gecko Series, Summer Reading Programs

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iPad App: Puppet Pals

There are a number of storytelling apps available that allow your students to tell a story and record; however, there aren’t a lot that will allow you to  share the work they created on your own website.  Enter: Puppet Pals. 

With the free version of Puppet Pals, students can choose up to 8 characters to include in their work—7 standard characters that are common to fairytales or fables with the additional option to create your own characters with photos from your cameral roll.  You also have the ability to choose from three backdrops and you can add backdrops from your own photos.

The simple record and save features can be easily used by even the youngest iPad users, and with just one extra step to export, you can quickly have your feature presentation saved to your camera roll where you can access it for sharing via social media or your own website.

For an additional $2.99, there is the option to purchase a “Director’s Pass” which gives you all access to all content, or you can buy individual content packs for $.99.  While the extra packages are awesome, you could certainly spark a lot of creativity with the content that is free.

This app would be great for creative story telling, retelling a story in your own words or just presenting information in a fun way.

Want to see the app in action? Check out some of our work at the link below!



Summer Reading Programs—Keep Kids Reading!

While summertime is the perfect time to recharge after a tough year of school, it’s also unfortunately a time where some students fall victim to the summertime lag and actually regress in their ability.  One way to keep their brains charged is to encourage reading, and what better way to do that than to share with their parents some of the reading programs that local book sellers and libraries are offering.
Don’t miss the June 1st kickoff to Campbell County Public Library’s Summer Reading Program—Dig into Reading.  Barnes & Noble will be giving away books to students who read 8 books in their Imagination’s Destination program.  Joseph Beth Booksellers is offering programming in Camp Joseph-Beth.  You also may want to check out the Scholastic Summer Challenge and register your whole class (or school) to  read, record their minutes and earn reward!

Chet Gecko - Mystery Series!

Do your students love mystery and suspense?  Consider introducing them to Bruce Hale’s Chet Gecko: Private Eye—the series about an elementary aged lizard with a knack for beating crime. 
The series , which could be enjoyed by grades 1-5, is written in the style of classic detective programs like the Maltese Falcon, and includes comical and colorful descriptions of characters: “’What’s the story brown eyes?’ I said ’If your face was any longer you’d have to rent a chin.’”
Any of the books in the series could offer a great lesson on description and voice.
We have 3 of the series  in eBook format, but you can pick up the print version at the local, public library.
Let me know if you want an eBook demo!

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