Tuesday, February 23, 2016

The Best Pencil Sharpener EVER!!!

This year I started using the BEST PENCIL SHARPENER EVER!!!  Ok, this may seem dramatic, but as a teacher you know that pencil sharpeners can be a big pain in the classroom.  In my classroom there were two choices - the old fashion pencil sharpener that has been bolted the wall for the past fifty years or the electric sharpener that always gets jammed or makes so much noise.  I had hear about the pencil sharpener from Classroom Friendly Supplies last year and, though it looked good, wasn't sure if it was really worth it.  I finally took the plunge and bought a sharpener.  I am so glad that I did because it really is the best sharpener.  It's super easy to use, quiet and works great.  I recorded a short video so you can see how it works.

I know I mentioned this is the video, but while it comes with a clamp I would suggest that you don't use it.  I have used it with and without the clamp and I think it's better without the clamp.  It falls off and then the kids think they broke it and it just takes up time.  There is a permanent mounting bracket you can get if you want to permanently mount it somewhere.

So since writing is not my strong suit and I'm not good at conclusions, I'm just going to leave you with this:  You need at least one of these sharpeners in your classroom asap.  I regret not getting one sooner.

Classroom Friendly Supplies has provided me with this sharpener for purposes of providing a review. I received it at no charge to me and I am under no obligation to return the product but can keep it for me own personal use. In addition, the above link is a referral link.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Build molecules in 2D and view them in 3D

MolView is a website (and it works on iPads too!!) that allows you to build molecules and see what they would look like in a variety of views.  Even better, it has a giant list of compounds, molecules and atoms that you can choose from.
There is a slight learning curve when building your own molecules, but once you figure it out it's pretty easy.  All you need to do is to drop some atoms on the screen and then choose the bond type and connect the two atoms.  You can get fancier and start with some fragments (as the site calls them).  These are you basic carbon rings and things like that.
If you need to to have all of the directions spelled out for you, you can view the user manual here.   You might be more a visual learner and, if so, you can view their YouTube channel for some quick videos.   Here is an overview video of what the site has to offer.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Phases of the Moon Webquest

Last week I had some of my students complete a phases of the moon webquest. I say some of my students, because I have been differentiating my classroom assignments and so not all students do every assignment as they are at different levels.

What I like about this is that it hits many learning styles. PBS has a great site that is included in the webquest. You can check this out here. After I had the students go through that with some questions they moved onto to drawing the phases of the moon. I like to think of it as a cross between a little doodling and coloring. It's an easy task to let the kids feel like they are getting a break. The whole activity ends with students looking up what the phase of the moon on the day that they were born. A site like this can be used.

Feel free to take this idea and make it your own, but if you would like to get the one that I made up you can find it on Syllabuy.

Take a look at my other lessons 
  Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Homeschooler, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com