Our Learning Circle is for supporting one another in our common goal to meaningfully integrate technology in our classrooms by sharing ideas, lessons, challenges, and successes, especially for making best use of our Interactive Whiteboards.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Tool Talk... Starting us off! P.S. This post took me 5 minutes!

One of the greatest things about the Notebook 10 software is all the useful tools and ready-made templates available.

My new favourite tool is the 'blind', a handy icon on the top toolbar, between the 'red x' for deleting and the 'full page' icon. The 'blind' allows you to cover the page and then reveal it at your leisure, on the click of a button.

I've been using the 'blind' to play estimation games with my grade 1/2's. Before class, I place a bunch of shapes / pictures on a new Notebook page. Then cover with the 'blind'. At the start of the lesson, I ask my kids to watch closely while I open the 'blind', to see if they can estimate (more than 50? or less than 50?). I only keep the page revealed for a short moment before clicking on the 'blind' again. We share our estimates. Then I reveal a second time and circle 10 of the shapes / pictures on the page. The kids then have another moment to revise their estimate (more than 50? or less than 50?). After we share our final estimates, I tell them which estimate is closer and we consider how grouping 10's helps us.

I think it is funny that I only discovered 'the blind' from one of our learning circle members at our last meeting, especially considering it is part of the main tool bar! It is funny what you can miss even when you've been using Notebook for a while!

What tools or templates do you find most useful in your Notebook Software?? And how do you use them?

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