Hedgehog Escape is a logic game by Learning Mates. At the moment, it is available on Amazon for $14.85. The goal is to try to roll the pack of baby hedgehogs out of the hedge to their mother. The levels increase in difficulty by adding badgers to strategic spots on the board. This encourages the player to think ahead, and to try to learn from his or her mistakes. It can be played by one player, but my students like to solve the puzzles in pairs. Once a child is shown the way the game works, he or she catches on quickly. My gifted students as young as 6 years old and as old as 11 enjoy this game.
Estimation vs. Calculation is one of many interactive math bulletin board ideas made available by Kutztown University. Each of the bulletin boards is designed by a college student studying to become a teacher, has accompanying pictures, directions on how to replicate the board, and worksheets. Most of them are for secondary school, but I noticed a few, such as the Estimation one, that would be appropriate for upper elementary. I especially liked the warning that appeared at the end of the instructions for Estimation vs. Calculation. The creator, Sara Karahoca, states, “WARNING!!!!!! A bulletin board with candy is very enticing. NOT RECOMMENDED FOR USE WITH COLLEGE STUDENTS (as they will eat all your candy). NOT RECOMMENDED IN HIGH TRAFFIC/UNSUPERVISED AREAS (as students, hungry professional staff, and/or wild animals may also eat all your candy and steal your smiley faces.)” A sense of humor always helps!
7 Hat Challenge is a game hosted by Scholastic News that allows the player to choose the difficulty level, and then try to earn 7 different presidential “hats” of responsibility. This is a good interactive that allows the player to learn more about some of the Presidents of the United States and their many roles. For a plethora of Presidents’ Day activities, check out the post where I found this one on “Technology Rocks. Seriously.”
I found Hands Symphony on one of my favorite resources, KB Connected. I think that it is a great site for composing a tune to email to someone you care about while at the same time spreading life-saving information about CPR. Even if you aren’t planning to e-mail your composition, your students will have fun with this creative way to make music. I thought it was appropriate to post a site sponsored by the American Heart Association on Valentine’s Day:)
Valentine’s Activities for the SmartBoard, created by SmartBoard Smarty, can be found at Teachers Pay Teachers. My GT 2nd graders were completely engaged by the Sudoku activity. Do not be alarmed by the title of the site. There are many great resources here that are absolutely free. You do have to register for an account (which is also free) in order to download them, but I have found many quality materials here that make registering well worth my time. This particular one is in SmartBoard format, but there are also Powerpoints, Word Documents, and PDF files. While you are visiting Teachers Pay Teachers, you might want to think about starting your own “store” on their site. Their biggest seller, Deanna Jump, has made over $500,000 by selling her self-designed materials here!
It is difficult to describe this mysterious, whimsical game, so I will quote the iTunes summary, “Explore a dream-like world of eleven beautifully-constructed environments in this iPad adaptation of the classic desktop adventure. Equal parts puzzle game, playful toy, and living picture-book, Windosill rewards playful investigation with mysterious and beautiful surprises.”
My nine year old daughter saw me trying to solve a level, and soon we were both deeply engrossed in finding the solution. We completed the game together, and then she wanted to start it over again from the beginning. Her perseverance in trying to puzzle out each level was admirable.
Vectorpark, the company responsible for this game, also has other iOS apps, which you can view here.
Ever heard of Speed Dating? The concept is to meet with a person for a few minutes, chat, and then move on to another person. The short discussion with the potential date allows each participant to determine if he or she thinks it is worth pursuing the relationship any further.
The other day, I saw a variation on this idea that, believe it or not, is perfect for education. It is called Speed Booking, and the students are given the opportunity to learn a little about a group of books so they can decide which ones pique their interest. If this post piques your interest, check out the details at iLearn Technology!