Working With Numbers

The Popplet social media message boards are positively crackling with numerical creativity at this time of year. School’s back and teachers and students alike are getting to grips with new projects, tasks, and technologies. Popplets about just about anything you can think of from pretty much everywhere are streaming hourly from the minds of popplet users onto our message boards providing valuable ideas and inspiration for others.

Math is a core subject, and even with a number of excellent dedicated math apps, Popplet finds its place in the math class. A versatile graphic organizer, that adds new dimensions to math work: visual, intuitive, and fun. Here are some of the ways math and technology educators are making Popplet count in the math classroom.

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Popplet Helps Teachers Make Better Lessons

Simple, intuitive and effective, the results of using Popplet in the classroom are often immediate and remarkable. Popplet’s ease of use combined with an impressive set of features: text, images, drawing, presentation and real-time collaboration mean that Popplet has applications over a broad range of subjects and classroom activities.

So versatile is Popplet, that its usefulness has attracted educators of all disciplines, from kindergarten teachers to college professors. A true all-rounder, Popplet can be put to work in every part of a lesson:

  • Lesson Planning and Objectives
  • Warm up
  • Presentation/Modeling
  • Practise
  • Checking and Demonstrating learning
  • Homework and Further Learning

Lesson Planning and Objectives
Popplet can work for teachers even before a class begins as an uncomplicated graphic organizer for lesson planning. Add images, text and links. Take notes and make visual connections, always keeping learning goals in sight, as in this EFL lesson plan:

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Popplet: The APPliance of Science

Popplet is a popular app with professors and students in the science classroom and in the laboratory. It has all the versatile, intuitive features favored by inquisitive minds. This ensures Popplet a position at the hub of all the best school and college science projects. Popplet has a role to play at every stage of the discovery process, from the initial ideas (brainstorming) stage through to the presentation of results. 

Why is Popplet so popular with scientists? Because there are so many ways to use it in scientific work. With Popplet you can:

  • Brainstorm thoughts and ideas – What do we know? What do we want to know? How are we going to find out?
  • Plan practical work and experiments
  • Record observations during practicals using text, photos, and video
  • Collate and present results
  • Collaborate on project work in real time…or anytime
  • Classify and make visuals of pretty much anything: animals, insects, plants, planets…
  • Create cool visuals that demonstrate learning
  • Produce great presentations of results

Let’s put Popplet under the microscope and observe its behavior in the areas of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.

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Innovate With iPad: Lessons to Transform Learning in the Classroom

Have you ever wanted a book about teaching with the iPad that is light on jargon, gentle on the brain, with tried and tested lesson plans, valuable didactic information, and clear advice all included?  Did you even know that such a book existed? Well, it does, and it’s called Innovate With iPad: Lessons to Transform Digital Learning – if only all technology books for teachers were like this one. Innovate with iPad is an immensely practical, but at the same time considered work that is immediately accessible to all Primary School (K-3) teachers, whether they are beginners or experts in the world of iPads and digital classroom technology.

“Innovate with iPad: Lessons to Transform Learning in the Classroom is the book you and every educator with access to iPad needs to make a fast transition to using iPad for learning.”

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Don’t skip the Foreword and Introduction because like the main body of the book, they are worth the time. The Foreword is only a few paragraphs and sets the tone nicely. In the Introduction, the creators of Innovate With iPad, experienced primary school teachers Karen Lirenman and Kristen Wideen, share their thoughts and explain the layout of the remainder of the book. So far, so good, that didn’t take long at all, and we really wanted to read more.

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Ten Great Ways to Use Popplet in the Kindergarten Classroom

Popplet is just perfect for the curious young hands and minds of Kindergarten students. With its highly intuitive and simple interface, thoughts and ideas are easily transferred, visualised and mapped using colors, images, text and drawings: A humble canvas for the limitless potential of our youngest users, who never fail to amaze us.

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One reason Poppet is such a success with the early school years, is that it is a versatile enough tool to be employed effectively across the whole spectrum of Kindergarten subjects, we often see Popplet work from every area of the Kindergarten curriculum:

  • Language Arts
  • Math
  • Social Studies
  • Science

Another reason for Popplet’s popularity might be that behind every great Kindergartener, there is a great Kindergarten teacher proudly publishing the best of their student’s Popplet work, and we’re very glad that they do, because we are able to share it here.

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Popplet People: Claire Brown, Kindergarten Teacher

When I tell you that our featured Popplet Person is a Kindergarten teacher, you might be forgiven for rightly jumping to some easy conclusions: a dedicated, devoted, hardworking and supremely motivated individual…and of course busy, so very busy! So busy and hardworking are kindergarten teachers like Claire Brown, that when they choose apps like Popplet for their students to use in the classroom, then those apps have to work as hard as they do!

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Claire came to our attention through sharing her student’s Popplet work on Twitter and her very cool blog, where she regularly posts her student’s classroom activities. Both are fine examples of what can be achieved by embracing technology in the classroom.

Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am in my tenth year of teaching an I’m originally from Lafayette, IN., where I went to Mayflower Mill as an elementary student, and that is where I started my teaching career and where I work now, graduating along the way from Purdue University with a degree in Elementary Education with a Reading Specialist focus. I love going on vacations anywhere there is a beach and the ocean. Continue reading

Learning to Read: Popplet in the Reading Classroom

Learning to read is not something that everyone fully remembers. For those who do recall, memories range from the forgettably nondescript, to the gloriously inspirational to the harrowingly painful. However memorable our early reading days are, one thing is certain: those early lessons in deciphering meaning from symbols are the beginning of one of life’s most impactful experiences, and for many represent the beginning of a lifelong activity, the nature of which exerts a strong influence on their future.

“Literacy is a fundamental human right and the foundation for lifelong learning. It is fully essential to social and human development in its ability to transform lives. For individuals, families, and societies alike, it is an instrument of empowerment to improve one’s health, one’s income, and one’s relationship with the world.”  UNESCO

Unlike some other essential skills such as speaking, walking and eating, there is no evidence that human beings possess any innate reading ability whatsoever, which means we have to start from scratch, firmly placing the littlest of feet at the base of the steepest of learning curves. How to begin such a formidable task? Well, according to the experts, the process begins before children ever set foot in the classroom. Continue reading

A Feast of Friends: 7 Apps We Love to Use With Popplet

No app is an island, especially in the classroom. Combining apps — in activities like app smashing, or in the natural course of classwork — can increase skills development and better aid subject understanding. Every great app is great because it does one or two things really well, but what makes an app really great is its capacity to integrate (inter-great?!) with other apps. Just like students, we love apps that work and play well with others!

Easygoing, open to sharing and with an engaging interface: Popplet has got what it takes to get the job done, so it’s no surprise that when it comes to interaction, Popplet’s social calendar is full.  We took a look at the apps that people love to use with Popplet and then we listed them in no particular order just in case…well, you know what it’s like when you have so many friends!

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Everyone’s A Writer Now: Popplet in the Writing Class

Writing is more popular than ever! Sure, the infamous selfie and the spontaneous snap of a restaurant meal might be getting all the notice, but sharing our prose and poetry is more commonplace than ever before. The Facebook comment, the 140-character tweet, the Tumblr or WordPress blog, and many other platforms offer almost everyone who can write a potential audience numbering in the billions. Never before has so much been written by so many for so many.

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In technology-assisted classrooms — and in the wider connected world — opportunities to write, to communicate, to develop, and to grow are now widespread. We took a look at how Popplet is being to put to good use by teachers of writing and how young scribes are shaping up in the digital world. Continue reading

Building Blocks in Autism Education: Minecraft and Popplet

In our article published last month Mind Mapping to Minds Meeting: Popplet in Autism Education, we talked about how new technologies were fast becoming powerful and invaluable tools in autism education. Young learners on the autism spectrum experience fewer difficulties when presented with new technology and have different needs to conventional learners. So certain technologies such as the iPad and apps like Popplet play to the strengths of autistic learners.

These technologies are not without their drawbacks: mainly the repetitive and inappropriate use of games and some social media apps. But that’s a problem not only found in the classroom! This is why people with autism, parents of individuals on the autism spectrum and educators involved in autism education use reliable “evidence-informed” information when choosing which technologies to use.

One organization that provides information for parents and educators is Autism Spectrum Australia (“Aspect”) – “Australia’s leading service provider for autism and other disabilities”. Two of their community leaders recently published a detailed guide demonstrating how the game “Minecraft is being used to address the special interests of those in the autism classroom”.

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