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3 Holiday Activities for Teachers

December 18, 2014

holiday-gift_88664923_1500pxYes, ‘tis the season for some good holiday activities in class! You students’ attention is probably on the upcoming holiday break. So try out these fun activities to keep them focused on their school work before the break.

Explore the different December Holidays

Some students may celebrate Christmas; some observe Hanukkah or Kwanzaa. Regardless of what they celebrate, it is great to have them be more conscious of the different holidays celebrated in December. Have them complete a Venn diagram to help compare and contrast the different holidays. Have them include how the holiday is celebrated, the foods eaten, and the history of the holiday. Or you can check out these Voki Holiday Lesson Plans for you class!

Charles Dickens Readout loud

Bring some Christmas spirit into class by having your students read A Christmas Carol. Allow your students to pick a role to play and remember to let everyone have a chance of reading it! Make it more fun and share it with their parents by having them record their voice on a Voki!

Create a Holiday-themed Classroom Newsletter

Ask your students questions about what they learned over the year and what are the looking forward to for the upcoming year. Share your students’ research projects in the newsletter. A great research project idea is have research the different holiday traditions! (See first activity). Or you can create fun holiday polls. The idea is easily adaptable to different subjects, like language arts and math.

What holiday activities did you plan this year? Let us know!

Until next time,

Eva D.

The Voki Team

Tips for Teaching Vocabulary

December 2, 2014

knowledge-dictionaryRemember those list of vocabulary words that your teacher would give the class every Monday. Then we would have to look up their definitions, write sentences with it, and… a test every Friday. After that, we don’t remember how to use those words or when we can use it.

So let Voki give you some tips on how to help you teach vocabulary and help your students remember them!

Selecting the Best Words

Instead of wasting your time compiling a super long list of vocabulary words that you students should know, have your students read through the first chapter of the text and pick out words that they do not understand. Then have them write down the definition or their “best guess” for the word without a dictionary. Remember to explain to them that this is not a test, but is information to help you, as a teacher, to figure out what they need help with.

Use the Words Everyday

Include those vocabulary words when you are teaching or speaking to a student. Encourage them to use them in class and at home. Also, continue to have weekly vocabulary quizzes so that your student can remember them properly!

Display Them in Class

Create a wall of all the vocabulary words in your classroom. Ask your students to be creative by creating photos of themselves that put the words into action. Or you can just use Voki for a quick Vocabulary Rundown.

Let us know how you teach vocabulary in class!

kUntil next time,

Eva D.

The Voki Team

1560505_10152516453053764_8553617582835278394_nBio: Eva is the Community Manager for Voki and is part of the Marketing Team at Oddcast. She enjoys playing the piano and knitting on her free time. (She’s also a Rubik’s cube master!) She loves to hear your feedback and comments for Voki!

Happy Thanksgiving from Voki!

November 27, 2014

Voki wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! We hope you would enjoy your turkey this evening! Here’s a Thanksgiving poem that we know you’ll enjoy:

Thanksgiving Feasting

By Joanna Fuchs

When the Halloween pumpkins are gone,
And the leaves have all fallen to ground,
When the air has turned windy and cold,
Then Thanksgiving will soon be around.

Thoughts of loved ones all feasting together,
Pleasant pictures from past times appear
To dwell in each heart and each mind–
Then Thanksgiving is finally here!

The kitchen has scrumptious aromas,
The dining room looks oh, so fine,
Decorations with pilgrims and turkeys,
And now we are ready to dine!

First the napkins are placed on our laps;
Now the prayer for the meal to be blessed,
Then we stuff the good food in our tummies,
And we hope for it all to digest!

Until next time,

The Voki Team

Voki Guest Blogger: Heather Loomis

November 25, 2014

1Kindergarten has been using the library to research land forms.

Each class researched a different land form.  I love to use KWL Charts with young researchers.  We started with a group brainstorm session listing what we Knew about the land form.  Then we discussed what we Wanted to know.  The students came up with some great questions.

We then researched using websites, library books, and the Pebblego Database, which we found to be very helpful. We met back up for a group discussion about interesting facts we Learned during our research.  We kept track of all of our great facts using a flip chart on the Promethean board.

We used Voki to report on our findings.  After choosing a background and a character head relating to our land form, we had another class discussion about the most important research findings that the students wanted to share.

River Research

Lake Research

Ocean Research

We had fun with this activity, and I was very impressed with the curiosity and enthusiasm for research the Kindergarten students exhibited.  The also loved the Voki program.  It is always a hit!

_________________________________________________

Follow Heather on Twitter: @LoomisLibarian

Visit her blog: http://oldunionlibrary.blogspot.com/ 

Voki Tip of the Week: Adding Voki on Canvas

November 18, 2014

Many educators asked us if there is a way to add Voki to their Canvas account/assignments to help enhance their students learning experience. Well, we did find a way to do so and it is very easy! Just follow these steps and you will have a Voki added in no time:

1. Go on voki.com

2. Publish your Voki.

3. Select your Voki size.

4. Click to copy your Voki embed code.

Wiki1

 

5. Go into your Canvas account and find your course.

1

6. Find your assignment.

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7. Click HTML Editor.

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8. Paste Voki Embed code into the editor.

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9. Add “s” after all http.

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10. Save or publish your assignment.

11. Your Voki will be added to your Canvas Assignment!

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Easy right? Have fun and enjoy!

Until next time,

Eva D.

The Voki Team

Students: Ask for Help in Class

November 11, 2014

AskForHelp_Logo_2Asking for help can be very hard but it is very important if you want to learn more in class. Knowing how to ask for help is a very important skill to have. You may have a question about last night’s homework or something you want your teacher to clarify in class. Here are some helpful tips on how you can ask for help in class:

  • It is ok to ask for help.

Remember that it is ok to ask for help. You are in class to learn so asking questions can help you learn more.  If you are afraid to ask your teacher to help, try to ask your classmate to help! If you sit back and not ask for help, you are only hurting yourself.

  • Don’t be afraid.

Being afraid to ask for help is a major problem for students. They are afraid that other students would tease them. Never be embarrassed and do not worry about other students judging you. If you have a personal problem, talk to your teacher privately during a break and they will do their best to help you.

 

Voki Tip: If you are afraid to ask your teacher for help during class, send him/her an email afterwards. You can even create a Voki that can help you out!

Until next time,

Eva D.

The Voki Team

1560505_10152516453053764_8553617582835278394_nBio: Eva is the Community Manager for Voki and is part of the Marketing Team at Oddcast. She enjoys playing the piano and knitting on her free time. (She’s also a Rubik’s cube master!) She loves to hear your feedback and comments for Voki!

Helping Students with ADHD/ADD

November 6, 2014

Impulse-ControlWhat is ADHD/ADD? It stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder/Attention Deficit Disorder. It affects about 3-5% of children and adults in the United States. Some characteristics of ADHD/ADD include:

  • Inattentiveness, but not hyperactive or impulsive
  • Hyperactive and impulsive, but can concentrate
  • Inattentive, hyperactive, and impulsive

You might notice one of your students who may have ADHD/ADD. You can make a difference in your student’s life by helping them. Here are some ways that you can start:

Have seating arrangements.

If you know your student can be distracted when they site near a window or door, move their seat to a different location. It might be helpful to sit your student with ADHD/ADD in front of your desk to help them focus. It is also useful if you arrange your classroom seating in rows instead of sitting around tables or facing one another.

Provide clear and concise instructions.

Give instructions one at a time. If the instructions are complex, break it down into smaller parts. Also, you can have several other students repeat your instructions to give the student with ADHD/ADD the opportunity to hear it. Make sure that the assignment is not too long or too difficult because they might avoid doing it.

Work with parents.

It is best if you partner up with their parents to make sure that their child is ready to learn in the classroom. Ask parents to communication with you regularly about the problems their child experiences in school. Have the parents help their child organize their papers or homework during the evening and help them prepare for school next day.

If you have a student that has ADHD/ADD in your class, let us know how you help them!

Until next time,

Eva D.

The Voki Team

1560505_10152516453053764_8553617582835278394_nBio: Eva is the Community Manager for Voki and is part of the Marketing Team at Oddcast. She enjoys playing the piano and knitting on her free time. (She’s also a Rubik’s cube master!) She loves to hear your feedback and comments for Voki!

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