Noel Erskine, Technology Coordinator Norris Schools

Welcome to my technology blog.
Follow me on Twitter, @noelerskine
Noel's Home Page

WOW - A ton of great sites, apps gone free, Google tools and more in this awesome list for the week!

Friday, May 30, 2014

Some awesome website and tools:

WOW - K-5 NESA practice testing made fun!  Some great resources from Medowlane LPS school - <---A MUST if you are a K-5 Nebraska teacher for helping students practice for NESA - Makes it fun to learn!

7 Great Web Tools To Help Students Study Collaboratively

The Ultimate Guide for Creating Dynamic Flipping Books from Google Docs (Uses FlipSnack to acomplish this.) 

This online tool is very similar to the free Educreations app PixiClip

Rewordify - Allow you to take text from anywhere and adjust the reading level to meet the needs of all of your students. -Make ANY text differentiated instantly!

Sites and Apps for creating MULTIMODAL TEXTS

Cool Math Games for Kids – 45 Math Game Apps for Kids

The Epic BYOD Toolchest (51 Tools You Can Use Now) 

20 Ways To Use Edmodo In The Classroom 

Interactive US map with education statistics for each state: <-- This is cool for EDU stats.

30 More Websites To Download Stock Photos & Royalty-Free Images

17 Cartoon Videos Explaining the Internet and Internet Safety to Kids

What are some new sites and tools?? This Symbaloo was put together for just that purpose: From NE Nebraska Tech Fair 2014! 

10 Fun Tools To Easily Make Your Own Infographics

For the home owner - Windows maintenance, done dirt-cheap via @pcworld 

This one is worth another mention in my lists!  Blendspace allows you to blend your videos, pictures, worksheets, fiels, PDF's etc... into a learning timeline for your students to discover.  Here is an example of one on Plate Tectonics Browse the gallery to see what other teachers are sharing, or log in (Free) to create your own. 

Twitter tools:
5 Creative Ways To Use Your Twitter Favorites | Social Media Examiner

The Teacher's Guide To Twitter - Via Edudemic

5 Creative Ways To Use Your Twitter Favorites

So you want some IOS (iPhone/iPad) apps:

10 Best Geography Apps for Kids

Use this list to find the BEST apps for middle schoolers 

Add Interactive Elements to Videos With TouchCast Awesome App!

3 Interactive iPad Math Apps for Primary Grades, That Teachers Can Easily Implement

The Popular Animoto Video Maker is Now Available for iPad (Remember - register for a teacher account to get advanced features for free!)

Grammar Jammers Primary Edition for iOS is free normally $2.99:

TopNotes Pro - Take Notes, Annotate PDF & Sync Notebook with Dropbox for iPad is free for a limited time; normally $4.99: 

Great Google tools and add-ins:

15 Best Google Drive Add-Ons for Education 

8 Things You Didn't Know You Could Do With Google Drive

A Google DRIVE Cheat Sheet via @ShakeUpLearning  (PDF is attached via this email.) 

Read & Write - A Great Chrome App That is Now Free for Teachers

Did you know you can easily add musical notations in a Google Doc?

Teacher's Visual Guide on Giving Audio Feedback to Students on Google Drive  Thanks to Mr. Ruhl for finding this one.

15 Best Google Drive Add-Ons for Education via @coolcatteacher

11 Chrome Extensions That Will Super-Power Your Gmail Experience

Math apps, Google Tools, free apps & more in this final school edition for May 2014

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Web sites and tools:
I have promoted Socrative in the past... here is another one that is great for online quizzing with any device. - InfuseLearning 

Want to teach online safety - Then Netsmartz is the site for you! NetSmartz Workshop is an interactive, educational program of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children® (NCMEC) that provides age-appropriate resources to help teach children how to be safer on- and offline. 

If you teach Math - These are for you!
Desmos Graph functions, plot tables of data, evaluate equations, explore transformations, and much more – for free!
GeoGebra - Dynamic mathematics & science for learning and teaching - The software is free, and they have a Chrome App too!

Google tools and tips:
How Google Docs Can Help You Come Across As A Professional 

Four ways to find free images to use legally with Google Apps

Android tips and tricks: 
Pro tip: How to work with Google Docs offline using Android - Jack Wallen walks you through the process of working with Google Docs offline on your Android device

IOS apps for the iPad and/or iPhone:

Here are a few for the younger kids:

Incredible Word Lens app now free following Google acquisition IOS and Android apps available. Point your camera to a sign, and it translates the sign to any of 60 languages! 

Some great web tools, Google Tools, and a sneak peak at Google Classroom - My tech tools for the week.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Websites and online tools:

A Quick Guide To Keeping Students Safe Online - Via Edudemic

7 free Web-based Tools for Creating Short Video Stories

Seven Free Online Whiteboard Tools for Teachers and Students

Google Tools & Tips and Tricks: 

Ready to try the new Google Docs and Sheets Apps? Here's all you need to know! 

New- Google Docs Now Lets You Crop, Rotate, and Add Borders to Images 

Google Classroom is coming! Hear how Classroom can transform schools and learning. 90 teachers and 1,300 students have tried it so far 

Letter Feed Messenger Provides a Better Way to Track Changes to Google Documents - Nice Article via Richard Byrne

Google A-Z - A nice listing of Google Products and Tools that are available. I bet you do not know many of these! 

Awesome new feature coming to Google Apps! -Classroom Coming this fall
Two teachers who are using Google Classroom Pilot now say they will not use a classroom website next year.…  (Thaks to @mickie_mueller  for this video link.) This sounds awesome!  Even the non-tech savvy teachers had no problem easily picking it up. 

This product is designed for ease of use but adds a lot of functionality only available via scripts in the past. AKA... Doctopus or Gclass Folders. If you can create a Doc ... you can use Google Classroom. If you or other teachers you know of might be interested in an early preview this June, please encourage them to request an invitation for Classroom.

Create some awesome posters for your classroom:

PixTeller - Turn Any Words Into Amazing Images 

IOS Apps:
Adobe Voice (Free) Provides a Great Way to Create Narrated Picture Stories 

Great YouTube Channel for iPad apps from the University of Nebraska - iPads in the classroom

This weeks web tools, apps, and more. Some great ones from the NETA14 Conference too!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Web Tools and Resources:

Try the Getty Search Gateway to Find Neat Historical Images (More Than 85,000 of Them) Great for info graphics

Check out -annotate text, add questions, & upload pictures & media to a piece of text. Comment form NETA14 was...  A must for any teacher! LEGO digital designer. Can use on a Mac or PC (No app yet.) incredible correlation with textbooks giving help with lots of information... throw away your textbook.

Spanning the Technology Divide - A NETA 2014 presentation.

GoNoodle - 5 minute brain breaks - There’s a short brain break activity for every part of the day. Calm the classroom or energize your students depending on the time of day.

Make Your Images Interactive - ThingLink. ... Did you know that you can embed ThingLink images almost anywhere? is an awesome site. A virtual bulletin board. Great of brainstorming or sharing take aways or big ideas. Web based, but works on 

15+ Ways of Teaching Every Student to Code (Even Without a Computer)

Take your Students on an awesome visual filedtrip without leaving your classroom!  •  360° Aerial Panorama  •  3D Virtual Tours Around the World

Browse the Digital Public Library of America

A free Social Studies website "Go Social Studies Go"

Favorite Presentation Tools for Chromebook Users | A Listly List -There are a lot on this list that I have not even checked out. 

Vocaroo is a free and very easy-to-use online audio recording creator. There is no login required and the audio file is stored on the Vocaroo server and cannot be downloaded.  A great tutorial can be found at

IOS and Android Apps:

25 Best Free Android Apps 

Receipts Collector iPhone App Scans, Stores And Organizes Receipts - Not sure if too many will need this for school, but it gets great reviews. This article has a few nice scanners listed, and the Fine Scanner looks great!

Reading Level:
This Juicy Studio resource will analyze the text of a URL.  The information includes total sentences and words, the number of syllables in all words, the percentage of words with 3 or more syllables, as well as the Flesch-Kincaid Grade level.

Augmented Reality Resources: 
Thanks to Neal Topp, University of Nebraska at Omaha for these great augmented reality (AR) resources.
Learn AR Biology
uses Augmented Reality technology to help students explore and discover a variety of subjects by combining the real world with virtual content using a
web camera and an internet connection. All 10 of the learnAR augmented reality resources are available at no charge. All you need to do is print the markers from the resource pack and use your webcam to get started.
is a
 Free/Paid site brings student coloring activities to life using Augmented Reality. No accounts are necessary unless you intend to buy some of the advanced coloring packages. This site is easy to use and is a powerful strategy for storytelling and creative writing.
32 Augmented Reality Apps for the Classroom 
from edshelf is a 
web site that lists 32 educational mobile apps that utilize augmented reality technology in learning environments. Point your device’s camera at something that the app recognizes, and it will generate a 3D animation or video superimposed over whatever is on your camera’s screen.  
buildAR is a great site if you would like to learn how to build your own Augmented Reality environments visit.

Amazing foreign language tool! 
Forvo is the largest pronunciation guide in the world. (Free)  Ever wondered how a word is pronounced? Ask for that word or name, and another user will pronounce it for you.  They do have apps too, but they charge a small fee for them.  IOS ($2.99)  Android (Free)

Google apps and tools:

More amazing tools for Google Docs users: 
Are you still having students hand in papers and giving them feedback??? Why!  Go paperless with Google Docs... and add some awesome voice comments with Kaizena. It is so simple to use, and integrates reight with Google Drive.  (Combine this with the new Doctopus add-in, and your life will be simplified!)  8 Minute tutorial for more info. It's so easy to use... just jump in and try it!

New mobile apps for Docs and Sheets — work offline and on the go. Read more about them here, or just get the apps on Google Play [Docs] [Sheets] and in the App Store [Docs] [Sheets].