Thursday, January 30, 2014

Five for Friday: The FETC Edition

I *should* be heading to bed right now, but I have several tabs open in my browser that I’m not ready to close yet. As a compromise to myself, I decided to blog about a few things I’ve discovered this week at FETC.

(I’ll be busy conferencing and driving back home, so I’m writing my Five for Friday on a Thursday night. )



This morning we heard Lucien Vattel. He is CEO of GameDesk and founder of Educade. While I have dabbled with gaming in the classroom before, I had honestly tuned out previous mentions to this resource. When he started to show specific example during the keynote, I started frantically taking notes.

I already signed up for a free account and have filled my backpack with games and activities I want to try with my students. We saw examples of Motion Math, Dragon Box, Jason’s Rollercoaster, and Reach for the Sun being used in the classroom. I love how you can search for the games by age and topic!


Wednesday night at the exhibit hall opening event, I got to meet a celebrity.


For those of you who are not elementary teachers, that is Moby from BrainPop.  Today I went to a session on games and assessment. One of the resources mentioned was Game Up from BrainPop.


What impressed me most is that BrainPop has compiled games from other sources as well as their own creations. Again, these are easy to search and have many potential classroom applications.


I’ve been bit by the augmented reality bug. I am still so impressed! I posted about using colAR in the STEAM Lab earlier this week. I was even more impressed when they names colAR one of the four WOW resources at the Tech Share.

I plan to use Aurasma to add some augmented reality to our cardboard arcade, so I went to a session today about using augmented reality in the classroom.


Karen was fantastic. I do not yet have iPads in my lab, but I discovered some computer based AR sites, too. This video is one worth checking out.

I’m also thinking about using Heart Cam to give AR Valentines to my students. Nothing says, "Happy Valentine's Day!" quite like a virtual beating human heart from your STEAM teacher. I’m still working out the details, but I think it just might work!


This was another WOW from the Tech Share. The idea is that you can remotely access programs from your Mac or PC on your iPad. The video explains it better than I can.

It is $49.99 for a year subscription, but as a conference attendee at the TechShare, I was given a subscription to try out through the end of the year. I’m excited to try it out once I get home. I’ll let you know how it goes!


The last one is too hard to pick, so I'll write about two. I guess that makes it Six for Thursday, but that's okay.

I went to an fantastic session on Google Apps. I just looked at the presenter info and discovered that one of the two presenters was Susan from The Digital Scoop.

Our eChalk subscription should be going live in a couple of weeks, so I was looking for ways to use Google Drive with my students. I was taking notes like crazy to keep up with all the fantastic things Jason and Susan have done with their classes. Thank goodness for Evernote!

I also went to a session about STEAM. I usually walk away from STEAM sessions disappointed because the presenter spent too much time talking about what STEAM is and not enough time talking about the ‘how’ and the available resources. Michael from 21Centuryedtech found a nice balance between the two. He said that he has a blog post coming up about STEAM resources that I can't wait to read.


I’ve spent the last two nights in my hotel room pouring over the resources from the workshops, sessions, and speakers. I have quite the ‘to do’ list of things to try out when I get back.

I miss my two little ones and the Irishman, but I am going to enjoy one last night in a bed of my own without anyone to wake me up!


  1. I showed my coworker the colAR app website- she's excited to let her four year old play with it!

  2. Holy smokes - thank you for all of the fabulous resources! I can't wait to read more about what you think is best! Thank you!!!

    Lucky to Be in First

  3. THis post is fabulous! My students love using QR codes. I keep finding exciting ways to use them in the classroom.

    Love the picture of you and Moby!

    A Rocky Top Teacher

  4. Thanks for sharing what you learned at FETC. I can't wait to hear from my friends that also attended. I got a Powerpoint today from one of their presentations, but I haven't checked it out yet.
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'