Software
Pixie Icon

Pixie

Software for student publishing and creativity.

Wixie Icon

Wixie

Online student publishing and creativity platform.

Frames Icon

Frames

Create animations, digital stories, and stop-motion.

Share Icon

Create web sites, epubs, and presentations.

Professional Learning
Services
Pixie Icon

Pixie

Software for student publishing and creativity.

Wixie Icon

Wixie

Online student publishing and creativity platform.

Frames Icon

Frames

Create animations, digital stories, and stop-motion.

Share Icon

Share

Create web sites, epubs, and presentations.

Tech4Learning Blog
Tech4Learning Blog
Tech4Learning Blog
Tech4Learning Blog

Move beyond the book report

Posted by Melinda Kolk on Oct 28, 2014 1:08:00 PM

The book report may be the most dreaded elementary classroom assignment of all time. The elementary Common Core writing standard for argument includes opinion pieces about books, encouraging many teachers to incorporate some form of literature review rather than worksheets filled with information.

We do want students to comprehend a book’s who, what, when, and so on, but a book report, even digital, that is a simple summary of characters plot isn’t any better than the worksheets we’re all keen to avoid.

A regurgative book report is devoid of thought and presents no argument. Being assigned such a task is an open invitation to copy and paste a summary from a wiki or even the book’s dust jacket. While we can police student work for plagiarism, we can also do much better.

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Topics: pixie, creativity software, Wixie, literature, comprehension,

Wixie or Pixie?

Posted by Melinda Kolk on Sep 25, 2014 10:09:00 AM

“Should I use Wixie or Pixie?”

We often hear this question from educators looking to do creative work in their classroom. Wixie and Pixie seem like they do the same thing, and they aren’t sure which tool they should use.

The answer almost always starts with “Wixie is Pixie in the cloud.” But this response is only part of the picture.

Both Wixie and Pixie provide easy-to-use tools for students to create projects with their paintings, their writing, and their voice. Both Wixie and Pixie give students many options for sharing what they have created.

This is where Pixie ends, but Wixie keeps going. The big differences are how and where students access Wixie and the additional tools teachers have to integrate Wixie into their classroom.

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Topics: pixie, creativity software, Wixie, cloud-computing, iPad, Android, 21st century classroom, chromebooks

Reflect Constructivism

Posted by Joseph Machado on Aug 4, 2011 11:32:00 AM

“Learners are given the freedom to think, to question, to reflect, and to interact with ideas, objects, and others — in other words, to construct meaning.” -Brooks and Brooks.

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Topics: pixie, creativity software, 21st century classroom, understanding, constructivism

Science and Action Research in Your Classroom

Posted by Joseph Machado on Mar 22, 2011 8:59:00 AM

After reading a white paper put out by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory - Scientist-Teacher Partnerships as Professional Development: An Action Research Study, I began to think of the continuous push in our educational system on STEM. What's the most effective method of increasing student awareness in science?

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Topics: creativity software, 21st century classroom, productivity software, professional development, STEM, action research

Building Literacy Skills with Pixie

Posted by Joseph Machado on Mar 10, 2011 8:39:00 AM

Early literacy is such a complex topic involving many issues like whole language, phonics, development, natural environment, direct teaching, and intervention.  How does one create a balanced approach to early literacy instruction through purposeful, functional use and meaningful context within a print-rich environment?  I believe the key ingredient is engagement and Pixie the tool to help with strengthening these skills in a 21st century classroom.

Using the National Early Literacy Panel’s 2002 research findings I have come up with ways in which Pixie can support their vision of the elements of a successful reading program.

For Alphabetic Principle (phonics and phonemic awareness) students:
  • Use the the stamp tool to stamp letters and form new words
  • Create letter trading cards
  • Complete various activities in the activities folder – rhyming, beginning sounds, etc.
For Fluency students:
  • Record their voice practicing beginning sounds of words
  • Retell a story focusing on tone of voice
  • Graph words per minute on various passages
For Vocabulary students:
  • Create a digital dictionary with original illustrations showing the meaning of the word
  • Create and record an original rebus story
  • Create vocabulary trading cards
For Comprehension students:
  • Use graphic organizers in the activities folder to map out the elements of a story
  • Create a new book cover for a story they have read
  • Create a video summarizing the story supporting it with original illustrations
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Topics: pixie, creativity, creativity software, engage, literacy, 21st century classroom, technology integration, fluency

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