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Young people need time to watch, wonder, wiggle, weave, wrap, wave, and wish. They need time to explore, question, search, evaluate, synthesize, create, and communicate ideas. How do you and your students make the best use of time?

Try It!
Let's use simple graphic software. Use Grapher to create a simple graph. Use ALT-PRINT SCREEN and paste the visual into PowerPoint. Use bubbles to analyze your document. Then, use Create a Graph visualize data for one of the following topics: Wrecks R Us - Colors of Car Paint; ADA Advocates - Check Parking Spaces; Equity in Trees - Conifers/Deciduous in Your Yard; Society Against Gas Guzzlers. Create a graph, paste it in Word, write a letter.

Keep It Simple

Many educators are reluctant to use technology because of the time investment. The key is to balance production and use time with needs and standards. Rather than using the digital camera throughout the geology unit, focus on recording and analyzing a single location. Rather than a far-reaching family history project, start with the stories behind a single photograph.

Larry and BenArrion as a baby

Provide access to data sites or visual galleries:

Try It!
Design a focused activity using a simple data or graphics set. Create a starter that includes some of the following elements:
You (pretend) are a …
Your mission is to (solve, create…)
Use these photos to …
Use these websites to …
Your project must include to …
Then, compare, share,…

Limit Production Time

You don't need expensive equipment for video production. Most digital cameras have the option to create short videos. Consider videos that are 30 seconds to 3 minutes. Try some interesting projects. Use Elevator Moods as a model for simple video productions. Or, check out the CellFlix Festival guidelines. Check out locally produced videos at YouTube such as Summer Reading Program.

Try It!
Adapt the Elevator Moods idea for your own short digital camera assignment.

Create a 1 minute movie with a beginning, middle, and end using the following possible topics: Mystery Movie (The Math Mystery, The Music Mystery, The Science Mystery), I Was There…, A tour of …, or PSA (Public Service Announcement).

Focus Attention

Googling is time consuming, Considering pre-selecting one great, age-appropriate resources along with two or three varied resources. For health, consider KidsHealth and the Cool Spot.

Try It!
Use the Scholastic Article Archive for a real-world reading assignment. Also check out the Reading the Writing ideas for elementary and middle schools.

Find Help

Locate assistance through peers and mentors, technology tutorials, lesson idea websites, and effective educational resources. For example, Breaking News providing text and audio for news stories along with quality instructional materials. Use Teacher Tap to locate professional development resources.

Repeat, Reinforce

Rather than learning many different technology tools, spend time exploring your existing tools and expanding your skills. For example, create electronic charts using the table feature in Microsoft Word. Ask students to create a chart highlighting the basic information about each biome using the Missouri Botanical Gardens website.

Check out the Five Kingdoms Chart , Simple Machines (complete), Biomes, Magnets, and Energy (complete) Word documents.

Consider the same activity for PowerPoint-based Assignments - Coins PPT, farm PPT, numbers PPT, Magnets PPT, Simple Machines PPT, Biomes PPT, Energy PPT

Try It!
Create your own "workspace starter" that could be adapted. Use the following PowerPoint Sidekicks for ideas.

Time Essential
“I use time wisely.”

Developed by Annette Lamb, 6/05. Updated 6/07.