What's still in our teaching bags.

Lydia’s Bag

Here’s the list of what I was using at the start of the year.

  • Color-coded folders I’m still using the folders to keep my classes’ work separate. This has been working really well for me.
  • iPad I’ve been using the iPad less this year than I used to. Because of how my new room is set up, I use the projector less, and so am not really using the iPad to control it.
  • Quis the Owl, the Imperfect Sheep, Roman Bridal Veil I’m still using these frequently. The students love when I toss the animals out to the tables for them to hold during discussions.
  • Stamp I’m still using this to keep track of homework. Students in my middle school classes have started drawing ornate boxes for me to stamp inside as well as ornate boxes labeled “don’t stamp here.”
  • Latin Mallet Still useful. I’ve also added in individual whiteboards as an option when we’re doing grammar review, and the kids like that too.
  • Flags Very useful when I’m keeping track of where the different classes are.
  • Pencil case, pens I’m still using these. I’ve ordered an eyedropper fountain pen to play with for a larger capacity of ink for grading.
  • Silent pencil sharpener This is so nice to have! The students now go for it over the electric pencil sharpener.

Emily’s Bag

Here’s what I had in my bag at the start of the year.
Bubo the Owl and the Golden Snitch Ball: Still useful as always! Gives a very Hogwarts feel to the classroom.
My iPad and relevant power cords/connectors: Alesia the iPad is full of Latin apps and other fun educational tools for my classroom. Often, it is used when I need to project a text on the board. I use the app Evernote to make notes about how class went and keep a teaching notebook.  Also, the app ClassDojo is fantastic for making private notes about student performance. And of course, never underestimate the power of the Edmodo App!
Pencil Case:  Still the same deal!– 2 Purple Pens (for writing passes), my new purple fountain pen for grading, 2 blue pens (for other notes), USB flashdrive, 1 pad of yellow post-its, and 1 pad of purple post-its.
Moleskine notebooks: The notebooks have been replaced by Evernote. Poor Notebooks.
Class folders:  Still the same.  I love this system so much!!– I have color-coordinated folders for each class, in which I keep work to be graded and returned. On the front of each folder, I keep a post-it note of who needs to turn in the assignment/take the quiz.
Color-coordinated Popsicle sticks: This, I have largely given up on.
Teaching Binder: Still using this.  Love it more than ever.  My purple binder with attendance lists and paper version of my gradebook. 🙂
I have added:
Post-it flags: color coded for different classes so that I can mark where they are in the book.
Individual Whiteboards, which we use for grammar and vocab review, as well as bits of composition here and there.  The students LOVE them!

Ben’s Bag

How the year started.
I still use all the physical elements I mentioned at the beginning of the year. Perhaps the better update would be some of the software and apps I’ve found useful.
Simplenote works on Mac and mobile platforms (though not for PC, unfortunately.) It is a basic note saver that I use to keep my lesson plans organized. I prefer it over Evernote since I want to sandbox my lesson plans from general note-gathering.
Google Drive is without a doubt the most useful collaboration suite of software I’ve ever used. The simple fact that students and teachers can create, share, and collaborate between and amongst themselves is its biggest selling point. For more advanced awesomeness, there are scripts such as FormMule, Doctopus, and gClassFolders that allow a higher level of organization and sharing. I’ll do a post soon to explain their usefulness.
Twitter has been a great professional development tool. It allows me to keep an ear to new developments in the classics sphere, collaborate with other teachers (from all over the world,) read tweets in Latin, and interact with students in novel ways. This, too, deserves its own post.
eduCanon.com is a site I’ve used to curate videos. You can take a Youtube video (whether you created it or someone else did) and add pauses to it. During the pauses, you can add questions for students to answer as they watch; you get formative feedback about the assigned viewing and you’ve made the video more interactive for the student.
Ponderi.ng is an intriguing idea that let’s the teacher assign news articles for students to read and comment on. It has an interesting and intuitive interface, and I see the evolution of this tool allowing students to comment (in Latin!) on articles (in Latin!) If you’d like to help translate some of the “sentiments” into Latin, leave a comment below and I’ll show you the list.
These are just a few of many burgeoning tools. As I find new ones, I’ll be sure to keep you informed.

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