Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Interactive Word Sorts

WOW!! July ALREADY??? Where did June go? And if you're like me, you're already panicking because JULY means that AUGUST is next and that means time for school is getting closer....and I have SO much to do!

A few weeks ago, I helped teach a technology course for teachers in my district. The course was about our "not as smart as yours" boards. One of the things I shared with that class is a tip I am going to share with you today.

My tip today is about word sorts!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE word sorts!! My kids love word sorts! I make sure I have a word sort out weekly. Its not a required station, but one almost all of my kids will make sure they do!

Last year, I had a student that didn't speak. I know....teacher's dream, right? Not so much... Because the rest of the class made up for him. When I say he didn't speak, I mean EVER....at school. He talked at home. He talked in other social situations. School.....total silence.

We tried to encourage him to whisper. I couldn't even hear his whispers. I tried reading lips....he didnt move his mouth so there was no reading lips. The SLP said we needed to require him to talk to do things because he COULD. SO, if he wanted to go to the bathroom, he had to ask. I got a barely audible whisperette......that's a micro-whisper if you're interested.

THEN I found this little gem. I don't know how I came across it....I am sure it was by accident. But boy, am I glad I did!Something about this appealed to him SO much, it made him talk. This is an interactive word sort. NOW, before you ooh and ahh, let me tell you the upsides and downsides to this.
YOU can customize it to sort  up to 4 categories.
 YOU create the words.
YOU create the categories.
YOU can change the colors of backgrounds and fonts.
YOU can give them a check button complete with a postive message when they succeed and an encouraging note when they aren't correct on something.
YOU can reset the word sort and let them try again.
It works with a projector/computer setup or a smart board (or a "not as smart as yours" board)

Now, for the downsides:
You can save it.. (at least that's what they claim)..but I have tried and tried and cried and grabbed all my techy friends to watch me do this step by step, but I can't get it to reopen after it's saved. Which means.....it's a one-day only word sort. I know,.......tears....sigh.
I've followed their directions....maybe its my school software....but I tried it at home too....nope. Nada.
Sorry...if you get it to work, please don't tell me unless you have a magic solution that will make it work.....or if you plan to send Channing Tatum to give me tech support....sigh!

Here is the link:

It also has a scrambled sentence maker:


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