Ms. Horning’s Technological Classroom

The world of education has seen a lot of change in the last few years, courtesy of the COVID-19 pandemic which turned schooling into a digital affair. Teachers and students alike were thrown into the unfamiliar world of Zoom m meetings and new digital tools designed to enrich online learning. This semester has introduced m e to new technological tools I didn’t kn ow existed at the beginning of the year that are n ops regularly used in m y lesson planning and teaching.

This portfolio will walk you through many different types of lessons utilizing these new online tools. Here are a few of my favorites!

Follow along with me to learn new and creative ways to engage your students through technology!

Zones Of Regulation (Final Post)

As we all know, the last few years of quarantined have pulled our students out of school and sent them home, where for many of them their social development continued to grow, at a much slower rate. School for many students is a large portion of their social development, working with teachers and other students their own age teaches them how to interact with the world, how to monitor their own emotions, and how to socially engage with other people. When they were sent home, many students interacted only with their immediate families for almost two years, some students only communicating with their friends via online platforms. This lack of social contact has created classrooms full of students in desperate need of social emotional lessons.

Photo by 1499841 from Pixabay

At the elementary level, the zones of regulations are an excellent tool to teach students to identify their emotions and respond appropriately to manage them. In my classroom, we created wall posters that show students the emotions in each zone and give them the chance to visually see what their emotions look like. We’ve been learning about the zones of regulation all year, and we’ve done many lessons on each zone and how students can manage their emotions responsibly in each zone. This lesson I’m sharing with you today is an accumulation lesson where students are able to work together to teach me about each zone of regulation.

I’ve created a slide on Jamboard for each zone of regulation and I’m going to split my class into four groups, one for each zone. Each group is going to be in charge of making a slide for the zone of regulation they’ve been assigned. Their slide can include pictures, text, drawings about which emotions are included in that zone, what this zone feels like, and ways to manage their emotions in this zone. Jamboard is a fun, easy online tool to help my class collaborate with one another to create a slide they are proud of. Once every group is finished, each group will stand and teach the class about their zone of regulation.

By the end of this lesson, I want students to be able to accumulate their learning and verbalize different aspects from each zone of regulation. This lesson uses Jamboard to facilitate collaboration, promote easy presenting, and encourage creativity to accomplish this goal. I am excited to see what my students come up with and hope you’ve been inspired to perhaps introduce social emotional learning into your classroom this year.

Addition Adventures

When teaching students addition, these forms can help guide their learning experience. The pre-assessment can show which students may need more support and potentially help show which strategies may help each student succeed in addition. The branching assessment can help students explore the different addition strategies and teach them multiple ways to approach an addition problem.

Grow grow GROW butterflies

This “grow grow grow butterflies” lesson guides students through the butterfly life cycle by following a group of butterfly eggs as they grow into butterflies. The Google site gives them a home base for this unit, teaching them about the life cycle of a butterfly and giving them access to all the links needed to engage with the content.

Adventure Books

“Okay second graders, today we are going to make our very own adventure books! I want you to pull on your thinking caps and think about your most exciting adventure EVER. Then we’re going to get our iPads out and make our very own books that tell the class about your adventure. “

Have students browse the example book first and then have them get started on their very own in the book creator app.


The 7 Wonders of the World

“Okay 2nd graders! Today we are going to put on our best explorer hats and dive into a new map! We’ve been exploring lots of different maps this week and today we are going to look at the 7 wonders of the world.”

“Can anyone raise their hand and tell me what the 7 wonders of the world are?” Wait for student responses.

“Okay class, the 7 wonders of the world are 7 incredible places around the world. We are going to get our iPads out and explore all 7 of them! Ready… Set… Go!” Once students have their iPads out and are sitting quietly, instruct them to open the MyMaps link on their SeeSaw page. Once students have opened the link, give them some time to explore.

“Okay class, so on this map, there are 7 different spots for you to look at! Each spot has some pictures and a really fun video to teach you allll about that wonder of the world. I need you to pay close attention to what you’re learning, because once you’re done exploring, you are going to work with your table group to make your own map teaching us about one of the 7 wonders.”

“Give me a thumbs up if you understand what we’re doing today!”

The teacher will walk around offering guidance as needed or pushing students to think deeper. The MyMaps will give students the chance to learn about each wonder of the world before they choose their favorite, and then to work with a partner to use the details from the video to create a more detailed map of one of the wonders of the world. They can add images, additional videos, and words to the map to teach their classmates even more facts and details about the place they chose.

7 Wonders of the World Map:

Practicing Kindness

This social emotional lesson would take place in a Kindergarten/ first grade classroom. It will be taught after the Second Step lesson on kindness to give students extra practice noticing kind acts and recognizing how being kind makes a person feel.

“Okay class! Today we’ve been talking a lot about kindness through our Second Step lesson and with some of the books we’ve read aloud. Now I want each of you to practice what we’ve learned on your own!

Please get out your iPads and click on the assignment for today. You’re going to watch a fun video and answer the questions as they come up. Some questions ask you to choose the right answer and some ask you to click the microphone and give your own answer. Listen to the instructions and raise your hand if you have a question. Ready…. Set… GO!”

Direct link to Video Here:

Jamboard Letter Matching Fun

Isabella Horning and Jack Taylor

At the end of this lesson, students will be able to identify words with the starting sounds from the letters Bb, Dd, Gg, and Jj. This is based off the kindergarten common standards:

Demonstrate understanding of spoken words, syllables, and sounds (phonemes).

Isolate and pronounce the initial, medial vowel, and final sounds (phonemes) in three-phoneme (consonant-vowel-consonant, or CVC) words.1 (This does not include CVCs ending with /l/, /r/, or /x/.)

“Hello friends! Today we are going to practice our letter sounds for the letters b, d, g, and j. I want everyone to open up their iPads to the SeeSaw app. Push that lightbulb button and you will see an assignment for today. Click on the image for the assignment and it should open up Jamboard! Once your screen looks like mine, put your pencil over your head.

Okay class, lets look at this first slide together. What letter is at the top? A, thats right! What sound does the letter A make? aaaa like apple! Nice job! What pictures do you all see on this slide?

Excellent job! Now notice how all the pictures, drawings, and words start with the aaa sound. I want you all to hit the arrow at the top and flip to the next slide. Now there are two letters! What letters do you see? Thats right! What sound does the letter Bb spell? Good and what sound does the letter Dd spell? Okay I want everyone to put on their thinking caps and think of words that start with those two sounds. Once you have an idea, you can draw it, write it, or find a picture of it and add it to a spot on the Jamboard under the letter it starts with.

Now remember, Jamboard is a learning tool, so we don’t use it to draw silly pictures or to mess with our friends ideas, we are responsible with it or we lose out on the ability to use it.

Once you’re done with Bb and Dd, hit that top arrow again and do the same thing with Gg and Jj. Put your pencil over your head when you’re all finished and we’ll look at all our classmates ideas together!”

For the teacher: If students are struggling to come up with ideas, prompt them to think about categories (“what are some foods you like? animals? etc.). Once students are finished, go through each letter section together as a class, verifying answers and showing different examples. If a student makes a mistake, frame it as a learning opportunity and have the class discover which sound that example word begins with. For example: oops, caterpillar does not begin with Dd, class can anyone fond which letter it does begin with?

This lesson utilizes individual student iPads to give every student a chance to contribute to the project. Seesaw is used as an organizational tool to make it easy for kindergarten students to access the Jam board through an app they’re already familiar with. Jamboard makes phonologic awareness fun and exciting for students, giving them a chance to draw, write, and find pictures.

I am from the City of Sunshine

Isabella Horning

I am from the city of sunshine,

That knows no dreary days.

I’m from the city of rebirth,

Where opportunity is endless,

And life is forever thriving.

I’m a native in a city of transplants,

Drawn to the endless sunshine.

Countless smiling faces of people,

Who have landed in the place they once dreamed they’d call home.

Happy hearts, happy minds,

I’m home in the city of spontaneous adventure in the sun.

Eager to explore and find new places,

I’m home where adventure is right outside your door.

Others say I’ll melt,

They can’t image living in the triple digits,

But there’s nowhere like the smiling faces of home,

And the comfort from the glowing rays of sun.

I used Microsoft sway because of the ease of creating a product. The images are easy to find and add and there are so many quick ways to design a document. I’m looking forward to creating different get to know me projects with this tool.

Drawing “What do you know [and wonder and learn]?”

Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding

Kindergarteners will engage in a pre-reading activity that asks them to list what they already know before they read and what they wonder (or want to learn) and then a post reading activity to demonstrate what they learned from the story and lesson. he teacher will introduce the story to the class, asking if anyone can predict what the story is going to be about based off the front cover. Once students answer, the teacher will preview the topic of the story and have students open the Google Drawing to have students paste their ideas onto the first section of the chart: the Know Section.

Once students have filled in that section, the teacher will ask students to share their posts and ideas with the class. Then students will be prompted to think about what they want to learn from reading the story and adding these questions and ideas to the second column of the Drawing: the Wonder section. Students will have the opportunity to share these ideas with the class before the teacher reads the story aloud.

The story will be read aloud, pausing frequently to ask comprehension based questions and ensuring that students are following the story line. Once the story has been read, the teacher will ask students to turn and talk about what they learned from reading the story, specifically around the main topic. For example if the story is about bugs, ask students to turn and talk about what they learned from the story about bugs. They will then reopen the google drawing and add their ideas from their conversation into the third and last column of the chart: the Learned column.

Students will have a chance to join in a class discussion about what they learned from the story before engaging in a writing/ drawing activity that follows the same theme they’ve been exploring.

Jamboard “Show me How You Feel”

Okay Kindergarteners! It’s been a BIG day full of BIG emotions and before we get started on our reading, I want to check in quickly to see how everyone is feeling!

I want you to put your thinking caps on and think REALLY hard about how you’re feeling right now. Check in with your body, check in with your mind, check in with what’s been happening today, and think of a way to show how you’re feeling.

Image by stokpic from Pixabay

Use your iPad to open up the link on our SeeSaw post: and find a way to show how you’re feeling. You can type how you’re feeling on a sticky note, draw a picture with the marker tool, or choose a photo that shows how you’re feeling right this moment!

Once everyone has their image on the Jamboard, each friend is going to have a few seconds to share with the class if they want to and explain why they chose to show their feelings in that way.

Image by manfredsteger from Pixabay

The Fabricated World of Social Media

Image by LoboStudioHamburg from Pixabay

As a young adult trying to find my place in a seemingly forever changing world, technology was a way to connect with the people around me, sharing a love for always knowing what other people are doing, and caring way too much about lives that have no effect on mine. I was phone obsessed, loving the way I could text my friends and stay in constant contact with the people I loved. But with technology, came social media. I was always checking the number of followers I had, the number of likes, and planning specific outfits and opportunities to create content that I knew my “friends” aka followers would like. Every photo was planned: a cute outfit, a happy smile, and a fun activity, designed specifically to create envy from other people looking in on these snapshots of moments in my life. At the lowest point in my life, my social media had me looking like I was at my happiest. If they didn’t see me every day, the people looking at my accounts would have absolutely no idea that I was finding it hard to function in my every day life.

Image by PDPics from Pixabay

Despite knowing how I was using social media, I failed to understand that others were using it in the same way, looking at peoples posts and feeling like I was missing the secret ingredient to happiness that everyone else had… according to their social media posts. Social media has created an entire world where we have no way of knowing what’s real and what’s fabricated to give viewers a certain idea or impression. It’s made everyones best moments seem like their every day moments, giving viewers a sense of envy and a feeling as if they’re missing out on something in their own lives.

Every like on social media brought me a feeling of elation, every new follower sparked a release of dopamine, making me feel like I was on top of the world- a winner in the world wide popularity contest. It was exhilarating and fun to create new photos and captions and videos, but it was exhausting to see everyone else best moments and constantly feel like I was trying to measure up.

Image by Conmongt from Pixabay

As an educator, and a future parent, the idea of my students and kids being raised on social media is both exciting… and terrifying to me. As someone who wasn’t allowed any sort of social media until I was 13, I still struggled immensely to keep my mind in a positive place and to teach myself that social media was not an accurate depiction of real life. Children seem to be joining the world of social media at such a young age, running headfirst into the world of admiration and basing your worth off of numbers on a screen.

I hope that all educators take the opportunity to teach children about the world of technology they’ve been born into and to caution them on the illegitimacy of everything they encounter. While this world of social media is fun and exciting, it’s not always what it seems to be, and often times, younger children are blind to that fact. I plan to teach my students that not everything they see online is real and that they can live a fulfilling, incredibly happy life without thinking about what other people think of them. It’s so important to live authentically and without thinking about other peoples opinions. All children deserve the chance to live their lives freely and on their own accord, worrying about what makes them happy and making choices that make their own hearts happy. I hope that all educators take the chance to stress that while social media is a fun and incredibly engaging way to stay connected and share moments from our lives with others, it should not be taken to heart and should certainly not dictate the way that people live their lives.

Image by mohamed_hassan from Pixabay