Ms. Onishi’s Technological Advancements

I would say that I am at the average skill level when it comes to technology. I can figure out where the nearest gas station is on Google and I can type an essay using Microsoft Word. This semester has opened my eyes to a whole world of technological tools that I did not know existed and assist me so much in creating fun and effective lessons. The WordPress posts I have featured below are just a few posts that I am the most proud of, found the most useful, and will definitely be taking with me into my future teaching journey.

Book Creator

Books are a huge part in any classroom, discovering this online tool where not only I, but my future students as well, can write and publish our own stories. I am very proud of this lesson because I was able to take a concrete topic (in this case, the planets), and give it life to teach it in a far more fun and engaging way rather than the typical lecture and test. This lesson displays the way I would like to take content and turn it on its head to better interest my future students.


I had previous Jamboard experience from classes here at the University of Portland, but this lesson contains the first one I have ever made myself. Taking a blank slate and turning it into a learning tool is probably one of the most intimidating things ever, yet I was able to do it. I loved how this Jamboard turned out as I was able to use it as both a testing tool, as well as an answer key. This lesson allows students to do some independent work and self-correct if they need to.

Google Maps

The technology we learned about this semester was very good for creating lessons for students, but I wanted to figure out how to use some of them to build community in and out of the class. I was glad to be able to create this hypothetical scenario of bringing students on a field trip and sharing this map with parents so that they are informed of everything that is going on and when. Technology can be a huge help in building community, especially in this day and age where everyone is so busy with their crazy schedules and a quick email with information is all that we can do.

Video (YouTube)

This lesson was a bit more simple, I recorded myself reading a book. Yup, that’s it! I included this lesson because I think it is so important to understand that using technology does not have to be complicated and flashy, and that tools can be simple and still have the same effect on student learning. A simple video like this can save teachers the time and effort during class, other teachers at different schools or even different states, but can also be available to parents and families after class, all over the world.

Acrostic Poetry

Student group: 2nd grade – writing

Goal: Students will use multiple pieces of technology to enhance their writing, specifically in acrostic poetry.


  1. As a warm up for the lesson, students will be instructed to go to the class Jamboard and add an adjective (or a few).
  2. After warm-up, students will write their own acrostic poems (on paper) with a topic of their choice (can be a place, animal, person, etc. as long as it has been run by the teacher first to ensure it is school appropriate)
  3. When students are done, they will be added to a collaborative book on Book Creator, where they will look for the page with their name on it. Students will copy their acrostic poems down on their designated page and can decorate/add pictures as they would like (This book will be shared with parents/guardians if they would like to read their students work).


The student-made Jamboard will help students to warm up their writing ideas and acts as a piece of assistance for students to refer to when they are feeling stuck and need help thinking of ideas. This Jamboard will be available to parents if their child would like to continue to write poetry (or any piece of writing) at home. The Book Creator classroom book acts as a place for the entire classroom to put their poetry and can make students feel proud of their writing as it feels very official to have writing in an actual book. The book also allows parents to read their students poetry at home, understand what their child does in class, and be a part of the classroom community.


Book Creator:

Field Trip to the Zoo!

Grade: Any elementary school grade – Science

Goal: Students will go on a field trip to the zoo, this map will be shared with parents/guardians who would like to know what will be happening and at what times. This map will help assist parents to know when they should be at school to drop off/pick up their kids, as well as in the event that they need to pick students up early from the field trip location.

Illustrations and Context Clues

Student Group: 1st-2nd grade English

Activity: Practice using illustrations and context clues to figure out the meaning of new words/ideas.


1. Teacher will play this video to the whole class

2. Teacher will pause when the video says, or when any word/phrase that student’s do not recognize is read

3. When video is paused, the teacher will explain how students can figure out the meaning based on the pictures and context clues, or ask students to demonstrate understanding

4. May use glossary at the end of the video to double check and go over definitions

Ex. Figuring out that the word “pipipi” is a type of a snail based on the picture, and that the sentence also said “tiny snails” in it.

Experiencing the seasons

Self-graded quiz: How well do you know your seasons?

Branching form: The perfect day!

Google forms is a super easy way to collect quick data all at once on where the students in your classroom are at in terms of content. I would love to use forms to conduct mini quizzes or surveys for formative assessments. I would also like to use it to address parental questions and concerns/collect contact information. I would like to create a form and provide parents with the link so they are able to submit any concerns they have, allowing me to keep track of them and keep them all in one place. This can also be done for student concerns if they feel the need.

Let’s Make Planet Posters!

Authors: Lannie Hisashima, Mykaela Onishi, Elizabeth Lyons-Best

Subject/Grade: Science/4th grade

Instructional Goal: Students will learn about planets in our solar system. They will be able to research an assigned planet and synthesize the information into a poster. They will be able to use the app Space by Tinybop on their iPads to research. They will be able to use Google Drawings on their computers to make a creative poster that includes text and images. 

Lesson outline:

“Alright my fourth-grade scientists, as you know for the past few days we have been learning about our solar system and the planets. Remember our planets include: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune! Now, since we have become more familiar with these planets, you all are going to be split into groups to learn more about planets. I will be assigning a specific planet to each group. Then, you and your group will create a Google Drawings poster to present to the class. Each group will be responsible for creating a poster that includes images of your planet as well as at least five interesting facts that you find about your assigned planet! 

You will be working with your group to research your assigned planet. On your iPads, you will find a new app called “Space by TinyBop.” In this app, you will be able to explore your planet and find many facts about the planet that you can include in your poster.” (The teacher can project the app onto the board to give the students a virtual tour to familiarize them with the app. The teacher can also go over an example of what their poster should look like in Google Drawings.) “Now, you will be splitting off into your groups to research and create your poster!” 

  • Teacher will then assign students into groups and let the students know what planet their group will be working on.
  • Students will have group work time to collect information from the app and create a poster regarding their planet. The teacher will roam the room to answer any questions and monitor student work time.


  • This research and poster creation may take longer than one class period. Similarly, students will be able to present their poster to the rest of the class during their next science class.
  • If the students do not have access to iPads/Chromebooks, they can conduct research through books within the classroom, handouts from the teacher, and other sources.

Student Tech Resources/Tools:

  • iPads
  • Chromebook
  • Space by Tinybop app
  • Google Drawings
  • Other research material as needed (books, websites, etc.)

How tech resources/tools help students reach their instructional goals: These tech resources help students research and learn about their assigned planet, and organize their research in a comprehensive and visually appealing way.

Sample of a student poster:

Photo Credit: Photo by Guillermo Ferla on Unsplash

I am from those who built me

I am from Oahu, Hawai'i
from mauka and makai
poke and Okinawan soba 
sandy feet and salty hair 

but more importantly 

I am from mothers and fathers,
little sisters and even littler brothers 
I am from best friends - old and new  

I am from photo albums 
preserving people I used to be and 
people I long to see 
I am from those who built me
and those who keep me standing am from those who built me

I was originally going to use Sway, as I wanted to try the different features out, however, the website was consistently shutting down whenever I tried to use it, so I decided to use Adobe instead. I am glad that I chose to switch to Adobe because I really like the way it looks and I don’t think it would have looked as nice on Sway. Sway seems to have more design options, but Adobe is a lot easier to use.

Perimeter Practice

Photo by Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash

Context: Post-test (check for understanding) Grade: 4th grade math Goal: Use google drawings to gauge where students are in understanding the concept of perimeter and how to find it.

Hello 4th graders! Today we learned how to find the perimeter of a shape (the total sum of all the sides of a shape). Before we move on, we are going to have a mini practice quiz, don’t worry, this will not be graded, I just want to make sure that everyone understands before we move on.

With this link, you may use the text box that says “perimeter,” to write down what you think is the correct answer.

You got this everyone!

Tick-Tock Goes the Clock!

Picture by OpenClipart-Vectors on Pixabay

Context: Timeline

Grade: 2nd Grade

Instructions: Hello 2nd graders! Today, we will continue practicing how to tell time with Jamboard. First, you will be matching each clock to its written time. After you do that, use the timeline to organize the times into the correct order (earliest time to latest time). When you are done, you can take look at the second slide of the Jamboard to double check your answers. No peeking!

Goal: Students will display understanding of how to read a clock, what a clocks time looks like in a written/digital form, and in what order the times are displayed (earliest to latest). The Jamboard will allow students to easily move the clocks and times around the timeline/screen so they may arrange them in whatever way makes the most sense to them.

Link to Jamboard

Great job today 2nd graders!!

Pros and Cons of Technology

It is not an exaggeration to say that technology runs the world. It is no surprise that basic necessities such as groceries can now be delivered straight to your door with the press of a button. Personally, I have mixed feelings about it all. There are moments where I want to experience a world without Instagram and online shopping, yet the next, I am so glad I don’t have to wait a week for a pigeon to deliver my message. In this post, I want to talk about and reflect on the ways technology both positively and negatively impacts my life.

Photo by Surface on Unsplash


I am positive I am not alone in saying that social media and other mobile apps consume a large area of my life. I will get into bed at 11:00 pm, and not actually put my phone down until an hour later.

It is incredible how fast the time passes when I start scrolling on TikTok and watching YouTube videos (My most recent obsession being the reality house series…highly recommend). I must admit, I am pretty ashamed when my screen time report comes back every week and visually shows me how much time I wasted on my phone.

Aside from keeping me up all night, my doctor reminds me every single year how unhealthy it is and every single year I tell myself I’ll start changing my habits…Still working on that resolution.


To put it bluntly, technology is addicting. However, I believe that there are more positive than negative aspects to it.

Firstly, music is a huge part of my life and I can confidently say that I listen to music every single day and I have a playlist for every mood (even when I start getting homesick). It is nice to have the world’s music in one place with all the different streaming apps.

Second of all, without the internet and the collaboration it allows between people all over the world, I would 100% run out of recipes to try when I get bored of the same old. Cooking and baking is something I love to do, but I can only ask my mom to pass down so many meals – the internet is so vast and is full of countless dinner and dessert ideas.

Lastly, technology makes it so much easier to connect with those I love. My family are the most important people in my life and going to college away from home would have been so much harder if I could not contact them at any given time. Like I said, waiting for a pigeon carrier is not ideal.

Technology has its faults, but the good definitely outweighs the bad and I am glad to be coming up in the golden age of tech.