Teacher Feature: Tina La Rosa’s Smore project (EMSB, Galileo)

April 30, 2013

Featured teacher: Tina La Rosa (CCBE, English Literacy)

Centre and School Board: Galileo Adult Centre (EMSB) in conjunction with the RECIT FGA Regional Service.

What was the project? Tina’s literacy students (Accessing Services B124-4) used an on-line tool named Smore to create on-line posters to help develop writing and speaking competencies.

What did the students do? The goal of the Accessing Services course is to help adult literacy learners use oral and written discourse to deal competently with real-life situations related to obtaining access to public services. As so, the focus of the Smore project was to create an on-line poster to promote the benefits of the Access Montreal Card and what services can be accessed with it. Please watch the following two minute video that will give you a better idea of what Tina did with her students. Awesome work Tina!


What is Smore? Smore is web 2.0 tool that can be used on any Mac or PC. If you’d like to know more about Smore, it was featured on my blog in January 2013.

Teacher Feature: Ali Ghassemi’s Top 11 iPad Math Apps (NFSB, Nova)

February 5, 2013

Ali Ghassemi teaches Sec. 1-5 Math at Nova Career Education Centre, which is part of the New Frontiers School Board in Châteauguay, Quebec. This school year, Ali’s centre acquired a set iPads. As soon as Ali got his hands on an iPad, he began to pour over hundreds of different math apps in an attempt to find new approaches to help his students succeed in greater numbers.

Ali recently presented alongside Tracy Rosen (Resource Teacher at NFSB) at the QPAT 2012 teacher’s conference and demonstrated 11 of his favorite Math apps. If you’d like to learn more about their session about increasing student engagement with iPads, I’d highly encourage you take a look at Tracy’s detailed blog post from her education focused blog, Leading from the Heart. Without any further ado, here are Ali’s top 11 apps sorted by category:

Educreation: Record math lessons on screen. View hundreds of various lessons from other teachers.

Converter: Easily convert units from one to another.

Algebra Touch: Rearrange, slide, and tap variables to solve equations.
Tritutor: Shows how to solve quadratic equations, step-by-step.
Ace High School Math: Step-by-step math videos (needs internet connection)
Polynomials by HUP: Helps students work with polynomials through video.
Math Quadsolve: Solves quadratic equations.

Mathgraph: A graphing application for the iPad.
Winipossible Geometry Tutor: Videos to help students with geometry.
Unit Circle Helps students understand triangles and how they relate to trigonometry.

General Math:
Math Aptitude: 1500 Math questions with step-by-step solutions.

(Source: Tracy Rosen, resource teacher at Nova Career Centre. Be sure to check out Tracy’s blog at http://leadingfromtheheart.org. Also thanks to Ali Ghassemi, math teacher at Nova Career Centre.)

Teacher Feature: Hilda Smolash (EMSB, Marymount)

February 14, 2012

Teacher: Hilda Smolash (CCBE, English Literacy)

School Board and Centre: English Montreal School Board, Marymount Adult Centre, in Montreal, Quebec in conjunction with the RECIT FGA Regional Service.

What is the project? Hilda’s video project aimed to help literacy level (ESL) students improve their communication and writing competencies through the production of short video skits, based on real-life situations.

How did it work? In the first class, Hilda’s students were placed into groups and each group was asked to recreate a real-life situation in which they wanted to improve their spoken English. The situation had to include an exit strategy (an ending). Hilda reported that the initial part of the activity sparked lots of animated discussion as the groups had to reach a consensus. The following class, each group practiced their skits, but without written lines – they had to improvise the words just as they would need to do outside of the classroom. Next, they filmed their skits. With some assistance from Hilda, students were then asked to summarize the main parts of their skits by writing short captions in the third person narrative. In the last class, the students acted as “directors” and worked with Avi to incorporate their written captions into their video skits. Avi took care of the video editing so the students could continue to focus strictly on language learning, not on the video making process.

Are you interested? If you’re an FGA teacher who would like to develop a similar activity in your English or FSL class, please let us know. We can provide pedagogical support and technical guidance, along with equipment.

Video: To see an in-class video (2 minutes) demonstrating Hilda’s project, click the play button below.. Also don’t forget to check out the official press release!

Teacher Feature: Ann Fairhurst-Lozyk (EMSB, James Lyng)

May 26, 2011

Teacher: Ann Fairhurst-Lozyk (Basic Education)

School Board and Centre: English Montreal School Board, James Lyng Adult Education Centre in Montreal, Quebec.

What is the material? Ann’s project instructs teachers how to illustrate a dialogue between two students using a variety of readily available ICT tools. The project prepares the students for a visit to the doctor’s office by using the Internet to help them learn how to research the necessary medical vocabulary, how to clearly describe symptoms, and how to construct appropriate questions to ask the doctor.

How will it help students? The final product of the project is a doctor/patient PowerPoint role play. The use of ICT is a great motivator (while helping students develop speaking competencies) and makes a star out of even the most reluctant students.

Download: Please click this link (27MB) if you’d like to download a copy of Ann’s PowerPoint project. If you’d like to contact Ann for more information, please let us know and we’ll put you in touch.

Video Tutorial: For a how-to video on how to setup an activity seen in Ann’s project, please click the play button below:

Teacher Feature: Marie-Christine Kovacs (ETSB, New Horizons)

May 6, 2010

Starting this month, I am starting a “teacher feature” to spotlight individual FGA teachers who have created exemplary ICT materials that they’ve used successfully in their own classrooms. With the teacher’s permission, these ICT materials will be shared on the blog and made available for my readers to download.

Teacher: Marie-Christine Kovacs (Level 4 French)

School Board and Centre: Eastern Townships School Board, New Horizons Adult Education Centre in Sherbrooke, Quebec.

What is the material? Marie-Christine created a SMART Notebook presentation for her level 4 French class. Her presentation was a review of one of the chapters she worked on with her students in her class. The main subjects were: The subjonctive, movement prepositions, the interrogative pronoun “Quel”, directions, questions, pronoun “en vs y” and a review of vocabulary seen in the chapter they were working on.

How did it help her students? Marie-Christine explained to me that because the presentation was so visual and hands-on, it helped her students more easily grasp the concepts they were reviewing. Marie-Christine also found that her students were more interested, focused, and enjoyed learning in a fun and different way. They were also more successful with the test that followed the presentation!

Download: Click below to download a copy of Marie-Christine’s SMART Notebook presentation “revision.notebook” from the ICT Blog. Believe it or not, this is Marie-Christine’s first SMARTBoard presentation! If you’d like to contact her, please let me know and I’ll put you in touch.

Click on image below to download a copy of Marie’s presentation:

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