Tech Talk

Help for Students to Improve "Technology" Skills

There are four technology/computer skills that will help students succeed in school and on assessments.  They often are not mentioned as part of any curriculum, but they can be real barriers in the classroom if students do not have these skills.

     1. Mouse Skills

    2. Website Navigation

  • Word Machine - practice vowel sounds while navigating (K-2)
  • Number Chart Game - practice numbers and navigation (1-4)
  • Comic Strip - learn to navigate a webpage by reading instructions, clicking items, dragging items, viewing videos, and entering text into fields. (3-5)

    3. Drag and Drop

  • 2D & 3D Shapes - learn math skills while practicing to drag and drop (K-2)
  • Spelling Practice - practice spelling by dragging and dropping letters (1-4)
  • Clean-up Your Grammar - practice following instructions by dragging and dropping items thus reinforcing the skills of dragging and dropping within a field. (3-5)

    4. Keyboarding

Summary of Tech Talk - November 19, 2014

  • We talked about our overall vision for technology at VHES.
  • We shared about our current available technology hardware and how it is being used at school.
  • We talked about our VHES website in great detail. We went over the various sections of the website and pointed out to the parents such parts as: Digital Citizenship Page, Parent Page, Common Core Page, and much more. 
  • We discussed our mission to address needs for students, teachers, and parents. 
  • We announced our next Tech Talk will take place in December. (more information to follow)
  • We shared a few videos which can be found under the Resources tab of our website, see "Tech Talk".
  • Discussed how reading blogs can help parents to keep abreast of advances and trends in educational technology.
  • Shared educational technology collections that can be accessed from the VHES homepage. You will find collections specifically created for students, parents, and teachers. 
  • Parents were reminded to sign up for VHES texting system for parents. (details found under Resources tab)

Summary of Tech Talk - December 10, 2014

  • Quick review of Previous Tech Talk
  • Discussion of common issues parents face with making decisions about family use of technology
  • Summary of Tech Talk page resources
  • Discussion of online math resources
  • Discussion of online language arts resources
  • Discussion of online games 
  • Discussion of apps
  • Discussion of subscription sites
  • Question and comments

Summary of Tech Talk - February 3, 2015

  • Review of past Tech Talks
  • New tech support for students on VHES homepage
  • New "Study" resources found on VHES homepage
  • Read Aloud to Your Child - see tab under "resources" on VHES website
  • Parent Concerns - screen time, games, how does technology affect children
  • ScootPad - VHES subscription website
  • What Next?

Apps - Language Arts

Apps - Social Studies


  • Invention at Play - explore the playful side of invention
  • Wonderopolis - Wonderopolis focuses on subjects of which children are curious. This immediately engages the child and encourages them to learn more.
  • Math Pickle - creative math challenges

Educational Games

  • is the leader in free educational kids computer games and activities for elementary students to learn on the web. 
  • FunBrain - Games cover all interest areas and target specific age levels. There are “parent-kid challenges,” “homework relief,” and “books on the run” links. 
  • HoodaMath - search by grade level and topic
  • Math Playground - games sorted by topic
  • Mr. Nussbaum - lots of great games as well as other helpful information
  • Sheppard Software - games sorted by subject
  • MathNook - games sorted by common core standard
  • Sumdog - free games that make learning fun
  • Arcademic Skill Builders - arcade like math games
  • Calculation Nation - challenge players around the world
  • Game Classroom - games, videos, interactives!
  • TurtleDiary - fun and interactive games, well sorted
  • Math Play - organized by grade level and topic

Helpful Websites

  • KidSites - clean and easy to use lists of great sites
  • PBSParents -This site contains guides on a variety of topics such as child development, curriculum connections, and technology for kids. It also shares information on hot issues in education. On the lighter side, there are games, stories, and guides to the TV programs offered by PBS.
  • Child and Family Web GuideThe WebGuide is a directory that evaluates, describes and provides links to hundreds of sites containing child development research and practical advice. Topics are selected on the basis of parent recommendations; they cover all ages, from early child development through adolescence.
  • Make Meal Family Time - Encourages parents to gather the family around for this all important family time. 
  • Internet4Classrooms - Help offered by grade level and topic.
  • e-learning for kids - Fun and free learning for ages 5-12.
  • Looking for more help with discipline?
  • I have a question about helping my child with math?
  • What exactly is ADD?
  • I think my child might be gifted, what can I do as a parent to help?

Answers to these questions and more can be found on our Parenting Page

Homework Help

Language Arts

  • Learn Zillion - exceptional videos created by teachers specifically for each standard, Getting Started Video, Introduction
  • Internet4Classrooms - practice by Common Core standard
  • Reading RocketsReading Rockets is a national multimedia literacy initiative offering information and resources on how young kids learn to read, why so many struggle, and how caring adults can help.
  • Kids Reads -This website shares reviews of “cool new books” and authors. The books are categorized by age and by genre. There is a link for podcasts and another for book clubs. The newsletter highlights the newest and best on the site.
  • R.I.F. - Reading is Fundaments is the largest children's literacy nonprofit in the U.S.. They prepare and motivate children to read. We inspire children to be lifelong readers through the power of choice. 
  • Starfall - A free public service to help children learn to read. 
  • - custom practice for your child's spelling list, Getting Started Video
  • Read Aloud - our own page devoted to this most important topic
  • Road to Grammar - specific practice for what ails you
  • Teach Your Monster to Read - series of games that help children master the first stages of reading
  • Oxford Owl - ebooks and other resources to help your child learn to read
  • NoRedInk - improve grammar and writing skills, Introduction Video
  • Reading Rewards -  set up a reward program to encourage your child's reading
  • ReadWriteThink - helps parent to supplement what is taught in school



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