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Laura Smith

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Jabber/GTalk: smithdowntowntech

Filed Under (Computer Lab Updates, News) by on July 29, 2012

This marks the conclusion of four wonderful years blogging the technology news for the Downtown School! I am transitioning to a new position teaching fifth grade reading and language arts this year, and will be starting a new blog to document integration of educational technology. I will post the new link once I get settled […]


Fourth grade classes are wrapping up an interdisciplinary unit themed on the elements air, water, fire, and earth. A small group was tasked with researching how to make a camp fire. They wrote a script and made a storyboard, then came down to the lab ready to get started on making a movie. The students […]

Filed Under (Resources) by on February 9, 2012

With an elementary school computer lab buzzing all day long, the Macs tend to accumulate big download folders and the Photo Booth folder fills up with a million goofy pictures. I decided that it’s a lot easier to make these go away with one click rather than looking through the folders of each computer. All […]


Here are some reflective questions to think about when teaching technology centered lessons: Why is this learning important? Can students explain the objective in their own words? Can students explain the product they are tasked with creating? Is there a good balance between you demonstrating and students doing? Does the task involve applying knowledge to […]

A couple years ago, I wrote a post about using digital map making tools for a variety of classroom learning activities, but I’ve found one that I particularly love. My sixth graders used it to create maps for a social studies project. It is easy for the kids to use, prints well, and has enough […]