Tag Archives: IditaRead

Idita-Type™ Grade 4


Absolutely awesome performance by both Grade 4 teams today! They listened well during the pre-race briefing, they found their official shared map in their Google My Maps account, Wheels got daily data and passed it on to Mushers, Mushers entered data in the Excel workbook and passed the info on to the Leads who measured trail miles, Swings edited daily position pins, and Team dogs placed pins with pictures and text.

Great job, students!

Iditarod Typing Race: Results of Typing Tests and Team Generation

The 5th and 6th graders have completed their typing tests in preparation for the race next week.  After running the team-generating macros, this is how the teams compare:

Screen shot 2016-03-02 at 12.02.44 AM
Grade 5: Team 1 and Team 2 data and profiles
Screen shot 2016-03-01 at 7.35.07 PM
Grade 6: Team 1 and Team 2 data and profiles

Some of the students were not able to complete fourteen timed typing tests with a minimum 95% accuracy.  This will result in a sharp decline in trail progress toward the end of the race.

After running a macro to  populate the test scores on the Data sheets, it became evident that in both grades, one of the teams would arrive in Nome before the other. However, team progress will also be determined by the efficiency and accuracy with which the teams’ official online maps are completed.

Options for Updating Team Positions Online with Google My Maps

If you have chosen to publish your IditaRead project online, you can move team icons quite easily.

First of all, you need to note the difference between viewing the map and editing the map.  If you’ve made the map public, anybody can view it.  Since you are the creator of the map, you can also edit everything about it.

Screen shot 2016-02-27 at 8.40.11 AM
Your option as the creator of the map is the EDIT link.

Click on the EDIT link to make changes.

Screen shot 2016-02-27 at 8.40.37 AM
Edit mode toolbar and menu bar.

In Edit mode, you can fully customize the appearance of your Routes, Checkpoints, and Teams.

Screen shot 2016-02-27 at 8.41.11 AM
A Team icon in edit mode.

Cllck on a team icon. You are now able to change its properties. Click on the icon again and you are able to drag it to a new position. Use the Ruler tool to measure exact positions on the trail.

You may also consider the same options for color-coding team icons as discussed in this article.

IditaRead Variation: Iditarod Typing Race

The Iditarod Typing Race uses keyboarding words-per-minute instead of time spent reading to determine trail position. It uses all of the same features of the Excel workbook and Google Earth maps as the reading version.

The team aspect of this race works outstandingly well in a computer lab setting, as it allows for head-to-head competition while utilizing the benefits of cooperative learning. Every student in the class has an important, though differentiated, role in the race. All of the students use multiple higher-order cognitive and computer skills to move their team towards the finish. The technology component allows for real-time monitoring and display of team progress.

Using Student Typing Tests for Team Setup

My technology students have been using typing.com for keyboarding skills development. We use the 1 minute typing tests for our wpm verification.

Screen shot 2016-02-26 at 10.58.50 PM
Verification of students’ typing test results.

The students do not need to print or save any files. The teacher can download a csv file from their typing.com teacher account in the Reports section. I use a minimum accuracy criteria of 95% to qualify wpm and delete every score below 95%. The students ideally will have 14 qualifying tests; one for each day of the race.

Check out the following articles for more information:

The Microsoft Excel workbook can be downloaded here.

The Google Earth KMZ file can be downloaded here.



IditaRead: Using the Excel Macros

The Microsoft Excel IditaRead workbooks have two macro buttons on the the last sheet of the workbook.

The Erase All Data macro is activated by clicking on the gas gauge.  It will enable you to erase all the data entered in order to start a new race.  I did NOT include the Save command in the macro to prevent unintentional file replacements.

Screen shot 2016-02-26 at 1.31.03 PM
The macro buttons on the Restart sheet.

The Random Number macro is activated by clicking on the square of numbers.  It will generate random integers from 0-60 and place them in all of the teams and all of the members for all 14 days. You can test the functionality of the workbook and the results of the rate parameters you chose.

IditaRead: Using the RANDBETWEEN function in MS Excel to practice plotting team positions

Check out the functionality of the MS Excel IditaRead workbooks by using the RANDBETWEEN function on the Data sheet.

RANDBETWEEN allows you to set minimum and maximum integers, so you can see how team positions might play out by generating random numbers.

For example, if your target reading time per day is 45 minutes, consider students reading between 0 and 60 minutes per day.  Your formula would then be =RANDBETWEEN(0,60)

Screen shot 2016-02-25 at 9.24.40 AM

Put this formula in the Day 1 cell on the Data sheet and Fill Down for all your readers.  Check the Trail Position sheet for exact locations of each team and pin them on your Google map.

Screen shot 2016-02-26 at 6.34.51 PM
Exact positioning of team positions on the trail.

Screen shot 2016-02-25 at 9.21.24 AM