Friday, January 6, 2012

New Projects: Busy as Little Bees

What am I doing? Busy as a bee. I thought I'd just share some recent projects and tools we are using:

Preschool: We visit PBSkids Games section. Not exactly ground breaking, I know.

Kindergarten: They just started learning about patterns so we visit the National Library of Virtual Manipulatives and complete their various patterning activities.

First Grade: They're learning about money/making change/selling items so we use Jump Start First Grade, The Money Challenge and The Lemonade Stand to reinforce those skills.

Second Grade: We just finished a several week unit using Scratch programming to create animations of the bean plant life cycle. Here is an example of one. Now, we are beginning Martin Luther King Jr timelines using Timeline Maker or SumoPaint (the kids choose).

Third Grade: They just finished a Microsoft Word unit (not terribly exciting) and are now beginning keyboarding. We use Type to Learn 3 and some old school keyboarding drills as well. I even have a very old word processor I show them and give them a chance to try out!

Fourth Grade: They just finished a copyright unit that I designed and described here. Now they are starting a keyboarding unit of practice.

Fifth Grade: These students just created blogs for the book Kokopelli's Flute. Each student chose a character from the book and composed one blog post per chapter as if they were keeping a journal. They were graded on creativity (did they use a song or poem instead of just text?) and communication skill. They were also graded on their commenting skills with other kids...they had to comment on at least 10 other blogs. We used Kidblog. They're set to private at this point. So we can't share here.  Now they are using Masher to create short travel videos for South Africa. It's our very first time using this tool and I'm nervous. Our tools in this year have not always gone well (Glogster shut down mid project, MyFakewall functioned horribly, Nota had glitches). Kidblog was awesome so I'm hoping for another score.

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