Week Six

October11

Story of the week, Edublogs being down (well, more like up and down).

Grade One: I’m proceeding with just having them watch language arts videos for reading development and go to Starfall providing more reading and phonemic development. This is the grade level that I need to do the most development in my own practices.

Grade Two: They are doing a unit on storytelling which I’m supporting. We’re talking about story elements like characters, plot, genre, moral and author purpose. They have been mapping videos of stories we’ve watched on Discovery Streaming, next time, they will write a story of their own as a class.

Grade Three: Is one of the grades featured in my presenation at ILC. They have done some bang up work their friendship theme on a VoiceThread. It’s an exploration of the concept that started with photos from Flickr, then we added pictures of their classes showing friendship, and finally comments and questions they have about friendship. I’ll be featuring it in my presenation on English Language Development using technology.

Grade Four: Hmm, I started with expectations that were WAY too high, now, I wonder if I’m just missing something. The kids are watching videos from “When We Left Earth” series as part of a unit on Risk and Consequences (both good and bad). I may have underestimated their engagement becuase they weren’t “glued” the the video. I haven’t been able to have them blog because of problems with Edublogs this week. I feel like I’m not hitting just right with them AT ALL! Maybe I should be planning their lessons like I do Third Grade, and switch over to the upper grade model in January? I just feel like I’m hitting a lot of sour notes here. I had to use an alternative page on Jottit.com.

Grade Five: Well, I had an assignment that did not rely on Edublogs, but I still blew it. Kids were supposed to do an ad for a presidential candidate, but I forgot they would need still pics of faces to make their candidate. I’ll take this up when I return from San Jose. From the kids who persevered and did the activity, I got two thumbs up. Here is the alternative page on Jottit.com.

UPDATE: I pull the rabbit out of my hat on Friday, and uploaded staff portraits from last year for the kids to make pictures with on Ad-o-matic. Not everyone was able to complete the project (our network was super slow, the application is a hog, and 30 of us were trying to do it at the same time from the same site), but enough did. The wind was making them hyper and chatty, but they were generally on task.

Grade Six: I’m trying to “blend in” the 5/6 combo that hasn’t had any computer time, but bringing them in on my break time. The kids should be doing motivational posters, but I want to check their text, and Edublogs being down crimped that. Having seen some of what they wrote so far, many are off-track, so I want to see what they have in mind before they do the poster. Here is the alternative page on Jottit.com.

I’m trying out soemthing new that’s kind of old. I’m using an AlphaSmart Neo keyboard to see how to use these tools to expand technology in the classroom. It does limit things to text, but I would like to be more up to date on how to use these things, since we have one cart of them for each upper grade level. Many of the teachers already use them for projects and writing in their classes so it would be nice to integrate them with Google Docs and my lab.

I will be taking one along on my trip to San Jose next week. I figure it will be good for notes especially in places without great battery power (they run off of “AA”s and they last a long time).

They have infra-red for file transfers but I wish it was bluetooth because that would connect with phone, and laptop more easily.

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