Mrs. Mulvaney’s class participated in a STEM activity for Virginia Studies! Check it out below:
Students at Clearbrook in Mrs. Schlosser’s class participated in a STEM project to learn more about the Regions of Virginia. Students were divided into groups and given boxes and various art supplies (paper, Q-tips, playdough, puff balls, yard, beads, and a few other supplies). Using the materials they had and research materials (textbooks and various websites), their task was to create a Mystery box full of clues about the region of Virginia their group was assigned.
They needed to have at least 14 clues, including clues about products, industries, land forms, water features, animals, renewable and non-renewable resources. At least four of the items had to be 3-dimensional, and one clue could be a written word.
At the very end, students created a QR code to place on their box with the answer to the “Mystery Region.” Other students can now use the clues in the box to guess what region the box represents, and then check their answer by scanning the QR code. They also wrote each day in their journals to describe what they had learned during their work that day.
Not only did students learn about the Regions of Virginia with this project, they used the 21st Century Skills of Collaboration, Communication, Creativity, and Problem Solving.
I can’t take credit for writing this activity. It was written by a group of us during a STEM committee meeting. Here are the handouts if you want a look!
Students in Mrs. Atkin’s and Mrs. Glowenski’s classes created Needs and Wants Posters using Pic Collage on the iPads. They used the camera feature to take pictures of items around their classroom. Many students found creative ways to represent concepts, especially wants. I love that most any age can use Pic Collage. It is definitely one of my favorite apps. Check out a few examples of the First Graders’ work below:
Have you checked out the courses lately in iTunes University? The teachers at Boyne City Schools have been busy. They have created a wide variety of iTunes U Courses on subjects that are suitable for elementary schools. If you haven’t taken a look, make sure you do! These courses contain activities using video, audio, ibooks, and apps. They also include project based activities. You do need an iPad or iPod Touch to really use these courses. Here are a few of my favorite:
And I love their course for teachers and principals on Flipping Professional Development!
Take a look at the news article about students using these courses in class. But don’t worry, you don’t need your students to have their very own iPads (thought it would be SO nice if they did). These lessons would still work great with the carts we have.
Boyne City is in Michigan, so they are using Common Core Standards. That means that some of these units might work for other grade levels in Virginia than indicated.
If you are a teacher at one of my schools and would like to use any part of these courses with your students, let me know. I’ll make sure the course is loaded on the iPads at your school!
Have you heard of Flocabulary? It’s a website that does hip hop songs to help students remember certain facts. It started with SAT vocab, but has expanded to all levels and subjects. To have access to all the videos/songs you need to pay a fee, but a few are free…including the one for Egypt, which you can watch here.
Note the lyrics below the song (they are clickable) and the resources to go with it on the right hand side of the page. I will warn you…you will be singing the chorus to this in your head all day after you hear it, or at least I did! :)
There are other free videos too worth checking out on the site, including Confessions of a Planet (Space), On Trial! (Test Taking Vocabulary), Let Freedom Ring (Civil Rights), This Ain’t Working (American Revolution), Place Value, Scientific Method of Madness, and more! There is a vocabulary section broken down by grade level and tons of other great videos in the paid version. You can also download songs in iTunes (for $.99 each). Take a look (and listen). I think you will love these!
Mrs. McGee’s class has been working hard on Glog using Glogster EDU to demonstrate their understanding of the famous people they have studied. After a quick tutorial on how to use the programs, Mrs. McGee and her students were off and running. Here are a few examples of their hard work. Click on the top right corner icon to see them full size.
You can see all the class’ glogs on this wiki: McGee’s Class
This past week, fourth graders at in Mrs. Mulvaney’s, Mrs. Downey’s, and Mrs. Wallace’s reading class have been learning about Rosa Parks while reading the book, Rosa Parks Freedom Rider by Keith Brandt and Joanne Mattern.
To augment what they were learning in the book, they also practiced research skills to learn more about her. They used Mobicip, Popplet, and Videolicious to create videos about the facts they learned.
The project started with Mobicip. Because Safari is not filtered very much in our school system, we have opted to use Mobicip instead. Mobicip looks a lot like Safari (with tabs and a search box) and allows students to save images in the same way. Students practiced finding relevant websites to find facts about Rosa Parks and saved copyright friendly pictures of her to the iPad Camera roll.
Once students had saved pictures and done their research, they used Popplet to create a concept map. This concept map wouldserve as a storyboard for their Videolicious videos.
Finally, students partnered up. One student opened up the popplet they had created on one iPad and the other student opened up Videolicious on the other ipad. The students choose the pictures they wanted for their video. Then, the second student videoed the first student while he or she used their popplet as a guide.
It was great fun and the students learned a lot…and it was very easy. It was nice to be able to research, brainstorm, and create all on the iPad right in the classroom.
This project also made it easy to see where there were gabs in the knowledge of students, which teachers then could address.
Take a look at a few of their final projects!
A few weeks ago, a teacher came to me wanting to do a Jamestown Geocaching Activity with her students. I had been doing a lot of work on iPads, and had enjoyed some of the quick, 1 minutes video podcasts by History is Fun.org. I decided to incorporate both the iPads and Geocaching into one activity. Here’s the activity I created:
1. Download Podcasts videos to at least 6 iPod Touches/iPads from iTunes. You can find them here: Historyisfun.org Podcasts. You’ll need the following videos:
2. Hide 6 Caches with the following labels on each cache: Jamestown Cache Labels. Mark the locations of the caches with the GPS Units.
3. Students were broken up into groups, and given a clipboard, a Jamestown Geocaching Answer Sheet, an Order Strip for 6 Caches, and an iPad with the videos (but iPod Touch would work too), a pencil, and a GPS Unit.
4. Students worked in groups to find and answer the questions using the videos. I suggest the following jobs for members the group:
5. When students were finished, they used the app, Scan, and the following Jamestown Geocaching QR Codes to check their work. A traditional Answer Key is located here if you do not have time for this part of the activity. Students re-watch the videos for the questions they’ve missed.
So far I’ve had two classes complete this activity, and they loved it! I liked using the iPads because they were big enough for the entire group to see. I found it really important to discuss reading the questions BEFORE watching the videos…and practicing with the Slavery video was very helpful.
Image: Kolk, Melinda. compassrose.jpg. 1-Apr. Pics4Learning. 9 Nov 2012 <http://pics.tech4learning.com>
Want to be President? Well, you can at least make your own commercial! Try it out here:
You can definitely grab your students attention, or have them make their own as the beginning to a writing prompt. During the process students will need to upload their pictures, choose their political party, and choose the items in their platform. Very fun!