Friday, October 31, 2014

Personal Dictionaries with Book Creator

Thought I'd share this simple, yet effective strategy for students to create a personal dictionary that can be added to as needed. I have been using this with Grade 2 and the students were so excited to make these dictionaries so I thought that it was an idea worth sharing.

This idea came about to address a need for EAL students. They had been keeping a list of words on paper but being able to use a voice recording added a whole new layer to this task that can assist these students in learning new words. The class teacher explained to me that typing the word can be challenging so it was decided to photograph the word as found (in a book, on a display ... etc) and then add a voice recording speaking the word. All I needed was a simple way for this to happen.

I was able to use two apps here. I first made the dictionary template in Book Creator. This is an app that is on all the student iPads. It is easy to use.

Next I shared that file only with the students who needed it. I did this with Showbie. Showbie allows teachers and students to send each other files from iPad to iPad over the wifi. I have explained the process in the following info-graphic. Take a look.

If you would like the Book Creator file, I have placed it here on Dragon Tales.

Jane Ross PIE @janeinjava

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

PIE G5 Art: Animating Art

Visual Arts teacher Ms. Genevieve Mathieu is currently exploring the elements of art with her grade five students.  Ms. Mathieu sees animation as a creative and fun way for students to learn about art. To begin the animation activity students are divided into small groups that are assigned a specific element to investigate, such as, line, color, texture, shape,form, value and space.   Each group collaborates to create an animation that communicates their understanding of the element that they have explored.  
As I observed Genevieve’s class the “fun” aspect of the learning was very apparent.  In addition, the animation activity promoted storytelling, critical thinking, problem solving as well as media literacy awareness.
From a resource perspective, the PIE Library small set of Android tablets - also used to access the Library Catalogue - have added options for a grade level where the primary tool is a laptop. The combination of the tablet device, custom-designed document stand, and the age appropriate StopMotion App made implementation of the project relatively easy, and the clear learning goals kept the project on track.  
We’ll be sure to post a link to student projects and reflections as soon as they become available.
Russell Downs (ES TIS) @russdowns
Mathieu, Genevieve. Personal Interview. 13 Oct. 2014

Sunday, October 12, 2014

What happens when every student has an iPad for class?

The JIS Elementary Schools have gone 1:1 iPads in Grade 2-4, and that means their classrooms are immersed in the opportunities and challenges that come with such a major change.  The learning curve is not flat, and through the change process, teachers are modeling what contemporary learning and the 4 Rs are all about.

From Speed Geeking Wednesday Sessions at PIE to a Saturday Session at CIL to informal App problem-solving sessions at PEL to inspiration from the iPad conference at ISKL,  ES teachers are collaborating and considering the best way to keep JIS iPad use connected to meaningful learning goals.

Specifically, some learning goals being explored (and related tools) include:

- Making learning visible and documenting learning (Explain Everything, Book Creator, Tiny Tap)
- Metacognition and the creative process (iMovie, Photo)
- Developing multimedia literacy and design skills, ie Book Trailers (iMovie, Book Creator, Pic Collage)
- Collaborative research (searching for Google Presentation alternative)
- Math literacy (EDM games, Tiny Tap)
- Giving feedback (Google Classroom, Showbie)

Our school is lucky to have amazing resources - technology of course, but especially the love of learning our teachers and the technology/library team share with our community every day.  

Check out snapshots (Animoto) from the Saturday Session below.  Thanks, Rod, for putting this together.