Today the PreK students used 2 apps. We did the Preschool Memory Match game (currently $0.99 US) which is the best matching app I have found. Love that it uses pictures, text, and audio and helps to stretch students’ vocabulary as they play. The sound effects are realistic, and there are fun little touch widgets in between each game that students can touch and manipulate.
We also played the Toca House app (currently $2.99 US) which is a touch and explore game. I like how students just have use some problem solving skills to get the various elements to work by touching, swiping, and dragging. Good fun as the help clean the virtual house!
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The third graders recently finished their Minecraft Animal Habitats. They took screenshots of their habitats and then used the Explain Everything app to record a report where they told about their habitat. This was the students’ first time using Explain Everything, and unfortunately we ran into some issues with the audio recording with technical errors, being too soft, or having lots of background noise. Therefore I selected a few of the reports to publish as examples of the students’ work in this project.
This was a long project with many parts, but I am very proud of the great work that the students did throughout the process!
Teacher Notes – Here is an overview of the project and some of my thoughts about what I would do differently next time. Click on the link to read the post about each part of the project:
Inquiry and Research – we used Padlet to collect questions before researching an animal’s habitat.
(I loved using Padlet to collect student questions. I did find that some students struggled a bit to generate questions that directly addressed things they needed to know to build the habitat and sometimes their research did not relate to this task. Next time I would look for new ways to focus the inquiry and research process, perhaps trying to do more of the research while they are building the habitat.)
Building in Minecraft – students worked either individually or with a partner to build an animal habitat.
(The students knew much more about Minecraft than I did, and that was great! If someone got stuck, I would just shout out “Who knows how to….” and someone would jump up and help! They did a great job teaching each other, and me! Now I know how to fly and grow trees – bonemeal, who knew? Those who had done a lot of Minecraft definitely came up with the most creative solutions. A few students who had never used Minecraft struggled throughout the MInecraft part of the project – they never could quite find a good location or build a structure, but they accomplished enough that they could at least explain what they were trying to do.)
Recording a Report - using video tutorials about how to use Explain Everything.
(Having the video tutorials for Explain Everything worked great! Students watched them when they were ready for each part and could rewatch as needed. It really made the process of follwing the steps easier. However, next time I think I would simply record a video of the student showing their habitat in Minecraft and talking about it. I think it would give a better overview of the habitat and students could more thoroughly explain their design and thinking, plus it would be much faster than using Explain Everything.)
So it is the day before vacation, and the computer lab is being used for testing. A perfect excuse to have tech class using iPads in the fifth grade classrooms and have a little fun using the VidRhythm app to create music videos! Here are a few shots of the students in action. Scroll down to the bottom where I have posted a few examples of the fun videos that they created! Enjoy!
VidRhythm is currently available on iTunes for $1.99 (used to free, sorry, but offers a lot of fun for a small price!).
On Friday, the Kindergarten students made virtual snowflakes using an app called Snowflake Station. (No little snips of white paper all over the floor when you do it with an iPad!)
When we were done making and saving our snowflakes, students used the app to take a “selfie” and then made the snowflakes fall over top of their face! Lots of fun!
Snowflake Station is currently available for $0.99 US on the iTunes app store.
Looking for some free snowflake apps and other creative Christmas apps? Check out this post from last year:
Free Christmas Apps for Creativity
This week the PreK students created Christmas “ornaments” using the Mandalas Free app. They LOVED seeing the pretty designs that they could create.
The goal of this lesson was to challenge the first grade students to follow multiple directions independently to create a Christmas tree. Students watched the teacher demonstrate directions which used five different tools with five different steps. Most students were able to successfully complete all steps and make, decorate, and label a beautiful Christmas tree without assistance!
Here are 2 musical slideshows showing all the tress! Enjoy!
Fifth grade students are busy at work creating tours of their life of using Hyperstudio software. They are demonstrating great creativity and skills as they use multiple tools in unique ways.
This week the kindergarten students used iPads to take photos of colors around their room! Students worked with a partner so one person could hold the iPad while the other person took the picture. Everyone was very careful to hold the iPads with 2 hands and not run or play around when the iPad was in their hands!
We used the camera button in the Pic Collage app to take our photos. Students used their fingers to move and resize the photos. Then they went to the teacher for some help to type their color and name.
Here is a gallery of their pictures. Click on the image to view a larger version:
Pic Collage is a free app that can be used in many ways in the classroom to create digital posters!
Third graders, use these videos and the direction sheet to help you learn how to build your report about your Minecraft Habitat Reports:
How to take a screenshot:
How to start your report in the Explain Everything App
How to save your report and quit Explain Everything
Example of a Minecraft Habitat Report using Explain Everything (by Miss Bosch)
I hope you enjoy these fun Thanksgiving videos from the second graders. In this lesson, students learned how to center text and use the return key. They also used the eraser tools to correct mistakes. Finally, they sent their project to the printer without teacher help. It is great to see students increase their independence as they follow multiple steps in our projects!
Note: The videos were created using the free Animoto app.
Free full featured account for educators! http://animoto.com/education