The first graders recently used KidPix as a way to review a number of skills they had been learning. They had to follow these multiple steps to complete their Christmas trees:
- Draw with straight and freeform lines, shapes, and textures
- Use the paint bucket to fill a shape
- Switch between tools independently
- Add stamps
- Add, resize, and move stickers
- Create and type in a text box
I put together a video in Animoto showing their Christmas trees. (Note: if you don’t see your child’s picture, they may have been absent when we did this project.)
May you have a most blessed Christmas season celebrating the birth of Jesus!
Last Thursday the PreK students used the Explore Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood app in class. This was the first time we have used this app, but as soon as I opened the app and they heard the music one little boy shouted out, “PBS!” After quick instructions on how to use the arrows to navigate the app and making some predictions about what they might find inside each location, the students started to explore by tapping and moving characters with their fingers.
The app is very intutitive and the students had no problems discovering and playing all the interactives and games and helping each other to locate all the “cool” features. They all knew the characters from the show and liked that they could decide which ones to play with. They especially enjoyed interacting in the park and the store. This kind of app is perfect for PreK because students can use their imagination and make up stories in their mind as they move about the scenes. While they played, we had great discussions about the characters and what they were doing.
Explore Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is currently $2.99 on the U.S. iTunes store.
This week in technology class, the kindergarten students enjoyed reading a collection of Thanksgiving/Fall eBooks that I put together on the Epic app. Students were able to choose the books that they wanted to read. Many of the eBooks included audio narration which worked perfectly for emerging readers. Students listened while following the text on the page.
Epic has a vast collection of fiction and nonfiction books for kids appropriate for ages PreK through 6th grade. It contains audio books, picture books, chapter books, and even videos. Some books include quizzes at the end. There is something for every student interest level and students can immediately read the books – no trip to the library required!
Epic allows teachers to create an account for use within their classroom for unlimited books for FREE! I like that I can create collections for students on a topic or for a certain reading level. You can even set up collections for individual students which is a great way to meet specific learning needs. Students can also search for their own books based on their interests.
Parents can get a monthly subscription to Epic. You get a free 30 day trial, and then the current price is $5.99 (a 25% discount), which is much less than the cost of one eBook purchase. SCS parents, if you use this code to connect to our account, we will receive points that we can use towards rewards for our classroom. You can read the books on an iPad, Android, or computer.
SCS Epic Code: DYR-4572
This week the second graders used the Write About This app to write a story about things that they are thankful for. They learned some new tricks about typing on an iPad (which are different typing on the computer keyboard). They also had an opportunity to record themselves reading their story within the app. It was great to see how the students thanked God for their blessings.
Write About This is a wonderful app to encourage student writing and fluency. It has a large collection of pictures with writing prompts to inspire writing (or you can add your own pictures). We love that you can easily record the student reading the story right within the app and then save the finished story/audio to the photo album. It currently is available on the US iTunes store for $2.99.
Last Friday the kindergarten students had fun using the Faces I Make app to build silly faces out of food stickers. In this lesson, the students had to use those fine motor skills to pinch to resize and rotate the pieces to fit on their face. They also learned how to delete pieces and start/save projects.
Here is a video that I put together showing the students’ crazy faces. (Note: if you don’t see your child, they may have been absent or there may have been an error in saving the finished picture.)
Faces I Make is currently available on the US iTunes Bookstore for $2.99. It has a large variety of object “stickers” that can be combined in creative ways to make all kinds of pictures, not just faces!
The second graders have been using KidPix to learn about ways to use computers to edit and erase mistakes. Recently, they made “sentence stretcher” stories. They learned/reviewed how to resize, center, and edit text in a text box. They also were able to use eraser tools to help them as they illustrated their stories. This lesson also supports the second grade Common Core standard:
Produce, expand, and rearrange complete simple and compound sentences.
The second graders did a great job working on these stories. Click on each image to see it in larger size.
Here is an example of what a Book Snap looks like. You are going to be using the Pic Collage app and the video tutorials below to make your project.
The funny leaf people are back! In this KidPix lesson, the first graders learned to double click to open a file. They created and typed their name in a text box. Finally, they followed 4 steps to decorate their leaf person using stamps, flipped stamps, lines, and paint brush tools! Here is a video sharing all of their leaf people! Enjoy!
Recently, the third grade students have started to use the Type to Learn keyboarding program to work on developing their typing skills. This program includes guided lessons, assessments, and games. Students can work through the lessons at their own pace and their progress is tracked by the program.
If your student is doing any typing at home, please encourage him/her to use the home row and to type with all of their fingers. Thanks!
Over the past few weeks, the second students have been learning to use styluses to draw on iPads. We used the Drawing Pad app. Students explored the different drawing tools, while learning to adjust the size of lines and pinching in to add details to their drawings. They made pictures of fall vocabulary words.
The following week students worked on creating sketchnotes over a nonfiction story from their reading book about exploring space.
In these sketchnotes, the students used words and pictures to visualize the important things you need to explore space based on what they had read. Here are a few examples of their sketchnotes: