We are still working on our mouse skills this first quarter. All primary grades have been introduced to LetterBubbles and are progressing. Second grade seems to enjoy it the most! A reminder that LetterBubbles seems to prefer the Chrome browser. In the meantime students are very comfortable navigating through ABCya and Starfall. Some of the primary teachers have opened free StudyLadder accounts. The students seem to really enjoy the site so I am encouraging more of the teachers to do the same.
KidBiz3000. Ms. Robinson has taken the time to set up Sumdog accounts for her class. Sumdog is a math gaming site that allows students to play against their classmates! This is the first time I've heard of the site so I'll be experiencing it right along with the students.
We also will continue to work on basic Microsoft Word skills in the primary grades. Cutting and pasting, changing fonts and text sizes are some of the basics we've covered. Last week the first grade seemed to stumble a little with counting ladybugs so this week we'll cut and paste color names. Our source for these awesome activities continues to be http://oakdome.com/k5/. I'm grateful that there are educators out there willing to share their ideas and activities. This website and lessons have made my unexpected transition into the computer lab much smoother.
6a: Understand and use technology systems
6b: Select and use applications effectively and productively
6d: Transfer current knowledge to learning of new technologies
CALLING ALL CONTEST SEEKERS!!! Here's information on two cool technology contests for teens...
1. "Bad Ad" Contest: We've done quite a bit of work on Media Literacy. I've used the frameworks from http://medialiteracyproject.org to develop everything I've taught you about Media Literacy. Now put your skills to work and get rewarded for it!!! Media Literacy Project has 2 contests- one is on bad ads. Find a bad ad and write about it. The second one is on counter ads. Create a counter ad to debunk information you see in a current ad. Both look great. Find more information and samples here: http://medialiteracyproject.org/news/bad-ad-counter-ad-contests-are-back
2. Radio Diaries! I was made aware of Radio Diaries through my fellowship with Columbia College's TEAM initiative. Here's the description that was sent to me:
Radio Diaries let us know about a competition to become their 2013 Teenage Radio Diarist. Their radio diarists are given an audio recorder and keep a radio diary for a year, describing the world from their perspective. Then they edit and air the stories on National Public Radio. This year in particular, they are very interested in stories from Chicago youth. To be eligible, students must submit a short piece of writing (100-400 words) and an accompanying image that tell a story (audio component is optional) on a website called cowbird.com by the deadline of Nov. 1.
If you are interested in participating in any of these contests let me know and I can help!
Media Literacy Part 4: Deconstructing