Saturday, March 8, 2014

It's a Wrap!

Students want to work on things that matter to them and matter in the real world. The use of technology, in particular, is one of the most effective ways to make learning relevant for today’s learners. Teachers can bring real-world connections into the curriculum and connect students’ work with the larger world.

To get things started, I started looking around doing some research and came across this fabulous resource from Read Write Think, the website of the International Reading Association and the National Council of Teachers of English. To make things easier, I told them it had to pertain to school. This project was a collaborative process so students spent time in writing, library and tech class working through the process.

Basically, at the end of the first week of this class project, we had the name of our newspaper and a plan for who was going to write what story in what section. Since newspaper writing is a kind of informational text writing, it all starts with the 5 W's (and H). It's all about the facts. It took most students about two class times to generate a good list of questions.

Once students had all their information, the teachers in the classrooms reviewed the inverted pyramid structure(from the Jack and Jill lesson). In this structure, facts are written in a story in the order of importance, not sequential order like most students are used to writing.

Once their rough draft was complete, the students were to self-edit their writing. The next step was revising, so the students were partnered with a Luther College student who is studying to become a teacher. The college students would provide our 5th grade students feedback in a timely matter so they were able to make corrections. I utilized the students tech class to use the computer lab when they were finished editing their stories. most everyone was done with their stories. I had the students all type their stories with a headline and their byline into Google Docs.

Then there is the template found by searching the Google Doc Templates for “Student Newspaper.” Someone else out there had done the hard work of creating the template.

Check out the final product:

NEWS Broadcast

Taking the information that students had written about from their articles was then turned into a news broadcast. Students wrote a script, and imported clips from different interviewing segments. The day of recording we utilized easyprompter, green screen, iMovie and Green Screen by Doink. If you ever wanted to check out the Green Screen app watch this intro video, its easy to use and student friendly for learning about green screen effects and chroma key.

Students recording the scrips

Check out  the News Broadcast:

When students are engaged in real-world activities they not only learn the knowledge and skills of the traditional curriculum, they also learn 21st-century skills and global competencies that empower them as global and digital citizens.

It's a Wrap!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

iMovie Book Trailers

iMovie is a great tool for students to use and create movies in the classroom or at home. One of the best features of iMovie, which can be used on any device, is the trailers feature. Trailers? Yes, trailers! As in movie trailers like the ones you see on television, in the theaters, YouTube, etc.

Even though iMovie has all of the placeholders you need to make a great trailer with your video, you still have to craft the wording to get the right message across. Students choose a theme that complimented their "Good Fit"book they were reading in the classroom, inserted appropriate text into the pre-made storyboard, and customize text and photos.
iMovie App

Here are the CCSS standards addressed with this project:
  • NETS.2. Interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital media.
  • NETS.1 Demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology.
  • SL.3.2. Determine the main ideas and supporting details of a text read aloud or information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
  • SL.3.5. Create engaging audio recordings of stories or poems that demonstrate fluid reading at an understandable pace; add visual displays when appropriate to emphasize or enhance certain facts or details.
Look at the work, the creativity, the thought processes which is involved in applying the iMovie Trailers to your next book project instead of the dreaded book report.

Here are a few examples: