Karen Purdy has been busy with Brain Breaks in her classroom. She's been using GoNoodle, a website that offers free brain breaks 'that help channel classroom energy for good.' The kids have a blast! Bodies in motion, brains in motion!
Sherrie Johnson, the Gifted and Talented teacher at Forest Trail Elementary, approached me about how she could better integrate tech in to her curriculum. We have met on a regular basis; brainstormed ideas, and shaken up some traditional units.
First Grade: Zooland Project
Fourth Grade: Architecture Unit
Last year, fourth grade students were involved in learning about different buildings around the world. They were asked to identify key architectural features and produced a short report on their building.
In another third grade classroom, Ms. Fromberg's students involved in the same economics unit used the website Kerpoof to create movies. The teachers used the site Bizworld as a basis for this unit. Sadly, Kerpoof will be no more after April 15th, as Ms. Brandenburg's class demonstrated there are other many other movie production apps on the iPad and on the web.
This is an interesting podcast. Listen and ponder. Comment below if you wish.
As a parent and an educator tasked with helping teachers integrate I often ask, "How much is too much?" I have always tried to live my life based on BALANCE. I saw a Huffington Post article linked here, and was perturbed. For me it's a constant conversation and a constant battle. I remember similar battles as a child. Too much TV; too much playing with dolls; too much time outside...
There's always going to be another battle a parent has to fight.
I think I'm just choosing the road of balance.
I came across this tweet and was curious about it. I can't really claim to fully understand his point but I am curious about it nonetheless. In my attempt to decipher the meaning of the message, I decided to break it down in to parts:
What do the words mean?
I believe that a 'Classroom of the Future' or the '21st Century Classroom' is less about the space and more about what goes on IN the space. Yes, I agree that technology, furniture and color can play a part in facilitating learning I believe that a teacher can still be given all of this and still continue to teach in a manner that is not conducive to effective learning experiences. I fear we are putting the cart before the horse. We need to focus on pedagogy where the heart of the classroom is no longer the teacher but the students themselves.
Ms. Brandenburg's third grade class have been involved in an Economics Unit as part of their Social Studies curriculum. Their goal was to produce and market a movie. They had to choose a logo, create a motto and produce an animation using the app 'Puppetpals'. In order to make the activity as authentic as possible, Ms. Brandenburg's class invited 2 kinder classes to watch the world premiere of their movies. The Kinders were given play money and had to choose which movie/movies they wanted to win. This was then added to the ledger of the movie companies so an overall winner could be determined. It was exciting to watch the students assume the role of people in the business world. Authentic learning at it's best!
The Return of Rudolph
Bandits versus Police
Young Women Who Code