Thursday, April 26, 2018

CONNECT 2018



Upon arriving to Connect 2018 I was very excited to see all the new and innovative things we
would learn and hear about.  We attended Bit 17 in the fall and it was action packed and filled
with fun and engaging things that we could immediately bring back and use in our classrooms
and with our students.


Obviously like any professional development session, certain things stood out to me more than
others.  Padlet, which is basically an online bulletin board of post it notes where students can
share ideas and information and have access to the ideas of others as well.  The great thing about
Padlet is that students can add not only information but pictures, videos and links to other
information.

   


Poll Everywhere is something that is not new to me however, it was used as a good diagnostic
assessment in order to gauge where your students are at the beginning of a unit and allow you to
quickly understand where you should be guiding your instruction.  




Sutori was a very neat way to create a visual timeline and interactively you can have your entire
class contribute and create a working timeline that includes pictures, links and videos as well.  I
really liked this idea because the entire class was involved in creating this timeline. For this
presenters purposes he used it to teach lessons from the Holocaust and students were given a
particular person to research and as students learned more information about their particular
survivor, they added information and facts to the digital timeline to create an amazing compilation
from the entire class.


Another neat web based application we found was called Storyboard That which in my opinion
is a way better version of bit strips and allows students to create online storyboards in which they
can manipulate scenes and characters to create just about anything.  I think that students would love
to use this to create so many different things. The nice thing about it, there are also a ton of graphic
organizers available to use for various activities on the classroom, so it extends beyond just using
it for a storyboard.



All in all we had a great and enriching experience where, once again we have many new,
exciting and fun tools to take back, implement in the classroom and share with our
colleagues.  
Connect 2018

Learning how to use KAHOOT to increase student engagement!  Using the game aspect and experience to encourage class participation and engagement while allowing educators to receive immediate feedback on student levels.

File:Kahoot Logo.svg



Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Connect 2018

Connect 2018

Just spent a great day getting inspired and excited to try some new things with my students! The pixel art was fun and a great way to let kids be creative while still having the flexibility to change their minds as many times as they'd like! No ERASER necessary!

During one session we learned about Sutori (sutori.com). This programwill enable students to create digital timelines including pictures, maps, videos, etc.  Thought this would be a great extension to our biography unit (although it could be utilized across the curriculum). There is a small annual fee for access but worth checking out! 

Key note speaker was AWESOME! Matt Miller encourages us to consider "ditching the books" and become risk-takers in the classroom. By stepping out of our comfort zones and trying new and sometimes unique approaches, we can make the subject/topic more meaningful and engage our students. #maverickteacher

What will tomorrow bring?

Bringing Biographies to Life

An Interactive Biography

Earlier this term, we read the biography of Harriet Tubman. Students were put into groups of 5 and everyone selected one section of a biography to complete independently (Early Life, Achievements, Challenges, Why They Are Famous, etc) as well as a media component to compliment their section. Next, they put all sections together on one group poster, using Scratch and Makey Makey to make it interactive. It was an engaging way to teach the elements of a biography and share their learning with younger students!

Keynote Speaker #1 - Matt Miller - Ditch That Textbook

At Connect 2018 Conference listening to keynote speaker, Matt Miller's presentation, Ditch that Textbook.

Textbooks should not be a crutch - educators should not lean on them.  Classrooms today should not be business as usual.  We are in the infancy of the digital revolution.  Almost anything can be done or found online. Information is at our fingertips.  The big push is to help students to utilize the information and use it to solve problems.  Problem solving is the big skill students need to better develop.

Don't just teach a lesson - create an experience for students.  Video calls with classes from other parts of the world can help students broaden their world views.  The 21st Century educator has to be willing to take risks to help students reach their potential.  Spark student's curiosity by creating lessons that are different - take risks. 
At Connect 2018 and loving the Pixel Art with Google Sheets workshop. I see so many art and math curriculum related activities that can be accomplished using this technology.

Connect 2018

Welcome to Connect 2018!


We've started our morning at the Connect 2018 conference.  Looking forward to all the new things we can bring back and share with our students.  First stop was creating fun pixel art using google sheets.  What a fun way to start the morning!  This is a pretty simple and easy way to engage your students to create something interesting.  Also there are many cross curricular connections to make particularly in Numeracy.  Can't wait to try this with my little ones!



Friday, March 23, 2018

Beebot Goes to the Olympics

Beebot goes to Pyeongchang

The Winter Olympics was a great opportunity to incorporate a fun and engaging coding activity.
Students selected a Canadian Olympian and completed a research activity (identifying their province, event, Olympic venue and results). Using this information, students wrote lines of code in order to move the Beebot to the various locations on the grid.

When preparing for this task, I created a master copy of the selected athletes and their information so I could verify student answers. I created the grid and laminated it then adhered velcro tabs. My thinking was this would make it easier to vary the grid and change it up for each group of students. It also allowed me to include more Canadian athletes so everyone had their own athlete. This was important as throughout this activity, students shared their research information with their peers as they were now the "expert".

**Now, as much as this velcro idea sounds great, when I tested it with my beautifully laminated cards, the Beebot got stuck! I tried taping each card down but it still wasn't working as intended. So, the solution.....PLEXIGLASS! This was AWESOME! The plexiglass gives a smooth surface and can be placed over any grid and used over and over again.


Get the coding worksheet and task card here

Bee Bot Math Challenge

The Bee Bot Math Challenge 

The Bee Bot Math challenge allows students to solve problems involving the addition and subtraction of single-digit whole numbers, using a variety of mental strategies and describe the relative locations of objects or people using positional language which links directly to the Ontario Curriculum while the students are engaged and having fun!

Task

Students are given a grid where numbers are placed randomly (1-12) initially on grid. Using a pair of dice, students are challenged to roll the dice and add the two numbers together. The sum of the two numbers will indicate where the bee bot will travel. Students then program the bee bot to travel to the correct response while explaining and problem solving how they must travel to reach their appropriate square.

Students absolutely loved this challenge. It was a fun and easy way to practice daily math computation and provide an easy way to re-enforce basic math facts.


Grade 3 Forces - Science

  • Link to May the Force Be With You task cardAfter completing their unit on Forces, the grade 3 students were asked to choose a force they felt comfortable teaching others about. Their goal, was to create a group poster with four sections, each teaching about a different force. 
  • Along with using their classroom notes and textbooks, students were given several periods to complete additional research on the force they chose. 
  • Once the students had compiled all of the necessary information, they began to sort their ideas into an informational writing piece. 
  • students then completed their section on the poster
  • As a last step, each student used Scratch and Makey Makey to make a voice recording of their information and add it to their poster to create a 'talking poster.'

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Parent Engagement Evening

Parent Engagement Evening

Welcome to
FULL STEAM AHEAD!

Makerspaces are popping up in schools across the country. Makerspaces provide hands-on, creative ways to encourage students to design, experiment, build and invent as they deeply engage in science, engineering, math, arts and tinkering with or without technology.



 






With the support of our CSC (parent council), St. Rose School has designed a space to accommodate such a wide range of activities for play based discovery and inquiry based learning in a STEAM environment for all our students!  Our new area is called, “CREATION STATION”.

Diversity and cross-pollination of activities are critical to the design, making and exploration process, and they are what set makerspaces apart from regular classrooms and have become an alternative learning environment to reach all learners.  
Our evening provided an opportunity for parents to participate first hand with this old "new" movement of tinkering, building, experimenting, failing and trying again with their children.  Parents and their children moved through several rotations as they explore the energy within the walls of St. Rose School.  Full STEAM Ahead was the perfect way to introduce and remind them of the importance of letting our kids create, invent, tinker, explore & discover.

  • Our Creation Station is a place where students can gather to create, invent, tinker, explore and discover using a variety of tools and materials.

  • Our Creation Station is NOT based on the materials you provide but rather the philosophy that is fostered surrounding purposeful creation. Project may or may not involve technology.

  • Students are free to express their creativity in a unique, free learning environment that encourages open ended exploration with some degree of planning and brainstorming

  • The goal is that students see themselves as creators and inventors that have an effect on the materials and the space around them.

  • The makerspace movement brings PLAY , CREATIVITY AND IMAGINATION TO LIFE!

Technology plays an important role in our STEAM projects. Through the implementation of both exploratory, teacher directed activities and student inquiry with an emphasis on 21st Century Competencies (Critical Thinking, Collaboration and Creativity and Innovation) and Global Goals for Sustainable Development (Quality Education, Gender Inequality, and Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure) as they progress through stages of coding proficiency.  


Our team shared a continuum of curriculum focused, teacher friendly stand alone coding resources that they created and implemented with their students.  The student work was displayed and demonstrated the value of integrating STEAM activities within the classroom setting.