BITS & BYTES
NEWS AND VIEWS FROM THE PS 196 COMPUTER LAB!
I hope our students and teachers will find some interesting new sites and tools here to make learning and creating content easier and more engaging.
PARENTS AND FRIENDS: PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT. OUR KIDS LOVE TO KNOW OTHERS ARE READING AND ENJOYING THEIR WORK.
Please look at the categories, located to the right of this post and just below the Voki cartoon. I will be organizing posts in categories to make it easier for you to find the good stuff faster. This blog is a new and growing online environment, so check back often and please add your voice by commenting and contributing! To add a comment to a post, click on the title of the post and then scroll down the page. Also, please check out the student work on our companion wikispace! ps196q.wikispaces.com.
IMPORTANT RULES ABOUT COMMENTS BY STUDENTS!
- Never use your full name. First names (and last initial if needed) only. You can include your class number so I will know who you are.
- Never put any personal identifying information like phone numbers, addresses, etc. online.
- Keep your comments positive and the language appropriate. Your parents, teachers, assistant principal and principal will be able to read what you write. Make them proud of you!
- I will try to respond to comments in a timely manner — I’m aiming for twice a week at the minimum (but since I am such a geeky person, I will probably get back to you faster!)
- You can add comments to other peoples’ comments — again, keep your tone and language positive and helpful.
- All comments are moderated. That means no one gets published until the comment is approved by the administrators of the blog. If your comment doesn’t show up and you wonder why, feel free to ask me about it.
If we follow the rules, blogging will be a great way for us to communicate and collaborate safely in a great learning community online!
I’m looking forward to another great year at P.S. 196!
If you have any technology-related questions, please write them as a comment to this post and I will do my best to answer them as accurately and quickly as possible. This is the appropriate place for students to post their questions to me.
For parents and adults who would prefer a personal response, instead of adding to the comment thread, please complete the form below, including your email. After you complete the form. click on “Submit.” Your information will be sent directly to my email and will not appear on the blog.
We watched a video recording of Margaret Wise Brown’s “The Important Book” and then used Pixie to write our own “Important Book Poems.” To see and hear our terrific poetry, click HERE. Please leave a comment on this post after you have listened to our work. We will be adding more and more finished books to our wiki in the next few weeks.
First grade students have been writing multi-page books in Pixie about the Four Seasons (not the rock group, but the geographical four seasons, also known as Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall). I’m uploading them to our wiki as they are completed. To see them, CLICK HERE.
So excited to be holding our Hour of Code classes all next week! The Hour of Code is a global movement reaching tens of millions of students in 180+ countries. We will explore Code.org and students will get to solve challenges featuring familiar digital characters such as Angry Birds, characters from Star Wars and Frozen, Minecraft and new this year, Moana! Solving these challenges introduces and provides practice using skills such as sequencing, conditional statements, debugging and more. If you want to join your child by participating just go to Code.org and select a challenge. You might find you love programming too!
We are nearing the end of our Week of Code and almost every class has had the opportunity to try their hand at programming a wide range of challenges, even Pre-K! (We did Kodable as a group and they were awesome!). I hope all of the students, and their families give coding a chance. It provides a great exercise for the brain! And it’s a lot of fun too!
Here are some third graders happily coding away!
Second graders have been busy writing their first multi-page book in Pixie telling us something about which they are experts — “All About Me!” Click HERE to see completed work and check back often as we add more finished projects. Please leave a comment on this post so your children will know you’ve visited.
Third graders will learn about endangered animals by researching an animal and creating a graphic novel that informs and persuades, using Comic Life. We will be using a number of online resources to gather information about the assigned animals, and then we will be writing persuasive comics to inspire others to reach out and help save these valuable and amazing creatures.
Before we can begin, each student must complete the Google form in Google Classroom so animal assignments can be made. I will do my best to give each student an assignment that will fascinate and generate enthusiasm.
Here is an example of a graphic novel done previously by a third grade student. Click on the picture to see the completed comic.
We will be using Google Classroom and a Google Doc for our research sheets, and while you can still go to the Weebly site to get some information, we will be using the Research Tool that is inside the Google Doc. We will also be able to click to save the URL (web address) of all the websites where we get our information and add a footnote (a list with all the credit information for every website you take information from placed at the bottom of your Doc.). By using Google Classroom we can save on paper and ink and save some trees while learning how to work “in the cloud.” It’s all good!
Once you have your assignment, I will distribute information sheets where you can write your notes as you do your research. You can begin your research on our Weebly website on Endangered Animals, where you will find some pictures and links to websites that will have all the information you need.
The next step will be to start writing your story. We will learn how to use storyboards and will use the checklist below to make sure we have included all the required pieces of this project. Below is a sample storyboard (click to make it larger).
This is the project rubric so you can check and see if you are on track for the grade you would like to get. Click on the link to get the Word file.
Grade 3 Endangered Animal Graphic Novel Rubric
New for this year! Google Apps for Education (formerly GAFE, but as of October 4, 2016, the new name is G Suite For Educaion).
For an overview of G Suite for Education, click on the link below:
Students in grades three through five have already been doing a lot of their technology work using Google Classroom. This allows them 24/7 access to assignments, the ability to ask me questions about assignments and get a response, and prevents them from losing their work! It also helps students who may be absent to keep up with what we are doing in class. All they have to do is log in to Classroom.google.com, use their unique username and password, and they can be brought up to speed immediately.
Students WILL NOT HAVE EMAIL ACCESS. They will have a Google Account but email has been disabled. Their Google Account allows them to use Classroom, create documents, presentations, spreadsheets, drawings and surveys within the Google apps.
Over the new couple of weeks fourth grade students will be completing their I Love New York State movies. Our first team to complete their are two students from Class 431, Catherine and Abigail. Here is their movie, so you can get an idea of what the kids have been working on.
431 Abigail Catherine Adirondacks from Ellen Phillips on Vimeo.
Third grade students will be exploring career options and sharing their discoveries and ambitions on Glogster or Pixie. This is a sample Glog (a multimedia poster) that I created to give the students an idea of what they can do. Of course, I expect their completed career projects to be much more exciting than my sample. I’m also adding a link to download the research form we will be using, our primary “getting started” research link, as well as attaching the rubric for this project. Stay tuned and see what your kids create!
Third Grade Careers Rubric Glog
Second graders have been busy learning about animation as they create original animated nursery rhymes, complete with voiceovers! Click HERE to see their animations. I am adding new completed work for the next few weeks, so check back often.
NOTE: You will be greeted by all videos playing simultaneously, for about a minute. You can go through and click pause on each, or just let them run down and then select the ones you want to hear. I’m working on disabling the auto play feature in the program. Please leave a comment on this post for your children. Feedback is important to them!