This is the first episode of a new classroom podcast I’m starting this year, using the free Opinion app on my iPhone. In this episode I discuss the new learning spaces I’m planning for my 3rd and 4th grade classroom this year.
Wes and I had a great time at Mobile Learning 2015. We connected with many friends and made several new connections. I am looking forward to having Cori Araza’s HS students partner with my students to learn how to create games! I am also planning on redesigning my classroom thanks to Erin Klein. Awesome weekend of learning.
My 3rd and 4th grade students spent a month researching different people as a part of our Black History Month project. In our 1:1 classroom students did their own independent research from web, video, and print to create narrated ebooks about their chosen person. Students used Book Creator for iPad to record their final reports. One student chose iMovie and created an iMovie trailer. I’m so proud of how hard they worked and how well their reports turned out.
Today after school Wes and I filmed my short 2 min video for the PBS learning Media “Digital Innovators” program. I am amazed at how comfortable I have become with integrating iPads into our everyday learning. My students love making, creating, and sharing what they know.
This week my students are discovering a new iPad app called News-O-Matic. It is a wonderful app for reading daily nonfiction stories based on current events. Students read articles that they’re interested in and then respond by either writing to the editor or responding with a picture. My students are eager to read the news every morning! One student Kevin was super excited when the editor wrote back to him!
We have been having a great time in our Makers Studio time learning about electricity. Several of my students have really learned about circuits by using the LittleBits to create their own machines. Kevin and Heaven made this automated Hand to wave to all of their friends. I’m amazed at how quickly they have figured the components out and been able to apply their learning to their different inventions. Their inventions are way more complicated than anything I would have assigned!
In keeping with our Maker classroom culture, students spent the morning designing and building a collage of the Macy’s Parade. Later, we enjoyed watching the 2013 parade together and playing parade bingo.
As I watch the parade with my family this morning, I hope my students are enjoying it with their families as well.
I really enjoyed hearing author Richard Hawley speak tonight about the importance of building positive relationships with our students, but most importantly our boys. He found that successful student/ teacher relationships were teacher initiated. Teachers who are willing to get to know and understand their students outside the classroom, be willing to share common interests, open up personally, and are willing to be active learners along side their students tended to have successful relationships.
He pointed out that schools where administration made building relationships a priority, where faculty development was devoted to finding out what works and what doesn’t work with classroom climates, and when teachers were given time to meet and adapt to the needs of the students were the most successful at promoting relationships.
I am thankful that I teach in a school where positive relationships with students and peers is a high priority and where support for parents, teachers, and students is not only encouraged, but a school wide goal.