1. The Progressive Story Project: My teaching partner, @missbartel, stumbled upon this project last year. Both our grade 5/6 classes participated with enthusiasm in the spring, and engagement levels were high throughout. The Progressive Story Project was developed by Karen Ditzler, an instructional technology specialist, from Pennsylvania USA. Groups of 5 classes, in schools around the world, work together to write a complete story. Here’s how the project works:
The first class brainstorms and writes the intro paragraph(s).
Then the next class reads the paragraph(s), brainstorms and decides how they want to continue the story.
This will continue until the last class on the list writes the ending and gives the story a title.
Classes can edit their section of the story on the Wiki.
Once your class has finished the writing part, students can choose scenes to illustrate from their writing.
Once all illustrations have been submitted, a VoiceThread is created of the entire story.
This is a link to the story my grade 5/6 class created last spring.
2. QuadBlogging: The primary goal of QuadBlogging is to increase the flow of traffic to a class blog or a number of student blogs in a particular class. The project creates opportunities for classes, in different school across the globe, to develop their blogging and commenting skills. If you are familiar with the Twitter hashtag #comment4kids, then QuadBlogging achieves a similar outcome but in a more formal way. Here’s how the project works:
School A becomes the focus school for an entire school week
Schools B, C, D spend the week visiting school A’s blog(s), leaving comments and interacting with the content of the blog(s)
In the second week of the project, school B becomes the focus school
Schools A, C, D spend the week visiting school B’s blog(s), leaving comments and interacting with the content of the blog(s)
During the third week of the project, school C becomes the focus school for the week
Schools A, B, D spend the week visiting school C’s blog(s), leaving comments and interacting with the content of the blog(s)
The cycle continues until all schools have had the opportunity to be the focus school.
If you are aware of other ongoing projects, which attempt to connect teachers and students across the globe please feel free to add a link and the title of the project in the comment section below.
VoiceThread is a web2.0 tool that allows users to create and upload video, text, images, and audio (known as content) to a secure server from where anyone with access can interact with the content. Think of it as an audio blog.
Example: Grade 6 Science learning outcome: Earth and Space science – explain obstacles unique to exploration of a specific extreme environment.
In the PLO example at the top of the post, your students will find examples of extreme environments using images, video, or text. They will use the audio feature to comment on the content by explaining why the chosen environment is extreme. Students will discuss why the environment is extreme, and what makes it difficult to life there. Each student uploads a different example of an extreme environment and comments on their own thread as well as other class member’s threads. This is great way to practice and assess oral language as well as introduce and practice science specific vocabulary.
Suggested Achievement Indicators (audio comments/responses) for this PLO are:
Identify the salient characteristics of an extreme environment (e.g., space, polar ice, oceans, volcanoes, and the atmosphere — a place that humans do not naturally inhabit but choose to explore)
Give several examples of resources and knowledge that can be obtained from distant explorations
Give several examples of how technology can be used by humans to travel to and explore an unknown environment