Considering our whole school focus on teacher walk-throughs with total focus on reading and math, we have collaborated on several projects for our tech and writing classes.
In reading, we often wrote reflections on our independent reading and lesson objectives in a Reading Notes Google Form.
We collaborated on the Global Read Aloud (Tuck Everlasting) with a school in North Carolina, and their answers helped us understand character traits and cause and effect. We referred to those discussions all year to learn to apply the strategies in our other books.
Dr. Jeff Bowman Skyped to us from Antarctica — his work is an inspiration to us as we also choose our own science topics to study in our Personal Persuasive Projects using Gooru Learning as our science resource, which is accessed through our Google Apps account.
Two of our students created a project for Veteran’s Day using Google Docs Presentation and Wordle. It will be written about in a tech book. The students continued to use our strategy for all of our products: consider design! How do you choose the format, color, arrangement, etc. of your work, images, and text to get your message across to your audience?
Google Apps For Education continues to be our foundation for gathering information in spreadsheets and forms, and for drafting our writing. Whether we write independently or collaborate with each other, the process of writing and thinking is enhanced and improved through our work in GAFE. Teacher Dashboard provides the management system to monitor and offer immediate feedback with a quick click to add comments to each student’s work. It’s a lifesaver for busy teachers. Read about GAFE, Gooru Learning, and Teacher Dashboard here. We even collaborated with two classes in Iowa to create lessons for other students in the Parts of Speech. Some students created skits and movies and some created Google Presentations. I’ll add the links to the final products later if they are still available. All that collaboration was completed through team Google documents using an ongoing dialogue within the document and within the chat/comments. It was an amazing experience we need to recreate for other collaborative projects next year.
Our student blog was even nominated as “Best Class Blog,” so we feel very honored, and that we are continuing to move in a good, learning direction. Thanks, Mrs. Krebs for the nomination. We were able to participate in one round of “Quad Blogging,” which brought our students, once again, into learning other student perspectives as we learned with schools in the United States and the United Kingdom.
So, looking back, and considering the year’s focus for the school, we truly did continue learning “in the cloud” with excellent global citizenship. I thank my students for their kindness and courtesy, and their willingness to accept differing views. Of course, we are EAGLES, which stands for: Effort, Acceptance, Generosity, Loyalty, Enthusiasm, and Self-respect. If you look through our projects in the links on this post, you will see how the students do represent EAGLES. Thanks, kids.
As we look to the future, we will be starting student individual blogs and continue our GAFE reading and writing.
Do you have any ideas for us?
Geeky Gramma ~~
Retired Middle School Language Arts Teacher ~~
Writer and Thinker