Monday, November 24, 2014

Measuring and Creating a Line Plot

We are wrapping up our unit about measuring in inches and centimeters. Pairs of students were asked to measure 10 items in the classroom that were less than 1 foot (good estimating practice because before they could start they needed to create a list of what they planned to measure). Once their list was created they measured the items and recorded their length. If an item was greater than a foot they needed to find an alternate object to measure. After all the measuring was complete the pair created a line plot on an app of their choice (most used Drawing Pad or My Story) showing the length of their objects. Finally, pairs shared their line plots with each other and made statements about their findings.

Writing Expanded/Super Sentences with Stuffed Animals

Students brought stuffed animals to school today. They had a chance to write an expanded/super sentence about what their stuffed animal was doing in our classroom. We are also practicing using interesting verbs.

Writing 2 Expanded/Super Sentences to Show How Descriptive Words Make a Difference

We continue to talk about adding detail to sentences using adjectives, adverbs (-ly words), and other details such as explaining when, where, and why.

I started each student with the sentence "Musicians played." They needed to choose 2 types of music that musicians could play (we brainstormed together). Using an app of their choice they wrote 2 sentences, one about each type of music, that would demonstrate their understanding of an appropriate situation for that type of music and how to convey that information to the reader.

Identifying Food Groups

We have finished studying foods in the 5 foods groups and are now moving on to mixed foods and balanced meals. To assess student understanding of food groups I had them use 2 apps. First, students used the YummyPlate app. After completing the game they took a screenshot of their plate and imported it to Skitch. They swapped iPads with a partner and their partner labeled the food group for each of the 4 foods.

Next, pairs of students read story in the app VeggieBottoms. They selected 5 pages and took a screenshot. They imported those 5 screenshots into PicCollage and labelled the food groups.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Collaborative Writing About Pilgrims and Wampanoags

We are continuing our study of Pilgrims and Wampanoags, this week using information from the Scholastic website and letters sent by Scholastic. To review information from these resources as well as from the books we read previously I asked students to share pieces of information with several different partners.

Once I knew students had a solid grasp of different facts we moved to recording our knowledge. To do so we tried the new WeWrite+ for the first time. Of the 11 pairs working on this, 9 met with success. Two groups were having some formatting difficulties so I asked them to switch to WeMap. This way all students were able to work on their iPads independently (no wasted time while a partner typed and they merely watched) while at the same time sharing and discussing.

Review of 2D Shapes and Relating to 3D Faces

This week I asked students to create 3 2D shapes from those we have studied that are also the face of a 3D shape (square, rectangle, triangle). They created each of the shapes using the Geoboard app and named and added 1 attribute for each shape (in the Skitch app). They used this background in Tellagami and then told about the 3D shape(s) that had this type of face (no videos included here).

Next time I would also ask students to include infomration in their Tellagami about why I didn't ask them to make a circle on the geoboard. I would also have them list more attributes--I had thought the screen would get too crowded but that didn't seem to be an issue.

"How to" Directions for a Math Activity

In the Houghton Mifflin anthology students read directions about how to complete a tangram activity. After a brief discussion about how to write a "how to", pairs of students wrote directions on how to complete a Suduko puzzle, how to complete a pattern block activity, or how to make a growing pattern. Most groups chose the Strip Design app but a few used 30Hands.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Math Analogies

About a month ago pairs of students worked together using the Little Solvers analogies app. This week I students used the Math Analogies level 1 app. I asked each of them to work for a 5 minute period to solve as many analogies as possible. When their timer went off they took a screenshot of their final analogy.

More Number Talks

We continue to solve number talks about once a week or once every other week. This week for the first time I asked students to label the 2 strategies they used to reach their solution.

Next Round of Our Bridge Inquiry/Design Thinking Activity

This week we returned to our bridge building unit.

Groups of students looked back at photos of the bridge they built a few weeks ago using books, Lego, toothpicks, index cards, and tape. They had a mandatory 5 minute talking time in which they were not allowed to access any supplies, including pencils and paper. I really wanted it to be time for group reflection about what went well with their initial bridge, what needed improvement, and what changes they wanted to implement.

Following the discussion, students were given the same supplies as before and they got to work. After the building period we tested each bridge against the listed criteria (length, height, and what it had to support). Students were excited that all bridges past the test this time. As a group they had a mandatory 3 minute talking time to reflect about why their bridge was more successful. Finally, each student completed an individual reflection, answering 3 sentence stems. They could do this reflection on paper or any app of their choice.

Understanding the 5 Food Groups

We are again working on our nutrition unit from the Dairy Council. Each year I've been changing-up the iPad projects a little bit. This year after completing our workbook pages about the 5 food groups I asked student to read more about them. I am really loving the Epic app. Students reading at or above grade level read books about each food group from that app as well as paper books. The books in Epic that have information about the food groups were a little advanced for some of my lower readers, so they read several paper books. Epic does have books for younger students (probably pre-school/K) about the food groups but they are really just picture books without much other information.

After reading with partners, students were paired with a different partner to create a food group book using My Story. Each page in the book focused on 1 food group and gave some examples (words and pictures), why the food group is nutritionally beneficial, and how many servings kids should have each day. Finally, pairs of students shared their book with a different pair. They read to each other and checked for accuracy, discussing any points of disagreement and referring back to the text for evidence when necessary.

We will continue this unit with the a snack Popplet, balance meal creation, and some of the other activites done in the last few years.

3D Shapes Quick Video

As I have done the last couple years when we finished our 3D shape unit pairs of students created a poster listing attributes for 3 shapes of their choice (sphere, cube, cone, rectangular prism, pyramid, and cylinder).

This year I added an additional independent assessment a few days later. I asked students to create an audio presentation describing the attributes of the 3 shapes they did not include on their poster. Given the audio component most students used Tellagami, but a few also chose Chatterpis Kids, the video app native to the iPad, and Educreations.

Tellagami 3D Shapes