Happy Leap Day!!! Above is a really good video that explains what a leap year is. Even though it was made in 2012 I thought the information was good and worth showing to a class. I particularly like it in relation to our fourth grade astronomy standards.
This came across my Facebook feed and if I still taught 4th grade I would definitely be signing up. Apparently Mattel has a Speedometry set for free for 4th grade teachers that helps to teach math and science skills using hot wheels. What?!?! How awesome is that?!?! The set includes lesson plans to help teachers integrate hot wheels into the curriculum.
It is super addictive! I love showing it to children and having them make observations in the nest. Right now there is a little chick under the eagle and students get excited when the eagle moves and they can catch a glimpse of it. They are less thrilled with the dead fish and squirrels but it does reinforce the food chain :).
In a previous post I talked about how I download videos from
YouTube using a YouTube downloader (I followed that up with another post on how to download videos another way). Someone at the FETC conference in Orlando,
FL taught me that I can download videos from YouTube yet ANOTHER way by simply typing an ss
before the y in YouTube. This has been much easier for me! (step-by-step directions are in the pictures above)
I use downloaded
videos as part of my lessons. Having them downloaded allows me to upload to
our Promethean flipcharts or PowerPoint presentations (it also takes out the
annoying ads before the clip). I can also upload a video I want students to
view into Edmodo or Google Classroom.
February is Black History Month and I am working with some
teachers to help students produce research videos.
The video above is one I completed as a student/teacher
The students have to produce a video that has 12 slides (or
pictures). When I broke it down as follows to them they really only had to find
1. The first slide has to contain a title and the
2. Where and when the person was born
3. Fact #1 (full sentence)
4. Fact #2
5. Fact #3 (by now tell me what he/she is famous
6. Fact #4
7. Fact #5
8. Fact #6
9. Fact #7
10. Fact #8
11. The year they died (or anything of note after
12. Credit slide – where did they get their facts (This
was made in their educreations app. They took a screen shot of it and edited it
in the photo editor)
I was giving students three class periods to do the project.
Day 1 – Pick your person and do your research (if they
couldn’t pick someone they pulled one out of a hat)
Day 2 – Get all your pictures
Day 3 – Put it together in iMovie
Note - I got the Billie Holiday song off of YouTube but
students would be expected to narrate and use music that is offered in iMovie.
I did say if any child picked a musician I would be happy to download music for
them and upload it to their Google drive for use.
This past week I worked with an elementary school that is
putting on a production of The Lion King Jr. They are a project based learning (PBL) school. In
an attempt to get all students involved in the process of the production they
modified the specials schedule for a week.
Every special area became something related to theater
production and students got to choose what special they wanted. They had that special
for two days before switching to another area of interest. The areas they had
were (this ran Monday – Friday with Friday being a review of what they learned
Morning (K2 students)
-Hand craft beading and Jewelry (run by a
-Fabric Design (run by the art teacher)
-Singing (run by the music teacher)
-Choreography (run by the dance teacher)
-Improve (run by a community volunteer)
Afternoon (3-5 students)
-Make Up Design
-Set Painting and Design
I was asked to work with the afternoon graphic design/media
group (with the schools computer lab teacher and media specialist). Third
graders designed tickets. Fourth graders designed posters and fifth graders
It was a fun experience. We got to teach students about design
elements, we introduced them to the old fashioned “In a World…” trailers from
the 80’s and they learned a lot about how to use their respective tech tools. This was a first for the school and hopefully not the last time they do it.
Some items of note…we could not use any copyright image
(except for the logo) or any copyright music. We had to teach students
how to search google images and refine the search parameters to images “labeled
for reuse”. We used www.freeplaymusic.com
for the music and I downloaded a couple of songs for them to choose from into
their Google Drive (I gave them Loyal Magnificence and African Footprints to
I started this blog many years ago as a classroom science teacher with the express purpose of sharing notebooking ideas with other educators. I have since moved into a technology coach position within our district so this site has morphed into a general teaching blog. Basically anything that I see or do in schools that I think is pretty cool gets highlighted here. If you are visiting to find notebooking information please look at my earlier posts. I have tried to label all my posts so information is easier to find...so, when in doubt look at the labels. As always, if you have any question please feel free to email me and I will do my best to help!