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5th grade students recently used Genial.ly to create dynamic presentations. Students determined relevant information about post-revolutionary presidents for History class. They applied the knowledge they learned in class to create an interactive and attractive presentation. Learn more about Álvaro Obregón and see why students are engaged by using this new tool.
Keyboarding instruction and practice has been an important part of the fifth-grade curriculum during the fourth bimester. After an introduction to the features of the online keyboarding program, Typing Club (asfg-mx.typingclub.com), in-class instruction stressed the importance of correct hand position and posture. Instilling good habits in students while young can help them prevent repetitive motion injuries later in life.
Students were reminded that for beginning typists, accuracy and form are much more important than speed. Students are being given regular keyboarding homework, with grading focused on practice and relative improvement rather than a words-per-minute score. Students seem highly motivated to improve their typing proficiency and enjoy the interface and self-pacing of Typing Club. As students improve their touch-typing skills, they will need to use less brain power for finding the letters so they can focus more on what they want to say.
Sixth-grade students recently created “video poems” in Language Arts class. After choosing one of their own original poems, students selected appropriate images and music to fit the tone and subject matter of their poem. In addition to learning about the basics of video production, students were required to include titles and end credits that cited the sources of their images, reinforcing the digital literacy lessons they have been learning this year. Students were engaged in expressing their thoughts and feelings through images and words.
Recently, fifth graders in Spanish class created news podcasts detailing current events here at ASFG. The student journalists worked in teams to write and edit scripts. Then, using Garageband, they recorded themselves, edited the audio, and added “jingles” and sound effects to their podcasts. Some of the topics covered included the musical performance “Hairspray,” service learning, International Games Day, and visits by authors Pam Muñoz Ryan and Maria Garcia Esperon. Students were engaged in the process of writing and speaking because they had the opportunity to choose their topics and work with their friends. Check out the podcasts by Giselle & Alina or Esteban & Elisa & Ana or Santiago & Alejandro and learn more about what is happening at school!
Working in pairs, students scouted suitable locations in the virtual world, selected materials, and got to work. In addition to creating the bridge, the teams were required to document the process by taking screen shots of their creations, providing directional coordinates, and measuring the distance of the bridge span in meters. The students were also asked to reflect on challenges they faced and explain how they worked together to solve problems. Perhaps we will see a version of one of these bridges in the real world someday!
Students also practiced ethical use of others' creative work by providing appropriate credits for the images they used in their presentations. Locating and crediting sources of media are important skills that students are hoping to master by the end of the year. Students were motivated to create and present in this project because they had the freedom to choose a topic that excites them.
Students in 7th grade social studies taught each other about the dynasties of China recently. Students collaborated in small groups to become experts in a specific dynasty. Then they created a Google Slide presentation and taught the rest of the class important aspects of that dynasty including social, political and technological characteristics.
Throughout this project, 7th graders practiced their information literacy skills by locating reliable websites and citing the sources of their information and images properly. They also practiced good presentation design using short statements and lots of images.
Students were motivated to learn from their peers because after all the presentations were over, students created timelines about all of the dynasties using their notes. With an online tool, each student demonstrated what they learned by creating a timeline with information and images about each dynasty. This unique way of assessing learning required students to process what they learned and summarize it in their own words.