Students were assessed on their video and audio editing skills as well as on the thoroughness of their research and citations. The videos were obviously a lot of fun for the students to make and they demonstrated a lot of creativity. Learn more about Anime and Television or Mario Brothers and J-Pop.
Seventh-grade students in Social Studies classes recently took virtual trips to Japan to research popular culture and report back to their classmates with fun and informational videos. With the power of the internet at their fingertips, students first did extensive research on the topic of their choice, then they used the magic of the green screen and video editing software to create videos that explored their topics. From manga to vending machines to Tokyo street fashion, students covered a wide range of fascinating topics.
impact the economy, society and the environment through the lenses of Migration, Habitat Preservation, Pollution, Water Resources and more. To summarize and synthesize their learning, students worked together to write a script, take 100+ photographs and then edit their movie. Students were engaged throughout the process and enjoyed watching everyone's videos.
We reported on Fantasy Geopolitics in 8th grade earlier this year describing how it works to choose countries for a team and how scores are determined related to the amount of news for that country. Choosing a Fantasy Geopolitics team has been a tremendous success in all the civics classes with student engagement through the roof. Students are actively trading countries amongst each other or dropping and adding countries. To do this they must fill out a form and turn it in to their teacher. The form must describe why they want to drop a country, “there has been no news coming out of South Sudan for three days,” and why they want to add a certain country, “I want to add Chile because I read on the news last night that there was an earthquake off the coast of the country.”
Every Friday students complete an internet current events assignment. They find one major news story from each of the countries they drafted and complete a questionnaire that asks them to summarize, analyze, and reflect on each article. Finally, they have to look at the leader board (which countries are getting the most points via news articles) and explain why this is the case. They also have to look at their least performing country and assess why they think it is not being mentioned much in the news. For extra credit they can look at the Trends Map (a map on the site that shows where news is happening) and pick a country with no (zero) points, and find a recent news article about that country. Then they do the same thing as above- summarize, analyze, and reflect.
Participating, and succeeding, in the game requires students to be constantly reviewing news websites. They are looking for trends, looking for news that will give them points if they grab that country. The competition and constant change engage and motivate students to stay current in worldwide news.
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 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.
Fifth grade social studies classes have had multiple lessons in information literacy with both upper school librarian Victoria Robins and middle school technology teacher Devin Wolfe. Students learned why it’s important to carefully evaluate the websites they use for research and information gathering, and they used these critical thinking skills to determine which websites of a list of seven were real websites and which were “hoax” sites, meant to fool them. The students definitely learned that you can’t believe something just because you read it on the internet—just ask them about the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus!
Geopolitical team, but students draft countries to form their team. Each country has its own rank that fluctuates from day to day based on data from the New York Times and the GDELT Project. Points are given for each article in the New York Times related to a country and based on the 'Goldstein Tone' generated from the GDELT Project.
Natural disasters, war, crime, politics, business, pop culture and more can affect how a country performs. Students are engaged in learning more about current worldwide news so they can choose the best team. They can check their score and other player's scores using the Rankings pages of the Fantasy Geopolitics site. Their teacher provides the opportunity to switch, trade or dump "players" if students feel their countries are not performing well. In order to make a change to their team, students must explain and justify to their teacher why they want to make the change. What a fun way to encourage students to stay current with world events!
will report back to the ITAC committee on the successes and failures of the devices throughout this testing phase to help the committee make informed decisions about purchasing new devices. In addition to these devices, the middle school computer lab was replaced by a cart with MacBooks. This means that since the end of the 2013-14 school year, fifth and 6th grade have tripled their access to laptops and devices. In the photos you can see 5th grade students using the MacBooks to learn about the kingdoms of life in Science class. You can also see students in 6th grade using the Chromebooks to learn about the American Revolution. Students are engaged and excited to be using these tools in their classrooms.
mindful of the materials they used to prevent waste; choose a tool they have never used before, and perform an action to help solve a problem OR educate others about a problem. With this freedom, students were motivated to create a variety of products including game shows like Jeopardy and Family Feud, Wevideos, Prezis, Powtoons, E-books, Flip-a-clips, infographics, websites, audio presentations like radio programs and songs, and video presentations including
ASFG students met with their peers via Google Hangouts four times this year. Each meeting had a different student leader who facilitated the discussion to include as many students and viewpoints as possible. Students also shared with each other using a private Google+ community. They shared timelines of important events in their lives, pictures of school, and projects. This program motivates students because they have the opportunity to lead and engage with students in another part of the world.