31 Jul 2014

iPads in the classroom workshop 31-07-2014

Some practical activities using iPad apps in the classroom...an e-learning workshop for teachers...

Remembering the SAMR Model...we will be aiming to be actively creating (modifying and redefining) our own products to share information with the ipads (rather than just "playing games" with apps)...

Today's task/s: incorporating maths, writing, oral language, visual language...
  1. Use the camera to take 5-6 photos of 2-d shapes in the playground or classroom.
  2. Use the Skitch app to label the photos. Then you can use the photos from your PhotoStream or CameraRoll to...
  • Create a Tellagami in which you verbally describe the attributes of one of the shapes you photographed.
    • Your Tellagami can be saved to use as a video file (to upload to Vimeo* or You Tube), or shared to Facebook, Twitter etc (if you have activated those accounts) or sent as an email for further sharing via a laptop.
  • Create a ShadowPuppet presentation about your shapes. - this can also be saved as a video to be shared in various ways**
  • Create an Explain Everything or Show Me presentation about the shapes - also make into a video to share.
  • Create a QR code for one of your presentations and share it to a blog or send it as an email to print - the ipad has a QR Creator app as well as a QR Reader app.

* from Vimeo or You Tube the video can be embedded into a blog for immediate sharing, or the URL link can be copied to use in a document or website eg a Facebook post

** The pupils and I usually set a criteria for the work that is to be shared - this often happens during the writing process that occurs before the app is used - we use the appropriate text type features to suit the purpose of our video and the audience that will be viewing it. This means that the pupils write a draft and peer check it against both the criteria of the text type eg an explanation as well as then having a criteria of what needs to be included when the writing is 'published' via the video app.

  • I usually also set a time limit eg for an iMovie they are only allowed maybe 30 seconds of completed/edited video in which to share their message (iMovies that are too long will clog up the memory space of the ipad account)

23 Jul 2014

Working on our Lino prints...

Today we moved onto transferring our 'gyotaku'-inspired fish designs to the lino and began our cutting...pupils rubbed pencil on the back of their design drawing so that they could then reverse trace the picture onto the lino...
Next step was to make sure they could see the lines clearly on the lino block...

...before beginning to cut out the design...lino block is softened by ten seconds in the microwave and pupils were given very strict instructions to have their steadying hand BEHIND THE BLADE! (Out of nineteen pupils there was only one boy who immediately cut his finger about ten seconds after starting and having his hand sitting to the side of the blade...sigh...)

...most of the pupils have not done this before and were really intrigued with the technique...their fish are going to print beautifully! (To see finished prints, go to this link: http://thekahukids.blogspot.co.nz/2014/08/third-instalment-of-our-fish-lino-prints.html
I promise you won't be disappointed!)

20 Jul 2014

MEASUREMENT: length and area

Just a short week of activities to refresh the pupils' prior knowledge and give them opportunities to add to their skills with using length and area.

LEVEL THREE ACHIEVEMENT OBJECTIVES - specific learning outcomes:
* Use correct units for measurements – mm, cm, m, km.
* Convert from one unit to another.
* Solve problems using measurement.
* Estimate length or area sensibly.
* Know the units of area.
* Find the perimeter of a shape.
* Find the area of a shape including irregular shapes.

I will use adaptations of the units available in the Level Three lesson activities from NZ Maths:
Stepping Out - make estimates of lengths between 50cm-1.5m; measure lengths in cm and m; convert between cm and m
Paper Planes - measure accurately using mm, cm and m
Perplexing Perimeters - measure accurately using standard units; perform addition calculations to find perimeters of objects
Giant Mystery - measure accurately using mm and cm
How Do You Measure This? - a range of practical, problem-solving activities

ART - printmaking

Ben Reid
My Pinterest board for printmaking ideas (mainly lino prints)

With my level (Year Six pupils) I am planning to do lino printing...

NZ print-makers (range of print-making techniques):
Ben Reid            Michel Tuffery            Philippa Bentley   

Peter Lendvai                Minu            Vanessa Edwards

Susan Haywood Smith - beautiful NZ birds and motifs, 2-3 colours

                                                   Steev Peyroux - Dunedin peninsula

This British artist shares his experiences of using lino to create prints...

And this slideshow shows how another art teacher creates lino prints...
Marian Johansen-Ellis
I really like this idea on the left (found on Pinterest) as fishing is a big recreational activity in Southland - this artwork links well to the TED video below that explains about the history and method of Japanese Gyotaku (fish printing)...

and I think I might try doing it on paper - pupils can use their own fish design as the basis of their picture and then borrow pieces of other pupils' designs to fill in the gaps...

and maybe also try putting the design onto hessian or calico to make a wall hanging as seen in this Blick art lesson...

This video is a slideshow of a real fish being prepared and printed...

And I think we might also try some 'haunted houses' - printing them on four different coloured papers to create an Andy Warhol style of picture (as seen on this wonderful art blog) and/or print on old book pages...these would be great poem or story-motivators I'm sure!
Houses on book paper
Haunted house

19 Jul 2014

Science Fair preparations

Information for the Southland Science Fair - held in mid-late August each year.

Introductory activities: maybe use to get pupils thinking about scientific process:

With the Sci Fair being held in Week 5, it means we only have four weeks to carry out our investigations and write them up for display and interviews with the judges.

I plan to introduce scientific process in Week One, pupils to then choose their investigation, materials gathered for the start of Week 2 - with on-going record keeping for Weeks 2-4 and the final write up happening at the start of Week 5. So I have looked for quick investigations where results should be showing in the time-frame - I have also selected ideas that flow on nicely from our Term 2 inquiry about our solar system, as well as any that could be related to the Science Fair special theme of 'Living in a Cooling World'...

Pupils will work in groups of 2 or 3 and can choose from any of the ideas below (which are from Science Buddies which has a huge range of fantastic investigation ideas):
  1. Is It Getting Hot in Here? - temperature/greenhouse gases - Ben and Jonas
  2. How Salty Does the Sea Have to Be? - floating an egg  Jennifer and Caity
  3. Is the Soup Ready? - measure the amount of water dried beans can absorb
  4. Shaking for Butter - which temperature works best?  Nikka and Anthony #1
  5. Mag-nificent Breakfast Cereals - how much iron is in your cereal?  Coebie and Damien
  6. How Greasy Are Your Chips? - measuring the fat content of potato chips
  7. Bigger is Better - how much baking powder do muffins need?  Kim and BJ
  8. Growing, Growing, Gone! - the use of nitrogen fertilizers on plants   Nikka and Anthony #2
  9. Radiant Radish Seeds - how much heat can a seed take?
  10. Which Way Up? - how does gravity affect plant root growth?
  11. Do Plants Need Soil? - a simply hydroponics investigation
  12. Home Sweet Biome - which environment is best for plants?  Dylan and Brayden
  13. Recycling Grey Water - do the plants like it?  Brock and JM
  14. All Packed Up - how does packaging affect the storage of fruit?
  15. Can House Colour Reduce Energy Bills? - how colour attracts heat Keegan and Logan 
  16. Cold Room - make your own solar air heater  Lisa and Richard
  17. Roof-top Gardens - do they help keep your house warm?
  18. Colour My World - how do different colours of light affect plant growth?  Maria and Lane
  19. Breathe Out - how does increased levels of carbon dioxide affect plant growth?
  20. Feed Me - how do different fertilizers affect plant growth?
** background info can be found via the link on the Inquiry page of our classroom blog - scroll down to see the Science Fair heading and select the links for the appropriate investigation/theme!

18 Jul 2014

HEALTH - Firewise - Fire safety practices

For the first week of Term Three our school health safety focus is Firewise - very important with so many homes using fireplaces at this time of the year!

The NZ Fire Service Firewise programme is aimed mainly at Years 1-2 but the resources can be adapted for older pupils, with a DVD available for Years 7-8 (and some parts can be used with Yr 5-6 with careful consideration).

With my Yr 6 pupils our focus will be on revising the basics about fire safety eg keep matches out of reach, the heater-metre rule, don't play near barbecues or fires; with the main focus being on Get Down...Get Low...Get Out Fast! (and Stay Out) and having an at-home escape plan and safe family meeting place.

For our literacy sessions this week, I plan to pair the pupils up to research and present one aspect of fire safety advice, using the Firewise booklets that the Fire Service has sent us (again, these are aimed at younger pupils but my older pupils will benefit too from having the messages reinforced). We will set a criteria together first so pupils have clear guidelines of what to share.

Pupils will create a presentation of their choice on the ipad to share on their blogs and on our class blog.

INQUIRY - Technology Production and Process

Term Three 2014 - TECHNOLOGY: 


Inquiry Question: MADE IN NZ!
How do we get ........?........ 
and why is it important 
to my life?

Key Understandings:
·         Technology is a man-made process.
·         Technology takes something that is natural and processes it into a product.
·         Technology makes life easier and provides more choice.
·         Technology provides greater convenience for daily living or job performance.

Core Knowledge:
·         Something natural becomes processed as soon as an aspect of it is changed by humans.
·         Processed items often don’t look like they originally were.
·         Some products are highly-processed, others are lightly processed.
·         The process of production can be shown by a flow-chart.
·         Technology involves inputs, outputs and controls.

Key Competency:

Key Strategy/Skill:

Key Value: Innovation

Focus: for pupils to create their own flow-chart (using Explain Everything app) of the production process of a product that is important in their life (which could be one of the products we investigate as a class, or a product that the pupil has chosen to investigate for themselves).

Assessment: (Level Three): 
Knowledge: Identify the steps and use appropriate language
to explain the process when producing a product.
Skill: Reflecting: Discusses and analyses, in discussions and
reflection logs, what he/she has learnt
and why it is important.

As a schol we share the same inquiry objectives but each teacher has flexibility to choose their own context to follow this, according to the needs and interests of the pupils in their class.

I have given the inquiry a ' Made in NZ!' focus to get the children to look at and appreciate the innovation that has occurred in our very own country where we as a people are known for our 'number 8 wire' thinking!

I intend to start the inquiry with a whole class investigation into Redband gumboots - almost every rural household in NZ will have at least one pair, if not multiple pairs of Redbands - a true Kiwi icon!

 (Gumboots = 'Wellingtons' in some countries)

The Redband website has a plethora of fantastic information about the history of the brand, and the manufacturing of the product!

It is a familiar product for my pupils and has a full and interesting production process, beginning with the harvest of the rubber and ending with the promotion of the product. I think they will enjoy finding how it all happens...

fibreglass innovations
After working as a class on the gumboots, I intend to take the children a little wider in their thinking by investigating the production and processes involved in a very modern product...fibreglass.

Local Invercargill firm Fibreglass Innovations makes a huge range of products with fibreglass, from lining swimming pools, to car parts, boats, all manner of items! They really  - I am hoping to make a visit there to see and discuss the process...

I might try to combine the trip with a visit to a clothing manufacturer - I have discovered Stormline Gear --NZ is an Invercargill-based firm that produces another product that will be familiar to many of the farming pupils.

Here is the video the company has made to share some insights into their products. I think it will be good for the pupils to view to learn about why materials have been chosen and how the product has been adapted to suit different purposes.


14 Jul 2014

abc - Alphabet Book Challenge

alphabet book challenge!

For Term Three I will engage my Year Six pupils in a reading challenge - this year it has an alphabet theme (aiming to fill in each letter of the alphabet with either a title or author or subject of a book they have read).

I have made this booklet on Google Drive and will print it out for the pupils' home learning books so they can keep a record of their reading.
Craft Sites for Kids Clip Art
I don't expect all of the pupils to read 26 different books or magazines but there will be a few that can manage it! Prizes will be given when a pupil completes three, eight, or fifteen items read, as well as a SUPER prize for those who can get to 26 (in just the ten weeks of term!)

8 Jul 2014

Updating the pupils' mihi (personal introductions in te reo Maori)

I am updating my learning partnership book (homework books) folder and thought it would be a good chance to review the pupil mihimihi which they use when they introduce themselves at the start of our weekly celebration time. Time for a bit of research as I have about three different versions in my folder, which all have slightly different spellings or words...

Looking at the Korero Maori website I found this advice...

Mihimihi are introductory speeches which take place at the beginning of a gathering after the more formal pōwhiri. Mihimihi are generally in te reo Māori and can be given by females and males.
Mihimihi establish links with other people present. Mihimihi involve individuals standing to introduce themselves by sharing their whakapapa (genealogy, ancestral ties) and other relevant information. It is important for Māori to know and to share their whakapapa - to know one’s whakapapa is to know one’s identity.
Mihimihi can vary in length depending on the reason for the gathering, how well the individuals at the hui know each other and their links to one another.
A person will usually identify specific geographical features associated with their tribal area including their maunga (mountain), awa (river) and moana (sea). They may also identify their waka (ancestral canoe), hapū (sub tribe), iwi (tribe), marae and an eponymous ancestor. This information is considered more important than the individual’s own name which may be the last piece of information given in mihimihi.
The website gives an example of a typical mihimihi - only a couple of my pupils this year have Maori ancestry but they would be most welcome to use the more relevant waka, hapu, rangatira and marae references if they wish to.

Also consulting the Ministry of Education teacher book "He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora" I have taken the website and book spellings as 'law' and I have created this mihi for our pupils to use in their learning partnership books to practise at home, based on the model they have previously been using, as well as this version for them to personalise with illustrations for their classroom book:

MY MIHIMIHI – a simple version for beginners…

Tēnā koutou!

(optional)  Ko _________________ te waka.          (ancestral canoe)

Ko _________________ te maunga.                       (mountain)
Ko _________________ te awa.                             (river)
Ko _________________ te iwi.                               (tribe/family name)
Ko _________________ taku matua.                       (father)
Ko _________________ taku whaea.                      (mother)
Ko _________________ au.                                   (my name)

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa!

3 Jul 2014