SLAV Connects is a blog by the School Libraries Association of Victoria (SLAV), formerly named Bright Ideas when a collaboration between SLAV and the State Library of Victoria (SLV). Its aim is to share news from the Association and to encourage teacher librarians, librarians, school library staff, educators and all interested persons to actively engage with the school libraries, to share tools and experiences; to network on a global scale; and to embrace dynamic teaching and learning opportunities.
While the main foci of the unit are literacy and numeracy, Les and Judith hope other skills will come out of the program. The program will begin in term 1, 2010. Les and Judith explain:
Introducing literacy and numeracy at senior years is always difficult. It always needs to be embedded into types of work the students find interesting and what better way to get the students’ attention by using Guitar Hero as a starting point.
Upon forming their ‘bands’, students will be blogging about imagined tours, CD releases, booking and travelling to venues around the world and so on. Numeracy skills come into play when deciding who much to pay roadies, how much tickets will cost and how the money will be split between the band. Students will need to be aware of their audience when blogging and develop a convincing history of their band.
Other skills such as cooperation and collaboration, problem solving, researching and investigating, mapping and creativity. Students will also be learning how to use web 2.0 tools such as Big Huge Labs to create posters, tickets and CD covers. Voki or other sites will be used to develop avatars and students may film their ‘concerts’ to upload to teachertube.
We hope that this unit of work will grab the students’ imagination and keep them actively involved for the entire time.
(With thanks to staff at Perth and Kinross Schools in Scotland for the seed that developed into this wiki.)
Hopefully the students enjoy their numeracy and literacy lessons! It will be interesting to hear how it all goes.
Are you looking for a totally safe way to use YouTube and other videos with your students but worried about them accessing stuff that’s inappropriate? Vodspot can help.
Once you sign up to Vodspot, you can create your own video channel and drag and drop videos from YouTube, TeacherTube and many other sites to your channel. Then give your students your Vodspot channel address or even better, install a widget and link your selected Vodspot videos from your blog or wiki. Students will then only access the videos you have selected for them.
Student can add comments about their favourite videos and teachers are able to access statistics to see which are the most watched videos. Quite a useful tool for anyone who uses or is thinking about using the incredible video resources that are freely available on the internet.
Margo Edgar of Pascoe Vale Primary School has worked on creating e-books with year five and year six this term. The project was to create photo stories of the solar system, which are now accessible through Margo’s wiki.
Margo Edgar's wiki
Margo explains the process the students went through. ‘The students were given the following instructions:
Your task is to collaborate with your group to create a presentation that communicates your understanding and explains a process that happens in our Solar System, or the answer to a question about our Solar System.
They could be created using Photostory (free download from Microsoft), Voicethread or other options as negotiated. (All but one group chose to use Photostory).
‘Presentations had to include:
Drawings and/or diagrams
Drawings needed to sequentially show the process that was being explained
‘Written text that follows an explanation text structure (this had been taught previously). They were expected to include an introduction, body sections that followed a logical sequence and explained step by step and a conclusion.’
Margo continues, ‘The students were expected to research their chosen topic (process/question) and then used Inspiration to flow chart the plan for their text (this was following on from previous work we had completed on planning and writing texts).
‘Once they completed their drawings the students scanned or photographed them, then imported them into the groups chosen program and added their text to create the final product. Each group was given the task of evaluating another group’s completed product and reporting back to the class on their evaluation.’ All presentations were then uploaded to TeacherTube for sharing with the wider world.
‘Whilst I have not specifically completed the SLAV Web 2.0 course – I have trained myself in the use of a lot of Web 2.0 tools over the last few years and explored ways to use them in the classroom.’
Thank you to Margo for not only sharing her success with using Photostory and TeacherTube, but for sharing her wiki as well. From the finished products, it is evident that students found the task engaging. Well done Margo.