A wiki suggesting alternative ways to respond to texts has been developed by Preston Girls’ Secondary College.
The idea behind the wiki is to show both students and teachers creative ways to respond to texts. The wiki includes examples of how students have responded via tools such as:
A big thank you to @thenerdyteacher Nick Provenzano for sharing his students’ Prezis on The Great Gatsby. You can view more student responses (including YouTube clips) on his excellent blog.
Hopefully students will be excited to show teachers and parents their understanding of texts through creating and publishing presentations. Schools could use the presentations on their websites and/or parent information night.
In a previous post about Pascoe Vale Primary School students creating e-books, teacher Margo Edgar mentioned getting students to create their e-books using PhotoStory or VoiceThread.
- Group conversations around images, documents and videos
VoiceThread is an excellent Web 2.0 resource that enables users to create text, add videos and images and then record an audio overlay. Microphones and phones can be used to record audio. Users can comment on other people’s VoiceThread uploads, so there can be collaboration with other students and teachers if you wish.
VoiceThread is such an amazing and powerful tool, it is probably better to experience it for yourself, so have a look at this screencast that shows exactly how VoiceThread works: VoiceThread screencast.
There is also an excellent wiki that shows examples of VoiceThread projects in classrooms and school libraries. So creating digital storytelling and e-books is now much easier, both for students and teachers. Students should find e-books lots of fun to produce and share using VoiceThread!
VoiceThread could also be used for online professional development or online learning. Staff meetings or staff PD could be presented using VoiceThread and then saved for later access for people who were absent, or who want to revisit the presentation.
Some lessons could be uploaded to VoiceThread for students who are ill or absent and for sharing with other classes or schools. Distance education could take advantage of VoiceThread’s free accounts as well. Thanks to Margo Edgar at Pascoe Vale Primary School for the introduction to VoiceThread.
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.