Friday, May 31, 2013

5th Grade Creative Writers

The 5th graders in Mrs. Dachelet's classes have taken their writing to a new, creative level by publishing their stories using Storybird.  After learning how children's books are written and structured, and viewing several examples, they wrote stories of their own and used Storybird's publishing tools to share professional-looking projects with the world.  Many of the students used the collaborate feature to write and edit stories together.  View some of our students' highly creative stories below.

Animoto Book Trailers

To culminate their group readings of various novels related to the themes found in Lois Lowry's The Giver, 8th graders in Mrs. Koshollek's Language Arts classes created Animoto book trailers.  Below are some examples of their work.  They certainly make me more interested in reading these titles.

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

 Pretties by Scott Westerfeld

Behind the Bedroom Wall by Laura E. Williams

Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli

Bar Code Tattoo by Suzanne Weyn

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Indian in the Cupboard Character Scrapbooks

To reinforce their understanding of the characters and events from the the book The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks, 5th graders in Mr. Wegner's class created character scrapbooks using Biteslide.  Their scrapbooks had to portray events that occurred throughout the story from the point-of-view of a chosen character.  View a few of our students' creative examples below.

Greek Mythology Trivia Challenge Skype

Our 7th graders' knowledge of Greek Mythology was put to the test today when they connected with a group of 6th graders in Houston, TX, to challenge one another to a Greek Mythology trivia competition. Students at each school prepared this past quarter by learning about the different Greek gods and goddesses and reading various stories associated with each. Then, each class prepared questions to ask one another to determine who is the ultimate Greek Mythology trivia champion. Before the friendly competition began, students warmed up to one another by introducing themselves. They shared information about their respective cities and asked one another questions about everything from favorite foods to music. (Houston seems to have many One Direction fans as well!)

Next, it was time to get serious.  Each school assigned a team captain to answer all of the questions on behalf of the class.  We did rock, paper, scissors to determine who would go first. 

Students from each school took turns asking questions.  Questions were mostly open-ended, but multiple choice was offered when additional help was needed.

Although we kept score throughout the competition, what ultimately mattered was the experience.  Students had the chance to meet a new group of kids from somewhere else in the country and discover that kids from another part of the US are just like them in many different ways.   In addition, we proved that New London students are awesome learners who really understand and know their Greek Mythology. Who was the ultimate victor in this challenge?  I think that we could agree that both schools were winners. 

Friday, May 24, 2013

Our Year in Review

It's hard to believe that another year is almost over.  We have worked hard and done some very exciting things!  It has been awesome to watch students learn and grow and create new knowledge using 21st century tools.

Below is a video that highlights a few of the ways in which we have worked with students this year.  This video was originally created as a way to highlight our program to parents and community members who will be visiting our school during our student showcase on May 30, but I thought that it was also a great tool to share with the world to demonstrate how our library serves students and teachers in the 21st century.  We are more than just a place to check-out books.  We teach the essential research and technology skills to ensure student success in today's connected world.

Thanks for another great year!

Monday, May 20, 2013

How does technology affect us: a comparison with our Estonia partners

We have continued our partnership with our Estonia friends to discuss technology and how it affects our lives. We used the website Mindmeister to create individual mindmaps sharing our thoughts on how technology impacts different aspects of our lives.

 New London students

Estonia Students
Click here to view their mindmap.

Next, students compared and contrasted their mindmaps through our collaborative Edmodo group.

What did we learn?  The biggest lesson students learned was that across oceans and countries, we have much in common when it comes to how technology affects our lives!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Look no further for your next vacation inspiration!

Where would you like to go on your next vacation? Let our 5th grade tour guides help you with your decision. Each student selected his or her dream vacation spot. Next, they used what they learned about persuasion to create a video using the free online video editor, We Video, that convinces others to go to their destinations of choice.

Want to get some inspiration for your next vacation?  Watch their videos below.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Learn about Digital Citizenship from our 5th Grade Stars!

Fifth graders in Mrs. Young's Integrated Technology classes want to teach you something about digital citizenship and online safety.  They have produced, directed, and starred in their very own public service announcements to share what they have learned.  Using WeVideo, our first-time video creators were able to easily edit their productions by mixing in text, music, and animations.  Want to learn more about digital citizenship and online safety?  Watch their videos below.