Submitted by Mary Bartolini
2 50-minute periods (three if the option to use technology is selected since this would require some training regarding the use of the Kid Pix software)
- Paper, pencils, crayons, markers.
- Questions chart ( attachment 1)
- Rubric chart (attachment 2)
Students will work in pairs and will create a non-fiction book (question and answer book) about a specific representation of water. The teacher gives students a picture with a representation of water. Then the teacher models how to create a book based on different questions about their pictures (see handouts). The format of the book will be writing the question on the top of the page and the answer on the bottom of the page. The middle could be used to illustrate the book. The teacher also needs to talk about the rubric and checklist (see handouts) so students can understand what is expected of them.
Option using technology:
A similar project can be conducted with multimedia software such as Kid Pix which can be used by students to create multimedia books with texts, images, sounds, voice recording, and so on. The activity would be pretty similar to the paper and pencil one described above but with a few minor necessary revisions:
- Even though the software has been specifically designed for this age level, the students would still need to become familiar with the simple interface of the software as well as the many options that are available to them (use the graphics/images available in the software integrated gallery, import graphics/images, spell check, basic text formatting available, and so on). One session specifically targeted to students’ training in using the software might be necessary if it is the first time learners are exposed to it.
- Learners will need to be guided in their search for graphics/images. In a similar way as the paper and pencil activity where the teacher has previously selected and brought material in class for students to use to create their book, the teacher who selects the technological option will need to find appropriate online resources for students to use. We have provided you (in the Unit Overview) with a list of web sites which provide royalty free images and graphics that learners can use for their project. This list can be either given to learners in a Word document, in which case learners would simply need to Control+click on each web address (link) to have access to the pre-selected web sites, the web sites could also be included in the favorites folder of the Internet browser used, or included on a TrackStar web page. This activity might require a bit of training if students do not yet have any skills in using the Internet. There are three major skills this activity would target: a) extracting images from the web to use for their project (copying and pasting images selected images/graphics from the Internet), b) basic Internet navigation (going back, forward, recognizing and clicking on a web link), and c) using the Internet address window to enter a web address (optional).
- Students will need to be given the same guidelines as in the paper and pencil activity. The teacher could provide a model/example of what students are expected to do. The teacher could develop one Kid Pix project using a different though compatible topic and showcase it, highlighting important elements learners need to include.
The students will be given some time at the end of the unit to showcase their projects to the class. The projects will ideally be posted on the Internet to share with family members, school community, or others, and to serve as a model for future projects of this kind. Students complete a checklist as a self assessment and the teacher uses a rubric to assess student performance. If the technology option is used, students can also complete a checklist on their technology use. A checklist to assess technology use is more appropriate than a rubric for the age level of the learners that are targeted in this unit.