Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Theory into practice

Sometimes you attend an NIDay and see something you think would be a good thing to try in your class but when you get the children for the next day, your notes may not make as much sense as they seemed to at the time or something else comes up.

Today, Mrs. Chambers decided to have her class use the software she learned about yesterday morning and so I was pleased to help get things going and then monitor her work with the students. It was a success... one that will be repeated many times over the coming year.

One thing I try to stress with teachers, specially when dealing with technology, is to allow the students to explore at first. And, don't try and answer all the questions yourself, specially when the software is new to you, too. And so today, after Mrs. Chambers I spent a bit of time getting the children started, the students explored the tools. When they asked a question about a tool, they were encouraged to try it out and see what happened.

Very soon the students were helping their neighbours with things and showing what they were doing. The students today were engaged and the initial questions soon disappeared as students worked to figure things out and share ideas.

Kidspiration is a very good piece of software for literacy, numeracy, social studies, science and art. It is recommended for Kindergarten to Grade 5 and could be used by older students with learning needs. I did post the link to the website which talks about the software yesterday and it is available for Mac or Windows. You can click on the Kidspiration image to download a trial version for Mac or Windows. ---->

I spent some time with Ms. Andersen and the Grade 7's this afternoon talking about some of my ideas and brainstorming some of their ideas for what might be leadership opportunities in the school.

Ms. Andersen and I have talked about this before and we agree that this is definitely one class of students who could accept the challenge and the discussion with them was full of good ideas.

Charmaine took notes and the board had many more ideas when we were finished for the day. One of the key tasks now is for the students to consider all the opportunities, think about their likes and dislikes and put that together with the skills they believe they have to develop a resume for Ms. Andersen to review. Some of the things we will start this week and others will be in the new year.

Good stuff!

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