Saturdays at 10 - Technology in the Classroom

We met this morning in Old Main 214 to share ideas about technology in the classroom. There were so many wonderful ideas and projects shared, I barely know where to start. I guess at the beginning.

Jenn B. started off the festivities by sharing projects from her science classrooms. Her students filmed clips representing basic life processes and organelles in her Biology classroom, and made a film about the periodic table in her Chemistry classroom. Metabolism, heavy metals, homeostasis and many more came alive on screen as her students found different low tech ways to capture the essence of the scientific terms. They were a nice blend of student humor and creativity. Jenn is currently working on Chemistry Karaoke with her students, and we're all anxiously awaiting these Weird Al type parody videos.

Jenn ended her presentation with stories about her emerging use of her school's blog engine, as well as information about her students experience IM'ing scientists on National DNA Day (sorry Jenn...I may have missed the title...so email me and I'll fix that).

Keri Davis shared a Powerpoint project her students completed in conjunction with Witness, a free verse novel by Karen Hesse about racism in the 1920's. Her students created digital found poems using five words from the novel and five words from a modern song that helped illustrate one of the themes of her novel. The student project we watched was nothing short of amazing.

We then had a pretty good discussion of Powerpoint in the classroom. It was noted that Keri's students used the technology the way it was meant to be used; a multimodal and engaging digital storytelling tool. We further discussed the merits of the technology and Kristen Frawley made a good point when she surmised that an added benefit of Powerpoint is that students become literate in the talk of technology. Terms like rendering and formatting, etc. become ingrained in student thinking. One person had a question about good photography resources, and I mentioned Flickr. Here's a link to the Creative Common group. There are currenty 9035 pictures offered up for creative use. Just make sure to give proper credit. Also, if anyone wants to see third grade Joel, look for the kid in the top row with his tongue hanging out of his mouth.

Jon Federick was up next, and he shared films from his Mass Media and Production class. Jon shared very personal films that his students made; one, a short film that grew out of a piece of poetry about the death of a cousin, the other an inquiry driven documentary on the effects of family issues on today's teens. They were moving, honest, and inspiring. Jon also shared his observations about how he sees many students transform and evolve in his year long video class as his charges attempt to say something personal and meaningful with video.

Kristen Frawley was next to present, sharing a bevy of resources she has used in her Enrichment classes. Her students create podcasts about the goings on of East Elementary, some of which have been featured on WIVB. Kristen also shared one of her student's claymation film about an unfair race, which was downright amazing.

To end, Kristen shared this video from Youtube, which raises a lot of important points about technology in the classroom. We should have started the program with this. What a powerful statement.

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Unfortunately for me, I had to leave while Pat McCabe was presenting as I was overdue for my nephew's first communion party. I'm going to bug Suzanne for information on Pat and Amy's presentations so that I can share them via this blog. I also promised to share the videos that went along with my handouts, as I was unable to stick around.

Basically, I wanted to share a project my students completed in my AP Lit class. As I am somewhat beholden to an exam, I have to keep an eye on more traditional tasks. In order to accomplish this and also integrate video, I had my students interpret a passage on film and also write a more traditional, analytical essay. Here are the films:

The Queen is Dead

Jocasta's Advice to Oedipus

And here are the original handouts:

1 comment:

greg said...

Completely inspired by last Saturday's program i went ahead and work with poetry and powerpoint in my classroom this week...the results were amazing...Thanks Tech Team...you saved the day.