Saturday, December 12, 2015

Shutter + Christmas Cards

A little shutter made its way into our Christmas decor this year! 


This faithful little shutter sat un-painted and hidden for the past two years because I couldn't figure out what to do with it.  I even moved it into our new house hoping inspiration would strike one day. A can of red spray paint and glitter blast brought this bland shutter to life. Now it's home to Christmas cards from family and friends. 

We have the perfect spot for the shutter(s) on our landing. I was so excited to keep cards on display showing off cute pictures of family and friends.

Shutter number one is filling up! It's almost time to bust out the second shutter.

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Watch Out Discovery Channel! We're Space Experts!

Let me start by saying, this was one of those projects where I wasn't really sure what was going to happen. I knew what standards I was teaching and gave each of my students a solid rubric - but from there I was anxious to see the direction it went. I can honestly say I learned a valuable lesson about trust and being willing to try - even when you think it may be too much to handle.  I was so amazed by what the students created together. It was a swift reminder that I don't always have to be in control of every little detail. Hop over to our YouTube channel to see what I mean. 

Now, let's get down to business. Who can get me in touch with Discovery Channel so we can start broadcasting our knowledge of the universe? Email me. :)

This project was broken into three different phases. Overall, it took us about 5 days total (or five class periods of 50-min each). The last day was more of a catch up/clean up/submit to YouTube. 

First, we broke out to in expert groups based on interest. Students were able to choose if they wanted to research the Sun, Moon, or Earth. On Google Classroom, I provided a "research guide" with specific questions about the Sun, Moon, or Earth (depending on their topic of research). I tailored the questions to our specific standards to ensure students were researching the appropriate facts. Plus, I provided specific links because I didn't want my students to get lost in the world wide web - it can happen you know!

The next step was to create informative movie clips about their respective topic. You can view those on Google Drive here. This is where the fun began! Students collaborated in their expert groups with a partner to develop a script for their movie clip. They were informed their movie clip would be used in a collaborative iMovie in the following days. In our school Maker Space, we have a green screen available - so we decided to do some filming in outer space thanks to the DoInk app!

Once partners had filmed a movie clip, they AirDropped it to their partner. The final step of the project was to form a collaborative group with one Moon expert, one Sun expert, and one Earth expert. From there, students put all of their movie clips together and began the editing process. Students had access to their rubric/checklist via Google Docs at all times. Prior to each class, we would review the rubric to remind students of what was expected for the video. You can check out the rubric here

Today, students were quite giddy when they heard their videos were officially published to YouTube (with parent permission!).  They were so excited to go home and subscribe to our classroom YouTube Channel. 

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