With the introduction of the digital curriculum, there has been a lot of talk with the word 'coding'. Many teachers think this is all the digital curriculum is talking about, and that it involves a device or programs such as scratch or minecraft. Yes, these are part of it. But students need to understand the talk or terminology being used with these and what exactly computational thinking is.
This set my frame of mind for going into my CRT teaching this term. Sure its job to teach digital fluency and competency and complete coding as part of computational thinking. But chucking devices in their face and expecting them to code problems and algorithms without knowing the language, well that won't help.
So my first lesson began with hearing these terms and beginning to use them in their language. We then moved onto a very basic computational thinking problem using the key words which progressed to them creating their own problems and algorithms for each other. They were only using google docs to make their problem and share it with me once finished. The creativity and language coming from this activity was more than you could have asked for. As a beginner task, this allowed those children who have never 'coded' the opportunity to do it without being pressured using an app, and they could do it in a safe way.
Here is my example I showed them and some of the completed ones my students made! Just awesome the children having fun and learning without the pressure of using a new app!
We had buddy time on Friday and decided to do something a little different. We usually do basic fact testing, spelling words and reading, then move to the bike track.
Mrs Lees (their teacher) and I thought lets do something new, and works on the skills they learnt in Term 1 with me in CRT time. We adapted a collaborative Google slide template from the book 'Google Apps for Littles' by Christine Pinto and Alice Keeler, pushed it out through Google classroom and found enough devices for each buddy to have one.
I modelled how they can do it with the teacher example we created on the TV and then let them go. It was amazing watching them work together and having some of my students use devices they wouldn't usually.
Click on the picture to go to our teacher example!
Here are some of the children working on them in class, and some of the work they completed! They look amazing, and were shared with their families on Seesaw once they had finished!
Google! Predominately for older children right?
I got my class of 5 and 6 year olds using is in maths! And it was so much fun. They loved being able to use computers and learn new skills. They could even remember the WALHT's for the lesson thats how engaged they were.
The children got to enter their vote on their devices, which then transformed into live data on our TV. It showed which ice-cream was the favourite, creating two graphs. We then spent lots of time talking about what the graphs represented and meant and the process in getting the information into the TV. They thought it was just magical!
Yes for my students, these was at a substitutional level on the SAMR model. But the engagement and interest in what they were asking, questionning and forming opinion/ideas about what we were doing was more than any other lesson I could have done in statistics.
The google sheet template was from the book Google Apps for Littles by Christine Pinto and Alice Keeler. Get the book here.
Check out this Tech Tip - all about Google Classroom! So many benefits and ways it can be used in your classroom to make your life easier!
Find the pdf here.
The Digital Technologies Curriculum was introduced to help all learners in New Zealand become digitally capable students. By 2020 it is expected that all learners were learning parts of this new curriculum and were becoming more confident and competent digital users.
With my role as ICT Lead Teacher, I was talking to teachers in my team who really had no idea what this meant for their students or how to go about it. They saw lots of hard vocabulary and thought it was simply about coding. The purpose of this slideshow was to help my teachers in my team understand the information being shared in this curriculum and examples of how to use it within their classroom practice.
If you would like access to the slideshow and resources that goes along with it, please click here >> Introduction to computational thinking Year 0-2.
Click on the image below to watch my youtube video explaining how it works.
Did you know google has this amazing tool called VOICE TYPING which is built into google docs and google slides. It allows you to voice type and dictate your ideas into your work, without having to type! You can even edit, format and add punctuation with your voice too! This tool has so many positive impacts for the classroom and yourself as a teacher!
Check out the Tech Tip to easily show you where to find the Voice Typing tool!
My passion at school is with using Seesaw. I came across it in 2016 and immediately saw the possibilities it offered for my class and school. We had been struggling with parent engagement and this learning journal app opened the door for new avenues with families and whanau. If you don't know what Seesaw is or how it works, check it out here at https://web.seesaw.me/.
This year, we have moved into our second year of using it school wide. I personally feel my teachers have learnt a lot since implementing Seesaw and are becoming more competent users. For my strategic plan with ICT this year, I came up with an idea for Seesaw Week. This would involve 5 small challenges that students can complete and be awarded with a badge. This badge could be physical (printed out) or digital and be awarded upon completing the Seesaw challenge of the day.
Seesaw Week's 5 challenges for 2018:
Monday = Use the draw feature
Use the draw feature to summarise a picture of something you have done today.
Tuesday = Use the note template to fill in the answers to these questions with emojis:
What is your name
How old are you
What is your favourite food
What is your favourite animal
What is your favourite colour
Choose your favourite emoji
Wednesday = App smash
Use a different app on your device to complete an aspect of your work (reading, writing or maths) and share it on Seesaw
Use the screenshot feature or app smash it through your app!
Thursday = Write a comment on a friends work
Use the voice comment or text comment to write a constructive feedback on their work.
I like your….
This is great because…
I love the way….
Wow! Your work is….
How did you….
Friday = Share your wow work
Use the photo or video to take a picture or video talking about your wow work and why you are proud of it
This is my wow work because….
If you would like access to the Seesaw Week plan my school will be using please click here to make a copy for yourself or view the activities >> Seesaw Week 2018
If you have not heard of Solvemoji I'm not sure where you have been hiding.
Solvemoji is a fantastic website that creates maths puzzles and challenges for students to complete. There are different levels for students to work on, with a new addition for juniors!
The puzzles are easy to complete with children working out the numbers which represent the different pictures, and what the ? represents. They are colour coded based on difficulty level and get increasingly harder as they progress. The offer addition, subtraction, multiplication and division problems. The puzzles are accessible on their website https://www.solvemoji.com/ and you can even sign up to complete them online and join the leaderboard with your results!
For my teachers at school, I downloaded a few from each level and combined them into a slideshow for easy access. These could be used as class warm ups, group activities or independent work. If you would like access to the slideshow please click here >> Solvemoji - Juniors slideshow and you can make your own copy of the slides or download for your needs.
Did you know google has this amazing tool called EXPLORE which is built into your google apps. It allows you to search the web, images or your drive for information relevant to your activity, but without having to tab switch! So handy for your students!
Here is a Tech Tip to easily show you where to find the Explore tool!
Who doesn't love Bitmoji's?? They are a great picture representation to add to your work that represent your feelings or what is happening. They are easy to use, and can be added into your work. Bitmoji's can be copy and pasted into your chosen document, or drag and dropped in.
Here is a Tech Tip to easily explain how Bitmoji's work!
Mrs Priestley ICT blog is a place to read, download and view ideas!