Monday, 25 May 2015

Digital Bytes May 25, 2015

This week's Digital Bytes has the following articles: 21 Ways to use photography and images in your classroom, Top 6 sites for free videos, photos, and audio, and managing your computer's linked Google Drive folder.

Monday, 18 May 2015

Digital Bytes 18th May

In this week's Digital Bytes, we learn why "How much screen time?" is the wrong question, how coding can help us learn how to learn, and how playing video games for 10 minutes a day can improve maths scores.

Monday, 11 May 2015

Digital Bytes May 11, 2015

In this week's Digital Bytes, have a look at some videos that will help inspire you and your students, explore how to use Pinterest to support curating characters in your writing and check out Buffer, a tool to add text to an image for your tweets.

Friday, 8 May 2015

iMovie with G1 students

Filming the X for "Don't do this!"
Our Grade 1 students were involved in a service unit recently, and one group of students decided to take action by creating a movie about how to play safely in the playground. I was invited to be a mentor to them as they went about planning, filming and editing the movie.

Their teacher, Ms Dakkouri, allowed me some time to teach the whole class some of the basics of filming. We explored:
  • Keeping the iPad steady
  • Not filming into the light (or a silhouette effect would occur)
  • Using different camera angles (such as worm's eye view and bird's eye view) to keep the video interesting.

Filming and acting in the playground.
Firstly, I met with the movie group to plan their message, where I acted as scribe. They had a list of dos and don'ts they wanted to communicate to their audience. We mapped out where we might film each scenario, and who would take the role of filming/acting/extras for each section.

Filming became our next priority. With the help of a Justand, the students were able to keep the iPad steady as they recorded. They loved shouting, "Action!" to indicate the start of filming. Several takes were needed in some instances to get just the right shot. 
Collaboratively editing

The students began putting the clips in iMovie, however soon realised they wanted to include a sign like a cross to appear on the clips for what not to do, and a tick for the clips showing what you should do. I had not planned on teaching the students about picture-in-picture, however it was exactly the tool they needed, so I showed them how.

Adding the tick using picture-in-picture
Collaboratively, the students took turns to put the clips in, add the picture-in-picture (with frequent "helpful" reminders to those who forgot how), and include a title. One student observed that it would be, "way cooler," if we could slow down the clip about the sand being thrown, so that provided another opportunity to show them how to do that. They were gobsmacked! It was wonderful to see them all so excited and engaged.

Finally we finished! They were thrilled to show their teacher, who promised to share the movie in assembly with the whole of the early years students.

What I liked most about this project was that it evolved out of a student inquiry, and that the concepts of film-making were taught as needed, for just-in-time learning. Students were receptive to teaching points because it was real world learning, and that's what has the most impact on understanding. I hope you enjoy watching our finished iMovie below!

Monday, 4 May 2015

Digital Bytes 4th May 2015

Happy Star Wars Day! For this week's Digital Bytes, we feature Essentials for ePortfolios, an article from Scholastic on Twitter for Teachers, and 10 Techie Things to Try for those looking for a bit of inspiration. Enjoy!