Monthly Archives: November 2014

Flipgrid for Student Reflection

I became aware of the digital tool, Flipgrid ( from reading Andy Plemmon’s blog (  He uses this digital tool regularly and I decided to take the plunge and figure out how it worked.  I just needed a way to utilize this digital tool and create an opportunity for students to have something to say. I downloaded the app to an iPad and also played with it in on a laptop.

Students reading book

Students reviewing the book, Planting the Trees of Kenya: the Story of Wangari Maathai

Wangari Maathai & the Enviroment

The 3rd grade students had been studying natural resources, conservation of resources, and the effects of humans on the environment. I read the books, Planting the Trees of Kenya: The Story of Wangari Maathai, by Claire Nivola and Mama Mita and the Trees of Kenya by Donna Jo Napoli.  On a large screen I displayed an article from World Book about Maathai and we read this together.

Reflection, IB PYP Attitudes & Profiles, IB Concept Questions

After that I directed the students to reflect on what they had learned in class about natural resources and the environment in light of what we read in the book and the encyclopedia article.  I helped them make a few connections with other things they had learned recently.  I gave them each an index card and asked them to write a few sentences.  The teachers helped me to encourage the students to use the words of the profiles and attitudes and also to cite evidence from the texts.


Students made several connections with what they had been learning in science, social studies and our recent International Week activities.  One class had researched Pakistan and learned about Malala Yousafzai, a recent Nobel Peace Prize, as had Maathai.  Other classes made the connection with other Nobel Peace Prize winners they had heard of including Martin Luther King, Jr. and Jimmy Carter.  Students then reflected on all this information and wrote about Maathai, using the IB profiles and attitudes and the concept questions.  The teachers and I helped them rewrite or edit if necessary and then they were ready to record their writing.


The students rehearsed their response and then recorded their videos using Flipgrid.  The video quality was of a better quality using a laptop and Logictech camera, but I started encountering glitches, so I switched to the iPad.  The students did a great job recording.

Student recording his video using Flipgrid on the iPad.

Student recording his video using Flipgrid on the iPad.










Check out our Flipgrid,


Here are some of the curriculum standards we covered in the lesson and activity in the library!

Georgia Science Standards-3rd grade

S3L2. Students will recognize the effects of pollution and humans on the environment.

  1. Explain the effects of pollution (such as littering) to the habitats of plants and animals.
  2. Identify ways to protect the environment.
  • Conservation of resources

Common Core ELA 3rd grade standards

ELACC3RI1: Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers

ELACC3RI2: Determine the main idea of a text; recount the key details and explain how they support the main idea.

ELACC3W8: Recall information from experience or gather information from print and digital sources;


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