Category Archives: Information Literacy Instruction

Second Grade Writes “Never” Poems

Second grade students created poems for National Poetry Month using a template (https://writeshop.com/writing-a-never-poem)  for a “Never Poem” which emphasizes repetition and alliteration.  We discussed what poetry was and some of the characteristics of poems.  I modelled the writing using a white board and let the students help me think up words (all starting with the same consonant). Then we talked about adjectives and added adjectives to describe the nouns we had chosen.

Photos of never poems

Dictionary and Thesaurus Available

I had dictionaries and thesauri at the tables to help them find words if they were drawing a blank; this also served as a review for these reference sources.

Flipgrid for an Audience

One class had the chance to record themselves reading their poems on Flipgrid, but due to time restraints (state test prep, etc.) the others might not get to record.  I think it is important to give the students opportunities to record themselves.  It is a good learning experience and they love to see and hear themselves! flipgrid.com/3a42d1

screen capture of Flipgrid

 

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3rd Grade and Book Character Poems Celebrating National Poetry Month

While in graduate school working on my Specialist degree, I was introduced to a poem template for a book character.  I used it successfully last year during National Poetry Month and decided it was worth a repeat.  I selected picture books with strong characters and a strong plot that could be read easily by the 3rd grade students. Titles included: Where the Wild Things Are, Harry the Dirty Dog, The Paper Bag Princess, The Gingerbread Boy, The Three Billy Goats Gruff (and a few more).

The small group decided how they would read the book (take turns, have one reader, etc.) and after reading the book, they completed the template.

Movie and YouTube

I recorded all of the groups reading their poem using Windows Movie Maker to put together the clips and then uploaded the movie to YouTube.  I’ve completed 2 movies and have one more to go. Check out the completed ones:

Librarian recording students reading their poem in the studio.

I used one of our Flip cameras to record the students in our morning show studio.

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5th Grade Learns to Use Prezi

By this time of the school year, I have worked with the 5th grade classes on creating a Chatterpix and PowerPoint.  To add an additional tool in their digital tool belt, we worked on making Prezis.

When working with the students, I’m not really going for a perfect product.  Rather, I am hoping that they will be experienced enough with the tool, that they will be able to use it on their own.  I do look the creations over and have them edit for grammar, punctuation, etc.  But, if after the allotted time and the group is not completely finished, the project has to stay that way.

Unfortunately, students have to be 13 years old to sign up for their own account (and I haven’t been successful in getting teachers to sign up for their own accounts), so they have to use my account.  I will change my password after this project is over!

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Notice that the students are not using their Dell tablets, but the library computers to create their Prezis.  Way easier!

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Coordinated with Social Studies Unit of Inquiry

I designed a graphic organizer that reflected what the students were studying in their current Unit of Inquiry so as to build on the prior knowledge of the topic and to reinforce concepts they are learning in the classroom.  They were learning about the U.S. during the 1920’s and 1930’s.  I looked at the Georgia Performance Standards and based the topics on these standards:

SS5H4 The student will describe U.S. involvement in World War I and post-World War I America.

a. Explain how German attacks on U.S. shipping during the war in Europe (1914- 1917) ultimately led the U.S. to join the fight against Germany; include the sinking of the Lusitania and concerns over safety of U.S. ships, U.S. contributions to the war, and the impact of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. b. Describe the cultural developments and individual contributions in the 1920s of the Jazz Age (Louis Armstrong), the Harlem Renaissance (Langston Hughes), baseball (Babe Ruth), the automobile (Henry Ford), and the airplane (Charles Lindbergh).

SS5H5 The student will explain how the Great Depression and New Deal affected the lives of millions of Americans.

a. Discuss the Stock Market Crash of 1929, Herbert Hoover, Franklin Roosevelt, the Dust Bowl, and soup kitchens. b. Analyze the main features of the New Deal; include the significance of the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Works Progress Administration, and the Tennessee Valley Authority. c. Discuss important cultural elements of the 1930s; include Duke Ellington, Margaret Mitchell, and Jesse Owens.

Livebinders

I created a Livebinder to curate the websites for the students to use for their research.  They bookmark the website and it reduces the time needed to complete their research.  The do use their tablets for researching.

http://www.livebinders.com/play/play?id=2139444

Livebinder

Final Product

I did not have the students use their 1:1 devices (Dell ProVenue tablets) to create their Prezi as it is too difficult to see what you are doing on the small screen.  Fortunately I have 8 Dell All-in-One computers with large, touch screens! Check out one of their Prezis:

http://prezi.com/qqkie2tcvtyc/?utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share

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4th Grade and World Book Online Timelines

Last week I asked the 4th grade chair what skills that they might want me to cover over the next couple of weeks.  She mentioned that she needed the students to complete a timeline of events leading up to the Revolutionary War.  In the back of my mind I remembered something about timelines on World Book Online and when I checked there is a very easy to use timeline generator.

First Create Student Accounts in World Book Online

First I had to have each student create an individual account in World Book Online, which was easy but time consuming for 4th grade students.  This took about 15-20 minutes by the time everyone gets their tablets up and running, logged on, connected to the internet, keyboards plugged in, blah, blah, blah!  For 2 classes I went into the classroom and used the interactive board to demonstrate how to fill in the blanks and the students followed along.  I did it in the library for the other 2 classes and think it worked better in the classroom, partly because it is a smaller space and I could get around to help the students more easily.

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Searching for events in World Book.  Students used their Dell ProVenue tablets, with keyboards and mouses.

 

 

student using tablet to create timeline in World Book Online.

Searching and saving images to add to an event on the timeline.

Creating a Timeline Is Fun and Easy

After they had their accounts, I demonstrated how to use the World Book Timeline.  It is easy to search the encyclopedia’s content for events and add them to a timeline, but it also very easy to create your own event.  I showed them how to add images and edit any event.  They really enjoyed it and I think the previous experience they have gained throughout the year making PowerPoints and Prezis in the library (saving images, finding out how to ascertain the owner of the image’s rights, etc) paid off by increasing their skill in navigating this digital tool.

World Book Online Timeline is Versatile

This timeline generator is so versatile in that you can take advantage of the massive amount of data in the encyclopedia, but you can also use your own content to create timelines.  I showed them how to print the timelines, but I guess I’m a little disappointed that there is no way to share the timelines (sharing links, emailing links, etc.).  But, I understand as this tool is only available to subscribers and they need to protect their product.  I will definitely being sharing this to other grade levels (probably just 3rd and 5th grades).

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Second Grade and Library Catalog

Today I introduced the 2nd grade classes to the library’s Destiny catalog.  I did a quick overview and modeled looking up a picture book.  Then we proceeded to use their tablets (we are a 1:1 school) to look up the catalog and bookmark the website.

I have to have the students use their tablets as earlier this school year our technology department eliminated the generic student login (too dangerous to the system or something!?!?), which has meant a huge headache for the library media center.  Now when a  student wants to look up a book, they have to use their individual login to log onto one of my 8 computers.  If this is the first time they have logged onto that particular computer it will take about 2-3 minutes to complete that cycle.  That’s a long time to just look up one book!  Our technology department did create a catalog kiosk at one of my computers, but now you can only access the catalog or take an Accelerated Reader quiz on it, effectively eliminating it as a second circulation computer or any other use!  Well, that’s enough of that rant.

Sooooo, in order to teach a whole class and eliminate the time consuming task of having 2nd graders logging onto the library computers, I am having them bring their tablets each week while we do this instruction.  Of course this took up a lot of time initially, but now that the catalog is bookmarked we should be ready to go for the rest of the weeks instruction. One teacher, who is particularly on the ball, had already added the link to the catalog to her Portaportal site which students can easily access.  Wish they were all that well organized!

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After this initial foray into the catalog, some students just couldn’t wait for additional instruction and had to jump in and try it! They needed some assistance as I had only covered finding books in the E Fiction section, not the non-fiction or chapter book areas. It was rewarding to see them so excited and problem solving.

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Emerson couldn’t wait for further instruction so he enlisted the help of his teacher to locate a title.

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3rd Grade, Snowflake Bentley and Snowflakes

I am repeating this project for the third year with 3rd grade students. We start out reading the biography of Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin, illustrated by Marian Azarian and follow (the next week) with the students researching snow using atlases, dictionaries and encyclopedias (online). The third week we review the information they gathered about snow and go on to cutting out paper snowflakes.

Cutting Paper Snowflakes

The first time I did this activity with students I was amazed that not one student had ever cut out paper snow flakes.  I spent hours as a child cutting snowflakes out of white paper, pages from magazines, any kind of paper I could get my hands on.  So it is so much fun watching them unfold their snowflakes and almost universally gasp when they see their creation!

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Exploring Websites with Thinglink

I revised my Thinglink image and attempted to have the students use their tablets (we are a 1:1 device school).  https://www.thinglink.com/scene/479319938847211522captureI tried out the Thinglink on a tablet and the links all worked, so I had the first class  bring their tablets.  However, the best laid plans…only 2 out of 21 tablets displayed the website correctly! So, plan B was to use the 8 desktops in the library.  This meant the students had to share, but otherwise it was smooth.  I figured out that I could use Livebinders as I have used it successfully in the past; it’s just doesn’t look as cool as Thinglink!

http://www.livebinders.com/play/play?id=2164842

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Reflection Component

I designed a graphic organizer to guide the students as they used the Thinglink (or Livebinder) and explored the various websites.  I think it helped the students stay on task.  It also gave the students a way to think about what they were watching, reading or exploring.

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Students creating digital snowflakes! It’s very addictive.

 

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1st Grade and Jon Klassen

Shout out to Jennifer Reed who inspired me to do this activity.  Check out her blog post on Reederama- “ReedALOUD: The Many Hats of Jon Klassen”( https://goo.gl/HMzc4G).  She worked with 2nd grade students, but I decided to do this with 1st grade.  Our school is emphasizing writing across all grade levels and I was pretty sure the 1st grade students could do this.img_0670

Session One-This Is Not My Hat

Jennifer used a trifolded piece of paper, which I also did.  I had pencils and crayons on the table.  After reading This Is Not My Hat, I asked the students what they thought happened in the place “where the plants are big and tall and close together.”  I instructed them to write a sentence to describe what happened and illustrate it.

Students reflecting on what they thought happened in the place where the plants grow close.

Students reflecting on what they thought happened in the place where the plants grow close.

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Session Two-I Want My Hat Back

I have about 30 minutes with each class when they visit.  This allows me about 15-20 minutes max to do instruction and activity, so I decided to do one Klassen book each week.  In the book, I Want My Hat Back, we see the bear seating on crumpled grass and saying “I would not eat a rabbit” although, I told the students, we don’t really know if he did eat the rabbit.  So I asked what they think happened to the rabbit.

Students writing and drawing how they think the bear got his hat back.

Students writing and drawing how they think the bear got his hat back from the rabbit.

The bear asked "nice lee."

The bear asked “nice lee.”

Session Three-We Found a Hat

For the last Klassen hat book, I asked the students what they thought happened the next day.  Lots of different explanations from the positive (they share the hat) to the not-so positive (they fight over the hat)!  Really the point of this 3 week activity was to practice writing sentances, ensuring that the sentances started with a capital letter and had some sort of puncuation at the end.

The turtles share (ser) the hat.

The turtles share (ser) the hat.

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The Klassen books were very popular and it was funny that they got the humor of them and usually laughed in the same places.

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UPDATE: Today after reading the book, Swap! by Steve Light to a first grade class and the students were getting up and going to check out books, one of the students asked, “Are we going to write today?”  I was stumped for a minute.  Write?  Then the light bulb went off.  For the past 3 weeks these students had been writing and drawing each time after reading a Jon Klassen book.  Ah, so maybe some of them were really enjoying that part of their library visit!

 

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