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!
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/479319938847211522I 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!
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.