Course 5 Final Project

Student examples:

UNIT: Non-Fiction Reading Summaries Kathy Sandler and Nancy Gorneau, Grade 4

DESCRIPTION: Grade 4 students read more and more non fiction for academic purposes as the year progresses. In this unit, we will focus on helping students determine importance in non fiction, as well as how to summarize and synthesize newly learned information. Additionally, they will focus on linking new learning to what they already knew and growing new ideas about what they have read. They will also work on stating new learning in their own words.



  1. Language Arts:
    1. Summarize significant events and details
  2. Social Interaction
    1. Speak in a variety of situations including: presenting informational material, describing personal experiences, reciting short poems, delivering oral responses to literature
    2. Use appropriate tone of voice and gestures in social and classroom activities discussions
    3. Speak before a group using appropriate delivery (volume, enunciation, and movement) and language skills (pronunciation, word choice, and usage)
  3. Writing Process Writing Purposes and Resulting Genres
    1. Designs their art work, choosing and evaluating a range of subjects, symbols and ideas for their expressive features, sensory qualities and/or communicative abilities
    2. Designs their art work, choosing and evaluating a range of subjects, symbols and ideas for their expressive features, sensory qualities and/or communicative abilities
    3. Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning
  4. NETS
    1. Creativity and Innovation
    2. Communication and Collaboration
    3. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
    4. Technology Operations and Concepts
    1. Use technology as a tool to research, organize, evaluate and communicate information Apply a fundamental understanding of the ethical/legal issues surrounding the access and use of information technologies


  1. Readers understand that main ideas are supported with relevant evidence and examples.
  2. Readers understand that nonfiction is usually read for a specific purpose: to gather information, learn something new, understand that they are part of a larger world.
  3. Readers understand that reading strategies for nonfiction will be similar to the ones they used in fiction, but they will be used differently.


  1. Why do people read nonfiction?
  2. How does the organizational structure of nonfiction help me understand what I am reading?
  3. How and why is the main ideas supported with evidence and examples?
  4. How do I use reading strategies to make sense of nonfiction?



Goal: Show their Summarizing knowledge using Common Craft style
Role: Become an expert on a topic to teach others
Audience: online, 4th Grade
Situation: creating a movie to present non fiction  information
Product: Common Craft video using Corel


Explain: Students will create a video of a summary
Interpret: Students present the main ideas and supporting details from an article they read
Apply: Reading and writing non fiction strategies
Have perspective: How technology tools help present information effectively
Empathize: Students gain an understanding of Common Craft production and copyright laws
Have self-knowledge: People are drawn to non fiction text that is of interest to them



  • Keywords
  • Boxes and Bullets
  • Paraphrasing
  • Summarizing
  • Storyboard and Summary Script


  • Fact Fragment Frenzy
  • Google Docs -collaborate with Reading partners, ESL teacher, classroom teacher
    • Screen shot comments
  • Cameras – still and video clips
  • Corel Studio Pro3
  • Common Craft
  • Copyright if using other’s images
  • Credit page
  • Contact Common Craft for permission to post

TIME FRAME: Preteach Take Photos Show example of Common Craft – Wed 9 Select article Google Doc – write summary – Wed 16 StoryBoard Create pieces Capture still and/or video Corel Studio Pro Dec 9 and 12 Tips: 5 inches tall, bold dark lines, simple easy to use pictures, 3 minutes, in length, 10-15 minutes to shot narrator, filmer, piece mover


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Technology Standards

ISTE’s NETS for Students (NETS•S)

8 months later and we have approved technology standards for KA-8. We began the process by looking at what other schools were using and decided to base our standards off Arizona’s 2009 Educational Technology Standards, which is based off the NETS for Students 2007. We met several times through out the year to look at the standards and decide which ones we wanted to keep, delete, or tweak to meet our needs. The principals looked them over, stamped their approvals, and now they are being uploaded to Rubicon Atlas.

Next steps:


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Chocolate Printer

Thank you to Candace, Upper School Librarian, for sharing this innovation with me. I think that we need to order one of these for the Lower School for next year. Students would be much more engaged in learning if they could eat their work and not just post it on their blog.

I love the sound that the printer makes like an old dot matrix printer.

The Delicious Future: 3D Chocolate Printer Finally Available for Purchase

YouTube Preview Image
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Common Craft Project

Our final project changed from being supplemental materials to a Common Craft project using the 4th grade Summarizing unit.

  • Kathy worked in the classroom with the students on the skills needed to summarize
  • Taught lesson on copyright
  • Students e-mailed Lee LeFever for permission to use his style
  • We taught the kids to use the digital cameras to take the pictures of their story (students need to work on focusing the camera)
  • Uploaded images to Corel Video Studio Pro X4

And we are still going. We need to add titles, captions, credits, and voice.


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iPad Apps

ASB UnPlugged, Mumbai, India was last week and I was thrilled to be going. I wanted to network and absorb everyone’s knowledge.

There were several sessions on iPads and I attempted to attend them all but some overlapped and you had to make that critical decision of whose to populate.

I went to one that focused on early childhood and found they were mostly applications used to reinforce learning, basically consumption of knowledge. I went to some that were all about creation tools. I need to find, and convey to teachers, a balance of apps for both consumption and creation.

ASB created an app for the program booklet that worked exceptionaly well. It provided times, room schedules, speaker data, notes section, my schedule, and other useful tools built in. Very impressed.

I have now spent countless hours downloading, playing, deleting, and adopting apps. Some of my favorites:

  1. Dragon Dictate: easy to use voice recognition software that you can copy and paste into other documents, email, tweet, or upload to facebook. No need to train the system to your voice. Supposedly 5 times faster than typing and eliminated the need to know how to type accuractely or quickly. I can see using this every class period as students create stories, explain a system, or reflect on work.
  2. BrainPop!: “creates animated, curriculum-based content that engages students, supports educators, and bolsters achievement.” the app saves time and allows kids to safely access the content without surfing the Internet.
  3. Cut the Rope: simple premise-cut the rope, feed the monster a candy, and move on to the next level, additionally acquire the stars and gain more points. Easier said than done, the higher levels take skill, logic and persistents. It is a physics-based puzzle game that can distract you for hours.
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Digital Citizenship

Matthew Winn, a technologist from Southwest Christina School in Fort Worth, Texas, says in his article Promote Digital Citizenship through School-Based Social Networking in the Dec/Jan 2011-12 issue of Learning and Leading with Technology: “Digital citizenship does not just happen. Teaching it has to be intentional, with lessons that show students the acceptable norms of online behavior.” If you know me, you know I agree with this statement.

I have completed several lessons on cyberbullying, privacy, copyright, creative commons, and citing sources. Every lesson I teach I reinforce ethical use but what really needs to happen is the classroom teacher reinforcing digital citizenship expectations.

4th grade students created a How-To pamphlet on a topic of their choice. One girl told me she could not post it to her blog. She explained that she looked for countless hours for images that represented what she want to convey but could not find them under creative commons so she used them anyways, added hyperlinks, and captions but cannot make it available to the public. I was thrilled that she understood copyright and could articulate why she was not able to share it to the world. I still have other kids who ignore these rules and post whatever they want. I do not have the manpower and time to enforce ethical use of 441 student blogs but with the help of the classroom teacher we can monitor and encourage to use the tools appropriately.

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I started my first lesson on Cyberbullying with 5th grade. The students went to my blog and posted a sticky using Wallwisher telling what they think cyberbullying is.

Once they posted they refreshed the wall and saw others comments, some added more information.

We then discussed how I separated the responses: people who used their names, a screen name, or left it anonymous. Why would you post a comment as anonymous? or use a screen name?

We discussed some of their responses, provided examples, and talked about the ways you could be bullied online.

I showed them examples of cyberbullying from their own classmates via Google Chat, which was disabled earlier in the year because of bullying and inappropriate use. It will be turned back on after this unit is finished.

For homework they will answer a series of questions on a Google Form about their own behaviors online. Once they are all submitted I will graph the results and share with the kids.

We briefly discussed what you should do if it happens to you or someone you know. Next week will discuss in more details what to do if bullied? Why bullies do what they do? How it makes people feel?

These are 2 of the classes responses. I found it interesting how one class was mostly anonymous/screen names and one was not.

A couple comments about Wallwisher:

  • There is a size limit of 160 characters
  • There is no easy way of arranging the sticky notes they show up all jumbled on top of each other
  • You can move the sticky’s around easily in Chrome and Firefox but not IE if you are the owner they should stay the way you arranged them
  • You need an account to create a wall so you can edit it later
  • Students do not need to login
  • Simply double-click anywhere on the page and a sticky note will appear there.
  • Saving is instantaneous
  • You can add photos, links, and videos
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I have been researching STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) and I came across this cool application, Kudo, created by Microsoft FUSE Labs.

Taken from Kudo website:

Kodu Teaches more than Programming

  • Kodu is a rich tool for narrative creation and storytelling
  • Kodu demonstrates that programming is a creative medium
  • Kodu helps children with critical thinking, breaking a complex goal into manageable steps, and iterate on the design process – an approach applicable to all academic  subjects, business and personal relationships
  • Kodu introduces the logic and problem solving of programming
  • Kodu introduces conditions and sequences, which teaches cause and effect
  • Students learn about cooperation, logic and creativity in addition to programming

I look forward to exploring this game creation program. Maybe it will be an after school activity next year.

It is a free download.

Introduction to Kodu video

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Doesn’t Compute

Image: Jim Wilson/New York Times

Click the picture to read the article.

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Final Project – Supplementals

Creating supplemental materials is going to be my focus. I plan to work with Kathy and create matrials that can be used by parents to support their children, students who were absent, and teachers who want to do the lesson in their own room. and I cannot forsee being able to flip the classroom in grades 3-5 technology due to the fact that students have so little time to work on “additional” projects at home.

I taught the students how to make a table in Word using their afterschool plans as the content. They used the Snipping Tool, my favorite accessory of Windows 7, and posted it on their blog. We had discussions about what is personal information, time management, and parental expectations. The conversations were fabulous and would never have happened if they did the assignment from home.

Here is a typical 5th grade schedule from school dismissal time until bed. Practicing violin/piano at 10:40 at night? I have been asleep for a good hour!

I look forward to creating the supplmentals and hope to have students create them as well.

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