Technology has come along in leaps and bounds in the last ten years. It is totally amazing what technology students have at their fingertips today and how it is adding to skills, knowledge and learning. Students at our school are fortunate to have access to 1:1 netbooks from grade two together with other shared resources such ipads, ipod touches and digital and flip cameras. Interactive whiteboards in classrooms provide teachers with a resource that enhances student engagement and lesson focus. With a laptop connected to an interactive whiteboard teachers can present dvds and videos and internet activities along with anything else they have prepared on their computer. Ipads or ipod touches together with great apps provide students with new formats to produce outcomes that build, extend and enhance learning beyond the paper filled classroom that is limited only by imagination. Recently year 6 students have planned and written short books, some chose to produce their book on an ipad with a great app called ‘Book Creator for ipad’. The finished product can be saved and transported as an ebook or pdf and can then be printed if required. This provides two formats for the book to be shared with other students, parents and teachers. Year two and three students use a voice recorder app to record themselves reading, then listen back to the track to self-assess their reading skills. Dragon dictation app transforms speech to text which is valuable to students who struggle to get their words on paper. The text can then be emailed and manipulated in a word document or other similar word processing file. The Choiceswork app is a new find and is great for students with learning difficulties providing a graphical interface of tasks, emotions and rewards adding a new dimension to the structure of the day that is tailored to their specific needs. The countdown timer on this app is great for students to manage their own time while undertaking tasks. Technology is not the be-all of education, but it is here to stay and teachers are embracing what is on offer and in turn enhancing student learning.
P-6 Students will be involved in the National Simultaneous Reading of The Very Cranky Bear by Nick Bland. Students are asked to bring their favourite bear along to join the the activities. Year 6 students will be acting out the story, there is a teddy bears picnic and then students will be using their bears in extension activities in classrooms during the day. The bears might get their measurements taken in maths and have bear stories read to them in the literacy block. If they are really lucky they might even get their portraits painted in art or even to participate in dance and PE classes. Hopefully they will go home tired, but happy bears!
The First Tuesday Book Club, ABC TV are looking for the 10 Aussie Books you should read before you die. You can have your vote now http://www.abc.net.au/arts/aussiebooks/ Great titles have been shortlisted to choose from. I agree with Mex Fox that Tim Winton’s ‘Cloudstreet’ is a favourite. There are too many great books to vote for just 3, read them all!
This years book is The Very Cranky bear by Nick Bland.
It’s Education Week in Victoria and this will be one of our special activities for the week.
Link to ALIA for more information and resources http://www.alia.org.au/nss/
Scholastic teacher notes http://www.scholastic.com.au/schools/education/teacherresources/assets/pdfs/Cranky_Bear_TN.pdf