The students in Mrs. Kwon's 1st grade class recently added a new skill to their technology toolbox. They each learned about PowerPoint and how to create a presentation. They were tasked with creating a PowerPoint presentation titled "All About Me" with at least 3 slides and adding sentences and inserting images to each slide. Students who finished early were encouraged to add transitions and animations to their slides. I was so impressed by how quickly the students learned how to create their slides, and I was even more impressed by how many of them enhanced their presentation with transitions. This activity addressed their technology standard: "Creates a document using digital tools and media-rich resources." Here are a few pictures:
On March 13th, Argyle students were treated to a visit with author Diane Z. Shore. I'm not sure how many adjectives I could think of to describe her visit, but Awesome, Phenomenal, Engaging, and Inspiring are the first that come to mind. As the students were coming into the learning commons, Ms. Shore wasted no time quickly engaging them and getting them ready for the presentation by sharing a series of knock-knock jokes and riddles with them. By the time all of the students were seated, she already had them hooked. I gave a quick, formal introduction, and Ms. Shore began her presentation. There were a total of 3 presentations: Kdg and 1st, 2nd and 3rd, and 4th and 5th grade; Ms. Shore made sure that each was appropriate for the grade levels. 4th and 5th grade teachers were so impressed with how she was able to connect with the curriculum. Throughout the presentation for their grade levels, she talked about different forms of figurative language, such as hyperbole, personification, simile, alliteration, and onomatopoeia. It was an excellent review! 1st grade and kindergarten had an opportunity to engage in the presentation by participating in a Reader's Theater style reading of Rosa Loves to Read.
None of the students could believe it when Ms. Shore told them how many times she had been rejected before she was finally able to get her first book published. Her message to them all: Keep reading and never give up on their dreams. When she began receiving rejections, she took writing classes to improve her writing, and she started writing poetry.
Some of the questions that our students had for Ms. Shore included:
Here are a few pictures from her visit:
We are so grateful to Ms. Shore for sharing with us and inspiring us to keep pursuing our dreams!
Last week, as a part of our Read Across America Week celebrations, students were invited to the learning commons to participate in a Book Tasting. Students entered the learning commons to find tables set with silver serving trays holding a variety of books, place mats at each chair, and a menu on each place mat. They were also treated to the sounds of jazz music- all to create the ambiance of a nice restaurant. As the students sat in their seats, they were told that the book tasting is an opportunity for them to sample books that they may not have ever considered reading. As they reviewed each book, they completed their book tasting menu by responding to various questions on the menu, such as:
The Cobb County Public Library system has partnered with Cobb County Public Schools and Marietta City Schools to make sure that all students have access to all of the wonderful resources that are available at the public library, including their digital resources.
Now, your student number (the same as your lunch number) will serve as your library card number. With this, you can check out up to 5 books at the library, and you can access digital resources from any place that you have an Internet connection. To open digital resources, you will need to enter a PIN, which your birth month and day. For example, if your birthday is May 1st, your PIN is 0501.
Click the link below to watch a video and learn more about this exciting new partnership!
To go directly to the Cobb County Library PASS page for elementary students, click this link.
If you have any questions, please let me know how I can help!
Prior to our holiday break, Passion City Church, which is located in Atlanta, GA, donated over 400 books to our school! There were enough books for each student in our school to choose one book to keep. The books arrived boxed and grouped by grade level. There were approximately four titles for each grade level. We are so thankful to Passion City Church for thinking of our school and for arranging such a wonderful book drive for our students!
During the week of December 4th, Argyle students had the opportunity to participate in an Hour of Code in the media center. This was a wonderful opportunity for all students in grades K-5 to get an introduction to coding and actually program a game rather than just play it. Some of the programs that they coded were Flappy, Google doodle designs, and CodeSpark. It was so exciting to see the students really get involved in their programs. Some students commented "This is hard!", and I reminded them that it was just a new challenge. I was so proud of every student that participated, because none of them gave up. Some even became little experts and helped their classmates when they were unable to figure out a problem. Every student that participated received a certificate. I am looking forward to hosting this event again next year!
This 9 weeks, 1st grade is focusing on informational writing. Their objective is to write informative/explanatory texts in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide a sense of closure. In order to prepare them for this, I have introduced them to the Super 3 steps in research. The Super 3 consists of three research steps: Plan, Do, and Review. Once the students had gotten to know the Super 3 and we had practiced together in PebbleGo Animals, they were ready to start their research. The students opened PebbleGo Animals and chose the animal that they wanted to learn more about. Using the questions on their graphic organizers to guide their research, they read through the article about their chosen animal, and recorded the important facts. The next step will be for students to use their research to begin their informational writing. I am looking forward to seeing their final work. Here are some pictures of our junior researchers in action!
Ms. Gadson's 5th grade class was recently in the media center, and I caught a few of her students relaxing and enjoying some of the latest books that were added to our collection. It looks as though our newest books are a big hit!
Every Tuesday morning, our maker's club meets in the media center. These students have the opportunity to use Kano computers to code programs like art and light. They also have the freedom to code Sphero computer using the iPad, as well as build circuits. I love seeing them challenge themselves to figure out something new, and I relish the opportunity to help them determine why their code is not working. See our future programmers below.
It's that time of the school year when students are getting involved in research. I love having the opportunity to introduce students to research, because it is such an important skill that they will need to use throughout so many aspects of their lives- not just in school. This year, I am focusing on teaching the Big6 Research Skills to our 3rd - 5th grade students, and the Super3 Research Skills to our K-2nd students.
I really appreciate how the Big6 helps break the research process down and enables students to determine a focus for their research before they ever go to Destiny (our online catalog) to look for a book or to Cobb Digital Library to search for online resources. I have learned in the past that many students are quite capable of searching for sources for their research without very much assistance. The problems seem to arise when they have found their sources and they are attempting to find the information that will address their research topics. This is Step 4 of the Big6, and this is the step that I am concentrating on with our students right now. As we focus on Step 4, we will work on skimming and scanning, determining important information, taking notes, and citing sources.
I am thrilled that we have started our research lessons, and I am eager to see what our students produce as a result of their research.