Month one: hold on, here we go!
Camp! We returned from our three-day Outdoor Education trip in Wisconsin on Friday, so of course we started talking, writing and then blogging about Camp Timber-lee. Such enthusiasm and detail! Wow…sure pays to find something kids want to write about rather than forcing contrived prompts they don’t connect with.
We started our first Project-based Learning unit with Mrs. Parisi’s class in Long Island, The Denton Dynamos. US Government: integrating reading, writing, history, and current events by studying some significant US laws. Students will trace laws back through time by reading and comparing electronic and paper sources. They are in teams of eight, four from the Dynamos and four from our class. So far we’ve had two joint Skype lessons, and we begin collaborative research in Google Docs on Monday.
Today we meet the Wilderness Classroom team on Google Hangout before they head out on their journey. We will follow Amy Freeman and a team of geologists from UC Berkeley and MIT as they camp, canoe, hike, bike, and dogsled around the world to provide interactive classroom lessons. Here’s their itinerary.
- Understand how the Slate Islands were formed.
- Explore the Boreal Forest by dogsled this winter and study a variety of topics including; weather, geology and erosion, watersheds, predator-prey relationships, wolves, the night sky, the physics of dogsledding, Ojibwa culture, Expedition ABC’s, and much more. (January – March 2014)
- Explore the Amazon Rainforest. Join us as we follow in the footsteps of Theodore Roosevelt!
(April – June 2014)
Then there is iEARN, (International Education and Resource Network )…where their motto is “Learning with the world, not just about it.” We will be joining a Learning Circle with classrooms around the world to engage and collaborate in the My Hero Project.
The 100 World Challenge! I’ve written about it before, so click the link for more information. The kids love this weekly challenge, and it really helps develop word choice.
Lastly math. Our district is currently in the process of adapting our math instruction to meet the Common Core Standards. The infusion of Mangahigh, LearnZillion, and Khanacademy have really helped with re-teaching while allowing me to get quick snapshots of who is getting it and who needs more support. This instant feedback is critical to my teaching as I reflect and adapt to meet the kids where they are. We’re taking our time to make sure the train isn’t going with no one on!
As I add tech tools to my students’ repertoire, I add them to our Symbaloo page. They have access to this wherever they are. This site will grow and change as we go.
All in all, a great start to the year!
I almost forgot! Our class song:)