Some of you may have seen me traveling the building with my supply cart and a cart of chromebooks. That is because this year I am utilizing my C.O.W. (classroom on wheels). I wasn't quite sure how it would work out or if I would enjoy it. Well, let me tell you, I am loving it! Moving from classroom to classroom allows me to see what the kids are doing in class (which I can then use in planning my lessons) and I'm getting lots of walking in, as well. The students have done such a great job of learning our new routine and how to handle the chromebooks as we take them out of the cart and then put them back in before I move on. It was slow moving at first, but as they become more comfortable, we're beginning to have a smoother schedule.
During September, we will be concentrating on digital citizenship. We'll review our internet safety rules and do a few activities that will remind us of how to use those rules in real-life situations. We use netsmartzkids.org and nsteens.org in the classroom. Please feel free to visit these websites for more information. Since we're working on an A-B Friday schedule this year in Technology, most of our Fridays will be used for keyboarding practice. It is so important that the students learn early where to rest their fingers on the keyboard so that moving forward, they are able to increase their speed and accuracy.
I look forward to an exciting and fun year.
We have had such a great year in the Technology lab! This month will be spent reviewing some of the skills we've learned and having a little bit of fun. Yearbook students will be finalizing layouts and Advanced Technology students will be doing a fun video game project.
I pray your family has a safe and fun summer vacation. I look forward to seeing everyone again in the fall.
Kindergarten students will be doing some typing in Google Docs in the next couple weeks. This will review the placement of letters on the keyboard while also exposing them to a word processing application. First and second graders will be working at typing.com, continuing their intensive keyboarding unit. This website teaches them "old style," teaching them their homerow keys and building from there. Third graders are continuing their projects from March. Half of the class is writing stories and turning them into story books using Google Slides. The other half is working on an all-about-me adjective project using Google Docs and our chromebook cameras.
Fourth and fifth grade students are still reviewing for our Diocesan Technology Assessments. I'm hoping to have everyone ready to test by the week of April 10. Our hope is to be done testing before we leave for Easter break.
Our yearbook students are getting serious with layout now. We'll be spending our time putting pages together. Our coding students have been using lenovogamestate.com for coding for the last couple weeks. They seem to be enjoying it. They also have been exposed to research and researchers who have looked into the positive effects of video gaming. They will be doing a project soon surrounding video games.
Once K-5 wraps up these units, we will do an end-of-the-year internet safety review. It always amazes me when I read or listen to the news and hear about students who have overshared online or met someone in person. We will continue discussing what is appropriate and not appropriate when we're online and how our best bet when we're not sure or are confused is to ask a trusted adult for advice.
I pray your family is blessed during this last bit of Lent and into the Easter season.
Is it already March? This year seems to be flying right by. We are still busy in the Technology Lab. Kindergarten students will begin putting together all they've learned this year by logging into their Chromebooks, navigating to a website, plugging in their own headphones, and getting to work. Sounds very basic, but they have all worked so hard to learn each individual step in the process. I am proud of their progress. First and second graders will be concentrating on keyboarding skills this month. Even though their tiny fingers don't quite fit the keyboards, it is so important that they learn where the letters are on the keyboard and also where their fingers should rest when not typing. By the time they reach third grade, they should be in perfect position to begin using their home row keys when typing.
Third grade students have a modified schedule for Technology until they are done with their Music program. As soon as they are finished with that, they will also put together all the skills they've learned so far this year and produce a Spring project. I'm still putting the finishing touches on my plans, but I hope they all have fun with it.
Fourth and fifth grade students will begin reviewing for the Diocesan Technology Assessment. There is a computer-based portion of the test and also a keyboarding element. I have complete faith that the students will do well. The test is a compilation of everything they've learned thus far in school. Sounds like a lot, but the test only covers the most important elements from the standards. With regards to keyboarding, fourth graders are expected to type 14 words per minute with a 95% accuracy by the end of the school year. Fifth graders are expected to type 17 words per minute with a 95% accuracy. We have been doing keyboarding practice in the lab all year long. Again, I have total faith that the students will do a fantastic job.
I pray that your family is having a peaceful, prayerful Lenten season.
Well, January was a little crazy with days off and then Catholic Schools Week. So we will continue on with the same units as January into February. With more days off and parent/teacher conferences to come, we should be able to finish up those units by the end of the month and start fresh in March.
May God continue to bless your family and St. Peter Catholic School.
Happy New Year! I hope your family had a relaxing and peaceful holiday season.
We are back to work in the Technology Lab. Kindergarten students will begin learning Google Docs this month. Even though they are still learning the letter placements on the keyboard, we will try some typing. First and second graders will begin learning Google Slides. Some of them may remember working in Microsoft PowerPoint last year, so we'll be working to transfer that knowledge to our new app.
Third graders will be concentrating on keyboarding this month. It is so important that they learn the correct finger placement NOW. It will serve them well for the remainder of their days. If you catch your child typing at home, please remind them to use their home row keys! Fourth and fifth graders will begin learning Google Sheets. Again, we'll be transferring their knowledge of Microsoft Excel over to the new app.
We are also starting the new semester with a new group of middle school students in our elective classes. I'll have two groups of students in Advanced Technology/Coding and a new group in Yearbook. I can't wait to get to know the new groups and get to work!
May God bless your family.
I pray that your family has been blessed, thus far, during this holy season of Advent. We are working hard in the Technology Lab. The beginning of December brings a very exciting event to our classes...the Hour of Code. Every student will have a chance to do a little computer coding. Code is a set of instructions that computers understand. The students will be able to see firsthand how computer coders create the games and apps that we know and love. We will be using the website code.org. Even the little ones will be involved, as a class and individually. I love this activity and it melts my heart when I see the wonder and awe in their eyes when they first complete a set of instructions and the computer does exactly what they told it to do. THAT'S why I love teaching!
Enjoy every second of anticipation leading up to the birth of our Savior!
The technology lab will be a busy place in November. The kindergarten students are doing such a great job signing into the Chromebooks! They will soon be learning how to navigate to a website by typing in the URL. I am so proud of them!
First and second grades will dive into Google Docs. It closely resembles Microsoft Word, but does have its nuances. Third and fourth grades will be learning how to create a survey/quiz/questionnaire using Google Forms. Fifth Grade will be doing some keyboarding practice using Google Docs.
Our Advanced Technology class continues to code at least two days a week. They are also working on a big project to share with the class. All work is done at school, but you might ask your student what topic they have chosen. And our yearbook class should finally be able to begin pasting in school pictures this month. It takes a bit for Lifetouch to have our pictures ready to work with, but I am confident that they will be ready in the next few days.
I pray that your family has a wonderful November, thanking God for all our blessings.
Our kindergarten students are getting better and faster at signing into their Chromebooks. I know they are easily frustrated when it doesn't work the first time, but I reassure them that they WILL get it soon enough. They are becoming more comfortable with the keyboard and letter placement. They'll be pros in no time!
First and second grade students will be playing some fun learning games while also continuing to learn how to navigate on the Chromebooks. They've had just a taste of Google Slides and will get a small glimpse of Google Docs. Third and fourth grades will be digging deeper into Google Docs, especially learning where to find things that we normally used in Microsoft Word. They are so similar, yet just different enough that we need to do a little investigating sometimes to find what we're looking for. Fifth grade will be learning about Google Forms and all the cool ways to use them.
Our Coding/Advanced Technology classes will continue coding (some of the students have now completed an entire 20-hour course!) and working on a new Genius Hour project. Our first project this year was easy and simple and involved telling the class how to do something we already knew how to do. This one is much more in-depth and has three components...a slide presentation, a two-page paper, and either a demonstration or art project to share with the class. I have made it clear that the students will have PLENTY of class time to work on this. They do NOT need to work on it at home (minus gathering possible supplies). We will spend at least two classes per week working on the project. Can't wait to see what their creative little minds come up with!
Our yearbook class is having lots of fun! We have chosen a cover and theme and spent a little bit of time choosing a background for all the pages. As soon as Lifetouch loads our school pictures into the system, we will begin laying out pages.
I pray that your family is enjoying the beautiful fall weather. It is certainly a gift from God!