Monday, April 10, 2017

We finished all the Lego building! It is incredible what the students have done. After they finished building, they took pictures of "Where I Would Like to Live". This was included in a story they were writing in their classroom about the character they created. The 'Lego Community' was set up and on display during our Town Meeting and our townsfolk were very impressed. Their robot stories are all hanging on our bulletin board and will be displayed during our Unified Arts Festival, as will their buildings and stories. Could we be more proud? No! :-)

Friday, February 17, 2017

Heading Into February Vacation... Already?
Our Community is Together for Vacation!

We are rolling right along with our community projects. Using Legos, the students have now completed the entire community. From brainstorming to collaborating; design to building; the students worked together to learn about all the wonderful aspects of the place where they live. After completing the building of the four different areas, they used a desktop publishing program to create signs to label each of the details. They saved, opened, highlighted, changed colors, centered text and printed. Each time we watch these younger students whizzing through all of the technology challenges we are amazed! How do they do that? Well, they do it in a easy, fluid manner that makes us very proud. 

We are now finishing, editing and printing our robot stories. You should see the happy faces of the students as their very own stories roll out of the color printer! As you can see by the images above, the students were yet again very creative. To get their story out, the used many technology skills: navigating the network paths to get to the story, inserting images from saved files, resizing, rotating, typing, and printing the final product. Wow! 

In the classroom, we have built characters from the community collection and they are in the process of creating stories on the Story Visualizer software. Students are adding details to their own stories using the villages that were created in the lab groups. They are very excited to tell stories and connect community members to our own community.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Welcome 2017

Welcome to the New Year!

One of the last activities we did for 2016 was to make our Art project robots ‘Mobile’. In the video above, you can see one of our builders taking their robot on a ride. All the robots were able to take a journey in our Village Activities Center during their Art blocks. The mobile platform was built with our LittleBits and worked much the same as the signs the students created for our Open House in September. They pushed the slider to make the platform go slower or faster.

As we enter the new year, we are finishing up our Legos Community Projects and our Robot stories using the Story Visualizer software. For the Legos project, they are building the school, our town area, the village area and a neighborhood. In the robot stories, the students are taking their robots through great adventures. 

Also in the classroom, we have been building our characters and rehearsing our stories. We will be introducing our characters and working with the Story Visualizer next week. 

Check out some of our robot friends below!

Friday, December 2, 2016

And.. December Arrives

 Working Together as a Community

As we ended the programming portion of the Village Activities Center, we were so proud of what the students could do. There was no roadblock too powerful to stop them! They worked through every challenge successfully. How did we get such awesome students??

We are now on to their next project - recreating their community. To add to the community we have been creating our characters and practicing our storytelling about the characters in the Lego kits.  We are getting ready to use the story Visualizer to introduce our characters and begin our stories.  The community theme will be a school year project.   We can’t wait to see how it evolves!!

We have the groups busily planning how they would build their community with the Lego Kits we received from the grant. First, they were architects, brainstorming their community and what should be included. And next, they will be the builders… we did tell them they have a budget that they must live within, which is in other words – the materials in each kit!

We have been absolutely astounded at how wonderfully they work together as a team; asking each other’s opinions, taking turns, voting for what they would do… this is with the adults providing minimal guidance. As we step back and watch, it warms our hearts.

Along with the Village and Classroom activities, the students also built cardboard robots in their art classes. We are taking pictures of these wonderful creations so the images can be uploaded to the Story Visualizer software. The students will then create stories about their robot friends. Definitely wonderful learning times.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Learning Software... Programming Robots

29 October

And they did it! The students have finished their veterans letters and they are amazing – so thoughtful and kind. This past week each student also used their BeeBots to get to all the great places in our community. It is awesome as you stand back and watch them figure out how to program those robots. They worked together as a team, tried everyone’s ideas and came up with strategies that got them to their place in the community. Wow!  

We have also  been getting ready for our group work and learning about building together.  We have our Village Building Work rules and we have practiced building and story telling with our emotion Duploblocks.  We are ready to begin to create!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

New Projects

16 October

The students have been learning about their community in the classroom. They have gone from the planet Earth to our very own little community right here in the Mount Washington Valley so the next grant block will be connecting to community. (Their morning blocks were on hold the past few weeks as they did NWEA testing. That is now behind everyone and we are ready for a new project!)

Taking what they are learning in the classroom to the Village Activities Center, they will begin working with our BeeBots robots. These wonderful little robots are great to start students into the world of programming. They simply have four directional buttons (left, right, forwards, backwards), a go button and a pause and delete. The students will program their BeeBots to go to places in their community like their school, library, our Town Gazebo park and many others. So how will this work? The students will be given a question. For instance, as a starter something very simple like, "Where do you check out a great book to read that you can take home with you?" The students would then find the word library on a grid mat. The robot would then need to be programmed to reach that block.

Students are also learning about the Story Vizualizer software we received as a part of our Legos sets. In the lab, they spent an introduction block where they learned the tools they would be using. What is great about this software is we can take pictures of their creations, upload them to a folder then the students can insert them into their stories. Way cool! As they are still doing some classroom activities before they begin writing, they are using the software to create thank you letters to our local veterans. The letters will be included in the school newspaper, which will be given to the veterans when they attend the annual Veterans Day assembly. The newspaper is also online so many others can enjoy the letters. So far the students have been super psyched!

As we start implementing these next projects, 
we'll keep you posted :-)


Thursday, September 22, 2016

Open House

Yesterday, we had our Open House which was very well attended - especially for our first and second graders. During that time, we had one of the grant team members manning a room to share the story of our grant, the training and letting the kids show everyone their final project.

Each group had their kindness sign marquee set up and ready to go. As the students visited, they would show their family members their message and then turned it on. Also in the room with us was their What a Scientist Does booklet; the certificate the trainer left for them; anchor charts; posters; thank you cards they are making for our trainer; signs showing the curriculum connections; and that we received funding for our project
through the Chris Nelson Memorial Grant.
It was an awesome evening!