Thursday, September 29, 2011

Alphabet, Art, Teeth and Technology

Here is a preview of an innovative unit that our first grade teachers, Sally Laha and Laura Carew, will be teaching later in the year. The objective is to help the students learn about good dental health while applying their knowledge of the alphabet. The assessment includes image creation and application by having the students write a sentence using their dental knowledge with their assigned letter of the alphabet.

Technology supports the learning with the students using the tablet computers and Windows Journal to draw their image and write their sentence. The teachers print each Journal page to create their alphabet book. A digital version is posted in Prezi for parents to view from home. You can take a look now to see what the last year's students created.

As a follow up activity, the students use Kidspiration to create a diagram where they pull image symbols on to the canvas, one for each letter of the alphabet (e.g., T for a tiger image). An additional learning objective is to have students further their understanding of how we categorize information using the library categories in Kidspiration
 (e.g., Ocean Life, Transportation).

It was something with the first graders last year to hear the collaboration as the students searched in the different categories of the symbol library sharing “I found a ‘P’ picture in the animal library! Has anyone found a Q?” It was also something to see the students who did some lateral thinking as they went into the US States category to use state names to make their letter matches. Too bad their is no state name that starts with “Q”. :)

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