Doing Integrated Technology Projects with Students in the Literacy Block

I wanted to get back with everyone regarding the last literacy center, my Technology and Content Integration Project, the one I said I would devote an entire post to in my last blog post about my independent literacy rotations. See that post for my center schedule and philosophy about "independent work."

This center always involves some form of research, reading and writing about information and an expression (a noun meaning an end-product) and I use the term research to mean...

 WONDER about something and gather information about it,
INVESTIGATE the wonder and information, 
SYNTHESIZE the information,
 and then EXPRESS it in a create digital format. 

We call the final product or project, an EXPRESSION. 
 We use the WISE research model.

In the beginning, I don't ask students to do anything too content heavy because I want them to learn some technical steps and project protocol, especially when it comes to digital citizenship, app usage and usability, and some basic musts for self-videography 101.

Since students usually get through four 30-minutes rotations for one center in a week, it *usually* isn't enough time for them to complete the research cycle and do it well.  So, I usually just let these projects run for two weeks or until most of them are done.   Since we are six weeks into the quarter, these are the Ingrated Projects we have done or are working on so far:

Video Introduction
Book Review
Ice Research  

For the Video Introduction, which is the first introduction to even the techie stuff, too,  I model, whole group, writing the script for the Video Introduction, in front of them.  Here's mine: 

I then model doing some edits and revisions and then model how to record their own selfie video.  First, I modeled an good example, in front of them.  Then, I modeled a "non-example" of a selfie video, what not to do. And they loved that.

As you can imagine, the students thought it was a hoot to watch the bad non-example, and they were quick to give me a video critique.  So, to capitalize on their fresh perspective on all the things I did well and things I needed to avoid, we created this Video Critique T-Chart together...the next day.

From this point forward, students worked in groups to compose and record their video introductions.
They used the following Video Introduction script template.

You can grab it free HERE

The only technical video requirements I tell students is that it has to be about 30 seconds in length.  Too much longer than that, and they don't choose their words carefully.  The time limit (like the character limit in Twitter) forces them to be concise and have high utility with the words and ideas they want to get across. Before students can *make* their video and after they are done with the script, they have to PRACTICE.PRACTICE.PRACTICE it. (BTW, re-reading their OWN writing is great fluency practice.)  This means re-reading their own writing over and over and over, *like* many times. Otherwise, they will read (and stumble and bumble) all the way through their script and it will not look and sound good. I also tell them that in Hollywood, it may take several "takes" to get the video you like, so don't be afraid to record over and over until you get the one you like.  Delete the ones you don't like and only send me the one you are pleased with.  The next part took some initial setting up, but now the uploads are smooth.

Video Uploading Directions 
(this is what works for me, my school and our district)
I tell students to email their video to me and provide them with my email address.  
They use the curvy arrow at the bottom of the video to email it. 
Then, I retrieve the video from my iPhone. 
Download it to my iPhone.
Upload it to my You Tube Channel, which anyone can do.
The uploading takes about 15 seconds. 
Delete the video off my phone.
Then, as a class, we watch and critique them all.  

At first the videos are not great, but that's ok.  They are a baseline. Once they watch their own videos back, they will get better.  

The next Integrated Project is a Book Review.  Using a self-selected book from their independent reading basket, they write a Summary and a Critique of one of their books and repeat the editing, revising, practicing, recording and critiquing process.  Students use the following form to write their Book Review script.
Download it free HERE

The latest Integrated Project is a content related research project about Ice.  Using the WISE model, students wondered SOMETHING about ice (to tie into their science unit on Matter right now and winter). They are working to research a question they have that is ice related and are working now on creating their digital expression.  This time we are using the Educreations platform and when they are done, I will put up the link.  Here are the students doing some ice research.

And this is the form they put their research into before creating their "expression."

e-WISE Research Student Template

I also created the CRITIQUE poster for them that is at the top of this blog post.. They love using the word CRITIQUE now, so you can grab it by double clicking on it at the top. Remember that "critiquing" is using Revised Bloom's Level 5 and DOK Level 3.

I will be creating another blog post the day after Thanksgiving with some GREAT news ahead, so stay tuned!

Happy Thanksgiving (and happy birthday to me tomorrow).
Until Friday, Take Care...So Thankful for YOU!



Alison Rose said...

Love your "good example" and "non-example" videos. These are perfect to use with the students to get them started. Thank you for sharing!
Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

Katie B. said...

Such GREAT ideas! I just found your blog tonight and have pinned at least 5 things already. I am excited to get this started in my classroom. Thank you for all your insight. And Happy Birthday!

Laura said...

FABULOUS IDEA, as always! :) I think having students create videos not only validates their work and ideas, but it encourages them to evaluate the information they include. I was able to download the first form, but not the one for the Book Review. Any suggestions? Thanks!

staci brandt said...

LOVE YOUR LITERACY BLOCK!!! I am already getting ready for the fall to implement the 7 rocks and stations!! In addition, the technology projects. However, when I tried to download the book summary sheet, it won't allow me. Could you please email it to me?

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