The semester is at an end – what did I learn? Way too much to include in this post, but I have some discoveries worth mentioning. One is flannelboard discoveries, not what you would necessarily expect in an elementary room anymore, right? However, I have a huge interest in non-fiction and poetry. Imagine the gain in content understanding when retelling a non-fiction trade book depiction of content which coordinates with current topics. Now consider, fluency, engagement, and comprehension as a pair of students use a flannelboard to practice a two-voice poem. Do I have your interest now? The semester was full enough that I only had time to complete one story (non-fiction on pumpkins in poetic prose), but I will use the holiday to add to my collection.
Sumdog and Dogonews
I found two new websites which I can incorporate into my future classroom. One is www.sumdog.com. This one uses personal avatars, allowing coins earned to be used to purchase accessories for this avatar as correct answers are given when playing a plethora of game choices. The instructions are a little ambiguous, with not much time for a student to process the information, but the games may be learned through trial and error which I find is often the case for today’s games anyway. It’s a highly engaging website. It would be nice if teachers had a little more control over student choice within appropriate perimeters. I’m all for student choice.
The other website I’ve discovered through edublogs. It’s now one of my widgets on the right sidebar, www.dogonews.com. This site has previewed articles and videos for student viewing. Some articles are linked to maps. There is also an area for book reviews by children. I’ve not even realized the full potential of this website yet, but know it’s worthy. Articles have some words highlighted, linking to a glossary to aid vocabulary.