To be honest, I had a difficult time deciding what I would do for my final project. I couldn’t decide whether I should create a new unit plan that I would use for my new position, or adapt an older unit plan from my two years of teaching grade 3. I decided to adapt my planner from the grade 3 Where We Are in Place and Time unit on exploration. I will be collaborating with the grade 3 teachers and will be able to help them with the new technology additions to this planner.
This was a really good starting point for me because, I was able to not only reflect back- but also look forward. I am going to be assisting many teachers with units and while I was making this planner, I found a great technology idea for the Journeys unit our kindergarten does.
The past two years, I’ve done a wax museum as the summative assessment for my unit. I wanted to change the focus this year as a product students could build upon throughout numerous weeks. I also wanted to give them resources to find more information on their explorer. In the past we spent a lot of time researching explorers together as a class and I wanted to create a unit where they could spend more time focusing on explorers of individual interests. This is where Google Forms came in with the option for student choice and voice. The will choose the types of explorers they are interested in learning more about and then use the essential questions to guide their learning. In week 2, I wrote the post Repeat After Me. I could quote this entire video in my post… but just take 1 minute and 37 seconds to watch it again.
This video inspires me and helps mold my mission for this school year.
“You have the power to make it happen.”
I chose to create a Google Doc for student research, rather than having students handwrite their information. In the past, worksheets have been lost and some students were not able to work from home. This will open up both of those options to help students be more successful.
I also added in Google My Maps. Previously students used a cut out map of either America or the world to plot the journey of their explorer. My Maps makes the experience interactive and visual for students to actually see the places that were explored.
Through this course some of my biggest take-aways came from week 3: Design or adapt relevant learning experiences that incorporate digital tools and resources to promote student learning and creativity.
This is what I am doing now in my unit planner and in my upcoming professional development sessions this week on Seesaw and Student-Led Math. I am designing learning experiences that incorporate digitals tools that make students AND teachers question, research, and drive their own learning.
When students complete this unit I hope to see joy and excitement! This year I had an ELL student who never spoke. She went home everyday and practiced her speech with her mom and on speech day, she spoke her speech out loud! The entire class erupted in applause and her mom came to me with tears in her eyes because she was so proud. I couldn’t hold back the tears either- it was amazing! This is a very exciting project and allowed for a lot of student creativity- but with inclusion of more technology resources there are even more options available for students.
Oh, the Places You’ll Go! Course 1 Final Project
You’ll notice that my unit planner does not yet include all of the attachments/links to the documents. I will continue to update this planner as I find resources and as we complete the unit in our classrooms.
- You are reflective about your practice.
- You are active in gaining new understandings of teaching and learning.
- You are a continuous learner.
That’s all for now- See you in a week! 🙂