What are you thankful for? Stop by the library to add your thanks to the wall. There is a cart where you can find pens and sticky notes.
Dr. Newett’s and Mrs. Bridwell’s ninth grade social studies classes visited the library for their last digital citizenship lesson. The topic for this lesson was cyber-bullying. Mrs. Myers found a transcript and video from a special piece that CBS did on cyber-bullying last year. She divided the transcript into sections – apps, school involvement, parent response, etc – and glued those responses onto bulletin board papers.
Students were told that they would be reading pieces from a piece of work (but were not told what the complete work was) and that they would be writing responses to the piece they read. Mrs. Myers gave them some preliminary guidance telling students to think about their response. Did the information make them feel an emotion or did they have questions about the information given? She then went over the rules – work quietly, write the entire time, students could write comments or questions, and the comments must be kind.
Mrs. Myers and the teachers divided the students up into groups and sent them to the tables where the bulletin board papers were lying. After passing out thin markers, students go to work. Mrs. Myers set the timer to two minutes and thirty seconds. Once the timer went off, students were told to stop, get up, and rotate to the next table. Once every group had visited every table, Mrs. Myers asked them what the pieces of text were from. A couple of students in every class session were able to deduce that they were all from a news article. Mrs. Myers then showed the video from which the transcript had been taken.
Most of the groups made very thoughtful comments. All of them took two tables (or so) to settle in and get into the concept.
For where we got the inspiration for write-around, see the Unquiet Librarian’s excellent blog post at The Unquiet Librarian.
Long ago, I read the Quiet Librarian’s posts about the concept of write around (please see her posts at write around ). I had approached several teachers about trying this out and found one this year who was willing to give it a go.
Nick Plaistad is an awesome physical science teacher who works with Freshman Academy students. We met to talk about an upcoming project in which the students create a comic strip showing Newton’s three laws of motion. I at first suggested that I talk to the students about what a graphic novel IS. Then, I thought – why not borrow the write around concept.
Originally, I was going to copy pages from graphic novels, put the pages on tables, and have the students move from page to page. The high school moved to one to one last year, so I decided to make the write around digital instead. After talking with Adam Babcock, our instructional coach, I made the digital write around proposition to Mr. Plaistad and suggested that I grade the graphic analysis while he grades the laws.
This is how the lesson goes:
1. I use keynote and present information sharing definitions of graphic novels, comic books, and manga, the elements of a graphic page, and how they are important literature types (on par with “regular” stories).
2. The students go to Nick Plaistad’s Edmodo or 365 site account and open the analyze comic question sheet and answer the questions for each comic (I gave them examples from nine different graphic novel titles – I used the iPad to take photos of the pages that they also accessed from Edmodo or 365). This will be turned in to me.
3. The students will create their own comic strip showing Newton’s laws with speech or thought bubbles, images, and arrows. I asked to have a copy of the excellent ones to display on the flat screen tv in the library.
So, the next step is to figure out how students could truly write-around what they were seeing. I need to play with capturing pages and opening them in different formats. It would also be fun to figure out if there is a way to electronically pass the document “around the room”. So, baby step accomplished!
Copyrighted February 11, 2015
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