After reading about how technology has engaged the students in Carmen’s class, I thought about the same affect it has had on children in grade 1 & 2. The activities using media definitely developed throughout the year as the children gained confidence and skill in their use of computers (some had to learn how to move the mouse and click).
At the beginning of the year the children played educational games on the computers in the computer lab. Then we learned how to log on individually with a password (this took time). Then students wanted to create using KidPix software, so we worked our 2-D drawings for math into a computer lesson and printed off our creations to share with one another. As the year progressed, we integrated the use of video cameras to record math songs that they created. This was such a success that the children wanted to also record their “Public Service Announcements” (PSA) that they were working on. This project integrated persuasive writing, media literacy, and science.
Once the PSAs were completed there was some difficulty sharing the videos for viewing. A colleague suggested we use VoiceThread, which would enable all the videos to be downloaded to one location and would also allow the students to view and comment on each others work. There is a cost for this service ($15 for 2 months), however, it was already worth it when the children gazed in awe at themselves and their classmates. We are now in the next step of using the technology which enables the children to provide feedback to one another’s PSAs using either a voice tool or a comment box for writing.
This technology has extended the children’s learning for media literacy, adding metacognition and peer feedback. If you are interested visit Voicethread for teachers at http://voicethread.com/products/k12/.