Bellevue Public Schools, Bellevue, NE
The Hour of Code--Starts Next Week!
From December 7th-13th this year tens of millions of students of all ages will participate in the Hour of Code. The idea is to take one hour during the week to explore the world of computer science and coding. Anyone with any level of experience can participate--even someone who has never done any coding before. You will see that coding can be fun, easy and accessible to all ages. No time next week, no problem. Just code for an hour anytime that works into your schedule. It can be done all at one time or just a few minutes over a few days or weeks.
For more details, apps, and websites check out our Hour of Code flyer at https://www.smore.com/n1pwd-hour-of-code-resources
New Teachers Tool Up with SAMR
Our new teachers received a half day of technology training on November 3. The focus of the day was to target instruction in a digital world. Teachers learned about the SAMR framework for technology integration in the classroom along with several technology tools to target instruction.
The SAMR model was created by Dr. Reuben Puentedura. SAMR, a model of technology integration, helps teachers infuse digital tools into lesson plans. The four rungs in the SAMR ladder are: Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition. As technology is infused into lesson plans, lessons move from being enhanced to transformed with technology.
Whole group instruction has traditionally been delivered in lecture format where the teacher stands in front of the class and presents a lesson to all students at the same time from the front of the room. Instead, new teachers learned to use Nearpod to present material to individual student devices and gather formative data while the lesson is presented. This tool allows teachers to target instruction during the same instructional block.
In addition, teachers learned to use Quicktime Player to create screencasts and also as a tool to provide students video feedback. Screencasts are short teacher created video lessons. Screencasts are a powerful way for teachers to duplicate their presence and provide each student his/her own personalized lesson. These are powerful tools and provide students valuable information relevant to the lesson. These can be shared on a web page, YouTube channel, Google Classroom, Schoology, e-mailed, and more.
Teachers also learned how to use Plickers in the classroom. It allows teachers to collect real-time formative date without the need for student devices. Plickers can be used in a classroom with one device such as an iPad or a smartphone. Teachers can utilize Plickers for quick checks for understanding or an end of unit review.
Infusing these digital tools and using the SAMR model as a guide allows teachers to transform their lessons by moving up the SAMR ladder.
Makerspace in the Lewis and Clark Media Center
Exciting things are happening in the Lewis & Clark Media Center as Amy Tasich, Media Specialist, is in the process of building a makerspace for students. A makerspace can be created in classrooms and/or media centers within schools where students can come together to build, invent, tinker, collaborate, and learn through doing. Tasich reinvented a corner of the media center where students can create, learn, and explore.
She hosted two events to introduce students to the makerspace culture. Before Halloween, students participated in Fright Night at the Library where they had the option to build Franken Toys or create scary movies. Students enjoyed taking apart toys and, similar to the movie Toy Story, created their own version of creepy toys. The second event was wildly popular and even had a waiting list. Students eagerly completed building challenges using the Minecraft app.
Makerspaces are not limited to Lewis & Clark. They are beginning to pop up in classrooms throughout the district as teachers look for ways to engage and challenge students. To read more about Maker Spaces, check out the websites below.
Websites Resources on Makerspaces
The K-6 Webpage Needs Your Expertise
The K-6 Website has recently been redesigned and relaunched. We are pleased with the streamlined look and are working to add more content. If you have suggestions on science and social studies resources such as interactive websites, videos, or simulations please let us know and we will link them up. In addition, if you have any other sites or suggestions, please let us know. We will update the site weekly. Click the forms below to send us the links.
Check out the K-6 Website here: K-6 Website LinkHave an app to add? Fill out the K-6 Website Request
Appy Time / Websites
Elements 4D offers you a unique way to learn about real-life chemistry through augmented reality. Using the app, paired with paper or wood blocks, allows you to view each element in a 4D representation. You can learn facts about each element and combine two elements together to see how they react, including the catalyst, resulting compound and chemical equation.
Anatomy 4D uses augmented reality to take you on a journey inside the human body and heart. It helps you see the spatial relationships of our organs, skeleton muscles, and body systems. Experience the human body and heart in great detail by zooming in to investigate each organ in-depth with this amazing app.