News from the Ixonia Elementary Library & Computer Lab
The school year is off to a great start and some exciting things are happening in the Ixonia Elementary Library. This newsletter will share some information about what's going on in both the library and the computer lab.
Meet Mr. Lehman
My name is Chad Lehman (pronounced LAYman) and I am the new Library Media Specialist and Learning Resource Teacher at Ixonia. I have been teaching for about 15 years - some as a 3rd grade teacher and the rest as a library media specialist, all in the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District. At Ixonia, I get to work with all of the students in the library and computer lab each week. I also plan to get into the classrooms to help teachers and students integrate technology into the curriculum as much as possible. I'm at Ixonia Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays this year. Mrs. Curro will again be working in the library each day to help with book checkout and her many other duties at Ixonia. I'm thrilled to be a part of this great learning community and can't wait to get to know the students better!
We celebrated Dot Day in the library and computer lab all week long. International Dot Day is an exciting event centered around the book The Dot, by Peter H. Reynolds. The books is about students making their mark in the world and how a simple gesture can really help another person. This week, all classes watched a video of the story read to them by Peter H. Reynolds, the author. Students don't often get to hear authors read their own books, so this was a special opportunity. Students had the chance to show off their creativity this week to continue the Dot Day celebration. Read below to see what each grade level did.
In the lab, the kindergarten students worked on mouse skills this week. They practiced clicking and dragging using a drawing program called Tux Paint. Students were able to create pictures using a variety of colors, lines, and shapes. Students were encouraged to use dots of varying sizes to create their pictures. Getting the basics of using a mouse in critical for future activities in the computer lab.
First graders also had the opportunity to show off their creativity as well. Mrs. Timm's class created dot pictures in the computer lab using their choice of Tux Paint or the Paint program. Almost all of the students decided to use Tux Paint to create their images. After saving all of their images, the pictures were put into a video for all to see. Mrs. Muroni's class used the Paint program to design a big dot to show off their creativity. Again, the images were put into a video. See below.
Dot Day - Mrs. Timm
Our Dots - Mrs. Muroni
The second graders also used the Paint program to create a huge dot and then color and decorate their dot any way they wanted. These students really did an amazing job. We have new computers in the lab this year and they have touch screens. Many of the students decided it was easier to design and color their giant dot by using their finger on the screen, rather than using the mouse. Their pictures were also saved and made into videos.
Our Dots, for Dot Day - Mr. Peters
2nd Grade Dots - Mrs. Hoffman
Two of the third grade classes started their Dot Day activities in Art and completed them in the library. Ms. Ellis and Ms. Meschler's class painted water color dots and then cut their dots into four pieces, shared the pieces with classmates, and created a new, collaborative dot. Take a look at some of the pictures below. Mrs. Dilley's class worked in the computer lab to create their amazing dots. Unfortunately, the video displaying their work in currently unavailable. Ms. Ellis's class also participated in a Mystery Skype call with a 5th grade class in Georgia. Using video chat, each class asked the other students yes or no questions trying to figure out what state they were located in. This was a fun way for students to use their geography and map skills to learn about another state!
3rd Grade Mystery Skype
The fourth graders celebrated Dot Day by making their dots come alive. Students used a free Augmented Reality iOS app called colAR Mix that took their normal, colorful dots, and made them into 3D objects. Students colored their dot on a special piece of paper and then used the app for a fun surprise. The students thought this was very exciting and many students even created a second or third dot!
Dot Day - colAR app
This year will be a fun year in both the library and computer lab. In fact, I try not to think of these two places as separate spaces. To me, it's all one learning space. Students will have the opportunity to learn and great using a variety of devices, from the desktop computers in the lab, to iPod touches, laptops, Chromebooks, and iPads. Extending their classroom learning and sharing their work with the world will be something I plan to do a lot this year. From what I've seen already, the students at Ixonia can do great things - I want the world to be witness their work. --Mr. Lehman