Sunday, August 28, 2016

We Are Off And Running

We are entering our 2nd full week of school and I have seen each class two times. So far we have reviewed our Missouri Reading Award Programs, checked out for the first time, learned how to access digital materials at home, set up Google Classrooms, and become familiar with Overdrive ebooks.  Mrs. Haynes met with each class before their second checkout (first with their classroom teacher) and chatted with the kiddos about checkout expectations and a couple of other new things she is working on.  She is so good about being proactive instead of reactive to what we know happens each year in our library.

Tomorrow each grade level will begin their first maker unit.  These units will include inquiry, mini lessons as necessary to teach/review note-taking, selecting best sources, questioning, citing sources, locating materials in our library and on our website, and instruction/exploration on databases and apps we will be using.

This is our plan...

Fifth graders are designers and will begin working through our new Lego WeDo 2.0 sets and projects.  We will then use what we have learned to incorporate Lego WeDo into our Rube Goldberg Machines.

Fourth graders are creative thinkers and will be learning about and building catapults.

Third grade will begin a year of inventing by learning about inventors and then become inventors themselves.

Second grade starts a year of robotics, programming, and coding.  We will start with simple paper & pencil coding and move into more advanced coding requiring critical thinking skills.

First grade begins a year of storytelling using Legos as inspiration.  I have not purchased the Lego StoryStarter kits so we will be using our MakerSpace Legos and plates.  Creative thinking and presentation is our focus to start the year.

Kindergarteners are builders and will be reading Missouri Building Block nominees and will then share what they loved about the book by building with Legos, Keva Planks, TinkerToys, Zoobs and Attribute Blocks.  We also are working hard to learn our library numbers, how to use shelf markers, and the process to check out books.

Monday, August 22, 2016

We love books!

We are a school of readers!  Dozens of kids read award books over the summer, kids can't wait to check out for the first time, we see some kids everyday to checkout new books, teachers value the importance of a great class read aloud, and as a school we spend the last 20 minutes of our day reading for pleasure.  









Sunday, August 21, 2016

I Love A Brand New School Year

I started taking photos of my library for the new school year and realized just how much has changed since May.  At the end of each school year, Mrs. Haynes and I always have some ideas about what to change in the library based on the kid's library survey that they take each January.  Mrs. Haynes fabulously captures the kids' thoughts and ideas each year and shares with the kids what changes will be made.  So, the photos you see below represent the kids' input and some other ideas that Mrs. Haynes and I had to make things a little easier for kids to find what they want in our library.

This isn't new, but the question is!
New signage for the genre sections.



Our focus board.
We gathered our maker books (and MAKE magazine) and placed them next to the MakerSpace.
The kids said that we needed more search stations in the library so we added two more.  Still waiting for the laptops from our tech. dept.  They are busy getting everyone in the district their device.
An additional gathering spot in the Everybody section.  
We moved the Biography section and organized the books a bit differently so kids can find what they want more quickly.  We grouped presidents, innovators, inventors, artists, authors, musicians and so on together...Mrs. Haynes idea! 
New signage for the Cave where kids hang out and read.
New signage in the MakerSpace to help 
identify areas.




Mrs. Haynes and I share what we are reading.  We then write a quick summary, our opinion of the book, and where kids can find it.  By the end of the year the library doors are covered in books!


After reading LAUNCH by Juliani and Spencer, I decided this model would guide us in our Inquiry and Making design process.
Painted my dad's old law office chair.

A grant written by 3 teacher-librarians will be giving my students access to so many great resources.  My 5th graders will be working with Lego WeDo 2.0 and my 3rd graders (and I) will be learning all about Ozobots.  The three schools are sharing materials so my other grade levels will experience other robotics materials throughout the year.  Thank you LSDF!

With funding from our summer MakerKid's camp, I was able to purchase some Lego plates to use for storytelling, building, marble mazes and so much more.  I have needed these for a couple of years now!

A few years ago we received a grant to purchase multiple copies of books for student bookclubs.  These books are now out on the shelves for the kids to form bookclubs with friends.  Thank you LSDF!

We added some wobble chairs for kids who need to be moving!
Found this huge poster at Five Below.  It will be a great way to give kids a break when they are a bit over stimulated.
Lastly, an update to a door leading to the MakerSpace from the hallway.




Monday, August 1, 2016

MakerKid's Summer Camp Days 3, 4, and 5

Day 3 of Summer MakerKid's Camp was our cardboard creation day.  I truly think the entire week could have just focused on cardboard and the kids would have been thrilled.  
(Something to consider for next year)

Building a car for a mini figure

Glue guns save the day
Day 4 was a day of circuit exploration.  Kids worked in stations and really loved working with Mrs. Haynes' daughter in the LED card making station.  Anna taught the kids all about circuits and then using 3v batteries, LEDs and copper tape, they created a quick card that would light up.   Mrs. Haynes worked the littleBits station.
LED cards with Anna Haynes

littleBits with Mrs. Haynes
Day 5 was a day of movie making.  Each pair of kids learned about stop-motion, selected/built characters, wrote a storyboard and filmed a great stop-motion video using the Lego Movie app.  This was a very busy day of wrapping up the week and unfortunately didn't get pics of the kids working on their stop-motion projects. 

Of course, each day also allowed time for the kids to work on their own projects as well.
Dream Catcher

Creating a character from a favorite video game

Creating a fishbowl that could hang around your neck like a necklace

Cutting ribbon to go on the handle bars of her cardboard bicycle
On Friday, the kids had a chance to share all their projects with one another.  One change for next year will be building in time for parents to come in and share in their child's learning.  
Sharing-Sophia sewed koozies for her family's water bottles

Amanda sharing her finished dream catcher

Katie sharing her Japanese fish pond

Cardboard creation complete with side mirrors, lights, and door handles

Grant sharing his 3D model

Addi sharing the car she created for Bananas the Gorilla

Grady shows how his marble run works

Riley explains his robot 

Showing off this big time marble race

Jonas sharing his completed robotic arm

I am so appreciative of Mrs. Haynes and Anna Haynes helping our LC kids have a great week.  I am already reflecting on the week and how to improve the camp for next summer.  There is so much to learn between now and then.  

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Lewis & Clark MakerSpace


 Tour our MakerSpace and Production Studio.  I truly hope it is helpful to you.  Please contact me if you have any questions!  

Day 2: Summer MakerKid's Camp

Today we started out with a building challenge where the kids could select their choice of materials. This is helpful to have going as the kids arrive at different times.  

 We then spent the next hour and a half working with a few different robots...we all loved Cubelets and our new BlueBots!  Sphero and Ollie were great fun also.  Mrs. Haynes and I have loved working with a smaller group of kids than usual.  We are noticing how differently kids approach the very same challenge and how they go about their work!

Following those different stations, we all paired up and worked with Dash and all of the different attachments.  We were telling stories, launching catapults, writing songs with the Xylo app, and using legos to create cute Dash characters.  

To end the day, we spent time on the kids' personal projects.  Time flies even though we have 3 hours.  We don't even stop to take any breaks!  Tomorrow we will be designing and making furniture out of recycled materials.

Here are some photos of our morning...
Programming BlueBot

Testing our program

Cubelets success

Sphero work



Extending the course and adding to the program

Building Cubelet robots...so many options


Some obstacle courses look different than others!

Learning about Dash and his launcher

Dash as a rabbit.  The girls developed a story about their rabbit-he was eating books