Walking away



I’ve spent a lot of time dreading writing this post. I even managed to leave Angola and carry this task on with me to Brazil because I couldn’t think of any ideas that were worth writing about. Mostly because I was thinking about this as a product instead of a process. I was quite concerned about what my students’ project was going to be and how I was going to integrate technology into it. All of a sudden I had what Oprah would call a “ah ha” moment: the process!!!! What  I’ve relearned this week? Sometimes you just have to walk away from it all.


IDEA 1– I am thinking of doing my project on our writer’s workshop writing process unit with a focus on publishing. Now that our iPads are up and running and our students are more familiar with apps like Show Me, Puppet Pals and Scribble Press, I think that it will be great to have them publish their work through different means, not just paper and pencil. What concerns me about this unit is that my students are quite young and that they will be able to troubleshoot issues on their own. This leads me to think that I may have to spend the first few months of my project just getting students familiar with the apps themselves as well as how to combine different apps to get an end product.
This will require me to think carefully about how I am going to upskill these students since we don’t really have enough iPads to have everyone working on them at the same time.  I may have to flip my classroom during the school day: some kids working on the Ipads with my help while others are watching a video and working on something else.

The garden of forking paths by Craig Cloutier

The garden of forking paths by Craig Cloutier

 IDEA 2– My second idea involves redesigning our sharing the planet unit. During this unit we look at how animals are interconnected and our responsibility towards them. One of my concerns with this project is that I could do so much with technology that it will be hard to choose exactly the best way to go about it. I can also see problem based learning being one way to set up the whole unit and then use the technology to document everything we learned. The other concern about this idea is that it would require so many different skill sets from my students (communication, presentation, writing, technology, research, organizational) that I am not even sure how to begin. The good thing about going with this idea is that our animal unit will only start 10 weeks into the school year and I would have tons of time to set the whole thing up and get my students basic skill set ready. This unit could actually be the culmination if everything we’ve worked on in Year 2 and that is pretty exciting.

One thought on “Walking away”

  1. hey ju, how are you doing with this?…decided on one of the above?…the more I hear about IB PYP units the more I like…MYP guys should hang out with PYP guys more often on PD days with the intention of fostering greater collaboration…if you decide to go with the interconnected animals unit we could have a chat about using the laser cutter to print acrylic animals that your kids identify with….they could draw these in a basic CAD program and we could mass cut them (as keychains/wall mural/whatever)….what do you think?

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