The Great Eclipse 2017 is coming on Monday August 21, 2017. It’s going to be epic. It’s an event we are sharing all across North America. I made a space that we can all use to share our observations, learning, projects, stories, or really anything eclipse-related.
Before, during, and after eclipse, this Flipgrid is a space we can connect student, teacher, and family voices to share this event. Even if you aren’t in school yet, this Flipgrid can be a place you can find out what your students did while they weren’t in school.
If you have the most updated version of Flipgrid on your mobile device or tablet, you can also just scan this QR code to instantly go to the topic.
Scan here with Flipgrid to share your eclipse story.
I also made a Google doc that you can print and give to classrooms to scan if they have devices available.
Click to access an easy Google doc
Once you are on the topic, simply touch the + and follow the prompts to record your voice and take a selfie. Don’t forget to tell us where you are recording from. I hope we can all learn from one another as we experience this unique event together. See you on the grid.
A few weeks ago 5th grade reading teacher, Melissa Freeman, asked if her students could have some time in the library reading picture books and informational books related to the Civil War and Civil Rights Movement. I quickly began pulling a big stack of books for them to read. We wanted some way of capturing this experience to refer back to during Social Studies time, so I’m so glad that I discovered Flipgrid!
Each 5th grade class came to the library today. I had the books spread out on tables. We started in the floor for an overview. I shared our purpose of reading books connected with our social studies content. The teacher and I both stressed that our main goal was to spend quality time reading the books and preparing to do a book talk. Flipgrid was going to be our tool to capture these book talks, but Flipgrid was not our focus. We also talked about why Flipgrid was the chosen tool. We brainstormed ideas such as the ability to go back to these book talks during social studies to find books that matched standards. Students also thought that others in the school could visit the grid to learn about some books that they might not check out on their on.
With our purpose established, I showed students an example of what a book talk video might look like. I also quickly walked through the Flipgrid screens to show what each one looked like in order to record a video. This overview took us about 15-20 minutes.
Students each went to the tables, chose their book, and found a cozy spot to read. As students finished their reading, they got index cards and pencils to write down a few notes to help them with their book talks. Finally, they got an iPad, typed in the flipgrid code, and found a quiet spot to record.
The student response to this tool in 5th grade was very positive, but they did have some suggestions for improvement:
When they held the books up to show them on the video, the words on the books were flipped backward. We did not figure out how to fix this in the recording screens.
When students submitted their video, sometimes it put the video up to 8 times on the grid. I had to manually go in and delete the extras. We are not sure why this happened to some students and not others.
Some students received a timeout error message when uploading their videos. They had to repeatedly submit the video until they got the successful upload message.
I typed all of these comments in an email and sent it to Flipgrid support. We hope that we hear some answers to these issues or see Flipgrid continue to improve. Even with the technical problems, the students all hope that their teacher and I will continue to use this tool.
Recently, I blogged about a collaborative project that I did with a Prek classroom creating shape poem. Over the past few days, these students have been coming to our BTV studio to record their poetry. Students practiced reading their poems before coming to the studio, but many chose to add additional words to their poems or even change the words when they read their poems. This is something that they try in their centers in the classroom. They have a center option of doing freestyle poetry. You can listen to Ms. Spurgeon’s introduction of the poetry project and the Prek poets by clicking the links below.
Today the Leader Librarians’ 108 books went into circulation. These students spent the last 8 weeks finding out what books students at our school are interested in reading. They divided their budget among the categories they discovered and met with vendors to look at possible books for selection. Last night, the students presented their books at our school enrichment fair. By the end of today, only 24 books were left on the shelves. Kids came in all day asking if they could check out the books and they raced one another to the display to make their selections! Here’s a video of the Leader Librarians talking about their work.