31 January, 2013

Visiting Classroom Blogs

Recently several classes began a new unit about communicating over the internet. One of the ways we can communicate, apart from the more obvious methods like Skype and Facebook, is blogging.

During the start of the unit classes were introduced to blogs used by a variety of year groups at our school, the ICT blog and other blogs created and maintained by classes in other countries.

We then spent some time practicing how to write a good comment. Among the things we needed to remember and practice were, remembering not to use "sms language" when we wrote a comment (writing "you" instead of just "u") as well as making a connection with the writer, among a variety of others.

This was the first time most of us had visited class blogs before (that weren't our own) and many of us found it quite interesting to see the variety of activities and events the bloggers wrote about. In classes with smaller children we noticed the blogs were usually written by their teacher but with lots of interesting pictures and samples of work. For classes with older children, we noticed that the children in the class did most of the things we read and looked at, including answering comments!

Eventually we started to write comments to the children who had written blog posts we were particularly interested in. While writing our comments, we had to remember to do the following:
1. Compliment the writer and thank them for writing the post.
2. Make a connection with the blogger about what you have experience of.
3. Be specific about what you like about the post.
4. Add more information about the topic.
5. Proofread and watch your punctuation and spelling. Always use your best writing!
6. Ask a question at the end.
7. Always be polite.

Later on in the unit, we will look at a variety of communication methods, keeping in mind our internet safety rules!

03 January, 2013

They're In!

After a loooong wait, our much anticipated TechKids badges are finally in Mr. Lowe's sweaty, hairy hands! :)

Starting this Tuesday, TechKids will begin working towards earning each of the 5 badges before June!

Here they are:

The winning design was by Alexander!

To go along with our brand new badges and shirts, we have a brand new website called "The Real TechKids" please drop by and find out what we're all about!

Happy New Year!

Welcome to term 2! Several classes are working on creating Stop Motion Animated movies using SAM Animation on their netbooks. We first began the unit by looking at how movies work, and the difference between photos and movies. We then organised ourselves into groups with a director and created our storyboards to go along with our simple stories. We have experimented with a wide variety of ideas, props, story ideas and materials to get the effects we were looking for. We're having a great time and we are looking forward to our movie festival in two weeks!