Always a Family
Story Corps is a non-profit organization making recordings and animated stories of personal conversations. First, let me say that I listened to many of the stories and they pretty much all made me cry. They are very emotionally loaded, as people are talking about where they first met, war veterans talking about their experiences overseas, or family secrets being revealed.
The story I choose to write about is Always a Family. This story is about the phone call Monique got from her ex-husband, Michael, on September 11th, calling to say goodbye. He was in the 103rd floor of the World Trade Center.
The story is heart breaking, as we all know how this will end. Though they were divorced there is no doubt in my mind they were a wonderful loving family. They had two kids together and Michael wants Monique to tell them that he loves them.
The visuals make the story seem more real. Though it is a cartoon the images of the family together makes the story even more touching. The audio, which is the heart of the story, is a monologue of the surviving ex-wife and mom. I believe it is the combination of audio AND the cartoon images that makes all of these stories so moving.
It is National Diabetes Day and I’m feeling a little torn….
We are wearing blue, we are posting pictures on social media, and we are planning get togethers with friends and families also living with Type 1, celebrating with ice cream, on my daughter’s request.
Why are we CELEBRATING a disease?
I am celebrating the Diabetes COMMUNITY, the CONNECTION, and the AWARENESS we are making on this day.
The FRIENDS I have made, the FRIENDS my daughter has made. This thing certainly would have been a lot harder to tackle was it not for all of them.
I am also secretly CELEBRATING a CURE! Though there is none [yet] we are closer to a CURE today than we were last year!
So HAPPY DIABETES DAY, Everybody!
The level of skills the students will develop from this lesson plan will be to construct a product to share with others. By designing something together, though working individually, the final product will display their collaborative newfound knowledge. The booklet will inspire the students to communicate with family members about what they have learned as well.
I had this idea that it would be perfect for my students to actually make an informational booklet to print and bring home during the month of November for Diabetes Awareness month. However, I experienced some issues…. Not many of the fancy apps were designed to print easily (and inexpensive)…. Maybe I was just a little too set in my ways…
Another story making application I came across is Book Creator, which seems very similar to Create Booklet I used, just not free. To cover some of the other groups within Creation & Editing Tools one can utilize various text-to-video apps where the students generate their own cartoon-based videos, such as the video I’ve previously shared HERE. (The third video).
Another very interesting application is ZooBurst where one can make digital 3D pop-up books! In this app one can upload your own images or choose from their library. Being able to upload your own images makes it much more relevant for health education, rather than many of the book creating apps where one can only utilize their pictures.
Here is a short tutorial on ZooBurst:
I have spent significant time online attempting to find the perfect (inexpensive) booklet-making application. I’ve experimented with various book creators such as Snapfish, Smashwords, and Storybird. The best thing I’ve found so far is a downloadable app called Create Booklet through TheKeptPromise.
The way it works is that one can simply choose Create Booklet as part of the PDF option during printing. Unfortunately it does not make an amazing online version with beautiful imagery nor is it interactive like Storybird. However, it can help students create a booklet by the end of class. The downside is it will have to be worked on as a regular word document and it does not have the collaboration opportunity as some of the online application versions I’ve been exploring.
However, since I wanted the students to be able to print a booklet at the end of class, this is the way to go. Each topic the students pick out of the hat can be worked on individually. Everyone gets to utilize just one page and they can add an image as well.
Font and size will be stipulated in the directions of the project to make the booklet consistent and flowing.
I will hand out the assignment as A BOOKLET as a way for the students to get an idea of what the final project will look like.
Storybird is an application where one can make specific storybooks. The exciting thing about Storybird is that a teacher can invite the whole class as collaborators.
In my lesson plan about Diabetes, I can generate multiple topics to be covered. Each student will pick a topic by drawing it out of a hat (literally!)
I made an assignment within the application to be shared with my students, asking them to make their very own Diabetes Awareness Book/Booklet to be handed out at school during the month of November (Diabetes Awareness Month).
However, the downside with Storybird, is that one cannot upload any images. This means the students have to choose from Storybird’s library of very artful images, though not much focus on diabetes or health.
I found this to be a deal breaker as I do not quite see how I can utilize this tool connects to the content. I am choosing a different way for my students to publish their Diabetes Awareness booklet.
After reading Coding in Elementary School Classroom by Janice Mark, I have some mixed feeling regarding utilizing coding in the classroom. I can see there are advantages of learning how to code, as most learning is beneficial. However, the amount of time spent on learning how to code, the brainstorming that goes into it, and the trial and error that is necessary to be successful, could be valuable time spent elsewhere. Are there valuable lessons from learning by trial and error and collaborating with other students? Absolutely! Can those who are interested in coding equally learn this at home? Absolutely!
Not all children are mesmerized by how to code computers and building computer games. So let it be an elective in middle school. I’m sure it will be appealing for most students. But I know my daughter wouldn’t touch that with a ten-foot pole and would be very happy in her interior fashion design class instead.
See the article I am referring to, published in Learning & Leading with Technology (2014): Coding in Elementary School
(In)-class Activity #2: Share Your Point of View by Discussing your Thoughts on Creation & Editing Tools
My initial reaction to looking over the variety of tools in the category Creation & Editing Tools, Part 1 was that these tools seem suitable for students with special interests.
The tools most appealing to me are the book creating tools such as Snapfish, Smashwords, and Storybird. Creating books or stories can easily be incorporated into most PBL units, including mine about Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes.
I am curious as to how the drawing applications and 3D modeling work. I think I can incorporate those into Health Education.
I am very confused on how spending one or two class lessons making a simple video game can be incorporated into classes such as history, ELA, or Health Education.
(In)-class Activity #1: Create Your Own Pong Video Game Using Scratch
I Created a Level 5 Pong With an Added Angled Challenge
I’ve just spent 3 hours making a very primitive video game.
Did I have fun? Absolutely.
Did i learn much about computer programming? Maybe.
Can I see how this can be incorporated into Health Education? Not so much… c
Play my game HERE