Cornerstone Community School Grade 2 AT&T Classroom highlights - week 2

Following-up from last week’s video chat with Buncee EDU in New York City, this past week the second graders gained hands-on experience with the platform’s tools and features. The Buncee EDU platform offers an interactive digital canvas with thematic background templates for creating stories, books, presentations, cartoons/comics, pamphlets, posters, etc. Students are able to customize the templates by adding animations, pictures, text, drawings, and videos. The Buncee EDU platform also offers an extensive gallery of searchable media that students can add to their projects and students also have the option to import external media from their computers or other websites. This past week the second graders used Buncee EDU to create a special project for their grandparents that included images, text, and animations. The second graders are also using Buncee EDU to create a digital version of their Authors’ Tea Stories that includes images, text and recorded narration of the student reading his/her story.

This past week the second graders were introduced to two new tools for writing and project work. Educreations is a multi-platform tool that allows the computer or tablet to function as a digital dry erase board. The tool’s features enable the device to record the student’s voice and his/her writing and drawing which can be saved for playback. Once a student finishes their assignment or project in Educreations, they can save their work and then access it from any device with a web browser. This past week the second graders used Educreations as a writing tool to reflect on their morning Devotion.

This past week the second graders were also introduced to Padlet, a free web-based tool that functions as a virtual wall or bulletin board where people can exchange thoughts on a common topic. Posts drafted to a Padlet wall can encompass different types of media including text, images, hyperlinks, audio, and video. This past week Mrs. McFeaters posted a reflection prompt for the students regarding morning Chapel on the class Padlet wall and bookmarked the Padlet wall’s URL in the class’s Symbaloo. The second graders accessed the Padlet wall through their Symbaloo and then each drafted their written reply to the prompt. After students finished writing, they came back together as a class to view and share their posts.

Mrs. McFeaters also created a second Padlet wall that the children used for an online class literature discussion in which they replied to a question prompt asking students to predict what might happen next in the story The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate.

The collaborative nature of a Padlet wall provides a rich opportunity for writing instruction. Because students know their work will be shared, they tend to be more motivated as they approach their writing and they also become more aware of being accountable for the content and the quality of their work. The tool also helps to strengthen the class as a learning community as students learn more about each other’s ideas, interests, etc., as they read their classmates’ posts.

Also this week, the second graders worked with two digital games on the Matific website for practice with geometry concepts. Guess What? is a math game that provides practice in identifying polygons and Polygolf focuses on geometric concepts for Angle, Edge, Polygon, and Vertex.

The second graders ended their week with an introduction to the basic elements of coding and programming. The students started with Daisy the Dinosaur, an iOS app that utilizes a game-life format to engage children in learning to combine and sequence drag-and-drop steps to make the dinosaur move, jump, shrink and grow. Building from their work with Daisy, the students also worked with Scratch Jr, a free tablet app that utilizes visual block language very similar to the Daisy interface. Scratch Jr was developed by the MIT Media Lab specifically for young children ages 5 and over to provide opportunities for children to express themselves creatively by building their own games and designing animations and interactive stories.


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