Monday, September 16, 2013

In the Media Center (Week 2)

Elementary Media Center
In the Media Center is going to be a new regularly appearing post from me. I plan to talk about what my students and I did the past week during their media classes. I am a K-12 media specialist who spends half days at the Elementary building and half days at the Middle School/High School building in our district of approximately 1300 students.

This semester I am starting my days at the Elementary building and seeing fifth graders and third graders on a four day rotation (50 minute classes) and traditional first and second graders on an alternate day rotation (25 minute classes). Our elementary school has a fixed schedule where all students in a grade level attend "specials" (art, media, music, and phy. ed.) at the same time so that their teachers have a common preparation time.

Fifth Grade:

This week the fifth graders practiced logging on to the computers and to Google Apps for Education using their own usernames and passwords. They also checked their email to find out what the new assignment would be. While problem solving for the few kids who couldn't log on for one reason or the other, the kids chose "cool" backgrounds for their emails. We also set up signature files.

The main focus of this class was learning to use the new Follett Destiny Library Catalog. The students needed to log on using...wait for it!...their same usernames and passwords. Then we learned how to search, check what we have out, make lists, and place holds.

The last class of the week started a new round of lessons when I shared a document with them via Google Drive. They had to make a copy and share it back to me. The document was all about choosing keywords. They worked with a partner to answer the questions and to analyze how they got their results. I got the lesson from Common Sense Media which has some nice lessons on a variety of topics relating to digital citizenship.

Third Grade:

Third graders again practiced logging on to the computers. We also learned how to use Follett Destiny this week. They learned what their user names and passwords were. Then we practiced searching and learned how to search by AR level. Third graders needed reminders to insert the decimal point in their levels and we had to talk about the difference between 2.1 and 21. They also learned how to make a list but I am saving teaching them how to place a hold on a book until later in the semester.

Our new round of lessons began on Friday with the students getting ready to make a reading poster. We will be using Motivator at Big Huge Labs to complete the poster. Today we paired up and took pictures of each other holding our favorite books. Each student had a chance to use the digital cameras. After the pictures were taken, students were excited to have some "free choice" time in the computer lab to play educational games.

Second Graders:

Our Monday-Tuesday story this week was Joe Bright and the Seven Genre Dudes by Jackie Mims Hopkins which kicked off our study of genres of books. They had just been talking about the Realistic Fiction genre in their classrooms which made a nice tie-in. Our Wednesday story was Alpha Betti by Carlene Morten which let us practice our alphabetizing skills too.

In the lab this week, we learned how to use Arcademic Skill Builders to play math games. We also learned how to create a game so that we would just be able to play with our friends. There was a lot of noise and excitement as the students raced to see who knew their math facts the fastest.

First Grade:

Our Monday-Tuesday stories this week were This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen and Sleep Like a Tiger by Mary Logue which kicked off our Caldecott unit. We will be reading Caldecotts from newest to oldest for our stories this semester.

On Wednesday, I shared Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger and One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo. We looked at some of the pictures in Creepy Carrots but will read the whole book later.

In the lab this week, we learned how to find our folder of games and went to ABCya to play word and number games this week.

And that is how the second week went in the Elementary Media Center.

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