Saturday, March 31, 2007

Welcome

This is my first in what I hope will be a weekly blog entry. The Runkle School is doing amazing things with technology integration and I want this to be a place where I can share our great projects with the community. I also hope to keep you all up on what new Websites look promising for use in the classroom. This is a place for parents, teachers and students to check in and keep up with what is going on. I welcome your comments and hope you will take advantage of your ability to contribute your own ideas, resources and insight to this forum.

I thought I would start by talking about our biggest technology project at Runkle right now - The Brookline Book Review Podcast project. As I hope you know, students are writing reviews, recording them as podcasts and posting them to our Website. This is a great resource if you are looking for a good book. I encourage everyone to listen to these reviews, they are fun and informative. So far first, second, seventh and eighth graders have contributed their reviews. Third graders are writing their scripts right now and we hope to add their reviews by the end of the month.

We have been fortunate to get some outside recognition and support for this project. The MassCUE (Massachusetts Computer Using Educators) organization awarded us a grant for noise reducing USB headphones. Teresa and I presented about this project at a Brown University conference. And, we were just featured in an article in VOYA (The Voice of Youth Activists - The Library Magazine Serving those Who Serve Young Adults). I hope that eventually, The Brookline Book Review Podcast Project will collect review podcasts from kids all over the world.

In addition to this podcast project, fifth graders have just completed a travel to the universe podcast project. They wrote and recorded podcast travel commercials for the moon and planets in our solar system. These podcasts will be available soon for your listening pleasure.

Fourth graders have been working on a landform project using PowerPoint and have also been learning and practicing their keyboarding skills. In Kindergarten, students have been working with KidPix to draw pictures for a story. They will soon be recording their voices telling their stories. Seventh graders have learned about effective research skills and Website evaluation, have done research on a topic of their choice and are making Websites about their topics. Eighth graders just completed a travel brochure for a European country and are now using iMovie to make a travel commercial for their country. Sixth graders have learned about databases and have used some of the Brookline subscription databases to help them with their Living History Projects.

So there is technology going on everywhere and much more to do. There are so many possibilities and so many great ideas. I look forward to sharing them.
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