Tuesday, February 28, 2012
We did a project with Storybird.com where students did a character analysis from the book Reservation Blues. To show their understanding of character motivations, students created an original scene involving the character. They needed to use literary devices similar to those in the book and reveal something new about the character.
A few students recorded their storybirds. Here are a few examples of students who met all of the requirements:
This was a really fun project, and students at all levels enjoyed it. Plus, the teacher accounts at Storybird make it really easy.
We then scanned the drawings, inserted them in a powerpoint, published as a pdf, and uploaded to issuu.com for the final presentation. See all of them at the project blog.
This worked, but was not perfect. I think the project was confusing as students were unclear about how to represent what the characters would be thinking about outside of the scenes that were happening in the play itself.
If I were to do it again, I would have students jump into the site early on to get used to how it works. Maybe I would have them simply represent what was happening in a scene they enjoyed and then send the slides they create to my evernote account just as a way to monitor comprehension while we are reading.
Then, the final project could be more focused on creating a well developed graphic novel scene to represent their character analysis. I would probably leave it more open as to where they place the scene. Could be a deleted scene from the book, or it could be a scene set in the future. Regardless, they would need to reflect on one character, and then show how the events in the book shaped their life in some way. This is where the real analysis could shine through.
Friday, February 17, 2012
I was invited to participate on Youth Voices, a student blogging site created by the National Writing Project in New York, and excitedly created a project for my Media Studies classes.
Students created a list of questions they were interested in, researched this topic from two sources from the internet, and created a News Article to present their information. Then, they uploaded their work as a blog discussion.
Paul Allison, the director for the site, liked the project, and allowed me to created a Mission from it for other teachers to use. All student's work from the project is featured and linked on the left side of the page.