Wednesday, October 26, 2011

When Parents Can't Access Their Child's Digital Work

My students' parents don't all have internet access. This is really a shame because they are doing some really good work on their blogs. Their latest assignment is to write a story and add digital elements to it. One of the early activities was taken by Jabiz Raisdana's class blog.

On the post Episode #1-Mood and Setting the students were asked to write a paragraph that gives the setting of a story. The kicker is that they have to set a mood with the paragraph, not just identify the time and place. As you can imagine, I jumped on the assignment and had my students participate as well. They created some great paragraphs. Check out their blogs here if you want to read some.

Unfortunately, there was a lack of transfer between that lesson and their creative writing projects. I have seen no evidence that any of the students have taken what they have learned and applied it to this new project. I decided that needed to be addressed.

Today my students were told to create a picture that can be used with their story. They had to use Microsoft Paint. While it isn't the best program to draw with, every Windows computer has it and the students can add it to their digital toolbelt. Below is an amazing picture drawn by one of my eighth grade students for this project.

The pictures will be printed onto card stock the size of a postcard. The students will then rewrite the first paragraph of their stories. This time they will address their lack of mood in the setting. They will take that paragraph and write it on the back of the picture which will then be mailed to the parents as a postcard.

This will allow parents to get an idea about how the students are using their time in my classroom. They will be able to see the picture that the students created digitally and they will have the first paragraph of the story the students are writing.

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