Watermelon Word Processing


Grade: 2nd

Time: Two 30-minute lab times

This project was an attempt to incorporate Henry Anker’s 2nd grade word processing lessons with something the students had already created in class.  We turned off the auto-spell check.  Students learned about text wrapping, inserting an image, changing font size/color/style.

Likes: Pre-finished draft made for easier word processing, but I wasn’t sure what was appropriate to help further edit during the data entry process.

Dislikes: Not very engaging, other than the picture import.  Finished product doesn’t look very finished. Time consuming for first quarter when students are still learning to save to server.

Spelling City

Spelling City is a wonderful website to help drill spelling words in a fun and interactive way that’s sure to increase student success.

However, it can also be used to meet technology goals for primary grade levels.  In the last two lessons using this website, students learned the following:

  • Naming files
  • Using drop-down boxes
  • Navigating a complex website
  • Maximizing/minimizing windows
  • Controlling the mouse
  • Locating keys on the keyboard
  • Refreshing a page

Quite a bit of ‘bang’ for our short computer lab buck.  Although I’m very eager to move beyond the “Remembering” portion of Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy, I want these young ones to know how to use this site backwards and forwards because I think it requires more of them than most websites geared towards children, and therefore does a better job of preparing them for using sites that allow them to create content or collaborate.  We’re working our way up the ladder! (By the way, if you haven’t seen the images and resources at iLearnTechnology about Digital Bloom’s Taxonomy, you really need to check them out!)

How to Survive 4th Grade (Student Project)

In the spirit of Kelly Tenkely’s recent tweet about a ZimmerTwins project on “How to Survive 4th Grade”, my 4th grade students took some time to learn Powerpoint basics using the same topic.  I wanted them to enjoy creating their own content, rather than get hung up on it as a research project like my 5th graders did with their Explorers ppt.

Likes: Fun way to incorporate adding slides, images, bullet points, titles, etc. Excitement about the topic from many students.  Project to share with next year’s 4th grade students.

Dislikes: Didn’t allow for enough time to complete.  Some students struggled with the topic and were unsure what to say.  Little ‘wow’ factor- but since I’m not a fan of ppt to begin with, I shouldn’t be surprised.  I need to find a presentation method to teach that I actually like and enjoy. (Prezi, for example, or Glogster even.)

Comments: A good number of students said something to the effect of “don’t make your teacher mad” or else they won’t like you and the rest of they year will go badly.  Need to think how to address that one in the future, because I think it’s an unfair assessment on their part. Try using Keynote next year.