Monday, February 15, 2016

Displays and an EdCamp

I got creative this month by moving loads of dictionaries to the teacher resource closet, and by turfing some paperback dictionaries that should have gone home with third graders in years past.  By clearing out an extra set of shelves, I was able to make the nook below for more display space.  I put the Valentine books there, so that I didn't have to move or take down our Black History Month book display.


 (I got to put out "Love Letters" by Adoff Arnold - My absolute favorite!  
Someone already checked it out.)

(Only a third of the books we have on display)

I added this "I love our library because..." interactive display to encourage students to fill in hearts with their reasons for loving our library.  The small print tells students that I will use their paper hearts for our "Read Across America" display.  I've already received lots of great responses!  


While working at our Forsyth County Technology Fair on Saturday, January 30th, another volunteer mentioned the upcoming EdCamp that I attended on the following Saturday, February 6th.  I roped Miss Grimes, a fourth grade teacher at my school, into attending with me.  Our school ITS, Angela Wilson, was volunteering at this EdCamp, which was conveniently being held at Lambert High School, right next to our elementary school.  
(Angela Wilson, Kristina Grimes, Me)

 We attended multiple breakout sessions to learn about:

  • ClassFlow and the tools available to students for answering
  • Everfi, which is free to schools, and focuses on financial literacy, STEM education, and civic engagement (which seemed to be more for middle and high school than elementary)
  • Literacy tools such as www.noredink.com which makes editing practice fun by allowing students to choose TV, movie, or book characters to be part of their practice
  • Makerspace ideas (which made me jealous of media specialists in a flexible schedule)
  • Genius Hour - letting students research and share about a topic of their own choosing
  • Google Apps for Educators (GAFE), which Miss Grimes ended up leading most of, since there weren't defined facilitators or group leads.  We did hear from Mr. Greg Bagby, (@Gregbagby) who was also in attendance that session.  He shared about Google cardboard, his blog, books he had been reading, and Mystery Skype.  We didn't learn more than we already knew.  We were the "experts" in that session.

Before we left though, we did both win a Promethean drink cup, and a second raffle prize.  I won 6 months to Nearpod (fun, online student quizzes) and Kristina won a free online professional development course.  It was an interesting experience.   I still need to delve into my Nearpod prize!