Okay, at this point in the year my students are in the midst of state testing. We've not had regular classes for a few days because of the testing schedule, have shortened classes today, and by the time they get to me they are both exhausted and bored. So, how can I keep them motivated and still work from a productive language arts angle…? The answer is a project - not popping in the proverbial movie. So, I do an end of year project each year. I try to make it fun, but still meaningful with a real audience, etc.
This year's project will not exactly be revealed today (mystery is a good motivator), but we will begin the process.
To open class today I will ask students if they know what 2013's "Word of the Year" was according to the Oxford Dictionary? Hint: Check out this one -arguably the most popular taken so far..
Of course, it's "selfie".
In honor of the word of the year (and because I know they'll love it) we are going to use the webcam on our laptops to take a selfie. Here's the twist -they'll take the selfie while holding their favorite book read this year.
I'll ask students, "Okay, so what was the best book you read this year?" They should have an idea already because I told students to be thinking about this weeks ago. So, I'll remind them, "This could be from your independent reading or from something we read in class, but you must have read the entire book."
At this point, I'll review the selfie idea, how to take a selfie using the laptop webcam and allow students to go to the school library or use books from our classroom library to take their selfie. They will be given a ten minute time limit to return to their seat with the selfie on screen.
(By the way, I did not, but should you choose to use the.."but first, let me take a selfie" song. Check the lyrics first. It isn't something you'll want to play in its' entirety.)
Next, I'll walk students through uploading to their google doc account and ask that they share it with me.
To wrap up class, I will display the pics shared with me on screen. I do this for two reasons, one to make sure I got one from everyone and two because the students love it.
I must have a selfie from everyone to prepare for class tomorrow.