Note: This year I am blogging weekly reflections at my school site (weskids.com) in order to provide more transparency in my teaching for parents, students, and the community (local and global). I will be cross-posting most of the entries here at Bit By Bit as well. You can see the original posts at the “Reflections by Mr. S” blog.
Students in Grade 2 have dug deep into research over the past weeks. We are using the site, Facts4me.com (http://facts4me.com/) in order to collect facts about animals. Students have been working in groups to gather the following:
Whether or not the animal is endangered, and if so, why?
- What is its diet?
- What is its habitat?
- Who are its predators?
- What are its features?
- Other interesting facts
Students are learning how to put the facts they find into their own words and decide which facts are most important to share. Once the facts have been collected, students decide who is going to present each fact in the final presentation and then rewrite their facts on notecards. Groups are deciding whether they want to create their own artwork to accompany the final product, or use the “open source” photos from Facts4me.com.
The final product will be a movie made in an application on the iPads called, “Puppet Pals” and will eventually be published on our website. We have Rodeo practice happening throughout this process, so the final project will take a bit of time to finish.
Students have been thoroughly engaged in their research and are really getting to know the facts about their chosen animal as they work on editing and rewriting.
Things you can do at home with your scholar:
- First off, Facts4me.com is an amazing site, with succinct facts and easy readability. Unfortunately, the school only has an account for use at school from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. However, Facts4me.com offers an amazing Family Deal of 24/7 access to its huge collection of nonfiction books for a yearly price of $20! Check out the site and see if it’s something you’d like at home (for the price of one book, you’ll get hundreds!).
- Ask your student to tell you the facts she/he remembers about their animal.
- Explore with your student other websites, books, internet sites related to the animal they are studying.