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Caitlyn Robertson

Cobourg, Ontario, Canada

Live Curious, Go Beyond Google Docs?

Being open to trying new technology in the classroom, allows students (and us!) to problem solve and take risks in learning together. Exposing our students to a variety of platforms allows them to create, collaborate and communicate with their peers while navigating around the new tool.

Areas of expertise:

    Twitter Handle: @c_m_robertson


Collaborative Google Map with Fourth Grade

posted May 18, 2016, 5:30 AM by Caitlyn Robertson   [ updated May 18, 2016, 5:36 AM ]

In Grade 4 Science, we're learning all about Electricity, including “Alternative Forms of Energy”.  Feeling inspired by International Technology Coach, Jeff Utect, I set off to try my hand at building a collaborative Google map with my students.  Students were asked to find an article using Google News that highlights an alternative form of energy being used within a community. 

To scaffold the process for grade 4 students:

- Lab on alternative forms of energy

- Learned about how Google Searches work - keywords, etc.

- Created a table in google docs to organize our data (featured below)

- The following day students were given access to the google map

I invited Diana (ASFM's Digital Integration Coach) to help facilitate this lesson.  We broke the students into groups to make it more manageable for us. It allowed us to give the 1-on-1 attention students needed in building the map, since this is the first time my students had seen this. If you are interested in doing this with your class and they are a bit more experienced, take some time playing around with it on your own and you can likely introduce with a full group. 

Things that worked: breaking the task into two smaller ones, providing choice, the Google Doc organizer

What did not: the layer feature was too complicated for my grade 4s at this point. I'd love to work up to using this feature in the future.

Vlogging with Gratitde

posted May 18, 2016, 5:10 AM by Caitlyn Robertson   [ updated May 18, 2016, 5:15 AM ]

ASFM's value of the Month for January is Gratitude. I really couldn't be happier about this as I've been trying to incorporate more mindfulness into our daily routine. 
Research shows that people who express gratitude towards others are generally more happy. Inspired by Soul Pancake, I decided to ask my students to write a letter to someone who has made a positive impact on their life. Once students wrote their letter, they watched this video. There was a moment of sheer horror when they realized WHY I was showing them the video. "We have to READ the letter to them?!" ....yup! 

After a few minutes and lots of discussion, the kids decided they were up for the challenge!

The following day, students reflected on their feelings and the reactions of the recipients using prompts that they later turned into a vlog reflection on their private youtube accounts. 

Above is the block that was posted in HAIKU is help guide the students through the reflection

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