Creating Literacy Centers, Part 2: Using Multi-Media

Using Multi-Media to Inspire Learning


Hi Y’all!

   Last time, I discussed (in an example) that many kids were having difficulty understanding the concept of cause and effect in my class. Then, I found some topics from my curriculum that I could use to create centers. Now, I am going to use those topics to find or create multi- media centers that correlate to my fictitious XYZ curriculum.

Glitter Words

Science: Pollution
A Breathe of Fresh Air

Click to access c4kairfl11.pdf

New York State Conservationist for Kids magazine

Create a Poster
Print out the pages and place the magazine at a center. In pairs, students read the magazine articles. Each learner finds some reasons for air pollution as well as and pollution’s impact on the Earth. Then, the partners can create a poster together (like the one on page 5) showing good ozone, bad ozone, factories, power plants, fires, trucks and buses.

Social Studies: The Silk Road
The Silk Road Lesson Plan

Click to access Rsrc_001878.pdf

Provided by the Art Institute of Chicago Department of Museum Education

Travel Journal
The Silk Road Lesson Plan by the Art Institute of Chicago Department of Museum Education has some great ideas. I loved the idea of a travel journal. I thought having your learners create a travel journal would be another great center.
Learner pretend to travel the Silk Road either as a merchant or a missionary. They can describe and draw their insights and some cases of cause and effect on the trade route. Completed travel journals can be placed on a table or hung on a wall for others to read.

Language Arts: Expository Text on Natural Disasters
Facts about Hurricanes
Facts about Tornadoes
Gather different natural disaster text at a center, such as the above print outs. Learners can choose one topic for a report. Have individual students pretend they are a newscaster or meteorologist explaining the cause of a faux or real natural disaster, such as a flood happening now, and its effects. Students can create a recording, video, scrap book of photos or PowerPoint in this activity to show to other class members.

Mathematics: Money Problems Involving Interest
Practical Money Skills

    At this center, provide each student with a bank account book. Sometimes, your local bank might donate lined record books to your students. Each students has a weekly allowance which can be drawn out of a hat. The center has catalogs of various merchandise. Students decide how much they will save or spend over the course of two or three weeks. State that the bank will give interest for money saved. If a student saves only 50 cents a day, a savings account could grow to over  $182 in one year. After two weeks, students reflect on their allowance spending or saving and the reasons for the final amounts in their faux bank accounts.

 As an intervention, view the following videos and discuss cause and effect.

Ormie the Pig

Cause and Effect Review Lesson for Elementary Students!

If you have any questions or comments about literacy, I’d love, love, love to hear from you!

Glitter Words
@ TiePlay Educational Resources

For more ideas, freebies and resources, check out Lynn’s blog and stores.

Great Apps that Allow Students to “Tell the Story” with Multi-Media

Lights. Camera. Action!  Getting your students involved in projects that bring literature to life in the classroom is a challenging and rewarding endeavour. Daunting, I know, but have no fear; technology can come to your rescue! Whether in the classroom or homeschooling, here are some highlights of  apps that  can help you set up  multimedia projects that will really engage their students while producing videos that will be fun to share with their parents and peers.  Now let’s get storytelling !

  • Smoovie is a stop animation app that has all the basics covered. This cool app allows students to use ipads to take photos, move, edit, and delete frames easily. With just a few simple commands, they can then play the frames back at different speeds, add titles and music.  The friendly controls allow the users to switch between the camera, editing and playback modes with ease.  My students worked in small groups to create this video summary of the first chapters of The Ultimate Treasure Quest 1: The Jewel of Peru.  They loved it and learned so much as they had to read, summarize, create a script, act out the scene and read fluently to add voice over and cooperate to produce scenes, puppets, movement and camera shots. A story telling project with plenty of learning embedded!
  • If you’re looking for a project that can incorporate both student shot video footage and  photos and quickly turn them into something to share, then try  Animoto or Magisto.  Both ipad apps allow students to shoot video using the ipad, then  quickly add  format effects, text and music.  The videos can then be shared via Facebook or email.  These apps would be ideal for quick chapter reviews, mock newscasts, current affairs reports ,students demonstrations, or coverage of school events.  What fun for students to be able  to tell their “story” with  all the bells and whistles pre- built in.  These apps create a quick professional looking project with minimal input time.  Just what we are looking for in the classroom!
  • Finally, if your wanting to give your students more experience with actual video editing the imovie,  pinnacle or  free VideoPad looks to incorporate many video editing tools that might make it something to explore, though I’ve note used it myself and it seems to need a lot of memory to access the media from the ipad gallery.  If anyone has experience with it, I would love to hear your feedback.  Have fun creating new projects and keep encouraging our students to tell stories in new and interesting ways!