Starting the Project.. .Adding the Technology

So, anyone that has been reading my dribble here may have seen my comments on starting a project with my classes on finding water on Mars.  We’re starting with learning about the Moon, the only planetary body in the solar system humans have visited.

Yesterday, we watched the History Channel episode “The Moon” from “The Universe” series and discussed the proposed permanent outpost NASA is considering.  Today, we started preparing for a field trip to the local Challenger Learning Center, where we will be “mission specialists”, taking that return trip to the Moon.  Team building, job interviews and vocabulary introduction for everyone!

The tools I’m using to get us started include the following:

Study Stack for the vocabulary

Scoop.It! for article Curation on the Moon

Youtube and Google to find images and video on the Moon as the students write blog articles on whether or not the Moon is really made of cheese (please see Planet Science) to see some of the articles.

Through the blogging, I”m teaching the children how to create digital stories.  For this particular assignment, they had to add an image or video.  The next assignment will require them to make the images and/or videos more personal. We’ll be tracking the Moon over about 18 days, and they will have to take pictures and/or video of what they see everyday.  This should be interesting.

We will also be looking at the night sky and stars, with a lot activities that will integrate Language Arts, Social Studies and Math. (has anyone ever made a Martian calendar?)

After our trip to the Challenger Center, we will begin the water on Mars project. I can’t wait.

Anyone have ideas for me on how to add more technology to this experience?

7 Replies to “Starting the Project.. .Adding the Technology”

  1. Hello Chevin – great ideas on this project!
    Will the students be selecting the best site to settle/ colonise? I can see opportunities to evaluate their thinking with team-generated proposals on how to avoid the current human-generated problems we experience on home-base Earth.
    Who gets to pioneer and why would they be chosen?
    I love Evernote for notesharing/ portfolio production, but the tech integration looks pretty full from here 🙂
    Thanks for sharing
    Sam

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    1. the plan is, as they look at the planet and other planets in the solar system, to determine, based on what is currently known about water on earth vs other planets, where might be the best place to colonize… I want to give them the tools to make those decisions on their own.

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      1. Thanks for illustrating with your classblog, Chevin; I can understand now how learners in your sphere are given an opportunity to experience scientific thinking via this highly creative learning space (can only forge contrasts with our sterile university LMS that leaves me feeling confined & in need of oxygen).

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  2. May not have explained myself clearly enough – I am a uni student and the LMS is sterile; no-one posts comments online. Where I teach, however, is a different sphere of influence!
    I think I’m appreciating my heightened awareness to how learning looks and feels (very different depending on the levels of control/ innovation).

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    1. ok, yes, I misunderstood you. I apologize. I am finding that blogging takes the kids to a different level of thinking. I don’t spend a lot of energy worrying about spelling and grammar, but am looking for the thought process. So many of them are better at expressing themselves through blogging than through speaking/writing in class.

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