Category Archives: wallwisher

Connecting As An Educator: What it looks and sounds like @kkidsinvt

This past week was an amazing one in Kindergarten!  I am so excited and thrilled at how my students, their parents and others are reaching out to connect, share and use technology in meaningful ways that capture what we are learning.  This is happening in a variety of ways.

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Last week we visited the food shelf in our community and dropped off food that we had collected.  My students reminded me that we needed to blog about our trip because others would be interested in how we made a difference.  When I asked; “How will they know?” My students shared that they see the triangles blinking on our map of the world on our class blog and that is how they know.  Wonderful!  The gadget on our class blog gives us feedback about where in the world people are from who are interested in Kindergarten Life.

I had a wonderful opportunity on Friday where I was invited to be a part of a class  discussion at Clemson University in South Carolina, facilitated by Ryan D. Visser, Ph.D.  So during my lunch time I was able to give an overview of how and why I use technology with my students, families and myself.  I was also able to share about what I am seeing in terms of engagement and how my students are interacting with technology and the positive impact it is having on their learning.  This was a great way for me to connect with others and have a meaningful conversation via Skype.  Ryan and I connected on twitter.

I needed to check in with a parent and thought of this while at my computer.  I noticed she was online(thanks to Skype) So I was able to call and have a quick conversation.  This was easy and seamless because Skype is part of my classroom culture.  We started using Skype on the 1st day of Kindergarten.  My point here is that once you begin to use technological tools in authentic ways that enhance connection, reflection and transparency, you begin to transform and your learning is open to others and others will begin to connect and collaborate through your learning.

Twitter is on all day in my classroom and my students are great about sharing what they want to tweet. Social media is used and part of my classroom culture because we use it to reflect, share and connect what we are learning and experiencing.  Last week we were beginning to read the live feed from others that we follow and my students began asking how do we tell them we are doing that too.

We are also part of a Flat Classroom project and we created a padlet about what the view is like from outside our window.  My students reminded me to tweet this and email this to their parents so that others can post their window view. This is another easy way to connect and share what you are learning.  I got this idea because another teacher from Ma. contacted via Skype over the weekend and asked me to post on her padlet.  We connected through Skype play last year.  Again connections are everywhere!  They are active and inactive, but they are always connections.

One of my students parents called us during snack time via Skype to say hello and ask about our day.  This is a part of our culture, not a disruption.  My students are excited to have conversations with others about what we are doing in Kindergarten.  Through authentic opportunities to engage, we connect and get inspired because we are wondering what is next.

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Try twitter, Skype, blogging, create a padlet and connect. Showcase something you are doing with your students.  For me it is always about the learning, but most importantly about how I am going to share my story with others.  Through sharing we get inspired, make connections and gain insight about learning.

I want my students and their families to feel a part of Kindergartenlife.  Learning is fluid, ongoing and exciting.  Communication is constant and helps build strong relationships which impacts learning in endless, positive ways.

A Collaboration Focused on Kindness

In celebration of Digital Learning Day my Kindergarten students are collaborating with Ms. Weegar’s 3rd and 4th graders in a mission to share and connect with others in world about kindness.  This is part of a whole school initiative supported and inspired by our Technology Integration Specialist, Bonnie Birdsall.  The idea is for teachers and students at one school site, to connect with a class at our other school site in celebration of Digital Learning Day using technology.  So the collaborating begins!

Ms. Weegar starts with the idea of focusing on kindness and we begin to develop her idea.  We created a kindness wall on wallwisher.  We are talking and sharing with our students about the idea of a kindness wall, tweeting it out to our students, their families and our PLN’s as well!  Our students will begin to experience the value of how small the world can be!100_0282

Just by posting stickies of how we are kind, our students will be collaborating and sharing their ideas with others and the world.  We look forward to reading what others will be posting and sharing how our ideas are similar.

This is a wonderful way to connect and work with others in a positive, meaningful way.  Our focus is universal in that we could all, always use a little more kindness.  Our students are exploring the importance of what it means to be a safe, kind and responsible digital citizen. ImageToday we started posting stickies about how we are kind each day.  Our SMART board is a great way for everyone to see what we are posting and how to post as well.

Last week we began by saying hello using Skype!  This was a wonderful way for us to share acts of kindness in our school, home and community.  Our students experience the value of using technology in a meaningful way.  100_0280

Our students make new connections with others and share what they are experiencing.  Ms. Weegar and I continue to connect using Gmail, facebook, Google circles and twitter to share our ideas.  Our students also use twitter, Skype and wallwisher to collaborate about kindness.  Click here to add to our kindness wall!

All it takes is an idea……..  Ms. Weegar, you had a great one!