Digital Citizenship

Teaching and modeling digital citizenship is essential to helping our students learn how to responsibly use social media.  My goal as a librarian is to help our young people understand that images and messages posted on the Internet today can affect their future forever.  Fortunately, Common Sense Education provides a wealth of resources for educators and families.

Three years ago White Oak Middle School implemented Common Sense Education curriculum, and the change in our school culture has been significant. Our students have learned to use social media responsibly, show respect for other’s work, and avoid the negative effects of cyberbullying. Through Common Sense we became a digital citizenship certified school and district.

In addition to educating our students, we shared the digital citizenship resources with our students’ families through parent lunch and learns, blog posts, and newsletters.

Common Sense Media helps families make smart media choices. We offer the largest, most trusted library of independent age-based and educational ratings and reviews for movies, games, apps, TV shows, websites, books, and music.  Our Parent Concerns and Parent Blog help families understand and navigate the problems and possibilities of raising children in the digital age. -Common Sense Media

An easy way for families to start the digital citizenship conversation is by participating in the #DeviceFreeDinner Challenge. Use the Common Sense Media resources to create a family media plan.     

Check out all the resources at Common Sense Media to get students started on the path to being responsible digital citizens.

Diary of a Worm, Spider, and Fly Field Trip

To inspire book club members to create their own children’s book, Mrs. Cooper and Mrs. Kelley gave members the opportunity to see a live performance of some of the most beloved children’s books.

The Roughneck Book Club watched Doreen Cronin books come to life at LeTourneau University’s Belcher Center. Dallas Children’s Theatre performed excerpts from three of Doreen Cronin’s wildly popular books Diary of a Worm, Diary of a Spider, and Diary of a Fly.  The performance included the coolest ever rock-n-roll romp in a bug’s world, capturing all the droll humor and whimsy of the books. Insects rule in the diaries of unlikely best friends: Worm, Spider, and Fly. Worm eats his homework, Fly believes she has superpowers, and Spider can’t wait to grow up and molt.  Promoting Eco-consciousness, earth science and tolerance of others, Diary of a Worm, Diary of a Spider, and Diary of a Fly is a joyful, hip musical exploration of the world outside. In this performance, a bug’s life is not all that different from our own! 

 

Coding Hide & Seek Games

Mrs. Velde’s technology class and the Roughneck Tech Club learned how to code hide and seek games this week using Scratch.  Students customized characters and backgrounds to make their games original and reflect their creativity.  In order for the game to be challenging,  students learned to make characters disappear and reappear at random intervals.  Tech club members also coded characters to reappear at random positions on their background image. Of course, it would not be a game if there was no score; therefore, students learned how to code their games to keep score and reset to zero when the game started over. Check out the code sequence below.

Ready to check out some of the games?  Play Underwater Hide and Seek. Hint: You may have to allow Flash

Click on the diver when he appears on the screen to earn points. Click on the flag to start the game.

Play Hide and Seek Reindeer! Click on the reindeer when he appears on the screen to earn points. Click on the flag to start the game.

Start making your own game at Scratch.mit.edu!

Tech Club Eco Challenge

The Lexus Eco Challenge is an exciting national STEM competition for grades 6–12 that awards a total of $500,000 in grants and scholarships to eligible teachers, students, and schools each year.  Featuring three separate challenges, the Lexus Eco Challenge gets students involved in project-based learning, teamwork, and skill building as they work to develop a solution to an environmental issue that affects their community.

Challenge 1: Land & Water Topics

  • Landfills, Waste Management, and Recycling
  • Forest Destruction/Deforestation and Desertification
  • Endangered Species and Loss of Biodiversity
  • Water Conservation and Fresh Water Shortages
  • Shrinking Wetlands and Aquatic Habitats
  • Threats to the World’s Waterways and Oceans, e.g., (Poorly Managed Fishing, Pollution, Coastal Tourism and Development, and Shipping)

The Roughneck Tech Club is busy designing solutions to solve an environmental problem related to land and/or water. Final submissions are due on October 15, 2018, and we cannot wait to see all the creative eco-campaigns our students’ design.

Stay tuned…

 

 

Creating Book Characters

The Roughneck Book Club held its first meeting of the 2018-2019 school year today! Students began working on a new project in which they will create a ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ book using Google forms. One of the most important elements of any story is the main character.  Using a cool website named Adroidify, students spent time developing memorable characters. Students created some unique images by choosing their character’s hair, clothing, and movements from the options available. Hopefully, the students will be inspired to create unforgettable characters for their original stories. The book club hopes to have their stories finished in October to share with students at White Oak Primary.

 

Coding with Scratch

Coding is an essential skill for students in our ever-changing digital world.  By learning to code, students are really learning problem solving strategies, how to share and communicate their ideas, and design unique solutions for our modern world.

Are you ready to teach your students coding? Not sure where to begin? Scratch is a project of the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab. Scratch is provided free of charge and has easy step by step tutorials for parents and educators.

The Roughneck Tech Club started Scratch today by animating their name. Students followed the step by step tutorial to create their first program. Scratch provides a series of tutorials to help students learn to navigate the coding program.

As students successfully coded their names with special effects and sounds, they began to learn that coding involves learning precise logical steps, troubleshooting errors, and being creative.

Not only did students learn beginning coding skills, but they learned teamwork. Students who had difficulty with a coding step could rely on their neighbors to give them a helping hand.

Friendship Bracelet Club

I am excited to welcome back all of our students for the new school year. The new sixth-grade class is already making an impact on WOMS. The young ladies pictured above asked if they could come to the library before school to make friendship bracelets. Soon this turned into a full-fledged club ready to make tons of bracelets. Remembering the project Shannon Miller’s students began called Banding Together, I asked the members of the Friendship Bracelet Club if they wanted to connect with students in other parts of the world. They wholeheartedly said, “Yes!” Then, I began a social media campaign to find global connections. The project is still in the development phase, but we already have classes in Egypt, England, Brazil, and New York City that want to connect and share with us. 

 

The members of the club also want to send bracelets to children’s hospitals and members of the armed services. I cannot wait to share the experiences and connections this club will make as they spread their kindness to others.

Summer Reading Club

Ready for some fun summer reading activities? Check out the Longview Public Library!

The Longview Public Library has a wonderful program planned for children and teens this summer. Registration is open for the Summer Reading Club, and a kick off party will be held on June 8th from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.  Weekly prizes will be given for reading along with free programs almost every day during the summer. The best part is the program is absolutely FREE! Signing up for a library card only takes a few minutes for any Texas resident. Children and teens DO NOT have to have a library card to participate in the  Summer Reading Club; however, there are some amazing benefits to getting a card. For starters, check out the Hoopla App, which contains audiobooks, movies, music, comics, ebooks and tv shows. Just download the free app and sign in with your library card.  Sync audiobooks is another free service with your library card.  SYNC is a free summer audiobook program for teens thirteen and up. They have new audiobooks to choose from each week. In addition to SYNC, try out the Libby app from Overdrive. Libby has thousands of ebooks and audiobooks ready for you to check out! In addition to reading, the library offers many activities such as Family Game Night, Story Times, Movie showings, Crafty Kids Club, and Legos in the Library. Check out the slideshow below for a full calendar of events. Registration is currently open for the Summer Reading Club. Drop by the Longview Public and have some fun this summer!

 

Mystery Skype Selfie Challenge

Join the  Mystery Skype Selfie Challenge during the month of May!

HOW TO PARTICIPATE:  1) Schedule a Skype Call!  Organize a call with a class, guest speaker or a V.I.P. to play a #MysterySkype game.

2) Get Creative!  Think of a fun and clever idea for a selfie of your class either at the beginning, during or the end of your call.

3) Share on Social!  Post your classrooms clever selfie with us @SkypeClassroom using #MysterySkype #sweepstakes and your classroom might be picked to be one of 5 classrooms to participate in a call with a Mystery V.I.P.

4) Tag 3 friends!  Spread the fun by challenging three or more other teachers to play #MysterySkype with their students and share their creative class selfie within 72 hours.

The Roughneck Book Club had a wonderful Skype with Shannon Miller. The students shared their favorite books and asked clues to help them determine Shannon’s location.