Writing Collaborative Storybirds

Last week, the students in 2KM and 2KJ had a fabulous time writing collaborative stories with the sixth graders in Mr Avery’s class in Massachusetts, USA.

You can click here to read Mr Avery’s post about our project.

Avery Stories

We used an online program called Storybird.

storybird

We used Storybird earlier in the year to write our own stories, but we had never used it to write collaborative stories before. Earlier this year, B4 in New Zealand and Mrs Watson’s class in Canada collaborated on Storybirds and gave us the idea to do this ourselves. Check out their work here and here.

Even though the students in Mr Avery’s class are four years older than us, that didn’t stop us working together. Mr Avery’s sixth graders were excellent role models for us and helped us to produce our very best work.

Here are four of the Storybirds and you can find the rest by visiting Mr Avery’s class blog here. Thank you Mr Avery for collating the Storybirds!

What did you enjoy about this project?

Do you like writing stories?

How did you enjoy using Storybird compared to writing a story on paper?

Apostrophes

When reading blog comments and other text as a class, we have been focussing on where to use an apostrophe.

An apostrophe is a type of punctuation.

apostrophe

On a keyboard, you can usually find an apostrophe to the left of enter.

keyboard apostrophe

Apostrophes can be confusing. Here are some tips that 2KM and 2KJ put together.

We enjoyed looking at this cartoon because it reminded us that we should not use an apostrophe every time a word ends with an s.  Remember, plurals don’t need an apostrophe before the s.

Apostrophe man to the rescue!

http://horacek.com.au

Apostrophe-man.col1

Did our tips help you learn about apostrophes?

Leave a comment with a sentence that has some words with apostrophes.

Can you make up a sentence that has an apostrophe before an s, after an s and in a contraction?

It’s Book Week!

This week is the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s Book Week.

Book Week is held every year and this year it is from August 20th – 26th.

Book week

During Book Week many schools and public libraries celebrate fantastic books, authors and illustrators.

In 2KM and 2KJ we love reading so we are excited to be a part of Book Week.

This year the theme of Book Week is One World, Many Stories.

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In Grade Two, we are celebrating Book Week by having a Blogging Book Day.

We are  passing around some of the short listed books in the Picture Book of the Year awards.

Each class is writing a blog post about one of the books and the other classes will be commenting.

Book Week 24.08.11

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2KM and 2KJ read two books to start the day…

Two Peas in a Pod by Chris McKimmie

Marvin and Violet have been friends since they were babies. They are like two peas in a pod. But then Violet moves away…

Two Peas in a Pod

Family Forest by Kim Kane

While some kids have a family tree, WE have a family forest! Do you have half-sisters, big brothers, step-parents? The modern family comes in all shapes and sizes…

Family Forest

What did you think of Two Peas in a Pod and Family Forest?

Which one did you like best?

Write a review for the books!

What is your favourite book?

Check out 1/2W, 2JS and 2MK’s blogs to find more Book Week posts!

Using Adjectives

This week we have been learning about how to use adjectives in our writing.

Adjectives are describing words and using good adjectives makes your writing much more interesting to read. Adjectives add colour to your writing!

Adjectives you might use when describing a snake are: scaly, slithery, poisonous, scary, long and smooth.

Adjectives you might use when describing a puppy are: cute, fluffy, small, playful, cheeky, noisy and lovable.

Adding extra information and details to your sentences helps the reader to make a picture in their mind about what is happening.

To remind ourselves about adjectives, we used this website on our interactive whiteboard:

Adjectives

We turned some basic sentences into interesting sentences by adding adjectives and more information!

Adjectives sentences

 

We’d love to hear your interesting adjective-filled sentences in your comments!

Can you make this sentence more interesting by adding adjectives and extra information?

The boy rode his bike.

OR

What adjectives would you use to describe yourself?

Journal Writing

Every Monday morning 2KM and 2KJ students love doing journal writing as part of our Literacy Block.

During journal writing, students write about their weekends and focus on the following things:

– Using full stops and capital letters correctly.

– Spelling high frequency words correctly and having good attempts at unknown words.

– Making sure their writing is interesting and makes sense.

– Presenting their work neatly.

– Editing their work to fix up mistakes.

Everyone enjoys sharing their weekend adventures and it is a favourite time of the week for many students.

Listen to our Fotobabbles by clicking the “play” button to see what Meg, Harry and Ava  got up to this weekend!

 

What did you think of our Fotobabbles?

What did you do on the weekend?

What is your favourite weekend activity?

Build Your Wild Self

Last week while the swimmers were learning new skills in the pool, the non-swimmers were learning about some online tools such as  Glogster, Tagxedo and Storybird.

Another one of the tools that the students enjoyed learning about was Build Your Wild Self. This is a fun tool that lets you make a cartoon picture of your human self and then add your favourite animal parts to it.

build your wild self

After we made our wild selves, we saved the image, inserted it in a Word document and wrote a description of our character. The students are getting very good at saving, changing fonts and borders and editing their writing. Here are the students busily working on their netbooks.

classroom

Here are three of our “Build Your Wild Self” creations

 

What did you think of the students’ work?

What sort of wild self would you like to make?

Have you ever used the Build Your Wild Self website before?

Storybirds

The 2KM and 2KJ students who are not participating in the swimming program are enjoying learning some new skills. Last week, they learnt how to use Glogster and Tagxedo. This week, they are creating stories with Storybird.

storybird

Storybirds are short online stories that are inspired by art. To make a Storybird, you need to go to http://storybird.com and sign up. Miss Jordan and Mrs Morris signed up their students through their teacher account.

There are all different sorts of artwork that you can choose to illustrate your Storybird. The students chose their artwork first to help them think of story ideas.

Here are some of the stories…

 

 

Later in the year we might make some collaborative Storybirds like B4 in New Zealand did with their friends in Mrs Watson’s grade in Canada. You can read about the fun they had here.

What did you think of the Storybirds?

Have you ever made a Storybird?

What would you like to make a story about?

Spelling Ideas for Home and School

Mrs Morris and Miss Jordan are very happy that their students have learnt to spell many new words this year! Students practise their spelling words in our Literacy Block every week and they also spend time at home learning to spell new words.

In 2KM and 2KJ we work through lists of high frequency words in this order:

  1. M100W words
  2. M200W words
  3. Spelling Challenge words
  4. Spelling Challenge Two words

We like all students to be able to spell the M100W and M200W words by the end of the year.

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Here are some ways you can practise your spelling words at school and at home:

* Write sentences – Include your spelling words in interesting sentences or stories.

 * Rainbow words – Write your words in grey lead and then trace over them in all the colours of the rainbow.

* Vowels and consonants – Choose two colours and write the vowels in one colour and the consonants in another colour.

* Triangle words – Choose a word and write the first letter at the top of the page. On the next line, write the first two letters. Add a new letter on each line until you have a recorded the entire word. You will end up with a triangle shape!

* Computers – Type your words onto the computer using Word.

* Word cloud – Use Wordle or Tagxedo to make beautiful word clouds online.

* Websites – Use websites such as Spelling City to practise your words. Type in a few of your words and complete the fun activities online.

* Word finds – Using a blank word find grid, write your spelling words in the grid and fill the other spaces with random letters. See if a friend can find your words!

* Book browse – Find your spelling words in a variety of fiction and non-fiction books.

* Concrete materials – Make your words with play doh, write them with chalk on the ground outside, use magnetic letters on whiteboards or write the words in sand.

Hopefully everyone in 2KM, 2KJ and other students all over the world can use these ideas to practise their spelling words at home and at school!

Do you have any other ideas for spelling practice?

What is your favourite way to learn to spell new words?

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http://www.worldofstock.com/slides/PED1032.jpg

Origami Fun!

The students in 2KM and 2KJ love using the iPod Touch as part of their reading rotations each week.

We have been doing a lot of “listening to reading” to practise our reading strategies but we can do all sorts of activities on the iPods using apps, videos, podcasts and music.

The students are enjoying learning some origami using instructional videos on the iPod Touch this week. Origami is the Japanese art of paper folding.

Watching the videos helps us to learn to follow instructions and work as a team.

Last week’s origami video was “How to fold an origami swan”.


This week’s origami video is “How to fold an origami sailboat”

2KM and 2KJ’s tips for making origami are – listen to the video carefully, pause and replay the video when you need to and press down hard on your folds.

How did you go making the swan and sailboat?

Have you made any other origami before?

Have you used an iPod Touch before?

A Surprise In The Mail

We were so excited to receive a special present in the mail from our friend, Chicken! 

Chicken is friends with Mr Avery, and they both live in Massachusetts, in the United States of America.

You might remember Chicken (and his friend, Milk) left us some comments on our post about Food Safety and Storage. Check out what Chicken had to say about food safety!

The present we received from Chicken is a book. He must know we love reading in 2KM and 2KJ! The book is called Cloudy with a Chance of Chicken. What a great title! Our friend Chicken certainly is clever!

The book is written by Judi Barrett and the illustrator is Ron Barrett. It was published in 1978 and it was made into a movie in 2009. Here is the cover of the book and Mrs Morris reading it to the students.

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 The book is about a story that a grandfather tells to his grandchildren about the town of Chewandswallow, where the weather comes three times a day, at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and is always food and beverages. There is a very similar book titled Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs and you might like to listen to and watch the story below.

 Even Leo loved our new book!

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Chicken wrote us a special message inside the book cover. He asked us the following question:

What are some of the sometimes foods and everyday foods in the book?

You might also like to think about these questions:

What did you like about the book?

What other books do you like that have also been made into movies?