Saturday, April 26, 2008

Planning Some Monster Reflections

My second and third graders have been slowly working on creating, describing, and swapping drawings of monsters in Kid Pix with a group of second graders in Florida.

It's Time For Me To Reflect

I've already taken some time to reflect on the project as I was attempting to organize the workflow on my end. As I'm working on final reflections for my students, I've noticed that I let a few files slip through the cracks. This is unfortunate, because we have students who worked hard for us and they couldn't compare their drawing to the original. I'll have to take care to have a better file system in place next time.

Prepping for Student Reflection
I have heard some student reflections as they drew the images from their partner school and it made me think more about formalizing the process. I am working to pull together a reflective area on my wiki. I was going to include it as part of the entire Monster Project wiki, but since Anna used a neat trick to include the list of pages in the navigation bar, I moved it to my wiki.

I learned that to include the list of pages, you need to select the Embed Widget icon on the editing bar the choose the Wikispaces option at the top.

Time for Student Reflection
So far, on both ends, the students have complained as they worked about the lack of details in the descriptions. To this end, I have created a table of student names linking to a page that includes their original description, their original drawing, and their partner's re-creation.

I am going to ask the students to answer the following three questions:
  • What words did you use in your description that made the picture easy to draw?
  • What words were missing that made it hard for the person to draw your picture? What would you add now?
  • What made it hard to describe your picture?
If this goes well, and I think it should, I'll include their partner's original description, drawing, and my student's re-creation with a similar set of follow-up questions.

If There is Time
I think a final interesting twist on this project would be to have their partner read their reflections and leave a comment. This project has had the students working on many higher levels in Bloom's Revsed Taxonomy. It has had the students work on their creating, and analyzing skills when they made and they chose the words to describe their work. This will give them the opportunity to evaluate their ability to be descriptive and find opportunities for improvement. A nice set of higher order thinking skills in a really fun project. Any thoughts you might have to add would be appreciated.

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