Monday, February 6, 2017

Gaming in the Classroom and Pushing Further with Bb9

A big success that I had with technology integration in the classroom was with a game called Win the Whitehouse from iCivic.  After students had learned about the election process they had to apply their knowledge to try and win a presidential election.  They had to learn different components of how to campaign such as raising funds, giving speeches, and selecting TV and radio spots.  Students had to decide which states would be the most beneficial to make appearances in, and learned quickly how the Electoral College works.  My students were highly engaged in the game and the election process.  They not only played the game at school, but would go home and play it, for fun!  After attending a session at the One Conference, I heard another teacher also talk about the game and how she created BINGO cards for the game, with each square representing a different outcome they had to accomplish.  I'm very excited to try this idea next year.  

I am about to launch a new unit on Blackboard.  My students are well versed in Bb9 as a location to grab materials and content from as this is their second year using it.  I had my students last year as 4th graders, and again as 5th graders.  Last year I used Bb9 mostly at the Substitution level, with students going to Bb9 to grab a document to open in Notability.  This year I wanted to use more of the features available.  In science I have used Bb9 to link virtual investigations for students to get extra practice, or use when I have a substitute teacher.  I like the virtual investigations to reinforce concepts after the students have already completed the investigation hands-on, not replace them.  This week I will be using the adaptive release feature as students begin to learn about the Civil War.  To ensure that students are taking away the important concepts, to move on, students will have to answer a few questions about the content before moving onto to the next item.  I used the test feature to create the questions.  I like that students won't be able to move on with their  learning with misconceptions.  After all the students learn the general information about the Civil War, I will be using the group feature on Bb9 to assign multiple perspectives to different students.  I am hoping that the adaptive release feature goes smoothly on the student end.  

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