More about light for Stage 3

For the Stage 3 science & technology unit, “Light me up”, here are some more Youtube clips that may prove useful.


What color is a mirror?


3 easy kids’ science experiments with magnifying glass


The science of rainbows


How a prism works to make rainbow colors


Special LED lights in infrared and ultraviolet spectrum


Rainbow walking water – easy kids science experiment

Light me up

This term, Stage 3 students are studying the Physical World in Science & Technology. In the unit, “Light me up”, activities concerning electricity will be done in classrooms and activities concerning the properties of light will be done in the school library.

To introduce the “light” concepts (including shadows, absorption, reflection, refraction, transparent/opaque/translucent, researching with secondary sources about reflection/refraction science understandings, discoveries and/or inventions, such as mirrors, magnifiers, spectacles and prisms, that directly affect people’s lives), here are some Youtube clips that may prove useful.


Shadow | The Dr Binocs Show | Educational videos for kids


Why do we have shadows?


Science – light – shadow – Advanced – English

Research projects: Progressing with Oliver and collecting evidence

At Penrith Public School, the transition to Oliver (from OASIS Library) and the students’ interface, Orbit, had to be delayed slightly due to long-service leave. It has been a very busy year: in addition to volunteering to be a Lighthouse School – demonstrating implementation and integration of Oliver through action research – we have been celebrating our school’s Sesquicentary celebrations. We have also been adapting from a complete Collaborative Planning, Programming and Teaching Program (CPPT) K-6 to the teacher-librarian providing one hour of Release-From-Face-to-Face (RFF) teaching for each class teacher.

Despite these hurdles, I am committed to continuing to involve most Stage 2 and Stage 3 students in the Guided Inquiry approach and collecting data on student learning with the tools of evidence-based practices.

Because the RFF program had to commence in Week 2 of Term 1, and it was not yet decided on just when the Oliver transition would occur, it was essential that I continue to collect quantitative and qualitative data using the SLIM tool kit survey forms (School Library Impact Measure, designed by Todd, Kuhlthau & Heinström, 2005). I highly recommend the collection of such data for all Guided Inquiry activities.

SLIMtoolkit
^ SLIM toolkit template (Todd, Kuhlthau & Heinström, 2005)

Surveys (as adapted for each unit from the template) are routinely filled out by students at pre-, mid- and post- intervals, even if not all data is tabulated immediately. I know that some teacher-librarians prefer to use an abbreviated survey (the so-called “Skinny” toolkit, as adapted by Lee FitzGerald and others), I do like to have all the data on hand simply because one often doesn’t know what evidence might be required/requested in the future.

For the two Guided Inquiry units started earlier this year – Stage 2: Built environments (science & technology) and Stage 3: Global connections (HSIE) – it became obvious, but too late, that the best way to integrate an introduction to Orbit would have been when locating relevant websites for research. By the time Oliver had arrived at Penrith PS, we unfortunately had already progressed past the Initiation and Selection stages of Guided Inquiry. (For the next time these units are taught, I need to ensure that all of the new and useful websites we found the hard way are represented in the new catalogue, so that students will achieve scaffolded success in their early searches).

For the purpose of today’s presentation, I am drawing my examples of a previously-taught Stage 3 unit, Endangered animals, for which a full set (pre-, mid- and post-) of survey responses is already available.

SLIM1
^ Question 1 responses (Click on the image to download)

SLIM2
^ Question 2 responses (Click on the image to download)

SLIM3
^ Question 3 responses (Click on the image to download)

SLIM4
^ Question 4 responses (Click on the image to download)

SLIM5
^ Question 5 responses (Click on the image to download)

Above extracts (pp 31-33) are as featured in McLEAN, Ian. ‘Research columns: Taking the plunge: Guided Inquiry, persuasion and the research river at Penrith Public School’ in Scan 30(4) Nov 2011, pp 26-35. (Stage 3 students used a weblog to showcase their learning journey in Guided Inquiry, and to share their persuasive multimedia slideshows on endangered animals with the extended school community – and beyond. This action research paper is peer reviewed.) Download the whole article as a PDF from HERE, courtesy of NSW DoE’s School Libraries & Information Literacy.

Todd, R.J., Kuhlthau, C.C. & Heinström, J.E. (2005). School Library Impact Measure: SLIM: a toolkit and handbook for tracking and assessing student learning outcomes of Guided Inquiry through the school library, Center for International Scholarship in School Libraries at Rutgers University (CISSL), New Brunswick, NJ.

* Banks PS teacher-librarian, Julie Grazotis, has a wonderful ClassMovie video clip about their Oliver journey HERE. Other links to local preliminary Lighthouse School Library System projects are HERE.

Stage 2 students investigate local government

This term, Stage 2 students will be using the Penrith City Council website to learn our about local government.

Which of the images featured in the clip below are looked after by Penrith City’s Local Council?


Penrith NSW Australia – things to do – places to see

Services of local government include:

* Sustainability:


Sustainable Cities 2012 Overall Sustainable Council – Penrith City Council

* Recycling and waste management:


Penrith recycling

Investigating Australian birds

Early Stage 1 and Stage 1 students have been reading the Aboriginal Dreaming story of Pheasant and Kingfisher, in a big book version by Catherine Berndt & Raymond Meeks.

We used a Google Images search to locate online photographs of Australian pheasants and Australian kingfishers. The additional descriptor of “long tail” helped us find images of kingfishers “with firesticks stuck in their bottom”.

We discussed why images of peacocks (not Australian!) and lyrebirds turned up in the pheasant image seach, and why kookaburras turned up in the kingfisher search. We then used Youtube to locate examples of a pheasant saying its name, “Bookbook”, as in the story, and a kingfisher saying “Bered-bered”.


Common pheasant making quick repeated sounds while taking a walk


Pheasant – common pheasant bird call


Pied Kingfisher catching fish in split second – BBC wildlife

The next week, we moved our investigations into factual information on Australian birds:


Aussie beauties – a tribute to Australian birds

We go crazy with some sheep

This week, Class 2RB celebrated the end of our investigations into nursery rhymes by collecting white objects, from home and around school, taking photographs in the school library, and brainstorming some rhyming text to create a crazy slideshow on PhotoPeach!


Baa baa white sheep

Meanwhile, Class 2S worked on a different story about a lonely, brown sheep. The students took some inspiration from the picture book, Hunwick’s egg by Mem Fox & Pamela Lofts, and our current Chicks ‘R’ Us program.


Ewe and the egg

We are surrounded by RED

Class 3/4L recently had an extra session in the school library, so we decided to create a digital slideshow, inspired by the powerful cover art of the new picture book, One red shoe, by Karin Gruss & Tobias Krejtschi (Wikins Farago, 2014). The book, set in the war-torn Gaza Strip, features black and white illustrations through, with the dramatic use of spot colour on a US-style, Chuck Taylor All-Stars red canvas shoe, to persuade the readers and viewers with symbolism.


Surrounded by RED

The resulting, jointly-constructed text of this digital slideshow, created during a Circle Time brainstorming session, is quite reminiscent of the colour poems featured in the now-classic book, Hailstones and halibut bones by Mary O’Neill (1961), although the students were not exposed to that particular work. Yet. Red objects featured in the images came mainly from the school library environment, but also a few from my personal digital albums.

Download free Teachers’ notes for One red shoe.

Sea creatures on the IWB

K-6PR created these murals yesterday on the IWB. Their current theme is “Sea creatures”.

Stage 2 group:

Sea creatures 1

Once upon a time, there was a mermaid. She was looking in her mirror to put on lipstick. A shark came to eat the fish swimming around her. The mermaid could see the shark behind her in the mirror.

The man caught a fish on his fishing rod. The man saw a dolphin jumping high. It was going up and down.

The crab is finding a pearl in the clam.

The whale is coming up out of the ocean to spray water out of his blowhole.

The seahorses were watching the shark chase the fish. They were hiding in the seaweed because they didn’t want to get eaten too.

Stage 1 group:

Sea creatures 2

The whale can move through the water by swishing his tail. It is looking for krill to eat.

The shark is swimming and wants to eat the turtle. The turtle is on the beach so he can be safe. He wants to go into the water to find food but he is scared of the shark.

The dolphin wants to make friends with the clownfish.

The crabs are digging lots of holes in the sand because it is time for bed.

The mermaid is cuddling a fish because he is her friend. The sunblock on the beach belongs to the mermaid. She uses it when she comes out of the water and her magical tail has turned into legs.

Early Stage 1 group:

Sea creatures 3

We can see a whale.

We can see a mermaid putting on her lipstick. She has a fish tail instead of legs.

We can see a fish with bubbles coming out of his mouth. There are five orange fish blowing bubbles.

We can see a dolphin swimming.

We can see some crabs swimming in the water. They are playing “Hide and Seek”.

We can see two fish swimming together.

The eel is chasing the fish because he wants to eat them.

The fat dolphin wants to eat the fish.

The blue fish is in a bowl.

Stage 3 group:

Sea creatures 4

Once upon a time there was a shiver of sharks. The sharks wanted to attack a seal because they were hungry. This is why the seal looks so worried.

Meanwhile, a dolphin was swimming towards a catfish. He was going to teach the catfish how to jump. This was so the catfish could get away from the sharks.

The crab was planning to use his nippers to catch the seahorse’s tail. The seahorse wants to make friends with the catfish.

The sea turtle is swimming towards the shallow water where the sun is shining through. She is ready to lay her eggs in the sand.

COLLECTIVE NOUNS:

When we were writing the above story we needed a collective noun for a group of sharks. We read that it could be a school, a shoal, a pack or a shiver of sharks. Here are some more interesting collective nouns:

A cast of crabs.

A pod of dolphins.

A school or shoal of fish.

A gam of whales.

A bale of turtles.

A bob of seals.