Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Can You Hear Our Learning?

Thanks to guest authors Heather McKay and Jaime Hatchette for this post...

The Curious Journey of 2 Teachers in K: Can you hear our learning?

In Kindergarten our students are fast becoming experts at explaining their thinking. As teachers, we see evidence of their critical thinking in their play, their conversations, and their written work.  We attempt to scribe student thoughts as much as possible in order to leave a visible trace of their learning. 

On one such day we were having trouble keepingup with the flow of ideas; we decided to try the app Audioboo as a tool for making our thinking visible in Kindergarten.

The Audioboo app allows you to capture an image and attach up to 3 minutes of audio. It is a web-based app allowing users to create their own podcast collections.  We access our Audioboo account from our class iPads. We do not attach student names to any podcasts, but instead have taught our Kindergarten students to use their initials as a form of hashtag, when sharing their learning via social media.  Audio files can be sorted and stored in folders you create.  Each Audioboo post can be individually sharedthrough Twitter, email, or embedded within a blog.  Our students ask to tweet Audioboo posts as one way to share their learning with their families. Parents can also subscribed to a RSS feed.  

We are just beginning to explore how Audioboo will support our work within IRIS and are excited about the possibilities!  Because IRIS allows users to insert a URL as an artifact, we predict this will be one way to empower our youngest learners to capture their own thinking using iPads as a learning tool.

How have we used Audioboo in Kindergarten ?

We researched Penguins using the online database PebbleGo.  Afterwards we asked students to share what they learned by drawing a picture.  Students explained their picture and learning by responding to our prompt “Tell the story of your picture” using Audioboo. Here is one example:  What did you learn about Penguins?

Each day during centres two boys continue to look closely at one particular book.  We asked them to share their reflections about this particular book to learn more about why they are drawn to it and to uncover what they were learning. We asked them to look closely and share what they noticed:

Many students choose to create and build different structures during our daily centre block. It is challenging to capture this process, as photos show only part of the story.Audioboo provides a simple and easy way for students to record their reflections and allows us as teachers to uncover many learning outcomes.  Listen to the mathematical vocabulary being used in the following clip:

How do you make the learning visible in your classroom?  We would love to hear from you and build our Visible Thinking toolkits together!

Heather McKay (@HeatherMMckay) / Jaime Hatchette @JaimeHatchette

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