Teaching the Catalog with Bamboo Paper
This week was a time to review with students how to use our catalog program, Alexandria. Third graders had direct instruction and a chance to practice using the catalog in different ways while it was hooked up to our wonderful flat screen TV. Other upper grades just needed a brush up so I made a quick presentation using a wonderful free app called Bamboo Paper. It’s available at the App Store. It works like an interactive whiteboard and is very simple to use. I took pictures with my iPad of the different screens in the catalog and then easily imported those into Bamboo Paper. You can create little notebooks and I titled this one Catalog. After projecting it on the TV, I could then use my finger to draw colored annotations on the image–arrows, circles, etc. It was quick and easy and as a little assessment at the end of the lessons, I erased my marks and had students come up and circle or annotate the image as an answer to my questions.
I also found a humorous way to use Bamboo Paper. After going over all the rules two weeks ago in the Library, there were the inevitable slip ups. I made a notebook called Oops! and after a class leaves, if I find anything that needs a reminder, I quickly snap a photo with the iPad. Then when they come to the Library on the following week, I show them the photos on the TV and they take turns circling, “What’s wrong with this picture?” I worked like a charm with sixth grade. This week, the library was perfect when they left!
Also in the library this week….
Kindergarten–Using the Visible Thinking Routine called Fluttering Feelings, Kindergarteners listened carefully to Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson and tracked how Otto’s feelings changed as he is left behind when his family moves, decides to have an adventure in the big city, finds it overwhelming, and then settles in his new home in a public library. This is a charming book about change, flexibility, and the idea that characters in books can jump off the page in our imaginations.
First Grade–First graders were Word Detectives this week with Eve Bunting’s lovely little book, Our Library. Faced with the closure of their beloved library, a group of animals get together to repair and move the building with the help of lots of research they did from the books they checked out. The two words our first grade detectives solved were “flummoxed” and “ignorant.” This Visible Thinking Routine has children using context clues and their own experiences to “solve” words and explain how they did so.
Second Grade–Using our iPad mini and just the built-in movie camera, second graders demonstrated their knowledge of the difference between fiction and non-fiction this week. After looking at several examples of each, I made a stack of books. Each student came up and picked the top book and decided which is was. Then I filmed them explaining their reasoning and we projected it on the TV. They were stars!! This was a simple but very motivating use of an iPad for assessment. In the future, I will have one of them be the camera person as well. We also had time to hear Michael Garland’s always popular book, Miss Smith and Her Incredible Storybook and use our thinking routine, Plot Prediction.
Third Grade–See opening post
Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Grade–This week we reviewed genres using a fun little lesson I purchased on Teachers Pay Teachers. It’s called Genre Jar. I adapted it to my needs by first scanning the sheet that explains well the different types of literary genres that align with Common Core language. I made a slide as an anchor chart and projected that to the TV. Cards with clues relating to real books were put into a hat (not a jar). After reviewing the genres and looking at examples from our Library, students pulled a card from the hat and silently read it while others were choosing their cards. When we finished, each student read their card, decided what genre it belonged to, and guessed the actual title if they could. It was a lot of fun. I highly recommend this lesson as it can be adapted to both large groups and individual centers.
It’s great to be back and being able to teach with all these amazing resources!