Tag Archives: perspectives

If I Lived in a Snow Globe, I Would Wear my Bike Helmet to Bed

Screen shot from BumbleVille
Screen shot from BumbleVille

UPDATE 1/18/15 – I just added a post that gives more details about using augmented reality with this lesson.  Go to “Outside My Snow Globe” to learn more!

Earlier this year, I posted about a short video called, “BumbleVille.”  This cute animation would be fun to show your students at this time of year.  You might want to show them part of the film, then stop and ask them what they think is going on.  Chances are they will respond like mine did: “earthquake”, “aliens”, “volcanic eruption”.  You will enjoy their reactions when they find out the true cause – that the characters are inhabitants of a snow globe which just got shaken.

In my first BumbleVille post, I gave some suggestions for incorporating Kaplan’s “Multiple Perspectives” into a lesson using the film.  Since then, I’ve also thought that it might be interesting to think about the “Rules” that might be important for living in such an unpredictable environment:

  • What special rules would they have for buildings in this community?
  • What do they tell the students to do at school when such an event occurs (similar to earthquake or tornado preparedness)?
  • Are there certain objects that should not be allowed in this community?
  • Are there certain actions that should be against the law?

When I first posted BumbleVille, I happened to be reading Not Just Child’s Play, and came across a recommendation in the comments to read The Snow Globe Family, by Jane O’Connor.  This book ties in very well with the BumbleVille video – giving perspectives from both inside and out of the snow globe.  I found this free Snow Globe Family packet on Teachers Pay Teachers by Anita Bremer that asks the students to make a text-to-self connection, which is great.

There are tons of “Snow Globe” resources on the internet – including Pinterest ideas – for crafting your own.  You can create real ones or facsimiles.

If you are interested in a digital version of a snow globe, there is a free app, called “iSnowdome” (available on iTunes only) that allows you to place a photo of your own inside a snow globe, then e-mail the video of it.  (From what I can tell, this is the only app that will e-mail a video instead of just a screen shot.) This could be a cute combo writing/augmented reality project – have students write about what it is like to live in a snow globe, use iSnowdome* to make videos of themselves in the snow globe, and upload the videos to Aurasma Studio with the screen shots as trigger images.  Voila – an interactive, winter-themed bulletin board for your classroom!

*(The iSnowdome video includes an instrumental of a Christmas song in the audio, which some families may not prefer.  You could easily mute that in a video editing program, though.)

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Misunderstood Monsters

A few weeks ago, I posted about a charming video called “Monsterbox“.  I offered some ideas for using it in the classroom, but I was not very specific.  One of my colleagues sent me an assignment that she created for the video based on Kaplan’s icons for Depth and Complexity, and that got my brain churning.  (Thanks, Michelle!)

I decided to use Monsterbox with my gifted 2nd graders.  First, we watched and discussed the video in general terms.  They immediately all wanted to make their own monsters.  Since I am a horrible art teacher, I enlisted the help of a paid iPad app – iLuvDrawingMonsters (.99) – installed on my personal iPad.  I connected that to my projector via VGA cable, and each student got to choose a monster to draw in the app while the others drew the same monster freehand.  Once they got the basic Principle of Monster Drawing, they embellished and modified their pictures however they wanted.  Some of them then felt comfortable to invent their own new monsters.

After decorating their monsters, the students did a gallery walk, so they could give each other feedback, and then make a final selection of a favorite monster to display.

Our next class was spent on decorating boxes for their monsters.  We used duct tape, markers, scrapbook paper, and whatever else we could find.  The kids loved it!

Now that their creative appetites were sated for a little bit, I encouraged the kids to do some deep thinking using the Ethics and Multiple Perspectives icons from Sandra Kaplan.  The video does a good job of showing some of the “prejudices against monsters”, and we discussed this, as well as how it would feel to be a monster.  I’ve attached two worksheets for this activity to this post.  (You can go here to generate your own “monster font”.)

Finally, the students took photos of their monsters with the iPads, and used the Puppet Pals app (Director’s Pass, $2.99, allows you to use your own photos as actors) to create skits about what monsters do for fun.

As an added bonus, I uploaded their videos to Aurasma Studio so people can scan the monsters on the bulletin board with smartphones equipped with that app and see the videos.

From start to finish, this unit took about 5 hours.  I hope that some of you can use these ideas, and I would love to hear yours!

The Ethics of Monsters

If I Were a Monster

 

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