8Y34 Lab 4: Place your cursor BELOW the three lines. Type in your Activity Types Reviews below. Then place a line under your entry.

The digital storytelling activity I thought was the most interesting was the e-albums. I thought this would be a great way for students to share their adventures and stories with the class in an interactive and visual way. For example, if students were going away for Christmas or March Break or even staying home, I would have the students take pictures of their time off to document how they spent their time and what they did. I think the students would find this to be a fun and exciting project to work on and then share in class.
- Andrea Stirling

The digital storytelling activity I found most interesting was the Character Webs. I found this activity to be simple and straightforward. I think this type of organizational activity would be great for students to use in the classroom, and it would be particularly effective for visual learners. This method allows individual students, or groups to not only organize information about the characters in a book, but also to see the relationships between them. It is a basic analysis tool, but once students learn it, it can be transferred to other subjects or for other purposes. It is a very versatile tool that I feel each student should have in his or her toolbox.
Krista Commission

The activity type I selected was Cumulative Stories. These are stories created by more than one person. One person begins the story and the rest of the class adds on to the story a paragraph or two at a time. This can be done by using Google documents by which the story is saved in live time. I would get my class to engage in an ongoing story throughout a unit. Possibly make it mandatory that they add a minimum of 5 paragraphs throughout the unit on their own time even. I would assess their writing, thought process, and creativity and even assess their knowledge in the specific unit.
- John Reynard
ISpy Stories: I really like the I spy stories that help students with prediction, word play and vocabulary skills. The I spy page should have a picture on it with a hint for the students about what they should look for. The students need to link the object in the picture to the corresponding word. This is a great idea for the younger grades (Gr. 1, 2) who need to connect words with pictures. You can even create a ISpy ebook on the computer that could be more interactive than a regular 2D paper. I would assess if studens are able to read the word and correctly identify the object in the picture.

Tomas Kusnir

Character webs would be a very useful tool to use in the classroom; they are used to brainstorm ideas and keep them organized and together. A character web can be used in the classroom when having students connect ideas and characters in a novel study. I would assess it by using a checklist to identify what the students have understood regarding different characters and events in a story based on the set up of their character web. As a teacher I would also use a character web to organize my lessons and units. They would be easier to read and understand since everything is laid out right on the map.
Marie Anne Santaguida

The character web introduced in chapter four was a simple and very effective tool that could be used for both the teacher and student. Charcter webs/clusters are great for all subjects. This provides students and teachers with a very useful visual organizational chart to present information and brainstorm ideas. We used this idea on a computer program in class. I liked this program because you could add many sub-categories and colour code groupings of ideas. As a teacher I will have students use character webs often especially for larger projects. I would also use character webs as a tool to help me plan units.
Emily Armstrong

The digital stoytelling activity that I found most interesting and useful was the I spy stories because they help students strengthen their prediction and vocabulary skills as well as their use of visual cues for word play. The I spy books have items on each page that the children have compiled and a picture along with a riddle for the person reading the story to figure out. One way I would use this in my classroom is to have children take pictures of things that they like and then write a riddle to go along with their collage of items. The children could then switch their collage with other groups in the classroom so they all can read each others riddles and get different ideas of how riddles can be writen. I could assess this activity by observing how they are able to produce riddles, there abilty to find common words that rhyme, and to be able to put the rhyming words in the correct places.

Character web is a visual tool that helps students remember important information about characters in a story and how their relationship intertwines with other characters. Students must consider a character's personality traits and rationale for their actions. This activity allows students to have a visual representation of a character unfolding from chapter to chapter. I would use this activity with students reading books or novels involving complex and evolving characters. Character webs would provide assessment about the student's ability to understand content and make connections. It would provide an insight into the student's ability to synthesize events happening simultaneously in a plot, and the factors influencing the character's actions. Sheri Bolton

MADlibs is a funny word game where students think of a list of words to substitute blanks in a short story. Each blank has specific criteria that must be fulfilled; often these are parts of speech, but they may also be a general category such as ‘animal’ or ‘article of clothing’. I would have students complete MADlibs in pairs as a fun hook for a grammar lesson. This activity would be a great formative assessment to determine syntactical knowledge. -Lauren Hughes

Photo essays are short stories that describe using illustrations and photos. There are five different types of photo essays, which are electronic photo albums, slice of life stories, I Spy stories, VIP or digital biographies and oral histories. The activity that I could see myself using in the class would be the I Spy story. I would have the kids make collages of items and take photos of it, then have them write a riddle that a reader would use as a hint to find an item in the picture. I assign partners, and each pair would post their I Spy story in a class ebook for everyone to see. For assessment I would be looking at their ability to create riddles, looking for rhyming and alliteration, and this could also tie into media literacy. By: Megan Moffat

The digital storytelling activity that was most interesting to me was the photo essays. Photo essays is a short essay that is described using one to three digital images, explaining what is happening through guided images that the author has chosen for the story. I could see myself using photo essays in a lesson, through use of “oral histories”, where students would engage in telling stories and recollections of past events, historical times, circumstances and perspectives of an event. Through “oral histories” activities, I could assess students’ understanding of historical events, language and literacy skills, and making meaningful connections between history and present times. Cassandra Fiorino's Summary!

The digital storytelling activity which I found most intriguing is alphabet books since these books introduce the concept of letters and sound to children in an appealing and electronic application. I could see myself using alphabet books as a great way to teach both alphabet and letter knowledge at the primary level. In my lesson, I would ask students to create their own alphabet books by taking pictures of things that are of interest, such as familiar people, places, and/or things. Students would then take these pictures and present them as a power point or slideshow using tools such as iPhoto or Picasa. Through the making of these alphabet books, I would be able to assess students' understanding of the alphabet as well as whether or not students are growing in early literacy success, alphabet formation, and cultivation of literacy skills. I feel it is vital for children to develop literacy abilities at a young age as this establishes the foundation towards becoming a fluent reader and writer. Submitted By: Katelyn Macaluso

eAlbums allow a student to document a story in their life. Text and music can also be added to the eAlubm. Slice of life stories describe a particular event in time. This may be a good project to start the year off with because students could do an eAlbum of their summer vacation. Additionally this could be done after Christmas break, March break, or after any school trip or event. This project could be adapted to meet a variety of curriculum expectations, particularly for language. I would assess the overall composition of the eAlbum and the written component.

Marlee Mannarino

The digital story telling acitivity that I found most interesting was that of the “interactive story”. The interactive story is the act of creating story that includes an interactive component for the reader or the audience member. Typically the reader will decide key story elements and the outcome of the story. One way I would use this in a classroom setting is to have students create their own outcome to a story that they are reading. Students can break up into groups and choose an ending or the next plot twist. This is a good lesson in foreshadowing and making predictions, both of which are part of the elementary curriculum and could be assessed at the end. Ellie Tsimicalis

MADlibs uses a story in which every fifth word has been deleted and it is the studnet's job to fill in the blanks with a new word. Here's the catch...the words to be filled in each have a specific criteria (ie, an adjective, name of a fruit, noun etc). Once the list has been complied, the story is put back together and the story can become quite funny. The point of this exercise is to identify parts of speech, but in a fun, lighhearted way. This activity would be good for accessing what they already know about parts of speech and as an opening exercise introducing a lesson on parts of speech. Meghan Smith

The digital storytelling activity that I found most interesting is the ‘I Spy’ stories because it helps students use visual cues for word play and it is an interactive way for students to strengthen their connections to the material being taught and vocabulary skills. Each page in the ‘I Spy’ stories includes a picture with a riddle or hint as to what the reader should locate in the picture, and aabb is poetry pattern. By using vocabulary or concepts related to their own students’ needs, teachers can create ‘I Spy’ eBooks for students to use. I could use this activity when starting a new unit on shapes, for instance I could have each student create a page of an eBook on shapes. I would be assessing their vocabulary skills, if they understood how to make an aabb poem that we learned last term, and how much they know about shapes.
Submitted By: Jessica Horne

After reviewing the Digital Storytelling activities I liked the "I Spy" Story the best. This type of storytelling book is made up of many items in one image with a poem underneath describing some of the things in the image to give the reader a hint as to what they are required to find. I think this is a great way for the primary grade students to develop vocabulary skills to talk about the items that are found in the image. Their natural curiosity will lend itself to their searching skills that they use to locate the items. I could use this type of activity with my grade one class with images of farm animals since they just recently went on a field trip to Andrews Scenic Acres and I could use it to assess their vocabulary. To create the images I could use the optimizing activity tool found online using Web Photo Resizer which enables you to resize a photograph so that you may use it in Digital Storytelling. The image should be no larger than 250KB. Karen Plumb

Alphabet books are used for young children who are beginning to read. They introduce letters of the alphabet using related words and/or images. Since I teach in a grade 2 class, where the students already know their letters quite well, I could make a class project to create an alphabet book to give to the kindergarten class. I would book a computer lab, assign each student a different letter and, using a simple program like “paint”, I would have each child design their own page for the Alphabet book. Once students have completed their page, I would print them, laminate them and then bind them into a nice book that our class could give to the kindergarten classes. Students would be assessed on whether or not they used the correct letter that was assigned and whether or not they chose an appropriate picture to represent this letter. Submitted by: Nicole Parisien

Ebooks (Electronic Photo Albums) is great tool because you can use different images from the student's life from different times and you can add a podcast, written narrative and make it a powerpoint presentation or video. In a lesson, I would use this tool to show the growth of my students, and they could take photos from working on school projects to bring in pictures from home from when they where younger. They can then make a presentation about their life and explain about themselves through their pictures. In this activity, you can assess their communication and oral skills based on the presentation about themselves. Teachers can also assess the students listening by having the students watching the presentation create some questions or comments (like 3 stars & a wish) for the presenting team. Submitted by Matthew Terrana

I really like the idea of a character map/web from Chapter 4. I think the students would really enjoy using this tool to jot down and organize their thoughts. This web can be used in any subject; English- grammar webs, Literacy- novel study webs, Science- planet webs, French- verb webs; the list is endless!!! I would be able to quickly assess if the student has grasped the main ideas and is able to oraganize and categorize his notes.
Anna Nelligan
I really like the idea of KeyPals, pen pals via email. Students are paired with a student in another class, location, or country and communicate through email on chosen topics. They get to learn netiquette, as well as excellent letter-writing skills through a real world application. I would have students use this activity as a “hook” to get them interested in a writing activity. I could work with a teacher in another class, location, or country and pair our students together to ask each other questions about a certain topic and the replying to each other. I could assess their ability to create open-ended questions and creative writing. Submitted by Nicki Ho
Character map or web: Character maps or webs is a tool used to graphically organize a child's thoughts about a character in a specific story. These maps or webs assist students in writing down their thoughts about a character as a story progresses to better understand the character and their motives and beliefs. I could use character maps/webs in a lesson by asking students to pick out a character from the story and write what they believe the motives are for that character. This way I would also easily be able to assess the student's understanding of the story and the characters by looking at their webs to see what they have jotted down. Submitted by: Sajreen Sidhu_

Mad libs is a fun word game where a student creates a few sentences of a story and then replaces key words with words from a word bank, typically with humorous results. I think this activity is a fun way for students to improve their language skills and vocabulary, as well as identify improper sentence construction. Students can improve their language by identifying sentence structure (ie role of a noun, adjective, verb,etc) and also by adding words that still maintain a flow to a story. Word games like Mad libs are usually fun for students because they try and create the funniest story possible, all the while using language devices. Jamie Luxon

KeyPals is a great idea from the text! It is an activity equivalent to penpals of the past but rather than sending letters back and forth students send emails to one another. It is a fun activity as students will get immediate response from their partners as technology has enabled quick and efficient transmission of messages. Through writing emails to one another they learn "netiquette" which is basically etiquette on the web as well as improving their reading and writing skills. The students are able to learn from each other about topics of interest. I would incorporate this within the Social Studies curriculum when focusing upon geography and different countries around the world. Students would be able to have a personal connection to other countries and a better understanding as they are interacting with someone from a different country. The teacher could use a map with pins to locate the areas of the world that the students are communicating with.
Pilar Moreno

“Keypals” are similar to penpals except the correspondence in done through emails instead of “snail mail.” Key pals are a wonderful tool to use in the classroom as they allow students to instantly send letters around the world. Emails can be sent on a daily or weekly basis, as oppose to waiting for mail to be delivered across the globe before a reply can be sent. I would use keypals in the classroom to allow children to learn about different places in the world and communicate with different people. Children practice their writing skills, learn proper “netiquette” while they explore and communicate. By reading the students email and determining if they have met the expectations of the activity (different emails may require different degrees of formalness) I would be able to assess this process. – Haley Payne