Hi MarkThanks again for your work last term. 4 of our students decided they would organise a 'Tuesdays at the Castle Fun Day' in the last week of the term (on Tuesday of course!). We dressed up as our favourite characters and did various activities. The students decided they would act out the ambush scene. A welcome relief from some of the demands of the job to see the students making cardboard swords, shields, crowns etc, deciding on the rules of engagement, hiding in the trees and then staging the ambush on the school court. Great fun!
Your initiative is awesome!! Do you have plans to do another one next term? If you do I'd be in again. My students are loving it and so am I. I think you should get the paper or TV to do a story on this. A great example of education in the 21st century and what we should all be doing! Having our students collaborate with one another. Good on you and keep up the great work! Mark Lorenz
Awesome thanks for organising it Stephen. While it was busy it got my students thinking more about the book and how to express their thoughts. It also made some realise it's ok to have your own opinion even if it's controversial (such as keeping Wilbur to make bacon). See you next week. Katrina O'Connor
Our class had an awesome time, thanks for organising it! The discussions they had were fantastic and they can't wait for next week! Melinda Bolton
It was manic but a great opportunity to engage in a different form of communication. Thanks for organising it Stephen. Lynda Lamb
It was great for getting them to make sure they had put in the correct punctuation too. Those that had used Twitter before did a great job of helping those who hadn't. What was nice was feeling the whole thing gain momentum, as they got into including images and started to have fun with it. Some really started to engage with students from other schools and were getting that sense of audience. I was impressed! Jane Venton
Absolutely brilliant, thank you Stephen. It inspired our kids to build the barn from Lego and we are looking into getting the Minecraft app. So proud of my kids being able to tweet after only one lesson and with their reliever! Yvonne Nicholson
Stephen you are a legend! My class loved it immensely - those tweets were flying - I've never really realized the true potential of Twitter - now I do. Mark Lorenz
Thanks Stephen for getting this underway - our class loved this new learning adventure! Moira McKendry
A fantastic session - the kids were buzzing - thanks so much Stephen! Sheree Rangiwahia
Thanks Stephen for your work with this. The class have LOVED tweeting. It is great connecting with others. See you next week. Brenda Stephenson
I have never witnessed such a high level of engagement in a text! Particularly a chapter book. You have created an authentic audience. I am amazed at how the creativity of others has motivated my learners to create also. Not to mention the lessons around digital citizenship and quality and purposeful comments/tweets. Javelina Lepou
And here's the feedback we received from Chapter Chat 1.
WHAT DID YOU LIKE ABOUT CHAPTER CHAT?
- How engaged the children were with very little 'buy in' required!
- I thought your questions encouraged them to think critically and interact with challenging vocabulary they might have otherwise overlooked while reading.
- The collaboration between schools, the quality of tasks and questions, how easy it was for me as a teacher to get my class involved and the motivation it gave me to ensure I read to my class every day. It's made me consider changing my reading teaching completely!
- The involvement and motivation of the children. The creative tasks. How the questions involved connections and higher order thinking. The development of students use of Twitter.
- As a teacher there was so much to like about Chapter Chat. The choice of book was perfect. Amazing vocab and so many opportunities for children to form their own opinions about what we were reading. The use of twitter appealed to all the children. It was so exciting on Fridays to see our tweets coming up instantly!! The children were excited at the thought of communicating with other year 3 & 4 children from all over New Zealand. And of course it gave the opportunities for so many teaching points. Our class put a huge emphasis on quality tweets. Our tweets had to have proper punctuation and be spelled checked. We also made sure our tweets were properly answering the question. We loved it and can't wait for Chapter Chat 2!!! Thank you for your hard work Stephen.
- The questions and tasks were fantastic. The kids enjoyed taking part in something that other kids around NZ were also doing.
- Total engagement from my class - especially those boys who don't engage in reading and/or writing.
- Good introduction to Twitter, helped with punctuation, very motivating, kids liked the book, enjoyed the follow-up activities, has inspired more activities.
- The unexpected outcomes for my learners, for instance, their spontaneous & positive feedback given on other learners work via Twitter.
- I liked the way the students were engaged in the book during read aloud times and when discussing the questions prior to the Twitter Chat. I loved seeing the kids find their 'Twitter feet' and developing new skills.
- The weekly tasks have been brilliant! Collaborating with other students. My students love the tweeting.
- A chance for kids to have a wider audience and get responses to their ideas.
- Loved the kids' enthusiasm! Their comments on their contracts were that they loved it! We particularly enjoyed the creative tasks. I even had to learn minecraft! Parents also gave positive feedback.
- Engaged the students through s new medium that hadn't used before. The kids liked knowing that they were connecting with people all over nz.
- I enjoyed the use of twitter rather than Edmodo. It was very well organised. The tasks and questions were posted well in advance. I liked the fact that there was a blog that showcased the learning each week. I like that it was targeted at a specific age/year group. The tasks were very open to interpretation which meant the results were very different and sparked a lot of creativity in my classroom.
- The kids were motivated and engaged in looking for the deeper meaning in the book as they knew other classes were looking at it and wanted to be able to comment during twitter sessions. In addition they got further insight from reading other comments and other points of view.
- That the organisation was perfect - it felt like there was support available to get me started as a teacher (thank-you!). My students LOVED it, it gave them a purpose for their reading and an authentic audience for their ideas. They seemed to do their best tweeting when responding to others tweets, I guess because they had a connection to that other students work or thinking - which is why they chose to respond to that particular student. They had a high work standard because it was going out to the world.
- Collaborating with other students around NZ and seeing how they interpret the tasks! Rich and meaningful comprehension questions.