November 9

Lighting up our Fans with Paper Circuits

We decided to light up our terrific Japanese Fall Fans by tinkering with making a circuit using copper wire, LED lights and a small battery. Different classes have used these fans for a number of projects since we created them.

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November 3

Sumo Digital Makers

We have been learning about the Japanese national sport of Sumo. Students created mini wrestlers and these were used by other classes to show their learning through digital creation.

Sumo Wrestlers from Anna Crosland on Vimeo.

A second class also focused on sumo and used Superimpose App to digitally show their learning.

Sumo SuperImpose from Anna Crosland on Vimeo.

A third class imported the Superimpose creations to use as a background to show their learning in Tellagami App.

 

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November 3

Kimono MakerEd with Newspapers

This week Grade 3/4 showed their previous learning about Kimono design. Students focused on core competency skills such as working in a group, problem solving, peer encouragement and celebrating our learning. We searched for inspiration from images of clothing designed from newspaper and other recycled materials.

Students were able to complete the lesson and the activity, including clean up and book circulation during a 40 minute prep.

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October 28

MakerEd and Fall Fans

Students have been learning about the artistry of Japanese fans. We explored seasonal fan designs and enjoyed a Maple Fan Dance video from Kyoto.

Using fall colours, with inspiration from Ehlert, some classes designed fans with wooden handles using crayons, cut out leaves or by painting maple leaves collected from outside.

To celebrate the work of their peers, Grade 4 and 5 students created stop motion videos using keys from discarded laptops or used Lego to design display stands for the fans.

Students had to work co-operatively, share the materials as well as show respect for the work of their peers.

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October 19

Making buttons and cards with our Flower Press

Students experimented with a flower press to see if we would be able to add petals to a design and then create a pin with our button press. We wondered if the petals would dry out and break in the button. So far so good. We also created designs to use as Thank you cards in the future. We are looking forward to the spring when more flower petals will be available.

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October 13

Wabi-Sabi: Celebrating Transience and Imperfection

In traditional Japanese aesthetics, the concept of Wabi-sabi centers on the acceptance and celebration of transience, mindfulness and imperfection.

We have begun to use the concept of Wabi Sabi in the Learning Commons to help influence our thinking around Maker Ed. Whilst some maker projects appear more permanent than others, students are encouraged to remember that their temporary maker creations are all the more valuable because they are to be enjoyed and appreciated for a short time. We celebrated our Indian Banga / Japanese Kimono creations as we made them but remembered wabi-sabi as we broke them apart. What remains is the learning.

Wabi-sabi also encourages students to be mindful, to notice details, to focus on the materials and to think carefully and critically as they work. To find beauty in unexpected places. The celebration of imperfection may encourage students to take risks, challenge themselves and try new ideas. Mark Reibstein’s book Wabi Sabi is a great read aloud for this concept.

We look forward to seeing how this idea pans out as the year progresses.

 

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May 31

How to create digital I Spy puzzles

Students in Grade 3 created their own I Spy pages. The items were gathered from yard sales, usually by the bag full, for a few dollars, and put through the dishwasher. The first class was spent exploring ‘I Spy’ books and arranging the items onto colourful card. I had 9 baskets of items so small groups or pairs each photographed the same designs but did their own clues.

During the second class period, students cropped their photos and used PicCollage App to add clues. Image quality is an issue with closeups with our iPad 2s. Other classes will try to find the items in the images and they were included in a school assembly video.  Continue reading to see more examples.

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