Customs Around the World
We are getting ready to celebrate our annual Multicultural Fair here at Southwest. So the focus of some of my recent lessons have had a worldly spin. I find that kids love learning about other kids all around the world. They may not understand the geography of state, country, world, but that does not dampen their enthusiasm for learning how other kids, just like them, go about their daily lives. Pebble Go has a wonderful section on Culture and Awareness as part of its database. It covers things like birthdays, schools, transportation, and games all over the world. Our students love Pebble Go so planning this project was an easy one. Students logged in to Pebble Go and went to the Culture and Awareness section. Once there, they browsed through all the topics that were available for them to choose from. After browsing, students chose the one topic they were most interested in to do their research. Pebble Go also has printable activities like the ones pictured below. This is what the students used to complete their research. They wrote facts they learned and other things that interested them. They illustrated their work once their research was complete. All of their papers will be bound together into a book that I will keep in the library for others to enjoy. Their books will also be on display in the library during our Multicultural Fair.
Projects like these also give us a chance to review copyright and the importance of citing our sources. Another element that I really like of Pebble Go is that it has a button you can click on for each of its articles that says, "Cite this source." I have talked with the students about why this is so important - probably a little too much! Because of this, students know they need to do it, and seeing this button on their Pebble Go page just reminds them that they need to write it on their work and it also shows them the correct format of doing so. Thanks, Pebble Go!
Learning to Use the Library
Third grade students are ready to learn how to use the library more effectively. I start off my third grade students with a unit on learning all about the library. We start by discussing how the library is arranged: there is a fiction section, a nonfiction section, and then an easy or an everybody section. But, how are the books in each of those sections arranged? Enter Curious George! Our former librarian, Ms. Vibbert, wrote about a Curious George video called "Book Monkey" on her blog called "Risking Failure. In the video Curious George helps out in the library. Because of this, he learns how books are organized in the library. Here is a link to that video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PamUsdpaEI
Learning to Use the Destiny Catalog Search
Now that we know how the books are arranged in each section, we need to know where to start looking. This is where I introduce the students to using the Destiny Catalog Search. I project the search screen onto my SMART Board and we talk about all the different parts. We type in a book title and then we take a look at the search results. There are so many pieces and parts here to talk about. It takes us a couple of classes to discuss and practice. I focus a lot on understanding the call numbers of the books. I call it the book's address. I tell the students that they all have an address that tells where they live. The book's call number tells where it lives on one of the shelves. We talk about the two parts of the call number: F ROW. We have to have both of those to find a book - just like I couldn't find a student's house if all they told me was they lived on a street. We have to know the specifics. Students seem to get really excited about learning this! It is like they finally have the power to find their own books! On their own! They immediately want to go search the catalog to find their books to check out for the week. This makes the librarian in me so happy! Even though I never tire of pointing out where students can find the shark books or the fairy tales or the scary books! Yeah right!