Friday, December 20, 2013

We Heart Union Hill Video Contest

Eleven 1st graders, one 2nd grader, fifteen 3rd graders, eighteen 4th graders, and twenty-four 5th graders worked hard to create a video highlighting the things they love about Union Hill. They are using Paper Slides, Animoto, MovieMaker, PhotoStory, and PowToon to create their videos.

They gave up their recess time for 2 weeks to work on this exciting project. Their finished products were showcased on Broadcast and each class voted for their favorite. The winner will go on to compete in the district contest.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Hour of Code

The hour of code campaign aims to demystify computer science for students across the country by taking them through introductory tutorials  that can be completed online, on a smartphone, or even unplugged.

I know of 13 Union Hill teachers that are tackling the Hour of Code this week!

Here are some photos of Mr. Hawthorn's class working on programming with light-bot.

Here's Mrs. Galvan's Class!

The Hour of Code was a HUGE International success. Check out this infographic to see what I'm talking about. I'm so proud that Union Hill was a part of this!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

O'Nan's Students are Going Google

Union Hill teachers and students are getting excited about going Google. Here are some pictures from Mrs. O'Nan's 4th grade class. 

Friday, November 29, 2013

Using Vokis to Help Students Proofread

What’s a Voki?

A voki is a talking avatar. Ms.Oehler’s classes created vokis so they could listen to their writing aloud and find mistakes that they may have missed otherwise.

Example 3

We are currently using a Voki on broadcast to advertise for the holiday store. Thanks Ms. Burris for creating it!

What great ways to use Vokis! What other ways have you used them in your classes?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Google Apps For Education

3rd, 4th, and 5th Grade teachers and students are getting excited about using Google Apps for Education in their classes. This month they've logged in, created their first google docs, and shared documents with their teachers.

Ms. Uhlig's 4th grade class is using a shared Google Presentation to work with a partner on their Famous Texans Project.

Friday, October 18, 2013

"Wonder"ful Library Lesson

Kinder students used the Promethean board in their library lesson today. They read, Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend by Mélanie Watt and then talked about different ways to make friends. The popular suggestions were to "sit with them, be nice, and smile." This activity goes along with the theme of Round Rock ISD's One Book, One Community Program book Wonder, by R.J. Palacio.

drawing a smile on the promethean board
Kinder friend drawing "smile" on the Promethean Board.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Kinder classes practice logging in

This week and next, our kinder classes are getting their first chance to experience the computer lab. They come in ready to take on the first hurdle- logging in! Something we may take for granted, pressing CTRL + ALT + DEL is often a stretch for their small hands.

Smile for the camera!

Hard at work.
Their usernames are a combination of letters and numbers with a password that's 8 characters long- which adds another level of difficulty. Through hard work and the help of adults in the room, they were all able to log in. Students will strive to master logging in independently.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Students Learn Web 2.0 Way to Create Bibliographies

Research is an important part of the language arts curriculum in the third and fouth nine weeks. Students learn how to locate information about their topic and to think critically about the credibility of that information. Often, they also have to create a bibliography - a list of all of the sources of the information that they used for their projects.

Students in Ms. Yesenik's TAG class presented their Independent Study Projects recently. They learned how to use an online citation generator called EasyBib to create bibliographies for their projects. They decided that using EasyBib was quicker and easier than following a printed format and trying to make their information fit the model. This Web 2.0 tool makes a tedious task less time-consuming.

This is Garrison with his Loch Ness Monster project, with a screen shot of his Works Cited page below.

This is Juliana with her Acting project; a screen shot of her Works Cited page is included below. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Kinder Kids Master Logging In to Network!

Ms. Smith's Kindergarten Class
Students in Ms. Smith's kindergarten class met an important technology goal today. Each student was able to independently log on to the Round Rock ISD network using his/her personal user name and password!

Students' user names include their last names, and some of their names are quite long. And since passwords are secret, students only see dots instead of the password they are typing. So, logging on to the network can be quite tricky. Hooray for all of the boys and girls in Ms. Smith's class who worked hard to master this skill!

Friday, April 12, 2013

"Build Your Wild Self" Enhances Science Instruction

In a recent science unit, second graders were learning about the physical characteristics and behaviors of animals. Their lesson was based on TEKS 2.10A "Observe, record, and compare how the physical characteristics and behaviors of animals help them meet their basic needs such as fins help fish move and balance in the water."

Students in Ms. Haney's class visited  the Build Your Wild Self web site. This activity allowed them to explore various animals and compare specific body parts from different animals. Some of their creatures are featured below. The students enjoyed the activity and learned a lot about physical characteristics, too.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Information Sharing Through Paper Slide Videos

First grade students have been learning about reading and understanding expository text - text that informs.  Students researched topics they were interested in, using online web sites like PebbleGo as well as books. Students wrote and illustrated brief compositions about their topic. Then they used document cameras to create paper slide videos to share what they learned.

Vicente, who researched volcanoes, and Daniel, who learned about Pluto, are in Ms. Cervantes' first grade dual language class. Their pieces were written and recorded in Spanish, because instruction in science is conducted in Spanish in dual language classrooms.

Our first graders are truly growing as readers, writers, and speakers!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Students Take TELPAS Assessment Online

The season is officially spring, but this cool weather feels more like late winter. For many students, though, this is "testing" season!

Students log in to computers in preparation for the TELPAS online reading assessment.
Students in grades 2 - 5 who are considered to be English Language Learners (ELL) take an online reading assessment as part of TELPAS: Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System. This online reading assessment is scored along with teacher evaluations of writing, speaking, and listening. Students are exited from their ELL status when they become proficient in reading, writing, speaking, and listening. These assessments are a federal requirement. In all, 101 Union Hill students took the online TELPAS reading assessment.

Students prepare for the online reading assessment by completing online tutorials. Each tutorial helps students become comfortable with the format of their grade level's online test and the tools that can be used, like highlighter, pencil, and X-out tools.

Here are links to the online tutorials, if you'd like to see what the online TELPAS reading assessment is like:

TELPAS Grade 2 Tutorial
TELPAS Grade 3 Tutorial
TELPAS Grades 4-5 Tutorial

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Fifth Grade Artists Use Digital Cameras for Project

Fifth grade students in Ms. Kubin's art classes used digital cameras as the starting point for an interesting art project. The first step was for students to take photos of each other, which they then uploaded, saved, and printed.

This is Jon's art inspiration photo.
Students then traced their photos onto a foam board printing "plate" which was used with one ink color to make prints on colored paper. The next step was to carve more into the foam board plate and do a reduction print with a second ink color. This step was repeated with additional carving and printing with a third ink color. Pictured below is Jon's finished project - a striking piece of art!

Jon's art was chosen for display at the RRISD administration building.

Monday, March 18, 2013

STEMscopes Science Investigations Aid Learning

Fourth graders use laptops to gather science data.

Students in Ms. Elander's fourth grade class used a STEMscopes interactive investigation to collect and analyze data on February 28. They used the data to identify sequences and predict patterns of change in shadows. Ms. Elander said, "They recorded the direction of the sunlight, shadows, angle of the sun, and length of shadows from different times of the day to help them determine the relationship between the height of the sun in the sky and the length of the shadows."

STEMscopes is an online science program that is aligned to the science TEKS. The site includes activities and interactive lessons for students as well as lesson plans and strategies for teachers. It is a valuable component of science instruction because it allows students to use virtual experiences to better understand science concepts.  

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Fact Family Practice with Kidspiration

Students in Mr. Magos' first grade class used Kidspiration to work with math fact families. The activity integrates math and technology skills.

First, Mr. Magos gathered students in front of the Promethean board, so he could demonstrate how to locate the activity. Learning how to navigate through menus is an important technology skill. Then he showed students how to use the tools. Learning how to select and how to click and drag are other mouse skills that students practice with this activity. Students then use color tiles to create fact families, which helps students understand the relationship between addition and subtraction.

Tyler works intently with her mouse to complete the activity.
Riley's screen shows how students select color tiles and add them to their  boards to create visuals of fact families.
This is Bradley's completed fact family for 10, 3, and 7.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Kinder Kids Work on Writing & Technology Skills

Kindergarten students in Ms. Manibusan's class worked on a writing lesson and technology lesson that were integrated. Students used Kidspiration to open new documents, add their names, locate and insert pictures, and then type complete sentences about their picture.

This is Isaiah and his work:

This is Logan and his work:

Friday, January 18, 2013

Third Graders Create Videos about Famous Americans

Third grade students worked on researching famous Americans. This unit included both language arts and social studies learning objectives. Some students shared information about their famous person by creating paper slide videos. They used document cameras and microphones to produce their videos.

This video about Amelia Earhart was created by Mariah and Juliana in Ms. De La Garza's class.

This video about Benjamin Franklin was created by Katia and Lizbeth in Ms. Garza's class.

One last example - Liam in Ms. Russell's class created this video about Michael Jordan.