Content Module Reflection
The unit I chose to create for this assignment was the grade 3 science unit, plant growth and changes, which falls under the Newfoundland and Labrador curriculum.
I found creating the first content module to be quite easy. I made myself familiar with the content that was required to be taught and decided to use Google slides to share my information. In this module, students would also be invited to participate in a sorting activity, an individual discussion activity and a group discussion activity. Unfortunately with Google classrooms there is only so much you can do, and only so much you can display on a page. While I would prefer to have all my content in one place, rather than linking my course off to other venues, I had to make my information accessible. I delivered my content in a simple way using pictures and short pieces of text since a grade 3 student would only have a short attention span. Also, by creating interactive activities to go with the module it would keep the students engaged in learning.
As I made my way through my first module, I found myself going back and making edits to my introductory module so that it would be more cohesive throughout. I think creating a course from start to finish requires a lot of edits and reflection and I think that if I was continuing to develop this course I would make many changes before I was content.
For my digital story, I wrote a story/poem called “It Starts with a Seed…” that is all about how plants grow and change throughout the seasons, without going into too much scientific detail. It addressed the colours of different plants as well as their form – their shapes and sizes – as they go through the cycle of seasons. While I do think I took a different approach than others for this assignment, I think for the grade I chose, and the course I chose, this was the most appropriate way to create a digital story for my unit. As a primary teacher, when starting a new unit, I like to always start with some sort of story that is related to the topic to get students to begin thinking about that particular subject. It is a way to anchor my unit. By doing this it helps students make connections to what they already know and what they are about to learn. It also helps them get engaged and excited about what they are going to learn. From here we will build upon their current knowledge to help new learning make sense. Also, although it is unlikely for this topic, some students may not have a past memory of this so it will provide them with some foundational content to build upon (Activating Prior Knowledge, 2017).
I chose to use the tool PowToon to create this digital story. This was my first time using this but I have seen others in this program use it. I found it extremely easy to use. I felt that with the playfulness of this tool it would be very appropriate for the grade three age level.
Overall, I enjoyed the process of creating this course. It was interesting to use Google classrooms and I now feel that I have a good understanding of how this venue works. I look forward to being able to use the information I have learned through this experience, in the future.
(2017, September 11). Activating Prior Knowledge. Mindsteps. Retrieved from https://mindstepsinc.com/2012/09/activating-prior-knowledge/