I had all of my 9th grade science students do a Children's story about astronomy. They had to have facts, but tell it in a creative way that could be read and understood by elementary aged students! I had great success with this.
Last year my students did the same project, but they created a paper book where they illustrated each page and wrote the words on the page and turned in a book. When I discovered VoiceThread, I thought this would be a great way to integrate technology in the classroom and make it fun and engaging as they wrote their stories. This was much more interesting, plus the students were able to see other students in their class, and comment on their stories. It was a great way to create collaboration and community in my classroom.
Assignment: They had 5 Topics to choose from:
- Solar System
- The Sun
- Life cycles of Stars
- Celestial objects
Each Topic had the facts that they had to cover that would show their understanding of the topic and creatively put it in a way that children could understand it. They also had the choice to illustrate their own pictures, or find pictures on the internet to upload and use in their story.
Creating the VoiceThreads was the easiest part! The most difficult part of the project was getting the computer access, and the speed of loading pictures when I had my whole class working on it at the same time. I advised students to upload the pictures at home and work on the rest at school.
I had the students create a storyboard on paper before they began their VoiceThread.
I learned that it was very engaging to have students use this technology. They were excited and involved in all the aspects, especially once they found how easy it was to create.