Today I spent many hours recording, editing, and uploading tutorial videos that show how to create a coil basket using recycled grocery bags. This is a beloved final project for my sixth graders every year, and they were eager to work on their coil baskets from home, but wanted to have the instructions available on video in case they had trouble working independently. I set up my flip mino on a mini tripod but i really need something taller so that I can film over my own shoulder- the mini tripod has to be located so close to my hands that it can never really focus completely.
At any rate, in the past my students have only had xeroxed handouts that showed hand-drawn pictures of the coil basket weaving process, so this is a dramatic improvement, and the videos could potentially be played by my substitute as a review while I am at a day-long meeting on Thursday.
The tutorial is broken down into brief segment to allow student to select the specific step they are having trouble with. I have seen many coil basket ideas that involved recycled materials, my favorite being the Spiral Foundation, but this picture tutorial from Clever Nesting helped me the most.
I used to spend tons of money from my budget purchasing coil rope core for this project, and now Our coiling core is free AND earth friendly!
I feel like I am in the opposite of technology world right now- craft lessons galore- stitchery and weaving with all grade levels to wind down the end of the school year. I am glad to have everyone using the same materials in every grade level at the same time. Classroom teachers are glad to have a project that students can work on now that SOLs are over and the end of the school year is in view. Students are engaged in their projects, and their tired brains are getting the chance to rest on the repetition of weaving and stitchery patterns.
This all seems a simple and relaxed way to finish up the year, but I am sad to not have as many chances or as much time to weave technology into my lessons. I use the flexcam each day to teach new stitches, but my goal right now is to incorporate more technology for student use in my classroom. I have just one more week of instruction followed by major cleanup before I am finished for the year- but I keep finding new and exciting things I would like to incorporate into my classroom strategies and curriculum, and with one week left, I am not going to get the chance to try any of these things out until next year.
Maybe I will work Voicethread and digital drawing into my drawing and painting summer camps this year. I think I will start a Voicethread for students to respond to during breaks and at the beginning or end of class as a warm up/wrap up activity for each class. And I’ll check in with the camp director about computer lab access for one day of class.