Dot Day in my middle/high school library September 16-20. All three of our 6th grade reading classes as well as all three 7th grade English classes participated during their library time with me. My 8th grade elective class also participated. From the elementary school, a 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 5th grade class all came up to my library to Skype and connect with another class for Dot Day.
My 6th grade classes made trading cards to send to our Skyping friends. One class skyped with Tiffany Whitehead in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Alaina Laperouse's class of 6th graders AND Matthew Winner in Elkridge, Maryland and a class of his 5th graders. The other two classes skyped with two more of Mr. Winner's 5th grade classes. Both Tiffany and Matthew are friends of mine, so connecting our classes and seeing each other made it that much more fun!
Our 7th grade classes all skyped with classes at Tiffany's school in Louisiana. By the end of the week I had learned a lot about Baton Rouge and I hope my students did too. Each 7th grader made a bookmark to send to our new friends at Central Middle School.
My 8th grade class was able to join in with one of our Skype sessions with Tiffany and her 7th graders. They had colored & created 3D dots with the ColAR app. My 8th graders were also able to unexpectedly meet Mr. Winner and one of his younger classes when he unexpectedly needed to connect and share at the end of the day. My 8th graders modeled wonderful behavior as they listened to the younger students share and talk.
The 1st and 2nd grade classes who visited and skyped from my library also connected with Mr. Winner and the same grade level in Maryland. We all shared and read The Dot together. Students also shared the dots they had created. We had so much fun talking with Mr. Winner's students! The 5th grade class connected with another class at Tiffany's huge school in Louisiana. The students took turns asking questions about life in each state, favorite foods, and school details. We were so impressed with the impeccable manners of the students in Louisiana, but a bit surprised to learn they eat frogs!
The 4th grade class who visited had an amazing time connecting with Patrick Andrus's class in Minnesota during a mystery Skype, the first ever for both classes. The students took turns asking questions to pinpoint where the class/school was located. It's always interesting to watch the students interact as they hurry o process the information given and in turn ask a response question.
Every student who visited the library signed our 2013 Dot to display in the library. Many students also created dots for fun & tested out the ColAR app on the library iPad. Another favorite activity was an ongoing Dots tournament for a math enrichment class and during random times in the library. (I was thrilled to receive a Dots shirt that week from General Electric which I proudly wore!)
An unexpected delight happened when Aimee Winner, Matthew's wife, skyped a class of 3rd grade music students with me during my planning. I read The Dot to them and they in turn sang to me. It completely made my day!
Various staff members created dots which I displayed in our library windows as well as in an online gallery. Students and staff could vote on who they thought created each dot as well as view pictures from Dot Day connections at an online site.
All in all it was a fun-filled week of making our mark, connecting, and collaborating with others. I am so glad to be able to participate in this fun day (week) each year!