Friday, April 23, 2004

A Professor Responds by Computer to the Writing of Elementary Students.

A Professor Responds by Computer to the Writing of Elementary Students. This is a quaint article from 1992. This was from when e-mail was new and novel.

From the site:

During the Summer of 1990, I responded to the writing of 20 fourth through seventh graders from a computer installed in my home in Bloomington, Indiana by the Bartholomew County (Indiana) Community School Corporation. Working daily with their classroom teacher in a summer school computer writing class that drew students from all over Columbus, Indiana, the students sent me 263 pieces of writing in 4 weeks. The experience is one that I will never forget, and one that I hope the young writers and their teacher, Vickie Osman, enjoyed.

The students wrote their drafts on Microsoft Works. Then their teacher attached their files to messages that she sent by modem to me with an electronic mail program called CCMail. Microsoft Works is essentially a user-friendly program that presented few problems to the upper elementary students as they wrote daily anything ranging from a 3-line haiku to 10 to 20 computer-screen stories. Only a few students seemed to have any difficulty composing on a computer. Occasionally, messages were scrambled or even lost because of faulty commands, but no one quit because of technical difficulties. At times, Mrs. Osman and I decided that we were experiencing more problems than the students, primarily because we were working with 20 times as many messages as each individual student. She had to make certain that all of the students' writing (sometimes as many as 40 a day) were attached to her CCMail message to me. I had to make certain that I responded daily to all messages sent by these students, who had just completed grades 3 through 6.

Of the 20 students enrolled in the class, 2 entered fourth grade the following fall; 9 entered fifth; 5 were eligible for sixth; 4 would be in seventh.

Asked on a questionnaire to report their average grade in English, 5 noted that they earned mostly A's; 7 received B's; 3 C's; 5 D's and F's.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Preventing Violence by Elementary School Children

Preventing Violence by Elementary School Children. I always thought by working in the primary grades that I would avoid violent students. After all, they can't be that dangerous until they get big, right. Boy was I wrong...

From the site:

Young children face a vast and increasing array of challenges as they attempt to develop prosocial competencies and a conciliatory, nonviolent approach to life. They suffer from a lack of closeness with adults, but also from an overabundance of exposure to graphic violence in the news and entertainment media and, increasingly, in their homes and communities. All these forces affect the temperament of children, and each child expresses a unique set of responses to potentially inflammatory situations.

Mental health and education professionals generally agree that it is essential to begin developing prosocial attitudes and behaviors in children at a very young age because aggression that is not remedied nearly always leads to later acts of delinquency (Slaby, Roedell, Arezzo, & Kendrix, 1995). This digest presents an overview of effective antiviolence strategies for use with elementary school children that educators can integrate into their schools and classrooms.

PRINCIPLES AND GOALS OF VIOLENCE PREVENTION PRACTICES

The most effective antiviolence efforts focus on measures that prevent all types of children's bad conduct: "aggression", including undirected anger, such as tantrums, and lashing out at others; "bullying", which is targeting someone thought to be weaker; and "hate bullying", which is victimizing someone of a different (and perceived to be inferior) gender, race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation (U.S. Department of Education, 1999).

Monday, April 19, 2004

Educational Ideas from 5-6 Grade Connection

Educational Ideas from 5-6 Grade Connection. Ideas, tips, and lesson plans created by an international group of teachers belonging to the 5-6 Grade Connection Listserve.

From the site:

5-6 Connection is a group of teachers from all around the world who have come together to form a 'virtual teachers' lounge' and share ideas from management to subject lessons to recipes! We intend to present some of the ideas we have come up with to you... but if you want more, maybe you should think about joining us!

This is what our 'Listmom' has to say about 5-6 Grade Connection...

'5-6gradeconnection is a "connected" group of teachers world wide who do a lot of sharing and creating materials besides discussing various topics and concerns with each other. Connection also stays connected having an email prayer chain, and creating a directory of its members.

Our biggest population is 5th and 6th, but we do have other levels besides LD, ED, Sped, Music, Principals, and various others on our list.

Connection has 2 free weeks, and then asks $5 as a one time fee to help pay for the server. Name, city and state are only required before approval into Connection. Other information is in the Connection welcome letter which you receive after subscribing.