Tuesday, 1 September 2015

It's school again!

After almost two months of summer holidays it's quite difficult to go back to school routine. But at the same time it's so exciting to start something new. In this case, a new school year.
It will be my 10th year of working as a teacher, so it will be special. I have so many plans and so many hopes. I will work hard to achieve my goals this year.
Have a great school year!

Monday, 6 July 2015

A week in the Future Classroom Lab

Last week was a real blessing. I can admit that I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth. My dreams simply come true.

One of my dreams was to visit the Future Classroom Lab in Brussels, Belgium. And I got that opportunity thanks to eTwinning National Support Service in Poland. I attended a 5-day course "Interactive technologies for the future classroom" (29th June - 3rd July). Everything was amazing. We had the best teacher trainer - Gert Lemmens (with a soft "G") and the best group of wonderful teachers from Italy, Portugal, Poland, Spain and the Northern Ireland. It was a real pleasure to work with them. Once again I felt being a part of an awesome community.
DAY 1
I arrived to Brussels at midnight, as my plane from Cracow to Warsaw was delayed and I didn't make it for my plane to Brussels. At least I had two hours to "explore" Warsaw Chopin Airport ;) 
On Monday we started classes at 9:30 a.m. We were welcomed by our teacher, Gert (his name was difficult to pronounce), and Elina Jokisalo, who works at European Schoolnet. We started with an ice-breaking activity "Animal farm". The first person I met was Susan from the Norther Ireland. She is a beauty therapy and hair-dressing specialist. Then we had a funny dancing exercise ;)
It turned out that our group is very creative and eager to learn new things. The first tool we were shown was Mentimeter. It's a cloud-based tool for real-time interaction. It's really simple yet powerful tool. You have to sign up at Mentimeter website and then create a question. Your audience goes to the specific website, enters the code and sends their answers. They can use any device connected to the Internet. If you don't have computers or tablets in your classroom, you can ask your students to BYOD (bring your own device).

First our teacher showed us this tool and we used it as students. Then we signed up and created our own questions and shared them with the group. We had a lot of fun.
Another tool we learned was Socrative. We used this tool to create online quizes.

DAY 2
On Tuesday we worked in groups planning eTwinning projects. I worked with two primary teachers from Italy. At first it was a little bit difficult to communicate as they barely spoke English, but they were so nice that we made it :) We designed a project about butterflies. It's an outline of a project for now.
Next step was FCL tour. Elina showed us every Learning Zone and explained their functions. FCL is formed by six different zones: create, interact, investigate, develop, present and exchange.


It would be wonderful if my classroom looked like this.
After coffee break we explored Kahoot - a free game-based platform for creating quizes. We had a lot of fun, as most of the quizes we created were humorous.
This busy day ended with a QR-code game. We were divided into groups and we had to do 8 activities (e.g. sining "Help" by the Beatles, dancing to "YMCA" or "Macarena", taking unusual group selfie etc).

DAY 3
On Wednesday we explored two tools: i3learnhub and Stop Motion Studio.
i3learnhub is an online collaborative learning platform (IWB software). It doesn't require installation, and it works with any device connected to the Internet. Once again we worked in groups and our task was to create a lesson. I worked with Magda and Salvador from Spain. We had a great time using this tool.
Next tool was Stop Motion Studio - an app for stop motion moviemaking. We worked in different groups - I was in a group with Isabell from Portugal and Thomas from the Norther Ireland. We had to create a short movie. The topic was "Friends".
Here's our work:
video

DAY 4
On Thursday we learned another tool for creating interactive quizes - Quizziz. It's quite similar to Kahoot and very easy to use. My friends prepared very challenging quizes.



Prowise is another online tool that looks like IWB software. It also can be used to create quizes, but it is not as intuitive as other tools. This time I worked with a Polish group. We prepared a lesson and a quiz about the UK. 
I was very good at maths games that our teacher made for us. I was the winner of the first game ;)

 
DAY 5  
Friday was a very emotional day. In the morning we had to say goodbye to our friends from the Northern Ireland, as they went home early. It wasn't so much fun without them.
Before a coffee break we learned how to create instruction videos with Educreations. Unfortunately, the Internet conection wasn't good that day. It was a mission impossible to do anything.
Our last task was to do something creative using the tools we learned during the course. We worked in groups for the last time. I worked with Carla from Portugal and two Italian teachers. We decided to use Stop Motion Studio and a box of Lego bricks. We've prepared our own version of "Wrecking Ball" video by Miley Cyrus.
Here it is:
video
 

Friday, 26 June 2015

Summer holidays with QR codes

For me it's time to begin another summer holidays. Last week my students asked me to prepare a lesson with smartphones. It wasn't easy, as the Internet connection in my classroom is very poor (Wi-Fi doesn't work). Yet we tried really hard to make this lesson happened. Some of my students were familiar with QR codes, but for most of them it was something new. 
I've prepared four QR codes and printed them in four different colours. The students scaned the codes and solve the puzzles linked with them. Then they had to put the words in the right order to make a holiday sentence.
Here are my QR codes (in a random order). Have fun!
My students at work: