After break we began our unit about the instruments of the orchestra. I start the unit by using the game at the fabulous Carnigie Hall website. I have been using this game for many years now. It’s starting to show it’s age a bit (the main character using a flip phone) but the information is stellar and the challenges are good. The game starts out by showing the four instrument families. We pause and talk about the visual similarities in each families (brass – have tubes, have bell at end of tube, look like gold, etc.) then they have to face the challenge of working together as a class on the Smartboard to open the lock on the garage door in the game. After we have completed this I need to find out how much of the discussions and the game ideas have stuck with the kids. Last year I used a short multiple choice test on our class set of 12 iPods to see what everyone knew but this year I have new materials to use……….The 2nd grade is now 1 to 1 with an Andriod tablet called a Unobook. So many more possibilities!
This year each student is going to label a screen shot of one of the My Singing Monsters Islands. I decided to give them screen shots of my islands via Dropbox since their islands didn’t have a great variety of monsters yet. We will use Skitch to pull the pictures up and label them and then send them to the teacher via email. I will have the students put their name on their picture and they will also include their class and name in the subject line of the email (this makes for less clicking when I grade). We have already done a sample via the projector and my AppleTV using my Shugabush Island! The kids are thinking about the instrument families in new ways and they get to revisit our beloved My Singing Monsters game. It’s a winner!