Digital Unit: Citizenship... I Didn't Even Need to Be There

Saturday, February 2, 2013
Last year I created this digital unit that the kids absolutely loved. I was totally jazzed to implement it again this year and I was a little disappointed my life took over and I actually had to be out of school for two of the five days of the project. The funny thing is, I had created a digital unit where they would not only create independently but also learn independently. Goal accomplished! They were able to continue on with everything without me even being there.
I needed to teach my kids the basic concepts on citizenship and I had always done a quick worksheet to quickly cover the standard but I always knew I wasn't doing it justice. After a little investigation I was able to create a fun learning experience that gave them room for creativity. Here is a quick look at the project:

1. The kiddos watched a BrainPop on Citizenship and took the quiz. Google and BrainPop have a wonderful relationship which allows children to submit their score to a Google spreadsheet in my account. It's wonderful because it creates a grade book in my Drive account where each quiz taken is a separate tab in a spreadsheet.

2. In order for students to learn who can become a U.S. citizen, I had them play Immigration Nation on iCivics.  In this game students learn the different reasons people can become a U.S. citizen and give students practice on identifying and classifying these reasons.  Students took notes as they played the game.

3. Next the kids had to play Responsibility Launcher at iCivics.  In this game students learned about the things that citizens have to do and the things they should do to make a better country.  Again, they took notes as the played the game.

4. Once they were done gathering information, the kids had to create a presentation that would help people understand the what it means to be a citizen of the United States of America.

In order to do this, kids were given the option of three different digital mediums:
     1. Google Presentation - This is Google's own version of PowerPoint and my kids are masters at it.  The
         benefit is they can share it with me.
     2. Prezi - Prezi is considered a "moving presenter".  I works along the same lines as PowerPoint but
         instead of having multiple slides, you have one work space and you zoom around the space.

     3. GoAnimate - OMG my kids loooooove this.  You type in your dialogue and it creates an animated movie for you.  There is a quick version which just requires you to type dialogue and a full video maker which gives a bit more freedom in design.

For two years now my students have really enjoyed this project and have learned so much.  The games really help the children work with the information and they really loved the creation part.

Check out what they made!!!

Citizen by musicdog on GoAnimate

Animated Presentations - Powered by GoAnimate.

1 comment

  1. Kara, do you still do this project? Does your school have a site license to use Go Animate? Is there an alternative? My school won't buy it.