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Holiday #AppSmash!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year….unless you’re a teacher and then it’s probably the most hectic time of the year instead!!

To help manage the holiday craziness, my teacher friend and I began partnering our classes for what we now call “Tech Buddies”. Think: modern-version of book buddies. Our two classes get together for an hour every month or so to collaborate on various iPad and tech projects. This allows her 5th grade students to take on a leadership role and allows my kinders to learn from an older, much cooler person than myself. Back in October when we started combining classes, the students worked together to create All About Halloween collages. This week, for Christmas, our tech buddies created “Elfie” Collages and animated them to describe their favorite part of Christmas.holidayappsmash2

Note: This activity uses the apps Pic Collage, ChatterPix Kids, and Seesaw. All of these are apps that both our classes use frequently. I would recommend going over the basics of these with your students first before jumping into this lesson.

To keep things, organized, I created a brief planning and instructions sheet for each partnership. {Grab it here} First, buddies were tasked with completing the sentence starter “My favorite part of Christmas is…” (or whatever winter holiday that child celebrates). The 5th graders really took the lead in this part helping my little ones spell and craft a complete sentence.

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Once finished, the students grabbed an iPad and begin creating their holiday collage using PicCollage Kids. Buddies took selfies, cropped their photos, and then added holiday stickers to make them look more wintry and festive.

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Then, saved collages were imported into ChatterPix kids in order to add audio. At this point, students recorded their previously-written Christmas sentences as part of the publishing process.

Finally, completed projects were uploaded into our Seesaw class. Whenever we finish a project we have a class viewing party where we watch each other’s creations and provide them with positive feedback. This is a great way to teach digital citizenship and continue fostering a sense of classroom community. Having an authentic audience is also SUPER motivating to even my most struggling students. When they know their classmates and families are watching, they are bound to work ten times harder to get it just right.

To try out this activity with your own class or tech buddies, download this free resource here!

Questions, comments, concerns? Comment below. 🙂

Wishing you all some {relatively} stress-free days before break!!!

Merry Christmas!

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