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Impact II: Projects & Lesson Plans: A New York City Bird Field Guide CD
A New York City Bird Field Guide CD

HOW IT WORKS
For the first step in producing A New York City Bird Field Guide CD, students are given an “Inspiration” handout on which they provide the information they have gathered in their classroom study of New York City birds. They do this either by hand or on the computer. Next, using various websites, they save pictures, sounds, movies, and any information they didn’t collect in the classroom in a folder on the computer. The children title their folder by the type of bird, the name of the teacher, and the initials of their project partners.

Once all the information has been collected using Microsoft Power Point, they create template slides using the “Inspiration” template as a reference and the pictures, sounds, etc. they previously saved in a folder. There are usually eight slides: Title, Physical Characteristics, Food, Nest Eggs, Habitat, Song, and “Did You Know?” Children write text to accompany the slides, making sure all relevant information is provided. Once complete, the rest of the class views the presentation in order to provide necessary feedback. The students then revise their slide shows adding timings and animation. All projects are then saved on the teacher’s computer, who then burns it on a CD that is placed in the field guide. There are approximately sixty slide shows upon completion of the project. The projects are also put on the school website for other schools to view, emulate, and record their comments. The students often visit the website to read these comments.

THE STUDENTS
There are four classes of thirty students who have all had prior experiences with computers. Students meet twice a week in the computer lab and engage in bird studies in the classroom. Their time in the lab is spent compiling information for their slide shows. Students are paired and assigned a bird by the teacher in their classroom before coming to the lab. This enables students to support each other according to their individual needs. While the students work in pairs, the teacher can also go around the lab providing the necessary support and feedback.

THE STAFF
Steven Jaffe has been teaching technology integration for the last six years, with one of those years spent as a staff developer in District 6 training teachers how to better use technology in the classroom. Besides teaching technology to children, he is in charge of maintaining the school network and working on the school website. He has done workshops at NECC and many staff development sessions on integrating technology into the curriculum. He has also received an award from Bill Gates for a project on How to Make a Virtual Vacation and worked with the State Department on creating technology standards for New York State.

WHAT YOU NEED
For this program, you will need computers with Internet access, Microsoft PowerPoint software, and an information template on which the students will fill in their bird information and any information they have collected from websites and other search engines.

OVERALL VALUE
Working on A NYC Bird Field Guide CD gives children tangible products that they can take with them to show everyone. Children in the second grade learn that there are different mediums to express what they have learned and, in producing a CD, children can see other students work from other classes and other schools.

 

View the Curriculum Unit/Dissemination Packet

CURRICULUM AREAS
Science
Language Arts
Technology

GRADES
2-12

MORE INFORMATION

Steven Jaffe
Manhattan New School-
P.S. 290
311 East 82nd Street
New York, NY 10028
jaffer@earthlink.net

Principal
Jacqui Getz

IMPACT II 
Catalog 2002-2003

 

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