Week 2:

Sharing Stories through Comics

Students - Connecting, getting started with Wiki and Edmodo

During this week,

Students will begin to explore the online spaces, wiki and edmodo and explore issues of internet safety through participating in the budd-e online cybersafety site.
Students will chose an avatar for themselves in edmodo using a copyright free image from a site such as flickr.

Teachers will
  • create a class edmodo group and assist students to join this group
  • become familiar with web tools to create comics with young learners.
  • learn how to create comic stories with these tools.
  • reflect on the use of comics in the classroom
  • explore ways to integrate comics in their classroom in ways that improve reading and writing skills of learners
  • discover mobile apps for creating comics
  • create a comic using one of the tools from this week

1. Students join Edmodo. Students select 'I am student'. This ensures they only access the private student group created for the project. (Next week you will be notified of the group code for your students to join their collaborative group. They will be allocated a group with three other schools).

Week 2 Teacher Tasks

Task 1, Day 1: How can we use comics in storytelling with young learners?

Comics and cartoons compress stories into a just a few frames. How might this be a strength in classes with young learners?

Look at Janet Bianchini's RSCON3 presentation, Fun ways to exploit comics and cartoons in the classroom. Then, browse through her Scoop.It collection of links and ideas for using comics and cartoons in the language classroom. (Note: You can subscribe to Janet's Scoop.It in order to receive updates to the collection in the future.) Use the ideas mentioned to begin your own brainstorming about ways to incorporate comics and cartoons in your own classes.

Select one of the ideas that appeals to you and share it in our Edmodo Group. Why did you like this idea? Could you imagine using it in your own classes? Comment on the ideas that other participants post, and respond to comments in our Edmodo group..

Visit the teacher tools and begin playing around with some of the comic generator tools. Post any queries you may have about the tools in the Edmodo group.

Task 2, Day 2: Exploring ways comics could be integrated into lessons

Students can create comic stories about their experiences and feelings in a particular lesson or unti. These could be collected in a Photopeach slide show.
Use comics as storytelling tools with young learners --at the beginning of a project, at the end of a project, and sometimes as the main focus of a lesson.
As story prompts, comics can help students turn limited language into stories. Students can also practice reading and writing skills, and if you have students record narration for their story they'll get a lot of speaking practice, too. (If you say, "repeat this 10 times, students will groan" but if you say, "you can re-record until you are happy with your narration" they won't notice that they've repeated and listened with a keen ear for pronunciation MORE than ten times!)

For older children and teens, the attraction of comic creation tools is a powerful incentive for writing and revision (the reward after the hard work).
Finally, comics can be used to reinforce story structure (beginning, middle, end), paraphrasing skills, and spelling. Here's an example from a lesson after we'd talked about the parts of a story. The task was to create a story with a beginning, middle, and end in 3 or 4 frames. The first draft focused on the story content; the final draft focused on spelling and sentence structure. Meaning comes first, but conventions (like spelling and grammar) are important if you plan on sharing your writing.

In the first case, the comic was the prompt for the lesson, in the second, it was the culminating activity, and in the third case it was the focus of the lesson. Like all tools, comics are flexible. Can you see a way to incorporate comics into your own teaching? How could you use these tools? Please share and discuss your ideas in our edmodo group..

Checklist of Week 2 TasksI have.....
  • joined my students into their edmodo group