Tag Archives: Program Lists

Best 3rd grade VC programs

So you’re a third grade teacher and trying to pick the best VC program for this year? Here are what I consider to be your best choices.

Social Studies: Regions
If you’re studying regions, here are some great options.

  1. Musical Geography of America, Cleveland Institute of Music. Also advertised for 5th grade, but we had a 3rd grade class do this last year and it was excellent. Highly recommended.
  2. Geography from the Intrepid.Sea.Air.Space Museum is also excellent for 3rd grade region studies. We had a class do this last year who loved it!
  3. Geography: Baseball Coast to Coast from the Baseball Hall of Fame would work well too. It’s advertised for 4th & up, but I’m sure they could tailor it as needed.
  4. I just found this one from NY. Regions of the U.S. from McClure Productions. Haven’t seen it yet but it sounds excellent!
  5. For my local teachers: If you want to connect to a class in a specific region to discuss their area, let me know and I can find a class for you! Another project idea would be to hook up a couple local 3rd grade classes and give clues about a region and try to guess which was presented…. These options would all be free.

Language Arts

  1. Of course, don’t forget the possibility of participating in Read Across America in March 2006. That would be free.
  2. For my local teachers: We have some good ASK programs coming up that you’ll want to consider. Remember we send you the books.
    ****Stellaluna by Janell Cannon; Grade Level: 2-3, Topic: Bats.
    Date: November 3, 2005: 9:30-10:30; 10:45-11:45; and 1:00-2:00 p.m.
    You’ll interview an expert.
    ****Ice Bear and Little Fox by Jonathan London, Grades 2-3. Topic: Polar Bears
    Date: March 16, 9:30-10:15 and 10:30-11:15 a.m. (3 slots each time).
    You’ll interview an expert.
    ****The Hard Times Jar by Ethel Footman Smothers, Grade Level: 3
    Topic: Poverty, value of education, economics
    Date: Still working on scheduling, 2nd semester. This one will also be available to Michigan classes through TWICE but hasn’t been announced officially yet.
    You’ll interview the author.
    ****Searching the Noonday Trail by Johnny Tuitel. Grade Level: 3-4. Topic: Cerebral Palsy. Date: Still working on scheduling, 2nd semester. This one will also be available to Michigan classes through TWICE but hasn’t been announced officially yet.
    You’ll interview the author.

Of all the possibilities we’ve correlated to the Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations for 3rd grade, I’d say choose one of these providers:

  1. COSI Toledo, one of our absolute favorite providers because of the hands-on experiments you do during the program.
  2. Lake County Waste Management District for their environment programs. The presenter is an incredible storyteller and connects very well with the students. Plus they are free!
  3. If you are studying adaptations, try the Animal Adaptations program from the Columbus Zoo or the Cincinnati Zoo, my two favorite zoos.

To my local teachers, email me or visit www.remc11.k12.mi.us/dl to schedule any of these videoconferences.

Middle School Geography Videoconferences

There are a number of excellent opportunities for middle school geography classes. This list is for Michigan 6th grade classes studying Western Hemisphere and 7th grade classes studying Eastern Hemisphere. However, the ideas apply to other grade levels if your school studies geography in a different grade level.

  1. MysteryQuest: World Geography. We run this project every year with sessions for Western Hemisphere, Europe, Asia, and Africa. It has been in the fall, but due to state testing moving to October, we’ll be running this in late January, early February. My teachers pick the dates & times, then we open up registration for all the rest of you! There’s no way we could run enough for everyone interested, so you’ll find information on running your own there as well if you want to do that. MysteryQuest is free for my teachers and the rest of you too!
  2. For my local teachers, you could connect with a class in another country! I’ve been collecting contacts and could set you up with a class in Alberta or Ontario, Canada, or in Guatemala, Costa Rica, Mexico, Pakistan, or Taiwan. We could possibly find other partner classes too. These are free!
  3. I would really like to do an Around the World project like I’ve seen online a few places. I don’t really want to stay up all night, but we could do a morning to evening time frame. Also we could focus on just one hemisphere as well. This idea would be free and we could have lots of local classes participate. Here are links of websites who have done this: Around the World in a Day, Boston, 2002; NJEdgeNet 2003, 2004 and a press release.
  4. There are a few good content provider programs on Canada: Inuit: Survival in the Canadian Arctic, and Kigluait Adventures has some programs that mention Canada.
  5. Another good one would be the Cleveland Institute of Music’s new Musical Geography of the World. I really want to see this one, so to my teachers: write a mini-grant for this one!!
  6. For Central and South America, tying in with science and doing something on the rainforest might be good.
  7. For Eastern Hemisphere, try programs on Africa or Asia.
  8. Searching geography in the standards field also will bring up a good list. You’ll have to sort through the U.S. geography ones, though.

This should give any middle school geography teacher a good start at the possibilities!

To my local teachers, email me or visit www.remc11.k12.mi.us/dl to schedule any of these videoconferences.

Best Kindergarten VC Programs

So you’re a Kindergarten teacher and you want to do a videoconference this year? What are the best interactive programs for kindergarten level?

  1. One of my absolute favorite programs is Let’s Go to the Show from the Cleveland Institute of Music. Highly interactive. Students sing and dance during the program. It’s excellent! You have to be able to clear the floor in your distance learning room to do this one, so hopefully you don’t have fancy furniture bolted down.
  2. See the K2K Connection 2005 post on Joan Roehre’s blog. A year long partnership between two classes. I quote: Kindergarten (YES- Kindergarten!) teachers Lynette Powers (Southport) and Kim Frost (Somers) are once again connecting their students throughout the year using videoconference technology. Starting in September with “All ABout Me” students will present and share interests to their buddy at the partner school. Projects following are “Monster”, “Nursery Rhyme”, “What Should You Do?”, “Catch a Leprechaun”, “Activity Riddles” and lastly, a face-to-face picnic in May!
    Sounds like a great year long project. I’m sure the kids love it!
  3. Read Across America! Getting matched up with another K-2 class for an exchange is a great way to start off with videoconferencing. Techs should register in November, teachers in December.
  4. The Center for Puppetry Arts has great hands-on programs. Check out the K-2 programs. Learn a little, glue a little, learn a little more! End up with a finished puppet! Perfect for short attention spans!
  5. The Cleveland Museum of Art is another great provider. They have two K-1 programs. I haven’t seen them yet, but they look excellent! We love the CMA programs, especially their green screen technology!
  6. Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum (new provider) has a program for winter on Critters in the Cold.
  7. Space Center Houston has two K-2 programs. They are new this year too – just got a flyer in the mail a couple weeks ago. Worth checking out it seems.
  8. Camden Children’s Garden has several K-2 programs. Haven’t seen these either but they sound really good.
  9. The Cleveland Zoo has K-2 programs, but they schedule them and you have to sign up quickly because they are free & fill up fast! Their schedule for this fall isn’t out yet.
  10. If you search our database for PreK, you get several programs that are good for young students.
  11. Michigan teachers, be sure to also check out our Grade Level Content Expectations & Videoconferences project.

Not a comprehensive list, but a list of favorites!

To my local teachers, email me or visit www.remc11.k12.mi.us/dl to schedule any of these videoconferences.

Career Videoconferences

Today I’m sending via email to my schools a list of career videoconferences. The Berrien County ISD Career Technical Education program is paying for a few videoconferences for Berrien County middle school and high school students this year. I’ve selected these programs for their ability to be scheduled during the teachers’ class period and because I’m mostly familiar with the quality of the programming. Next year I’ll probably share these types of lists via blog instead of email. We’ll see what my districts prefer.

COSI Columbus’ Electronic Experts $110 with TWICE discount. (Can’t be scheduled anytime, but still usually very good quality expert interviews.)

These can all be scheduled within a teacher’s class period as long as the provider has that spot open in their schedule.