updated lesson idea
Title: Writing Friendly Letters Using Weblogs
Author: Carolina Counts, teacher Mueller Charter School
Summary: Together with my 2nd grade students we will be writing a friendly letter to another class from around the world and posting to a weblog. We will be using the internet for this project, specifically a weblogging site. This will be our online journal (like a pen pal) about us and learning about another culture from around the world.
Context: To be implemented in a 2nd grade classroom with 6 to 7 year-old children.
Duration: This is an ongoing project that will hopefully last the entire school year. I hope to post and receive a response at least once a week.
Goals: To use weblogging as an instructional tool to teach writing using friendly letters. I hope students will learn some similarities and differences between the 2nd grade classes from around the world. Later in the year we will be sharing our ideas on our favorite books and discussing what we are learning in Science and Social Studies.
Standards Addressed - 2.2 Write a friendly letter complete with the date, salutation, body, closing, and signature.
Participants: Another 2nd grade class from somewhere around the world will also be involved
Process: First, the teacher will need to find a participating 2nd grade class from somewhere around the world. I suggest using ePals or similar website. After finding a class to participate discuss with the class the parts of a friendly letter. Next, in table groups invite students to come up with one question and one sentence to include in the letter. The student will brainstorm ideas together. Then the teacher will type it into the computer as the students are observing on the big screen TV. Finally, as a class check the letter for correct punctuation, spelling and grammar.
Resources: ePals and blogger
• You can only use students first names (which will be alias names).
• No pictures of students with names.
• Discussion must stay on assigned topic.
• Teacher must ok all posts.
• All language must be appropriate for school (no bad words or put downs)
• Respect others opinions.
• If the rules are not followed you will not be able to post.
Products: What I hope to have is an online journal of reflections, questions, and comments from two 2nd grade classrooms that are located in different parts of the world.
Evaluation: I will know this was effective by going back and reflecting on the student’s letter writing. I could evaluate it at the end of the year by having students write a friendly letter to me about what their favorite part of the writing to the other class was.