Saturday, May 3, 2014

2nd Graders Find Inspiration For Research From Isabella and Alexander & Information From Kids Infobits!

This week 2nd graders became researchers! They began their journey by reading two beautiful books by Jennifer Fosberry, My Name Is Not Alexander - Just How Big Can A Little Boy Dream? and My Name Is Not Isabella - Just How Big Can A Little Girl Dream?

Both stories center around the main character imagining themselves to be a variety of great leaders! Those leaders are featured with brief biographies in the back of both books. The books has a great final message that each character, Alexander and Isabella, should find the hero within. Perfect for my second graders!

A few examples of the great leaders imagined by Isabella -

Sally Ride

Rosa Parks

Marie Curie

After reading the books, I posed a question for my students. What great leader would you like to imagine yourself to be?  We brainstormed a variety of answers and then I sent them to continue looking for the answer using the newly redesigned Kids Infobits website!  

The Kids InfoBits site was perfect for my 2nd graders!  Their "People" section focused on a variety of categories of great leaders.

Students were able to browse through leaders in a variety of arenas.  Most of the great leaders on InfoBits website had a choice of multiple articles, each written at a variety of reading levels so students could find an article that was easier for them to read.  If the article was still a reach, there was a button for students to listen to the article being read. My only disappointment was that the voice of the reader was a bit automated, but it still helped students who needed help, so I was grateful for the assistance. 

Students browsed through the available great leaders, selected one that they admired and began to jot down a few notes on their accomplishments. A few students really struggled with their choice, so I pitched in and helped make suggestions. Together we were able to find someone they admired! 

Once our research is complete, I plan to ask students to respond to the question using Flipgrid!  I look forward to sharing their responses in a future blog post!