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The World of Peter Rabbit

What it is: Beatrix Potter has captured the imaginations of countless children with her classic Peter Rabbit tales.  The World of Peter Rabbit is as enchanting as the stories, bringing Beatrix Potter’s incredible artistry to life.  The whole site is fashioned into a virtual popup book where students can meet the characters, watch videos of the stories, play games, and find fun things to make and do offline.  Students can play a game of find Peter (before Mr. McGregor does!), take part in an Easter egg hunt, collect snowflakes to earn special downloads, help Peter find his way through a maze, and play a vegetable picking game.  Students can read character descriptions of each of Beatrix Potter’s characters and even watch video clips of Peter Rabbit.  Students can also create their very own interactive Peter Rabbit puppet show.  They can star in the puppet show by uploading a picture of themselves or a favorite pet.   How to integrate The World of Peter Rabbit into the classroom: I can’t remember the last time I was so utterly captivated by a website.  The site is absolutely beautiful and true to Beatrix Potter’s classic characters.  If Beatrix was still alive, I imagine this is the site she, herself, would have built.  Introduce your students to the classic Peter Rabbit tales with this site.  My students fell in love with the characters and were eager to hunt down the books in our library.  Invite your students to star in their own puppet show, each show will be unique as students make decisions about what will happen to their characters.  Allow students to view each other’s puppet shows.  After reading through character descriptions, students can write their own Peter Rabbit tale, staying true to the character traits they read about on the site. Tips: Students can learn more about Beatrix Potter by visiting “The World of Beatrix Potter“, they can even explore her home in the Lake District with an interactive map.  Beatrix Potter would make an excellent subject for an author’s study. Please leave a comment and share how you are using The World of Peter Rabbit in your classroom.

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Day of Play: Mechanical Bulls, Time Machines, Dancing and Mustaches

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Anastasis Academy, Apply, Create, education reform, inspiration, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary | Posted on 08-10-2012

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Maybe you have heard of Caine’s Arcade?  It is a little movement, started by an 8 year old.  This video will restore your faith in humanity and inspire you big time!  It inspired us at Anastasis Academy, so much so that when the second video came out, inviting us to a Day of Play, we were all in.

On Friday, Anastasis held our own Day of Play.  We collected boxes (lots and lots of boxes), tape, markers, pipe cleaners, glue, aluminum foil, rubber bands, tubes, scissors and paper.  Then, we let the kids at it.  There were no parameters, no specific rules or directions.  The goal for our students was to dream as big as they could. It is amazing what happens when you invite kids to dream and build apart from any rules or expectations of what the end goal is.  Our students (k-8) gathered in our big “all in” room and built to their hearts content.  The amazing part: no two ideas were the same.  We had plink-o, a fortune teller, a minecraft adventure, a time machine (complete with crystal), ski ball, tilt the ball, an old-school computer made of new parts, a hotdog/snow cone stand, dance dance revolution, ferris wheel, tanks, and a mechanical bull.  You read correctly, a mechanical bull.

The students spent about 3 hours dreaming and building.  Some had plans they created the day before, others came in with a blank slate.  After all of the building (and a break for lunch) we gathered to play each others games.  It was SO much fun!  Students even created their own prizes that could be won (mustaches and uni-brows anyone?).

The casual observer might have watched this all go down and seen chaos or a waste of time.  A closer look would have revealed the rich learning taking place.  The problem solving, critical thinking, discovery, planning, rich conversations, kids working together, designing, creativity.  Have you ever seen those words describe a worksheet? A lecture?  This was such a RICH learning experience in so many ways.  Best of all: it built and fostered a culture of working together, learning from each other and enjoying each other.  That is no small feat.

I saw genius today. I am SO proud of these kids, they truly are geniuses.  Two of our students (different classes and ages) built a tank together.  The tank shot rubber bands and launched a “cannon” water bottle.  These boys decided that the rubber band shooter and cannon should have a “safety” just in case something slipped so that they wouldn’t accidentally shoot anything.  The way they worked this out was truly brilliant.  The cannon water bottle was held in place by a popsicle stick safety.  The rubber band shooter was attached to pipe cleaner that kept the rubber band from releasing unless the safety was off.

Our youngest kids built and manned a hotdog/snow cone stand.  My favorite part of the stand was the signs that they created for it.  One of the signs read “Snow cones choose a color: limeade, raspberry, blueberry, grape.”  I love that it said choose a color, not choose a flavor.  SO stinking cute!

A dance-loving student created the cardboard version of dance, dance revolution.  She created a dance mat with different colors on it.  Then, she climbed behind her box and flashed construction paper colors. When the color showed up, the player had to step on the matching color on the mat.  Periodically, she would hold up signs that said things like, “you are on fire” or “fail”.  Brilliant!

Check out our Day of Play below:

Personalized learning should be available to EVERY child, every day. The Learning Genome Project makes that possible.  Please help me spread the word and contribute!

Comments (1)

[…] to create iPad styluses out of sponge and wire for less than 10 cents.  Last year we held an all-school day of play (highly recommend that!) and marshmallow/spaghetti tower challenge.  This year we have some fun […]

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