Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Let’s Make Our Mark and See Where It Goes for Dot Day 2015!

How do you and your students want to make your mark on the world this school year?  
International Dot Day, which is September 15ish, is the perfect time to make connections with other schools, spark creativity and collaboration, and see where it takes you for the rest of the year. Whether you’ve celebrated Dot Day from its beginnings or you are just getting started, we invite you to get creative with your students and share that creativity with the world.
From the official Dot Day page:

International Dot Day, a global celebration of creativity, courage and collaboration, began when teacher Terry Shay introduced his classroom to Peter H. Reynolds’ book The Dot on September 15, 2009.

The Dot is the story of a caring teacher who dares a doubting student to trust in her own abilities by being brave enough to “make her mark”. What begins with a small dot on a piece of paper becomes a breakthrough in confidence and courage, igniting a journey of self-discovery and sharing, which has gone on to inspire countless children and adults around the globe.”
There’s no “right” way to celebrate Dot Day.  
In fact, every year people around the globe come up with new and creative ways to make dots and connect with others.  That’s the magic of this special day.  
What happens during a Dot Day connection?

Often, we start by reading The Dot by Peter Reynolds or other dot-inspired books such as Press Here by Herve Tullet.  This is done via Skype or Google Hangouts with a connecting class. We begin to connect the dots with one another by learning a bit about one another.  

Sometimes we create something fun together! For example, we connected with our friends in another Iowa school and read the book Same, Same but Different. Then we had our students decorate half of a dot at each school. We sent them in the mail to each other and put them together creating dots of two halves....one from each school. We made Same, Same but Different dots.
You can read all about it this wonderful dot day activity here.
If you need some ideas to get started, consider taking a look at Andy Plemmon's or Matthew Winner’s past lessons .
Check out what others have posted in the Dot Day gallery.
One of my favorite Dot Day celebrations was with my dear friend John Schu. You can watch a short video of our week long celebration and get lots of ideas for your Dot Day too.
Also, check out the Celebridots page for dots created by some of your favorite authors and illustrators..
How to get started...

1.  Register your school on the official Dot Day page.  You’ll be added to the global map as well as gain access to the educator guide which is packed with information

2.  Visit our shared Google Doc to start making connections with other schools.  We plan to make connections during the whole week of September 14-18.  Simply post your schedule, ideas, and contact information. Then, browse the doc for other schedules that match yours.  Skype in the Classroom is also a great place to make connections.
3.  Start collaborating with your connecting schools and get ready to make your mark with your students.
Part of making your mark on the world is getting your students’ voices and creations out into the world.  

As you connect, share your creations on Twitter using #DotDay and #Makeyourmark  Consider creating a blog post to show your students’ work to the world.
Now, make your mark and see where it takes you.

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