Every day I add one of these fun, bright colored bracelets to my collection.
They show up on my desk, get slipped into my hand when walking through the hallway, and are proudly shared and traded in the library throughout the day.
Each one is different. Each one is unique and beautiful. And every single one was created by the hands of little people I care about within our school.
One day, the third graders and I were talking about all of the different kinds. They were all talking at once, showing off their creations, and catching a moment to tell me what they were best at creating.
I told them I wanted to learn.
They asked if we could have a "Rainbow Loom Day". I said, "Sure...that would be super fun! Bring your looms and supplies next week for library."
That night as I planned, I thought about how I could incorporate this day into library and technology time. How could I integrate this into the third graders curriculum? How could I make this time as meaningful as possible? How could we make this have meaning outside of our library and school?
And with that.....I started creating our Rainbow Loom Research Project.
The first day I introduced the third graders to the project by having a conversation about research and sharing a few resources I pulled together about Rainbow Loom.
I put these on the 3rd Grade Symbaloo so they would be easy to share and get to anytime.
The Official Rainbow Loom website was a great place for them to start and we especially loved seeing all of the....
instructional videos that the Rainbow Loom website contains. These then take one to the....
Rainbow Loom YouTube page where one can find these videos and so many more by others around the world.
In Pinterest, there are tons of walls that people have created featuring Rainbow Loom. I shared this one, Rainbow Loom Pinterest Wall, on their Symbaloo.
After I set the stage a bit and got them really excited about everything we could learn, I shared what I had put together so far. We talked about all of the different things they would be using and learning...
Word processing skills; Using technology tools with video and photography; Creating a multimedia presentation; Identifying the importance of search terms; Creating a citation using a digital tool such as EasyBib; and Conducting internet searching using educational search engines
I shared this Google Document, Third Grade Rainbow Loom Research Project, on their Symbaloo too.
You can also get to the Google Doc shown above to change, copy or print off to use.....just make a copy first and save that one as your own.
Since they were going to be working on this project for several weeks and there were questions about bringing the Rainbow Looms to school, we decided a parent note home would be awesome too.
To start brainstorming about what their research project would focus on, I gave each group a yellow sheet with a few questions to get them started. I wanted them to use this to help the beginning conversations and start to focus their interests.
You can find that sheet here to use.
After we got that beginning stuff out of the way, I let the third graders form their groups of two of three. They were very happy when I told them it was time to start.
I was excited too!
Others used the knowledge that they had within their conversations.
I loved seeing one of our secondary students, Luke, come in and talk to them about what he knew too.
As they finished their workshops, each group had a quick conference with me to make sure everyone was on the same page and that they had good driving questions which would focus their research project.
I liked seeing that they had their own devices that they were using too. Hagan had a video up on his iPad that they were using.....Then Luke pulled up the same thing on his iPhone.
That told me that I had to take a step back time, just a little one, and introduce a model that would help all of the students be successful at this part of the project. It would be a model that they will be able to use forever as learners.
The next time they come to the library, we will try out this new model and see what happens.
He started organizing everything, making it easy to create Rainbow Loom bracelets.
He was hooked! Hagan now wanted to create all of the different bracelets and designs of Rainbow Loom.
I love what he has been creating at home, now I cannot wait to see what he creates in the library!
I just know it will be terrific....Just like all of the other 3rd grade researchers too.
They are definitely going to show us how Rainbow Loom fits into the library and school.