Thursday, April 7, 2022

Bringing Together "Made By Maxine", Ruth Spiro, Ozobots & Unique Parade Routes For A Special New Makerspace Challenge With Our Kindergarteners!


I love doing projects that tie literacy and technology together. They are so much fun, meaningful and impactful for our students. 

When my friend and colleague, Melanie Smith, reached out to me about Ruth Spiro's book, Made By Maxine,  I couldn't wait to get together and hear her ideas. 

Melanie had read it to her kindergarteners and wanted to do an activity...
....from the Made by Maxine Activity Guide from Ruth's amazing website. You can find the activity guide here
On the Makerspace Challenges page, 
Melanie thought it would be fun to do the Parade Route activity where the kids design a parade route for the pets and program a bot to follow the route. 
Our Ozobots would be perfect for this project as the kids could code the route with a marker for the robot to follow.  
Since they were learning about maps and the key on maps, we also thought it would be fun to include that on a big piece of paper for them to draw their parade routes.  We created it in a Google Slide and switched the... 
...Page Setup to 17 x 11 inches. This would allow us to print it on 11 x 17 inch paper on our school printer.  

You will find the Parade Route here where you can make a copy to use. 
On the Map Key, we made connections to Made by Maxine including things like a School, House, Pet Store, Veterinarian, Playground and more. 
We even included a little Made by Maxine book cover in the corner so they could think about the story as they created their parade route. We added a place for the Parade Route Creators too. 
To make the project even more special, we kicked it off by connecting with our friend and author, Ruth. 
She shared her newest Maxine book, Maxine and the Greatest Garden, illustrated again by Holly Hatam

Ruth also talked about gardening and plants, so the kids had lots of great questions for her about gardens, plants, books and writing.  They loved it! 
Later in the day, I went back to Melanie's classroom for the activity with her kindergarteners. We talked about the project; the map key and how it tied into Made by Maxine, and how to code their Ozobot by drawing their parade route. 
They worked with their elbow partner and....
...did such an awesome job....
...working together... create the best parade routes. 
When the parade route was drawn and traced with a black marker, they went back to fill out the Map Key...
...and fill in the details on their maps. 
We loved watching them add the sweetest details and take their....
...time working through... together to make them unique and special. 
By the end of our time together (45 minutes), their maps were complete and ready for the next day with the Ozobots. 
Today, on the second day, our Evo Classroom Kit was ready to go.....
... and so were the kids! 
First, they had the Ozobots run on the parade route they created. 
Then they took turns traveling around the classroom to check out their friends routes too. 

This project is one we will remember for next year.  It was such great fun and one they won't forget. 
You can find Ruth Spiro's website here. It is filled with lots more ideas, books and fun. 

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