With a 2nd or 3rd grade buddy, each Kindergarten student will choose a favorite story and determine the (1) setting and (2) important characters. Then each student will (3) retell the story in his/her own words. The partners will draw pictures for and write about each of the three sections of the project. To publish the project, each partner group will create a slideshow using Kid Pix Deluxe 3 and record sound to the slides. Upon completion of the projects, we will host an Author's Night for the students to present their projects to their families and community members.
This project covers many standards of the Kindergarten and 2nd/3rd grades (buddies of Kindergartners). In Kindergarten, we use an author of the month theme to introduce students to a wide variety of literature genres and to develop reading comprehension strategies. In the fall, we study children’s authors Kevin Henkes, Leo Lionni and Jan Brett. In addition, we read a variety of stories from different authors that become our Kindergarten favorites. We want to take this opportunity to work with our buddies to “retell” our favorite stories, and concentrate on several elements that our 2nd and 3rd grade buddies are working on in their classrooms (determining characters, setting, and other story elements). Before we planned this project, we used Kid Pix software to illustrate collaborative class books and create class slideshows. Our goal is to enhance our study of literature by creating our own retelling of stories/books, and use technology to electronically publish our stories (for visual and audio purposes), creating “digital storybooks.”
Each Kindergarten student will be paired with a 2nd/3rd grade buddy by the classroom teachers based on several factors: gender (girl-girl; boy-boy), academic ability level and social skills. Some work will be done separately (i.e. during Kindergarten Writer's Workshop) and some work will be done together (i.e. Kindergarten dictation of story elements to a 2nd/3rd grade buddy). As seen in the timeline, the partners will first read several stories together and then select a favorite story to work with. Kindergarten students will be in charge of drawing all pictures (on paper and in Kid Pix). 2nd/3rd grade buddies will be in charge of writing the text as the Kindergarten student dictates (after Kindergarten students had their own brainstorming time during a Writer's Workshop session). Also, the 2nd/3rd grade buddies will be in charge of prompting further details of pictures and text. Kindergarten students will create the Kid Pix picture slides, and the 2nd/3rd grade buddies will insert the text and put together the slideshows.