Our Name in Pictures

Many I have a word with you?

Pastry Cutter H u Pastry Cutter Z Z A Alphabet Block h

There are many clever tools created by designers that use images.  The tool that made our name in pictures is called Spell With Flickr. It was developed by a 28-year-old programmer from Springfield, New Jersey named Erik Kastner. We will link to his site soon. He created a program that chooses letters from a pool (collection) of pictures on Flickr. We will learn more about the site which allows users to load and share pictures. The pictures are published under Creative Commons licenses. This will be important to you when you start using and sharing images.

H Pastry Cutter U Münster coloured card disc letter z a-spo H

In the mean time, what do you think of these? Which one do your prefer–and why?

I would have included the exclamation mark, but there wasn’t room on our page


Can I Help Someone By Playing a Game?


Take a look at this site called Free Rice. Read “How to Play” on the right-hand side.

The first page of the game tests vocabulary. Notice that you can listen to the word that you are defining. You can also change the subject and play games using multiplication, famous paintings, or world geography.

What do you think?

Is it worth playing a game that donates 20 grains of rice to the United Nations World Food Program for each answer you get right? Post your opinon on the blog!

Facing Yourself: Drawing a Self-Portrait

The Challenge:

Draw a self-portrait. It’s tougher than it sounds!

The Tools:

A hand mirror, pencil, paper, and ruler (to prove to ourselves that our eyes are only half-way up our heads–not closer to the top!)

The Learning:

First, we looked at this video of portraits of women in the last 500 years: do you recognize any faces or artists? Notice that although the styles of portraiture (and what is considered beautiful) change over time, the proportions of the face stay the same.

Then we checked out the lessons on face shapes and facial proportions. THIS IS WORTH REFERRING BACK TO! This little test answers the question What’s Wrong With This Portrait? You can practice portraits–even silly ones–in this drag and drop activity.

The Results?

Wait and see!

The Process:

Division 16, what is it like to draw yourself while looking in the mirror? How did going through the lessons help you? Which facial feature is the most difficult to draw, and why?

We Agree!

Begin with the end in mind.

To start the year off right, we have come up with the agreements we will live and learn by. We looked at a series of Flickr images and then brainstormed possible messages they could represent about positive classroom relationships and a healthy learning environment.

For example, for this peacock image students wrote:

We agree to

– be original and stand out

– accept each other’s beauty

– show pride but not boast

– show our colours

– be ourselves, but not show off

– be colourful and bright, and be the best we can be

– be proud of ourselves for who we are and show our true colours as an individual and in a group

– be the best we can be

All great ideas! These phrases were merged into one statement: “We agree to be our unique selves and accept each other’s beauty.”

The process took time, but look what we achieved:

Our Classroom Agreements

View SlideShare presentation or Upload your own. (tags: agreements students)

(If you can’t see the slides, click here.)

These agreements will be the foundation of respectful relationships and productive learning experiences this year. And I hope it is just the beginning of our work with digital images, technology, and collaboration.

Let us know what you think.

(All image credits on slide 12)

So, Division 16, take another look through our agreements. Which one is especially important to you, and why? What did we miss–is there something you think we should include? What sort of image would best represent your ideas about living and learning together?

Welcome to Our Class Blog

The door is opening on a brand new year.

Please come in!

Our blog is a invitation to see what we are up to in Division 16. Some of our work will be polished, and some will be in draft form. Please remember we are learning: please notice our successes, not our mistakes; please honour our attempts.

We are expecting great things.