Integrated Projects

7th Grade Book Talks-Voicethread

Gene Luen Yang

Live chat with author, Gene Luen Yan
Date: Wednesday, November 7th from 2:30-3:15 CST
Host School: University School of Milwaukee
Host Teacher/Class: Laurie Barth, Middle School English Teacher and her 8th Grade English Students

Participating Schools (fill in chart below if you'd like to join us):
Number of Students/Teachers
Skype Name(s)
University School of Milwaukee
Matt Montagne
Packer Collegiate Institute
Imani Romney-Rosa
St. John's School
Maribel Castro

Communication Tools/Details:
We are still in the process of working this out with the author's publisher. Most likely the talk will be voice/video and text chat using skype, but we certainly are open to other avenues. No matter what tools we use, we will initiate the conversation 60 minutes prior to the start in order for participants to work out any bugs.

Again, we're still working this out. We anticipate that the chat will start with a 10 minute intro/talk by the author, with the balance of the time being spent on a voice Q/A. Text chatting is encouraged throughout.

Have students prepare a few questions in the event that there is a lull-we obviously would prefer a dynamic and spontaneous discussion, but we know that this is the first time we've done something like this with our students so it may not turn out that way.

Text Chatting:
Obviously we encourage relevant questions and communications in the form of text chatting throughout-consider having your students identify themselves by first name and school after leaving a remark. The author certainly won't be able to handle all questions real time, so we encourage other students to answer if applicable. We will also archive the text chat and there is a possibility the author will be able to respond off-line at a later time

Extending the Conversation:
If students have blogs or some other tool that they'll use to reflect on the conversation and experience, please leave those addresses below. Someone will aggregate those using netvibes and send the link out so students can read the thoughts of others and comment on them.

Digital Fables

-an integrated art/language arts/drama project
Writing Piece:
  • Kids to write a fable (animals that talk, animals that have human attributes, and a moral and lesson)
  • no more than 2 animals...
  • No need to be edited for grammar...we're only looking for a good story that follows the rules of a fable.
  • Writers should give consideration to the artists...don't make it overly complicated for the artists to bring your fable to life.
  • We're basing the artwork on Eric Carle's art...simple animal, simple colors, simple scene,

Notes from our first planning meeting:
Do it in the form of a fable (animals teaching a lesson).
Groups of 2-3
Students will be grouped by art/computer classes (we'll try to group students who are in the same section of each class together).

Introducing Project:
  • Watch an Eric Carle video (sarah will look for this)
  • Try to do this during a first period class so we can present to the
  • entire group
  • Introduce this as illustrating and writing a book
  • Show our example of the finished project

  • 5-10 scenes
  • Storyboard for planning
  • based on a fable
  • create their own original fable
  • create a new ending/twist to an existing fable
  • must be animals only

must write a collaborative script in google docs

finished project will be a digital storybook in the form of a video
posted on the web

Sarah and Matt will create an example of a fable

Middle-end of October:
Let's have our example done (example is done-10-17-2007 - Sarah is now working on the characters).

Schedule a meeting to introduce the project

Aesop's Fables Online: 4 stories,