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Monday, November 14, 2016

Screen Time in First Grade

Perhaps you have been wondering about how much screen time we have in first grade. There are no policies around this but I have given this some thought. I thought I would share my thoughts with you today.

On a normal day, each child will have about 20 minutes of screen time. This would be during our Exploration Stations time. There are a wide variety of things that students might be doing on a screen at this time including: creating ShowMes about things they are learning, writing blog posts, reading online books, completing online lessons at their individual level on i-Ready in reading or math, using learning apps in a variety of content areas like coding/computer programing, math, reading, word work, research, handwriting and more.

Then once a week each child will have a second 20 minute time to complete i-Ready reading lessons. This means that each child has 20 minutes of screen time each day and another 20 minute session once a week.

Then there are times when we do other lessons as a whole crew on our ipads like the day we used Google Earth to find out where China is located in the world and to zoom in and take a look at some cities, towns and villages in China. This lesson led us to wonder about other places in the world that we have been learning about like Australia, Korea, Norway and the United Stated and find them on Google Earth. This is how we began exploring the White House on Google Earth and I know you have heard all about that.

There are now so many high quality sites and apps and uses for technology that we could easily spend all day on a screen learning very useful and worthwhile things. But there are also so many wonderful things that we learn throughout our day without the use of technology, too - we all know how I feel about books and reading, and playing and exploring. So I try to keep a good balance of all of these wonderful things woven throughout our days. The most important thing is that we just keep learning!

Links on this topic that you might find helpful:

New Screen Recommendations for Babies, Kids and Teens Released - short summary of the new recommendations by the American Academy of Pediatrics

Media and Young Minds - full list of recommendations by the American Academy of Pediatrics

Media Use in School-Aged Children and Adolescents - supplemental report by the American Academy of Pediatrics

Resources - page on our crew blog with links to site we use at school

Apps We Use - blog post with photos of the apps we use at school - does not include the most recent additions

Important Dates
11/14 - 11/18 Book Fair
11/16 - 11/17 Student-Led conferences for 1st grade
11/16 Belay Training in the Gym from 9 am to 12 pm
11/17 Cup Stacking Challenge 10:15 - 10:40 for our crew - Students should bring their cups that day
11/17 Thanksgiving Feast - our lunch time will be 10:45 am that day Renaissance Thanksgiving Feast Sign Up
11/23 - 11/25 Thanksgiving Break
12/1 Applications for Discovery Gifted and Talented Program due - please send the teacher pages in for me to complete if you are applying
12/2 Fieldwork to Joyous Chinese Cultural Center 9:30 - 1:00
12/5 Vision and Hearing Screening
12/12 - 12/16 Climbing during PE from 1:15 pm to 2:05 pm
12/16 Fieldwork to Pacific Ocean Asian Market and Kings Land Dim Sum Restaurant 9:30 - 1:00
12/19 - 1/3 Winter Break

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