Saturday, 22 February 2014

Logos and Radio Plays

This week we worked on Logos, Charades, and a Radio Play!


The ASPIRE class as well as the Penticton grade 5 classes learned about good logo design and then got to try their hand at designing a logo for the Creation Station or their own radio show!  Prior to our logo activity some of the students had already been working on logos.  It was interesting to see how they reworked their designs after our activity taking into account the principles of good design.  I'll describe the logo activity in more detail next week after the other classes have completed it.


The AIM class as well as the Penticton grade 3/4 classes participated in the Charades activity which I described last week.  There are a few students who have an amazing ability to guess the right answer almost every time and many more who do an excellent job of communicating their clues non-verbally!

Radio Play

The Penticton grade 1/2 class knocked my socks off with their reading of the story 'Chicken Little'.  We did it as a radio play with each student reading the part of a character or the narrator.  Once the recording has been edited I'll post the link here.  There are many versions of Chicken Little; here is a link to the script that we used.

Audio Thank You Card

This week we sent off our audio thank you card to Chris Walker.  Chris visited the Penticton grade 3 - 5 classes in January (you can read about it here).  Here is a link to the card (  The choral parts were spoken by the Tuesday grade 3/4 class and the Thursday grade 5 class.  The individual comments were made by students from the Wednesday grade 5 class.  We received the following in response:

Thanks for taking the time to read about a few of the things that we did... This Week In Gifted!

Saturday, 15 February 2014

February 11th to 13th

Here are a few of the things that we did... This Week In Gifted!

Radio Shows

Students in ASPIRE and in the Penticton grade 3 - 5 class continued to work on their radio shows.  Some of the older students have finished their first shows.  Those that have are deciding what to do next.  Here are some of their options:
  • create a new show
  • record a station ID
  • create radio advertisements
  • create a logo (either for The Creation Station or for their own show)
  • create a poster (either for The Creation Station or for their own show)

Non-Verbal Communication

In all of the classes we continue to explore the ways that we communicate non-verbally.  The ASPIRE class and the Penticton grade 5 classes watched a short Monty Python clip involving charades in the courtroom.  It was funny and a great introduction to playing Charades!

The Penticton grade 1/2 class continued to work on Bitstrips, a comic strip creator.  This week they were given the following comic strip and asked to pose or replace the neutral faced character in each panel with a character showing the appropriate expression.

Template Comic
Here is a completed comic by Jayda:
Jayda's comic
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, 10 February 2014

And The Winner Is...

Here are some of the things we did... This Week In Gifted!


For the past few weeks we've been brainstorming names for the radio show which will contain all of the mini radio shows the students have been or will be working on.  Each class put forward their top two names.  This week it was time to vote!  Here are the names that made it onto the ballot:

  • Cfeffial Radio
  • Chatterbox
  • Communication Army
  • Container of Pickled Doves
  • Crazy Communication
  • Drive 2 the Town of Secrets
  • Ducks in a Bucket
  • Gifted Kids On Air (GKOA)
  • I do not know what to call this
  • It's Called... Communication!
  • Niobium Radio
  • Radio Times
  • Sky Fi
  • The banana toaster bo meatloaf dryer Philly bob match stick broom duster pocket money grandpa whopper hobbler hobbler hobbler ehhhht quack show 
  • The Cool Kids Radio Show
  • The Creation Station
Because there were sixteen names to choose from, instead of just voting for their top choice, students were asked to rank their top eight choices.  This is an example of Instant Runoff Voting.  In the first round of counting, everyone's first choice was tallied.  The names that were in first to eighth place after the first round of voting were kept and the rest of the names were eliminated.  In the second round of counting I then looked at the ballots that chose an eliminated name as their first choice and assigned their vote to their second choice (if that choice was already eliminated then I went to their next choice, and so on.)  After the second round of voting, the last place names (there were three names tied for last place) were eliminated and their votes assigned as above.  This process continued until there was one name that had more than 50% of the votes.

Every student in the gifted program was able to vote (100% voter turnout, not bad!)  It took seven rounds of counting to come up with a winning name.  Gifted Kids on Air (GKOA), The banana... quack show, and The Creation Station were the top three names right from round one of counting.

And the Winner Is...

The Creation Station came out on top, but it was a very close race!  Now that we have a name we can start working on, logos, posters, station ids and more.  

Communicating Emotions

This week the Penticton grade 1/2 class looked at the different ways that we communicate that we are happy, sad, excited etc.  We discussed body posture and facial expressions.  We then went on to Bitstrips to create characters showing different emotions.  Students are learning how to pose their characters and change their facial features to match different emotions.  

This and That

The AIM, ASPIRE and Penticton grade 3 - 4 students all spent time on Audacity recording their mini shows, some classes also did the storytelling exercise 5 Card Photo Stories.

The Wrap Up

Thanks for checking out TWIG.  I hope you'll check in again next week.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Flags, Improv Bingo, and Brainstorming Online

Here are some of the things we did... This Week In Gifted!

Explaining Our Flag Designs

Last week the Penticton grade 1 / 2 class presented their flags to their peers.  They created their flags to represent real or imagined places.  Below is a video (link) with photos of the flags and the voices of the students as they explained their choice of colours and symbols in their designs.  Two students were absent and so their flags have no explanations yet.

Improv Bingo

The Summerland ASPIRE and AIM classes as well as the Penticton grade 5s played Improv Bingo.  In this fun drama activity students are given a character, goal, obstacle, place and object.  They then have a limited amount of time to create a short skit involving each of the elements, which are usually pretty wacky.  This week students worked in groups of 2, 3 or 4.  Successful groups had members who were very open to ideas, were inclusive and were also willing to compromise.  Prior to creating our skits we talked about the challenges of this type of activity and strategies for success.  The students came up with creative and very humorous skits.  It is amazing how the same starting elements can result in such vastly different skits!

Brainstorming Radio Show Names Online

This week it was the Penticton grade 3 / 4 groups whose turn it was to brainstorm a name for the radio show which will contain all of the mini radio shows that students are creating.  One of the grade 4s has been asking for a chance to use padlet again, and this seemed like a good opportunity to give it another whirl.  Padlet is a site we tried last year that allows you to post notes on a virtual wall.  I created multiple 'walls' and assigned 2 - 4 students per wall.  They did a wonderful job of brainstorming!  The neat thing about padlet is that everyone on the same 'wall' can add their ideas at the same time and also see the ideas of the other group members.  It is much more democratic and participatory than the traditional group brainstorm where one person in the group controls the paper and pen, and often only the louder/more dominant people in the group are heard.

Once students had brainstormed a list of names, they each submitted their favourite name for the class to vote on.  The top two names from each class will be put forward for all students to vote on.  Here is the link to the list the Tuesday morning class generated and voted upon.  The final vote for all students happens next week!

The Wrap Up

Thanks for checking in and seeing some of the things we did this week.  If you have a child in the program they can hopefully add to what is highlighted here and fill you in on some of the things I didn't mention.