Elementary Technology Activity Plan: A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words

A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words

Specific Age: 6 year olds (1st graders)

Goal of the Activity: The goal of this activity is to give children the opportunity and support to communicate with their classmates as well as to get to know one another by interviewing a classmate and reporting on what they learned through technology.


          Children will demonstrate their social skills by interviewing their classmates.

          Children will show their language skills by orally recording the information gathered from their classmates.

          Children will show their fine motor skills by handling the camera and taking photos of their classmates.

         Children will demonstrate their creativity by coming up with original questions to ask their classmates.

Rationale for the Activity: This technology activity gives children the opportunity to describe themselves and show their self-concept (DAP, p.266). This activity also provides a time to practice social skills with the help of a teacher (DAP, p.267). These social skills are important in the development of self-esteem and self-concept.

Learning Standards: Georgia Performance Standard ELA1LSV1: The student uses oral and visual strategies to communicate.

            b. Recalls information presented orally

            c. Responds appropriately to orally presented questions

            f. Uses complete sentences when speaking

Amount of Time Needed for Activity:Set-up: 10 minutes; Activity: 1 hour

What you need:

Materials Needed:

         1-2 digital cameras

         computer with internet access and voice recording capabilities

         a snowball microphone that attaches to the computer screen

Space Needed: desk for the computer with a chair for the teacher and two chairs for students; plenty of space for each pair of children to talk quietly

Detailed Procedure

1. Set up the computer by opening up voicethread.com and hooking the microphone up to the computer. Also open the voice recording program.

2. Explain the activity to the class

Today we are going to make a class slideshow on the computer.

The slideshow will have pictures of everyone in the class.

It will also tell a little bit about each person.

3. Put the children in pairs of two and have them interview one another. If there is an uneven number of students, be partners with one student.

Does everyone have a partner? Good!

You are going to interview your partner.

That means you will ask them questions about themselves.

Remember their answers so we can add them to the slideshow.

What kinds of questions do you want to ask your partners?

4. If the students aren’t sure what to ask, prompt them.

Here are some things you can learn about your partner:

Favorite ice cream, family members, pets, favorite toy, favorite thing to do at school, age, eye color, hair color, name

5. Give the class about 20 minutes to talk to each other. Walk around the room and check on each pair’s progress. Help get the conversation started if a pair is struggling.

What have you learned about your partner? What questions did they ask you? Why don’t you ask them what they like to do for fun?

6. Call one pair over to the computer at a time. Have them take a picture of one another. Then record each child telling what they learned about their friend.

This is the microphone. When you speak into it, it records what you say so we can listen to it again later. Do you know what you’re going to say? What did you learn about your friend?

7. After the first pair has recorded their interviews, send them to work on another activity and call another pair over. Continue until the whole class has recorded.

8. Go to voicethread.com and create an account. Then create the class slideshow by uploading the pictures and voice recordings.

9. When it is finished, show the class what they created! Have everyone gather around the computer screen to view the slideshow. Ask the class what they thought about their project.

What did you think about the slideshow? What did you like about it? What will your parents think about the slideshow? Did you learn something new about a friend today?

10. Email a link to the website to your students’ parents so they can learn about the class.

Adaptations and Extensions

If you have a class blog, post the slideshow so that parents and students can watch it as many times as they want.

You can do the project at the beginning of the year and again at the end. You can see how the students’ language and social skills have improved. Students can see how they have grown and how their tastes/preferences have changed.

Instead of making a slideshow, you can make a class book on tikatok.com. You can order a copy of the book for the classroom library.

To incorporate art, the partners can draw a portrait of one another that can be scanned and put into the slideshow.

If your students have pen pals from a class in another state/country, have both classes create a slideshow and email them to each other. Students can talk about how the students and the classes are different and/or similar to one another.

Reference: This activity plan was created by Katie McMichael, CHFD 5130 student, University of Georgia.

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