Monthly Archives: November 2009

Class of the Week: James Protheroe’s Grade 6s – from Wales!

This week, meet a fantastic comic-making class from Wales!

Teacher James Protheroe says this of his prolific Grade 6 class:

The children love using Bitstrips and have used it for school work and for their own amusement.
They have used it for Maths, Welsh, Literacy, Science etc.
It has impacted on my class and my teaching because the fun element has really captured children’s imaginations and enabled them to learn more.  I have also found it a really useful tool for my reluctant readers.
Here are some great comics his students have made so far:

Class of the Week: Lorraine Smith’s Grade 8s!

Each week one classroom among the thousands using Bitstrips for Schools is chosen as our Class of the Week!

First to earn the title is Lorraine Smith’s Grade 8 class of Ecole Gron Morgan Public School in Thunder Bay. Congratulations!

Mlle Smith’s students have been making fantastic strips in English and in French, for schoolwork and for fun.  Here’s are some of her thoughts on Bitstrips for Schools, plus a sampling of the stellar work her students have produced.

Q. Tell us about your students’ reaction to Bitstrips for Schools.

A. They love Bitstrips! They work on assignments and then create their own strips at home as well. Some are doing sequels to their comics. They are also sharing what they do at home. At Grade 8, many things don’t get shared, so this is great!

Q. Your students have made tons of Bitstrips! What kind of stuff have they been about?

A.

  • Their favourite scenes from a French novel
  • An activity for their independent reading projects- either a summary, character sketch or favourite scene.
  • Family portrait, to get used to making the characters and seeing what was available in the library.

Q. Did you learn anything new about your students through their comics?

I have learned a lot about the students including their sense of humour, choice of reading materials, computer ability and interest. The family portraits let me see some family dynamics, without asking. I could see their comfort level with technology as well.

Q.How has Bitstrips for Schools helped you teach?

Using Bitstrips has allowed me to have students engaged in a writing activity, using the comics, but not having to worry about what theirs look like, as all look professional when done.

Reluctant writers are doing really well. They focus on the Bitstrip rather than the writing.  As I am getting more comfortable with Bitstrips, I find more ways to integrate it into my curriculum.  I really like the feature of assigning activities. I can easily check the progress of students, when they last logged in and anything they may have deleted. This is a good feature as the students know I can access anything.  I have used the comments section for activities, to send private messages to the students to encourage or make suggestions. I have also used this section to evaluate. I can log in at home and privately send their marks. I don’t need to drag home the marking.

Q. What advice do you have for other teachers on getting the most out of Bitstrips for Schools?

A. Don’t worry about setting up a class. The instructions are easy to follow and then use the site for tracking and monitoring.

Selected Strips (captions by Mlle. Smith):

From a book report by Lauren, to show her favourite part of the book.  It’s unedited by me!

COTW-STRIP 6

These family portraits show how details can be added to take the work to a different level.

COTW-STRIP 1

COTW-STRIP 2

COTW-STRIP 3

Art Update: Headwear, Shapes and Scenes

This weekend we updated the site with several new scenes, a new headwear and a new basic object in the comic builder.

For characters, a hijab and turban have been added to the headwear category. To access them, you’ll need to go to the Advanced Builder – here’s a short video that shows you how:

In the comic builder, we’ve added new scenes including a detailed classroom, hallway and the outside of a school.

New Scenes

Also in the comic builder, we have a new type of object, Shapes. Each shape has various states allowing a huge number of options when you’re making your comics.

New shapes options