This is one of my favorite culminating activities that we do in firth grade, creating digital superheros in Pixie. Fifth graders have been learning about Digital Citizenship since they started Technology Class with me in Kindergarten. We have discussed topics that range from navigating websites with ads to dealing with cyberbullies over the past 5 1/2 years. And now I ask them to take all of that learning, choose one specific topic and create a comic strip about it. We will use a movie format of the final projects as PSAs on our News from the Nest show.
The Learning: I have been using lots of different resources over the years, but Common Sense Media is the one I go to the most and the one our district has utilized to build our Digital Citizenship curriculum. There are great lessons for the classroom and tips to share with families.
The Project: Darren Smith, one of our Technology Teachers in the district, originally started this project. In Pixie, students create a superhero who battles a real digital world problem.
- The first class was an introduction and students began the pre-writing with our graphic organizer. We used the Somebody, Wanted, But, So, Then reading tool in reverse. Students worked through the organizer from a writer’s perspective to organize their writing.
- Our second class together was focused on creating the superhero. Some students used pictures of themselves and stickers to create comical characters. Others used stickers and drawing tools to create a superhero. Many students were able to begin creating pages of their comic strip during this work time.
- The third class was a writing workshop time for students to actually write the comic strip.
- By week four, many students were ready for editing. They used the Spell Check in Pixie and Peer-to-Peer Grammar Check. For Peer-to-Peer Grammar Check, students invite a classmate to read through their entire piece. The classmate is looking for a story that makes sense, capital letters where needed and punctuation.
- Once the details are completed, students will be able to print out their comic strips. They may also choose to record their story and create a movie for a Public Service Announcement for our school.