Voki – Critical Problem Solving

21 Jan

(Created by Jillian, 2nd Grade)

Yesterday, my 2nd grade classes were buzzing with excitement.  Voki.com had entered their world for the first time.  Whether shy or bold, every student was ready to have a voice… and even more eager to share it with the class.

I’ve been a fan of Voki.com for a while and we’ve used it in several different ways at our school over the last year.  When integrating it into the classroom this year, I sought a way to move it from simply being a tool of demonstrating understanding or application and instead use higher order thinking skills to create a product.  I found this by using evaluation questions in the development of the Voki avatar and in the context of a problem solving prompt.  Here’s what we did:

This project is an extension of their Science Unit on innovation and inventions.  Along with a group of 3rd-5th grade gifted students, each of our 2nd grade students has been developing an invention of their own that will be shared in a school-wide Invention Convention this Friday and will be entered in the USF Young Innovators Invention Contest.  Yesterday, Voki avatars became spokespersons for commercials promoting these new inventions.

  1. First, students evaluated their options to chose an avatar and background that matched the context of their invention – Dalmatians promoting inventions that help firefighters, rats telling you NOT to buy a new and improved rat trap, and supermodels telling you why they LOVE their no-slip purses. (NETS-S 4a, 6b)
  2. Next, students wrote their script.  We chose to type in our scripts, which really forced them to focus on their spelling, grammar, and sentence structure… and they did great!  The commercial script needed to give the name of their invention, as well as identify a problem and how their invention solves it. (NETS-S 1a, 1b)
  3. When all done, students saved their Vokis to one class teacher-created account in order to share them with their class, others at school, and on their class website. (NETS-S 2b)

The students had a great time and their products came out great. They left class even more excited about finishing their inventions and sharing their commercials as part of the Convention on Friday.

(Created by Trinidi, 2nd Grade)

Other Student-Created Voki Problem Solving Possibilities?

  • avatars of story characters sharing about the problem/resolution of the plot
  • avatars created partway through a story showing feelings/state of mind of a character at a given point in the story or how the student would solve the problem if they were that character

Have any student samples or ideas  of how students can use Voki.com for critical thinking and creative problem solving? Please, share.  🙂

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