The Wixie help includes tutorials designed to empower students (and teachers) to create to learn.
To access the Wixie tutorials, select the user profile icon in the blue bar and choose Help. At the Help window, select the Tutorials tab and choose a tutorial.
Don't worry if the content of the tutorial doesn't exactly match your curriculum. Use it to give students a quick set of basic skills so they can apply the same steps to build a similar project that meets your learning goals. Here are some ways you can use each tutorial.
Create a Table Tent - All About Me
The Create a Table Tent tutorial is the easiest tutorial designed with the newest and youngest users in mind. In this tutorial, you use the tools to paint a picture of yourself and label it. Then, add another page and use alphabet stickers to write your name and add images that match each letter. To finish, you print the two pages to a single sheet of paper and fold it into a table tent.
In the Primary Classroom
You can use the same paint and label an image skills for a range of primary projects, such as sentence strips for retelling. To give their work a content or skill focus, use sentence starters such as "I like..." or "I go..."
Creating an adaptation of your class's favorite story is another fun way to apply these skills. Simply have each student write and illustrate a page like:
- Sometimes it looked like a _______, but it wasn't a ________ from Charles G. Shaw's It Looked Like Spilt Milk.
- In the tall, tall grass, a __________(noun) ______________(verb) from Denise Fleming's In the Tall, Tall Grass.
The All About Me style of the table tent tutorial is a useful way to start off the school year. Even though it is designed for beginners and young users, it sets strong foundations for digital project work. The best projects don't use technology for technology's sake, but to engage students in the curriculum and deepen their understanding.
These elementary ideas, with corresponding lesson plans on Creative Educator, can be done in two pages using the skills learned in the table tent tutorial.
Animal Riddles - add text to share your riddle on page one and show a visual of the answer on page two. Print and display as a table tent or card challenge.
Visualize Word Problems - have students use text, paint, and stickers to write and illustrate a word problem. Duplicate the page and solve the word problem showing the equation on the second page.
A New President for Rushmore - after studying US presidents, have students choose which one should be the next to be honored on Mt. Rushmore. Have them add their president to the monument on one page and add text to make their argument on the other.
A simple two-page project provides a fun option for middle-school level formative and summative assessments, such as:
Design a Book Cover - after reading a novel or short story, ask students to design a new book jacket for it. Students can use the New button to start a new project in portrait mode or use the search field at the top of their Wixie home page and search for jacket to find templates to get them started.
Design a New Dollar Coin - coins often commemorate an important individual or event. Have students choose a person they admire from their class, school, community, history, or science and create a new dollar coin to honor that person.
Retell a Story and Severe Weather Safety - Fiction and Informational Text
In the Retell a Story tutorial, you create multiple pages to retell Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are, while learning to use the tools, add text, add images, and record narration. The Severe Weather Safety tutorial teaches similar features.
If students can complete the steps in these tutorials, they are pretty much ready to apply Wixie to inform, present, persuade, and share ideas and information in a range of curriculum projects.
To keep with the theme of retelling, have students create a comic to summarize a story. The limited amount of space in a comic’s panels supports this process by forcing students to choose a small amount of text to share the most "significant points in a text or story."
After creating a page for each panel in their comic, students go to the File menu, choose Print, and select an option based on how many pages they want to print on a single sheet of paper.
Comics are also a great way for students to showcase understanding about scientific cycles such as butterfly metamorphosis, the rock cycle, or the nitrogen cycle.
Interviewing an animal is a fun way to share and showcase knowledge and incorporates the voice recording that gets lost when printing comics.
Students want to do real work and Wixie makes it easy to present and share their work with a wide audience. Tap into the energy and idealism of your middle school learners by asking them to apply argument and persuasive techniques to inform the public and change minds! Creative Educator has lesson plans that provide ideas for crafting argument presentations:
Skip the Tutorials? Simply jump in and create!
While it may be harder to get a few of your students started creating and exploring on their own, most will jump right in. Many of your learners are digital natives and more than willing to click every option to see how it works. Simply share an idea or two to provide inspiration, but to jump start their creativity and communication, it often works to let them start a blank project and simply play.