This article was written by Lisa Kasko, a 7th Grade Language Arts Teacher from Pinckneyville Middle School.
Sherrie Disco, Pinckneyville Middle School’s Local School Technology Coordinator, popped into my room and said, “Kasko, you just have to try Adobe Spark Video. I just learned about it and think you could rock it!” and left a post-it note on my desk with the website and log instructions on it.
We had recently talked about using student-brought devices (BYOD) to supplement the one laptop cart we had available to focus on collaborative learning via technology. Intrigued by how Adobe Spark could help us, we decided to have students use either the free Adobe Spark app they could download to their devices or the website itself.
Adobe Spark Video lets you share your learning or growth in a really slick, professional way. Our plan was to have students cite textual evidence of a literary device in action, record themselves reading the quotation from the text, and analyze the author’s purpose of using that literary device. Differentiation is endless with Adobe Spark Video: students can start with templates like show and tell, promote an idea, or tell what happened, or they can start from scratch.
My favorite component is hearing them record what they have to say in their own voice. Using touch recording, they easily capture their voices and use their voice style to connect with their audience in their own unique way. Then they bring the project to life by finding the perfect imagery: icons, images–they can even upload their own photos–to match their story’s mood and message to help create the theme of their project. To top it off, they select the perfect soundtrack that enhances their presentation. The BYOD option allows them to use music they already have stored in their devices and make even more of a personal connection.
They don’ t know this yet, but these Spark Videos are going to be the “sparks” for their next writing piece. Their prewriting phase is done: they already have cited facts accompanied by recordings of their own voices arguing their support and analysis. But, their prewriting doesn’t stop there–they have visualized the author’s purpose of their piece with the imagery they selected and topped off the mood of their argument with music. I’m pretty excited to see how this impacts their writing!