Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Fun With Original Photos :: Student Blogging Challenge

Images can bring a blog post to life and draw in a reader. As a blogger, it is important to use images correctly. Do NOT just search Google Images and take what you want! Learn how to use images correctly! 

For the Student Blogging Challenge, we are having Fun With PhotosHere are some image options on a poster from Mrs. Morris.

This week's focus will be creating original images that complement a blog post. Of the tasks below, our class will be creating images that tell a story. Students will use their own original photos in a post on their blog.

How Does It Feel When Your Work is Stolen? 

To help students understand the concept of "intellectual property theft" (also know as taking someone else's work) I played a trick on my students. I put up their original artwork but put someone else's name on each piece. 

When the students saw what I was doing, they told me that their artwork had the wrong name. I told them, "It doesn't matter. I need to get this bulletin board finished before recess." 

Later in the day, I confessed that I posted the incorrect names on purpose. What followed was a wonderful conversation about the importance of getting credit for work produced. Also, we talked about how awful it feels to take credit for a classmate's work. One of my student bloggers wrote a wonderful post about the experience

Here is a video of the trick from a few years ago! 

How to Create an Image That Tells a Story 

A great image on a blog post can really help "tell a story". For example, the picture we created to complement the artwork trick is below.  

I directed the students to put their arms in a gesture of confusion. Not showing the faces was a purposeful part of the digital creation. Always limit personal information!

We looked at a few great samples of photos from the Yollis 365 Blog that tell a story.

1. Here is a photo that tells the story of a mischievous dog named Buck who came to school to "help" clean up. 

2. This photo is about a dog named Buck who is not interested in a Santa costume! 

3. This photo tells the story of a student who is learning cursive. 

Some New Student Photos!

Students have been taking photos using an Acer, an ipad, or a smart phone and using the photos to write blog posts for the Student Blogging Challenge. 


Big Burt tells the story of his family's new kitchen backsplash. Notice that his dad is putting them in place. This photo helps tells the story of the backsplash. 

"Casey Cherry's" picture tells the story of the London Eye
Here is a view for you!

Photo by Casey Cherry 

"Jodie Bloom" included a photo that tells the story the Eiffel Tower. 

Here is a photo by "Dr. Hagle". It shows a close up of a painted lady butterfly. 

My student bloggers, here is a link for you to share your URL for your new post with your original photo. Be sure you have the right URL! Fun With Photos Google Form

What do you think of the original photos?

How does creating your own images make your blog post special? 

Monday, March 11, 2019

How to Write a Quality Comment!

Comments bring a blog to life. Let's write quality comments!

Mrs. Yollis' class is participating in the International Student Blogging Challenge!

The focus of week 2 is composing QUALITY comments!

Parts of a Blog

Blogging has many parts: the post, the comments, and the sidebar. If you do a good job with all of the parts, your blog will be more interesting. Today we will focus on quality comments! The comment section is where the blog comes to life and a learning community is built. 

Content is key!

In our class, we evaluate our blog comments. A one-point comment is a general comment that doesn't add very much to the post.   Example: I like your blog. Please visit mine! 

two-point comment adds something to the comment conversation. A commenter might compliment the writer in a specific way or add new information. Another idea is to make a connection. Maybe the post reminds you of an experience that you've had. Share that connection!  Try to end your comment with a relevant question. That way, an interesting conversation can develop.

What should I say in my comment?

Here is a video made by Mrs. Yollis' students called How to Compose a Quality Comment!  It offers FIVE tips to help you take your comments to the next level!

We like to open our comments with a greeting and end with a closing. We choose to do this as it makes it easier for us to follow the conversation within a comment section.

How do you get comments typed and published?

-For Advanced Bloggers-

Some bloggers like to use HTML code to make their comments better.  Learning to write HTML code, or HTML tags, is a somewhat simple way to take your comment to the next level.

HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) is a language.

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To write HTML code, use the following symbols:

Important: Do not add a space between the HTML tag and the word or sentence.


1.  To put text in italics, place this HTML code around the text:



The sentence will look like this when published:

Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing.


2.  To make text bold, place this HTML code around the text:


The sentence will look like this when published:  

Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing.



3.  To make a hyperlink, it gets a little tricky.

Use the following HTML code around the URL and add your own link word/words:

  [The URL is the address of the web page. It starts with http://www…]

The HTML code below:

Will become this hyperlink when published:

                                                                 Mrs. Yollis’ Website

Sometimes it is hard to remember the HTML codes. I keep an HTML word document on my desktop with all the common codes, especially the one to create a hyperlink. Here is a video demonstrating how easy it is to create a hyperlink if you have the code set up in a Word doc.

If you like to add fun are those codes!

My class, DO NOT sign into anything. Instead, choose NAME/URL


What did you learn about quality commenting? 

 Why is it important to proofread a comment before pressing publish? 

How many comments will you publish this week?

Student Blogging Challenge Week 2 Google Form

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Student Blogging Challenge Begins!

Edublog's Student Blogging Challenge begins this week, 
and my student bloggers are very excited! Visit the student blogs via our sidebar. 

It is exciting to be connecting with students all over the world! Look at this list of continents and countries. 
  • What continent is missing and why? 
  • Which countries will you connect with and why? 

Here are the tasks for Week 1:

We got right to work. 
First, we created avatars using the site choices below: 

Peanutize Me

PowerPuff Yourself


Next students completed their Avatar Post and/or their About Me Page. Finally, bloggers added the appropriate URL to this Google Form. Soon, we will have comments and the connections will begin!

Thank you to @kathleen_morris  and @tasteach  and Edublogs for the fun challenges!  

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What has been the best part of blogging so far?

What questions do you have?

Thursday, January 10, 2019

What are Text Features?

Mrs. Yollis' class is learning about informational text

Informational text, or nonfiction writing, is based on facts, real events, and real people. There are many helpful text features found in nonfiction writing. Some common text features are:  headings, subheadings, captions, diagrams, time lines, maps, charts, table of contents, index, and the glossary.

Below is a humdinger of a video made by Sheriff Yollis and Sheriff Salsich. They hope their video helps you greenhorns learn about these important reading features!


Here it is on Vimeo if YouTube is blocked.

The Nonfiction Trail from Jonah Salsich on Vimeo.

In class, we used published informational texts as mentor texts.

Here are some headingsphotos, and captions.

Photo by Mrs. Yollis

Look closely. Here is a heading, a subheading, a map, a photo, and a caption

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

Here is a map with a key. I wonder what the red means? Check the key and it will unlock the meaning. 

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

Wow! Text features are everywhere and you can sure learn a lot if you pay attention to them.

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

What are your favorite text features and why?

(Headings, subheadings, captions, diagrams, time lines, maps, charts, table of contents, index, and the glossary.)

What are TWO facts that you learned from a mentor text explored in class? Be sure to tell us the text feature you used to learn the factual information! 

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Family Blogging Month Winners!

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Congratulations Family Blogging Month Winners!

Photo by Mrs. Yollis
Each blogger received a free kid's meal to a local restaurant, a fabulous crown to wear, and a free choice post on Mrs. Yollis' Classroom Blog!

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Mrs. Yollis created the idea of Family Blogging Month back on April 1, 2010. The participation, the quality of the commenting, the interaction and learning that transpired via this classroom blog makes Mrs. Yollis beam with pride.

Not only are her students and their family members becoming superior writers, but they are also honing important digital skills like how to communicate and contribute online, how to limit personal information on the Internet, and how to develop a dynamic digital footprint. (To hone is a fancy verb that means to improve over time.)

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Mrs. Yollis would like to personally thank all the parents and family members for their constant support. Your participation is the key to your child's educational success!

What did you think of Family Blogging Month?

Who commented from your family?

Where did your family comment from? 

♕      ♕     ♕

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Throw Back Thursday! Gingerbread From 2016

Repost from former students 2016. It's that good!
Gingerbread Mission

By Nolan and Elie

Photo by Mrs. Yollis 

One day, Elie was at Nolan’s house when they saw the mailman. “I’ll get the mail,” announced Nolan.

Strolling to the box, he popped open the lid and saw a flyer for something. The flyer read: “Come to the Gingerbread baking competition! It will be a blast! It is at Marcus Hall on Peach Street at 2:00 P.M. It is on Sunday, June 18th.”

It was Saturday, June 17th. There was no time to waste. Nolan rushed in the house while waving the flyer.

“We should really enter this!” Elie said while reading it. “We are some of the best bakers in town!”

That was true. One time Elie and Nolan entered a cookie baking competition, and the judges were blown away by their creations. They won by using a secret ingredient. The boys were going to use that ingredient for the gingerbread house. They were confident.

“We should start baking right now!” Nolan exclaimed. So, they started planning.

They got a ride to Buck’s Market from Nolan’s mom. At the store, they got the ingredients. Plus Nolan’s mom got some groceries. Back at Nolan’s house, they started baking. Gingerbread and frosting went flying as they baked and baked. Then they put in the secret ingredient. After an hour, Elie said, “I’m tired.”

“Good,” said Nolan. “because we are done!”

“Great! But it will melt if we don’t put it in the refrigerator,” Elie noted.

“Right!” concurred Nolan.

They put the gingerbread house in the refrigerator and they went away. Elie was sleeping over, so they got their sleeping bags unrolled and quickly fell asleep.

The next morning, they were very excited. It was Sunday, June 18th, and it was time to go to the competition. They went to the refrigerator. Then it happened, and they saw it...

Write your own ending in the comment box!
Have fun!

Any of our blogging guests are free to write ending too! Join the fun!

Monday, December 3, 2018

Hour(s) of Code!

This is a post for the Student Blogging Challenge! Let's get coding!

Hour of Code is an annual event to promote Computer Science. According to their website: 

The Hour of Code takes place each year during Computer Science Education Week. The 2018 Computer Science Education Week will be December 3-7, but you can host an Hour of Code all year round. Computer Science Education Week is held annually in recognition of the birthday of computing pioneer Admiral Grace Murray Hopper (December 9, 1906). 
We're starting Hour of Code and changing the name to Hours of Code!

Thank you, Hadi Partovi for creating this project!

Computer Science week coincides with the birthdays of two computer science pioneers. A pioneer is a person who is one of the first to enter a field of study or explore a new area of thought. 

1. Ada Lovelace, born in England on December 10, 1815, is considered the world's first computer programmer.

    Photo Credit

    2.  Grace Hopper, whose birthday is December 9, 1906, was an American computer programmer and Navy rear admiral. She contributed to the development of the COBOL language and is credited with popularizing the term "computer bug" in the programming community. 

    Grace Hopper said, "To me programming is more than an important practical art. It is also a gigantic undertaking in the foundations of knowledge."

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One of the important things about problem-solving is persevering. Sometimes you try an algorithm, or list of steps used to solve a problem,  and it fails, adjust your algorithm. Try again! This strategy is called trial and error

Check out this group below who worked collaboratively to solve a very difficult puzzle. First, they tried to solve it online. The code failed. Next, they tried to write the steps out on paper to look for a loop. That helped, but the code still failed. Finally, Mrs. Yollis gave us a small hint using the solution. That did it. The zombies ate the sunflower!

As a surprise for the class, I booked Mrs. Minnicozzi, our district tech expert, and she taught a robotics class! We applied our Blockly coding to robots!

Mrs. Minnicozzi showed us how to link blocks together on the ipad to make the robots dance.

We worked in small groups to get the bots to boogie.

After the dance competition was over, Mrs. Minnicozzi hit the road with her wagon of bots!

Students, on our Blogger blog, you can use HTML code to level up your comments. Here is some information about HTML code. Here is the HTML code for some fancy shapes. There are many more!

What do you like about coding?

What did you learn about robots from Mrs. Minnicozzi?

What are you creating?