In the mind of a CBE

Creating Connections Between Ancient Civilizations – A CBE Aha! Moment 11.18

Posted by cemignano on

Reflection is an important exercise to encourage professional growth. To become a Certified BrainPOP Educator, we ask candidates to identify a past teaching practice or project, and brainstorm ways BrainPOP could be used to improve it. We’re excited to share this Aha! Moment from Mary Howard, our November CBE of the Month, in the hopes that we can inspire you to grow as an educator, as well.

Tell us your BrainPOP “Aha! Moment” from the certification process. What specific use or application of BrainPOP excited you during this course? How did it change your expectation for using BrainPOP in your teaching practice?

Concept mapping!  For YEARS I’ve wanted to concept map with my students but haven’t found it approachable enough for sixth graders with the tools I had available to me.  BrainPOP has simplified the construct but made it malleable enough so that students can express themselves freely within the construct of a particular movie/concept.  I feel this makes it MUCH better to assess student work and not make students feel overwhelmed. It also makes the movies much less of a ‘sit and get’ experience and much more robust.

What is a specific lesson or unit you’ve taught in the past that you can re-formulate to bring in the new tools, features, or content you discovered through the CBE process?

I’ve always struggled to have students make connections between ancient civilizations and the enduring legacies that civilizations leave behind.  We currently focus on each civilization and talk about what they invented and how it impacted future societies. Students make these connections throughout the year by reflecting and studying for benchmark and summative assessments but never have an opportunity to broadly consider each legacy in comparison to others, and certainly no opportunity to categorize the inventions/discoveries.

How will you integrate BrainPOP’s new features and tools to replace what you’ve done in the past?

Seeing the Sortify activity that makes broader connections between civilizations has me QUITE excited.  I’ll be able to use Sortify to secure existing knowledge of earlier civilizations while aiding students in making connections between civilizations.  The depth of analysis that comes with the Sortify activity is incredible and I can visualize students working cooperatively and engaging in dialogue as they progress through the sort.  Thank you for such a GREAT tool!