Lesson Plan

Irish Folk Song Word Clouds

Techology ELA skills taught using digital art with an Irish theme
Jenny O.
Classroom teacher
A.D. Henderson University School
Boca Raton, United States
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My Grades K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Students will be able to, with some guidance and support from adults, use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing.

Students will be able to interact and collaborate with others.

Students will be able to demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills.

English Language Arts
Social Studies
Grades 4 – 5
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hook

Activity: Broadcasting

I have a friend who is an Irish musician. I began by showing my students a video of a private performance he did last summer. We talked about the style of music and how is relates to other types of music. My students were motivated to learn more.

2 Direct Instruction

I reviewed with the students our previous lessons on internet searches. I modeled the search for lyrics to an Irish folk song.

I shared this online tutorial for Tagxedo.

I showed my students a sample word cloud I created and printed. Next, I introduced my students to keyboard shortcuts for cut and paste. Then, I modeled the process of using the Tagxedo website for my students on the SMARTboard.

3 Guided Practice

After viewing the tutorial, students worked together on the computers to practice using the website. The teacher curculated around the room to check for understanding as students work. It was easy to see that students who had not changed the shape of their word cloud needed assistance. Students were able to work together or to ask the teacher for assistance.

4 Independent Practice

Google Drive
Free, Paid

Working in pairs, students used a Google Drive spreadsheet to sign up on a list of Irish folk songs. Students were responsible for creating a word cloud to match the song that they signed up for using Google Drive. Students were unable to create the cloud without knowledge of the keyboard shortcuts. Completed word clouds were reviewed with the teacher. Students were asked to explain why they chose the design/colors/etc to match the song before printing the finished product.

5 Wrap-Up

Free, Free to try, Paid

As an extension activity, students posted their finished word clouds on our class Padlet gallery. The collaborative board is a way for students to share their best work with those outside our classroom.