This is where Mrs Weed has written her ideas and thoughts about how the project is going

Please feel free to use any of the resources/planning I post on here.

19/04/2009
In order to plan for the Myst project I have drawn from many sources which include primarily the http://www.kented.org.uk/myst/ site. Naturally, ideas have been embellished but it gave me a really good starting point.

Other useful things:
www.nicouzouf.com/en/?id=myst3exile for saved game points which will come in very handy.
www.timrylands.com from whom all things Myst are created! If you have not seen Tim in action, you seriously must. He is inspirational and will shed a new light on how you could approach your teaching.
www.gamechronicles.com/guides/myst3/exilewalk.htm for a detailed walk-through of the game....essential if you don't have much time or patience.

I have also invested in a wireless keyboard and mouse (Tim's suggestion) so that I am not stuck at the front of the class by the board - it gives me the freedom to move around and not be the focal point for the children - I want the game to be the focus with the children driving it, not me.

Additionally I have bought the soundtrack to the game so we can play that in the background in the afternoon sessions. I got this quite cheaply for about £6 on eBay.

I have also mixed the class up - the children will be working in mixed-ability groups as I feel this project will lend itself really well to that, with the higher abilities upporting the lower abilities, especially with idea-generating.

Differentiaition will be through outcome here. Not something I usually do but I feel that with the writing, I want all the children to be on an even keel, so to speak. I am convinced that this is the right way to go. We'll see.

I want the children to be able to record any good ideas/ new words for reference so will be giving them these wordbooks:

20/04/2009 - day 1

I will upload the plans at the end of the week.

To write the desert description, the children used this sheet:


It went really well today. I was worried that the children would remember everything they did with Tim Rylands but fortunately, only one child did!! The kids were really open about their descriptions but maybe a little transfixed on the idea that there were dinosaurs everywhere and spent too much time on that. I steered them away and they wrote happily for about 20 minutes and were very keen to read what they had written.

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Discovered Kent blocks wikispaces in school arrrggh! So I have requested they unblock our school May have to fight it but will work round it somehow. The children deserve to update their own page!

In the afternoon we painted watercolour landscapes inspired by Myst and I think we are all pleased with the results. These will serve as back-drops to the poems they will write tomorrow.

21/04/2009 - day 2

We had a great day today - the work produced was, for these children, outstanding. I am so proud of them. What struck me was the enthusiasm with which they put pen to paper, or finger to key-pad.
We used this template:


Very happy to come into school this morning to see that wikispaces has been unblocked for us so the kids spent some of their time uploading their content - first 2 days' work can be seen on the 'desert' pages.

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22/04/09 - Day 3

We finally came out of the desert and walked towards the door today. We wrote some lovely descriptions of the door and this afternoon we made door-frames for our work. Not my ideas, totally stolen from an idea submitted by Newlands Primary School on http://www.segfl.org.uk/microsites2/view_page.php?id=984 . The work together with the doorfames look reat and the children are really proud of themselves. One child who is a reluctant writer said to me "This is my best ever writing". What more can you wish for?

23/04/09 - Day 4

By now the children were gagging to go through the door. We spent quite a lot of time deciding what could be through the door. My favourite explanation was that it could be the Myst version of the Narnia wardrobe, taking you to a different land....closer than you might think!!

The plan was to write a description of Atrus today but the children steered the lesson and once we had explored the study and watched the speech by Atrus tge children got so excited to see this "magical yet gruesome" person appearing. Of course they wanted to follow him but I held firm and we started to talk about what sort of person he was and ended up describing him instead. the children loved using the thesaurus' to pick better words (and usually it is SUCH a battle to get them to use them). Today was just the groundwork and tomorrow we wll be putting our descriptions together. I really can't wait to see what they write.

Quote 1 of the day "Mrs Weed, I wish every week could be a Myst week" to which I replied "Well you're in luck because this is a Myst term"............"Oh YES!! I love you, Mrs Weed. Thank you thank you thank you!!" :)

Quote 2 of the day "I can't wait to see what we are writing about today "...................!!!!!!

24/04/09 - Day 5

I can't believe we have reached Friday already! And I can't believe what we have achieved. I'm not sure if this is a complete co-incidence but the behaviour of the children this week has been incredible, they have been more focussed in lessons and played better on the playground. They seem more GROWN UP this week. When we wanted to choose the special mention for assembly this week, my TA and I were of the opinion that they all deserved it, and they truly did. I feel incredibly proud.

Today we wrote out our descriptions of 'the mysterious man' and the children are really taking on board the idea of 'stealing' good words and ideas. They are also remembering to maintain their Myst wordbooks, which is a pleasure to see. I feel as though they are getting joy out of finding better words (I call them grown-up words which seems to work with these particular children). The children typed the descriptions directly and uploaded them as soon as they were done. We're really getting the hang of the wikispaces thing!

My planning for this week is here:

Roll on week 2!!!!