Friday, May 9, 2014

iBook Summary

For our final group project, we were asked to create an iBook or a Prezi. My group, Athens, chose to create an iBook. We named ours, "Once Upon a Time in EDM 310". This had a Disney theme that we kept throughout the iBook. I think it was really cute and enjoyable, but I am a little partial of course. Our iBook displays a lot of the things we have learned in our EDM 310 class. It consists of our favorite blogs posts, pictures that we chose, podcasts, and a lot of other things. This iBook is proof that we have learned so much this semester. It's also symbolic of a great group that I was apart of this semester. We all worked hard in this class and it also signifies success. Here are a few pictures that show a preview of our iBook. Enjoy!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Blog Post #15 - My Final Reflection

It's been a great semester! I have enjoyed learning about so many new things that I can use in the future when I teach at an elementary school. Thanks for following my blog through the semester and continue to watch for reflections after I start teaching.

Monday, April 21, 2014

C4T #4

My teacher for this C4T is Tony Baldasaro. In his latest blog post called, "9 Words", he talks about the impact that words can make on someone. The CEO at his school said, "If we are really going to change the world..." These 9 words had a bigger impact on the staff rather than saying something else like, "If we are going to get a board approval," or etc. The mission of their school is to change the world. He believes this should be all schools mission statements, and if not, they should think again.

Tony has not yet posted a new blog post, so I chose to comment on a previous blog called, "On Being Attracted". He stated that teachers and parents often say that kids are distracted from the work they are supposed to be doing because of technology. He then says that we should think about it in a different light. Maybe kids aren't that easily distracted and are more easily attracted to technology. He ends his blog post with, "It’s time we focus on being attracted and less with trying to compete with being distracted."

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

C4K - April

This week, I was assigned to comment on Henry's blog. He posted a google slide show about robots. He guides the robot on a path by pressing certain buttons. He would show a grid, showing what path the robot had went on. He would also give you the path through letters (the buttons he had pressed to make him go certain ways). For example: F=Forward, B=Backward, L=Left, and R=Right. So for one path it may be "LFFFFLFF". It was a really cute and interesting idea!

For my second week in April, I got Bobby-Jon. In his latest blog post called, "My Very Fabulous Friends", he posted a picture of him and his friend. Above the picture he posted, "I love my friend because he backs me up." I find it cool that he said 'backs me up', which is a type of slang that we also say in America. Booby-Jon is from New Zealand, so I find it interesting that things are said the same on the other side of the earth.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Blog Post #13

This week I have been asked to create an assignment that I feel like Dr. Strange left out that would be in my area of expertise. The assignment I chose to create, would be very helpful to elementary teachers in my opinion. It can result as resources for teacher's to use when they teach. I believe this would be a great starter blog post to let EDM students get the hang of the system.

Here's the assignment I would have loved to have been assigned in EDM 310:

This week, research different apps for iPads that can be used to supplement learning in different subjects in the elementary classroom. Give a brief description of what the app does and if it is free or costs money. If you do not own an iPad, you may use one from the lab, or simply research the app through the app store's website. If you happen to not find an app that interests you or that you feel doesn't fit, describe an app that you feel should be made for the iPad! You will need to give at least one example for each subject. The subjects you need to include are:

1. Mathematics
2. Social Studies
3. Science
4. Language Arts
5. Reading

Here is my example of the post I would give for this assignment:

I have listed some really fun learning apps for certain subjects that are taught in an elementary classroom. I really enjoyed researching these apps and plan on using them when I become a teacher. I hope you also find these apps helpful.

1. Mathematics: My Math Flash Cards App- This app is made to use flashcards for elementary math facts. You can do addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division on the flash cards. It gives sounds effect for feedback for the students. It's a very simple math app for students to supplement their learning. This app is also free!

2. Social Studies: 4th grade Reading Comprehension Social Studies Free App- This app caters to fourth grade students, but the same developer also has this app for other grade levels. This app happens to work for both reading and social studies. As for the social studies side, this app includes 20 different stories about social studies. This helps students learn fourth grade history information while improving their reading comprehension at the same time. This app is also completely free.

3. Science: Enjoy Learning Anatomy Model Puzzle App- This app is great for learning about organs and bones! This is a puzzle where you can do just organs or just bones. You could also choose to do organs and bones, though. It's a really fun and interactive way to learn about the anatomy of the body! This app is free and fun!

4. Language Arts: Third Grade Skills Language Arts- This app is really helpful for the elementary classroom. For example, it gives you a list of words, and you can choose which is a noun/adjective or even what the subject of a sentence may be. There are many different language arts subjects that you can learn from this app. It seems very simple and easy for students to use daily. This app is $1.99.

5. Reading: Read Me Stories - Children's Books- This app is a wonderful reading app. This app has great reviews and is free to everyone! There is a new book everyday on this app. It shows great pictures and graphics with the books so the students can use all of their resources to read well and comprehend. Touching the characters in the pictures even creates new story lines. This seems like a really great app that would get kids really engaged in their early reading stages.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Blog Post #12

Assistive technology is something great to use in schools. Assistive technology is used to help children with learning disabilities. iPads are commonly used in schools now. I decided to do research on my own. I found several apps for iPads that have been reviewed for use in schools. The National Center for Learning Disabilities gives an extensive list of apps that are great to assist in education. You can view the list of writing difficulty apps here. The Dragon Dictation app was very appealing to me because students can talk and the app recognizes the voice and turns it into text. They also list apps to help with different learning disabilities. There are so many different apps that could be helpful in the classroom now.

Something else that I think would be really helpful to students struggling in math, is a talking calculator. The calculator will read aloud the numbers, symbols, answers, and etc. This vocalizes everything for student who have problems with mathematics. I also believe that it could help students with ADD or ADHD, but helping them focus on the task at hand. I personally can get side tracked, and if a calculator was talking to me, I believe I would also pay more attention. More information on talking calculators can be found here.

Another great assistive technology is screen readers. They have devices for this, programs, and applications. I know for a fact that Macs have screen readers on them, since I have a Mac myself. If you do not have a Mac then you can download software for this. A great example of software that can be downloaded is JAWS. This software is made specifically for Windows computers. It's known to be a great product to help educate blind students!

These are just a few of the assistive technologies that stuck out to me. There are so many other things that you can use to assist children with learning disabilities in the classroom. Technology makes learning so much easier for LD students and we need to take advantage of what we have available to us.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Blog Post #11

Project #10

In this video, I interviewed Mrs. Regina Everett. She is a 5th grade American History teacher at Saraland Middle School. She was also Alabama Elementary teacher of the year and Mobile County teacher of the year twice. She tells me how project based learning helped with her astounding teaching accomplishments.

Monday, March 31, 2014

C4K - March

My child for this week is named, Bitner. In Bitner's post, he talked about going to his Nana's house. He had a short video about what he did over the weekend at his Nana's. He said that he slept in the big chair, and it was really fun. He also drew a picture on Kid Pix (This looks similar to the paint program) of him at his Nana's. Bitner is now learning to write sentences independently and correctly in New Zealand.

The next child I was assigned, is named John. He is a year 5 student from New Zealand. In his blog post called, "Mapping", he posted a map with an assignment on the side. It would ask him to state the location of a symbol, or to draw a symbol in a certain location. I understood what it was right away. It's awesome to see children do things the same, all the way around the world.

My new child is Shanika. In her latest blog post, she created a table. This table has different math facts in it. I do not understand all of it, to be honest. I'd love to know more about it and maybe I could use it with my future students. It includes, "Groups within 100 Doubles and Halves", "2, 5 and 10 Division Facts", "How many 10s, 100s, 1000s in these numbers", "3x, 4x, 6x, 7x, 8x, 9x Tables", "Decimal and Fraction Sequence (carry on the sequence", and "Ordering numbers (Use symbols to put fractions/numbers in order smallest to largest)".

Saturday, March 29, 2014

C4T #3

Wesley Fryer's post this week is called, Preparing for a Stopmotion Art Project. Wesley talks about how the art teacher at his school makes stop motion videos with the students. She created a stand for their classroom iPads out of cardboard and duct tape. This stand holds the iPad upright so that they can do the video. They used the Stop Motion Cafe application for iPad to make this movie and it is completely free for all that they needed to do. Here is a video that they made in the class:

In Wesley Fryer's latest post, The Evolution of BYOD for our Church Session, he talks about how many organizations are allowing people to bring their own devices to meetings. At his church, they just started bringing their own devices. They used to send out needed documents through emails. Now, they use dropbox, and just send the link to the dropbox to everyone in an email. It's much easier to do it this way. He stated that a lot of school boards are now allowing students to bring their own devices. Of course I can see where that can be good and bad. Wesley is curious to see who else uses the method of BYOD (bring your own device) also.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Project #15

Road Sign Shapes Lesson Plan

This lesson plan involves shapes found on road signs. Students are given a list of shapes, and must find those shapes throughout town and take a picture of them. Once they have all their pictures, they must make a PowerPoint or Google slide presentation with the pictures. On each slide they must name the shape and tell where they found the sign. I think this is a great hands-on way for students to learn about their shapes that they see in everyday life.

Project 12 - Part A

In this video, myself and two of my fellow group members demonstrate how to use Smartboards.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Blog Post #10

The question is: What can we learn from Sir Ken Robinson?

In Sir Ken Robinson's video, Bring on the Learning Revolution, he talks about our education system. Education is currently reforming. He states that reform is bad in this case. Reforming means that we are just improving a broken model. We are trying to fix something that already does not work properly. We do not need evolution, but a revolution in our education systems. Through a revolution, we can transform the education system into something else, that is more effective.

I learned from Sir Ken Robinson, that education can often take away from people's natural talents. Most people have talents and do not even know it. If they do know their talents, they often times don't use them. Talent is so diverse in this world, and education needs to foster that talent. For this reason, he believes that students don't always need to go to college right away. They can go later, once they know their talents and wants in life. He then talked about a man that wanted to be a fireman all of his life. His teacher didn't take him seriously, and called him out in front of the class. The teacher told him that he was wasting potential, and that he should go to college and actually do something good with his life. The man was embarrassed and in shock. After the man lived out his dreams and became a fireman, he ended up saving his teacher's life in a car accident. He gave him CPR and also ended up saving his wife. Everyone has different talents, and we need to understand that as teachers.

Another thing that we can learn from Sir Ken Robinson is that our education is becoming like the fast food industry. It is very standardized. The food from the fast food industries is depleting to our physical bodies, just like education is depleting students passions and talents. Education no longer feeds passion. He explains that his wife recently wrote a book, and would disappear for hours on end. She felt as if she was gone for no time at all. Whenever you have passion, and love what you are doing, time flies by so quickly. Everything is so standard in education now, that it does not help students flourish. We cannot predict the outcome of human development, but we can foster the conditions of the students, so that hopefully, they will flourish. As a teacher in the making, this video really helped me put things into perspective. I will always need to remember that everyone is different and has different talents. Being different is not a bad thing, and I need to help those talents flourish.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Blog Post #9

What can we learn from Ms. Cassidy? Well, I don't know about you, but I was surprised at the amount of things that her first graders are doing in her classroom. In the video, First Graders in Ms. Cassidy's Class, I got to see all of the things that she has her students do in her classroom. I really loved how the students told how the technology benefited them. They stated that they use blogs to show their progress in writing. A student even said that their writing gets better every time that they post. They use wiki's to ask questions, and people from around the world can give their answers. They leave videos on their blogs, so that it can act as a portfolio, and their progress can visually be seen. They use Skype to talk to other classes around the world- I bet the students really enjoy this. The last thing that I thought was really cool, was the use of Nintendo DS's. I have never seen them used in the classroom before. Students said that the DS's help them with sharing and problem solving skills. It's fun and beneficial!

In the Skype videos of Ms. Cassidy, there were several things that stuck out to me. She mentioned that technology is never going away. I do agree with her, but there are a lot of schools that need to upgrade their technology resources. That is really the main impediment I could foresee happening in my area. The school I observe at has Smart Boards, but not iPads for each room, and things of that nature. To fix these problems in my own classroom, I could apply for grants to get more resources. I could even write letters to the school board about my concerns. Another thing that stuck out to me, was when she said that college is the best time to learn technology. She is right, we need to learn as many things as we can in college. College is the best time for learning and growing in our future careers, and we need to take advantage of that. As for Ms. Cassidy's approaches, she has definitely went all the way. She uses technology in what seems to be all of her courses. I could picture myself using the blogs for my classroom. I think it would truly be a great way for students to improve their writing. Plus, students can get comments on their blog, and that always makes them feel so special. If you would like to view Ms. Cassidy's blog, it can be found here.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Project #9

My group was so much fun to work with in this project. We had discussed what we were going to talk about in the podcast, but ended up adding more things that we thought of as we went along. It was a real conversation. It was also a lot of fun and I hope you enjoy listening to us.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Project #14

Money Fair Lesson Plan

My lesson plan for project #14 is about showing kids how money is spent in everyday life. Students will be required to choose a product/good to make and "sell" at a fair at the end of the week in class. When making the goods, students will also need to have their parent/guardian take an instructional video on how to make the product. The day of the fair, students will be allotted five fake dollars to use and buy goods. After they have the fair, the next day, parents will be allowed to come to the classroom and watch the instructional videos with the students. This is a great way for kids to learn about saving and spending money and they should have a lot of fun in doing so!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Blog Post #8

In doing my research for this post, I found some really great sites and tools to use in my future teaching. I was asked to find 21st century learning and communicating tools. When I first read the objectives, I kind of thought it would be hard to find things I could use in the classroom. I literally googled 'education tools' and found a big board on Pinterest with so many tools to use! Pinterest is also a tool I have mentioned, and it always comes in handy.

The first learning tool I am going to talk about is TubeChop. One day in class this semester, I had a teacher tell me that she really wished she could let students see parts of a movie to get the meaning, but knew she couldn't because parts of it was inappropriate. TubeChop can take YouTube videos, and chop the video into certain parts that you want. This way, you can show children certain clips that can be educational.

Another great tool I found is very similar to Blogger. It is called, Weebly. Weebly is specifically made for teachers to create class websites. Students can even make them too and it is great for blogging. It is protected for the students, so they can only see appropriate content. There are also so many different gadgets you can add to the blogs. It is free, therefore, teachers should have no problems with using this site.

My favorite that I have found is Blendspace. On Blendspace teachers can create a class (They can make more than one if they teach other classes) and in that class, they can make lessons. Once you have created a class, you give your students their class code so that they can register in their class. On their class page, they can view lessons, take quizzes, and even do collaborative projects. Through Blendspace, teachers can track their students' participation. You can see how long students spent on different things. They can also do help requests on different resources that you can track too. You may also add other features for an additional price, but otherwise, Blendspace is free. The lesson plans I looked at throughout the website are so fun and creative. You can make videos, diagrams, voice clips, and so many other interesting things. Students can also reply to the lessons and post their responses in the same way. Blendspace has also just added an application for iPads, making it even more convenient. Blendspace is very new to me, but from what I have learned through this research, it seems like an extremely great resource to use in the classroom. I think students could get really creative on this website.

These are only a few of the great resources I have found. I could probably go on forever if I had to. There are so many new and exciting things that teachers can be using in their classrooms, and I will take advantage of these things I have found when I teach. By the time I start teaching, there will be even more new and fun tools to use you. If you want to learn about even more useful tools for the classroom, check out Eric Sheninger's, "Web 2.0 Tools for Educators" board on Pinterest.

C4T #2

Henrietta Miller writes about the "No hands up" approach to asking students questions. This approach is just to simply not call on children by them raising their hands as most teachers often do. Instead, put their names on cards or popsicle sticks, or even use apps for it. She explains that whenever teachers rely on students to raise their hands, they basically give students permission to not participate if they don't want to. Most students won't even raise their hand unless they are sure that it is the right answer. Some students just like to talk, but their are the others that are shy and don't like to talk at all. I wholeheartedly agree with Henrietta, we do not need to allow students to shut off, and stray from learning. If we randomly call on students, we will be able to make sure they are listening and are engaged.

Henrietta Miller's next blog post is a question.. "Who owns your classroom?" Henrietta explains that her students normally do not care to keep the classroom neat. She is wondering whether it is because they have no ownership of the room. She tells how another teacher at her school lets her students hang their own things on the walls, and lets them sit wherever they please. Does this give the students more ownership of the classroom they are in? She asks for others' thoughts on the topic. In all honesty, I would think that students would react more to their own things on the walls, rather than perfect displays that they don't pay attention to. One thing I really loved in elementary school, was having an "A" wall. If you made an A on a test, it got put on the wall. Students felt special when they got an A, and it gave them incentives. If teachers let students have a little more ownership, maybe they would care more about the classroom and learning.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Project #13

The Renaissance Projects

In our lesson plan for 9th grade World History students, we decided to let them get a feel of the Renaissance. This project is in two parts. In the first part of the project, students will be divided into groups of four and assigned a Renaissance artist. They will create a slideshow to tell about the artists life, with a ten slide minimum. In the second part of this project, we like to call it "The Michaelangelo Project". Students will get to tape paper under a desk or table, and lay on mats to get a feel of what it was like for Michaelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel. They will get to recreate one of his works of art in the Sistine Chapel. Students will not be graded on the aesthetic properties, but on their participation and effort. I feel like this project is very hands on, and will be so fun and interesting for students - I wish my teachers in the past had done something this creative!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Blog Post #7

First, I'd like to say how much I enjoyed this video, Randy Pausch's Last Lecture: Achieving Your Childhood Dreams. Randy was so inspirational to me. Randy was a professor at Carnegie Mellon University. After he found out he only had six months to live, due to pancreatic cancer, he gave "The Last Lecture". Regardless of the imminent problems that he was facing, he was enjoying the rest of his life. He could easily say that he had accomplished his childhood dreams. For that reason, he strived to help others achieve their childhood dreams. He strongly advocated achieving your dreams. You have to do what needs to be done, in order to achieve them. After passing away at age 47, Dr. Randy Pausch left behind a grand legacy. He has inspired and effected so many people. Randy did not wait around for his dreams to fall in his lap, he made them happen.

My favorite thing that Randy talked about from the beginning was brick walls. Why brick walls? Well, Randy Pausch tells us that brick walls are there to show us how much we want something. This really hit home for me. I have had brick walls all of my life. He is right, it showed me how much I wanted to achieve all of my goals. This is a great lesson for teaching and learning. I believe this to be true, because when you teach you will have obstacles. For example, a child may not be learning to read at the same pace as all of the other students. Although you have this brick wall, it can show to you how much you really want this child to succeed and catch up to their peers. As for learning, it basically happens the same way. For example, a student may be having extreme difficulties with long division. They hit a brick wall. This brick wall can show them that they need to learn this to move along, and that they want to learn it! Brick walls are opportunities to realize what you want to achieve, and give you the chance to prove it. This perspective is very inspirational, and I am definitely going to display his quote about brick walls in my future classroom.

Something really great that I learned about from Dr. Pausch is a "Head Fake". Head faking is when teachers basically trick their students. No, not in an evil and sinister way. It's all about the learning process. For example, a group of students may be doing a project together on photosynthesis. They believe that they are just learning about photosynthesis, and doing a project on it to get a grade. Although, they doing both of those things, they are also learning about many other things. This can include responsibility, teamwork, patience, and etc. It is great for students to learn multiples things at one time, and they don't even realize it. The same can be said for teaching also. Teachers can also learn multiple things at once to enhance their teaching. An example of this could be that a teacher attended a workshop on art for the elementary classroom. She was attending a class she knew was for art, but could have also learned things about time management, science and social studies incorporation in art, patience, and etc. Head faking is an excellent way to learn without even knowing it.

Randy Pausch taught students how to make virtual realities. Dr. Pausch was obviously an advocater of Project Based Learning. What I gained from him showing this part of his life is; I learned that giving students creative leeway, is a good thing. He would let his students choose what they wanted to do and he was amazed at their performance. He gave them the power of choice, and they learned how to do a lot of things on their own in order to complete the virtual reality. This is something we do a lot in EDM310. Through self-learning, we really do learn a lot more than we think. This gives us the opportunity to do independent learning and get hands-on. This is a great method for teaching and learning.

Dr. Randy Pausch taught me so many more things about teaching and learning, but these areas stood out the most to me. Randy has become an inspiration to me. He has truly taught me to reach for the stars and never give up. Thank you, Dr. Strange for allowing us to watch this video and learn about Dr. Pausch. I am truly in awe of Randy's accomplishments.

C4K - February

In my selected child, Matthew's, blog post, he talks about how players did not get inducted into the MLB Hall of Fame if they were using performance enhancing drugs this year. He also brought up a very smart question. What kind of cheating is using PED's, or is it even considered cheating? To me, and many others it is definitely cheating. What kind of cheating would you call it though? Matthew brought up many great points and I was very impressed with this blog post.

In Molly's blog post, she asked, "What would you do if you were locked in your favorite department store overnight?" She replied that if she were locked in her favorite store, Target, she would have a hay day! She would get some Starbucks, expensive items, and stock up on food. She seems like a very fun and outgoing young girl. I told her I would also have myself a little hay day in Target!

Olivia talked about her band trip with her school. She thanked her band teacher, Mrs. Jones, that she said she would miss when she went to high school. She also thanked the band members and told them what a great job they did. She was so excited, because her band got gold. She seems like a very successful young girl.

Kuminai posted a really cool gadget in her blog. It shows pictures with quotes on them. Most of them say, "What goes around, comes around." They also wrote about synonyms, misconceptions, and rules of beliefs. I don't totally understand the concept of this blog post, but I think the gadget they used is very interesting.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Blog Post #6

Personal Learning Networks, or PLN's, are tools that you can use in your teaching. It can consist of people, applications, and other sources for learning. These PLN's can help you learn more as a teacher. This is because you can use these resources to find out information that you did not previously know. You can form PLN's by simply finding people on Twitter or other networking sites, that are professionals in the area you need help in. You can also find websites, tools, and applications that can give you information you need to know.

For the first additions of my education PLN, I would love to include two great, knowledgable teachers I have learned a lot from. That would happen to be Dr. Strange (@DrJohnHadley) and Dr. Vitulli (@PaigeVitulli). Honestly, as of now, I don't have many other people would add to my list. I will be able to add even more whenever I have new professors, colleagues, and meet other professionals.

As for tools I can use, I know a few great ones that I can use. First off, I love Twitter. Twitter is a great way stay in-the-know. You can follow professionals on Twitter, and learn things every day from what they tweet. TeacherTube is also a great way to learn, and a great resource to keep in my personal learning network. TeacherTube has education appropriate content, with many videos you can learn new things from. It is very similar to YouTube, but would not be blocked on school computers. One of my personal favorites is Pinterest. Pinterest has so many neat ideas to do in the classroom, and new things to learn. Anytime I need an idea, I go to Pinterest to help me get a jump start. You can also pin your own ideas to Pinterest so that others can see and use your ideas.

These are only the beginning of my PLN. As teachers, we will be lifetime learners. Therefore, I will continually be adding to my personal learning network. I'm eager to learn about more resources and people that I can add to my PLN to help me grow and become a better teacher in the making.

Project #8

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Blog Post #5

From Project Based Learning Part 1, I got a great overview of what project based learning really is. I already had a good idea of what is was from my previous assignments, but this gave me a better insight. PBL is not necessarily a means of showing what a child has achieved but also a process of learning. You make the project so that the child will learn all that they need to know throughout the process. PBL is even more appealing to students whenever it interests them. Most importantly, you have to go by standards of the state to make sure the child is learning the content that is needed before doing the project and during the project. Project based learning can cover a variety of different subjects in one project, and is very effective for learning the content. Anthony also gave an example where he used iCurio with his students. It's great to see teachers actually using the resources that we are learning about/using in this class.

After watching, Project Based Learning Part 2, I learned that not all projects will always go as planned. Some parents may not agree with your choice of project. If this happens, you need to respect the parent's wishes and give them an alternative project that will please the parent and still go by course standards. Another great thing, is to let student have their own choices in their projects. They take pride in their creativity and thoughts, and it gives them a great sense of worth. Project based learning is engaging and fun for students, which makes it a lot easier to learn.

iCurio is a search engine that is education friendly. It is filtered so that only child appropriate content will appear whenever a student searches. iCurio also allows students and teachers to store information or anything they find. This will help them stay organized and learn to stay organized at an early age. iCurio has different search engines, directories, a read aloud command, and many other features that are helpful to students.

From my understanding, Discovery Ed is a program that teachers and students can use for research. It has videos that show experts in many different fields of science and social studies. This is great for students, because most students learn more effectively when they can see things visually.

The Anthony - Strange Tips for Teachers Part 1 gives some very interesting and helpful tips for new teachers. To be a teacher, you need to be interested and wanting to learn yourself. Teachers are constantly learning new things. Teaching is hard work, but it is fun if you make it that way. Teaching is also a very rewarding career. There are so many other helpful tips for new teachers, but these stood out to me the most. Teaching is fast-paced, but you have to keep your goals and the end in mind. Teaching is always worth it when your students learn what you set out to teach them.

Technology is still a controversial subject in schools, even though we are immersed in it everyday. In Don't Teach Tech - Use It, Anthony tells everyone that you should not teach technology, but use it as a scaffold to assignments. He lets his students use one technology at a time, so that they learn it by using it, and will know how to use it for future needs. They normally make mistakes, but that gives you time to reflect on what they did wrong, and you can show them how to fix the problems. Never expect your students to be perfect when they are trying something new. :)

Additional Thought About Lessons tells you that you need to plan your lessons ahead of time and go through everything thoroughly. You have to be able to get everything in your lessons done everyday/every week and in an effective time. You need to keep your students hooked and engaged to keep them learning your planned lessons and keep them on track as well as yourself.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Blog Post #4

What do we need to know about asking questions to be an effective teacher?

The Right Way to Ask Questions in the Classroom, really brought to light what teachers are doing wrong when they ask their students questions. Teachers assume that if the class does not have questions, that they can move on with the lesson. Sadly, most students are not even sure if they do or do not understand the lesson. Teachers make a mistake whenever they get their students to raise their hands to answers questions. This is because there will always be those students that do not care, and do not want to learn it. These kids will just sit back, and let the more involved children answer the questions so they do not have to. This is not helping their students to learn. If you call on students in this manner, most of the kids will just be relieved they did not get called on, and still will not figure out the answer. A better way to ask students questions, is to randomly select different students. This way, students will never know who will be called on, and will hopefully have their answer. A good way to do this, is by making equity sticks. You can make these with popsicle sticks, and write each child's name on a stick and place it in a cup. Then, you can draw a stick to call on a child. This ensures that different children get a turn to answer questions. It will also help more quiet and shy students to speak out in front of the class.

Asking Questions to Improve Learning also gives a lot of great suggestions on how to ask questions, what kind to ask, how to respond, and etc. One thing in this resource that I found very important, is how the teacher responds to their student's answers. As a teacher, you really need to show your students that you are interested in their responses, whether they are right or wrong. Show that you are actually listening to them and that you care about what they have to say. If the student does happen to give a wrong answer, tell them what is incorrect, and ask a follow up question to lead them in the right direction. Students can get very embarrassed if their answers are wrong, therefore, you really need to be gentle and help them go in the right direction when responding to a wrong answer. This resource also shows us how open-ended questions are helpful in the classroom. They can be used to elaborate, to predict possible outcomes, to illustrate a concept, and many other things.

Can we now answer our question? "What do we need to know about asking questions to be an effective teacher?" I believe we can. Of course there are so many different ways and methods to ask questions, but these are what I found to be most helpful. As future teachers, we will also learn new and even more helpful methods whenever we are in an actual classroom setting. We just need to observe the teachers we work with to learn new things that could be extremely helpful to us in our future classroom.

C4T #1

In my assigned teacher's post, Pernille Ripp, How About a Little Change?, she wrote about change in the classroom. She is a fan of big changes in the classroom, but she realizes that big changes are sometimes hard for students and even the teachers. For that reason, Pernille gives several ideas on how you can still bring change into the classroom, but in smaller intervals and situations. For example (One of the things I found most appealing), she made the statement that instead of getting rid of grades all together, that you can let your students help with rubrics and defend their grades. I also found that appealing since we do this in EDM 310! All in all, Pernille Ripp gave many great ideas on how to bring about change in the classroom, if you cannot do big change. I plan on using some of these ideas when I finally become a teacher!

In Pernille's newest post, My Five Year Old Schools Me On Grades, she writes about the effects of report card grades on students and parents. Pernille is a 5th grade teacher, but also a mom to a five year old. She was distraught to know that her daughter's grades were not up to the class standards. She felt as if she had failed as a mom, and could have done something differently. She only focused on the negative, instead of the postive, which is what most parents do in this situation. Her teacher side then kicked in, and she remembered how much she hated grades. She remembered that her child will be fine and will learn what she needs to learn in her own time, and the grades did not matter as much to her. She asks, "Why do we give grades so much power?" Why do we? I totally agree with her. Grades are letters, they do not define your self-worth, even though people let them all the time. Everyone is different, and not everyone learns as fast as others.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Blog Post #3

Peer editing is where you help out fellow classmates (whom are normally around the same age as you), to improve their writing. In the video, What is Peer Editing?, it gives you the basics of peer editing for everyday life. First, you need to give compliments to your peer, and tell them something that they did well or that you liked. This also means you need to stay positive and be kind when you give suggestions on what they should do differently. You also need to be specific when giving suggestions. Next, you would need to give corrections on spelling, grammar, punctuation, and etc.

In the slideshow, Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial, it also tells you the basic steps of peer editing. Just as the first video, it tells you to first give compliments, next you give suggestions, and last you give corrections. This slideshow is my favorite resource that we looked at for this post. I liked this the most because it gives you the same information, but I can flip through the slideshow at my own pace.

In the video, Writing Peer Reviews Top 10 Mistakes, 4th and 5th graders act out 10 things you should not do when giving peer reviews. You should not be a "Picky Patty", and pick out every little thing wrong that you see in your peers' paper. Next is "Whatever William", and he does not care about what he did wrong in his paper. "Social Sammy" socializes with all of the other group partners and does not get any work done! "Jean the Generalizer" does not give specific corrections for her peers. "Mean Margaret" is just as she sounds, she is not kind when giving her reviews. "Loud Larry" is way too loud and disruptive when giving his reviews. "Pushy Paula" insists that you take her advice, even if it is not right. "Off-Task Oliver" is always getting off the topic of the review. "Speedy Sandy" thinks it is a race to the finish to get the review done. Last but not least, "Defensive Dave" takes his feedback from his peer way too personally. I really enjoyed this video because I believe it would be a great video to show to my future students about peer editing. This video is great for students since it relates to them and is done by students.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Blog Post #2

In the video, Mr. Dancealot, the central message of this video is that hands on and visual learning is needed in the classroom. The author proved his theory by showing that none of the students learned the dances for their final due to the lack of visuals. The students only got notes from the power points and lectures, and did not get to physically participate in any of the dances they were "learning". How can you learn a dance from reading a book and notes? It is not impossible, but not very easy at all. I agree with his conclusion because I too believe that hands on learning is the best and easiest way to learn. If you can see, and actually do what you are learning, then knowledge will be faster and easier to retain.

In the video, Teaching in the 21st Century, Kevin Roberts is trying to get the point across that teaching is not the same as it used to be. We have so much technology now and new things come out every year. He asks in the beginning if this technology will make teachers obsolete. Most people think that this is true. Teachers are now becoming "filters". Students can now get so much information from the internet, but who will filter this and separate right from wrong? Teachers. He also believes that instead of "entertaining" students, we need to engage them, which leads to more learning and less hassle. I agree with Roberts to a certain extent. It is true that teachers will become and are becoming filters. But I believe teachers are certainly needed for more than just that. Teachers teach life lessons and make learning a lot more simple. We do, although, need to engage more with students, and technology does help with that aspect of learning. If Roberts' theory is true, schools could just revert to just online teaching. I do not agree that that would be the best case scenario, but it is possible. Students still need the visual aspect of learning and we cannot do everything online like some people think.

In the video, Networked Student, it basically shows how a student networks with other students and finds resources using technology for their classwork. It also shows that most students now rely mainly on themselves and technology to get their work done. It then asks why we need the teacher if we can find/do everything online and through networking. My reaction is that, sadly, not everyone has access to this technology. A lot of students do not have the money for these new technologies, and even school systems do not have the money for it. I somewhat resent the idea that technology has taken away from a lot of things in life. For example, we eventually may not have books or newspapers. As stated above, some people think it may even replace teachers. Students do not need to solely rely on technology and it should not be the focus of all attention. We need to learn other, more important things in life, rather than how to hear lectures from other college professors, when we pay our own professor to do this task. Students will always need teachers and not just for filtering what students find on the internet. The same goes for technology though, we will always need to advance and learn about the new technology. Although, in my opinion, we should not put as much emphasis on technology as we do today.

In the video, Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts, the teacher is showing how effective technology is in the classroom. I agree that technology can be affective and normally is, but we do not need everything to revolve around it. Technology can make learning fun and interesting just as the teacher stated. As I said before though, not everyone has access to these forms of learning and it may not be the best option for all students. Technology in the classroom would be a lot more simple if we had no poverty in the world.

In the video, Flipping the Classroom, it explains what this method is. Flipping a classroom requires the students to watch a video of their teacher at home and learn about their lessons before they come to school. They believe this will give them time to learn the material and figure out questions that need to be asked. This method is completely new to me. I have never heard of this before. I think this could become an effective approach to teaching. Normally I would say what I have said before, that not every student has access to a computer. As soon as I had that thought, the teacher explained that if a student does not have a computer, that they can watch the video once they get to school and have time to think about everything. I think it is a great way to speed up the learning process and help students retain more knowledge!