Thursday, December 6, 2012

Final Report on Project 13

screenshot of text between group member
In my progress report I stated that we used text messaging to communicate with each other about our project. We also used email to email each other what we had created so far with the lesson plan. We met on Thursday, November 29 to record our lesson. We did not discuss anything at that time. All we did was run through how we were going to teach the lesson for the camera and then we recorded. I would say our project was a success and that we did a pretty good job communicating with each other with out face to face meetings.

Final Reflection

I apologize in advanced for saying the word "cool" way too many times.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Comments for Teachers # 4

self portrit of Justin Bieber
For this week I was assigned to Mr. Burrow's Art Viewer blog. This entire blog is composed of student artwork. The most recent post consisted of self portraits. Some included portraits of Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber. These portraits were pencil sketches, and some were extremely good. All of them were better than anything that I could have drawn.
I left Mr. Burrows a comment saying how I felt like I was in the self portrait section of a museum or something. I told him that I really enjoyed these portraits and how I wished I could draw as well as his students.

C4K Summary for November and December

Children with computers
This week I had the pleasure of reading a wonderful blog post by an 8th grade student in Iowa named, Ayla B. I encourage you all to check out this particular blog post that I read of hers titled Novel. She is in the process of writing a really good novel without a name. It's 4 chapters long and it is really good! I can tell she is a fan of the Hunger Games series because I found a lot of similarities in her writing.
I left Ayla a comment letting her now how impressed I was with her writing! I asked where she found her inspiration to write this and if she had a name for the novel yet. I wished her luck with the rest of her writing and I encouraged to keep up the good work.

For this week, I was assigned to read Tyler Remez's blog, a 5th grade student out of Chicago. His blog post, titled October Reflections, was a summary of all of the activities Tyler's class did in the month of October. He talked about how his class wrote scary stories for Halloween. Tyler's was about a kid who got locked into a haunted pumpkin farm. Next he talked about a monster bash, which are science experiments that were related to Halloween as well. He then talked about their jammin-jobs they are assigned to every two weeks. He also talked about the Global Read Aloud group and how they read the book, The One and Only Ivan. The last thing Tyler talked about in his post was about tour stops. He explains that these are a lot like stations and that they do them 4 times a week.
I left Tyler a comment saying how the month of October sounded like a fun month for their class. I let him know that I thought the Monster bash sounded especially exciting. I asked if he created the little slideshow that was included at the end of his post because I enjoyed being able to see the things he did that he described in his post. I ended by saying that I hope the month of November is just as fun and exciting as the month of october was.

I as assigned a tenth grade english student at Baldwin County High from Ms. Martin's class. The students name was Mallory. Her blog post can be found here. Her post was comparing the bird in the poem, The Caged Bird, with the character, Melinda, in the movie Speak. She did an outstanding job with comparing the two. Mallory says how the bird is tied and screams for freedom can be compared with Melinda in high school begging for freedom from being bullied.
I left Mallory a comment saying how I enjoyed her comparison of the two and how I thought she did a good job. I also talked a little about bulling in high school and that if she sees a student being bullied to approach the student and show that someone cares.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Blog post # 13

 I can't afford to go to college
For this assignment I watched the video, A vision of Students Today. This video was made with the help of 200 Kansas State University students expressing how they learn, their dreams and goals, and what they think their life will be like among many other things. A google document was made that asked what is was like to be a student today. 200 college students were invited to answer that question in the google document and 367 edits were made to that one document. The video then changes to a classroom scene were students hold up a piece of paper expressing how it is like to be a student today. Some of these include how much they might spend a day doing a particular task such as eating, sleeping, watching TV, and doing homework. It all added up to be 26.5 hours a day. Someone else said that they complete 47% of the reading that they are assigned in class but only 26% is actually relevant to their life. One thing that a student said that I can relate to is buying 100 dollar books and not even opening them.

I really enjoyed this video. This video was published in 2007 and I find it interesting that, even with technology advancing at the rate it is, how it felt to be a student then, is the same as today. Teachers require you to buy 100 dollar textbooks that you only use once or twice. There is not enough time in one day to do everything that you wish to do, some things have to cut out. Students pay, or maybe not, for classes that they do not even attend. Students in the video might be $20,000 in debt by the time they graduate. I will be over almost $30,000 in debt. At the end of the video it's stated that technology alone can save students. Though, if you compare then to now, it's almost the same, maybe even worse. How has technology helped out in that aspect of a college students life? Yes classes can be online to save time, but we're still paying hundreds of dollars on textbooks we don't need. So much time is wasted on the computer now than it was in 2007. I think technology has made it easier to for college students to learn. In any other aspect covered in the video, I don't think technology has helped. This is only my personal opinion, of course.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Progress report on the final project

water cycle
The end is so close, I can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel! For project 15 we have to create a lesson plan using the Smart board. Also, the hard part of the assignment is that we are not allowed to meet face to face with our group until the day we film our lesson. So far my group member and I have been texting about our plans. We have decided to do a second grade science lesson on the water cycle. Science is so important and I think with a fun and interactive lesson, the students will be more interested and engaged in learning about this particular lesson.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Blog Post # 12

 smart notebook icon
It's finally here, the chance where we get to make our own blog post assignment! I have been waiting for this ever since I found out that we had to do this. So here are the instructions as Dr. Strange might suggest them:

Blog Post Assignment 12
SMART Notebook activity
For this assignment you are to create your own SMART notebook activity that you might use in your future classroom. You are to create an activity that is in your area of specialty (math, history, elementary ed, special ed, etc). Then you are to film yourself demonstrating the activity. Post the video on Youtube and embed it into your blog
You may either create the activity using a SMART board in one of the classrooms or you may create it at home on your computer by downloading the SMART Notebook software

Download for Window users

For Mac users

You are going to need a Product Key to download this. You may either get it from me or any of the staff members. This key allows you to download it for free.

After downloading the software or before you go to a classroom to begin constructing an activity, I advise you to view these tutorials to help you better understand the SMART board.
Lesson Activity Toolkit Tutorial
Managing Pages Tutorial
Properties Tab Tutorial

Here is my example of the SMART Notebook Activity

Friday, November 9, 2012

Blog Post # 11

Ms. Kathy Cassidy and her use of Technology in Canada, Eh?
Kathy Cassidy
For this blog post, we were assigned to watch and learn about the techniques Ms. Cassidy, a 1st grade teacher in Canada, uses in her classroom. The first video I watched is called Little Kids...Big Potential. This video includes snapshot of students using technology, video clips of kids explaining the different ways they use technology, and audio clips of some of her students. One of the ways her students use technology is blogging. The students have a class blog where they can post what they have been doing in class or a writing assignment Ms. Cassidy gives them to post. Another way they use technology is through skype. Ms. Cassidy sets up various interviews with other students and educators from around the world for her students to interact with. Her students also make various video recording of themselves so they can play them back for critiquing or for other students to collaborate with. Another way that Ms. Cassidy's students use technology in the classroom is with Nintendo DS. The students can play a variety of educational games to allow a more fun and interactive learning experience.

Next I watched a Skype interview between Ms. Cassidy and Dr. Strange and a few of his former students. Dr. Strange asks Ms. Cassidy a variety of questions on her thoughts about technology in the classroom and how she uses it in her classroom. Some of the questions include how she got started using technology in her classroom, how and if other teachers in her school are using technology in their classrooms, and if the administrators support her methods of teaching. Dr. Strange also asks for advice for future students in using technology in their future classrooms.

I really enjoyed both of these videos. In the first video I got to see the students demonstrating how they use technology and they all seemed to really enjoy it. I'm sure they love when the EDM 310 students comment on their blog and leave positive feedback. I know for a fact those little first graders have a blast playing on the Nintendo DS. I think that is such a fun way to excite kids to learn and participate in activities. Using a Nintendo or some other hand held device for educational games is definitely something I will want to do as a teacher. Also, I will for sure have a class blog where my students can post projects and past assignments for parents to see, and also do writing assignments on for others to comment on. I will admit, when I first started blogging for this class in August I absolutely hated it, but now it's really grown on me and it is something I want to continue to do for my future classrooms. Technology is a wonderful thing and s Ms. Cassidy said in her interview with Dr. Strange, "it's here to stay". So get ready fellow EDM classmates because if you want to be an effective educator, you are going to have to use it in every way possible.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Project 3 - Comments for Teachers #3

This week I was assigned to Mr. Joe Dale's blog. The post I was assigned to is entitled Let the Championships Begin. It is about the language Perfect World Championships. This is something that I have never heard of so I really enjoyed this post! I decided to go to the official website here. And then I found this video giving a quick overview on how the competition actually works!
Craig Smith (CEO) briefly explaining the World Championships
Anyways, this whole thing is pretty interesting. In Joe's blog, he says that there are over 100,000 students that participate from all over the world. And the best part is, it's all online. JOe also says that over 14 million questions were asked in 7 days in last years competition.
I left Mr. Dale a comment saying how I had never heard of such a competition until now. I let him know that I looked up information on it and told him how I loved how unique it was and thanked him for posting information about it!

Graham Davies
The next post of Mr. Jo Dale's blog I read was entitled Graham Davies R.I.P. Unfortunately this post is about the death and loss of the founder of eurocall. He lost his battle with Pseudomyxoma Peritonei (PMP), a type of cancer he was battling with for a while. This was someone that Joe Dale looked up to and was frequently in contact with asking for advice. He expresses his condolences to the family of Graham Davies and lets his readers know that if they would like to pay your respects, the Association for Language Learning has set up a tribute section on their facebook page.

I left a comment on this post expressing my condolences for his loss and everyone else's loss. I let Joe know that I did not have the pleasure of meeting or talking with Graham but that he sounded like a great man from the kind words he left about him.

C4K Summary for Month of October

For this assignment I was assigned to an 11th grade US History Research Seminar Blog. This school is a private school located in Portland, Oregon instructed by Mike Gwaltney.
float for homecoming parade
The post that I commented on was about homecoming and the process of organizing it. These students rarely do homecoming activities because they are a private school. This year however, some students wanted to change that. Some students found volunteers to do a 3 minute choreographed dance, they took younger kids and put them into a group to do pep cheers, and they made three floats to parade around the school track. My comment to the young lady who wrote the blog talked about how we are in the process of homecoming at the University. I asked the student if they elected anyone for king and queen because our elections just closed today. I also commended them on putting together all of these homecoming activities with limited time and experience with homecoming.

The next week I was assigned to a 4th grade class at North Petherton Primary school in Somerset, UK. You can see there Class Blog here.
The post I commented on had audio clips of various students reading the story titled Taking The Cat's Way Home. This was the first time the class had done this and they seemed pretty excited. I listened to Shanice's version of the story. I commented on the blog praising Shanice and the rest of the class for their hard work in writing and reading these stories. I stated that I enjoyed how Shanice used different variations in voice level to help convey the message to the audience better.

This week I read a 2nd graders blog post from a school in Birmingham. The students name was Allie. She wrote a short post about zebras and what they looked like.
zebra+ Title=
I left a comment saying how zebras were fascinating. I asked if zebras were her favorite animal and if not, what her favorite animal is. I told her my favorite animal is a giraffe because they are so tall and they're awkward with their necks.

This week we were instructed a special assignment. We had to comment on the wonderful Dr. Paige Vitulli and Dr. Susan Santolli's blog Eyes on Ireland. These two lovely ladies are currently in Ireland attending the Ireland International Conference of Education. I was assigned a particular post about the keynote speakers they got to hear speak.
The post Keynote Speakers, talked about the three keynote speakers Dr. Vitulli and Dr, Santolli heard speak. One of them was Dr. Richard Cooper, director of disability services at Harcum College in Pennsylvania. He actually owns a firm called Learning disAbilities Resources, which produces and distributes educational and motivational materials for individuals with learning differences. The next keynote speaker was Professor Cynthia Northington-Purdie, a psychologist and professor at NJ University. The last keynote speaker they heard speak was Dr. Patricia Mannix McNamara who joined the Department of Education and Professional Studies in the University of Limerick in 1999, prior to which she was a post primary teacher of English, Religion and SPHE. One of her interests are in bullying and its impact on health and well being. Which is particular important in todays society.
I left a comment stating that by the descriptions of Dr. Richard Cooper, he most likely would have been my favorite keynote speaker. I said that I would have loved to hear more about his firm that he owns as well as well as experience in guidance counseling seeing as that is what I would like to get my masters in. I expressed to Dr. Viltulli and Dr. Santolli how jealous I was that I was not in Ireland getting the chance to hear these keynote speaker talk.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Special Blog Post Assignment

Sebastian Thrun
For this special assignment we were told to read A world were grades will be left behind written by Mary Beth Marklein.

This article is about Google VP and professor, Sebastian Thrun and how he thinks education should be revolutionized. Thrun founded an education company called Udacity, where he is making his dreams about how education should work, come to life. His idea is to develop a catalog of free online courses taught by profound professors around the world. In one of the rooms at Udacity, a professor is filmed working problems and drawing figures on a white board. In another room, educators are coming up with fun new ways to get students interested in completing a math problem. Thrun believes that soon education will no longer be "one size fits all" he believe "Education will respond to you". He also believes that grades will not matter and that instruction will be free, but services might involve a fee.

I think Sebastian Thrun is up to something brilliant that could, and most likely will, change the face of education. Technology is already beginning to take over in classrooms and more and more teachers are "flipping" their classrooms. I feel like one day there will be no more face to face education, just solely online. Thrun makes a point however, about how theater never went away when film making took over. Film making is just more popular and less expensive. So I'm thinking that education would work out the same way. It would be available online for those who prefer it but you could also still go and learn with an instructor face to face. A lot of interesting ideas to take in here. I'm not sure what it means for the future of educators. I am all for technology in a classroom, but what happens when you take the classroom completely away? I think it could work but I also think it would take a lot of time to ease into it.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Blog Post # 10

PC MAC mock picture

The picture above is a cartoon by John T. Spencer.
At first this cartoon confused me, I did not get the meaning at all. But then I went to Spencer's blog to read his comments on the cartoon and found out it is a mock of the PC MAC commercials. I thought to myself, "Duh" after finding that out. I thought it was interesting that he used pencils in this cartoon. I read some more of his blog and found that a lot of his posts are about pencils and technology. I think any computer, or pencil, is fine depending on the user. I love Apple products but I prefer a PC over a Mac any day because it's more affordable. Now if anyone wants to buy me a nice new Mac then I would gladly convert over!

The next blog post of Spencer's I read was Why Were Your Kids PLaying Games? I thought this was very interesting. This post consisted of dialogue between a principal and a teacher. The principal calls the teacher in his office and asks the teacher why his kids were playing games. The teacher tries to explain that that yes they were playing games, but they were learning in the process as well. Still, the principal does not agree with this and tells him not to do it again.
First off, it angers me to think that a principal of a school would have those types of opinions. As a principal, he or she should encourage educational games in the classroom, not ban them. Playing games in the classroom can help engage students and they, more than likely, enjoy learning more. I hope I never come across a principal who discourages something so important as engaging student learning. Children want to have fun, not have their nose stuck in a book for 7 hours 5 days a week.

The next post I read is called The Con Academy. This post is a dialogue between a teacher, principal, and some guest. The principal asks the teacher to meet a special guest and the teacher agrees. The principal suggests the teacher to flip his classroom. But what the principal is asking isn't technically flipping a classroom. The teacher is obviously a little peeved and is sarcastic with his remarks back to the principal and the guest.
These dialogues Spencer posts are quite funny. Though, if this were to actually happen I find it to be more of a tragedy. This principal Spencer keeps using in his dialogue is just plain ignorant. I began to read the comments below this post and found out that this was a meme for the Khan Academy. I began to read about this academy and realized it's just online worksheets for students to do. yes it's at the student's own pace, but as I child I HATED worksheets no matter if on paper or online. They also advertise it to be completely free, however you have to pay for training. I recommend everyone to read this particular post and read about the Khan Academy and form an opinion for yourself as well.

Next I read a few posts from Scott McLeod's blog Dangerously Irrelevant.
The first post I read is called Don't Teach Your Kids This Stuff Please. WARNING: This poem is obviously sarcastic. McLeod adresses this post to teachers, parents, and administrators. He is almost begging everyone not to teach children to blog, use social media, make videos, or make a PLN because paper and pencil are going no where. He says to lock it down, block it out, and not to let kids use it because it's evil. Then at the end he says how he allows his children to use all of these tools. He asks how far ahead his children will be compared to those who do not allow their children to utilize these tools.
I think McLeod posted this to help those that are crazy, understand that the internet is a useful tool. Though I think it is important for everyone to understand that there are dangers out there on the web. I read a few of the comments left by other edm 310 students and I saw where someone said how children know more about technology than their parents do. Uhm, Scary! How are parents supposed to express to their children the dangers of the web if they don't even understand it themselves? Even my mother, who is a police officer, is a little technology illiterate. I will admit she is learning! But I would feel a lot safer if I knew that people who were in charge of protecting me knew how to handle more technology than I do. The point is, everyone should be encouraged to use and explore the internet and to utilize all of the wonderful tools. Just be cautious of all of the dangers. As far as who this man is, well, he is genius. Simple as that.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Blog Post #9

For this assignment I read two of Mr. Joe McClung's blog posts.
Header picture in Mr. McClung's blog

The first post I read was What I learned This Year 2012-2011. This particular year was a bunch of firsts for Mr. McClung. It was his first year teaching at the same school for more than a year, being head coach, and teaching a computer applications class. McClung talked a little about putting the students first instead of worrying about what others think of you and getting sidetracked from the students. He is a people pleaser and is always worried about pleasing the administration instead of his students. He also talked about not letting others ruin your excitement. McClung was always excited about the professional development sessions because he liked new ideas. He quickly found out that many others did not feel the same way. He said other teachers would sit in the back ad talk under their breath about not liking the new ideas and ignoring the whole session. Another point he hits on is not being afraid to be an outsider. McClung is never one to socialize with other teachers, instead he socializes with his students because they are what's most important. In his post, McClung also talks about not touching the keyboard. Which means not to do a students work for them. He says that when a student needs help, it can be easier for the teacher to just finish the work for them because it will turn out nicer. Though as teachers, we can not do this or else the students will not learn. The last thing he talks about in this post is about not allowing yourself to get comfortable. He pushes himself daily to move forward with his teaching. McClung says he does not want to get into a routine and become boring.

The next post of his I read was What I Learned This Year - Volume 4. In this blog post Mr. McClung reflects on his fourth year of teaching. He says he did not learn as much as he thought he did, though he shared two major points that stuck out to him.
The first was about not letting the approval of your peers affect you, something he also hit on in the previous post that I read. In the previous post he talked about how he never worried what others thought. Though in this post, he admits to letting the thoughts of his fellow co-workers bother him. He said it changed his mood completely and that it was not until the end of the year that he coped with it. McClung states that he has gotten to where he is in his career by following one rule. Are the kids having fun?
The next point he hits on in this post is about challenging yourself. He admits that this past year he has gotten comfortable and lazy because this was his third year in a row teaching the same subject at the same school. This was something he also talked about in the previous post that I read. In the previous post he talks about making sure that teachers do not get comfortable, however this year, he did. Luckily for him, he was offered to teach a new subject and a new grade level. McClung says that this opportunity coud not have come at a better time.

I really enjoyed this post just as I did with the other one that I read of his. I find it funny that the first post I read was him preaching about all of the things that we should not do as teachers such as letting your co-workers thoughts about you affect you, and not getting comfortable. Then in the last post I read, he admits to falling victim to both of those things. I think this is a great example that even teachers are not perfect and that we mess up from time to time. I'm glad that he realized his mistakes though, and is taking action to fix them. Mr. McClung's main interest is the students and making sure that they are enjoying his class. I really admire that about him because I feel that some teachers do not have the students in their best interest. I will strive to be like the teacher Mr. McClung is.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Project # 10- PLN

First Summary
I decided to go with the site Symbaloo. I made a page with all of the networks that I usually use and then I added some to use for this class. Then I found this awesome PLN that was already made with 24 useful links for teachers! I made sure to save that and add it to my homepage to use for future references. This whole PLN thing is very new to me so it's going to take time to develop it but I really like the layout and how everything is all on one page.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Blog Post #8

Richard Miller: This is How we Dream
computer connected to world
In Part one, Miller talks about how writing has been changed by the web. He grew up, like most of us, in a world of reading, writing, and publishing in print. Now things like that are all done in print, but are available on the web as well. Miller also discusses how to change teaching from reading and writing, to listening and watching. In one of his classes he taught he had students compose a print, sound, and visual document using materials available on the internet.
In Part two, Miller talks about how we, as educators, need to share our ideas with everyone via the internet. He talks about iTunes U and how you can listen to lectures from various college professors. Miller also tells us that by publishing on the web, people can have access to something faster. Instead of waiting 2 years for something to be edited and printed, we can see it almost immediately if posted on the internet. At the end, Miller stresses how we need to be inspired to move forward with technology and continue with this concept.
I thought these videos were fairly interesting. I will admit, it is sometimes hard and confusing using only technology to teach students. I am so used to reading and writing on print and only sometimes using the internet for things. However, I am prepared to continue learning about technology and how I can use it in the classroom to make learning more engaging for students. I realize this method is important and is taking over whether we like it or not. Thankfully getting help from professionals and fellow peers is easier than ever because I'm sure many of us will need all of the help we can get.

Carly Pugh's Blog Post # 12
Apparently we get to create our own blog post assignment in the future! Reading Carly's blog gave me so many ideas, I can hardly wait to get started on post # 12 now.
Carly Pugh is witty, motivated, and genius. Her blog post assignment that she created instructed us to create our own youtube playlist of videos about our philosophies as teachers. She gave 10 topics to chose from but only 5 was required. Some of those topics included: describe the kind of teacher you would like to be, tips on classroom management, describe what a good teacher is and what a bad teacher is, and ways to improve modern education. Not only did she go above and beyond with creating this assignment, she also did the assignment and created her own youtube playlist. I'm sharing it with everyone because a lot of these are so useful and I want to remember where I put all of these videos so that I can refer back to them in the future!
Carly Pugh's Youtube PLaylist

EDM 301 is Different
The video The Chipper Series , is about a college student at south named Chipper. She begins in Dr. Strange's EDM 310 class and complains about his methods of teaching and never turns her work in on time. She decides to drop out of school and start her own pilot school. When that doesn't work out, she gets a job as a teacher but later gets fired for not showing up. Chipper continues trying out other jobs but ends up either quitting or getting fired because it is too much work for her. At the end, it finally hits Chipper that if she wants to succeed in life she has to do her work right and be on time. She decides to go back to South Alabama and finish her degree. All of her time was wasted when she could have already graduated and had a job if she would have taken responsibility and not give up.
The Video EDM for Dummies (obviously fake) featured students enrolled in EDM 310 that were driven crazy because they did not understand how to complete the assignments. Luckily, they purchased the book EDM for Dummies. This book had many tutorials for Skype, Blogger, Delicious, Twitter, and many more sites required for the class. At the end of the video the students were excited about doing their EDM assignments.
After seeing these videos, I am excited about making my own. I think making a video including tips on how to survive EDM would be good. I would also like to make a video that actually included tutorials of the essential tools needed for this class such as Blogger, Twitter, and Google Docs.

Learn to Change, Change to Learn
wordle of 21st century learning
This video is about learning to change schools to accommodate the 21st century student. The way students really remember and truly learn something is through technology. They respond to assignments better if technology is incorperated into the lesson in some way. Today, cell phones, computers, internet, and social media is the center of children's lives.
I completely agree with the arguments that are made in this video. As educators, we need to accept that and use it to not just ours, but the students benefit as well. As hard as it may be to learn new ways, it is our job to get over it because it is what is best for the future and for the students that we teach.

Scavenger Hunt 2.0
This activity was suggested by a former EDM student, Justin Commetti. Visit hisBlog Post # 12 and watch the video he has provided.
I created a comic with Make Believe Comix
my comic

Next I found a video tool called Animoto
This tool is easy as 1-2-3! You just choose photos you want to include in your video. Then choose some music that you want played in the back ground of your video. Finally, you can easily share your video in an email, through facebook, or on youtube! There are plenty of different video styles that you can choose such as: an autumn theme, a firework theme, and even a holiday theme. If you download the Pro version, it comes with many samples of music that you can use. This video tool is so simple, even a first time movie maker could use it.
Lastly, I found a great polling tool calledPoll Everywhere that allows you to text a code for your answer. The results are kept on the website under your profile. I encourage everyone to participate

Project 3- Comments for Teachers # 2

For this assignment I read Ms. Jennifer Brokofsky's blog. Her post was titled "Creating a Community of Mathematicians". It was about the month of September being a month of new beginnings and community building for teachers. She talked about building a community of mathematicians and gave a technique on how to do so in her classroom. Her idea was to constructing an anchor chart with students asking the question "What does a mathematician do?" She shared a list and picture of the anchor chart.
I left a comment agreeing with her statement she made about September being a month of new beginnings for teachers. I let her know that I loved the fact that she is taking on the task of involving the community full force. I ended by saying that it is vital to start off the new school year strong with a plan to succeed.

picture of problem solving stages
This particular post I commented on of Ms. Brokofky's blog was entitled "Inquiry in Mathematics". She talked about 4 important stages in the inquiry/problem solving process. The first stage is to understand the problem. If a student does not first understand what is being asked then they will fail to solve the problem correctly. The second stage is to make a plan. The student must think of a plan of attack to solve the problem. Some examples were given such as: using a model, drawing a picture, looking for a pattern, and working backwards. The third stage is to carry out the plan. Ms. Brokofsky quoted Nike and said "just do it". The final stage is to look back. The student must look over how he or she solved the problem to make sure it is right and it makes sense.
My comment to her was about expressing my love/hate relationship that I had with mathematics. I told her that my problem while in school was the first stage of understanding the problem that was being asked. I told her that I believed that the first and last stage in the problem solving process was the most important because you must understand the problem to attack it and you must check your answer to be sure you got it right.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Blog Post # 7

 A picture of connectivism
Wendy Drexler's Networked Student

This video is about the concept of connectivism. This is a learning process that occurs online and through various networking sites. The student in this video is learning about American Phycology and uses the networking sites he learned about in class to find reliable learning sources. When he finds information, he can share it with other classmates in other networking sites.
The teacher in the video is not your everyday lecturing teacher. She is present to help guide the students in their online journey by helping them if they get stuck, differentiating between reliable and non-reliable sources, and shows how to communicate properly and respectfully to others over the internet. The teacher is also the one who presents the idea of connectivism and how to properly use this learning technique.
The internet is such a powerful tool for students in this day and age. I think it is vital that teachers incorporate the internet and various networking sites to students so that they can see that there are plenty of other ways to learn and to help strengthen the learning process. The student uses the internet to do everything for his class. He uses google scholar to find reliable resources, he posts those resources on to a bookmarking site to share with others, and he listens to various professors' lectures through iTunes. I think the concept of connectivism is something that every teacher can easily use in their classrooms.

Welcome to my PLE
an image of Symbaloo, a site used for a PLE
This video is of a 7th grade science student's Personal Learning Environment. She has her page set up with all of her personal and school resources in one place. She uses all sorts of sites on the internet to do research, share her findings, and communicate with other peers or professionals. She is extremely knowledgeable about her PLE and it's obvious that she enjoys this way of learning. She has the freedom to do her work whenever and wherever and it helps her become responsible and a self learner.
My Personal Learning Network is nowhere near as in depth as hers is. I hope that one day mine is as organized and useful like the one in the video. These tools are wonderful for not only students, but more importantly the educators teaching the students. Working on my PLN to help make it more useful and engaging for me is something I need to work on.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Blog Post #6

randy Pausch
Randy Pausch Last Lecture: Achieving Your Childhood Dreams
I want to start this blog post off with my thoughts and reaction to this video first, rather than last. This man is like no other. Randy has cancer and I would have not known if he didn’t say something about it in the beginning of his lecture. He never once played the “pity” card and he joked about his sickness a few time as well. I do not know many people with cancer who joke about it. I thought he was an excellent speaker and what got me the most was towards the end of his lecture when he sang happy birthday for his wife and he ended the entire lecture by stating the lecture was not for the people attending, but for his kids.

I found his teaching methods he used at Carnegie Mellon University quite interesting. My personal favorite was the “head fake”. It is almost tricking a child to learn something else that they do not expect. The example Randy used in his lecture was football. Parents do not put their children in football to actually play the sport; they do it so the children can learn life lessons and skills. The child thinks he or she is learning football, but really, they are learning how to be a team player, how to communicate with others, how to work together, etc. I think this technique is brilliant and is used more often than people realize. Teachers can use this in the classroom multiple times. One idea that pops into my head is for a group project. The child thinks they are only learning what the project requires, but in reality, they are learning much more.

I also found his technique of not using books and only technology in his classroom extremely relevant to this class and the future. Students seem to learn more when learning from the teacher rather than the book. Students also have more fun learning this way as well. Book work can get repetitive and old quite fast, so staying away from that technique is best. Instead of finding busy work for students to do in a textbook, engage them with an activity that is both fun and educational.

One thing I noticed was that Randy’s entire class was based on projects. Projects are a fun way for students to learn which is why I think he based his class on this. He also mentioned it was another “head fake”. I’m not sure I would want to base my entire class on projects. Although, I will try to assign as many projects into my class to show that learning can be fun.

The last technique that stuck out to me was that he learned from his students. Randy did not know what to expect in the first few years of his teaching so he let the students take the reins with the projects that he assigned. He learned many things including ideas for projects for future students. I think everyone should open up to the idea of allowing the students to teach the teachers. I cannot wait to see all of the interesting things that my future students will teach me.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Time Toast Timeline

C4K Summary for Month September

Pehso was the name of the first child I was assigned. He is in the 5th grade and is in Miss Quano's Class. Pehso's post was a short video about Usain Bolt. I left a comment stating that I had really enjoyed the video and that I had no clue that Usain had won 6 gold Medals. I also let Pehso know that he did a wonderful job on creating his video.
For this week, I had a student named, Ana. She wrote a short story entitled Sunny Day. I was so impressed with her use of quotation marks for the dialogue! I made sure to tell her that and asked if the drawing included at the top of her post was something she drew herself.
For the last student, I left a comment on jacmor954's Blog. He is a 4th grade student in Hamburg, NY. His post was a short story about Titanium Guy and Dynamite Man. I left a comment stating that i like how he left the reader wanting more in the end and how I loved how he compared one of the characters to a roadrunner catching it's prey.
Child blogging

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Blog Post # 5

The iSchool Initiative
iSchool Initiative
For this blog post assignment, I watched The iSchool Initiative by Travis Allen. First off, I thought it was amazing that a seventeen year old high school student thought about this and put together an outstanding video. His arguments were well thought out and could easily be obtained. I never realized how many useful apps were available for students through the iTunes application store. Travis mentioned about using the iSchool to save money for students and the school system in general. However, the school system would have to purchase all of these along with the cost of all of the applications. Yes it would save money in the long run, which is what we need, but the cost in the beginning would be outrageous.
Today, some schools have already purchased iPads for students to use for homework and such. Although, I do not think they are being used in place of textbooks, paper, pencils, and so on. Though, I imagine that this will change fairly soon and students will use their iPads in the classroom for everything. I am completely on board with this idea and I hope every school will be able to use this type of technology in their school.
Virtual Choir
Oh, I absolutely loved this video,Eric Whitacre's Virtual Choir - 'Lux Aurumque' ! I found it amazing that these people were from all over and had never met each other before. Imagine all of the different things someone could do with using the internet in this way. Business men and women can make conference calls with each other, meeting with multiple people at once. Teachers can collaborate with other teacher all over the world. Students can meet other students from around the world and talk about each other culture. There are tons of other ways to do with using the internet in this way and as future teachers, we should all try and incorporate this in our classrooms.
Teaching in the 21st Century
The video, Teaching in the 21st Century , is something all educators should watch. There is an information overload and it can sometimes be difficult to find a reliable source on the internet. The only thing my teachers ever really drilled in my head was to not use Wikipedia as a source for papers and such. I think it is our job as teachers to talk to our students and help them understand what a reliable source is, and what is not. We also need to help them with things like paraphrasing and giving credit to those sources that they do use. There is so much to learn and teach about using the internet and it is our job to do so. I think this would be a great lesson to spend time on before a research paper or project is assigned.
Flipping the Classroom
If you haven't already, watch some videos about flipping a classroom. My personal favorite was Flipping the Classroom - 4th Grade STEM This idea is genius! I wish all of my teachers did this when I was in grade school. This is something I would definitely consider doing in my future classroom. However, this new approach might take some time for both the teachers and students to adjust to. Though, I think this new approach is worth it and should be tried out by all teachers. It took me a few seconds to understand the concept but it's obvious. The students do the learning of new lessons at home, and would essentially to their homework in the classroom, so the teacher can assist with questions the next day.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Blog Post #4

Kids practicing podcasting
Langwitches 1st Graders Create Their Own Read-Along Adiobook
I will admit, I chose this one because it was the first. However, I'm glad I did! I never thought about having a child, especially a first grader, create their own version of a script to a book and make a podcast. I thought the idea of printing out the script for the others to follow was brilliant! It allowed the children to follow along and practice reading while listening to another child speak.
The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom
I had never heard of podcasting until this assignment. I wish this was popular when I was in school because there are many benefits to using this technology in the classroom. This video hits on all of the main benefits and even shows examples using real life situations. For example, when a child is sick, a teacher can record the lessons so the sick student does not fall behind. I know I will take advantage of that feature when I become a teacher. As a child, I hated missing school because trying to make everything up was a huge pain.
This post on Langwitches blog is about a lesson that helped students learn and comprehend Hebrew. The students learned about the story of Purim and had to write a script and record them telling parts of the story in Hebrew. The students worked together in recording and editing the podcast. This lesson really seemed to get the students excited to learn a new language. This is something I would love to use for learning new vocabulary units.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Comments for Teachers - Project #3

Are You a Steward of Time? -Jeff Delp
In this blog post, Mr. Delp touched on the fact that much time is wasted during faculty meetings at work. Delp noticed that he, and many other administrators, were taking time away from teachers by pulling them away from their work and talking to them about pointless subjects that could be discussed some other time, in another way. He created a blog for all of his teachers and faculty to communicate together and share news and ideas with each other. This was also a way for him, as the principal, to share news worthy information about the school or community to his teachers with out taking more time away and calling a faculty meeting. Delp also sent out regular running google documents out to his staff for daily reminders and announcements. He encourages others to use these methods and to see if they help save time.
I left Mr. Jeff Delp a comment commending him for changing his school for the better and trying to save time. I stated that teachers already have a tough time finding enough time in the day to teach lessons to students and take care of everyday classroom chores. Finding ways to get announcements and other news to teachers in a more efficient way is extremely important.

Recognize The Big Rocks -Jeff Delp
 A picture of rocks and pebbles
In this post, Delp talked about his struggles separating the "big rocks" from the "pebbles" as a principal. He hits on four main areas where he seems to be having troubles. The first, Effective relationships. Delp says that it is necessary, for those who want to improve schools, to communicate and keep strong connections with one another to effectively improve things. Next, Instructional leadership. He believes that his role as principal is a vital role and must not be taken lightly. Delp makes a comment stating that he is always trying to push forward and keep up with professional learning. Thirdly, Climate and Environment. He states that even though teachers and staff can not control the things that happen around us, they need to be able to work together and learn how to stop negativity from spreading around the entire campus. Last but not least, Balance, the most important. Delp states that his biggest trouble is finding balance with his work and being able to separate those big rocks from the pebbles.
I commented on this post saying that I, too, had troubles separating the big rocks from the pebbles. I thanked him for all of his hard work and that I love reading about a principal working their hardest to improve a school.