Saturday, December 7, 2013

Blog Assignment #16 Final Reflection

Start and Finish line
Looking Back

This has been a very interesting semester in EDM310, I was very intimidated at first because of the amount of work that was required for this course. However, after taking the time to really learn about the technologies used and the many different programs my whole mind set on technology in the classroom has changed.

For this final blog post, Dr.Strange has asked us to look back at our first post written in EDM310. This post required us to think about what our dream school would look like and how we would teach our students. In this original post I was very general in terms of explaining how I plan on teaching my students. I was not aware of the many different devices and programs available to me as a teacher. When I wrote this original post, I believed that a more hands on approach would be the best form of education for my students. Now, after completing EDM310 I still believe in a hands on approach at teaching, but I now believe that the different technologies available to me as a teacher should be used as much as possible.


Google Apps
In the beginning of this class, I highly underestimated the affect technology could have on a students education. I have come to know that there are many different tools I can use to enhance my students learning. During EDM310, I learned about google and the many uses inside of the site. Before I had only used google as a search engine. Now I know that Google can be used for storing documents, sharing documents,creating sites, and even creating presentations. During my years in school, whenever we had a presentation we always had to use powerpoint and not every computer had powerpoint. Also, you had to save the powerpoint on a flash drive if you planned on working on more than one computer. With google docs, it is free to create a presentation with as many slides as you wish. The presentation can be viewed from any computer and does not require a flash drive.

Another tool I found useful in EDM310 was Prezi, These are interactive presentations that are again free to use. These presentations can be edited on any computer and can be easily shared on blogs. When I came into EDM310 and DR.Strange started talking about blogging and using all of these different tools with elementary students I thought he was out of his mind. My thought was, "What young elementary student could use a computer let alone these programs that I was struggling to use myself". However, after taking the time to learn how to use these tools and reading the students blogs I now realize how technology literate todays kids are. I have even begun to notice with my own sister, who went to Gulf Shores elementary when the mac book program began, how technology literate she is.

Children's interactive iPad game
Another tool that I was not aware could be used in the classroom in so many ways is the iPad. I do not personally have an iPad so I was not aware of all of the different educational purposes it could be used for. The iPads can be used to create podcasts and videos as well as access the internet and allow students to view sites like iCurio and DiscoveryEd. In our final group assignment we created and iBook that had all of our work for this semester on it. While creating this book I learned all about the iBook software and how to use it. This would be a great learning tool to use to enhance my students learning and allow them to have a hands on and interactive text to read and explore. Many textbooks offer a digital version that comes with interactive games and diagrams for the students to view.

Final Reflection

With EDM310 coming to a close, I do not see this as the end! I see this as the beginning to the career I have always wanted. Having a new outlook on teaching and technology in the classroom I plan to use every type of technology offered. I plan on using google and the many aspects of it, also using computers and the SMARTBoard to the fullest. I am so excited to become a teacher and to continue to learn and grow in my use of the different technologies I learned about in EDM310.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Blog Assignment #15

Assistive Technologies

Student using the Mountbatton
With today’s technologies helping special needs students achieve so much more than in the past. The assistive technologies allow students with disabilities to participate in the learning activities and curriculum. In the video Assistive Technologies for Vision and Hearing impaired Children we see students learning using assistive technologies. The students read a book that uses words like “Zoom” to describe the sound a boat makes. This allows hearing impaired students to imagine what a boat really sounds like. We also see a blind student reading a book written in Braille. These are only two of the more simple assistive technologies available. These simple tools allow students to interact with their classmates and learning environment. With the ever advancing technology world we as teachers should always stay knowledgeable on the tools available to us. Also to ensure that the student is receiving the best possible learning experience a thorough assessment of the student’s abilities should be done to know where they are struggling.

The video about the MountBatton, we learn about a system that is used to help enhance learning for the visually impaired. This system allows students to write Braille and hear what they are writing as they are typing it. This allows students to learn Braille while also staying involved in the classroom discussions and group work. Another way to enhance a student that has learning disabilities to participate in class is to teach the other students how to work with the student. For example, a visually impaired student may be more willing to participate in peer reviews if they know their paper will be read by a peer and not the teacher. So teaching the other students how to read basic Braille may help strengthen the learning environment. When planning lesson plans involving these assistive tools it is important to combine multiple tools to allow the student a single tool will not meet all the needs of your student. While researching assistive tools we found the website EnablingDevices which is a website that sells devices for all disabilities. This site is a very good site to have. It shows you what tools are out there and what tools you could need for your students with disabilities. The most important aspect of helping a student with disabilities achieve their goal is to work together, with the students parents and other administrators to guarantee that your student is achieving their goals.

Teaching mathematics

Learning mathematics can be tough for anyone, but for blind students, it can be a challenging task, in learning math. In the video, Teaching Math to the Blind Professor Art Karshmer, who is a professor at University of San Francisco School of Management, introduces a tool he has created for blind students. This tool uses blocks and a grid. His device lays out simple math problems to more advanced math problems using small blocks. On the front, there is braille and visible numbers. In the video, he demonstrates that the blind student will use a barcode scanner, on the blocks. The device reads the number back to the student. The student places the block on the grid to set up the math problem. The math problem is laid out on the touch bed. Professor Art Karshmer shows how the problem is laid out the way a sighted person would put it on paper. A blind person can rub their finger across the problem and read it. Now, a blind student is able to work on a two-dimensional problem. By using this program, it will help educate young blind students. It can cover areas like: basic Math and the beginning Algebra.

Student using an iPad
After watching Professor Art Karshmer video, we did further research on math tools for blind students. We found information on a blind woman named Sheila Schneider. She majored in sculpture at the School of Art Design. Under the supervision of Deana McDonagh, a professor of Industrial Design. Sheila Schneider has created six small hand held sculptures that have mathematical equations written in Braille. The math equations will be written in Nemeth Code, a form of Braille used with math and scientific symbols. This tool will be used to help students with visual impairments that will help them to learn math.It is great that there are assistive technology available for the blind. In the video, iPad usage for the blind Wesley Majerus who is an Access Specialist for the National Federation for the Blind. In the video, Mr. Majerus demonstrations how blind people can use different apps with an iPad. The iPad has a voiceover that tells him, which programs he is opening. The voiceover helps him to navigate around the home screen. There is an app that can read a book aloud. He expresses that it is very liberating to buy and read books. This tool, is a great assistive technology device that can help blind people.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Blog Assignment #14

Blog Post 14 teacher blogs

Not every one wants to teach the same grade or subject. Find a teacher blog for the grade and subject you plan to teach and write about 3 useful things you found on their blog. The blog you use cannot be one that you have been assigned in your C4T assignments.

I really enjoy working with 4th graders so I chose a 4th grade teacher. She goes by Farley and her blog is title Oh' Boy 4th Grade.
In this blog Farley writes about all school related things including strategies that work for her as a 4th grade teacher. The portion of her blog that I found most useful was the section she titled creations. In this section Farley includes items that she has created that she found useful in her classroom. These items include the words to the pledge done in a creative background, to do lists that are broken down and made simple for students to use, inspirational quote posters, and printable activities for students to do.

On her blog Farley also includes a section titled teacher block party, this section is broken don by grade level and in each grade level she includes links to other teacher blogs of that grade level. This section is great because you can find other teachers in the grade level you teach and communicate and find ideas through the blogs. In her posts Farley's topics range from classroom activities to her personal children and experiences. She also includes products that she has created or found to be useful in the classroom. One of the more recent products he posted about was a thanksgiving themed game that helps students review skills while having fun with thanksgiving.

Final Report PLN Project #2

My PLN Before Shot

For my PLN I have continued using Symbaloo. I found that I really enjoy having Symbaloo as my home page because it makes going to my saved pages much easier because I can just click a button. On my PLN Symbaloo page I started out with only a few links to some educational sites and the blogs I followed for EDM310. Now after working on my PLN for a few months now, I have added many educational sites and even blogs that I have come across while working on my lesson plans and other assignments. My PLN is much more full than it was the last time I reported on it and there is far to much to explain every tile.

A few of the tiles I have added are:

I have added blog tiles for David Truss, Lisa Thurmann, and a blog I found on my own called E is for Explore created by Erin Bittman. I have also added a link to the student blog site EDUBlogs so that I can find it n the future.

Since my last report I have added tiles to many of the sites that we have used in EDM310 but also a few that I have found useful. These sites include TeacherLED, SMARTExchange, and Learn360. These sites are very useful when creatng lesson plans using interactive white boards.

My PLN After Shot

C4T #4

Post #1

Lisa Thumman
The fourth teacher I was assigned was Lisa Thumman, her blog is Thumann Resources. Lisa works with educators to improve teaching with technology. The post I commented on was about state common cores, and how she worked with the School for Global Education and Innovation at Kean University to form the Common Core Communities of Practice. These communities will focus on improving practices and they will provide a collaborative onsite and virtual work space for teachers. Teachers will be able to connect and discuss instructional practices and how to enhance learning for students.

Post #2

In this next post titled 20 Percent Time. Lisa discusses her findings on how teachers are implementing google's 20% Time. She gives examples on how certain teachers are using the 20 % Time to have their students choose a project and complete over a period of time and having them document there work as they progress. One example that Lisa gave I really enjoyed reading about was the organization that Rory Fundora's daughter Mallory created. This was not designed with the 20% Time project in mind, but on her own she decided to raise money to sponsor two students. Not only was she able to surpass her goal but she is now managing countless resources and raising much more money than she ever thought possible. I commented on her post and said how excited I was about the idea of 20% Time in the classroom. I really enjoy community service so I plan to use the 20% Time to have my students enhance their learning by helping others.

Google's 20% Time Logo

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Blog assignment #13

To This Day...For the bullied and the beautiful

still from Shane Koyczan's video
In this video Shane Koyczan talks about how we are given titles and then asked what we wanted to be when we grow up. Shane talks about his experience as a kid and how he was asked what he wanted to be and then as he said what he wanted to be he was told what not to be. He was being told to accept the identity that others would give him, because they were "silly" in the eyes of others. Shane talks about his experience of becoming a bully due to the way society expected him to become. In this video Shane recites his poem "To This Day" accompanied by a video that went right along with his poem. This poem was inspirational and absolutely true. This poem brings to life the damages that are done daily from bullying and the affects of those we trust simply saying "kids will be cruel" and never actually doing anything about the bullying. This poem is one that could be used over and over again to really show the affects of bullying with words and pictures. Shane's poem is humorous and haunting but does a wonderful job bringing forward the ever growing problem of bullying.

Written by: Jacquelyne Mckiernan

A girl who demanded school

is an amazing and empowering video to watch. When she was five years old, she found out she was engaged to be married. Her mother was denied an education. So, she wanted her children to receive an education. Her father was a policeman. Her father was hardly ever around. When her father returned things changed. Her mother grew crops, took care of the cows and goats. Her father would sell the cows, and went drinking, with his friends. Since, her mother was a woman, women could not own property. So, her father got everything by default. If her mother, ever questioned her father. She would be beaten and abused. In her county, there is a rite of passage ceremony for young girls. Kakenya Ntaiya made a deal with her father; she would undergo the rite of passage female circumcision, if he would let her finish high school. Kakenya describes the horror of the circumcision ritual, at thirteen. She explains, that many girls die from this mutilation. This was very heartbreaking to hear, that so many girls are going through this. After her circumcision, she went to high school. It was very heartbreaking to hear this story.

After finishing high school, Kakenya wants to further her education. Kakenya meets a young man, from her village who has been to a University in America. He has nice clothes, shoes and is very happy. She applied and was accepted ,at a college, in Virginia. Her whole village, supported her trip to America. She made a promise to the men who sponsored her trip, that she would come back and help her village. While she was in America, she learns that it is illegal, how her mother, other women and herself were treated. She keeps her promise and works with village elders to build a school for girls, in Kenya. This school has saved 125 girls from being mutilated, beaten and being married at 12 . With a college education, she returned to her village and negotiated for a school to be built for girls. It was amazing, seeing this one woman’s strength and determination to make a better place for girls, in her country.
Written by: Shernaye James

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

C4K Summary for November

Rain Forest from Crusader's story
My first student for November is in Mr.Mark's grade 6 class at Pt. England School in Auckland, New Zealand. The writing assignment was to write a narrative that was based in the rain forest. Crusader's story was very creative and very well written. He was very descriptive on how the rain forest looked and how he felt. Crusader did a great job describing how he was attacked by an Anaconda and how he called for help and was saved by James. I commented on this post and told him how creative his post was and that he did a very good job describing the rain forest.

Haley Jean
Haley Jean's painting
For my final C4K I was assigned Haley Jean, a student in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada. Haley is a six year old in Ms.Cassidy's class. The assignment was to choose a medium and convey an emotion of their choosing. For her assignment Haley chose to convey Happiness using paint. Haley’s post was titled Colours and feelings. Haley's painting was beautiful and easily conveyed happiness with her bright pinks and purples she used in her painting. In my comment to Haley I told her how beautiful her painting was and how I was able to recognize that she was conveying Happiness as her emotion.

SMARTBoard Project # 12 Part B

For our SMARTBoard project #12 we used our collaborative lesson plan on Hurricanes. We chose our lesson from day 3 about Hurricane Safety to create our activity for. In this presentation we show two different activities involving Hurricane safety. The first activity is about a Hurricane Safety Kit and what items you should have in the kit. The second activity is deciding what would be safe to have or do during a hurricane and what would not be safe.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Project #15 Lesson Plan #3

I have created a site for my personal lesson plans title My EDM310 Lesson Plans. I found using a site to be easier to keep my information organized. My second personal lesson plan is centered around Mardi Gras and the history of Mardi Gras in Alabama. In my lesson plan I have also included small lessons on recycling and measuring geometric shapes. The lesson plan is titled Celebrating Mardi Gras!

Blog assignment # 12

Changing Educational Paradigms

Ken Robinson
In the video Changing Education Paradigms, Ken Robinson talks about the changes being made around the world in public education. He explains how there are two reasons for these changes. The first being economics and the second being cultural. He asks how we educate our children to take our place in the economy. He also asks how we educate our children so that they have a source of cultural identity. He starts his explanation by saying we are trying to meet the future by doing what they did in the past. I really agree with this quote, and think it is a very strong and representational quote of today’s society. This type of thinking is alienating many kids who do not understand why they need to be in school, because the education system was created for a different generation.

Robinson believes there are two types of education abilities which are economic and intellectual. The academic are considered the smart people who go on to get higher education degrees and the intellectual are the non-smart people, who struggled in school or could not afford to go on to get higher education and who are judged for it. Robinson states how he thinks this has caused chaos. Robinson goes on to say that the non-smart people have had to suffer the ADHD “epidemic.” He believes that we are penalizing our students with drugs because they are distracted by all the technologies of today. He states how we are getting our children through education by anaesthetizing them, or deadening their senses. I really liked what Robinson says when he states that we “should not be putting our students to sleep, we should be waking them up.” This is a great statement, because many students are bored and uninterested in school today.

Robinson explains how school’s today are similar to a factory line, and if we want our students to succeed we need to change from the factory line mentality. Robinson ends his lecture talking about divergent learning and shows a study that was done on a group of students starting in kindergarten through 9th or 10th grade. This study showed how the students’ ability for divergent thinking or creativity deteriorates as the students grow and go through school. He explains how the students’ have gone through years of school being told there is only one answer and that collaboration is bad. Robinson ends saying that in order to change the way our students learn we must think differently about human capacity and not split education into sections. I really liked the final quote he uses “Great learning happens in groups.” This quote goes right along with project based learning, and collaboration in groups.
Written by: Jacquelyne Mckiernan

The Importance of Creativity

I really enjoyed watching Sir Ken Robinson’s video titled, The Importance of Creativity. Sir Ken Robinson talk is about why creativity is important. He is very funny and engaging. He started his speech by saying that students starting kindergarten this year will retire in 2065. Robinson explains that, we do not know what the world would look like the in next five years, but we are to educate and prepare students for the future. He shares that creativity should be treated the same as literacy. He had a great quote, “If you are not prepared to be wrong you will never come up with anything original.” He speaks about today in education; we are stigmatizing mistakes. In the education system, a mistake is the worst thing you can do. Robinson explains, that the education system has the same hierarchy of subjects, Mathematics and Languages, Humanities and then the Arts. Under the Arts, there is another hierarchy Art and Music are given a higher status than Drama and Dance. In schools, there is not a class that teaches dance everyday to students, like Math is taught to students. During his talk, Mr. Robinson included a quote from Picasso, “ All children are born artists, the problem is to remain an artist as we grow up.” Robinson says that educator’s task is to educate the whole being so, that they can face the future.

I really liked Sir Ken Robinson’s story of Gillian, who became a dancer because ADHD had not been invented yet. The school wrote her parents because they thought she had a learning disability. Gillian went to see a specialist. The specialist turned the radio on, and the girl began to dance. She was a dancer. The specialist recommendation was to take her to a dance school. It turned out that he was right. She found other people just like her; people who could not sit still. She became a ballet dancer and a professional choreographer. Today, in schools too many children are mislabeled. I really enjoyed watching Sir Ken Robinson’s video. I learned that the arts should be held in the same hierarchy of content areas. It is important to create an education system that nurtures creativity not destroy it.
Written by:Shernaye James

How to Escape Educations Death valley

In the video, How to escape education’s death valley Ken Robinson talks about . He makes a comment that who ever thought of the title “No child left behind” understood irony because the program left millions of children behind. The United States spends more on education that other countries but yet still has a 60% dropout rate. He believes that America is going in the wrong direction. He talks about 3 principles for education. The first is that humans are naturally different and diverse. He talks about how no two kids are alike. He goes on to say that 10% of children in America are diagnosed with some time of ADD. He says that most children are not suffering from a physiological condition, they are suffering from childhood. Children learn best when the curriculum is broad and can celebrate their different talents that just one. The second priciple is curiosity. When a child’s curiosity is sparked, they will go and learn themselves with no push. He goes on and says that children are natural learners. Curiosity is the engine in education. He says that the main point of education is learning. He talks about how you can be doing something but not be engaged in it. He applies that theory to teachers. Someone can be participating in the act teaching but no real teaching going on. The third principle is the human life is creative. We create our own lives. One of the points of education is to awake the power of creativity. He talks about how Finland has high test scores and such. He says that the reason they do is because they individualize teaching and learning. By doing this, they don’t have a dropout rate. They realize that you have to spark student interest and support the teachers. He says that education is not in the government, it’s in the classroom. Teachers know what needs to be done. Education is a human system not a mechanical one. The schools should not be command and control, but should be climate control. If you change the climate or atmosphere, possibilities are endless.

Written by:Savanah Moore

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Project # 12 A Using the SMART Board

In this video I demonstrate how to do the basic functions on a SMART Board.

Project # 10 Interview

For this project I Interviewed Nicole Godbold, she is the coordinator for the computer program for k-6 at Gulf Shores. She loves the use of technology in the classroom and was the perfect fit for this interview.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Blog Assignment #11

BLOG in quote bubbles
Little Kids, Big Potential
The students in the video Little kids, Big potential are from Moose Jaw, Canada. These students are first grader's in Ms.Cassidy's class who are able to blog, and search the internet on their own. The student's love their blogs because they get to read the comments that people from all over leave for them. In this video, the students show that they know the rules of blogging by saying them out loud to the camera. The student's explain how they know how to use their teacher's website, and that they are able to access their blogs outside of school.Ms. Cassidy's first grade class, is a great example of a project based learning environment. These students are able to read and write on blogs, use their nintendo DS, and create WIKI's.

Skype Interview with Ms. Casssidy
Ms. Cassidy began using computers 10 years ago when her class was given five computers. These computers were only allowed internet access, she could not download any programs to them. The computers started out as a simple center time, but Ms.Cassidy wanted to use them for more. She began to look into other ways to use the computers and found blogging and web pages. Ms. Cassidy starts her students out slow, she explains that it usually takes her six year olds the whole year to fully understand the computers. The administrator at Ms. Cassidy's school is not interested in the growing use of technology, but she is able to continue because of the technology coordinator who helps Ms. Cassidy incorporate more technology into her classroom. Before her student's are able to use the internet, Ms. Cassidy sends home a permission slip. Each parent must sign the slip stating that they are allowing their children to use the internet under supervision.

Ms. Cassidy explains how as teachers we need to change with the ever changing generations. This generation has never known anything but technology, so we must adapt and enhance their education with the tools they are familiar with. She also explains how the parents get involved with their students blogging because they can read about what their students are learning. The students in her class love writing their posts because they know somebody somewhere else is going to read them. Students in EDM310 are only some of the readers of these students blogs. They are able to see how many times their pages have been viewed and where in the world they were viewed from.

I found this video very educational, it was neat to see the different ways the students were using technology in their classroom. Ms. Cassidy is doing a great job enhancing her students learning with technology. I plan to use blogging when I become a teacher because it gives the students a chance to communicate with students from all over the world. I also really like the idea of having a class blog where the parents can go and see what their students are supposed to be doing and learning. I would love to ask Ms. Cassidy what she would do if she had a parent who did not want their student to participate in the online blogging. I feel they should still be given the chance to write and use the computers but instead keep the posts private or anonymous.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

C4T #3

David truss

Post 1
The third Teacher I was assigned was David Truss. Mr.Truss is the Vice Principal for District #43 in Coquitlam, BC, Canada. Mr.Truss' blog is titled Pair-A-Dimes for Your Thoughts, in the post Shifting Learning Mr.Truss talks about the 2013 Reform Symposium Conference that he was asked to present at. In his presentation Mr.Truss explains the goals of the iHub program, and for his school. Their goal is to create "an inquiry-driven, collaborative, and engaging learning environment." Mr.Truss wants to succeed in this by giving the students the opportunity to choose their own topics with guidance from teachers. Mr.Truss wants his school to focus on inquiry, voice, audience, community, leadership, play and network. With these 7 components Mr.Truss feels he can encourage his students to be involved in each others learning and also involve the community in encouraging the students to continue to learn.

The 2013 RSCON features over 100 presentations from around the world, Mr.Truss writes about 3 other the presentations he has watched so far. He wrote about Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D, whose presentation was on using social media to engage in personalized and relevant professional development.Second, Mr.Truss writes about the presentation by Chris Wejr. Wejr's presentation is about giving the teachers time and resources they need to learn, explore and connect during the school day. The third presentation Mr.Truss wrote about was by Kelly Tenkely,Michelle Baldwin, and Nancy Babbitt. This presentation is about "cultivating curious learners" and inquiry-based learning.

Post 2
In this post Mr. Truss talks about his Personal Learning Network, and how he has not been connected for awhile. He explains how it did not have a huge impact on his life to not be connected, but he missed it. He explains how he misses his network when he is not connected because then he is not constantly learning and changing, he is simply standing still. In this post Mr. Truss gives a few snippets of some of his must read blogs and I found a few of them very interesting. He explains how he starts out with a need for a presentation and then goes to his PLN and comes up with ideas. The snippets he used from his must read blogs, were about disagreement and how it should be used to enhance learning and teaching.
This post really showed me that a good PLN is worth having, because it challenges the way you think and shows you information you may not normally think to use. Mr. Truss does a great job explaining how he uses his PLN and explaining why it is important to have a PLN. My comment to Mr. Truss was that, he showed me how too really use a PLN and that my PLN needs a lot of work if it is going to compare to his one day.

C4K Summary for October

children around the world drawing
My first student for October's name is Mara. Mara is in Ms.Eppele's 6th grade class. In her blog post title The Book is Awesome!!!, Mara gives her opinion on Melody's new sister. It was really great to read Mara's post because she was so excited about the book and the information she was learning while reading. In my comment to Mara I told her how happy it makes me to see a student who is so excited about reading, and that she has very good writing skills.

My second student for October's name is Lizzie.She is in Mrs.Mclean's class. Lizzie's assignment was to choose a prompt from a list on her teacher's blog and write a post. Lizzie's post was titled What I like in a friend and it was a list of things she looks for in a friend. In my comment to Lizzie I told her that her list of things she looks for in a friend is a very strong list. Her list included someone who could be funny but also serious when necessary, someone who doesn't lie, and someone who likes her for who she is. I also encouraged Lizzie to never be ashamed of who she is because I feel that is one of the most important things a child should learn. Lizzie's writing skills were very nice. She used full sentences in her post and did not have any spelling errors.

My third student for October's name is Ben. He is in Mr. Warren Grieve's 5th grade class at Medbury School for Boys in ChristChurch, New Zealand. Ben is an excellent writer, he has very good grammar and writing skills for only being in 5th grade. His post was about their speech which is called Kiwi. Ben included very interesting facts on his post, and seemed to understand what he was saying in his post. The comment I left for Ben told him how excellent his writing skills were and that he should keep up the good work.

My fourth student for October was Mishaal. Mishaal is in Ms.Horst's 7th grade Language arts class in Oakland Ontario, Canada. Mishaal's post was about the book his class is reading titled Out of Mind, this is also the title of his post. Mishaal does a great job explaining what he has learned from the book, and how you should not judge people based on appearance or how they speak. Mishaal uses some details from the book to explain why you shouldn't judge someone. I told Mishaal that I agree with not judging people, I also agreed with the comment that Ms.Hurst posted saying that it was a great post but could use more specific details.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Project #14-Lesson Plan #2

For my lesson plan assignment, I created a Language Arts lesson plan. The lesson plan is for students in the fifth grade. The students will read the novel Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan. The lesson starts with an introduction about the 1900s and how people would communicate and travel. There are a few assignments for this lesson plan, but the main assignment is a group project. The students will create a Prezi after using iCurio to research the Northeast states and their flowers, animals and weather. The timeline for this project is approximately sixty minutes a day for two weeks. On Thursday, students will be given a 20-25 question test on the novel. The lesson plan ends on the second Friday when the students present their assignments to the class, and their parents. The students will also watch the movie Sarah, Plain and Tall.

Here is my website for my individual lesson plan assignments.

Sarah, Plain, and Tall Book cover

Monday, October 21, 2013

Blog assignment #10

Randy Paush
I really enjoyed Randy Pausch’s lecture. I loved his attitude and how positive he was even though he was battling cancer. Randy’s lecture did a very good job engaging the audience with questions and jokes. I really liked the quote Randy said about dealing with a situation.
"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand"
This goes right along with his positive outlook on life and his situation. This lecture is centered on following your childhood dreams, and how it is possible to achieve if you truly want them. Dr. Paush says “Brick walls are there to show us how badly we want something.” This is a great quote that says if you really want something do not let the obstacles stop you.

In this lecture Dr.Paush talks about how you should always act like Tigger in life. With this, he means that we should never let go of our wonder and dreaming that we all have as children.
Tigger bouncing
In the beginning of the lecture we learn that Dr. Randy Paush has cancer and has been given only a few months to live.This, however, does not stop him from living life to the fullest and achieving everything he planned to when he was a child. As a future teacher, this taught me that we should encourage children to set their goals as high as they can imagine. Letting students dream big encourages them to learn as much as possible to achieve their goals.

In his lecture, Dr.Paush explains his dreams he had as a child. These dreams were to be in zero gravity, playing in the NFL, writing an article for the World Book Encyclopedia, being Captain Kirk, winning a giant stuffed animal, and Being a Disney Imagineer. Dr. Paush then goes on to tell about how he achieved his dreams to the best of his ability. He explains how important it is to have specific dreams. As a teacher, I know I will come across the most creative dreams. It is important that I remember to always encourage students to never stop chasing their dreams no matter how crazy they appear to me.

Randy taught me a lot in this lecture. As a professor he let his students learn in a way they would enjoy, by giving them projects they were in total control of. This helped his students be more willing to learn. I also learned that you should always want criticism, because as Dr. Pausch said “when you are doing something badly, and no one is correcting you, then they have given up.” To be an affective teacher like Dr. Pausch, it is important to know how to encourage students through positive criticism. Dr. Randy Pausch was a very inspirational man who, with one lecture taught me many things about being an affective and powerful teacher.

 If you are going to dream, Dream Big. Small dog eating a big bone

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Blog Assignment #9

Brian Crosby
Brian Crosby’s video TEDxDenver Ed is a really great video. I loved his presentation on the students. Seeing how excited the students were with the balloon experiment and watching them continue to grow in excitement as the project grew. The students began with a small synthetic audience, and then as there blogs gained notice their audience grew and grew. I loved how Mr.Crosby allowed his student to grow as self-learners and encouraged them to want to learn on their own. Mr.Crosby also provided his students with the chance to talk to students around the world. The balloon project became so widespread that the students’ blogs were being viewed by hundreds of students, teachers, and even some scientists who were amazed by the work these young students were doing.

One class in New Zealand wanted to do the balloon experiment but their teacher did not know how to do it. So the students in Mr.Crosby’s class studied the language and skyped the students in New Zealand and presented the experiment to them. This gave the students the chance to learn and to shine because these other students were looking up to them and their work. Mr. Crosby included a student name Celeste. She was undergoing chemo. Mr. Crosby used Skype. So, Celeste is now included into everyday learning. Brian Crosby is a great example of a 21st century teacher. He uses every kind of technology available to him and his students to enhance their learning. Mr. Crosby showed how encouraging the students to want to learn can promote higher level learning and provide students who have been labeled because of their home life the chance to succeed.

Paul Andersen
In the Blended Learning Cycle video, Paul Andersen explains his methods on blended learning. He breaks it down into 6 parts: Question, Investigation, Video, Elaboration, Review, and Summary Quiz. In Question, Mr. Andersen poses a question to interest the students. He uses Euler's Disk as an example for his class. When the disk is spun on a mirror, it continues to spin until stopped. This grabs the students’ attention and they want to know why it does that. In Investigation, you experiment and see what happens. Mr. Andersen gives his students the Euler's disk and tells them to spin it on other surfaces to see what happens. In Video, Mr. Andersen has podcasted the instructions so that the students can do it independently instead of in a whole group lecture. Elaboration is where the students get into explaining why the disk spins the way it does. It involves the physics, making graphs, etc. In review, Mr. Andersen meets with small groups to ask questions and answer questions to make sure they understand the material. The last step is the Summary Quiz. Each student takes the quiz to see how much they learned. If they don’t understand then they go back and go through all the parts again.

Mark Church
In the video, Making Thinking Visible, it features sixth- grade teacher Mark Church. He teaches at the International School Amsterdam. He had his students work in groups, to discuss a video, from the previous day. The topic was The Early Human Beginnings the Origins of Human Society. The students work in groups and come up with a headline, from what they had been learning about. The students headlines were then hung on the bulletin board. Later on, when the students are doing their final project. After finishing their final project, students were told to think about what their headline is now. The students are to decide whether their thinking has changed. I like students working in small groups because I feel it helps keep students engaged. Personally, I like working in groups, because you can hear the thoughts of someone else. They can maybe better verbalize what you are trying to say.

Furthermore, working in groups can help give you a better understanding of a topic. I like being able to reflect on my work, which I did not have in school. I feel that encouraging students to reflect is great thing to teach to your students. Visible Thinking is a research-based approach to teaching thinking; it develops students’ thinking and communicates the idea more effectively. Also, at the same time deepens their understanding of the topics they are studying. Visible Thinking is based on different practices such as thinking routines, small sets of questions, students sharing their ideas, having a discussion and reflecting. After watching this video,we agree with Mr. Church’s approach to teaching and learning. Watching this video encourages us as future teachers to experiment with other types of learning.

Written By: Jacquelyne Mckiernan, Shernaye James, Savanah Moore

If we teach today's students as we taught yesterday's, we rob them of the future

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Blog Assignment #8

 21st Century Living written on a chalkboard

My group and I found many different educational tools that could be very useful. Some of the resources we found are Learnzillion, neok12, WatchKnowLearn, teacherTube, and Diigo. These are only a few of the many reasources available to teachers in the 21st century.

Diigo is a site that I found through one of my C4T assignments. I had never heard of it before but after it was mentioned in the post I decided to look into it. Diigo is a site that allows you to save information and share articles. With Diigo you and those you shared the article with are able to highlight and put notes on articles, allowing communication right there on the article. This site also allows you to create groups. The groups could be organized by grade level, subject or certain staff members. When you share an article with the group only they are able to view and comment on the article. The articles are saved and stored until they are needed. Diigo is great for when you find teaching resources and would like to share them, and with it being free it could be possible to create a class account that the students are able to use for group projects.
written by: Jacquelyne Mckiernan

Learnzillion is a website that provides high-quality instructional videos for grades 3-9. The lessons centered around Common Core standards in Math. LearnZillion provides assessment and progress reporting. Teachers can select a lesson for students to review and track their student’s progress, on the topic. LearnZillion is a free site. Teachers need to sign up first. You can search by grade level, topic, or standard. The way LearnZillion will be used, is by assigning videos for students to watch. After watching the assigned video, students will complete practice activities and quizzes. The benefits are: students can practice and review videos to help them understand the content which they are learning. LearnZillion is great because it helps in providing high-quality instructional content, for each individual student’s needs.
Written By: Shernaye James

The Learning Tube
Teachertube is a great website I use at work. At most schools, youtube is blocked when using the internet, so when teachers wanted to show their class a video about what they were learning they couldn’t! Teachertube was created so that teachers could enhance their students learning by showing them videos about the things they are learning on a safe website. It contains tons of educational videos that are appropriate for the classroom. At work, I use Teachertube when tutoring kids. Sometimes hearing the information another way in a video, helps the student understand better. Teachertube is also useful for me! The way kids are taught to do math is completely different from the way I was taught so it is useful for me to go on there and learn the new methods of learning!
Written By Savanah Moore

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Podcast Project #9

Here is the podcast Shernaye James, Savanah Moore, and I recorded. Our quote by Mark Prensky that we discussed is "The students in our classrooms are changing-largely as a result of their outside-of-school experiences with technology-and are no longer satisfied with an education that doesn't immediately address the real world in which they live." We all agreed that out-of-school experiences are a result of the ever changing classroom. In this podcast we discuss the quote and how we feel about incorporating the students’ passions and after school knowledge into their everyday classroom learning. I hope you enjoy!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

C4K Summary for September


My first C4K student's name was Michelle. She wrote her This I Believe essay on Softball being a team sport. Michelle gave excellent examples on how softball is a team sport, including cheering on your teammates, encouraging them when they miss a ball or simply passing the ball as quickly as possible. Michelle's essay was very well written she used proper grammar and did not have any major spelling mistakes. Michelle enhanced her essay even further by including a sound recording of her essay.

My Second C4K student's name was Himanshi. She is in fifth grade and lives in Guatemala City. In the post I read which was titled Writing A Song!, Himanshi writes about her experience when she wrote a song. She goes from the start to finish of writing the song. Himanshi shows very good writing skills and moderate grammar and spelling. Himanshi also shows excitement towards her blog which is wonderful to see. I enjoyed reading her post and seeing how excited she was about her song writing.

My third C4k student's name was Jabez. He is from the PT England school and in his 7th year of school in Auckland, NZ. His blog post was titled Rainbow Warrior Bombing. His post was about witnessing a bombing. He described how he witnessed how the bombs were placed and how the bombers were eventually caught. I commented on Jabez's post telling him that he did a very good job describing the scene he saw before him.

My fourth C4K student's name was Emmy. She is in Mrs.Ripp's 4th grade class. Emmy was assigned to be completely silent for 20 minutes while trying to solve brain teaser's with a partner. They did this activity in response to reading "Out of Mind", a story about a girl name Melody who suffers from Cerebral Palsy.In her post titled Silence! Emmy did a very good job writing about her experience. She explained how difficult it was to communicate without talking or writing. Emmy also wrote how she understands how difficult communicating must be for Melody. I responded to Emmy's post telling her that she did a very good job describing the activity and that she was very understanding of the difficulties Melody goes through.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Blog Assignment #7

What can you learn from Anthony Capps conversations?

Still of Anthony Capps interview
Project Based Learning Part 1
In the video Project Based Learning Part 1 Anthony Capps discusses his use of Project based learning in his 3rd grade class. Anthony gives a really good point when he says that the projects should not be just in class. He explains that they should involve a real audience and include the community; this encourages the students to do better work and to really care about their project. Anthony also talks about using project based learning as a teaching tool rather than just an accessory to your lesson. He gives an example of having his students write letters to the governor Jo Bonner about women fighting in combat. This project was content driven and met reading, writing and social studies standards. The project also was community driven and the students were able to learn information from their community. I really enjoyed listening to Anthony Capps talk about his experiences in a classroom, and it is really neat to see what we learn in EDM310 in a classroom.

Project Based Learning Part 2
In the second half of Project Based Learning Anthony discussed how not all projects have a great outcome. Anthony gives an example of how his class was studying Afghanistan and learning about the culture. Anthony explains how one of his parents who had served in Afghanistan did not want their child to do the project, and they wanted to keep their child sheltered from that culture. This example is really important because it shows how that not all projects are going to be an absolute success, Anthony's students learned a lot from this project and they had excellent reviews. I really loved when Anthony said "create an opportunity for your students to go beyond what you expect." I think this is a great quote to live by when it comes to creating activities for your students, allowing them to learn and go above and beyond is a great way to motivate them for higher learning.

In this video title iCurio Anthony Capps moves on from his discussion of Project Based Learning to iCurio. Anthony explains how he uses iCurio to help his students become organized and teach them virtual organization, and to keep track of all of their notes and information. I really enjoyed learning more about iCurio, Anthony explains how iCurio is very kid friendly and blocks out sites that are inappropriate for kids. I found the historical figures feature to be very interesting, and how you can search with categories. I feel this could be very useful in my future classroom, when my students need to do a research project or assignment.

Discovery Education
In the video Discovery Education we learn about the site Discovery Education. In this video Anthony uses the quote "If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video must be worth a million" I agree with this quote, and also in the use of Discovery Ed. I really liked Anthony's example with studying plants and using Discovery Ed to enhance the study and viewing pictures and videos about the plants.

Use tech Don't Teach It
I really agree with everything Anthony said in the video Use Tech Don't Teach It. Gradually adding in the technology and focusing on one specific tool at a time is a great way to help the students understand how to use them. Anthony uses the term scaffolding as a way to describe how he uses technology and introduces it into his classroom. This means that he adds on each week, he uses the example of starting with a research tools, and then having them use the video tool and by week three his students were able to do research video's where they are recording the information that they researched. I really enjoyed watching this video and learning from Anthony about different ways to use technology.
Written by: Jacquelyne Mckiernan

Tips for Teachers
In the video, The Anthony - Strange Tips for Teachers Part 1, Dr. Strange and Anthony Capps give tips to future educators. These tips covered key topics that any new teacher should think about. The first thing that Dr. Strange and Anthony suggested is to really be interested, in learning yourself. Anthony says that work is not separate from play, in teaching. He says teachers learn the craft of teaching, in their free time. Another tip that was suggested is to be flexible. Anthony emphasizes the importance of keeping students engaged. He encourages the listener to have a goal of 100 percent engagement. Anthony also says that it is important, to include information the students care about. Lastly, Anthony discusses the importance of reflection, revising and sharing. As a future educator, these are great tips to use and remember.
Written by: Shernaye James

Additional Thoughts
In the video Additional Thoughts About Lessons Anthony made some very good points on how there are four tiers in lesson planning; the school year, the unit, weekly, and daily. You start with everything you need to cover in the whole school year. Then you break it down into units, which would be about 6 weeks long. By the end of the unit the students should be able to do X in that subject. When looking at your unit, you should divide the lessons into weeks. For example if our unit is plants, week one may be all about what is in the dirt and what needs to be in the dirt for something to grow, week two could be focusing on the roots, week three could focus on the stem and leaves, and so on.

At the end of the unit the students should know more about how plants work, what they need to survive, etc. Your weeks then need to be divided into days.The days to week act just like the weeks to unit. On Friday, your students should know X about that subject. If we continue with the plant unit, in week three the students should know all about stems and leaves and their functions. So Monday the students should learn where the stem and leaves are on the plant, Tuesday they can learn why the stem is important, etc. On Friday, the students should know all about stems and leaves. My biggest fear about teaching is not having enough time to cover all of the material well enough that the kids understand it, but I think that this tier lesson plan idea will help.
Written by: Savanah Moore

Project # 13 Lesson Plan 1

for the collaborative Lesson Plan assignment Shernaye James, Savanah Moore and I created a lesson plan intended for students in grade 2. Our Lesson Plan is title Hurricane Charting , This is the calendar of events for our week long lesson plan. Here is an Overview of our lesson plan. we start off with an introduction to the topic with a video about Hurricanes. Our main assignment for this lesson plan is a group assignment where the students create a Hurricane Tracking chart. The time line for this project is about 30-60 minutes a day for one week. The assignment will end on Friday after the presentations of the students tracking charts with a test on the material and fun weather related movie.
We also created a site dedicated to our lesson plan,Check it out here

Hurricane hitting the U.S

Monday, September 30, 2013

Project #2 Progress Report on PLN

people linked together in a Personal learning network

Beginning Stages:

For my Personal Learning Network I chose to use Symbaloo. I chose this site to create my PLN because it is very easy to maneuver and organize. To use Symbaloo you add tiles to a webmix and each tile contains a link. Symbaloo has helped me organize all of my EDM310 networking sites and many educational sites that I have found on my own.

As of right now, my PLN contains contains information about :

Social Media
Twitter -I use Twitter to follow many USA staff and students, as well as other educators.
YouTube -I use YouTube for my EDM310 class projects, and also to watch assigned material and related materials.
Learnist -Learnist is a site very similar to Pinterest but has categories such as Education, and Learning. I am new to Learnist but from what I have found on it I believe it will be a great site to have in my PLN.

The University of South Alabama
I have links for the South Alabama homepage, which is useful to have because they post school information to the main webpage.

I have links to the EDM310 blog and links to My Blog. These are useful to have on my PLN because after leaving this class it will make it easier to find the two if I need to view them for any reason.

Writing Tools
I have links to Purdue Owl and Grammar Girl. These sights are useful to have in my PLN because I can send my students there or use tips from the sites to help improve my writing or my students writing.

I also have contact information from former professors at USA and many personal friends who are already teachers in many different grades.

C4T #2

Blogging and the Literacy Curriculum
My second teacher blog that I read and commented on was titled Primary Tech written by Kathleen Morris. Mrs. Morris is a teacher at Leopold Primary School in Australia. Mrs. Morris's post that I commented on is titled Blogging and the Literacy Curriculum . In this post Mrs.Morris writes about her experience with introducing blogging into her curriculum. She does not just have the students blog pointlessly, she incorporates the blogging into her lessons. I really enjoyed the section of her blog labeled "Blogging is all about Literacy", Morris gives very good reasoning for using blogs in the classroom. In my comment to Mrs.Morris, I told her that I agree with that students should be able to read, write and interact across a range of platforms tools and medias. I also agree with her idea that Blogging is an excellent way to teach traditional and multi-modal 21st century skill.

Looking Back, Looking Forward
My second post by Mrs.Morris was titled Looking Back,Looking Forward.In this post Mrs. Morris explains how she is cleaning out her teaching resources and updating to the 21st century. Mrs. Morris was leaving her classroom for maternity leave, and was not sure when she would be returning. As Morris cleans her classroom out and prepares it for the new teacher, she writes about her experiences as a new teacher up to now when she is leaving after 10 years. I really liked reading this post because in my experience, most teachers who have been teaching as long as Mrs. Morris or longer do not make the switch to 21st century teaching styles. Mrs. Morris gives great examples of how she is updating her plans for teaching when she returns by throwing out her beloved work sheets and busy work and introducing a more hands on learning experience for her students.
stack of discarded worksheets

future and past collide sign

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Project #8 Book Trailer

For my book trailer I chose my favorite book from when I was younger, I find this book to be very entertaining and it even has a nice lesson to be learned. The book is called Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse written by Kevin Henkes, and is about a little girl who decides to bring her favorite purse to school one day and has to go through the consequences of having it taken away and understanding why disrupting the class was not the right thing to do. I hope you enjoy!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Blog Assignment #6

For this blog assignment, I read a few of the assigned materials and then I was still curious about techniques of questioning in the classroom. I was able to find a really interesting page titled Types of Questions which is an excerpt from the book Concept-based curriculum and instruction for the thinking classroom written by H.L. Erickson. I found this page interesting because it breaks down the types of questions we need to ask as teachers. The five question types are factual, convergent, divergent, evaluative, and combinations.

Factual Questions
Factual questions bring forward simple straight forward answers that are based on facts. These types of questions are the lowest level of cognitive or affective processes, and the answers are right or wrong based on the factual information. Asking for specific details about a problem or story would be an example of factual questions.

Convergent questions bring answers that are not as defined as factual questions but have a small range of acceptable answers. Convergent questions have different cognition levels; these include comprehension, analysis, and application. The answers to these questions could also be influenced by what the student already knows or personal opinion. Broad questions that include reflections would be an example of a convergent question.

Divergent questions have a much wider range of answers because these questions require students to analyze, synthesize and evaluate a knowledge base to come to a conclusion. The answers to this type of question are often varied and include multiple scenarios. The answers to divergent questions are also based on possibility and probability to the information given. These questions are meant to encourage creativity, imagination and investigation. An example of a divergent question would be what if questions, where you question a variable in the problem or story.

Evaluative questions are meant to test the high levels of cognition by combining logic, affective thinking and comparisons. The answers are also not specific, and are viewed by multiple perspectives. An example of this kind of question would be a compare and contrast question.

Combination questions are a mix of the four other types of questions. An example of a combination would be asking your students to give specific details while also thinking about and discussing what could have change if a certain variable was different. This example combined factual and divergent questioning.

I found this page very useful in that it broke down the types of questions, and also gave an example question for each type. This page would make a very good source for someone who was not sure what type of questions they are asking. Also this site could be used to decide what type of questions you should be asking when you are looking for a specific answer.

man writing a question

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Blog Assignment #5

iCurio and Discovery Ed


iCurio is a site that offers digital curriculum that focuses on the individual needs of the students in grades k-12. iCurio is a useful tool to help enhance lectures and improve student engagement in the lecture. iCurio has many benefits; the most obvious benefit would be the personalization that it offers. iCurio allows the teacher to focus on the specific needs of the students. iCurio provides tools and flexibility to become individual learners and give the teacher a chance to work with students who need extra help. iCurio also encourages student engagement using videos, interactive activities and images. I plan to use iCurio in my future classroom to help personalize my lesson plans and enhance my lecture with videos and images.

Discovery Ed

Discovery Ed is an online media service that offers real time assessments, interactive textbooks, virtual activities, customizable and state standards materials. Discovery Ed encourages students to be more engaged in their classroom, because it transforms a traditional classroom into a digitally enhanced classroom. Discovery Ed also provides a homework help section for students to use if they are having trouble with their homework. In my classroom I plan to use Discovery Ed for morning work assignments, and to enhance my lectures even further.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Blog Assignment #4

I really enjoyed reading the posts on the Langwitches blog, in these posts they showed the process the teachers and students went through to read and record the books. I listened to the Flat Stanley podcast and the Magic Treehouse podcast. I really loved listening to the students reading the scripts they created because you could just listen and hear the excitement the children were getting out of recording the stories. The children were able to experiment with pitch, tone and volume of their voices when reading the lines of the script.

After listening to the podcasts recorded by the 1st and 2nd graders I watched the video The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom. I did not realize there were two different types of podcasts. This video taught me that podcasts are just the audio recordings and when you add visuals to the recording the term is vodcasts. I found the idea of using podcasts or vodcasts as a way for children who are absent from school to be able to still see the lecture and not miss out on school very interesting. Giving students the chance to see the lecture even if they missed school is a great way to help students catch up if they are sick, or fall behind in class.

This video also showed the students reading along with a video recording of a book, the students reacted very well to the recording. The students seemed more interested in the story when there was tone change and noises going along with the story rather than just the students reading or the teacher reading. After reading and listening to this material I hope to be able to use podcasts in my future classroom, to help enhance my students learning. logo