Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Final Post PLN

              I have discovered that my Personal Learning Network is quite important. When I first started adding my links to Symbaloo, it dawned on me that everyone I correspond with is a resource. The students in class with me (My Group), the teachers we have been assigned in C4T, and all of the services we signed up for or used this semester (Timetoast, Skype, Twitter, Foliotek, etc.) are all available to me at the click of a link. As a future teacher, the resources and people we can call on for help is crucial. I have added many links to it, but I hope it will never be done. I will always meet new people who can help me. I'll always come across new websites, and technology that can benefit me.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Blog Post #14

Teacher Knows if You’ve Done the E-Reading

         Several insructors from Texas A&M have started to use a technology that shows them how many times their students read their E-book. They can also see the time they read it. This gives the professors the ability to see if the students that struggle with the course are truly struggling. There was an example of one student who had solid quiz scores, but the teacher could see that he had only opened his e-book once. Therefore she was able to approach the student about his study habits. It is said that we cannot really learn the material if we open the book on test day.
E-readers          I know personally know that in secondary education, most teachers, "Teach the tests." So in my high school, with almost all the core classes, the teachers focus on what will be on the test. When I as a student in high school realized that, my study habits changed tremendously. I would have an hour or two to cram the material into my brain, and as soon as the test was over I forgot the material. As a student I think that the technological way of educating children is much more effective. Maybe had the teachers been more aggressive about our everyday studying, my study habits would be better now. I won't lie, if I had , "Big Brother", watching my moves, I might get a bit annoyed. But I'd most likely understand that it was for the betterment of MY future.
          As a teacher, I would love to know when and for how long my students studied every night. I could analyze bad grades, or problem students easier. I would know that if a student consecutively did poorly on my exams, and they rarely ever read the book, the issue would lie with the way the student spends his/her time. It would also be a cool concept to put the, "fear", into students. If I didn't see that they had read the night before, I would deduct points from their in-class grade. Very cool.

If I were to talk to the teacher from Texas A&M I'd ask:
      - Do you think your students are more likely to study, if they know you can see their online activity?
      - Do they really like the technology, or do they feel like it is a bit invasive?
On the other hand, if I were to question the students, I'd ask:
      - KNOWING that your professor can see your study habits, do you feel like you study more or less?
      - How do you feel about the new technology? How do you feel about technology in education in general?

I'd comment:

My old high school has technology similar to this. The county gave them all Mac book air laptops. And I have heard different results. I know that the kids who were already driven, are even more driven, knowing their teacher is watching their activity. I have heard as well, some students like the idea of refusing to study because the teacher sees them.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Progress on final project

My group: Justice League has decided to do the movie. We are doing a series of tips to help you stay on top of your work in EDM310. I think it will be an awesome video. Thankfully I feel like I have followed our upcoming advice! We will start recording on tuesday!

Blog Post #13 TED/Students of Today.

Brian Crosby
        In this TED talk, Mr. Crosby talked about his group of fourth graders who were 90% second language learners. He took a poll the second day of class and only 9 students knew what city they lived in, and 3 students knew what country they lived in. He goes on to talk about a general disconnection between students and education today. He says we need to get our students involved more in class. The easiest way to do this in my opinion is to encourage active learning or hands on learning. Crosby gives an example of his students doing a hot air balloon assignment. This way the kids actively examined the properties of the balloon. They learned why the heat lifted the device, why it had to be light weight, etc. 
        To me, this post connects extremely well with all of our other posts. Crosby identifies that there is definitely something terribly wrong with education today. He gives a somewhat different solution. Most of our posts simply say technological enhancement will give education the boost it needs to rejuvenate itself. Crosby in my mind suggests a more hands on way of learning. This way it appeals to all types of learning; auditory, visual, kinesthetic. I believe the most important part of education is recognizing each aspect and making sure to cover all three. This will bring about a well rounded lesson and group of students. 

Students on facebook in class.           What do students really do? Are they really paying attention? Are they taking notes on their laptops? This video gives a closer look at the students of today. The main points to me are that classes aren't personal. There is one statistic that only 18% of the student's professors know her name. With classes of 100 plus students, how can we expect them to know our names? But this creates an atmosphere of generic learning, with teachers only focused on the curriculum they are supposed to teach. There is another point made about students buying hundred dollar textbooks that they never use. Even with financial aid, that is expensive, and a waste. Though we can sell the books back to the bookstore, we get cheated with the amount they give back to us. Last semester I paid $150.00 for a book that I used ONCE, and I got $40.00 back for it. Or something even worse, when they say a, "New Edition", is coming out for the next semester so they cannot buy it. Usually a new edition has a new co-author and a few commas moved around, but they can't buy it back. How can we expect students to pay attention when they aren't having their education needs met in most classes? Why should I give my attention to a professor who doesn't care about my education? The point is, for us to expect a positive result, we must give a positive environment to students. We will always reap what we sew.

Project #13

My group: Justice League consists of myself, Alex Thompson and Jessica Harris. We used many tools to communicate throughout this class. The main thing we used was Email and text messaging. We also used Skype and Google Drive to brainstorm ideas for project 15 and 16. Skype and text messaging were the fastest ways to talk, but email and Google Drive were the most reliable. I think that effective communication is vital in this type of project oriented class.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Blog Post #12 Personal project

Open and holding a delete button.
Self Assigned Assignment: English

English, language and grammar are tough beasts to master. Usually, when a student is in an English class, they are assigned essay, after essay. To me, the quickest way to get, burnt out on a subject is for the material to be given to you in a tedious way. Some of my favorite things in English are poems and grammar. My assignment to my future students is a two part lesson. They will learn the importance of editing, punctuation and spelling.

1. Write a poem. It can be about anything they want. Catch: You must your hardest to use BAD grammar. Little to no punctuation, misspell almost everything and no need for capitalization or subject-verb agreement. There is no specific length for the poem, just BE CREATIVE!

My Poem:

the see the see the see
unparaleled en it's beuty
its waves ror lik a lion
and rol twards the shoor
they begun on the horizen
breck an roll no moar

the son the son the son
pravide us with som fun
it glow and lights the wurld we're in
for half of the day cause it can
it's warmth dances up on our skin
and kises us until we tan.

the beech the beech the beech
for me its alwayz in reech
An our driv and one quik dash
akros the sand to meat the see
and touch the waves; b4 they crash
while injoying the son that incumpeses me.

PART 2: Revise the poem! Have a classmate proofread your revised draft. Write one to two paragraphs explaining the kinds of mistakes that were in the first draft. Also explain the overall importance of proofreading and editing.

The sea, the sea, the sea
Unparalleled in beauty
Its waves roar like a lion,
And roll on toward the shore
They begin at the horizon,
Break, and roll no more.

The sun, the sun, the sun,
Provides us with some fun.
It glows and lights the world we're in
For half a day because it can.
Its warmth dances upon our skin,
And kisses us until we tan.

The beach, the beach, the beach,
For me, it is always in reach.
An hour drive and one quick dash
Across the sand to meet the sea
and touch the waves before they crash
while enjoying the sun that encompasses me.

              In my first poem I threw grammar out of the window. I used no punctuation, or capitalization and I used terrible spelling. I did this on purpose, just to see how important grammar really is. I tried to use little or no punctuation, which turned into the old example of, "Lets eat, Grandpa. vs. Lets eat Grandpa." It goes without saying that a period or comma helps make important distinctions in a sentence. I basically closed my eyes when I was trying to spell the words. Incorrectly spelled words just make the poem that much more difficult to comprehend. Overall, without grammar my poem makes no sense at all.
             It is important to edit your work to make sure that no small errors slip through the cracks. When I rewrote the poem and heavily edited my work it turned into a pretty good poem. I am clearly talking about different aspects of the beach, and describing them. This would be a great project for secondary students. It allows them to be creative and silly with the first poem. The second poem requires them to correct themselves and let themselves be corrected by a classmate. The students also get experience in basic peer review.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

C4K #2

    Kristin's blog post was entitled, "Digital Learning Day." It was very thought provoking and overall a really good post!

    Isara is in the 7th grade at a school in NZ. She and her friend made a rap about education to encase how they felt. This was also a great way to show that they could use the website Vimeo. Very interesting blog,

Riley D
    Riley is in the 8th grade. I read his blog from Mr. Boylen's 8th grade Language arts class. He wrote a  very cool story about himself and a character named Cade. I really enjoyed reading his blog post.

It makes me glad to see students such as these using blogging in a positive way. It gives me hope for the future generation of people. I know that they will be literate, and learned in technological advances. Maybe we aren't doomed.

C4T #3 John Spencer

Are Pencils Making Us Narcissistic?
    In this post, Mr. Spencer uses a comic approach to show his readers that technology isn't evil, but how it can be used is. His post says that pencils didn't make us narcissistic and self centered, we did that much on our own. But if we pick up the pencil with malicious intentions, it is the most evil tool we can have.
    I think that Mr. Spencer creates a valid point. Technology is a wonderful thing, but if we use it for the wrong reasons, it is a terrible tool. It is almost like we have to train our students to use modern tech products in the right ways. For example, I have realized through EDM310 that twitter isn't all that bad. It can be a very useful form of communication.

Remember Pencil Quests?
    The second article I chose from Mr. Spencer was about going on a pencil quest. I think this is an excellent way to gain and hold the attention of my future students. I hope that I can make my become interested in learning.
     Fun projects or assignments always kept me ready to learn. I will use quests like these, and hopefully create some new, fun ideas on my own. Like a Vocabulary hunt; where my classes go on a scavenger hunt around campus to find all of the vocab words I have hidden. That way they will have fun, and learn their vocabulary words.

C4T# 2 Kathleen Morris

Kathleen is a fourth grade teacher at Leopold Primary School near Geelong in Victoria, Australia. She and her school just got Acer Laptops for each student to have for the 4th, 5th, and 6th grade. In her post she seemed a little worried about what she would use them for. Lots of commenters suggested podcasting, blogging, etc. She says she was calling out to her PLN for advice.

My comment said that she should let her students create and expand their own PLN's. Have an email-penpal. I think it would be an awesome way to encourage their interest and knowledge of technology. I hope I can do this with my future students. In EDM310, the most beneficial thing we have done is the PLN.

Blog Post #11 Mrs. Cassidy

Little Kids, Big Potential
Mrs. Cassidy's sudent using an iPad
             In this video, Mrs. Cassidy shows several pictures of her class of first graders using the Internet and blogging.  Her students are effectively using their blogs to communicate with people worldwide. She says her students receive comments from a lot of people, some of which are from other countries. What about online predators, a six-year-old could be extremely vulnerable to the evils of the world wide web. Mrs. Cassidy's students instruct us that when dealing with the Internet, you should only post your first name. Good advice. Well, kids don't really have, "Filters", on what is appropriate to say,  and how you should say it. Cyber bullying is one of the biggest issues with children and adolescents. How would we make sure our students were behaving appropriately? The students in her class tell us in the video that you must be careful with what you say. They understand that if they comment on a post in a negative way, it can hurt someones feelings.
           What an amazing thing. These kids are grasping life lessons before they reach second grade. By using this technology, they are developing skills that they will use for the rest of their lives.

Skype Interview with Mrs. Cassidy and Dr. Strange
             Mrs. Cassidy developed her technologically enhanced classroom a decade ago. Her class was given computers, but they were unable to download programs. She states that when you have five of something in one classroom, it becomes a center of focus. She resorted to using the Internet for online education programs. Mrs. Cassidy attended professional development seminars to make sure she knew what she was doing, and to learn how to use the computers to their full potential. She says that she hasn't encountered a principal yet who has been discouraging of her way of teaching. However; some were not interested in the technological enhancement. So they let her continue her practices, but didn't encourage others to try them, nor did they make an effort to learn about them. Because of online safety, Mrs. Cassidy sent a permission slip home with every student to have signed by their parents. This slip made known to the parents that their children would be participating in an online blogging experience, and that they would be communicating with people world-wide. Most of the parents were okay with the blogs, because they could watch their child's activities and development any time they wanted.
              I think it is incredible that she is teaching so much to her first graders. The only thing I remember learning in first grade was simple addition and subtraction, and perfecting the art of coloring inside the lines. To think we could have learned more, at a quicker pace. My favorite part about Mrs. Cassidy is that when she was given this new technology, she took steps to make sure she knew how to use the computers herself. This shows a lot of passion on her part. It says that she really cares about what, and how she teaches her students. "Technology isn't going away, it is here to stay." Mrs. Cassidy is truly giving her students a better opportunity for learning. She is setting a fantastic base for their educational journey. Because of this, I really think her students will progress much further than the other first graders.