Sunday, July 17, 2011

Blog Assignment 14

iphone saying hello world

I chose to do the “e-media fast” for blog post 14. It wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be. I was with my family in Destin on vacation so I thought that it would be great time to try and focus more on my family and less on my cell phone and laptop. The hardest part was not being able to use my iPhone. I realized that I use my iPhone for absolutely everything. I had never noticed how much I rely on my phone for all sorts of information. I kept wanting to grab my phone to check the weather, my email, Facebook, or just Google something. I can’t remember the days when I couldn’t just Google something and find out anything about a topic in a second.

Another difficult part was the lack of entertainment. I really had to keep myself entertained so that I didn’t sit down and watch television or get on my laptop. My family helped out a lot and being in Destin didn’t hurt either. We tried to stay busy doing things outside, but it was raining the entire time so that was pretty difficult. After doing this experiment I realized how much we rely on technology these days. Our society is based on using technology, whether it is for directions, news, communication, or entertainment. I really appreciate my iPhone and laptop much more now.

I think that this is great experiment to do with the students in my own classroom. They will realize how much they count on technology for everyday things and school work. I can’t even remember the days when I couldn’t get online and a search a topic and have tons of information in seconds. We use technology so often that it has become more of a basic thing to have rather than a convenience and we forget what an immense convenience it is.  

Friday, July 15, 2011

Final PLN Report

I must say that I have really enjoyed using Symbaloo. This site has so many different things to offer. It seems that I add a new icon to my PLN everyday. It took me a little while to get
use to the convenience of it. I set Symbaloo as my homepage so as soon as I go online everything that I need is right there waiting for me. I use the news tab quite a bit. I use to have to go to yahoo and CNN to get the news I was looking for, but now I just visit my homepage and everything I could want to know is right there. I told my mother-in-law about Symbaloo and she is now going to teach this technology to the teachers that she works with so that they can use in their classrooms.

I had Twitter before starting EDM 310, but had only been using it for about 3 weeks. I have started following different educators and others who are
twitter and facebook icons

experimenting with technology. You can really learn a lot from people on social networking sites. I have been a member of Facebook for quite some time. I use it to stay connected with friends who have moved away and family members. The best part about Facebook is the ease of staying connected and finding new connections. I recently got a friend of mine a job who just recently moved to Key West, where I live 3 years ago, with a photographer that I use to work with. This was all thanks to Facebook.

I also added all of my email account to my PLN. I have about four different email account and was able to put them all together on my PLN. I can no go to my homepage, Symbaloo, and click on all of my email accounts without having to search four different email account.
gmail icon

Symbaloo has really helped me organize my life pretty much. I have so much to keep up with in school and just everyday things and Symbaloo helps me keep everything in place.

C4T 4

Mr. Burrows uses his blog to display all of the different art pieces that are done by his students. The first post that I read and viewed was one where he posted many sculptures that his class had done. They were instructed to research a mythical creature of their choice and then make it into a clay sculpture. This was only the second time that most of these students had used this type of clay before.

I was very impressed by the work that his students had created. His students are probably very proud to have their work displayed in such a way. Have their work chosen by the teacher have it posted to his blog would be an honor. I think that when teachers offer this type of reward to the class then the students tend to work harder to make their work stand out so that they will be the ones being recognized. This is a wonderful concept to be used in all classrooms. Not only will students work harder but they will do their best work since it will be displayed for the public to see.

Mr. Burrows also posted some oil pastels pieces with some collages added in for extra color. He mentioned that this was the first time these students had worked with oil pastels. There were also some pieces done by another class using surrealism. This, he said, was a little difficult for the students to grasp, but they ended up doing a great job.

I have worked with oil pastels before and it isn't easy. He also gave them instruction to add collage into their drawings. They were all beautiful. You can tell by looking at Mr. Burrow's blog that his students really enjoy his class. They get to work on a project and then enjoy the finished product, much like EDM310. I think that this is the reason why I enjoy EDM so much. When you put so much effort into something it is always a plus to be able to enjoy what you have created.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Blog Assignment 13

class blog

Jose Picardo brings to light some great tools that can be used in the classroom. There were many that I have used before but never really thought to use them in my class. He mentioned a couple of interactive websites and a website that can be used to create your own games specifically for a lesson you may be teaching. This would be great to use in a history class for different history facts. Students, I think, tend to absorb more information from interacting with others rather than just listening to a teacher lecture. It is good for both the teacher and the student to change up the method of teaching every so often and using games in class is a great way to do that.

Mr. Picardo also mentioned blogging and podcasting. These are two technologies that I will definitely be using in my classroom. The class blog will allow students to keep up with assignments and due dates. The students can also interact with one another on the blog about class material. I can’t count how many times I have gone home from school and started on my homework and then had a question, but had no way to reach a classmate or the teacher. The blog can also be available to parents to keep them up to date on what their child is learning in their class. Podcast’s are wonderful for students. I want to make podcast’s in my class so that my students can go back and listen to my lectures at any time, especially before a test for extra review.

The different tips from Mr. Picardo are extremely useful. He makes some great points on different ways to use these resources.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Project 15

Final Project Progress Report

colorful picture of Mona Lisa

For our final project my group and I will make a video about the good side of EDM 310. Before beginning EDM 310 all I heard were horror stories about how time consuming this class is and how many projects there are. I think that future students should see all of the cool things that we have learned throughout the semester and how rewarding this class is. For example, the blog that we have created is very rewarding because you can look back and see all of the awesome projects that you have created. We will begin filming this week.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Blog Assignment 12

picture of red school house as computer

Watch this video: Teaching With Technology and discuss some of the advantages to using this type of technology in the classroom and how you think that technology could enhance students learning.

This is a news cast from a local news station in Austin, TX. They make a visit to Bowie High School where they are incorporating more technology into the classroom. They have put, what they call, innovation stations in some of their classes. The students are able to be interactive by all answering the questions that pop up on the screen. There are many different features on this station. The system can randomly choose students to be called on in class, one student that was interviewed said that this kept him from falling asleep in class. Another student said that the innovation station made learning more "competitive" in the classroom. The board shows who answers the questions and how long it took them to come up with that answer. There is also the advantage of going green and not using so much paper in school.

The teachers said that students were able to learn more faster by using these systems. This shows that technology is a great tool to be used in the classroom. Students really seem to enjoy it and teachers seem to enjoy implementing it.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Blog Assignment 11

cartoon says to blog or not to blog

I want to start off by saying that Ms. Cassidy is wonderful. I am sure that it takes a lot of patience to teach this kind of technology to a first grade class. While watching the video it is obvious that her students are very enthusiastic about working on their blogs and learning all about using technology. She mentioned in her interview that instead of writing on paper and turning the paper in to her they use their blog. I think that this is great. The students know that their post will be seen by many other students and bloggers this will encourage them to do well on their writing and it makes it more fun or them. The students also have the opportunity to talk with other classes through skype in their classroom, students their age and in college that have been reading their blog. I believe that skype is a great tool to be used in the class. It makes learning exciting for the students, to be able to get to know the people that comment on their blog and to share ideas. Another very important aspect of teaching students technology such as this is that they must know the importance of safety on the internet. Ms. Cassidy’s class seemed to be very aware of the rules to be followed while using the internet.

When I do get my own classroom I would like to start a classroom blog like Ms. Cassidy’s. I will be teaching at the middle school level in history. It would be beneficial to the students to be able to communicate with other history classes that also have blogs. They could even skype with these other classes and share new information that they have learned in class. I have also thought about having my class do different projects and then have them present their projects on skype, with the other class being the audience, and also posting it on the class blog. This would encourage the students to do well since they will be preparing these projects for many people to see. The possibilities are really endless. As Ms. Cassidy said, she is always looking to “push the envelope”.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

C4T 3


Mr. Miranda posted a video on his blog from a 70's sitcom about a young man who wanted to drop out of school. There was a teacher who made a bet with him that if he could teach him about the atom in two minutes then the student had to stay in school. He uses gang metaphors in order to teach the lesson. The young man recites the information correctly back to the teacher, he did it. Mr. Miranda believes that this technique of creative teaching is not effective. I agree and disagree. I think that this method of teaching can be effective with some students, as is with any method. All students learn differently. For example, I learn my doing things which is why I feel that I have learned so much in EDM 310.

In another post by Mr. Miranda he explains that students in college today are there to get a good job and not to enrich their minds. The certification received after graduated assures employers that this person knows how to follow direction and knows how to please authority figures. I agree with him. Most of my classes consist of attending lectures, memorizing facts, and then taking a Scantron test. After completing the test most of the information I have memorized goes right out the window. I believe in order to learn one must experience, and that is what we have done in EDM 310. I can say that I don't believe I have learned more in any other class. By doing projects and watching so many great videos I have learned that technology is much needed in the classroom and I have learned how to use it.

Special Assignment 2

TED, iTunesU, and Kahn Academy

1. The Khan Academy is a not-for-profit that gives education to anyone who is willing to learn. People everywhere can access this website and watch lectures from educators everywhere, the website it easy to navigate as well. There are examples of all kinds of worked algebra problems and all sorts of history lessons and interviews to watch. This site is amazing and I would have loved to have had such a source when I was in high school. Since the site is free it provides a great resource to those who don’t have the funds for a tutor.

iTunesU is a wonderful tool to be used in the classroom in many ways. As an educator one can use iTunesU to post lectures for all to view. This is great for your own classroom or to share with classes across the globe. It can be used to allow students to review a lecture outside of school, for parents to watch and see what their children are learning, or for students that may miss class on a review day. Also, iTunesU can be used to show lectures from other educators at other schools and universities. Another one of the many advantages is that students can use iTunesU on their mobile devices and ipods; this comes in handy for students on the go. What could be better than learning while jogging or driving?

TED is another non-profit site full of material to be shared. From bird watching to second hand shopping, this site has a lot to offer. “Ideas worth sharing” is the statement for TED. It couldn’t be summed up better. There are so many great videos that I wasn’t sure where to even start. You can navigate through the site by choosing between the categories of themes, speakers, talks, and translations. Once choosing your category you are then given hundreds of videos to choose from. This “free knowledge” is great for all classrooms. Teachers can now share ideas with their students from real people across the world.

2. Kahn Academy offers collections of Algebra practice problems and equations. There are several topics to choose form like, science, algebra, humanities and other, test prep, and talks and interviews. There are many sub-categories under these topics. There are videos offered that show how to work different sorts of math problems and videos explaining the current unemployment dilemma. Teachers should take advantage of this site by using the videos in the classroom to enhance the learning on any particular topic. For example, in chemistry the teacher could show a video on electron configurations before the lecture to give the students a better understanding.

There are some great collections on iTunesU, this makes it difficult to sum up what it has to offer. I decided to search education and received hundreds of results. Everything from special education to education in Ireland popped up. One can basically search any subject and receive results. These collections can be used to by the students to extend their learning on particular topics. They can watch and listen to these videos on their ipods and bring them anywhere. Teachers can also easily use these videos in their classes to help students on a difficult part of a lesson.

The TED site has so many ideas to share that it is almost overwhelming. I personally found it hard to navigate this site and find exactly what I was looking for. I came across some very inspirational talks and some enlightening videos. I think that this site is great for adding some fun in the classroom. The selection is quite broad. There is no doubt that one could find something on any particular topic, they may just have to look hard to find it. 

3. On the Kahn Academy site I watched a video on Chinese Inflation. The video begins with the definition of different types on inflation and then explains how inflation works. The video is basically breaking down an article from the New York Times. This is extremely helpful. I understand inflation but did not grasp all of the terminology until watching this video. It explained that China is printing more money in order to keep it devalued but this raises the question, "is this causing inflation?" I found this video to be very educational and I would use it to explain inflation to my students. Student may be more apt to grasp the concept of inflation if it were related to the current economy, as done in this video. 

On iTunesU I watched a video on Earth. There are many other videos on the other planets and each gives particular facts on that planet. I would have loved to know about this when I was in geography. Watching the video puts it more into perspective. It shows the sun rising while the earth is on it's axis and shows the orbit of the moon around the earth. This video would be very helpful for students, along with the videos on the other planets. Watching it, to me, rather than reading about it in a book is much more helpful. 

I watched the video Bill Ford: A future beyond traffic gridlock on TED. Bill Ford's great grandfather was Henry Ford. Bill Ford speaks of his experiences throughout life and working for Ford. He mentions that his grand-father wanted to make cars affordable for the everyday person. Bill has had a passion for cars since he was a boy, and now has an environmental passion that he wants to combine with his passion for cars. After being accused of being the enemy and creating so much pollution, Bill decided to join Ford and make his cars green like never before. Being able to watch the Henry Ford's grandson speak really makes you pay attention. I believe that it will do the same for students. Also, sharing the ambition of Bill with students can really make an impact on them. 

4. With the Khan Academy site I could all sorts of information with my students. This site gives educators endless opportunities to enlighten our students and give them an exciting learning experience. I would use this site to put more emphasis on harder topics being discussed in class. Some find civics to be difficult to understand and with the large number of videos on this site I could show my student videos on our current government to better explain how everything works. 

As an educator, I would use  iTunesU to post some of my lectures so that students can review at home. This will give students a better chance at succeeding in the classroom. Posting my lectures will also help parents know what their child is learning in school and help them help their children. Another tool that is great on iTunesU are the videos posted by renowned professors all over the world. These can be used to elaborate on any given topic and gather another perspective. 

I would use TED to keep my student interested in what they are learning. There are some great videos on so many different topics. I would love to use this site to possibly show a different video every week to inspire my students in different way or to give them an "idea". Sharing the ideas of others could be fun for the class and hopefully keep them motivated. 

5. This assignment has in fact surprised me. The information gathered through this assignment has surprised me. What great tools to be used in the classroom! This is a great example of why technology is important in the classroom. These sites will, with out a doubt, help students excel in school. Students are able to have their own private tutor on their computer or watch their own teacher give a lecture they may have missed. Once I become a teacher I will use these sites in my classroom and share them with my students so that they have to opportunity to learn and have fun using these sites. 

Blog Assignment 10

picture of colored pencils

In the post “Don't Let Them Take Pencils Home” there is a problem being presented and then the solution. Gertrude explains to Tom that there has been a study done stating that students that use pencils at home have lower test scores. Toms develops a solution. He develops the parent pencil program to teach parents how to use pencils in an educational sense and not just for fun and entertainment. He states that he can’t “hold them accountable” he can just “find projects that keep them interested.

This is a great lesson to live by as an educator. When presented with a problem, find the solution. Instead of either ignoring the problem or eliminating it by simply not allowing the students to take home the pencils, Tom embraced this problem and found a great solution. In low-income areas there are situations where parents work late and aren’t home a lot or children getting involved in crime and drugs. The idea of having the students and their parents work on projects together with their pencils serves a dual purpose. Not only does it help the parents but it occupies the students and keeps them from trouble and also gives them time with their parents. No one can monitor and make sure that the projects are done, but just giving the idea and taking the time to develop the projects is a great start.

In the video “Do You Teach or Do You Educate?” the meaning of being a teacher and being an educator are laid out very clearly. I want to be an educator, as assume most do. It takes more to be an educator; it takes more drive and more passion. I would like for my future students to see me as someone that is there for them and can give them advice on life, a mentor.

I want to teach my students all of the necessary materials and also learn that they can be successful and accomplish anything that they want. This is an important lesson to learn these days. With the rate of students dropping out of school rising students need guidance and positive reinforcement regularly to encourage them to reach the goals they set for themselves, and educators are there to help them reach those goals.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Blog Assignment 9

In the article What I've Learned This Year, by Mr. McClung, there are many helpful topics. Mr. McClung first brings up the importance of keeping the students interested in your lectures. Instead of trying to please your boss and superiors we as teachers should focus on the students and how they react to the lectures. I believe that this is something that is extremely important to remember when we get our first classroom. Many get lost while trying to capture the attention of their superiors rather than making their lessons "student centered". Another important topic is communication. Communicating with others in the work place and with the students is pertinent to keep the work place pleasant. I myself have experience some work place drama and for the longest time I couldn't figure out why one of my co-workers had such a problem with me, after communicating with her about the issue it was then resolved. It was a very minor issue but could have turned into something terrible had we not sat down and discussed it with one another. 
picture of best teacher

Another one of the many topics discussed in this article is how to be reasonable with the goals that you set for your students. Mr. McClung says that "we forget that we are dealing with children". Also, we have to remember that they are not perfect. When teachers set their goals to high for the student and the student fails to meet that goal then both the student and the teacher are disappointed. We need to maintain reasonable expectations for students so that they aren't let down in the end. This is difficult because we want our students to go above and beyond and believe that they can accomplish anything. Finally, Mr. McClung says that we should not be afraid of technology. I believe that so many adults are afraid of technology and this could be because they have never been taught how to use any of it and are intimidated. I understand the feeling. Before taking EDM 310 I had no clue of how edit a video or even how to post one. There are so many great innovative technologies today that teachers have access to and they should be utilized. 

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Project 7

The topic for my form was "Television Favorites". I wanted to find out peoples favorite actors, shows, and what types of television people are watching these days. In my first question I asked, "What is your favorite television show?" A majority chose other while "The Real Housewives" and "Greys Anatomy" tied for second. Another question was "Who is your favorite actor?" Neil Patrick Harris and Hugh Laurie tied for first and Charlie Sheen and Patrick Dempsey tied for last.
pie chart on favorite actors
The next obvious question was "who is your favorite actress?" The options being Ellen Pompeo, Miley Cyrus, Leighton Meester, and Kate Walsh. The unexpected winner was Miley Cyrus, tied in second was Ellen Pompeo and Leighton Meester, and with no votes was Kate Walsh.
Pie chart on favorite actresses
"Do you watch Soap Operas?" was my next question. There was an overwhelming 100% that voted no. Another very important question in television is "Do you prefer Conan O'Brien or Jay Leno?" Conan won with 63% and Jay Leno had 38%. Also, with all the reality television going on these days I had to ask if they preferred reality TV over regular TV. 75% of the people surveyed answered no and 25% answered yes. When asked "why or why not?" people mainly said they would rather watch regular television to escape from reality. 
I can see how these survey documents could be very helpful in the classroom setting. They allow the teacher to gain feedback on so many topics whether it be regarding their teaching skills or what the students had learned during the class. Receiving the feedback in such an organized manner is very helpful and interesting to look at. 

Blog Assignment 8

Student at a computer

This is How We Dream Parts 1 and 2
1. In these videos Richard Miller gives many examples of how writing is changing with technology. He and his class had put together many different projects using these tools. These projects were enhanced with pictures and videos, which in my opinion makes reading about different topics much more entertaining. The possibilities are endless with this type of writing. Also, collaborating with others on the computer about these topics is something that was shown in the video. Having your work on the computer makes it much easier to share your ideas and work with others, whether it be to colleagues or friends.

There was an example of a documentary of whale killings. The article was enhanced with many pictures relating to this topic. If I were to read an article without the videos and pictures I would be much less moving. Actually seeing how such an event takes place really puts it into perspective for someone who had no knowledge on that particular topic. The amount of information that can be relayed through the different forms of multimedia is infinite. Using this technology to advance writing will ultimately result in a more captivated audience who will be more educated in the end.

Carly Pugh's Blog Post
2. Carly has done an outstanding job at creating a wonderful YouTube playlist. This a lot like what I pictured being done when I watched Richard Miller's videos. She has taken so many videos that are relevant to her topic and put them into an article that focuses on inspiration.

This is such a fantastic thing to do for your classroom. This would grasp the students attention and really keep them inspired. This really shows Carly's passion for teaching and wanting her students to be great. I believe the videos could be really influential to students, much more so than a piece of paper the says something along the lines of, "It is great to have you in my class and this is what I expect of you...". Students will respond to her devotion to teaching and her inspirational writing.

The Chipper Series  and EDM 310 for Dummies
3. These videos are really entertaining and informative for this class. I remember before starting this class all I heard were all of these horror stories about EDM 310 and how time consuming it is. I never really heard about all of the great things that you get to do in this class. In the "EDM 310 for Dummies" video the students in the video pointed out some really fun things that we have learned to do in this class. I would want to make a video on "The Good Side of EDM310". I would want discuss all of the fun things the students were assigned to do and also how rewarding this class is. I have created so many fun videos and a blog. I never thought that I would be able to do any of this and now after this class I will no longer be intimidated by technology.

Learn to Change, Change to Learn
4. This video is saying that teachers need to embrace this technology instead of running away from it and banning it from schools. The technology of today has the capabilities of enhancing a students learning experience and going above and beyond of any learning experience in the past. Students today are interested in learning about these tools and using Facebook, Twitter, Email, Texting, etc. Why not use these resources to teach? Why not embrace this new way of teaching?

Most teachers today are afraid of these technological advances because they themselves have never been exposed to them or learned about them. Going through EDM 310 has really changed my perspective on the educational process. We always hear, learning should be fun and exciting, well this is how we do just that. We use the technology that we have access to and use it in our classrooms and teach it to our students.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Project 11

Project 10

photo of symbaloo icon

I decided to use Symbaloo for my Personal Learning Network (PLN). I started using Symbaloo during the first week of class. I learn something new that this website can do everyday. Symbaloo makes my life so much more organized. I have organized all of my icons in categories, this really helps me navigate quickly and not have to type in a particular websites every time I have switch to a different page. I also like how there is a google search box right in the center. This comes in handy quite often. One aspect of Symbaloo that I really like is the New Highlights tab. There are many different pictures on this tab and if you just scroll over each with the mouse a brief description of that story pops up. The shopping tab is also fantastic. I am able to put all of the website that I use frequently under this tab. I pretty much never have to type in a website, I just go to my Symbaloo on my homepage.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Project 3

In A GeekyMomma's Blog by Lee Kolbert, she discusses what it is that makes someone a good teacher. She brings up the topic of comprehensive assessment in the classroom and how well students do on these assessments. Do the scored made really reflect what kind of teacher you are? I don't believe so. I think that if you are compassionate about what you are teaching and really care about your students and their success then that makes you a good teacher. Doing everything that you can as an educator in order to ensure the success of a student is was being a teacher is all about. Test scores should be the deciding factor as to whether or no someone qualifies as a good educator. There are other things that are much more important in the classroom. Making learning fun in the classroom is a great way to keep students interested and keep them participating in the classroom. This semester I have already learned many different forms of technology that can be used to keep students attention and help them want to learn.
Picture of an apple
In another post by Lee Kolbert, she discusses different ways to continue learning through the summer. She really shares some great ideas such as attending a conference or using a Personal Learning Network (PLN). These are great ways to stay connected with other educators that are just as interested in improving their teaching skills as you are. There are many conferences that are offered throughout the summer. This makes it very convenient for teachers. Educators are able to attend these conferences and learn and share ideas on how to improve their classrooms from people who have already practiced these methods of teaching. Also, the PLN is a wonderful to stay in contact with many other educators and stay connected throughout the year. Lee Kolbert brings up some great topics in her blog and really has a lot of useful information to share. 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Blog Assignment 7

When Dr. Pausch seems like a really great person. When he showed the pictures of his tumors I was in shock. He looks like a perfectly healthy man and even did several pushups on stage to show that he was in better shape than most of the people in the audience. Throughout his lecture you really come to know him as a man with great perseverance. He is not one to take no for an answer or to easily give up on anything.

He begins his lecture by discussing his list of childhood dreams, some of which were quite comical. The first on his list was to experience zero gravity. He had a team of students that worked very hard to get a chance to ride one the “Vomit Comet”. This is a type of plain that is used to help train the astronauts and allows one to experience zero gravity. His team ended up winning the opportunity to ride on the “Vomit Comet”. Dr. Pausch was soon informed that the professor was not allowed to go with his students. He then discovered that a journalist was allowed to attend. He then did the proper paperwork and was allowed to go. This example alone shows the drive that he has to accomplish his goals that he has set for himself.

picture of Dr. Randy Pausch
Another childhood dream of his was to have an article published in the encyclopedia. He eventually accomplished this goal when he had an article on virtual reality published. It was really funny to see the picture of the set of encyclopedias that he had on his presentation. My grandparents still have a full set at their house. I remember when I was in grade school I had to go to my grandparents house to use the encyclopedias in order to write certain papers. It is crazy to think that now we can just go to google and type in any topic and get endless amounts of information. In fact, some teachers today tell you to google a topic and write about it. It is really fascinating how far we have come in such a short period of time.

I really liked his perspective on the “brick wall”. Dr. Pausch says that the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t really want it and for the ones who really want it, it is there “to give us a chance to show how badly we want something”. This is something that I can relate to. My husband is a perfect example of someone who has gone above and beyond to achieve his goals that he has set for himself. This is something that everyone experiences at some point in their life and they either choose to walk away or to put forth that extra effort and really succeed at their dream.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Blog Assignment 6

1. The Networked Student by Wendy Drexler
At the end of the video the question, "why does the networked student even need a teacher?" was asked. Throughout the video this is exactly what I was thinking. Why would a student that can get any information necessary online and watch podcast from some of the most successful professors, need me? I have taken a few online classes before and they were very confusing. Without the teacher I would have been completely lost. When reading instructions to an assignment online I would always wonder if I was doing everything correctly.
No matter what the classroom situation may be you need a source person, this being the teacher. There has to be someone there to answer your questions and help you with your concerns. In the video if there weren't a teacher then the student wouldn't be familiar with all of the possibilities that are available online. The video also mentioned that the teacher would help the student with organization and how to properly write to other professors.

2. A 7th Grader's Personal Learning Environment (or PLN)
This particular 7th graders is incredibly organized and prepared. My brother is in the 7th grade and he comes home with several binders and books with pages falling out everywhere. If he had the knowledge that this 7th grader has he would be much more organized. This makes everything so convenient. To have everything in one place make everything so much easier.
personal learning environment
For this class, EDM310, I have everything on my lap top and ready to go. This makes doing the assignments required so much easier. I am able to just grab my lap top and take it to work, school or to my parents and know that I have everything that I need to complete my work. Since everything is online then that means that anyone can see your work, this makes you really want to do your best and make everything look nice. In the video she mentions that everything looks nice since it is done on the computer. This is true. I really enjoy doing these projects because they look so great once you are finished. I believe that these are great tools that need to be implemented in our school systems.

3. Tech and Learning is an article that I found that discusses some of the useful tools that can be used in a classroom with a SMART Board. Amber Price, the author of "Ten Ways to Get Smart With SMART board", writes about many different ways to be interactive with the classroom with a SMART board. She explains that she plays games with her classroom and does interactive worksheets. I was in a history classroom that had a SMART board and the teacher used it for powerpoint presentation. It seemed useful with all of the pictures and interactive websites that she incorporated into the powerpoint.
In Why Smartboards are a Dumb Initiative, by Michael Staton, he expresses that he believes that SMART boards are a waste of money. I can see where he is coming from. It does seem as if the SMART board is just a more expensive white board. I really believe that this depends on what sort of classroom you have. I think a SMART board is a great way to get students interacting and allowing them to play educational games as a class. Also, if you are using certain web pages to educate students the SMART board could be very useful for displaying the web pages and using the web page in front of the class.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Project 9a

Blog Assignment 5

podcasting symbol

1. The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom really shows the conveniences of using podcasting and vodcasting in schools. When I was a student at The University of Alabama I was out of school for over a week due to a knee injury. During that week, since I was unable to attend class, I was able to listen to a podcast for each of my classes. This allowed me to stay up to date on lectures and note taking. Once I was able to go back to class I was fully prepared to the exams and didn't feel behind.
Students really get stressed out about missing school because they will then get behind and possibly miss a study guide needed for an upcoming test. This could be prevented if podcasting is used in the classroom. Also, students can use the podcast as a review before a test to refresh their memory before taking an exam. I liked how the sixth grade social studies teacher used the podcast. He had other teachers help him develop the podcast and they all read in character. He also added some sound affects. This is a good way to help students better understand a story and be more interested.

2. Judy Scharf Podcast Collection really has a lot of helpful information and videos on how to start your own podcast. In "What is a podcast?" she explains that you can watch it on your computer or on a MP3 player. Being able to listen to a lecture while running, driving or walking to class is such a great convenience. Also, students are able to share what they have learned and their ideas through the podcast. This could really be helpful to the other students in the classroom. Sometimes hearing information from a fellow students perspective can really help a student understand the content much better. 
Under "Tips to Succeed", number three says to allow to students to pick who they would like to work with on the podcast. I agree and disagree with this. I think that students should learn to get along with everyone in the class and allowing the students to choose groups could lead to some students being left out. This is a great project that could be used to learn the information need, but to also learn to work with others to reach the same goal. 

3. The Eagles' Nest Radio and Class Blog is great. I really enjoyed looking at their blog and listening to their podcast. I can really tell that they enjoy taking part in their blog and I'm sure they learn a lot throughout the process. It's amazing how professional the students are in articulating their words and using different sound effects. I think that this is a great tool to be used in all classrooms for students of all ages. These students will have a lot of the technological knowledge needed before entering college. I think that having that extra skill will go a long way. It will be one less thing they will have to worry about when they become a freshman in college. 
The way the these students do their podcast really catch your attention. It makes the topic more interesting than just sitting in your room and reading it from a book. This way students can go home, turn on their computer and listen to their podcast that they created and learn everything that they need to know on a subject. Also, on Mrs. E's blog, she has great tutorials and information that both the students and parents can use to study for test and stay caught up on lessons. 

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Blog Assignment 4

ipod nanos

Scott McLeod is an Associate Professor at Iowa State University. He has won many awards for his work in technology. In his article, Don't Teach Your Kids This Stuff. Please?", I really enjoyed the sarcasm. He makes very important points on different ways students will be behind if they have no access to technology. Children need an opportunity to learn about how to use technology so that they are ready for the real world. There are ways to protect children from the sexting and cyperbullying. Parents and teacher just need to be cautious and monitor how the children are using the technology, which leads to teaching them the proper way to use technology. 
Students should know how to create things online and how to share them. This is all part of the real world. They will be emailing, social networking, creating power points and many other things related to technology in the real world. Why not use the class room for the reason it was created, to prepare students for their futures? Technology is part of their future so it should be a part of their curriculum. 

2. The iSchool Initiative by a high school senior
The iSchool Initiative is a great answer to all of the budget cut happening in school systems across the country. Our school have to spend insane amounts of money on books and supplies for students. Parents of these students also have to spend a lot of money on supplies for school. I know when I was in high school I had to have a graphing calculator, it cost my parents almost $200.00. Had the iSchool been available I am sure that my parents would have preferred to spend the $150.00 on the iSchool, that has much more useful capabilities than a graphing calculator that I was going to use for one class. 
This one device could be used for numerous things that students need to stay organized as well as a source of information. The slide show showed numerous apps that could be added to the iSchool. For example, the periodic table app, president app, graphing calculator app and a planet app. All of these apps could be very useful to many students for many subjects. Another piece of information that was pointed out was that the internet would be limited to certain sites that are appropriate for the students. This product could be the key to the problems occurring in our public school system. 

3. You Can't Be My Teacher by Darren Cannell
This video shoes that children are really interested in learning through technology. How could they be prepared for life if they aren't trained to use technology? The video brings up the point that educators need to know how to use things like Facebook, Twitter and internet in general. These social networking web sites are great ways to put out important information for your students to learn and have access to. 
Another point brought up in this video was learning to be safe on the internet. I think that this is the main fear that parents have when their children have access to technology. This is a legitimate concern for parents. As educators this should be the first lesson taught before giving students access to the internet. They should understand all of the real dangers involved and how to be safe, cautious and smart. Parents need to understand that their children ultimately need these skills to be able to survive in the real world. 

This video is amazing. I can't believe that someone was able to put something like this together. It sounded beautiful. It's almost hard to believe that none of those people had ever met. It was a video made with 185 people singing the same song but had never met. Using technology, it was put together to seem like a choir of 185 people singing together. It's amazing what people can do when they have the knowledge and access to such amazing technology.
This is such a great example of creative projects that can be made using technology. Students can have the opportunity to learn how to create these types of projects or any sort of topic that interest them. This is something students would enjoy doing and would learn from it along the way. The students would also have a final product that will last forever and they can be proud of. 

This video really speaks the truth about what we as educators are really being used as in the 21st century. The video says, "teachers are no longer the main source of knowledge". I don't completely agree with that statement. I think that educators are needed in the 21st century to guide students in the right direction and give them the information that they need to have in order to be prepared for college or life in general. Google is a great search engine for information but, students do need to know how to to use google and know how "validate information" given to them by google.
Laptops and ipods are great tools to be used in the classroom. I believe that students can still collaborate with one another through the internet and through blogging. Blogging is a great tool that could be utilized by the teacher to keep students and parents up to date on what is going on in the classroom. I think that students would be both entertained and engaged if they were able to work with laptops in their classrooms. I also agree with what it says in the video about the temptation when using technology. If a student is using a laptop or paper and pencil there is still going to be that temptation to be distracted. 

Special Assignment 1

1. Did you know about WolframAlpha? 
No. I had never heard anything about it. 
2. Did you know about Google Squared?
3. What percentage of China's population is the population of the United States?
There is a population of 1.35 billion people in China and there is a population 309 million in the United States. This makes the Unites States less than 23% of Chinas population.
4. What percentage of India's population is the population of the United States?
India's populations is 1.21 billion compared to the United States, which is 309 million. This means that the  United States is less than 26% of India's population. 
5. Now what do you think of the facts reported in Do You Know? 
The information given really helps put how fast our world is growing into perspective. I really enjoyed reading all of the facts presented. 
6. Do you think WolframAlpha and Google Squared will be useful for you? for your students? Why or why not?
I think both of these search engines would be very helpful to students. On WolframAlpha, there are charts that go along with information presented. This will help students learn to read graphs and us them in their research. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

My Life in a Conch Shell

Project 3

Student taking test

In David Wees's blog he discusses the issue of ebooks. One issue that he brings up is the fact that a lot of students do not have access to the technology needed in order to use an ebook. Some schools are making these adjustments to give students the technology needed. Sometimes this involves laying off teachers so that the school system can afford things like computers. Another problem that is brought up is the pricing of the ebooks. Wees says that the publishers of these ebooks price them the same as the hard copies and even expect the school to buy multiple copies if they plan to have multiple students using them. The ebooks also sometimes have an expiration date, where if a hard copy were purchased the school would then own the book. 
I agree with most of the points that Wees has made on the subject of the ebook. They would be more environmentally friendly but there is the issue that still stands of affordability. I also brought up the point that I would be more likely to read a book if I had a hard copy of that book. This I believe is because I grew up in a educational system where we used hard copy books, this being because there weren't ebooks then. I do believe that this could be a cost effective solution if the publishers would give a little on the pricing and the money saved could be used on new technology for students. In conclusion, ebooks have the potential to be a great tool, but until they are cost effective then this is not an option for most school systems. 
Another topic brought up by David Wees is "Assess what students can do". He himself is a programmer and has made a good bit of money in doing this, but he says that he would not pass an exam on programming. Wees says that he would not be able to regurgitate the information needed to pass an exam without referring to different source material. He brings up that people in the professional world are not required to do their jobs on only information that they have memorized, they are allowed to use different sources to complete any given task. So why are students required to memorize information for their exams?
Is memorization really learning? I don't believe so. Students should be able to use different source material on their exams like, notes, study guide or a note card. A physics teacher also commented on this particular blog posting and she puts the equations needed to complete the exam on the exam for the students to use. This would allow students to really learn the information that they need to know rather than spending all of their study time trying to memorize equations. There isn't an occupation that comes to mind that requires a person to completely memorize the information needed in order to complete any task that is required of them, so why is this required of us as students?

Monday, June 6, 2011

Blog Assignment 3

Picture of my dog Samson

1. Michael Wesch: A Vision of Students Today
In the video, A Vision of StudentsToday, it is really put into perspective how much time we actually spend throughout the day doing assignments for school and how much time we spend using technology. Something that stood out to me was the girl who held up the sign that said, "18% of my teachers know my name". I have been at South Alabama for over a year now and I can only name one teacher that would actually remember my name. This isn't because I don't participate, because I do, this is because the class sizes are so large that it would be impossible for any one person to remember that many students names.
In the beginning the video says, " if students learn what they do, what are they learning sitting here?" I completely agree with that statement. I learn much better when I am actually experiencing what I am learning. It is much harder to comprehend something while sitting in a classroom and listening to a teacher explaining how to do something. For example, when I was in Geography lecture and lab, we would learn the information in lecture first and then actually do it in lab. I wouldn't fully comprehend any of the information until I experienced it in the lab. I think that all classrooms should operate this way as much as possible.
The video itself was very informative and I liked how they presented all of the facts with the students sitting in the classroom. The camera was pretty unstable and it was hard to read some of the facts. I think that it could have been improved in that sense, but otherwise it was great.
2. "It's Not About the Technology" by Kelly Hines
I agree with Kelly Hines in her articles, It's Not about the Technology. It's not about the technology. Technology is a fantastic tool that can be used to enhance the learning experience and in some cases help us learn more information. Hines states in her article that, "teacher must be learners". We as teachers need to know what are students are doing so that we can know how to teach them. Dr. Strange asked our class on the first day, who has Facebook? We asked, why do we need to know how to use twitter and how to use a blog. Dr. Strange then explained that these are the technologies that out students will be using.
We as teachers can use our blog, Facebook, and Twitter as ways to reach our students and keep them interested in what is going on in our classrooms. These won't be utilized if the teachers are not trained to use them. Teachers should be given the opportunity to learn how to use these technologies so that they can be used to enhance the students learning environment.
3. Karl Fisch: Is It Okay to Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher?
In the article, Is It Okay To Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher? by Karl Fisch, he argues that it is becoming harder and harder to become successful in life if you are technologically illiterate. I agree. Times are changing and we as teachers should be open to adapting to these changes. Learning these new technologies ultimately makes our lives easier. Fisch explains that people that could not read and write could still be successful in the early 20th century. He then goes on suggest that if we are unwilling to become technologically literate then we are the equivalent of a teacher that could not read or write 30 years ago. 
This is an extreme notion, but a very true one. We have to adapt to our surroundings if we want to make an impact. I can't even remember the days when I didn't have an iphone and couldn't find out any bit of information in 5 seconds, thanks to google. Technology is something that should be used to our advantage. We should learn it and we should use it. 
4. Gary Hayes Social Media Count
Social Media Count is one of the craziest things I have ever seen. The use of technology today is outstanding. Almost every second someone buys an ipad and there were over 800 new Twitter accounts in just over 23o seconds. You don't realize how much technology is used globally in just 60 seconds. With this rate of change how could anyone survive being technologically illiterate? I don't think that it is possible, in any career. As a teacher I would like to be able to reach my students on many different levels. I obviously want to make an impact and be a good teacher, but I also want to be able to take the technology that I have at my disposal to create a better learning environment for my students. 
My brothers is in the 7th grade. His teacher has a blog with all of their assignments, podcast with lessons, and even tutorials on how to do the homework to help parents. This is amazing to me. I couldn't even imagine having something like that when I was in middle school. I asked my brother what he thought of the blog, he explained that it was extremely helpful to him and he uses it daily. He also uses it to talk to his classmates so that they can communicate on different topics talked about in class. Technology is a great think for teacher and should be implemented in classrooms. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Blog Assignment 2

Sunset over Mobile Bay

1. Did you know? 3.0
In the video Did You Know 3.0, Karl Fisch and Scott McLeod outlined many of the technological advances made throughout the past 25 years or so. It is hard to comprehend that our world has advanced so quickly in such short period of time. The fact that I found most fascinating was that the top ten jobs of 2010 did not even exist in 2004. It is almost scary to think that some of the technology being developed will be smarter than the human brain.
Also, the world population is developing so quickly. During the video 395 babies were born in India. This is a baffling number. The video shared so many interesting facts and really puts into perspective how far the world has come in just the past twenty years.

2. Mr. Winkle Wakes
When Mr. Winkle woke up after 100 years everything was different. The way buildings were built, the technology, hospitals, everything had changed. The technology shown in the video Mr. Winkle Wakes are things that I don't even notice as new technology. For example, in the hospital where there were machines keeping the people alive. This is something that I have grown use to seeing in a hospital so I don't even realize how amazing the technology that we have is.
Mathew Needleman did a great job capturing the advancements that we use everyday and take for granted sometimes. Talking to someone on Skype for example is something that we have become accustomed to using. Seeing someone on a computer screen, or these days a cell phone, from as far as another country is an everyday occurance.

3.Sir Ken Robinson: The Importance of Creativity
Ken Robinson's video, The Importance of Creativity, is very entertaining and also enlightening. I really like how he put "children are educated out of creativity". I agree with Sir Robinson to a certain extent. I do believe that in public education today there is a lack of focus on developing creativity and is more focused on the intellectual aspect of education. I believe Sir Robinson put it as they are being molded into college professors. Students need to be encouraged to practice their creativity and feel that they are good at something and proud of anything they create on their own, whether it be a painting, music or performance.
Considering that the whole entity of public education was created to meet the need of industrialism. Students were persuaded to not study to be a musician or artist, they were influenced to study the "most useful subject for work". This was because they were told they couldn't make a living doing the things that they enjoyed, they would never make living as an artists of performer. Today I do believe that there are more and more efforts made to enhance creativity in the public school system. There are several private schools based on the arts, we need to take these ideas and put them into the public school system.

4. Cecelia Gault (Young Student in Finland) Interviews Sir Ken Robinson
In the video, Scholastic Article, Robinson says that everyone is creative and he doesn't believe that only certain people are born with creativity. Also, technology should be utilized in schools so that students can understand computers and their many uses. In just the beginning of EDM 310 I have learned how to do many things on the computer that I never would have dreamed of being able to do. I assumed that I was just not one of those people that could understand the ins and outs of a computer and all of its capabilities.
In Cecilia Gault's article she mentions that we as a country need to catch up with the leader in education, such as Finland. This is true, if our drop out rate is 25% and Finland is less than 1% then we need to change something. Why can't we practice the techniques in our schools that are being put into practice in Finland and see if we can improve our drop out rate. I believe that if a problem is getting worse then try something else, quickly.

5. Vicki Davis: Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts
In Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts, Vicki Davis teaches her students how to use technology to their advantage. She believes that when students are limited to pencil and paper then they are in turn limited to what that can learn and achieve. I agree with this. With drastic change in technology in just the past 10 years students should be given the opportunity to learn how all of this new technology can be used to their advantage. Also, using the technology is more fun for the students to use then just pencil and paper and they then want to learn more and more.
The students in this video are connected to other students all over the world and have learned how to interact with them through technology. They have been given an opportunity by Vicki Davis to learn new trends all over the world and they seem to be taking full advantage. When I was in high school we had nothing like this. The only computer course we had was keyboarding, learning to type. This class is an example of how far we have come in just the past 8 years.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Blog Assignment 1

My name is Lucinda Prescott, but I go by Cinda. I am the oldest of 4 siblings. I was born in Key West, FL where my father was in the Navy. I lived there with my Mom and Dad until I was four. We then moved to Baldwin County where my parents are both from. After I graduated from Daphne High School I moved to Tuscaloosa where I attended the great University of Alabama. I started my college career as an Interior Design major, this ended up changing several times. I met my husband, Jason Prescott, at U of A who is currently an engineering major at South Alabama. He is also from Fairhope but, we did not meet until attending U of A. While we were dating he joined the Coast Guard which ironically, led him to be stationed in Key West. We were then married in Key West and we lived there together for about a year. We were then relocated to New Orleans for two year and now back to Fairhope. I am now finishing up my degree in Secondary Education-Social Science.
Picture of my husband and I
I have always thought about having a career in Education and then after meeting my mother-in-law I was more influenced to do so since she had nothing but good things to say about being a teacher. She is now the Baldwin County Curriculum Supervisor but, was once a 5th and 6th grade teacher. I have other interests beside school. My husband and I have two beautiful Cocker Spaniels, Samson and Baylee. We also enjoy kayaking, the beach, trips to North Carolina, and fishing. The hobby I enjoy most is cooking and baking. I really like experimenting with different recipes and coming up with different flavored cupcakes for my family to try out.

In Dr. Pausch's video he brings up list making. I am a known list maker. I have them all over my house, whether it be a chore list (for my husband) or a homework list. I am terrible about putting the ugliest thing at the bottom of the list. From this video I have learned it is best to get the worst over with first. I am also terrible about only planning for the short term and not the long term. I need to set more goals and then focus on the steps required to accomplish those goals. I found this video to be very helpful.