Sunday, July 21, 2013

Blog Post #16

Never Stop Learning

Part One

At the beginning of the semester I imagined my elementary classroom as having a SMARTboard, iPads, and computers. I also imagined it to be colorful, creative, collaborative and fun. For the first two or three weeks, I didn’t’ really know how to incorporate technology in the classroom and I wasn’t very technologically literate. Throughout the semester in EDM310, Dr. Strange assigned us to use and discuss many tools for the classroom and when learning. In my future classroom, I want to use technology as much as possible. Technology changes constantly, which means we must change. I have learned that as a future educator, I must always be a lifelong learner.

After using the many tools encountered in EDM310, I know which tools I will continue using every day and in my future classroom. Technology is beneficial in the classroom for students and teachers. SMARTboards are a major tool in the classroom for teaching lessons, watching educational videos, etc. iPads apps are also a major tool. Students are able to learn and do activities on the iPads that are educational. There are also special needs apps to help accommodate special needs students. Another tool I will use in my classroom is Blogger. Blogging enables children to enhance their literacy skills and share their activities, pictures, and ideas all over the world. Parents, family members, other students and educators are able to comment on the student’s various activities they post on their blogs.

I also plan on using tools and resources such as Skype, iCurio, Discovery Ed., podcasts, Google Docs, Padlet and iMovie. I will use Skype so that my students can ask questions to other educators. I will use iCurio so that my students have the opportunity to use a safe search engine to search the web. Discovery Ed. Is also a useful tool to that gives text a visual aspect and brings the text to life. Podcasts, Padlet and Google Docs are also resources that I will use in my classroom. Another tool I will use is iMovie so that my students have the opportunity to make movies in collaborative projects, such as a green screen movie.

Technology plays an important role in the classrooms today. To be a successful teacher, you must be interested in learning. Therefore, you must be willing to be technologically literate because the technology is always changing. I have learned so much this semester that I will take with me throughout my education and future teaching career.

Part Two

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Blog Post #15


Anthony Capps is a former EDM 310 student and lab professional who excelled in Dr. Strange’s class. He has also become a great friend of Dr. Strange. Anthony Capps is a third grade teacher in Baldwin County and Dr. Strange sits down with him in these video calls discussing various different technology topics.

Lauren Macon

In the conversation with Dr. Strange, Anthony Capps describes his viewpoint of iCurio as a safe search engine that allows students to search websites that fit the Alabama State Standards. Not only does it allow you to search websites, it allows you to search images, videos, etc. that are pulled and filtered for educational uses. It also has two other components other than being a safe search engine for students. One component is a storage capacity for students and teachers. This is a great tool for teaching students organization so they can organize valuable content in files and folders. This is an advantage. If students have to leave iCurio to go to lunch, P.E., etc. they are able to save the website they were visiting so they can remember where they were. Another component is Timelines and Historical Features. Anthony talked about using Timelines in his classroom next year. You can search by criteria when using Historical Features. If a child is doing a project but they do not know much about it, they can simply search something like female, minority, astronaut. This is like a directory for historical figures which is important because students do not have background knowledge to know the names of all historical figures. iCurio also has an accessibility feature called Read Aloud. I thought it was interesting that Anthony said iCurio would be useful for any grade level that the teacher feels comfortable letting students search the web. In my future elementary classroom, I plan to use iCurio. It is not only a safe search engine, but it allows the students to search the web for websites and other media tools that fit the Alabama State Standards. I cannot wait to use this tool with my future students!

Discovery Ed-
Discovery Ed is a useful tool for project based learning that gives text a visual aspect. In the conversation, Dr. Strange talks to Anthony Capps about how he uses Discovery Ed in his classroom. Anthony says, “A picture is worth a thousand words, but a video must be worth a million.” Discovery Ed is worth that according to Anthony. He says that if a child has a visual text, they will retain a lot more. It is a great tool for social studies and science. For example, if they are doing a lesson on plants, the student can search “beautiful flowers” and it will give them a video to learn instead of just a picture. Discovery Ed gives the opportunity to bring experts into the classroom via video, which is crucial. Discovery Ed is beneficial for student searches so that they are able to enrich their research experience. It is also beneficial because it brings different texts to life and gives the opportunity of comparing and contrasting reading. Discovery Ed is a tool that I will use in my classroom. As Anthony said, the students will retain more when they are viewing something rather than just reading text.

The Anthony- Strange list of Tips for Teachers Part 1-
In the conversation between Dr. Strange and Anthony Capps, they discuss five things that every new teacher should think about and prepare for. This is a great list that I will keep in mind as I pursue my teaching career. The first five tips for teachers are:
1. BE A LEARNER- To be a successful educator, you must be interested in learning. Then, you must model it for others. This reminds me of what Dr. Strange says, “I don’t know, let’s find out.”
2. HARD WORK- Teaching is hard work, but there is no separation between playing and teaching. Teachers are still learning the craft of teaching in their free time. Teaching can be fun and fascinating if you let it be and in the end will be very rewarding.
3. FLEXIBILITY- When you are teaching, things will not always happen as planned, therefore you cannot be committed to one way of doing something. Teachers must be able to respond to unexpected events. For example, in Anthony Capps class, the servers were not working, so he had his students on the floor painting. Surprises like this always happen so we must be flexible.
“Start with the end in mind.” Start out with the end goal in mind, if it doesn’t look like what you intended, be flexible.
4. GET KIDS ENGAGED- Anthony Capps says you must have 100% engagement in your classroom. Teachers should not leave any child behind. To engage students, choose a content they are interested in, make it a process they want to use, let them discover something and get excited about it, and make it shareable so they have an audience to share their work with. There are many ways to get motivated. Each day, always think how you can get every one of your students involved in the learning process.
5. REFLECT- Self evaluation is important in the process of learning. Use audiences as a purpose to reflect and use critiques from the audience. Reflection needs to be the goal and an audience leads to reflection.

I learned five great tips that every teacher, including myself, should always remember when teaching. One fascinating thing Anthony Capps said was that, competition, pride, collaboration and purpose lead to more students reflecting and sharing their work as if it were gold. I enjoyed the conversations between Dr. Strange and Anthony Capps, especially the Strange list of Tips for Teachers-Part 1. I look forward to Part 2. Thank you Dr. Strange and Anthony Capps for sharing your knowledge and tips!

Caitlin Lankford

iCurio Baldwin County has started using iCurio in the schools. In the interview video of Dr. Strange and guest Anthony Capps, Capps describes what iCurio is and the many ways he uses the program in the classroom. Capps said that iCurio pulls safe websites for students to do research on for educational purposes. iCurio is also an easy way to store and organize virtual files and folders. Capps uses iCurio so that his students can get an early start on practicing organizational skills. Another way Capps uses iCurio in the classroom, is to make virtual timelines. For instance, if his classroom is studying historical figures, the students can look up the focus figure and find out what historical events were happening during their time. iCurio even allows read-alouds for students with reading disabilities. For my future classroom, I would love to use the timeline feature on iCurio so that my students can grasp a better understanding of what major historical facts happened.

Discovery Ed In another interview of Anthony Capps and Dr. Strange, Dr. Stange asks Capps to explain how he uses Discovery Ed in his classroom. Capps starts off by saying, “if a picture is worth a thousand words then a video must be worth a million and Discovery Ed is worth every bit of the million!” I love Capps’ quote!! Capps says that Discovery Ed is a great visual aid resource because students can use videos to enrich their research experience. The reason why is because, students using Discovery Ed don’t look up pictures relating to what they are learning, they look of videos to gain information. “Discovery Ed really brings text to life” says Capps, and that is so true!! Students won’t just read their text, but they will use visual aids to gain knowledge about their learning content. Capps’ students reacted to Discovery Ed in a positive way. They enjoy using Discovery Ed just as much as they love reading the actual text. They associate reading with visual aid learning. I would love to use Discovery Ed in my future classroom, so that my students will be able to expand their research experience!

An Additional Thought About Lessons- The last part of Anthony Capps’ and Dr. Stange’s interview video, Capps adding his thoughts on lesson plans. Capps said lesson plans are four layers thick with each layer meaning something different, but all of the same importance! the first layer is the year layer. In the year layer, where you question how the lesson plan fits into the year, and are you going to cover all of the content standards? The second layer is the unit and in the unit, the question that should be asked is are the unit projects devised in a way that is meaningful? The educator can not do all of the required activities and projects in one day, they should be spread over a time so that the student can understand and comprehend the learning content over a unit time which is usually six to eight weeks. For the third layer, the question that should be asked is how are you devising the projects so that they can be done weekly? The final layer is the daily lesson plan. For the daily lesson plan layer, the educator should think about how to deliver the material to the students so that they are hooked and engaged. The four components come together to make a lesson plan. I have never thought about seeing lesson plans as to having layers. After listening to Capps talk about the four components, I think I have a better understanding on lesson plans.

Melissa Canterbury

iCurio- iCurio ,according to Anthony Capps in his video call with Dr. Strange, is an online tool that allows students to not only search websites safely, but also other forms of media that has been filtered for educational purposes that adhere to the ACCRS and other State Standards. iCurio has two other major components as well as being a safe search engine for students. One great aspect of iCurio is that it has a storage capacity that not only allows teachers to store items, students can store content that they find valuable. iCurio allows students to start getting practice with virtual organization through the folders and files. Other great tools components of iCurio are features such as Timelines and Historical Figures. Anthony talks about how he plans to use Timelines more next year but that he has used a lot of the Historical Figures feature. iCurio has a directory feature with Historical Figures where what students do is type in keywords about a certain topic. For instance, if the students are doing a civil rights projects, they would type in “1960 African male”. This kind of directory is important because students do not have the background knowledge to know the names of historical features, that is what they are researching. What I found useful about what Anthony says about iCurio is that it can be used in any grade level! I will be teaching in the elementary classroom and plan to use it in my classroom because not only does it have safe text that has been filtered, there are a lot of other media that will engage the students! Great tool and I can’t wait to use it more and incorporate it into my classroom.

Discovery Education- One of the tools that Baldwin County has made accessible to educators now is Discovery Ed. Dr. Strange sits down with Anthony Capps in this YouTube video, to get Anthony’s thoughts on Discovery Ed in the classroom and why he thinks it’s a useful tool for Project Based Learning. “A picture’s worth a thousand words, and a video must be worth a million.” Discovery Ed is a great tool to backup a text with visual which helps the students retain more through visuals. Anthony talks about how he uses it with his students in their classroom. For instance, if they are doing a lesson on plants, Discovery Ed takes the students way farther than just a picture. Discovery Ed provides them with videos and brings in experts on topics via video. Anthony uses Discovery Ed in his classroom for student searches and he uses it to bring different texts to life. One fascinating fact that they talked about was that students retain more information when they are viewing something rather than just reading a text. The same goes as if students are engaged. I think Discovery Ed is a great tool to engage students in the lesson and a tool I can see myself incorporating in my future elementary classroom.

Don’t Teach Technology-Use It! - In Dr. Strange and Anthony Capps’ video, Use Tech, Don’t Teach It, Anthony talks about technology in his classroom. Our culture is so technologically based that there is no way to escape it. Whether adults are interested in technology or not, it just comes natural to children. An important way to incorporate technology into the classroom is to scaffold your tools and use different ones. Start with doing a small reflection on iMovie one week and then the next have them create a movie. Use technology to get your students excited about lessons, use it to let them share what they have created, and as a teacher, use different tools meaningfully. DON’T EXPECT PERFECTION! If you use a new tool, allow students time to reflect on what they have used and what they made mistakes on. I like how Dr. Strange’s class allows us to learn on our own, we actually learn it better and remember what we have done to master the skills. It will be the same way with elementary students, use technology with your students, don’t just teach it to them. I really enjoyed the talks with Anthony Capps, I like that he is a former EDM student and how far he has come in his career! Thank you Anthony for everything you have shared with us!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Blog Post #14- Marvelous Me!

Do you want to know about your classmates? Do you want to know about your teacher? I do! Dr. Strange asked us to create a blog post assignment titled "What Did I Leave Out?" At the beginning of the semester, our first practice blog post was to tell about ourselves. I was glad because then I could learn about my classmates and group members. But, I wanted a more creative and more visual aspect to it. When we were assigned this assignment, I thought of a great way to bring writing to life! If you were an elementary student, wouldn't you want that too? One of my teachers last semester, Mrs. Freeman, created a slideshow about her and showed it on our first day of class. I thought, I want to do this with my future students! I started thinking about a tool I discussed in one of my previous posts called PhotoPeach. PhotoPeach is an easy, engaging tool for creating slideshows.


1. Find images on Google or you can use images you already have that you would use to tell about yourself.
2. Save them for later use on PhotoPeach.
3. Create an account for PhotoPeach (FREE!)
4. Click Create New Slideshow: Upload Photos
5. You may upload as many photos as you would like by simply choosing them from a file.
6. Click Next.
7. Give your slideshow a title and a description.
8. Choose background music by scrolling through the music listed. If you don't like what they have, click on the Search YouTube tab and search music.
9. Click Finish.
10. Click the Edit tab to edit caption and photos, edit music and title, add photos, manage comments, delete show, or download the show.
11. Put your mouse over the right side of your slideshow and click the Embed in Blog button.
12. Copy and paste into your blog.
13. Be Creative! Have Fun! Tell about yourself!

Here is my slideshow!

Marvelous Me on PhotoPeach

C4T #4


In the post, "Transition Years" on Dorothy Burt's blog Manaiakalani, talks about the Manaiakalani Schools being in their fourth year of ensuring all year 5 to 13 students own their own digital device. I wish Mobile County was like this! This enables them to participate in a digital learning environment. The leaders of the junior class brainstormed ways they would like to experiment with such as starting individual blogging younger (great idea!), use desktops and tablets, have an older buddy class, having a Chromebook pod available, etc. Two schools reported back on the positive difference the Chromebooks were having in class. The children were confident in logging onto their Google apps. What an awesome opportunity these kids are getting! My comment was, "My name is Lauren Macon and I am a student in EDM310 at the University of South Alabama. Dr. Strange has assigned us to visit educator's blogs and to leave comments. The leaders of the junior class have brainstormed a list of great ideas! Blogging is something I want to do in my future elementary classroom. Having the older students help out the younger students is a great idea. I think it is exciting that young children are able to interact and use technology at such a young age. Children having confidence in technology is AWESOME! My first time blogging was this summer in EDM310. I never knew there was so much technology that could be used in a classroom. I enjoyed reading your blog and look forward to reading more!"

In the second post I commented on, "Next Step: ChromeBooks" Dorothy Burt talks about the positive user experience Manaiakalani Schools are getting from the use of ChromeBooks. Manaiakalani Schools ordered 700 of these spread across 11 schools and bought by children ages eight to eighteen years old. Wouldn't it be great if Mobile County had this opportunity? The students were included on the decision of switching to Chromebooks. They chose the Samsung 500 (WiFi only) model. She said the experience the children and teachers experience was delightful. She says, "That 8 minute boot, the ‘switch it on and it connects with the wifi and logs you into your account’, no fuss and start learning was such a pleasure to be part of." Six months later, she says the experience is still positive. I love this quote that she quoted by Adam Naor, "The Internet is the platform for learning." This is a great quote for EDM310. She also post some links to experience other teachers and students have shared. I commented, "I have never heard of a ChromeBook until your post! Interesting! Hopefully I will have the opportunity to use ChromeBooks in my future classroom. So exciting that there is such positive user experience."

Project #9 PLN Final Report

My Personal Learning Network (PLN), Symbaloo, has been exceedingly useful throughout the semester. I have all of my education websites in one place in the color red. The rest of my tiles are color coordinated as well. I have frequently used websites in pink, etc. This is helpful for me because I like to be organized. When I first created my Symbaloo, I didn't think I would use it that much. Now, I use it daily! (Thank you EDM310.) When I first created it, I added the Teaching Channel and TeacherTube. Now, I have Edutopia, Langwitches, Teaching With Soul, our EDM310 blog, Edudemic, and MattBGomez's blog. I will definitely continue adding more websites throughout my schooling and teaching!

Project #12 Part B

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Project #15

Blog Post #13

Ted Talks, Ideas Worth Spreading

What can we learn from these TED talks? -Dr. Strange

Throughout the semester, Dr. Strange has assigned our class different videos from TED talks for us to watch and summarize. What is TED talks though? Why are these videos important to us? TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) is a nonprofit organization that began in 1984 as a conference that brought people together from all around the technology, entertainment, and design worlds. TED holds two annual conferences that bring together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes or less. With more than 1400 talks and FREE, the mission of TED is to spread ideas. As young educators who are still learning, TED talks are important to us because they share thoughts and ideas from such brilliant people who have experienced situations we can learn from.

This week we were giving a list of 10 of these talks that Sir Ken Robinson picked as his favorite, and were assigned to choose three to summarize and evaluate.

Mae Jemison on teaching arts and sciences together - Lauren Macon

“The difference between science and the arts is not that they are different sides of the same coin even, or even different parts of the same continuum, but rather, they are manifestations of the same thing. The arts and sciences are avatars of human creativity.” - Mae Jemison

Mae Jemison is an astronaut, a doctor, an art collector, and a dancer who tells stories from her own education and from her time in space. In 1992, she was the first African American woman to go into space. She has a new vision of learning that combines science and art, intuition and logic.

Mae Jemison begins with three quotes:

“When God made the color purple, God was just showing off.” - Alice Walker

“Research is a formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose.” - Zora Neale Hurston

“If you don’t much care where you want to get to, then it doesn’t much matter which way you go.” - Lewis Carrol

Often when we think about the near future, we have an attitude of “whatever happens, happens.” Mae Jemison expresses that we should not have this attitude, that it does matter which way we go and what road we take. As a future educator and as a person in general, this is important to remember. She says that the most important issues for the future that we need to revitalize are the arts and sciences. What we do today, is important for the future because the world is going to be built on the ideas and creativity we came up with today. What are we contributing to that legacy? Mae Jemison says we are in a sense of failing in this. She quotes Frantz Fannon, “Each generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfill or betray it.”

Mae Jemison’s mission is to reconcile science and the arts. What is your mission? Many people think that science and art should be separated. I agree with Mae Jemison and think that they should be combined. Others think that scientist are not creative and that artist are not analytical. How can someone think this? Who wants to be uncreative? Who wants to be illogical? Not me!

Next, she talks about her childhood in the sixties. She wanted to be a hippie and resented the fact that she was too young to be a hippie. What she took away from the sixties was that there was hope for the future. There were ideas and creativity percolating. Things that are “cool” today, are ideas from back then. She then talks about how she always wanted to go into space. She loved fashion design, dance, and art. Mae Jemison was trying to figure out if she should go to medical school or New York to become a professional dancer. What a talented woman! But, she went into space instead.

In the rest of the video, she talks about the differences between art and science. The difference is the manifestation of the same thing. They are avatars from the human creativity. Science is a manifestation of our attempt to express or share our understanding. It is experienced by everyone. Art is a desire or attempt to influence others through experiences that are curious to us as individuals. They are all part of us. Our understanding, our resources, and our will become our outcome.

Mae Jemison is so passionate about integrating arts and sciences. Ideas are like potential energy, nothing will happen until we risk putting them into action. We must take responsibility for our future. In my future classroom, I will take the responsibility for integrating science and art. Often people think that art is not important in education. I think completely opposite! Creativity is needed everyday. It is what our future relies on and if we fail at that, then our future fails. I will encourage my future students to be creative, have new ideas, and put risks into action. Before watching this video, I would have never thought about combining art and science. It opened my eyes to realize that these two need to be integrated. One thing I learned from Mae Jemison, is “Science provides an understanding of a universal experience. Arts provide a universal understanding of a personal experience.”

Teaching One Child at a Time- Caitlin Lankford

Shukla Bose is the founder of Parikrma Humanity Foundation in India. For twenty six years, Bose worked in the corporate world and has never been trained to be an educator. However, one day she wanted to make a change in the education world and decided to educate children that live in the slums of India. There are 800 slums in India, and of the 800 slums, there are two million people living in those slums. Bose and her co-workers decided to walk through some of the slums to find out how many houses had children that did not go to school. They put their numbers together and found out that 200 million children, ages four to fourteen, should be going to school, but do not. There were 100 million children that went to school, but could not read, and 125 million children could not do basic math. However, Bose and her team did not want to play the number game anymore, and made an effort to make a change! They started their school during the month of June, in the slums, on a rooftop of a two-story building. When the school started in June, there were 165 children and Bose described it to be an amazing bonding experience, due to the excessive amounts of rain that month. Soon after the first school began, more schools started. There are now 1,100 children, four schools, and one junior college. Bose speaks about three myths that are believed in India. The first myth is that no one in the slums can speak English. She quickly responded by saying, that the myth is not true. Bose showed a video to the audience at the TED conference of two children speaking english. The girl that was in the video, talked about a few books that she enjoys reading and that she cannot put some books down once she begins reading them. The boy in the video, explained his desire to have a bike. Bose told the audience that he has not seen a bike in person, but has done plenty of research on Google to know interesting things about bikes. The dream of Parikrma Humanity Foundation is to educate children, but most importantly to calm the children and prepare them for the real world of chaos. People that are first introduced to the foundation, think that the curriculum being taught is too hard for the students, but Bose is quick to defend her students, because she says that they excel in school, and do very well with the high leveled curriculum. Another myth about the Indian slums, is that parents do not like their children going to school. Wrong!! Bose said that the parents are very supportive and want to give their kids something that they don’t have and what they didn’t get as a child. At teacher parent meetings, 80% of the parents are present. Although, on more occasions 100% of the parents are present. At first, when parents registered at conferences or school meetings, they would sign in using their fingerprints, but now, the parents sign in with their signature because the students helped the parents learn how to write and sign their name. Soon, parents wanted to start learning how to read and write. So Bose began an afternoon program for parents, mostly mothers. Unfortunately, 98% of the fathers are alcoholics, so the foundation sent the fathers to addiction labs, and when they were released, the foundation helped the fathers find jobs, and taught them how to cook so the children and their families would live healthier lifestyles and go to school energized. Another myth Bose discussed was that children that lived in the slums, did not integrate with “main street” (children that do not live in slums) children. Once again, the myth is incorrect. Bose presented a video of a girl that was given an opportunity to go to a camp with other students that didn’t live in slums. The girl was so excited to have been given the opportunity, and she couldn’t wait to go to the camp. She explained that she made new friends and the “main street” children treated her the same way they treated everyone else. They did not bully her or treat her with different attitudes. The “main street” students were her friends. At the end of the video, the little girl began to cry because she did not want to leave the camp and her new friends!! The little girl was a maid before she started school, but now she wants to be a neurologist. Sports is also a major deal at the schools. Every year, Bose’s first built school is invited to a “Best School Competition” where there are five thousand children, one-hundred and forty schools, and Bose’s school has won “Best School” three years in a row. Bose ended her presentation by saying, what is in the building is not important. The color of the walls, the toilets, and what the library looks like, is not important, all that matters is what the children are learning. I loved watching Bose speak at the TED conference. She kept the audience engaged by using humor, heart touching stories, and mind-blowing statistics. It was so heartwarming to hear about all that she has done to change the way children are being educated in the slums of India. One thing I learned from Bose, is NEVER, EVER, give up on children, no matter where they come from or what their background is. Everyone deserves a chance in this chaotic world, so we as teachers need to be patient, loving, and have a desire to change lives!!

Shane Koyczan: "To This Day" ... for the bullied and beautiful - Melissa Canterbury

"If you have time to watch only one video today, it should probably be this one. After being posted to YouTube, animated spoken-word poem 'To This Day,' by Canadian poet Shane Koyczan, has spread like wildfire online ... Slate called the video 'beautiful,' Yahoo! News dubbed it 'powerful' and Mashable promised that it will 'reshape your views on name calling, harassment and pain.'" The Huffington Post

Shane Koyczan is an author, poet and musician who has published three books and who also performed at the opening ceremonies of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. He turns spoken-words into music and poetry. Koyczan’s poem , “To This Day”, is a powerful story about bullying, survival and what it’s like to be young and...... different. This spoken-word poem captivated millions and is illustrated from animators all around the world.

Through humor Shane Koyczan gives a poem of what it’s like to be bullied. He begins by saying how at such young age, children are expected to find themselves and that if they didn’t others would do it for them. For example, calling other names like “geek”, “fatty”, “slut”, “fag” etc. At the same time that children are being told these names are what they are, they are asked what do they want to be. What do you want to be when you get older? Koyczan goes on to say that when he was a kid he wanted to be a marine biologist (until he saw the movie Jaws), that he wanted to be an adult, and he wanted to shave (now he has a full beard). He says that age 10 he was told his parents left because they didn’t want him, age 11 he wanted to be left alone, age 12 he wanted to die and at age 13 he wanted to kill a kid. Koyczan was then asked to choose a career path, and he said he wanted to be a writer. He was told he should choose something more “realistic”. So, he chose a professional wrestler! He was told not to be stupid. How can we ask children what they want to be or what their dreams are and then shoot them down? Not only was Koyczan called names, he dreams were called names as well.

Koyczan recalls when his dream came back to him after being criticized and ridiculed about it. He remembers his first line of poetry was in response to a world that demanded he hate himself. From a time in life, age 15-18, he hated himself and the world he lived in. He says that standing up for yourself doesn’t have to lead to violence, he would trade in homework assignments for friendship. It’s so sad but this is the world we live in. Now, with technology it is so easy to sit behind a computer and for children to cyber bully other children. I know I am not going to fix the bully situation, but I won’t allow for it to take place in my classroom.

Next, Koyczan describes how when he was a kid, he thought pork chops and karate chops were the same thing. His grandmother thought it was cute so she never corrected him. One day while playing where he shouldn’t have been, he fell from a tree. The gym teacher saw the bruises on his ride side and turned him into the principle. His response to the questions about his home life was “When I’m sad, my grandma gives me karate chops!” If only he knew this would lead into a full investigation and would be removed from his home for three days. News got around the school and he got deemed the nickname, “porkchop”.

The rest of the video is of a glorious poem with illustrations and a violin in the backdrop about bullying. Let me just say that Shane Koyczan is incredible! The emotion in his work is so inspiring and I plan to watch more of his work.

Bullying is a horrible thing. It happens in schools, there is no way to completely get rid of it, unfortunately. This video has opened my eyes to pay attention to students. Not only will I be an educator, it goes much further than teaching a lesson on multiplication. I need to be aware of the relationships in my classroom and show students that bullying is a real action and how to handle that situation.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Blog Post #12

Sir Ken Robinson quote If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original.

“What can we learn from Sir Ken Robinson?” -Dr. Strange

Sir Ken Robinson is an English author, speaker, and international advisor on education in the arts to government, education, and arts bodies. He was Director of The Arts in Schools Project, in 1985–1989, a Professor of Arts Education at the University of Warwick from 1989 to 2001, and was knighted in 2003 for his services to education. Robinson’s specializes in education, creativity, and innovation and frequently speaks at conferences about those topics.

Changing Education Paradigms- Lauren Macon
In the video, Changing Education Paradigms Ken Robinson says that, “Every country on earth, at the moment, is reforming public education.” The first reason is economic, people trying to work out the question, how do we educate our children to take their place in the economies of the 21st century, given that we can’t anticipate what the economy will look like at the end of next week. The second reason is cultural, trying to educate our children so they have a sense of cultural identity. He challenges the way we’re educating our children. He speaks about the way he would change education. I agree with him! The current system of education was designed for a different age. He then talks about ADHD, he says it is not an epidemic. They are being distracted from “boring stuff.” They are taking drugs to get them focused. We should be waking the students up to what the have inside of themselves. But, we are doing the exact opposite and medicating them. I could not agree more. Changing education means no more standardized test. This reminds me of the burp back education. We should do away with standardized test because that was designed for a different age. Children do not think the same way they did years ago. Everything else has changed, but not education. New school systems should cultivate creativity and acknowledge multiple intelligences.

The Importance of Creativity- Caitlin Lankford

In the video The Importance of Creativity, filmed in 2006, Sir Ken Robinson speaks at a conference about why creativity is important. Robinson made some strong and effective points about creativity. He started his speech by saying that children starting Kindergarten, would be retiring in 2065. Robinson then asks a stunning question: what will the world look like? He said we do not know what the world will look like in 2065. Better yet, we don’t know what five years from now looks like, yet we are supposed to be teaching and preparing students for the future. Robinson said, if you are not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original, and most kids loose that “creativity” when they grow up, because they are afraid of being wrong. We live in a world where our national education systems are saying that mistakes are the worst things we can make; as a result, teachers are educating people out of their creativity! Robinson goes on to say that every education system around the world has the same hierarchy of subjects: math and language arts, humanities, and then arts. Under the arts subject, there is another hierarchy where music and art come first, then drama and dance. There is NO grade school that teaches dance the way they teach math, because mathematics and language arts are used for workforce. There are so many things we can learn from Robinson, but three main things he covered in his speech were using creativity wisely, see the capacity of creativity for what it is, and seeing children for the hope that they are. We cannot take creativity out of the learning process, because we will lose our creativity and start being afraid of being wrong. “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” -Pablo Picasso

How to Escape Education’s Death Valley- Melissa Canterbury

Sir Ken Robinson begins his speech, How to Escape Educaion’s Death Valley, with an important statement about the drop out crisis and the studetns it includes. One major crisis in the education system is the dropout rate. In American society there is a 60% rate and in the Native American society, an 80% drop out rate. However, the dropout crisis does not include all the students who are in school but are disengaged in learning, don’t enjoy it and who are not getting any real benefit from it. The problem with this is not that Americans aren’t spending enough money or making initiatives to improve education. We spend more money on education than any other country. The problem is that education is going in the wrong direction. Sir Ken Robinson maps out the 3 principles that are crucial for the human mind to flourish but are contradicted by the current culture of education.
The first is that human beings are naturally diverse. “Education under No Child Left Behind, is not based on diversity but conformity.” -Sir Ken Robinson. Students are being evaluated on what they can do across a very narrow spectrum. One issue with No Child Left Behind, is that educators are forced to focus on the standards such as Science and Math. According to Sir Ken Robinson, these standards are necessary, but they are not sufficient. Education should be equally weighed throughout Arts, Physical Education, and Humanities as well. Robinson is quite humorous throughout his videos and especially when he mentions ADHD and that children are not suffering from a physiological condition, they are suffering from childhood. You can not assign a student worksheets and “busy work” and expect them not to get fidgety and bored. Students prosper by a broad curriculum that encourages their various talents and engages them in the learning process.
The second principle is curiosity. Students will learn better on their own if the teachers spark this principle. Children are natural learners. I LOVE what Sir Ken Robinson says about teachers and their role in the school. He says that teaching is not a “delivery system”. Teachers are not here to simply deliver information to students so as Dr. Strange would say, “burp it back”. “Teachers are the lifeblood of the success of schools” -Sir Ken Robinson. Yes, great teachers deliver received information. They also engage, mentor, stimulate and provoke students. He also makes a very good point about testing. Testing is important, standardized tests have a purpose. However, tests should not be the dominant culture of learning. Tests should be diagnostic and used to help evaluate students but not the only form of evaluation.
The third principle is creativity. “Human life is inherently creative.” -Sir Ken Robinson. One role in education is to awaken the imagination and creativity in students. Our culture in education is standardized however, but it doesn’t have to be. According to Sir Ken Robinson, Finland regularly comes out on top in subjects such as Math, Reading, and Science but they have a broader curriculum and focus on Humanities and Arts as well. Finland’s education system doesn’t focus on standardized test either. Robinson also mentions that Finland doesn’t have a drop rate. At a conference recently. a representative from Finland asked why drop out? They immediately help students with their issues and support them.
“What can we learn from Sir Ken Robinson?” -Dr. Strange. Education will be successful once the education system adopts individualized teaching and learning, recognizes that it is the student who is learning, and engages the students curiosity, individuality, and creativity. This is how we will get our students to learn.

Project #14

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Blog Post #11

First Grade Technology
Ms. Cassidy, a first grade teacher from Canada, uses technology in her classroom everyday with her students. In the video, Little Kids...Big Potential, Ms. Cassidy's first graders explain their use of technology in the classroom. I loved that these first graders were blogging! My first blog was this year in EDM310 and these first graders do it everyday in their classroom. I want to incorporate blogging in my future classroom. People from all over the world are reading these students blogs. Amazing! If they were writing on pencil and paper, that couldn't happen. The students said that writing on their blog makes them a better writer. They are able to see their mistakes and correct them. Another tool Ms. Cassidy's class uses is Skype. They use this to communicate with other educators and other students around the world. I will use Skype in my future classroom as well. Skype would be a great tool to use to let the children ask questions, interview, etc. to other people. It is amazing that a first grader can use technology so well.

In the interview, Ms. Cassidy, Dr. Strange and his class discuss questions about how she uses technology in her classroom. This interview was very helpful. I agree with her that every teacher needs to be technologically advanced. Without EDM310, I don't think I would be. Ms. Cassidy says, "technology is not going away." Technology is not going away because it is constantly changing and progressing. Ms. Cassidy says that she has great support from her school, technology coordinator, and district area. Having support to help you with technology in your classroom is important when blogging, making video productions, etc. A quote from Ms. Cassidy that stood out to me was, "we have to change because the world is changing."

C4T #3

Dean Shareski is a Digital Learning Consultant with in Canada. He specializes in the use of technology in the classroom. This blog, Ideas and Thoughts, was interesting and I learned so much just by reading two blog posts. Dean Shareski is the Community Manager for Discovery Education. He believes that teachers and students should use technology to connect ideas and learners. I can connect to this because this is what we are learning in EDM310. In 2010, he was awarded the ISTE Award for Outstanding Leadership in Technology and Education.

The first post I commented on was titled "Professional Development is Not That Complicated." It discussed that often teachers are treated like students and professional developers want to control what and how they learn. Professional Learning only requires two things: learning something and share something. Professional Learning is not having teachers filling out forms that fit into a spreadsheet. My comment I left, told Dean Shareski who I was and that as a future teacher, it was a great post to read. Teachers need to be trusted to do good work, learn and share.

The second post I commented on, "Whatever Happened to Joy?," was about his speech he gave at a TEDx event.

In my comment, I discussed the video on his lecture. I think everyone should watch! I really enjoyed reading this blog and listening to his speech.

Project #13

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Blog Post #10

Randy Pausch's Last Lecture

Randy Pausch's Last Lecturewas a professor, mentor, researcher and alumnus at Carnegie Mellon. He was involved in a number of university departments and initiatives. In 2007, Randy Pausch gave a one-of-a-kind, motivational, powerful lecture that became an international media story and a best-selling book. His lecture was about his childhood dreams, enabling the dreams of others, and lessons learned. In 2008, he died from cancer. He did not let his health stop him from being humorous, cheerful, energetic, and youthful.

After watching this inspiring lecture, I learned so many things about teaching and learning. I can't wait to read the book to learn more! Several things Randy Pausch said stood out to me:

"Brick walls are there for a reason, let us prove how badly we want things." There are many brick walls in life, even in the classroom. When a child hits a brick wall, we should not give up on them. Brick walls let us show our dedication.

"We learn from our students, not just the teacher." I absolutely agree with this. This is an inspiring quote for not only teachers, but for everyone.

"Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted." In life we don't always get what we want, but there are always lessons learned.

If someone gives up on you, they have stopped caring. Never give up on your students.

"When people give you feedback, cherish it and use it."

"It's not about how to achieve your dreams, it's about how to lead your life." The dreams will come to you. Karma will take care of itself.

This lecture was one to never forget. I will carry the inspiration from this lecture with me in my future classroom. It taught me to never give up on my students, encourage them to achieve their dreams and learn with them. "Find the best in everybody." This is something to remember every day.

"You cannot change the cards you were dealt, you can only change the way you play your hand." - Randy Pausch

Project #12: SMARTboard

Project #9: Podcast

Sunday, June 23, 2013

C4T #2

Technology in Education words in the shape of a car.

Dianne Krause is an Instructional Technology Specialist and Coach in the Wissahickon School District. Her blog has resources and ideas for the successful integration of technology in the classroom.

The first comment I left for Mrs. Krause was discussing eight technology books every leader should read. I found this post very interesting! I have never read any education technology books before. After reading this post, I was eager to read one of them. The book "A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change really interest me. It is important to keep up, stay enthused, and grow through change. I encourage everyone to read at least one of these books, especially if you are a future educator.

The second post I commented on discussed the twelve most perfect ways to ensure you're legally using online photos. This is very important whether you are an educator or not. Most people do not know the proper way of using online photos or images. These tips were very helpful.

I enjoyed reading Mrs. Krause's blog!

Blog Post #8

An apple with words describing teaching.

What can we learn about teaching and learning from these teachers? -Dr. Strange

Blended Learning Cycle: Lauren Macon

In the video, Blended Learning Cycle Mr. Paul Anderson, a high school AP Biology teacher in Bozeman, Montana explains how he is using the blending learning cycle in his classroom. Blending Learning is taking the parts of online, mobile, and classroom learning and blending them together in a classroom. The Learning Cycle is composed of engaging questions, exploring experiments, explaining the phenomenon, expanding on it, and then evaluating. This is what inspired the Blended Learning Cycle. Mr. Anderson begins his class with a good question about a phenomenon. I think this is a great way to start your class off! It gets the students attention and gets their interest. Asking questions is something I will use in my future classroom. After the question, he explains we should be prepared for investigation/inquiry, video, elaboration, review, and a summary quiz. He uses different types of technology during this process. I also explored his blog, Bozemanscience. His blog has hundreds of science videos that he created. He is always learning new things and sharing them. I learned that you should let your students be in control of their learning, questions are important, and that you can learn with your students too. Watching Mr. Anderson’s video was very beneficial. I will use these skills in my future classroom!

Back to the Future: Caitlin Lankford

In the video Back to the Future. Brian Crosby, a fourth, fifth, and sixth grade science and technology teacher, was describing how he “runs” things in his classroom. Crosby talked about how all of his students have a computer, access to a web camera, and their own blog. Basically what Crosby was focusing on in his presentation, was that he does a learning activity with his students, and then to assess them, he makes the students write about it in their blog! How neat? Crosby’s class is very focused on technology activities, yet very hands-on. For instance, Crosby and his class, made a hot air balloon go into high altitudes of the sky and attached a camera to the balloon so that they may be able to receive information from where the balloon is. The children discussed the learned information on their blog and wrote a book about their findings. The children received numerous amounts of positive comments on their research and findings! I love what Crosby did with his class; he made learning fun! I hope that one day, I will have the means to do something special with my class just as Crosby did with his.

Making Thinking Visible: Melissa Canterbury

In the video Making Thinking Visible. Mark Church, a sixth grade teacher at International School Amsterdam, asks his students to talk among their small groups about a video they watched in class the day before. He gives them time to discuss within their groups and asks them to come up with a headline to capture what the video was all about and what exactly did what they watch mean. Church gave his students a strip of paper to write their headline on after they decided on something as a group. I liked that he put the students into groups and asked them to work together to come up with a headline. By doing that, he is engaging the students and allowing them to learn from other students in their group. We can learn from Mark Church his way of engaging the students in the thinking process. Church gave the students an opportunity to share their own opinions and then showing them how to work in groups to come up with a final decision for the headline. I really like the idea of students working in small groups and I think that keeps them engaged in the lesson. From personal experience, I love working in groups and hearing what my classmates say because sometimes I can’t explain what I am thinking or put it in the right words and my group members help me get it out. I love learning from other educators and think it is only beneficial to us especially as young teachers with little or no experience in the classroom.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Project #9

To begin my personal learning network (PLN), I chose Symbaloo. As of now, it consists of my frequently used websites such as Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, Gmail, etc. I also added several education sites such as TeacherTube. I cannot wait to add more resources and organize it. I am looking forward to using this throughout the semester!

Blog Post #7

Apps for the iPad

For this week’s blog post assignment our group wanted to find assistive apps for iPads. Since iPads are becoming more common in the classroom, we decided this would be the most beneficial to us. Specialized apps for special needs children allow the students to still be connected with the other students using the iPads, however they have their personalized programs that help expand their own learning experience.

ArtikPix: Lauren Macon

ArtikPix is a FREE iPad app designed for children to receive speech practice and self-monitor their productions during flashcard and matching activities. More decks are available for purchase individually or in groups. When using this in the classroom, the teacher can create their own flashcards using illustrations or photos and share them. This is a great and fun way for students to practice his/her sounds in spelling words or individualized sentences. Then, share them with other ArtikPix users via an email attachment. This allows the teacher to customize the student learning experience when used in the flashcard and matching activities. If you have the full version of ArtikPIx, you can combine decks and configure sound groups. It also collects scores, which is great for the teacher to monitor the progress of the student. To facilitate speech practice, there are audio and visual options. There are also options to enable varying levels of students.

iWriteWords: Melissa Canterbury

iWriteWords is an app for the iPad that teaches students fine motor skills, handwriting and literacy through entertaining games. It is a perfect app for individual seat work for the special needs children who struggles with the traditional worksheet. After looking around on Pinterest and special education boards, iWriteWords caught my attention. The students help Mr. Crab collect numbers in sequence by dragging with their fingers and drawing the letter at the same time. After the student traces each letter, the program says the letter aloud and then says the word that the letters make. This app is designed for younger elementary students as they learn their sight words and handwriting. iWriteWords can be purchased in the app store on iTunes for only $2.99, which I think is great! The cheaper the better, although it isn’t the price I prefer, which is FREE, it is still very affordable.

Dragon Dictation: Caitlin Lankford

Dragon Dictation is an iPad app not only designed for children, but is for adults too. This app is similar to Siri on the iPhone, and just like Siri, Dragon Dictation records what you say and not only gives you the option of sending your words through text messaging, but also via email, Twitter, and/or Facebook. Therefore, when used in the classroom, the teacher can email, or text the child’s progress to himself, the parent, speech pathologist, and/or principal. Also, when used in the classroom, struggling speakers can record what they say, hear it read back to them, and see their words on the screen. For those who have a difficult time speaking certain letters in words, such as saying “w” instead of “l,” this app is an easy and effective way of correcting the speech. To make this app even better, it is FREE!!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Blog Post #6

Questions Drive Thinking

"What do we need to know about asking questions to be an effective teacher?" -Dr. Strange

EDM310 has taught me that "questions are more important than 'answers'." Asking questions gives feedback to the teacher and gets the students involved and engaged.

Have you ever thought of a question to ask, but didn't know how to ask it? Have you ever had a teacher ask you a question and you didn't know what she was asking? I have! The teacher would ask a question and no one in the room would raise their hand or respond. Was it because they didn't know what the teacher was asking or was it because they didn't know the answer? In Joanne Chesley's video, Asking better questions in the classroom Pt. 1, she discusses the difference between an open-ended question and a closed-ended question. A closed-ended question is asked for the student and can be answered in one word such as "yes" or "no." It can also be answered in a short phrase. An open-ended question leaves the form of the answer up to the person who is responding which requires more thinking. Often times teachers get what they ask for, literally. They will ask a closed-ended question, but are looking for an open-ended response.

In the article, Asking Questions to Improve Learning, strategies for improving questions and responding effectively are presented. One important thing to remember, you are modeling a process that students can use themselves. When asking a "yes-or-no" question, make sure to follow with an additional question asking students to explain why they answered the way they did. Make sure the questions are direct, clear, and specific. For each class session, include notes of when to stop and ask questions. This will make the class more interactive and help you measure and improve student learning. No one wants to sit in a class where the teacher never gets the students involved and interactive by not asking questions. When responding to students, always show interest in students' answers, right or wrong. Let them finish their answer before responding.

All of these strategies will help me make improvements when asking questions as a teacher. As teachers, we need to ask questions that involve the students getting involved and thinking. I cannot wait to use all of these strategies in my classroom! They were all very helpful and useful.

Project #8

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

My Passion Is

My Sentence Is

Blog Post #5

Children Holding Hands

Judy Scharf Podcast Collection

Judy Scharf describes the word podcast as a cross between "broadcast" and "iPod." Scharf describes it as a "radio-style" talk show and it may include music. Podcasts may be listened to on any computer or MP3 player and can be shared all over the world via internet. Scharf also lists two videos for a better understanding. One is a video on how to create a podcast. The other is an instructional video from TeacherTube. This video gives step by step instructions on how to create a podcast. Scharf also gives her own tips to creating a successful podcast.

Lanwitches- Podcasting with First Grade

In this blog, a first grade class was excited about being introduced to podcasting. The teacher read a book to the class, one chapter at a time. As a class, they came up with questions and answers as if they were interviewing the two main characters in the book. Each student had the opportunity to ask the questions and answer them. The students were eager to hear themselves on audio after recording and editing the podcast.

Langwitches- Flat Stanley Podcast

A first grade class read the book "Flat Stanley" by Jim Brown. After reading "Flat Stanley", the students wanted to be flattened and mailed around the world. Each student picked a location around the world they wanted to visit. They borrowed a library book about the location and used the internet to research their destination. With their parents, they read the book and wrote a short script that included the location (city, state, country, continent), how they got there (transportation), what they did, and how they got back home. The class brainstormed with their teacher a storyline so that each student had a part in the podcast. With enthusiasm and excitement, the class recorded their podcast.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Project #3 Presentation

C4T #1

Comments for Teacher

For my first C4T assignment, I was assigned to comment on a blog created by Mrs. Denise Krebs. Denise Krebs is a certified K-8 teacher who reflects on 21st century education in her blog. She has taught for seventeen years in Arizona, California, and Iowa. She is currently a junior high teacher for 7th and 8th graders.

The first post I commented on, Mrs. Denise Krebs wrote about what it meant for students to learn, create, or master a skill during genius hour. Instead of the students producing what she wants them to, she is learning to let them take action. I commented that "It’s hard for us as teachers to let go and let students learn" as she said in her post. But, it is a way of letting the students think for themselves and create new ideas. Genius hour seems to really get their minds to create, imagine, and inspire.

For the second post, Mrs. Denise Krebs explained that just because you fail at something does not mean you are a failure. She then explained that failure was just a first attempt at learning. I commented that it is important for students to realize that just because they fail at something, does not mean they are a failure. We learn from our mistakes and our fails. She does not use the words fail or failure in an educational context. Instead, she uses words such as resiliency, persistence, perseverance, and grit.

I enjoyed reading these posts from Mrs. Denise Krebs. She is passionate about what she writes in her blog.

Blog Post #4


PhotoPeach- Lauren Macon

PhotoPeach is a video tool where you can create a slideshow in three easy steps. It is used in hundreds of schools worldwide, but you do not have to be an educator to use it. Your slideshow can be shared on websites and via email. PhotoPeach is free, but you can upgrade to become a premium user for only three dollars a month, which allows you to download unlimited shows in burnable CD format, upload your own music, create unlimited photo albums, and customize the transition effects. The website states that “the combination of images, music, and text helps students learn about presentation, expression, writing, communication skills, art appreciation, and media literacy.” There are three advantages for PhotoPeach for educators. One, it is easy to create and can be easily started and stopped within class time. Second, teachers can control and manage student privacy. The slideshows can be kept private or can be shared with the parents and others in the community.Third, it is a great tool for collaborative group work. The students can answer quizzes and polls that the teacher created or the students can create their own. This is an easy tool for teachers and students to give a presentation to the class. PhotoPeach can also be used in the library, technology class, as an assessment tool, as a slideshow, international exchange between schools and much more. You can also follow other people’s accounts or view different slideshows in various categories. On WolframAplpha, Animoto, another video tool, receives 1.2 million daily views, whereas PhotoPeach receives only 92,000. PhotoPeach is a great tool to use in the classroom, or for anyone creating a slideshow. After creating my own account to experience PhotoPeach, I am looking forward to using this tool more and using it in my future classroom.

Edmodo- Melissa Canterbury

Edmodo is a social media tool similar to Facebook and Twitter for educators, students and parents to communicate with each other. After creating an account and exploring the website more, I quickly became really interested in it. At first when creating your profile, it prompts you to select "communities" or categories you are interested in. For example, Mathematics, Computer Technology, Creative Arts, Science, Social Studies, etc. Other teachers who have selected these categories as their "communities" can then post lessons or resources for other teachers to access. Edmodo is also very organized. There is a library tab where the teacher can add links and files so that students or parents can locate them anywhere. When posting, the teacher has the object to title the post, whether it be "assignment", "poll", "quiz", or an "alert". I know from using Facebook and Twitter myself that the amount of users on those two social media is rapidly increasing. After researching on WolframAplpha the "daily visitors of Twitter and Facebook", WolframAlpha reported:

Daily visitors on 640 million visit/day

Daily visitors on 84 million visit/day.

These numbers show just how many people use social media today. I can only predict those numbers increasing in the next couple of years. In my classroom I wish to be as connected as my students and parents as possible. With Edmodo, it allows me to be connected with my students and parents through a social media, which they are used to using in their personal lives. However, Edmodo lets me keep the personal lives separate since it is strictly for educators and their students and parents. When using this tool in my elementary classroom, I can use Edmodo to keep in touch with my students as a whole when they are outside of my classroom. I will make sure to teach the importance of social media safety. This page will also allow students to communicate with each other. The teacher can also put her friends into groups, so with parents, I will put them in their own group. This way teachers can communicate with each other about what is going on in the classroom and keep it separate from the students. Edmodo was a very interesting site and I already have teachers sharing links and lessons with me. I am looking forward to exploring this site more throughout the semester and sharing with EDM how it works and how effective I think it will be in the classroom.

Prezi- Caitlin Lankford

Prezi is an online whiteboard that converts presentations from lectures into conversations: allowing people to see, distinguish, and remember thoughts. Randy Howder, the design strategist for Prezi said on the website that, “Prezi allows us to communicate design ideas with our clients in a highly engaging and dynamic way, liberating interesting conversations from the boredom of one-way presentations.” Prezi is designed to improve organization skills and make learning more engaging! This network system, is also available for easy access to share occurring and abundant ideas! Prezi is not just used for educators, but also used by businesses, conferences, and non-profit organizations. Prices for Prezi are also a steal! For public use, Prezi is free. However, if one would like to upgrade Prezi to the “Enjoy,” the price rises to $4.92 monthly, adding up to be $59.00 annually. There is one more upgrade, called “Pro” pricing at $13.25 a month, and $159.00 annually! Although, teachers and students do receive a discount with “Enjoy” being free and “Pro” pricing at $4.92 monthly and annually, $59.00. For a comparisons found on Wolframalpha about presentation website idea prices, SlideShare starts out free, then proceeds to Silver ($19.00 a month), Gold ($49.00 a month), and Platinum (call for details). Unfortunately, Picsviewr did not have a specific amount for using the presentation tool. Prezi is such an interesting tool for not only teachers, but for anyone who is required to deliver a presentation. This tool is quite easy to use and extremely beneficial! I am excited to become familiar with Prezi and use it in EDM310, and as well as in my future classroom!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Blog Post #3

Peer Editing

Peer Editing

Peer Editing is working with someone your own age by improving, revising, and editing his or her writing according to "What is Peer Editing?" and "Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial." These are great sources for students to know how they are supposed to peer edit without being a "Picky Patty" or a "Mean Margaret." I would always get nervous when the teacher said to pass your paper to another student for peer editing. I never knew if I would get a "Speedy Sandy" who didn't really read the paper or a "Jean the Generalizer." As I got older, I liked peer editing and wanted classmates to read my writing before I turned it into the teacher.

There are three steps in completing peer editing. The first one is to give compliments. When revising, be sure to say what the writer did really well. Most importantly, STAY POSITIVE! The second step is suggestions. Make suggestions such as how your classmate can improve their writing, word choice, enough details, organization, sentence structure, etc. When making suggestions, be specific. The third step is making corrections such as punctuation, grammar, and spelling. Remember to stay positive during these three steps. When editing, we should approach the classmate as we would a student. This assignment has given me suggestions and ideas of critiquing my peers and when I become a teacher.

When I critique my group members, I will do so honestly. So far, my group members have typed well written posts with minor revisions needed. If I do find an error in my group members posts, I will email them the revisions they need to correct. I would hope they would do the same for me. I choose this way of commenting because I would not want to humiliate my group members on their blog publicly. My group members have very good organizational skills when writing their blogs. I will use these three steps when critiquing my group members and I will remember the first rule, stay positive.

Blog Post #2 Revised

words describing 21st century education

Mr. Dancealot

In the video,Mr. Dancealot teaches his class with a powerpoint. He demonstrates the dances behind a large desk so that the students cannot see the movements of his feet. Also, he did not let the students participate. This style of teaching was nearly impossible for the students to learn anything. This is what Burp-Back Education looks like in the classroom. The students did not learn anything. When teaching a dance class, the students must be in a ballroom learning and practicing the dance. Mr. Dancealot expected the students to know the dance without practicing. This goes for other subjects in the classroom as well. How is one supposed to learn anything if they are not involved? Many teachers have taught and are teaching this way, giving a disadvantage to students.

Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts: Lauren Macon

In the video, "Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts," Vicki Davis teaches in a classroom full of technology. She not only teaches, but her students teach too. She states that an educator does not need to know everything about a subject to teach it. They are learning together as a team and the students are teaching as well. Davis’ students collaboratively write and create videos with other students. The students are becoming more comfortable with technology, as well as becoming connected with students all over the world.

Teaching in the 21st Century: Melissa Canterbury

What Kevin Roberts is asking in "Teaching in the 21st Century" is what is the role of the educator? As educators are we here to simply give students information? No, they clearly have search engines like Google and Bing for that. We as educators are here to provide resources and the tools needed for students to succeed. Technology is taking control of classrooms whether teachers are ready for it or not. Educators need to be able to teach students how to use iPads and computers, and not only tell them Google can answer their questions; but teach them how to interpret the information they find on search engines such as Google. Teaching in the 21st century means teaching in classrooms where textbooks don't exist anymore. (Try telling that to teachers 20 years ago.)It means saving those trees and typing on laptops instead. The fast paced, technological world that we live in is taking over our classrooms and educators will need to be prepared.

The Networked Student: Caitlin Lankford

"The Networked Student" by Wendy Drexler made me realize many things. As said before, in the technology world we are living in, things are changing drastically. We always rely on our technology devices to get us out of situations or take us away from being bored. Being a teacher of a networked student would have many pros and cons. For a pro example, classrooms would Go Green. Assessments would be online, as well as assignments. There is such a thing as too much technology, though. Some students learn in different ways. For me, I am a hands on kind of learner. If studies go strictly to technology, things will get difficult for some students. Students will always need teachers. Teachers will never go away, because who is going to teach the students how to do something online or on the computer. For instance, Baldwin County High School was the first school to give all of the students a computer. Beforehand, the passing rate was extremely low. Now, two years later, more and more students are graduating because there is a different way of learning. Technology can tend to be a good resource, whether the teacher will be strictly in front of you, or by a communicating software (i.e. Skype).

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Blog Post #2

Mr. Dancealot

In the video, Mr. Dancealot teaches his class with a powerpoint. He demonstrates the dances behind a large desk so that the students cannot see the movements of his feet. Also, he did not let the students participate. This style of teaching was nearly impossible for the students to learn anything. This is what Burp-Back Education looks like in the classroom. The students did not learn anything. When teaching a dance class, the students must be in a ballroom learning and practicing the dance. Mr. Dancealot expected the students to know the dance without practicing. This goes for other subjects in the classroom as well. How is one supposed to learn anything if they are not involved? Many teachers have taught and are teaching this way, giving a disadvantage to students.

Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts

In the video, "Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts," Vicki Davis teaches in a classroom full of technology. She not only teaches, but her students teach too. She states that a teacher does not need to know everything about a subject to teach it. They are learning together, and the students are teaching her new things as well. Her students collaboratively write and create videos with other students. The students are becoming comfortable with technology and are becoming connected with students all over the world.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Blog Post #1

I often think about what I want my dream classroom or school to look like. It is very similar to Krissy Venosdale's dream school. I picture it to be colorful, with the walls filled with artwork. Technology to be incorporated in all classrooms. I picture it to be welcoming to parents and students. I picture smiling faces on children and staff. Sugata Mitra also had a viewpoint for school. His viewpoint is to change the education system into something better. He has taught many children and shared his ideas with the world to better education.

What I Want My Students To Know

I want my students to know that they are learning and that it is okay to make mistakes. I want them to be themselves. I want my students to know that I care about their education and their future.

What I Want My Students To Be Able To Do

I want my students to be able to learn, read fluently, write creatively, use their imagination and ask questions. I want them to love, laugh, and forgive.

My Primary Way Of Teaching

My primary way of teaching will be to model what I want them to learn. I will incorporate technology, hands on participation, groups, and lecture.

What Tools Will I Use

I will use many tools such as smart boards, iPads, computers, books, paper, paint, markers, pencils, and educational games just to name a few.

What Role Will My Students Play

My students will play the main role in the classroom. They will be the learners and the teachers. They will teach me and the other students without their knowledge. They will participate and interact in whole group, small group, and one on one. The students role will make learning fun and exciting.

Practice Blog Post

My name is Lauren Macon. I have lived in Mobile, Alabama my whole life. I love art and think it plays an important role in education. I knew I wanted to be an elementary teacher ever since I was little. My mom is a retired elementary teacher and I also have many educators in my family. I am the only child, but I have been blessed with a huge family and lots of cousins. I have been a PreK 3 teacher for three years and I love it. Children are my passion. I am excited to be on this journey as a future educator.