Friday, April 30, 2010

Farewell EDM310

EDM was a course that was both challenging and beneficial. Between blogs, projects, podcasts, and a list of other assignments I am walking away from this course with a great deal of knowledge, and for that I am very grateful. It was a great opportunity getting to have you as a professor Dr. Strange. Thank you for introducing me to some wonderful tools that I can integrate into my teaching one day; and I wish my fellow classmates the best of luck in their futures and reaching the goals they have set for themselves.

Final Blog Post

1. I learned so much in this class! I think the amount I learned about technology in just one semester amazes me. What amazes me ever more, is the fact that there is so much more out there still to learn.
-Blogging: I benefited a great deal from this. It was also need to be able to connect to people from all around the world. I would love to implement class blogs into my classroom once I become a teacher.
-Skype: I think cool is the best word to describe this. I’d heard of it before, but this semester is the first time I actually ‘skyped’ with somebody.
-Google Presentations: free, easy, convenient. Needless to say, I loved this tool!!
Picasa: I have had the most fun with this tool. I love taking pictures, and the editing tools on this are amazing! I now use Picasa all the time.

2. I firmly believed this covered everything possible, and then some. I was overwhelmed with the amount of information that was thrown at us, but looking back, I now appreciate the fact that I was introduced and now know how to use so much different technology.

3. I don’t want to forget anything, regardless of it I enjoyed doing it or not, EVERYTHING is a learning experience and is valuable in some way or another. You can never know too much, and there is always something to learn and build on. This class was the perfect example of that.

4. Keeping up, and building onto my personal blog excites me. It is going to be a great resource in the future, especially after I graduate and begin looking for a job. I would love to have the opportunity to look back, and share with others what I have learned/put into my blog.

5. This class has challenged me from day one, without a doubt. I think time consuming is a more appropriate word, there was ALWAYS a blog to post, or a project to work on. I was challenged to keep up with deadlines, and figuring out how to properly use the tools we were instructed to learn about and use.

6. Boring and this class do not go together. This class was never once boring. Stressful yes, but not boring.

7. If anything was to be changed about this class I think it should be having clear expectations from day one and explaining in greater detail about each tool, program we will use and how to properly put it to use. Also, maybe having the projects spaced out throughout the semester so the end isn’t quite so overwhelming.

8. I still have a lot to learn, but I have come a long ways since January. I hope I can continue to learn and grow on what I know already. I think that is what this class is all about!

9. I would love to keep up with my classroom and professional blogs. I would love to find every way possible to integrate technology into my classes here at South and continuing on into my own classroom one day!

Thursday, April 29, 2010


I interviewed a Special Education teacher that works in the Baldwin County School System.

1)When did you decide to become a teacher? I always wanted to be a teacher, ever since I can remember. However, I waited almost ten years after high school to go back to school to pursue this dream. I can honestly say that it was the best decision that I have ever made. I love my job and I look forward to going to school every day to teach my students.

2)Why Special Education? During my first year as a teacher I had a student with severe autism and learning disabilities; this is when I knew. I have taught both regular and special education and both are wonderful. I believe that working in this field takes passion, it’s harder work and more challenging than you would imagine, but worth every single second of it.

3)Is there any aspect about working in Special Education that you do not like? That’s an easy one. The paperwork. It is unreal; granted, after a while, you do become accustomed to it, but it seems like it is never-ending. Because in reality, it is!

4)What about technology? Have you been able to incorporate it into your classroom? Yes, through Smartboard. We all LOVE this thing. It is wonderful, and opens so many doors to education and ways to incorporate it into the lessons, especially in this setting.

5)Any advice, or words of wisdom? Of course. Teaching is such as joy; just remember you are in charge of educating little minds. Make sure you love it, give it 200%. It’s not a career you choose because of the paycheck, you choose it because you love it. If you can find that passion, you are heading in the direction of a challenging, yet wonderful, fulfilling future!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Google Earth Project

Sunday, April 25, 2010

A 7th Grader's Personal Learning Environment (or PLN)
This video got me excited to get into the classroom as a teacher. I love how excited the student is and she is ready to try new things and learn using technology. What amazed me the most was the fact that she is only in the seventh grade. There are a lot of programs mentioned in the video that could potentially be good references for teaching technology in the classroom like this.

Two Questions That Can Change Your Life
“What’s my sentence?” and “Was I better today than yesterday?” are two questions that make you really think. And when you think about it, both have the potential to change your life. These questions are ones that day by day can be answered. Motivation is key.

“What’s my sentence?” As a future teacher, I want to motivate and encourage my students to be the best versions themselves and fill them with as much knowledge as I am capable of, always wanting and striving to grow and learn new things, and reminding myself and my students that there is no age limit on learning.

I want to be better than the day before. The question, “Was I better than the day before?” is a reminder that each day is a new day and anything can be accomplished if we set our minds to it. Setting out to achieve what makes you happy and feel successful are the stepping stones to this and a reminder than each day is one step closer to achieving this.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Who Knew?!

I had no idea Google has so much to offer. Before this class, I thought Google was nothing more than a search engine that led me to where I wanted to go on the web. I was (and am still) amazed at all the things that I have learned to utilize with Google so far in this glass. My blog, g-mail account, google doc’s, igoogle, and learning how to use Google Earth are just a few. I’m sure I’m sure there are so many that I have even yet to have the opportunity to utilize.

I have enhanced my use of technology tremendously this semester and I can now say, with pride, that I know how to do other things on the computer rather than jut sign on Facebook and check my e-mail. I hope that I can embrace what I have learned so far and my knowledge keeps continuing to grow!


How Full is Your Bucket?

Kelly Hines blogged about “Positive Strategies for Work and Life”
She included five tips for increasing positive interactions. This was a great blog, and I really enjoyed reading it! It stresses to focus on what kids are doing right, instead of what kids are doing wrong. The five tips are:

1.Prevent Bucket Dipping-it reminds us that it is important that we stop taking from those same buckets before we can work on filling the emotional buckets of people we meet.

2.Shine a light on what is right- this is focusing on the positive, and highlighting what has been done well.

3.Make best-friends

4.Give un-expectantly-(Kelly Hines had the idea of leaving sticky notes in her students cubbies, I think this is such a great idea of giving warm fuzzies)

5.Reverse the golden rule-The authors suggest changing the Golden Rule from “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” to “do unto others as they would have you do unto them.”

HP v. iPad

Comments4Kids Week 14

Room 16's Got Talent
Why do we have a treaty in Aotearoa

"In the beginning the Maori people lived here first. The Europeans arrived later. They had some disagreements when having to live together. The treaty helped them to share and live happily."
This is the blog post, and they also included a cute animation that showed the story! It was really interesting to see them embrace and incorporate technology in that way!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Comments4Kids Week 13

We've Got The Write Stuff

This is Levi and Jorja

On this blog post they shared their reflections on this term. Their highlights were reading a swimming. They also said that their goal for next term was to get better at drawing and listening to the teacher.

Comments4Kids Week 12

Afio Mai and Welcome to Room 9

Leslie's Mihi in Maori
This video was so sweet! It was Leslie's first post for the year!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Dr. Seuss-The Zax
What a cute video! (Click this link to view for yourself.) These two Zax are definitely stubborn, is what I was thinking the whole time I watched this video! This video is a good depiction that being stubborn gets you absolutely nowhere. Knowing how to accept change and work with others, and modify what you think is ‘right’ and be able to see other sides other your own is the only way you’re going to (travel) get anywhere.

It’s important to remember these things as teachers as well. We are going to be working with students, other teachers, parents, principles and several other people. There are going to be many ideas about how, when and why things are done. This is no place or career for being stubborn, like the Zax.

PS 22
This video was incredible! I really enjoyed listening to these children sing; it’s such a wonderful song. Without technology others would not have the opportunity to see this precious video. This goes for any blog, podcast, post as well. It’s a open door to stay connected, learn more, and experience things that we otherwise would not.

With posting, like with Comments4Students, it gives the students to receive positive and negative comments from someone other than their teacher. I have really enjoyed getting to read the blogs of these students throughout this semester; many of which have put a smile on my face!

Timetoast Timeline

all things yoga & the yoga in all things

Yoga entered the new millennium on a wave of unprecedented popularity. During this decade: acceptance, commercialization, higher profits and an increase in diversity and its use for healing and therapeutic uses were found in yoga!

(Click this Link) to view the "It's all Yoga" time-line I created.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


"The Follis Files"

Candace Follis posted on the 5th of February:
Collaboration and Cooperative Learning
The blog was about group work and the negatives of assigning students to specific groups. I responded:
I agree with your beliefs on letting students group themselves. You trying this is proof that it works and the outcomes they can produce as a group can be amazing! Results like these will outweigh the "lackluster" groups as you put it. There will always be students in your class like that, no matter how you decide to assign groups.

From my experience as a student I ALWAYS dreaded group work. Because my memory take me back to being in groups with students who could care less about their grade and if their work was A worthy. It was always a hassle, and from someone who has been there, I commend her decision completely!

Candace Follis posted on the 13th of March:
New Favorite Reading Handout
This blog was about BDA (Before, During, After) reading handout, called "Reciprocal Teaching". Her approach of encouraging her students to engage in conversation and not just copy down is great and seems like it would help in their understanding as well. She received positive feedback from her students, after they had a chance to experience this technique, which is exciting!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Kaia’s Photo Essay

This video was wonderful; I really enjoyed watching Kaia’s photo essay. I think it’s great that her father is introducing her to and teaching her how to use technology beginning at such a young age. If she does learn all she can about technology it has potential to offer endless possibilities to Kaia. I had to admit that I am guilty of not always utilizing the technology that is available to me. There is so much that I can learn, and have left to learn. This video encouraged me to take better of the resources that I have, that way I can be like Kaia’s father in the sense of introducing technology to my students and offering open doors to technology for them as well.


What a neat way to keep in communicate! Before this class I had heard about Skype and people talking about how fun and personal way to keep in touch with people, but I hadn’t experienced this form of technology for myself. I must say, I really enjoy it! I think it is more personable than talking over the phone, or sending a text message, you can actually see the person you are talking to. My skype name is: tracyalms.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Morgan Bayda

Here is a link to view Morgan Baydas Blog!

I really enjoyed reading Morgan Baydas Blog and watching Dan Brown’s video. I think this was great example of how many college students may feel. It’s important that a student build a relationship with their professor, even if it’s something as small as the teacher knowing the students name and who they are. I have been fortunate to have many professors that do make an effort to form some type of connection with his/her students. I also feel that a person’s economic status should not play a role in the type of education a person has the ability to receive. There are so many opportunities or goals a person could miss out on if the ability to receive an education is based on whether or not you can afford it.

I think technology is great and there is so much that it can add to a lesson or lecture. I would definitely like, and plan to incorporate technology into my classroom once I am a teacher. I want to provide my students with resources and show them what is available to them. One of the main benefits of this is having the ability to broaden my students’ horizons, and technology can play a large role in this.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Week 10"The Slimey Slippery Snake"
This was the post Aaron from Ms. Goerend's class wrote. He was very descriptive in describing the snake and the way it looked and moved.
He wrote:
The slithering slimy snake skates his way out of the wet jungle and into the slime colored sky
singing his sweetly silly song all the way to the boiling sun. All while sweating and smiling with his sloppy teeth and slippery slobber filled tong slipping through his mouth.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Friday, March 12, 2010

Alabama Learning Exchange (ALEX)
Once I become a teacher, I can definitely see myself using ALEX as a reference and resource when planning my lessons. Teachers can share information or material that they have found helper so other teachers can benefit from it as well as them. This website provides podcasts, sample lesson plans, as well as many links to other websites that I can use as resources as well. Having the course of study standards available in one location makes it easy to access while planning lessons.

Before completing this assignment, I was already relatively familiar with ALEX, however after this I learned so much more as far as the resources and what was all involved with ALEX. There is so much combined into one site that everything you need is in one location. It really is great, and I’m looking forward to having access to this once I am a teacher and begin planning lessons of my own. It is very user friendly and easy to access.

Alabama Connecting Classrooms, Educators, & Students Statewide (ACCESS)
The entire ACCESS website has to do with distance learning. You can access this site by going to The purpose of this site is seeking to make opportunities for students who attend public school available equally to all students. This program is quite interesting. Some of the things offered are: sections for both students and teachers, additional resources and courses offered. Basically a student signs up for the class and they will go to a classroom in their school but instead of having a regular teacher they will be provided with an e Teacher. This is a teacher who will for example, skype in to teach the class.

There are arguments for both sides to this. Yes, it definitely has perks and potential however there are some negative aspects as well. Some of the concerns that are argued have to do with technology that is associated with the distance learning or not getting as much out of it. I believe it is a great way to give everyone a better chance at achieving their goals becoming who they would like to become. This program can be that opportunity to give those kids and chance!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


This week I was assigned to comment on Sustainably Digital: Thoughts on Teaching and Maintaining Sanity.
The video I watched was called: Metalloids & Semi-Conductors in Plain English
This video was very informative. To view this video, click

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Friendship (Haiku)
This week I was assigned to comment on Melissa's blog
She wrote the following Haiku:
Best Friends never fight
They always stay together
That's what friendship means

I told Melissa I thought she did a wonderful job and that I didn't think she could have said it any better.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Achieving Your Childhood Dreams
Amazing! I thoroughly enjoyed this lecture. My goal is to evolve into the kind of teacher he is. Caring and compassion are so important when you are touching the lives of your students and Randy Pausch possessed both of these, just like I hope and plan to.

“Anything is possible.” This stuck out to me probably more than anything else. Having faith and BELIEVING that we are capable to do anything we set out minds and reach the goals we set for ourselves is essential. “Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted.” This is so important to remember. Not everything is always going to work out, nor go the way we planned. That’s ok though. Everything we do, any choice or decision we make has the potential to be a learning experience. The more learning experiences we have, the better teachers we can become!

He is full of great motivational advice. The way he ended his lecture, with the advice,” It is not about how you achieve your dreams, but it is about how you lead your life.” It is a reminder to follow the right paths, become a person you are proud of, and always strive to be a better version of yourself. If you do these things, you are creating stepping stones to making these dreams come true. And dream, until they do.

This video really was exceptional! It was definitely worth watching, and I am so glad I had the opportunity to. He made some key points that I definitely took to heart. Some of his points I hope to follow are: helping others because it makes us better people in return, never lose childhood wonderment and having fun as a teacher in your classroom. These are three things that I want to implement into my career as a teacher and hopefully follow in his footsteps in this aspect.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Personal Learning Network

(PLN) Personal Learning Network

For my personal learning network, I have obtained a twitter account. I am currently working on becoming familiar with and learning how to be a successful ‘twitter-er.’ My classmates play a huge role in forming my Personal Learning Network as well. I rely on things they know and realize just how beneficial and what a large role they play in this. E-mail and our class blogs are two of the ways I have incorporated them into my PLN. Other teachers that I have come across as a result of this class, ones I have a teachers in my past, and even my mom who is a fourth grade teacher at Elberta Middle School. I am learning things that I wouldn’t have the opportunity to learn just by sitting in a classroom. I am still working on expanding my PLN, however, it is expanding more as my knowledge does.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Richard Miller: This is how we Dream
The more time that passes in this class and the more opportunity I am given to learn; the more I appreciate technology and all the possibilities that it has given us. For us to become better teachers, better students, or even better learners being equipped with this knowledge.

The library portion of this sticks out in my mind. When I was in elementary school I remember how important it was to know how to search through the sea of books to locate the one with the information we needed. It amazes me how much this has changed even since I was in elementary school. I have been in college for three years now, and come to think of it, every project I have done, ever y paper I have written could have been, if not was done without the need of a library. I had everything I could have possibly needed only a click of a button away. This goes to show how much we rely on technology and the new approaches that it is continuously giving us.

Both of these videos by Richard Miller provide us with essential resources and provide us with many good aspects. Both these videos were very informative and remind us that the internet has no limits or restrictions to what we can look up or research. We are able to access things or people from all over the world. It’s amazing how connected we can be to those thousands and thousands of miles away from us.

Wendy Drexler: The Networked Student
This video definitely was beneficial with my understanding about PLN’s and how to successfully use them. After completing this class, I feel like I will be much more prepared for the world of technology and the networking student. Connectivism (where students connect and learn from people all over the world) was addressed. I didn’t realize this, but it’s EVERYWHERE!

Students can benefit quite a bit from this, and the convenience factor weighs a lot in this. The ability to access anything from lessons and podcasts to iTunes U is there. It’s amazing! I wonder just how technology literate the students of next generation are going to be.

Michael Wesch: Toward a New Future or Whatever
“We shape our tools, and therefore our tools shape us” was a quote from Marshall McLuhan. This made me stop and think about what he meant by this. It makes perfect sense and I don’t think he could have said it better. We prove this true on a daily basic just by living and using the tools/technology we have become accustomed to.

This video was so modern and funny. The history of whatever was cute, and I found it humorous because I was able to relate to the shows and quotes he mentioned. He referred to this generation as the “Me” generation. He couldn’t have said it better. This statement holds true in the world we are living in today. He even went as far as to call this generation narcissistic. I don’t think this is true for EVERY single person, however, I can see his point. In this day and time there are many people who fit the title ‘narcissistic.’ We just have to work past this stereotype and learn about and accept technology/advancements and the ‘ME generation’ we are in, without letting it negatively affect the people we are.

Comments 4 Kids

Elliot's Imaginative Story
I am still amazed at what the students of today are learning to do at such young ages. Elliot composed an "Imaginative Story" then added his voice reading the story to his blog. Impressive!

The Bowl-A-Thon
On Leo's blog he tells about a fundraiser at 'Strikes' for the West Boca Marching Band. I told him how exciting it sounded, and wished them for a good turnout in the comment.

Comments 4 Kids allows us to be informed on things/events going on all around the world! As well as giving us ideas for when we have classrooms of our own. This is all so exciting to explore and learn!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Dr. Alice Christie's Website

Dr. Alice Christie talks about how technology can enhance learning as well as teaching. This was the portion of the website that I found to be most beneficial to teachers. There are several links and this website reassures us that this change and the incorporation of technology into our teaching/learning isn’t just beneficial, it can be fun as well.

There were several other links like podcasting, and internet resources that I found might be beneficial for teachers as well. Dr. Alice Christie appears to be a very successful by the looks of her website. There are so many tools and ideas that would be absolutely wonderful for students, teachers, and parents alike.

iTunes University

For someone who enjoys having technology, this version of iTunes could be really helpful. I think everyone could be able to benefit from this. Teachers can post lectures, which would benefit the student and the teachers can find ways to teach. Podcasted lectures allow a student to replay over and over as many times as needed until the concept is grasped. Being able to take better notes is a plus as well.

For only being launched for less than two years, iTunes U has made remarkable strides; and even more popular. Being a busy college student myself this could be very useful. I could download podcasts onto my ipod and have them while I am on the go. And these days that where I seem to spend most, if not all of my time.

Using iPods for Instruction

IPod’s are amazing. I have an iPod touch and I absolutely love it! It’s so exciting how much things, like the iPod have been integrated into learning environments, especially over the past few years. I’ve discovered that they are capable of so much more than just listening for the use of listening to music. Some K-12 schools have started using the iPod to enhance their curriculum and learning objectives.

The results from Duke University were surprising. Over 1,600 students received a 20GB iPod. You can review this experience at this link. Many of the iPod’s were distributed to music and foreign language students, it was applied to other courses as well however.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Sunday, February 14, 2010

NPR Blog: Wikipedia
There is so much controversy with this site as to whether or not it is a reliable source of information. There are many pros and cons to this controversy. I myself am guilty of using Wikipedia (probably more than I should be using it) because of its easy accessibility and no matter what I am researching Wikipedia seems to ALWAYS have something to say about it. It’s quick and easy results seem to make it the first link on most search engines. This is where the cons come into play, however. Wikipedia always has something to say because anyone can put information on there, regardless if there is any truth to it or not. Therefore, this makes Wikipedia unreliable information. I wonder what percentage of the general public realizes that this site is not genuine. As educators, teaching students how to recognize the reliability of internet sites is an important concept that should be discussed and evaluated.

"What I've Learned This Year" by Mr. McClung
I really enjoyed reading this article from Mr. McClung about his first year of teaching. He had some intuitive things to share that I feel will be beneficial to me in the future. I am aware of how important being flexible is, and that not everything has to go verbatim with what was planned; as long as the student is learning. As important as flexibility is, communicating with your students is just as important. As teachers, we are responsible to help our students learn, so it’s imperative that we present it in a way that they can understand.

The statement that stuck with me the most was when he said ‘never stop learning’. Every day and every school year will offer something for me to learn as well as teach. Learning is a lifelong process and we will never know all there is to know. That’s what makes the learning process so fun and exciting.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom:

This video made me see and think about things from a different perspective. The possibilities seem endless. Before this class, I never really took into consideration just how important integrating technology into the classroom is. Things like podcasting really can benefit the student and the teacher. Not only are there benefits for the student and teacher; parent involvement is a benefit that comes from this as well. It allows them to be in tune to what their children are learning in school by seeing/hearing what is going on.

Different ways to learn and increasing creativity are two things from this video that I found to be huge perks immediately. Something else that made me elated even more was the opportunity for distance learning that it gives to absent students; allowing them to stay on task and on top of things. It was really neat to see students being able to learn wherever they are. It is allowing us to take learning to the next level. I believe that once I am in the classroom and a teacher I will use podcasts as well.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Media Literacy in the First Grade
This video was amazing! I couldn’t believe that first graders are blogging. When I think back to when I was in first grade, I don’t think I knew how to operate a computer, much less blog. So much has changed since I was that age, it’s astounding. Truthfully, it’s quite evident that children today know more about technology and are more technological than adults. If this is how much has changed since I was that age, I wonder…what will it be like 10 or 12 years down the road? What will children know how to do then?

Little Kids Big Potential
I loved this video! It was so exciting to see children interacting and using technology as a learning tool. These kids are becoming comfortable with technology that it is becoming second nature to so many of them. How awesome is that? Not only is it a fun, different approach to learning, they are also being prepared for the future, which I’m sure is full of even more technological advances. The potential of what lies ahead for these children is amazing and beyond our imagination.

One-Year-Old Uses iPhone
I was almost 16 years old before I got my own cell phone. I mean, I knew how to operate one; however it certainly wasn’t an iphone. I was so shocked that a one year old, a baby was able to maneuver technology like this. Chances are that this child has watch his parents and other adults use their phones. Look around, we go nowhere without seeing people on their cell phone. But when I stop to think about it, how much do I rely on my cell phone? It’s the one thing I can guarantee that I will always have on me. It’s as if I wouldn’t know how to function without it. Our society is so dependent on these mechanisms that it’s almost hard to believe that it’s real. The young child is living proof that technology is permeating throughout every facet of our society, even the very young.

Before this class I had never heard of a podcast, and if I had, I had never given much if any thought to what it was. I was worried I would have no idea where to start or find ones I would enjoy, but I was wrong. This has the potential to be an excellent learning and teaching tool. The potential of tapping into other learning communities, schools, and even cultures is astounding. Podcast is a tool in which I will utilize.

Smart board is another amazing teaching and learning tool that is being used in many classrooms. I particularly enjoyed this podcast because of how relevant it is to me. My classes here at South have moved to the smart board and it won’t be long before I have a classroom of my own, and I will also be utilizing this tool. It’s very important that I know how to properly use this device and know what its capabilities are. The more I know about these tools, the more my students will benefit.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday, January, 24, 2010

Michael Wesch: A Vision of Students Today
This was a fascinating video. It provides a glimpse into the lives of today’s children. The video serves as a reminder of exactly what it is like to be in their shoes. I can definitely relate to MANY if not most of the signs that some of the 200 students in Michael Wesch’s class at Kansas State University were holding. It really got me thinking about issues that I have not considered. Just like my generation, some of the technological opportunities that are at our fingertips do not result in good habits.

Spending an excessive amount of time on social networking sites, like…facebook, is definitely something I am guilty of. When in my apartment, with all of the best intentions in the world, I will start to read to prepare for class the next day or begin studying for a test; then, I become drawn to the computer. I tell myself I’ll only sign on for 5 minutes but more often than not, those 5 minutes turn into an hour or even two!

Knowing the time that I waste, I am thankful that I did not have this “force” distracting me when I was younger. It makes me wonder what will the negative effects be on these young minds.

"It's Not About the Technology" by Kelly Hines
Kelly Hines addressed quite a few factors in this post that I completely agree with. There were four in particular she listed that related to education with technology. The first was teachers must also be learners, the second was on teaching and learning not always being the same thing, the third was related to technology being ineffective and essentially without good teaching, and the fourth factor was on a 21st century without technology.

We need to be willing and open-minded to learning daily. Finding ways to enhance learning is just as crucial and important as learning itself. Going hand-in-hand with that, one of the points Mrs. Hines made was technology being ineffective without good teaching. Technology can make a world of difference, however, teachers much be willing to learn how to use it so they can pass it along to their students otherwise there is a lot of money as well as time being wasted. Technology is a tool that must be used in a 21st century classroom, but with any tool, teachers are still the key component to good teaching.

Is It Okay to Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher?
Karl Fisch, who is the author of The Fischbowl and Director of Technology for Arapahoe High School posted an essay in 2007, and in it stated: If a teacher today is not technologically literate – and is unwilling to make the effort to learn more – it’s equivalent to a teacher 30 years ago who didn’t know how to read and write. It’s getting increasingly harder for teachers to successfully run the classroom while being technologically illiterate. I’m not saying all teachers have to know about the latest gadgets and everything about technology, however, they must be technologically literate. They must be willing to learn and use technology in the classroom. Students are expected to compete in a global society and be prepared to be problem solvers using technology. Five years ago teachers were challenged with using technology to present material. Now, they should be teaching students to use technology to solve problems and create new products.

The comparison between a teacher who doesn’t know how to read and write and a teacher who doesn’t use technology is harsh, however, with the increasing technological advancement of our world, this comparison is becoming a reality.

Gary Hayes Social Media Count
I think my jaw was wide open not even 10 seconds into watching this. I think astounded and overwhelmed by the numbers are two words to describe how I felt. It is amazing how much these numbers change every single second. This is proof that the world is in constant motion and constantly changing. What does this mean to me as an upcoming teacher? I think this is enough to show how important it is for teachers to have some technological background and understand what is going on not only with technology, but in the world.

The internet has had a booming increase over the past year. Some of the statistics that stuck out the most were: there are 900,000 blog posts that are put up every day. 20 hours of video are uploaded to You Tube every minute and Facebook has 600k new members every single day. These numbers are hard to believe and it really makes you realize just how huge of an industry the web is and how much people rely on it in their daily lives.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Did You Know? & Mr. Winkle Wakes

This video was incredible. I was in awe at all the facts it presented. Did you know we live in an ever-changing society? Did you know how technological this world we live in is becoming? Did you know how we compare in comparison with other countries? I believe the purpose of this You Tube video was to evoke a sense of wonderment about the future. The video gets us thinking about where we are and where we are going in this world full of technological advancements. It makes me think of the need to become more open-minded. This is an essential attribute that is needed in accepting the changes and becoming lifelong learners instead of resisting the inevitable and being left behind.

If we are not willing to accept change and do things differently we will indeed be left behind. The same thing is true for our future students. If they do not learn to become problem-solvers and team players their choices and opportunities for their future will be limited in the ever-changing technological world that lies ahead. Educators today and tomorrow must be able and willing to expose their students to the opportunities that await them in our technological world so that they are prepared to compete world-wide in the job market.

The “Did you Know” video provides us with some astounding facts and statistics about how much has changed and how much progression has taken place. This leads into Matthew Needleman’s video, “Mr. Winkle Wake’s”. It’s unbelievable how much the world is and has changed. The integration of technology plays a large role and makes us realize that the outside world needs to be incorporated into the classroom. Keeping up to date with technology and changes will allow us and our students to be constant learners and not fall behind.

It is definitely true how much times have changed over the last 100 years. However, the fact that as they video progressed and Mr. Winkle felt comfortable going into the school because it was the same as it was 100 years ago is not particularly true. I have volunteered at several elementary schools and all of these schools have integrated technology into almost every lesson, between smart-boards, computers, and activities on the internet. Not only did I think the use of technology was a great learning tool, I noticed how much the children loved getting to learn via technology. The children we will be educating are the children of tomorrow and will rely on technology to function in their daily lives. Educators are learning to immerse their students in presentations through technology. Now, their challenge is to teach students to use the technology to create new products and solve problems.

“Why Don’t we get the Best out of People”

“We are educating people out of their creativity.” Ken Robinson believes that because of the fact that we are being educated to become good workers, instead of creative thinkers. I agree with the ideas that he presented. He really opened my eyes to how important creativity is. Creativity should be nurtured. How dull would our world be without artists, and creative thinkers, and people who bring color and beauty into it if they were told exactly how and where to create their art. Every child comes to school believing in themselves. After a child is in a structured classroom, their confidence in themselves begins to fade unless they adhere to “staying within the lines” of expectations.

Creativity is an imperative part in the education of a child. With the way our current curriculum plan is, teachers are solely focused on the emphasis of standardized testing; they are expected to “teach the test.” There is so much pressure being placed on memorizing facts for academic tests, that there is not much room for creativity, which results in creativity being placed on the backburner and forgotten about. If we changed our focus on the way we educate our children, maybe their true talent could be discovered.

Harnessing Your Students’ Digital Smarts

It’s definitely evident that Teacher Vikki Davis from Georgia has a passion for teaching. It’s inspiring to see someone who loves their job as much as she does. This was an incredible video. What stood out the most to me was the fact that the students get to teach the teacher. She is open-minded about teaching while using technology and drifting from the standard way many teachers use these tools. She took the information from the curriculum and applied it and made it work for her students.

She made a valid point when she said, “teachers do not have to know everything about what they are teaching.” There is always, and will always be something left to learn. All educators should be lifelong learners, not just in the traditional sense, but also in the everyday world of their classrooms. I feel motivated by her resilience and passion. How amazing it must be to enjoy what you do as much as she does! I would love to incorporate this type of teaching and learning into my classroom when I become a teacher.