Tuesday, April 28, 2009

My EDM 310 Blog Assignments Are Now Complete

Fellow classmates,

It has been wonderful with all of you in class and I had a great time exploring the world of technology with all of you. Good luck in your future plans and hope everyone has a safe and good summer!!! Class TT2 was the best class!!!!

EDM 310 Reflections

I believe that all of the tools we used and learned about during this semester will one day be helpful to us either as an educator or in life in general. I think the main thing that I personally enjoyed were the podcasts. I believe that this assignment not only showed us how the podcast technology worked, but it also taught use how to communicate with our peers. This is something that I find that our society is lacking. I thought that the presentations were important because they were a good tool to use to help introduce ourselves to one another. I also liked the blogs because I never realized how many people in the world actually communicate using that technological tool. I never really knew about Google Docs until I took this course, but I find it interesting how there can be several collaborators writing on one document at one time and they don't have to be in the same facility. I think that this tool can be useful as a teacher, because it allows teachers from the same school share ideas for programs without having to meet for hours during the day. It allows everyone to work on their own schedule. I enjoyed playing around on Picasa because I like taking pictures, but I don't think that I will use this tool with my students as a teacher. This class has really opened up my eyes to technology and all of the different tools that are available, for free, that I may and can use in my future classroom. I believe one thing that I would have liked to learn is a form of grading system or tool that could be useful in my classroom. I think right now I am against Twitter because the fact that everytime I try to explore it the site is over compacitated and I never can do anything. Like my group said in our podcasts, I believe there are better tools that can be used for education other than social networks. Overall I have learned a lot from this class and a lot of those things I will take with me into my future classroom.

Reflections on Communicating with Another Teacher

Throughout the semester I have been emailing back and forth with a teacher named Penny Ryder. I would first like to give you some background information about Penny as far as her educational experience. Penny Ryder teaches in the capital city of Australia, Canberra. Penny teaches in a government school system and they have rules for how often they have to move schools. A teacher will stay in their first school for four years, their second for six years, third for eight and then so on. They also have to change grade level, which is referred to as year in Canberra. I believe this is a good rule to have so teachers don't get burned out staying in one location for their entire career. She told me that she loved the diversity of teaching. She said that it stretches her mind and creativity. Penny also likes the fact that she gets to experience the learning alongside her students.

During our conversations I asked Penny what kind of technology does she use as a teacher and does she like the fact that there are so many technological tools. Penny likes the fact that she has access to a lot of different tools and she likes to explore how these tools can make her lessons better. Some of the tools she has access to for her classroom are an interactive whiteboard, four classroom computers, two digital cameras, a flip camcorder, an usb microphone, a class set of calculators, and they have access to the school computer lab one hour a week.

While thinking about technology and how much it has changed over the years, by biggest concern has grown into the fact that technology is going to change my relationship with my students. Therefore, I asked Penny Ryder if she feels that technology has changed the relationship of her and her students her answer was no. The reasons she gave me were because she cannot have online contact with her students, therefore her relationship with them is still face to face. She also told me that her role has a teacher may change due to technology, but she said that she has never seen herself as the "keeper of knowledge," but rather, I see myself as an experienced learner, learning alongside students and sharing the strategies that work.

I also gain some advice from Penny Ryder. She advised me to make a connection with the parents of my students the first time that I meant them. She told me that the key to working with parents was to make a positive start and a good first impression. She also told me to keep in touch with parents every week. In order to do this, she uses email and her blog to contact parents and for parents to contact her. She told me to always remember that if you have bad news to break to a parent to never tell them through email, always call or have a face to face appointment.

If you would like to view Penny Ryders blog, you can visit www.link4learning.blogspot.com or visit www.teachingchallenges.blogspot.com

Also, you can follow Penny on Twitter: pennyryder or Flickr: pennyryder

Sir Ken Robinson's Lecture

I found that this lecture was very interesting and gave the listeners a look into other people's lives. At the beginning of his lecture he states that people do their best when they are in their element. When he talks about being in your element he means the natural feel. What a person can do natural without any struggles. Sir Robinson states that he believes that it takes more than natural ability to do your best, it also takes a LOVE for the task. I agree with this statement to the fullest extent. The reason why I agree with this is because someone can be good at something but if they don't have the passion for what they do then they will never strive to do their best. This can happen in any situation. He also stated, "Being good at something doesn't mean that you should do it."

The second thing that really grabbed my attention about this lecture is the part about the young boy who inspired to be a fireman. Sir Robinson discuss that education is taking students away from their talents. In the book that he is discussing, he talks about a man who is now a fireman and how he struggled with teachers telling him that he would never aspire to make anything of himself. Our education system is now trying to motivate students to go to universities. As Sir Robinson states, not all people need to go to universities. The fireman that is talked about in his lecture, saved the life of that one teacher that told him that he could not aspire to be anything. At this point he had proven that teacher wrong. In today's society adults try to show a linear line of education and they don't plan for the children to go away from that line. In order for a child to be in their element we need to allow them to be creative and make their own choices.

Another thing about his lecture was human creativity. Sir Robinson states, "Creativity is as important as literacy." I agree with this because if students don't have creativity then they will never have a chance to create their whole dreams. Another thing that he said was, "If you're not prepared to be wrong, you will not come up with anything creative." What I believe he means by this is the fact that our children will never think outside of the box for the fear of being wrong. If we teach them that it is okay to be wrong then we will be teaching them how to be creative with their work. We should teach them how to succeed in their talents, rather than telling them to sit down and do this worksheet.

The next thing that Sir Robinson talks about is his definition of intelligence. He said that their are three things that make up the definition of intelligence. The first part is that intelligence is DIVERSE. The second part is that it is DYNAMIC. The third part is that intelligence is DISTINCT.

I truly agree with the points that Sir Ken Robinson makes throughout his lecture. While reflecting back on the education I received, I can see the points that he makes. I really enjoyed this information and will keep it in mind while teaching my own classroom full of young minds.

Monday, April 27, 2009


Twitter is a new social networking tool used by many people today. I had never heard of twitter until Dr. Strange told us about it in class. After that point I heard about twitter everywhere, on morning talk shows, the news, the radio, and other people. I have an account on twitter, but I only check it for class. I have a facebook account and I barley have enough time to check that. I have looked at some of the features of twitter, but right now twitter is a growing community and every time I try to do something it always tells me that it is "twittered-out." I believe that there are better forms of technology to use in the classroom other tan social networks that may cause my students to get side tracked.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spring Podcasts Review

I have just recently listened to several podcasts from a set of podcasts that my EDM 310 class put together as an assignment. I listened to the following podcasts:

A Discussion of "Did You Know? Shift Happens"

Technology in the Classrooms at the University of South Alabama

ACCESS- Distance Learning in Alabama High Schools

Facebook: It's In Class! But Can It Be Useful in Class? Pros and Cons

The Economic Crisis and How It Affects Alabama Schools: An Interview with Dr. Harold Dodge

After listening to these podcasts, I found a few improvements for future podcasters. I want to start first by saying that all of the podcasts that I listened to provided me with excellent information and some new information. I know from experience that some of us don't have that natural ability to talk into a microphone, knowing that millions of people could one day listen to it. One of the main things that I found while listening was that there was always one main talker in the group. As Dr. Strange told us before we started the podcasts, make it conversational. That was one tip I found that would help improve future podcasts.

Another improvement I found was that we all really didn't know how much sound that microphone could pick up. Trust me I didn't. In a few of the podcasts, including my own, a listener could hear paper shifting and people whispering. I know that this is one thing that my group and I talked about before our podcast, but we still shifted the papers. I believe next time I decide to do podcasts, I will try to limit my notes to one page so that I don't have to move the papers around.

Th last thing that I would like to touch on is the fact that we have to remember that we aren't just talking to the Mobile area. Therefore when we give out information about places we need to go into detail to give our listeners a good set of mind where we are talking about. That can even go for when we talk about different websites. I remember Dr. Strange tell us that we need to explain what certain thing are before we discuss them, because who knows who our listeners are. They could be learning about the Internet in the way that we are learning about podcasts, by doing hands on activities.

These are the few improvements that I found that could be useful for future podcasts. I enjoyed listening to all of the podcasts and I hope to hear more. If you would like to listen to the podcasts please visit: http://edm310pocasts.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Positives and Negatives of Blogging, Related to Education

This is my first time experiencing blogging. I think that there are many positive and negative aspects to blogging that could be useful in the classrooms. I recently read all of the posts of one of my fellow classmates. After viewing her posts, I realized that there were key elements in some of my posts that I left out and maybe some important factors, to me, that she left out. I think that blogging is an innovative way to communicate with your students.

The following are some of the positives that I found about blogging, as related to education:
1. It connects all your students, even if the are not in the same classroom.
2. Students can learn from other students blogs, because one student may find something out from an assignment, that another student missed.
3. It excites students to learn, because they are dealing with technology.
4. It can produce so accountability and responsibility for students.

The main positive that I would like to talk more about is the fact that blogging can connect your students with others at any point of time. In our society today, many people have different schedules and never sit down to do work at the same time. Therefore, with blogging students can communicate with each other or their teacher on their own terms. I love the fact that we can write our own assignments when it is convenient for me. I think that it is also important for students to comment on each others work because two people can view an assignment differently, but both can be right. Those are a few of the positive aspects about blogging that I found.

The following are a few of the negatives I found about blogging, as related to education.
1. It disconnects a student from their peers and their teachers. (You lose the one on one relationship.
2. Some students may not have access to the internet or computers.
3. May cause students to do assignments late, because it is on the computer and not just handed in to a teacher.

The one negative that I believe that is very important in society is the one on one relationships you develop with other people. By creating a blog, a person may lose the relationship aspect of communication because you are not talking face to face. It is important to establish a good relationship with everyone of your students, as a teacher. If we only communicate through the internet, I have no idea if that student is really doing the work. If I don't know the student behind the work, how am I suppose to establish good relationship with that students. These are just a few of the negatives that come to my mind when thinking about blogging for educational purposes.

All in all, I believe that blogging is a good tool to use in a classroom. I strongly believe that it should not be the only form of assignments a student should have in the class.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

"Growth" vs. "Fixed" Minds

In this video podcast, a Professor of Psychology named Carol Dweck discusses the difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. Mrs. Dweck explains that a fixed mindset is when a person believes that their basic intelligence is a fixed trade. These people worry about if they are going to look smart or be smart before they complete or start a task. They base their activities on whether or not their intelligence will show. People with growth mindsets believe that their intelligence is something they can develop through passion and studying.

Carol Dweck developed a workshop for students, where they we placed into two different groups for eight sessions. One of the groups learned study skills and the other group learned study skills and a growth mindset. The students that were placed in the study skills group, their grades just declined because they had no motivation. On the other hand, the group that was taught the study skills and the growth mindset showed improvement in their grades. The growth mindset sessions included teaching the students that their brain develops everyday and were taught how to apply it to their school work. Even their teachers could tell the difference in the students that were placed in the growth mindset, but the teachers had no idea that there was two different groups.

In my future teaching I believe that I could use this video podcast in many ways. The first would include the mentor part. This would help me become a better teacher because I am a mentor to my students. They look to me for advice and confidence to succeed in the classroom. I will teach my students that same things that were taught to the students that were part of the study skills and growth mindset group. I believe that in our society that the people with the "fixed" mindset have the toughest times, especially in a classroom. There are many activities in a classroom that deal with speaking in front of the class and if my students have the "fixed" mindset, we would get no where in these class discussions.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Video Podcasts in the Classroom

I recently viewed a video podcast on iTunes from the WGBH Teacher's Domain group. After viewing this podcast I realized how useful they could be to teachers and their students in the classroom. They are very interesting and can capture your students attention. If you visit iTunes you can find many podcasts on a wide range of subjects. I believe there is a podcast that will match every subject in the education.

Another reason why I believe video podcasts could be useful in the classroom is because they are free to access. As everyone knows, educational funding is at a strict budget and many teachers have to dig into their own pockets for resources for the classroom. By having access to these free podcasts, teachers can still use videos as instruction, but at less expense for the school systems.

If you would like to view podcasts you can download iTunes at: www.itunes.com. After downloading iTunes, go to the iTunes store and click on podcasts. At this point you have an unlimited number of podcasts at your fingertips.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Edutopia Podcasts

I recently visited the Edutopia website and listen and watched two different podcasts. These podcasts help teach students about hands on activities that will maximize their learning abilities. The first podcast that view was "A Night in the Global Village." This podcast consisted of a class taking a field trip and living in someone elses shoes, and I am not talking about a celebrity. The students were assigned to a group that would construct a family from impoverished parts of the world. Each group was given something that would help them make it through the night, but they didn't have everything they needed. In the end they would have to persuade the other groups to trade materials. At the end of their experience, they talked about the hard times that they faced and how people are faced with these troubles everyday of their life. This experience taught the students in a way that will stick with them throughout their life, instead of just reading it out of a book. If you would like to view this information you can visit: http://www.edutopia.org/night-global-village.

The second podcast that I listen and watched was called "The Edible Schoolyard." This showed students working out in the garden planting food and flowers, watering the garden, and any other things that a garden needs. While at first it may look like a gardening class, the teachers go into a great detail to incorporate science, social studies, and math. The students learn these things my doing hands on activities. One of the teachers in the podcast stated that they learn better because they have more to do with their learning process. If you would like to view this video, you can visit: http://www.edutopia.org/edible-schoolyard-video.

I think these podcasts will be helpful to me as an educator, because I can show these to my students and then I could incorporate some of the same ideas into my lesson plans. If you would like to visit the entire Edutopia website please visit: http://www.edutopia.org.

iTunes University

iTunes University (iTunes U) is a free educational approach of bringing technology into the classrooms. Although it is called iTunes University, it can be used for grade levels ranging from elementary school to college. Throughout the iTunes U store, teachers, administrators, students, and parents can download videos, audio, and many more informational tools to maximize the learning experience. iTunes U covers the entire curriculum and is not focused on one topic. It is a user friendly site and has an easy to use search engine. On the main page of the iTunes U store, you can find links to science, social science, history, language, mathematics, teaching and education, fine arts, and many more educational tools.

As an educator I could use iTunes University to download class lectures for my students to refer back to when studying for tests. I could also have students explore the site and have them find tools that are useful for the class discussions of the day. This is a great tool for classroom teachers because it provides a way for you to connect you class with the technological advances of the world. This is also a free site, so the school or the educator does not have to worry about having the funds to run it.

If you would like to setup an iTunes account, you can visit http://www.itunes.com.
For the introduction to iTunes University, you can visit http://www.apple.com/education/guidedtours/itunesu.html?cid=ITS-ITUMAIN080829-CN4X9.

iPods in Education

Throughout my research I found a lot of information about using iPods as an educational tool. The first set of information that I found was about Duke University giving an iPod to each incoming freshmen in the fall of 2008. They stated that the iPod was preloaded with freshmen orientation information, an academic calendar, and the Duke fight song. The university has also developed a site, modeled after iTunes, that the students can visit to download course content, recorded lectures, foreign language lessons, audio books, and music. The school's overall goal is to expand the use of information both in the classroom and in the campus community. If you would like to view this article you can visit: http:///www.wired.com/entertainment/music/news/2004/07/64282.

The second part of the information that I found was from New Mexico State University. The article is titled "Ideas on Using iPods in Education." They developed a project called "NM Matrix Project." This project is part of a multi-state, national initiative on using mobile devices in the classroom. The team plans to use the iPod in their work to increase math skills of middle school students. They created the use of the iPod based on three development models.
1. Give students an iPods that are pre-loaded with audio, video, photos, and interactive text.
2. Create custom games specifically for the iPod.
3. Use the iPod as a delivery device for content developed by students.
On the website they list several approaches to take when using the three models. The approaches under model #1 include:
1. Take advantage of after school spare time, extending learning beyond the classroom.
2. Pose problems that will be addressed in class, establishing an inquiry-based approach.
3. Add context to concepts that were already taught by giving examples that are relevant.
4. Give visual pictures of math. Using photos, we can load a series of photos that students can 'scroll through' using the thumbwheel on the iPod.
5. Reach parents with videos and photos that are designed just for them.
6. Engage students with interesting facts and concepts, supplementing classroom instruction.
Then model #2 includes:
1. Move beyond simple quiz and reward game play.
2. Integrate the learned skills as a crucial component of game play, so that you succeed in the game by employing what is learned.
Finally model #3 includes:

1. Video development assignments where students are asked to demonstrate or teach skills gained to others.
2. Regular Podcasts, through which students tutor others on using games or learning concepts.
3. Videos demonstrating what has been learned to parents or administrators.

If you would like to view the entire New Mexico State University Article, you can visit http://aces.nmsu.edu/academics/ipod/index.html.

Dr. Alice Christie's Website Review

After viewing Dr. Alice Christie's website at http://alicechrisitie.org/, I found two different uses of technology that I would like to incorporate into my classroom. The first form of technology that I found is under the section "Dr. Christie's Electronic Portfolio Resources." I think that an electronic portfolio will be helpful because it allows students to submit work early. Many students like to get an assignment done and out of the way, but many techers will not accept the assignment early because they don't want to have to collect the same assignment and number of times. An electronic portfolio will allow a teacher to accept work early without the pages being stacked on the desk.

The second use of technology that I believe will be helpful in my classroom is under the section "Dr. Chrisite's Digital Media and Photography Resource." I absoulty lve to take pictures, because I believe in the saying "Take a picture, it will last longer." In my classroom, I would like students top engage in photography when we are on field trips, doing art or science projects, or when we have other exciting events in the classroom. I beileve that by taking pictures, it can help students understand the steps they take to solve different problems and in the end, it may help them correct their mistakes. These are two uses of technology that I would enjoy using in my classroom as an educator.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Can Wikipedia be trusted?

In my opinion Wikipedia cannot be trusted as a source for any kind of information. Although Virgil Griffith created a "Wikipedia Scanner", people can still log on from a proxy IP address and change information. I believe that too many students, elementary to college level, depend on the internet for information, but that is how are society is today. In order to get accurate and true information, someone needs to either look it up in a book or find an internet site that is secure and not open to the public. Throughout my education, I know I have been tempted to use Wikipedia as a source, but my teachers made it clear that it is not an accountable source. I believe that every teacher should banned the use of Wikipedia as a source when gather information for a research paper, project, class dicussion, etc. Even though looking for information on Wikipedia is easy, it may not always be helpful.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Randy Pausch's Last Lecture

Randy Pausch's lecture is inspiring to anyone who listens to it. People can interpret this lecture on many different levels. Although he doesn't strictly outline techniques into one profession, all of them can be related to the professions around the world. As a future teacher, I will use the techniques that he talked about in my own classroom. Anyone who is a teacher or a future teacher would benefit from listening to this lecture.

This first point that Randy make in his lecture is that you can't change the cards you are dealt. As a teacher, you may be placed with a group of students that have the reputation of being the "worse students in the school", but you can't change the students you are given. One thing that you can change is the attitude in which you have and the attitude of these students. It is not the job of a teacher to blame others for these students actions, but it is the teacher's job to change these actions.

The whole lecture is focused on childhood dreams. In a classroom, teachers should encourage these dreams even is they are far fetched. Students need to have specific dreams of their own and not dreams influenced by their parents, siblings, peers, or teachers. We as teachers should be influenced by the dreams of our students and only help them to achieve these dreams. In order for any dream to come true you have to work hard and be determined to climb all obstacles.

Throughout life we are all faced with obstacles. As teachers, we don't want to be the obstacle of one of our students. We rather help these student face and climb over these obstacles. In Randy Pausch's lecture he talks about "brick walls." He states, "Brick walls are there for a reason; they let us prove how badly we want things." These walls are there to let people show their dedication and not to keep us out. As an educator, we should be helping these students face these brick walls and push them to succeed in everything they do.

The most important thing he talked about in his lecture was about "head fakes." His definition of a "head fake" is indirect learning. For example, he said that through football he learned the most valuable lesson of team work, not just how to do a three point stance. In a classroom "head fakes" can be used when working in group activities, working as a group to keep your area clean, learning a song that help with a specific skill, and many more. Many students learn better in a hands on environment.

Randy Pausch had many important things that I think are important for everyone to know. The following is a list that I feel will encourage people to reevaluate their life and/or profession:
1. Anything is possible.
2. Experience is what you get when you don't get what you want.
3. If no one is helping you when you mess up, that means they no longer care.
4. When you get pissed off or angry at someone, that means you just haven't given them enough time.
5. They way you say things can come across in either a good or bad way.
6. You can't get there alone, people have to help you.
7. Don't complain, just work harder.
8. Don't bail, the best gold is at the bottom of barrels of crap.
9. Find the best in everybody; no matter how long it takes them to show it.

After listening to this lecture, it has inspired me to want to focus on what is important to me as a person and as a teacher. It makes me realize that life is too short to worry about petty stuff and it that the way you live your life can inspire others. I think this lecture would be a wonderful tool to show students, teachers, future teachers, and anyone else who has a public profession. After all we are inspired by the people that come into our lives. The "head fake" of this whole lecture was: "It is not about how you achieve your dreams, its about how to lead you life. If you lead your life right, the dreams will come to you."

If you would like to watch this lecture please visit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ji5_MqicxSo

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Fall 2008 Podcasts

The first podcast that I listened to was My Classes at South: How is technology used in them? I think this would have been a better podcast if they talked more fluently. The way they speak throughout the podcast makes it seem like they have a script sitting right in front of them. The students took turns talking, but you could tell they were waiting on each other to finish their sentences; instead of going with the flow. Although they had good points in their podcast, they sounded more like actors on a commercial. To make this podcast better they could have made it more as a conversation of them talking than every sentence being read off a piece of paper.

The second podcast that I listened to was Possibilities for Using Facebook in Educational Settings. The one thing that I didn't like about this podcast was that one person did all of the talking at one point and then the other one came in and talked strictly at that moment. I think one thing that they could have done to make it better would be to take turns talking, but not have it lined out that they come in at certain points. I believe that by mixing up the person talking, that your listeners would be more interested in the topic.

Now I am not an expert on podcasts, nor have I produced one yet. These comments and critiques are based on my personal opinion. I will soon be doing a podcast and then you can comment on how well I do. For the time being though, if you would like to listen to these two podcasts and many more from the 2008 Fall Semester please visit: http://edm310fall08podcasts.blogspot.com/

My Family & Friends

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Best of the Fisachbowl Part 2

I have just recently viewed the February addition of The Best(?) of The Fischbowl 2007. The February post was titled "A Formula For Success?" and the topic was focused on math assessments. Every past, present, and future student knows that there is only one "right" answer to a math problem. We are faced with it everyday in the classrooms. Karl Fisch puts math assessments into a different perspective for all of his readers. He acknowledges that math skills are important, but the way they are presented makes the students feel like they are useless to them. Every student at one point in their life as said "Why do I have to do this? It's not like I will ever use it again." and I am also guilty of this same quote. Throughout this blog post you will find a better understanding of how math assessment questions should be presented.

In Karl's post he ask four simple questions for everyone that has graduated high school to answer. They are as followed:

1. Write down the quadratic formula from memory.

2. Assuming you were able to complete number one, explain what a, b and c stand for in the quadratic formula.

3. Assuming you were able to complete both number one and number two, explain –in detail - when, why, how and for what you would use the quadratic formula in a math class.

4. Assuming you were able to complete numbers one through three, now explain – in detail – when, why, how and for what real-world situation you would use the quadratic formula.

He asked these four questions to prove that not every math skill will be carried with a student throughout their lifetime. I completely agree with Karl when he says that we need to apply math problems to real world experiences. To finalize what his whole post is about, we as educators need to think of new ways to present problems to students. These problems need to associate with the "real-world" and not just with the next section or chapter in math. They need to be carried throughout the chapters of a thing we call life.

If you would like to read Karl Fisch's full blog post please visit: thefischbowl.blogspot.com/2007/02/formula-for-success.html

My answers to the four questions were are followed:


2. They are the coefficients of the polynomial function y = ax^2 + bx + c

3. All it is used for is to find the roots of a polynomial equation of the form y = ax^2 + bx + c, when it can not be simplified.

4. You can use it how to find the trajectory of a projectile while its in the air which is y(t) = vt - 1/2gt^2.

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Best of Fischbowl- September 2007

After reading this blog post by Karl Fisch on Technologically Illiterate Teachers, I agree completely with his statements. During his post her refers to reading and writing as the skills needed in previous centuries and in today and future times he refers to technology as the most important skill to be successful. I can see the aspect that he is referring to because everything in our world is technology based. If you plan to be successful in years to come, you can't be technologically illiterate.

In today's times, many things are technological. For example, I am a student at the University of South Alabama and all of my classes are web-based. This means that I have to be technologically skilled in computer skills or I wont be successful in my classes. There are many other things that are based off of technology: paying bills, communication, banking, traffic lights, all restaurant orders, and many other things. Just like Karl said in his post, if we don't practice these skills and do these skills, how are we going to teach the kids. This is why I agree completely with Karl in saying that teachers can't be technologically illiterate, because if they are who is going to teach the young minds of the children?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Podcast Review

I enjoyed viewing all of these podcast because they all had important information that can help teachers in a wide variety of areas. While searching through iTunes for these podcast, I realized how helpful podcast can be. There are podcast on many different subjects that will be useful in the classroom. Below are a few of the podcast that I visited to help be with this post.

The first education podcast I listened to was Smartboard Lessons. At the beginning of this podcast, the podcasters were talking more about where they were and the weather, instead of the topic of the podcast. Once it started though, I had good points that can be used in the classroom. The second one I listened to was Kidcast. This site got straight to the topic which was good. I really thought how he was explaining how to integrate podcast into the classroom will be helpful to any teacher. The next site I visited was EdTechTalk, which was very interesting because it had many different people informing you on the topic. I liked it the most out of all the podcast because I got to hear the view of more than one person.

After I finished searching and listening to the education podcast, I then listened to the MacBreak Weekly 125. This podcast talks specifically about Macintosh systems. Some of the topics they talked about was iLife '09, Steve's health, laptops, you-tube hd, and a lot more topics. I enjoyed this podcast because it brings you up to date about electronic stuff. The nest podcast I listened to was This Week in Photography. During this podcast they were talking about being a photographer at the inauguration of President Obama. This was an interesting podcast because it kind of puts you there with them as these men were taking the photographs.

This is my first time listening to podcast. I really enjoyed being introduced to podcast because this is a way for someone to gather the perspective of others without a formal interview. I also find them interesting because even though some of the podcast have a number of people on them, they don't all necessarily have to be in the same place. If you have never viewed a podcast before, take my advice and listen to one.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

International School Blogs

Traill International School- Students
The first international school blog I found was titled The All New Traill Blog Campus Site. This blog was a site for the entire Traill International School, not just specific classes. This blog was created as a place for students and teachers to share their work and achievements. While visiting this blog you can find updates on sport activities, you-tube post, club information, podcast, post and download homework, and so much more. The Traill International School's main plan is to have a blog for each class that is offered in their curriculum. If you would like to visit the school blog and explore for yourself, please go to: http://traillschoolblogs.com/.

The second blog that I found was the Shu Ren International School Blog. This site provides parents, students, faculty, and visitors with information about the school in general, events going on, and so much more. ON the blog, it also provides you with a link to the original school website. This blog gives information about admissions, adult classes, after school programs, facilities, faculty, press coverage, programs, summer camps, staff, and uncategorizeShu Ren International Schoold stuff. Some of the posts are titled Join Us On Facebook, Winter After School Classes, Shu Ren Featured on Local Websites, and Open House This Week. If you would like to visit this blog, go to: http://shurenschool.wordpress.com/.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Blogs in K-12 Classrooms

Mrs. Newingham's Class
The first classroom blog in the U.S. that I found was Mrs. Newingham's third grade class blog. As the teacher, Mrs. Newingham updates the site with new information regarding the achievement and status of her class. This blog is used for students' friends and family to keep up with what is going on in the classroom. As you explore this site you can find the daily schedule of the class, class activites, weekly newsletters, teacher resources, classroom celebrations, field trips, and so much more. This teacher uses this site for a way to let parents know what is going on in the classroom on a day to day bases. If you would like to view this site please visit: http://hill.troy.k12.mi.us/staff/bnewingham/myweb3/alberyhome.htm.

Mr. Parker's Fifth Grade Class
The second blog that I found was Mr. Jason Parker's fifth grade science class from Salem Elementary School. He uses the blog to address his students' parents. This blog provides a way for parents to keep up and know what is going on in their child's class without having to contact the teacher everyday. Mr. Parker also post podcast for parents and pictures for them to view and see how their child is interacting in the classroom setting. He also provides links to other class blogs so that parents can visit other classes as well. There is also a place for views to subscribe to RSS feeds from the blog on new entries or comments. If you would like to visit this blog please visit: web2.burke.k12.nc.us/blogs/jparker.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Fischbowl Video

After viewing the video from Fischbowl, I am not surprised but overwhelmed about how the technology has produced over the years. When I was in middle school, I never even had a cellphone, I used a computer maybe once a week, and myspace wasn't even a website. Although I have known that technology has increased over time, I had no idea to what extent it has been updated. I wasn't able to have a cellphone until I was sixteen and even at that age I still didn't use text messaging. In today's times you see an eight or ten year old with a cellphone, but that is where technology has led us.
In my houseold growing up, I didn't spend my time on the phone, computer, or playing gaming systems, I was enjoying the outdoors. I believe that within the last year I have used more technology than I did the other eighteen years of my life. Today it is uncommon for someone not to own a computer. It is hard to look back and see how I made it without google giving me all the answers, facebook connecting me to my friends, email that connects me with my teachers, and the internet in general. I believe that in the years to come, we will have transformed into a technological based world in all aspects of our lives. One question that comes to me is, what will my classroom be like when I start teaching? Will I be teaching via internet? Will there be no need for paper? Or will we be to the point where there is no such thing as an educator because will we be entirly depended on the world wide web?

Alabama Connecting Classrooms, Educators, and Students Statewide

The Alabama Connecting Classrooms, Educators, and Students Statewide (ACCESS) Program was developed by the Alabama Department of Education to implement distance learning. The Department of Education provides this program to give high school students the opportunities to participate in Advanced Placement (AP), elective, and other courses which may not be offered to them in a regular classroom. These technological courses take place during regular school hours in an ACCESS lab available in the school. The instruction for these courses will take place through web-based programs, face-to-face instruction via internet, and real time videoconferencing (IVC). IVC is a two way audio and two way video instruction that provides students with immediate feedback The objectives for ACCESS are to provide access to: Advanced Diploma Courses, Additional Course Offerings, Advanced Placement or Dual Enrollment/Credit Courses, Remediation and Supplemental Resources, Teachers with Multimedia and Technology tools to enhance instruction, and Leverage Existing Resources and Distance Learning Offerings.
In order to visit this site, go to http://accessdl.state.al.us. When you reach the website, at the top of the page you will find eight different tabs in which you can access information from. The tabs consists of About ACCESS, Courses, Students, Educators, Parents, Contact Us, Help, and Resources. This site is not just for the Department of Education to visit. This website is to help parents, students, and educators to better understand all aspects of the Alabama Connecting Classrooms, Educators, and Students Statewide Program. On this website, you can also find a list of high schools that have operating ACCESS labs, the plan for 2007-2010, the goals that have been met in the past years, and where they plan to expand the ACCESS labs to. There is also a powerpoint available at http://accessdl.state.al.us/showaccess.php?Ink=aboutaccess. I think this website will be helpful and useful to me as a future educator because the technological world is our future. This site gives us a glimpse at what the educational field will become. I also find it useful to help me inform my future students and their parents of the highest opportunities our education department has to offer.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Alabama Learning Exchange (ALEX)

The Alabama Learning Exchange (ALEX) is a resource provided online to teachers, students, administrators, and parents in the state of Alabama. On this website you will find access to a number of topics helpful for everyone involved in the education field. ALEX provides access to lesson plans, state standards, and web links to connect you to other helpful information. The Alabama Learning Exchange also provides you with your own personal workplace and a search engine tool for easy access to information throughout the ALEX database. Also available on the site are links to information on professional learning and distance learning.

The Alabama Learning Exchange is a helpful online source for veteran and new educators. It is a reference for all educators to turn to if they need important information. I feel like I can go to this website to find accountable lesson plans and educating activities for my classroom. ALEX is a site that connects you to different subject matters and topics by just visiting this one site. Searching on the web can be time consuming and as educators, our time is valuable. By connecting to ALEX you can have a large amount of information on one site. I believe that this is a way to connect teachers and administrators throughout the state of Alabama and it is a good resource to access to. For anyone that would like to visit the Alabama Learning Exchange website you can go to: http://alex.state.al.us. Anyone who is going into or is already participating in the education field will enjoy and appreciate this site. This is an effective tool for the state of Alabama's education department and is useful for many educators.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Little Bit About Me

My name is Kendra Leigh Hill and I am nineteen years old. I was born and raised in Mobile, Alabama, which is one of the reasons why I attend the University of South Alabama. I have lived in the same house all my life and I don't plan to move out until I graduate college. I have a brother who is five years older than me. I also have a niece who is four and a nephew who is three, they are adorable. I am an Elementary Education major and this is my second semester at South. My first year of college I spent at Faulkner State Community College, where I was on a softball scholarship. I decided to transfer early due to the excessive amount of classes I took during my first year. Some of my hobbies include softball, fishing, hunting, golf, basically anything outdoors, reading, and spending time with my friends and family. I also have a toy Yorkshire Terrier named Jersey. There is never a dull moment with him around. These are a few things about myself and I look forward to more posts.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Welcome To My Blog

Hello my name is Kendra Hill and I would like to welcome you to my blog. This is my first blog I have ever used so I hope you enjoy it!!!!!