About Me

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I am in love with Shaffer(my fiance) and we have been together for almost 5 years. I love to hang with my friends and just act crazy. I love being surrounded by wonderful family and friends.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Summary of C4K #8-#11 and Yasmine's Blog

Over the past few weeks I have been following several student's blogs and here is what they were writing about.

C4K #8

In this C4K I was looking at Alba's Blog and she had a picture she had taken of the USS Alabama and wanted us to look at it from an artistic viewpoint and come up with a name for the picture. I did what she asked and came up with "Guiding gate of the Sea" and although it maybe different it is original.

C4K #9

In this C4K I was following Chris' Blog and came across his description of his Choir's trip to New Zealand. He told of the fun things they were seeing and experiencing. He even posted a list of the songs they were going to be performing such as: "Get the Party Started" by Pink and "Feeling Groovy" by Simon and Garfunkel. He was very excited and I told him to keep up the great singing and to give another update when he returned.

C4K #10

For this C4K I was following Danielle and she was writing about how excited she was that her friend Haylee was coming over to spend the night and that they were going to have a great time together. I told her that her slumber party sounded like it was going to be a lot of fun and to not eat too much junk food before they tried to go to sleep.

C4K #11

In this C4K I was looking at Brianna H.'s Blog and she was told to explain "elapsed time". So to do that she gave an example of a boy named Sam who left at 2:00pm and returned at 2:45pm. She said that 45 minutes had elapsed. I told her that this was a great example and if she wanted to she could also relate this example to a math problem.

Yasmine's Blog

In this post we were to find Yasmine's Blog and comment on a post of hers. Well I got her post that had the video of the horse and the little girl who was training the pony. I thought the video was cute and I loved how well behaved the pony was for the little girl. It amazes me the things that animals are capable of.

Final PLN Report

this is a screen shot of my symbaloo personal learning network

I love my Symbaloo PLN( personal learning network) because as a person with OCD, it allows me to be completely organized. I keep all of my important and most used links on my page. If I need to add something or want to look up something, all I have to do is type it in the middle box and it will Google it for me. My Symbaloo allows me to customize to my needs and my likes and interests. This is one of the many tools I will keep from this EDM 310 class.

C4T #4 Summary- Jen Deyenberg

For this C4T I was assigned to read and comment on Ms. Jen Deyenberg Blog entitled "Trails Optional". The first of her post that I read was entitled Not for Your Edutainment- Great Online Educational Games which was about her wanting games that were challenging for students and not just a memorization game. She states that if the students just memorize the information, then they are not really learning and I have to agree. I think that too often students are given information to memorize and then tested on their memorization of the material and not what they really learned. The students do not learn this way and in this post Ms. Deyenberg gives some great links to find games that are challenging for students.

In the nest post I read entitled UK Microsoft Innovative Educators Forum- UKIEF #10. In this post she tells of her being at a conference and all of the great educational technological tools that she is seeing and is sharing them with everyone. Some of the tools sound really great and interesting like: Free Rice, Games for Change, and One Note. These are all to help educators help their students succeed and become more technologically advanced. She share these and many more great tools and stories on her blog so please feel free to stop by and look around. Just click Trails Optional.

Final Project #16 How to Make an A in EDM 310

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Additional Assignment #5

Just Teaching Them to Solve for "X"

In this post, I believe Mr. Spencer is trying to convey that we should not be afraid of explaining the hard subjects, programs, and anything else that we would deem "too dangerous" for them to learn or even try to comprehend. Students are smart and they need to, no have to know "why?" to even try and grasp a concept. What good are we to them if we only give them a formula and some paper and do not explain the "why?" They might as well higher a computer to put it up in the screen because we are pretty much doing the same thing on a white board. There is no critical thinking with students now a days and we need to educate them and not memorize them out of their curiosity.

Sketchy Portraits: 8th Grade Identity and Pencils

In this post, I believe the main point being made is that life is ever changing and the world outside is a scary place and as we grow and mature decisions in our life become more and more "permanent" to the point we are scared to make decisions at all. Although we don't want to we all have to grow up at some point, wether it is when teachers and society tell us to is a completely different thing. Enjoy the "pencil" while you can but do not be afraid of your "pen".

He Just Likes the Class for the Pencils

I believe the message here is that even though technology and tools are fun, great for teaching, and really engaging for students for a while. It is the relationship we have with our students that keep them interested and engaged all the time. If a student trust and believe that we have something important to say and we demand their best, then they will pay attention and give their best because they know it is expected. Students have to be engaged all the time or they will wonder off into dream land. We as teachers need to spend the whole class time teaching and not just giving them things to memorize or ditto sheets. They are entrusted to us to learn and not just to learn from the fancy "pencils"

The Medium Shapes the Learning

In this post I was blown away by the transformation to the final thought. I had never thought of something being misinterpreted if I had not intended for it to be. I believe that Mr. Spencer wants us to realize that every tool we use has to be open to interpretation because you never know where a lesson may go if you give it boundaries and who knows it could go somewhere unintended if you don't let the students try and surprise you.

Blog Post #13

Alabama Learning Exchange (ALEX)

ALEX is a network that is available to teachers who need help finding and making lesson plans, finding what is expected of each grade level and subject, and communicating with teachers all around the world to find new ways to help our students.

1. Their is a link for Lesson Plans and is will take you to a page where you can create your own lesson plans or look at other teacher's and draw ideas from that. It is separated in to subject and then grade. It is easy, fun, and extremely helpful to teachers of any subject and grade level.

2. Next there is a tab for Course of Study and this tab takes you first to all of the different subjects and then once you click on a subject it takes you to grade levels and then you select the grade you want to look at and presto. It takes you to a list of objectives and requirements for that class for that grade level so that you know what they are suppose to be learning for that year and that subject.

3.If you click on ALEXville it will take you to a picture of a globe that is surrounded by houses and depending on what you click, it will take you to a ton of different websites and choices of educational paths and you can explore for days to see what all is offered in this ALEXville.

I believe that ALEX will be very helpful when I begin teaching because being a new teacher it will be very helpful to know what my grade level of students need to be learning and doing at what point during the year and when I do lesson plans it will be nice to have someone with experience to look at and get and help generate ideas from for my students. Also them many tools available here will help me solve any problem them may come up.

Alabama Connecting Classrooms, Educators, and Students Statewide (ACCESS)

This website is for Alabama high school students who want to further their education by either finding a class they want to take that is not offered at their high school, finding and obtaining an alternative degree plan online, or finding test prep or review exams to help pass AP classes, ACT tests and college prep. This website seems like it is directly geared towards getting alabama students brought into the 21st century and being able to compete for good colleges and winning. This website offers many great learning opportunities for any and all Alabama high school students.

Project # 15

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Progress Report on #15

My partner is Ashley Goodwin and we have set up times to meet via SKYPE, e-mail, and phone calls to ensure we stay in constant communication about this project and all that it entails. This project came to me from out of no where. We are going to be shooting a video of "How to Make an A in EDM 310". We will show how to make Time Toast, a Symbaloo account, Comments for teachers, kids, and classmates, and everything else that is required to understand EDM and to make an A in this class. EDM is a lot of work but you learn everything you need to be a technologically literate teacher in today's rapidly growing technological society.

Project # 6- Questionnaire Results

This was a questionnaire that I sent out about SMART Boards and blogging in our educational system.
These are the questions and results of that questionnaire:

1. In any of your classes in elementary school, did your teacher ever use a SMART Board?

0- Said "Yes, K-2nd Grade"
0- Said "Yes, 2nd- 4th Grade"
0- Said "Yes, 4th- 6th Grade"
21- Said "No"

2. Did you have a blog in elementary school or even know what a blog was?

0- Said " Yes, I had a blog"
1- Said " Yes, I knew what a blog was but did not have one"
20- Said "No, I had no idea what a blog was in elementary school"

3. Did any of your middle school teachers use a SMART Board?

1- Said "Yes"
20- Said "No"

4. Did you use blogging in middle school?

0- Said "yes"
21- Said "no"

5. In any of your high school classrooms, did your teachers use a SMART Board?

0- Said "Yes, All of them"
3- Said "Yes, Math"
1- Said "Yes, English"
0- Said "Yes, Science"
0- Said "Yes, History"
4- Said "Yes, An Elective Class"
15- Said "No, None of my classes had SMART Boards"

6. Did you use blogging for assignment in high school?( on a scale from 0(Never)- 5(Always))

21- Said "0"
0- Said "1"
0- Said "2"
0- Said "3"
0- Said "4"
0- Said "5"

7. Did you know what blogging was before you got into Dr. Strange's Class?

15- Said "Yes"
6- Said "No"

8. Do you wish this class had been offered to you sooner?

2- Said "Yes, middle school at least"
8- Said "Yes, high school"
2- Said "Yes, first year of college"
9- Said "No, now is good"

9. How would you rate technology in the classroom? (on a scale from 1(Non- existent)- 5(too much))

1- Said "1"
7- Said "2"
11- Said "3"
2- Said "4"
0- Said "5"

10. Do you feel that we should be teaching students to use technology while they are learning their core classes?

21- Said "Yes"
0- Said "No"

11. Which of these do you feel would benefit younger students to know about?

12- Said "Google"
10- Said "Google Squared"
3- Said "Google Chrome"
2- Said "Safari"
10- Said "Wolfram Alpha"
3- Said "iTunes"
5- Said "Audacity"
3- Said "Drop Box"
0- Said "Wall Wisher"
6- Said "All of the Above"

12. Are you satisfied with the amount of technology you were offered in your academic career?

1- Said "Yes, I had everything"
13- Said "Kind of, it could have been better"
7- Said "No, I had no technology classes offered to me"

Looking at the results of the questionnaire, you can see that although our school system is getting somewhat better at introducing students to technology sooner, it is still lacking. Almost no one had seen a SMART Board or knew what a blog was in elementary school and most only learn nearer to high school. This class I believe is crucial to the development of giving our students the tools they need to survive in the technological age and if this class or a similar version was offered sooner then maybe it would not be such a struggle for those of us who did not even know what a blog was before entering Dr. Strange's Class. I believe the data speaks for itself.

Blog Post # 12

In this assignment we were told to create an assignment and then share it with everyone. Well one assignment that I feel we should have done was to create a Glog on Glogster. Glogs are a lot of fun and you can personalize them and use them for just about anything. I think these would be great to use as assignments or projects for students. The require almost no time at all.

To do this Assignment:
1. You need to go to the Glogster and create an account.

2. You need to set up your profile and I know everyone can do this because everyone has a Facebook or Twitter account.

3. Next click on the "create a new Glog" button and get started.

4. You need to select a page background, add graphics, add links you feel important and related to this Glog, and finally add text and effects to make you Glog interesting.

5. Save and Publish your final project and embed it in your Blog and tweet it.

This is one I created for EDM 310.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Blog Post #11

Ms. Cassidy's First Grade Class

        In these videos, there were a lot of great points made about technology and its' future in schools both Elementary and Secondary. Ms. Cassidy's class of first graders are doing things with technology that I just learned in my 3rd year of college.
         I think that all of the different tools Ms. Cassidy uses are extremely helpful and will benefit her students tremendously in their future classrooms. I think Mr. Cassidy is not afraid of any technology and will use any and everything she finds to help her students learn and succeed.
        I believe all of her techniques are great and would be beneficial in my classroom but I would most likely use  a web page, have the students do blogs, and use wikis. I am just not so sure about the Nintendo DS. I know that most students know how to use one, but I am just not sure what all you can teach students or what programs you could use that most principles would not consider games. I would love some feed back on this if anyone has some because I am just not familiar with them myself.
           I  know that using ms. Cassidy's approaches would benefit my future classroom greatly by having no fear in trying new things and being the "guinea pig" for a new idea for classrooms. I know just from being in EDM 310 how useful and wonderful Blogs are and I will keep one forever now and show my students them as well. Using the approaches she give will help get my future classroom off to a great start.

Project #14 Teaching How to Create A Time Toast

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Comments for Kids 3-7

C4K #3
        For this assignment the class was from Pt. England School in Auckland, N.Z. For this C4K I was assigned a group of students instead of just one. Their post was entitled, "Diggin' Up Loot" and it was a short excerpt for a pirate story they were working on together about a hunt for buried treasure. The student's who wrote it were: Ashlee, Frankie, Isara, Jonita, Kaylee, and Robert. I told them that I thought they did a great job and that I could not wait for them to post the rest of the story.

      In this C4K, I read a student named Ryan's blog and came across his post about skate boarding. I he said that he love to skate board and really like the skate park down the road. I told him that I use to skate board and I knew how hard it was so to keep up the good work. He thought it was really cool that a girl could skate board.

        This assignment was for Mrs. W's class in Australia and was for a student named Lucy. In one of her post she mentioned that her class had been watching the movie 'Cars" and that they had been talking about friendship, since that was the main idea of the movie. She mentioned that to be her friend you would have to be: kind, loyal, and have a good sense of humor. I told her that those are great qualities to look for in a friend and that I knew me and her would be good friends because that is also what I look for in a friend.

        In this post we were responding to students post in Mr. Goerend and Mrs. Quam's classes. I commented on Caitlin C.'s Blog on her post called, "My Awesome Blog". IN this post she describes a scary creature who has slimy gray skin, no eyes, and walks like a bear. She ends the excerpt with her looking out of her window and the night was "peaceful". I told her that she could really turn this into a great scary story and to keep up the great writing.

        This assignment was for Mrs. Gilbert's 5th Grade class and the student I commented on was Daniel. The post of his that I loved the most was his "Red Ribbon Week" post. He talked about how his school was discussing how to stay off of drugs and he said that he was pledging to never take any drugs for all of his life. I told him that was great and that the only things drugs do is kill your brain and harm your body. I also encouraged him to keep up the good work.

These were just 5 of the great C4K's I got to comment on. There are a lot of great kids all over the world and I hope to keep in touch with all if them as they continue to go through school.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

C4T #3 Mathew Needleman

During these past few weeks I have been assigned to read and comment on Mr. Mathew Needleman's Blog and now I am going to tell you about just two of the very informative post that I read on his blog.

Six Ways Teachers can Improve Education This Year

In the first post that I read entitled, "Six Ways Teachers Can Improve Education This Year", Mr. Needleman give six different ways teachers could and should improve their school for not only the students but the faculty as well. His first point was to say hello at the door as the students come in because this maybe the only kind thing they hear all day from teachers or anyone. second was to eat in the teacher cafeteria with the rest of the faculty even if they are being negative, maybe you could be the light of positivity and bring the "faculty family" together. His third idea was to teach the students authentic writing and make them define the purpose for their writing and teach them to write for themselves and not for their teacher. His fourth point was to incorporate Multi-Media into every lesson whether it be photos, videos, or CDs. The students would find this more entertaining and you could teacher them some about technology everyday. In his fifth point he talks about using art and a way to help you students find discipline and control and a way to use it further other subjects like using drums to learn rhythms. Lastly he says that teaching test prep for at least two minutes a day will prepare them for the game the school system like to call standardized test and says if they have to take it anyway, we might as well make sure they can play the game great.
I think that Mr. Needleman makes some great points and gives a ton of great ideas and think that this would defiantly change and help improve education.

3 Ways to Download Movies from Youtube

In this post Mr.Needleman give 3 different ways to download movies from Youtube and the ideas behind using each one. In the first way which he calls "the low-tech way", he suggest just downloading it at home and not closing the window but closing the computer and taking it to school and he says this is the best way if you only need to download one video. The second way is to use Zamar.com. This way allows you to put in a little work but to have a few movies downloaded at the same time. The last way is to use Download Helper for Firefox or Download Youtube for Safari. These two allow you to download a high volume of movies and work very well.
I want to thank Mr. Needleman for all of his great tips, tools and ideas and think that more people should follow his blog for more that I am sure is soon to come.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

SMART Board Interview- Project #13

Blog Post #10

Morgan Bayda and Dan Brown's Views On Education

In this Blog Post assignment, we were assigned to read Ms. Morgan Bayda's post on "An Open Letter To Educators" and also watch Mr. Dan Brown's video An Open Letter to Educators where they both come to the conclusion that if schooling does not change with the world, then the people will decide they don't need or want it. To be completely honest, I have to agree. As they said, the world is changing and is in full swing of the Information Age. The schools are still stuck in the old industrial idea of "get them in and get them out". I can personally attest to this and hate that schooling is such bad shape. We are taught that things and people change and evolve. Well the world is changing, but the public school system has not changed at all. Like Dan says, they have added some tools but that is not change and change is what the people and the Information Age need.
In my high school, the teachers didn't really care how we did our work but just that we followed the steps and got to some answer. We can't talk to our neighbors because then we get our work taken away for cheating. I can remember when thinking outside the box was encouraged and as you go up through high school for some reason we are now in the box and it is shrinking. I thought once I got to college things would be so different to the point I was scared to come but when I got here, it was just like high school except I didn't have to go all day. The only class that has challenged the way I think and the way I use to do things is this EDM310 that I am in. I have always been taught and now I am learning and doing everything myself. I still get help and instruction when needed but I am doing something I have not done in a long time, think for myself and actually learn something that will not be on the test.

Tom Johnson's "Don't Let Them Take the Pencils Home"

In this post Don't Let Them Take the Pencils Home  I love the fact that during the entire post, Mr. Johnson does not focus on the what could happen, rather on the solutions to the what is happening. If they take their pencils home and play word games, then they are still learning words. So what if their parents work in a factory and the children think they are toy, the school has set up a program for the parents to get involved and that should defiantly help. This post should tell us as teachers, we need to look at the fact that students are learning and we should encourage learning all the time.

Two Questions That Will Change Your Life

Two questions that can change your life from Daniel Pink on Vimeo.

This Vimeo is very inspiring and I have to say it is very motivating as well. Well this is My Sentence, "I will and am ever striving to make a difference in students lives and I will make time for my students to have FUN while LEARNING." School should never be too busy for students not to enjoy it. How else can we expect them to want to come to school and better yet want to come to learn if we don't make it fun and interesting for them. Answer: We cant't.

Additional Assignment #3

In Sir Ken Robinson's Video: Changing Educational Paradigms ,I think the most important point he makes is the one about the growing trend to medicate children with ADHD. Like Mr. Robinson says, I also believe there is so much going on in the world around us today that children cannot help but be distracted. Now also I am not say there is not this disorder but most of the children who are diagnosed with ADHD are just children who are artistic and are being starved of the creative outlet. The first thing to go in schools now if money gets tight is the art programs. This is horrible because the great thinkers of our time are not going to have anyone to construct their great inventions and ideas if we do not have creative tinkers to look outside the box to make things work. This will eventually be utterly devastating.
There is nothing in this presentation that I can disagree with that would not have great reason of rebuttal behind it. He makes great sense and points all throughout the presentation. Sir Ken Robinson's positions in this video run pretty congruent with what I am being taught in the college of education. The only major difference I see is the ADHD aspect, because the college of education just wants us to learn how to deal with it and not actually find a way to help them learn and express themselves. I feel the only things I can do to address the issues that Sir Ken Robinson raises is to try my best not to get caught up the 'get them in and get them out" craze and just make sure they learn and enjoy it. School is something we have to do for at least 13 years and I strongly believe that students can learn and have fun with it at the same time.
I thought the way in which the video was presented was very amazing and eye catching. I think it keeps your attention the entire time. I would however slowed it down just a little bit, because it was a little hard to keep up at times. If were to create a video like this, I would have to say that my job would have been Idea Generator or Author because I am not that great at the artsy stuff. I am way more right brain, as my fiance often reminds me.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Blog Post # 9 What I Learned This Year

 In this blog post we were assigned to read Mr. McClung's post entitled, "What I've Learned This Year". In this post Mr. McClung talks about the experiences he went through and observed during his first year as an elementary school teacher. He tells of him learning that school is for the students and not for the teachers. In his paragraph, "How to Read the Crowd" he says that "...I was so worried about how I was being assed by my superiors, that I lost touch with my audience when I delivered a lesson". I think we as teachers get this way sometimes and we have to step back and remember we are here for the students and no one else. The students and their future are what we need to focus on and not how perfect the lesson we made is going. Which transfers into his next paragraph, "Be Flexible" where he speaks about him trying to be aware of the fact that we are teaching students who " struggle remembering what they brought for lunch" and so we should not get upset and if a lesson doesn't go exactly the way we want it to. He gives us the advice that, "When things go wrong, simply work with it and try to better the situation... and make sure you do it with a smile on your face." I believe this is great advice because without being flexible, we are just being uptight and thus making the students miserable too. We just need to roll with the punches. Moving on through the post he comes to his thoughts on how important it is to, "Communicate". In this paragraph he expresses the importance of communication among our peers and students. He says without communication, the work place can become very volatile and work against the betterment of the students. He also says that communication is one of the hardest skills to develop and so we should practice all the time and I could not agree with him more on this. There is so much drama in schools and as teachers we should set en example for communicating and working out problems with others. In the next paragraph Mr. McClung talks about how to "Be Reasonable". In this he tells us how to not get upset when our students don't reach our expectations because at the end of the day, they are still children. I agree that we should not get upset but I will not lower my expectation because I want my students to know that I will never stop expecting greatness from them. In his paragraph on "Don't Be Afraid of Technology", he hilariously jokes about the fact that so many people are afraid of technology, but reassures them that, "... the water feel fine:)." I have to completely agree with him because I was afraid when I started this class but now I love it and I have learned so much.  In what I believe is a very touching paragraph, "Listen to Your Students", he tells of the absolute great importance of listening to our students because how can we teach them if we do not listen and get to know them. Lastly he talks about the fact that we should "Never Stop Learning". He puts it best when he says, "It is never too late to change your way of thinking, learning, or style." We as educators should be sponges and soak up all of the knowledge available so that we are better equipped to help and teach our students, they deserve it. I want to thank Mr. McClung for sharing his great insights into his first year of teaching because I know this has helped me feel a little less scared of my first year that is fast approaching.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Educational Time Toast

Blog Post # 8

Richard Miller: This Is How We Dream Parts 1 and 2

       I thought this video was very forward thinking. I had no idea that there was so much that we a teachers could do and produce on the internet. I believe that our students will benefit so much from all of the new technologies that are available and as teachers we should learn everything we can to make use we are as technologically advanced as possible.
        I believe that I am ready to write and help my students write great lectures and papers using Youtube and other videos sources thanks to this EDM class and all of the great material, such as these videos. There has been so much to learn and I am so glad that I am learning it and not running away from the future of teaching. Technology is amazing and as an educator, i will use everything I learn from all of the assignments to help better my students education.
        I know that if I do my job as a teacher then my students will be able to write and use any and all technology that I and the world will throw at them. Students now a days are so well versed in the internet that I know they will pick up on a lot of if not all of the material and technology. I have no doubt that since being in this class, I know how to find and look for new technology and information for my students and if I can't find something, I know who to look up and ask on Twitter.

The Chipper Series and EDM 310 for Dummies

        In the chipper series I thought it was about how most students feel when we get overwhelmed. We just quit and move on to something we think will be easier but nothing in this world will be easy if we don't get our education. I think these guys did a great job showing an bringing this message home.
       In the video EDM 310 for Dummies, I thought they did a great job portraying how every EDM student has felt at one point taking this class. I know that thanks to the Instruction Manual this class is a lot easier and with the help of the lab assistants, I know I will make an A in this class.
        If I created a video for EDM I would have to include everything about embedding and movie making because these are the two most difficult activities that I struggled with. I would asure students that once you get the hang of it, it is no problem. Also I would go step by step through each process and make sure I have written directions as well.

Critiques of Smart Boards 

       Why Smart Boards are a Dumb Initiative
             In this post by Michael Staton, he discusses reasons as to why spending so much money on Smart Boards is a dumb idea. He says that all they really do is make a white look more attractive. He gives several ways to which the things done on a Smart Board can be done also without one and for a lot less money. He also comes to the realization that the Smart Boards are just the way people higher up can ask for money because they are something specific. He believes instead of adding more Smart Boards, the schools should come up with new ways of helping the students learn and not just memorize thing for the SATs.

      Why I Hate Interactive White Boards
           In this article, Mr. Bill Ferriter states that he believes that Smart Boards are useless gizmos and that after a year he gave his away. In the article he would not even call them Smart Boards but called the useless interactive white boards. He was very passionate about the face that he did not want to own one and that no one else should either.

Mr. Wilson's Post

         In this post, Mr. Wilson discusses the positive side of Smart Boards and the benefits they bring to the classrooms and the the students who get to learn from them and use them. He uses the fact that everything can be enlarged as to help with students who can not see well and also the fact that it is interactive can help the students with disabilities. Also he talks about the massive amount of teacher communication that goes on these website about exchanging new and cutting edge ideas to help improve learning in the classroom.

While I think that all 3 of these men present valid point as to the pros and cons of the Smart Boards, I am still not sure my self where I stand and mostly because I have never used one. I think with every invention and new technique tried there are going to be some problems at first but with time it will be come more clear as to wether or not these Smart Boards are a good idea or not.

Movie Project # 11

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Additional Assignment #2

How Kids Teach Themselves

1. What do you think? If learners are motivated, can they teach themselves?
              Yes, I believe if there is motivation then there is a willingness to learn. If you want to learn then the possibilities are endless as what you can accomplish. There is so much information and so many exciting tools on the internet and in everyday life that we can't help but learn.

2.If those motivated learners are kids, can they teach themselves?
           I would defiantly say yes, because children have a natural curiosity about how things work and why and if you give a child a chance to something they want to do, then motivation is there and they will run with it. If you give a child a chance they can and will always surprise you.

3. What conditions are necessary for kids to teach themselves? For anyone to teach him/herself?
            I believe the children or anyone who wants to learn only needs motivation and the tools required to do so. If you put a group of children together with a computer, the possibilities are endless, as we saw in the video. I believe the same would be true for anyone else as well.

4. What role do computers and internet access play in the process?
           They play a very large role in the process of learning, especially when it is done without a teacher. Student and children have, as I have said, a natural curiosity and they will figure anything out given enough time. The internet and computers just give them a faster way to access the information and open it up for them to find information that may not have been obtainable without the internet.

5. What role does motivation, a desire to learn?
          It plays the biggest role because without motivation there is no need or want found and so no one goes looking for anything such as information or in the case of kids, video games.

6. What roles do a problem, a question, or multiple problems or questions play in the process?
           Questions and problems are like the the enticers for the children's motivation. They will do anything and everything to find the answer and if you get a group of student together then they will race to beat the others.

7. How do you motivate someone to learn?
          You find something they would find interesting, or make a game out of it, or anything that would taylor the learning to that age group and they would consider the topic interesting or intriguing.

8. How are you motivated to learn?
       I am motivated to learn because the more I know, then the more knowledge I have to share and pass on to my students. The more techniques I can find for motivating my students and new ways of teaching the same old hum drum stuff that will excite the students about even the smallest lesson.

9. Can anyone who is not motivated to learn learn?
         I would have to say yes still, because even if you are not motivated or even in school to learn, students can't help but listen to some of what you teach and who knows you may find something that sparks their interest and in turn help them find something they like and thus motivation will find itself.

10. Do you teach yourself? When? Why?
        Yes I teach myself sometimes because I may not have fully grasped what the teacher was saying in the allotted class time or the teacher just may not have made it clear or I could just think they're wrong and want to prove it.

11. What role does a teacher (either answer generally or use a specific example) play in your learning?
       I would have to say that it depends on the teacher and the class. I have some teachers that without them I would fail because that is just how the class is set up like in Math 112 or in some classes I already have to teach myself because that is how that class is set up( blended or hybrid classes) like EDM 310. So this question just depends on the variables.

12. What is the most important idea, question, or emotional response you can take away with you as a result of watching this video?
           I would have to say the most important emotional response I got fro this video was the excitement the children seemed to have in the Italy class as they were learning and answering questions in another language. I hope that the students I have will be just as enthusiastic as those students were.

13. What other questions or issues are raised by this video that should be considered and discussed by aspiring teachers?
          As an aspiring teacher, I would like to know how students in the U.S. would do if faced with the same situations and questions. These studies were all done in other countries. I would like to do this to see if we could maybe figure out how American students would do if asked questions in other languages and see if our school system has a chance to revitalize the love this country once had for learning. We need to stop taking away the curiosity students have and instead nurture it and see where it takes them.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Blog Post # 7

I think this is absolutely amazing and I loved this video. It is so inspiring and I learned so much from this video and so much about how to just enjoy your students and encourage them. Randy Pausch's take on Childhood Dreams is awe inspiring and so moving. He absolutely had me laughing the whole time and everything he said you could relate to. As far as his teaching techniques, I think they are brilliant.

I loved him talking about wanting to be in the NFL but getting more out of it by not being in it than he would have from making it. His Quote, "Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted." This is so true because like Dr. Pausch said, he got more out of trying and practicing than he believed he would have if he tried for the pros. He found out that your critics are the one who ride you because they haven't given up on you. This is a great piece of wisdom to give to our students and to let them know that if we are hard on them it is because we know they can succeed and we have not and will not give up on them.

When he talks about there being brick walls in front us and only the ones who really want it will figure out a way around it. Like Dr. Pausch did when he resined as the space group's faculty leader and became there local journalist so that he could go up in the Zero Gravity flight with his team, because NASA would not allow faculty to go on the flight. this could be used as a great example to show students how they can do anything they want as long as they want it bad enough and are willing to work for it.

Lastly but certainly not the least greatest technique he gave us was when he had started the new course of 50 students who were to create web worlds in groups every two weeks and when they came back for the first project they blew him away. Then he was stuck wondering what to do next and called his mentor Andy and Andy told him to go back and say they "did good" but "they could do better". This was so they would not get complacent but try harder to create even better projects than the last time and see where they could end up. If he had gone back in there and just praised them that would have been the topping point of them trying and why stop when there is always more to learn.

He was one of the best professors I sure and I would have loved to taken his class. I know he touched so many people with this video and everyone in the world should watch it because he was a great man and an even better teacher. Even with everything he had going on there was still so much he was willing to give so that others could recognize their dreams as well. He was an inspiration to aspiring teachers everywhere and all he did was give students an opportunity to follow there dreams and find something they are passionate about and share it with the world.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Project #10 Progress Report

     In my PLN I am using Symbaloo to create my personal learning network. Since I started creating my PLN I have added a ton of blocks and links that I use on a regular basis and some new tools that I have been finding through the EDM class assignments and different types of looking around. This is so easy to use and is a lot of fun, which surprised me but I will defiantly keep this up after I am done with EDM.

C4T #2 Ann Carnevale

During this C4T I had the pleasure of reading and following Ms. Ann Carnevale's Blog. In her the first post of hers I read, "What I Learned on Summer Vacation". In this blog post she tells about her new technological discoveries when it comes to PDF Files and opening new tabs with the touch of one button. She recently discovered how to book mark pages of a PDF Document and gives instructions for you to do as well. She also figured out how to push the apple button and click on a like and it would open in a new tab so you would not lose your place. She also threw in a like to her presentation about ice breakers for classroom teachers to use to get the know the students, help the students get to know each other and to learn the names of everyone.

I think her post is very informative and give lots of neat tricks and tools that are helpful and her presentation is very helpful and cute and I believe it would be very beneficial for teachers to look at and get some ideas for ice breakers.

In her second post that I commented on, she was giving a website that is for free photo fixing program you can download and gave two pictures, a before and after, to demonstrate how it works. The Website is called Webinpaint and you can click here http://www.webinpaint.com/ to download it or just look around. I think this is very helpful and especially for the example she gives like when you take a class photo and hen one child's parent will not give permission for it to be published or put the class website, you can simply use this so that the other students do not have to be left out. I think this is a great tool and everyone should download it. Especially if you have some pictures you like but they need just a little tweaking.

I thoroughly enjoyed Ms. Carnevale's Blog and will be keeping up with her for more great tools and information that are always popping up. If you would also like to follow Ms. Carnevale, just click here http://anncarnevale.edublogs.org/ and see all the great tips and tool she offers.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Time Toast

Comments for Kids # 1 and #2

In my comments for kids I was assigned to comment on Elio's "About Me" and his "Learning Manifesto". From his "About Me", I learned that he has 4 sisters and does not like math. Also his friends call him Elmo and he is Mexican. In his "Learning Manifesto", Elmo talks about what he will do to become a better student. He talks of making sure he listens to the directions so he does his assignments on time and the correct way. Also he will behave better to help him and the teacher have a better relationship and to not disrupt his fellow classmates. He is a very sweet and interesting student.

Blog Post #6

The Networked Student

In this assignment I was asked to watch, The Networked Student by Wendy Drexler. This video boggles my mind to think of all that information out there and it is all available with the click of a mouse. This class is the first class where I have been required to do most of the learning by myself. To do this I have had to make friends with some of the people in my class and we have gotten together to do our work and learn these new applications and learning tools together. It makes it easier when you have people to talk trough ideas with and get feed back. This is just like the student in this video who had to network with other classmates and people around the world to find information and share the information found connectively.
This idea of connectively finding and sharing information is absolutely brilliant. I think this will change the way school as we know it, will run. There are so many different search engines that are now available and ready for us to use as we expand our minds to the technology that is ever growing. These search engines make it so much easier to find specific data we need and Google is now one of my favorite. There is so much information available and all we have to do is reach out and grab it.
Now in this post I was also asked, "Why does a networked student even need a teacher?" Well my answer is that we as students do not know everything and need someone to guide us when we get stuck or are just not getting something. Teachers are there to help us understand and give us all the advantages of their years of experience.I hope to a networked student when I am done with this class and I know that with the help of Dr. Strange and the whole EDM 310 team, I will be.

A 7th Grader's Personal Learning Environment (or PLE)

To be honest I do not see a difference in her PLE and my PLN. I know that I use mine for learning how to use technology and communicate with people and she uses hers for mostly it looked like her science class but we both use them for learning. I wish I would have learned how to use these tool and programs when I was in the 7th grade so that I would have some idea of how to use one for this class but I know no matter what I will use this for the rest of my teaching career and my social life. My PLN make learning and organizing easy and from looking at her PLE I know she will use hers for a long time too.

The Machine is Changing Us

WOW is what comes to mind. This video is amazing and exceptional inspiring. The way he presents YouTube and our generations idea of the meaning of "whatever" is jaw dropping. This video makes me think about how I act and react to the world around me. I can't believe that people see themselves as a spec with no identity but they are somebody and the way television and the media have make young people today believe that they are not important unless they are on either MTV or some silly get rich show like "I Love Money" or "Deal or No Deal" is stomach turning. I do not feel comfortable talking to a camera and would almost never consider post or even making a video of myself because that is just not me. I am too private.
Although in my college life I have come to see how helpful these videos are in teaching and networking with others in the same profession to get new ideas and to continue my learning. This video was a lot to take in, but it was fascinating to me how connected people are on YouTube. I do not get on there a lot but I have seen many of the video he used in his presentation. I guess I am part of the Media generation. The idea of self before the whole however is foreign to me. I was raised to put others feelings and needs before my own. I will admit that I struggled with being selfish but in my heart if someone needs something, I will go without for them. I have never been inconvenienced because somebody needed me or something from me.
As far as this applying to my teaching career, I am not sure how to use this. I know that YouTube is a great apparently social networking site and has tons of information but I just wonder if it is a little too much to handle. I know I could find videos to use in class as visual aids but I'm just not use how else to use it.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Blog Post # 5

In learning about podcasting I saw these videos which helped immensely when it came time to do my own podcast.

Eagle Nest Radio & Classic Blog

These are some exceptional 3rd graders and there podcast are amazing. You can hear them so clearly and they always pause between speakers and introducing each other. I learned a few things from these amazing podcasters. I have never heard of a voice podcast but always thought they were videos but these 3rd graders proved that theory wrong fast. These audio podcasts are done very well and severe as a great example of how to do an audio podcast right.


These are some amazing ideas that teachers have come up with. I would have never thought that you could use podcasting to help children to understand in an english class. Using english vocabulary and putting that vocabulary in to action is a creative way to use a podcast to tell a story and teach language at the same time. These students would create a plot for their podcast and then create a story line. These ways of using podcast excite me about implementing them in my future classroom.

The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom

I think Mr. Dale showed some amazing ideas and on how podcasting could benefit students. His example of the teacher posting the study guide lecture in a podcast on the class website is a great way to help students be able to review and keep up if they are out sick. I did not know that podcast could be so helpful when it came to enacting them in to classroom activities. I know these podcast defiantly would have been a great asset when I was going through school.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Blog Post #4

Don't Teach Your Kids This Stuff. Please? By Scott McLeod

        Scott Mcleod is a leading academic expert on showing students K-12 how to use technology and use it right and only for school and good social activities. He also wants students to excel while using technology and become technology leaders. He believes that technology is more of a good for children to learn and out weighs the bad that comes along with technology such as cyber predators.
        I agree with Dr. McLeod about his views of technology. I believe the good far out way the bad. I know that in this day and age it is so important for students to learn how to use technology because everything that most jobs require you do to now involves technological knowledge of some kind.

The iSchool Initiative 

       I absolutely love Mr. Travis Allen's idea of the iSchool. The concept absolutely mind blowing and I hope that this catches on. This would save so many parents a ton of money and would be great for Title 1 schools. I know that this would revolutionize schools, learning, and communication. Also it would improve studying if the students knew where to look and how to look.
     Also I had no idea that Apple had so many Apps already available and would work so great with iSchool. School would have been so much easier when I was going through if I had these great tools available. I hope that more people see this video and get behind the iSchool Initiative.

The Lost Generation 

     I would like for the whole world to see her video because I believe that this would wake up our generation to do something because it is never too late to start trying to change our future. I did not expect what happened after she got to the end of her speech because I did not like what I was hearing and actually got a little disheartened about what the first part said but the way she rewound it to make you see that we could change what was just said about made me burst with pride. The maker of this video should post this everywhere so that everyone can see this video and maybe even create some more exciting and motivating videos.

Eric Whitacre's Virtual Choir 

      I had no idea that this was even possible. This video was amazing and I think this would be a great use of the internet because you could use this to bring hundreds of people together for so many different causes. You could use this for meetings of all the countries, use it to communicate with whole classrooms or teach classes to students who are half way around the world, or use it as Eric did and bring people together through song. No matter the where you are music transcends all language barriers. I personally believe that music will bring even the most diverse people together because everyone can sing, just some sing better than others but that is why we have a joyful noise section.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Additional Assignment #1

a. Google Squared provides a way for students to gather information about a certain region or country such as finding the population, natural resources, and land mass of any country. This is very useful for students to do in-depth research in almost every subject. It helps with statistics can give you a look in to populations in the time period you are researching.
b. Wolfram Alpha provides students with a different way to find out about the regional and cultural aspects of a country. This search provides you maps and plenty of data about what ever part of the world you would like to look at.
c.No, I did not know about Google Squared before this assignment. I am glad I have found it now and wish I had this back in high school because this would have been an immense help with my research and papers I had to write.
d. No, I did not know about Wolfram Alpha before this assignment but wish I did because I know this would have helped a lot when I was having to do presentations for history class and it would take me hours to find pictures and information about the one place in the world that seemed not to be enough information on.
e. Yes, your comments did absolutely change my mind about the information presented in the video. I did not think about the scales that they were using and forgot I guess that people will present data the way that is most beneficial to their cause. I thought that our country was falling behind and thats China and India were so far a head of us in everything because it kept saying that they had way higher statistics than the U.S. I do believe that the U.S. still needs to step up its educational programs but I do not feel as far behind as I did after the video.
f. I learned form this video that I do not react well to data when it is presented in a way that makes me feel behind, especially when it pertains to my education. I feel a little taken back still that I did not think to look more in depth to the data presented and just believed the context in which it was presented.

Pitcairn Islands map

Food for Thought: I think that technology is becoming more and more easy to use so much so that people with no education can use them with no instruction.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Project #5

C4T #1 Kim Cofino

     During the past two weeks I was assigned to follow and comment on Mrs. Kim Cofino's Blog and in doing so I read many exciting and informing posts that she wrote. One of them was entitled "Beginning With Blogging" which is about her getting her very own class of middle schoolers to teach about technology and blogging. She gave her plan of how and what she was going to teach the students to blog and how to make them their own. The method she uses sounds almost like teaching without letting the students know they are being taught because they are having so much fun learning and personalizing THEIR blog.
     I commented on her post and I said the her lessons sounded fun and very beneficial because the earlier students learn how to use and apply these life tools, then the better and more successful they will become.
      The next post that I read was "We Are All Technology Teachers", which discuses whether or not teachers should and could use technology to help and assist with teaching other subjects besides just a technology class. Also could what they learn in a technology class help them to do and complete their work for other classes. She gives many great ideas and examples to support her post.
     I commented that she is absolutely right when she says that technology is ever changing and apart of the new school. We as teachers need to use technology to help our students and show them how to use technology for things other than just computer class.

Blog Post #3

Michael Wesch: A Vision of Students Today     
      This has been my experience almost to a T. I know that most students come to class and either play on their cell phones or facebook on their laptops but I believe that those are the students who do not have to pay or earn their way in to college because either mommy and daddy pay for it or they are on some kind of scholarship. The students who come to class are the ones going into debt for every class they fail.
     What if though, students were not allowed to bring these things into class and were actually kicked out when the teach caught them using them. I believe there would be a lot less class disruptions. I know technology is great and we need it and use it in a lot of our assignments and homework but until students do what they should with it in- class then maybe some necessary precautions should be taken to ensure that if students do need to use there computer in class then the teachers walk around and check to make sure they are doing their work and require that something be turned in by the end of the class so they can not facebook. The world is technology right now and we need it but we also need to be sure we are using it for what it was made for... bettering our education and sharing with the world what we have discovered.

"It's Not About the Technology" by Kelly Hines
      Teachers everywhere should read this because I believe it would be a serious wake up call. It has never 
been true that the technology makes a better teacher and it is about time the school systems woke up and realized this. Like Ms. Hines says when referring to smart boards, "It is not about the board. It is about proper training and mindset of a teacher who is already willing and eager to do amazing things." It has always been the teachers place to make sure they do not get complacent and to always provide many different learning options because there is no way that even 32 students will all learn the same way.
       I know that teachers can and do teach somewhat better with the assistance of technology but it is the teacher who is teaching and not the technology controlling the teacher like a puppet. I am sorry but if you do not want to do the work then why are you wasting your time getting a degree just so you can sit there and let the smart board do the teaching for  you and you sit and press the clicker?

Karl Fisch: "Is It Okay to Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher?" 
       Yes I do believe that being a technology illiterate teacher now is the same as not being able to read and write back 30 years ago. In this day in age, technology is one of the driving forces in our country and although technology is not everything, it is a part of most of the world everyday life. I do not believe people should be proud either of not knowing how to do something. This does not make anyone look smart or funny but I believe this is merely a copout.
       As teachers we are here to give students the tools and every opportunity that we can so that they can go out in to the world and do great things and succeed. If we ourselves are not the most knowledgeable then what are we doing teaching the future of our country? They deserve to get the best and if we are pleading illiteracy when it comes to technology then we are teaching them to do the same. Imagine a world were we just think it is funny not to know something, I just don't want to. 

Gary Hayes Social Media Count 
        This is absolutely mind boggling. If things like how many people watch youtube and how many people join Facebook can change that fast and almost triple numbers in just 3 seconds, then the knowledge and education I obtain could and probably will be outdated by the time I even get in to a classroom to teach students. 
          Since this is going to be the case then as a technology literate teacher I need to continue staying up to date and current with the information and the technology helps that use to assist in teaching. If I am teaching my students on an outdated program and then they move on and another teacher is using something completely more advanced then I have just hurt my student and held them back for a year. This may be just a count but this is a counter that calls you not to fall behind because if you do the students are the ones who will pay for it.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Blog Post #2

Did You Know? 3.0

       This was an absolutely astounding video. This blew my my and made me feel left behind in the technology world. I could not believe that China and India were so far ahead of us and that even though we are one of the largest nations land wise, we are still not one of the most populated countries. It worries me that we are being out done by other countries and that more war is still in our future.
       Although this is not what I would have like to have heard, I am glad to know and hope that more Americans see this video and want to change this with me. The U.S. use to be one of the leading nations and now I come to find out that we are # 19 in how much internet and technology we have nation wide. This makes me as a student of South Alabama wonder what schools could do more to keep their students as current as possible to teach the future of this country the most current and up to date information.

Mr. Winkle Wake 

        This was a very interesting video. I did not get the point of it at first and was ready to just lay into this Mathew Needleman, but as the video went on it began to make sense and I completely agree with Mr. Needleman.

     I do not know how teachers and principals can send students out in to the world and expect them to do well in a job or excel at college, if they do not give them the tools they need to succeed. I know from personal experience that I would have done a lot better in college if I had been offered the computer and technology classes that now keep me up at night trying to figure out. I had one computer class in high school and it was nothing like what I needed to learn to be a college student. These are life skills and to deny them to us is wrong and setting us up for failure.

The Importance of Creativity

     I loved this video and could not have said what he said any better. The arts are important and the way our education system is set up now, we will continue to fall behind as a nation if we do not give our kids the opportunity to flourish and and express themselves. I know that there have been so many talented people who over the years have been mocked and told they would fail if they did not do what they were told, and give up on their foolish fantasies of being a dancer, a painter, or a musician. These are the people who design our buildings, our bridges, and everything that brings us joy and culture.
     If we do not give young minds a chance to find their way, then all we have done is created a bunch of mindless robots who all know the same things and have no individuality. Creativity is the reason students do not just walk out of schools and give up. If the teachers and school faculty would give students who are artistic a chance to express themselves instead of just sending home notes they were bad or have ADHA, then maybe we could recognize these talents early on and give them what they need to be successful and not tear them down for not fitting in to the mold society has deemed normal and acceptable.

Harness Your Students Digital Smarts

     I think what Vicki Davis is doing with these kids is amazing. These are life skills and what she is teaching them now will in this day and age, help them for the rest of their lives. We are living in a technology based world and this not only teaching them how to use all different kinds of software and websites but  this program is also giving a different way to learn. I think we are so set in the old ways of teaching that it is setting our students back and our generation. These classes also are giving a different way for students to learn and excel.
     It is sad that most schools only offer students one pathway of learning. It would benefit students, the business of the world, and our generation if students were allowed to have different ways of learning than sitting in a classroom and being lectured all day. It gives them a creative outlet and could possibly give us the people we need to make this world a better place for all of us.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

About Brittany

Hi, my name is Brittany McGowan and I am originally from Birmingham, Alabama. I am an Elementary Education major and my passions are teaching, being a good friend and Christian, and Alabama Football. I am attending the University of South Alabama because my fiance is in the Jaguar Marching Band and I have heard really great things about the educational program down here.
I am the oldest of three girls in my family and that would total 4 women in one house. I also have a puppy named, Angel, and she is my pride and joy. She and my sisters dog, Bear, and my other sister's cat, Jack,who thinks he is a dog, all live in Birmingham with my mom ,but I visit all the time. I love animals and plan to have a farm someday.
I have since I was little loved to help my sisters and friends with homework and even use to play school when I was about four or five. I am a very passionate person and when I find something that bothers me I will do everything in my power to change it or find the people who can. I was inspired early on with my love of school because of the wonderful and encouraging elementary teachers that I had. I know that if children do not like school in the first few years then they are more likely to either not perform well or even drop out. This outrages me and I want to show every child the joy of learning and inspire them as I was inspired.
The most important thing to know about me is that I am a Christian and that God has blessed me with the most wonderful fiance in the world, Shaffer, and we are getting married on June 2, 2012. He is my reason for everything that I do and is my best friend. Also I love my friends: Ashley, Jacob, and Matt, and spend as much time as possible with them and Shaffer. My life is surrounded by the ones I love. Also as crimson tide fans all over the world say, "Roll Tide".