Thursday, September 27, 2012

Blog Assignment #5



After watching the videos, "The iSchool Initiative" and "ZeitgeistYoungMind's Entry", Travis Allen makes some really great points. Drastic funding costs have forced school systems to let go of teachers and buy less learning materials. Schools are forced to get by with the bare necessities. There are not enough teachers, computers, or textbooks in our school systems. The larger classroom size makes it difficult for teachers to give personal help and attention to students. We have to do better. Travis has a brilliant plan. Travis wants all schools to invest in the iSchool. The iSchool would allow all students, teachers, and parents to have a classroom at their fingertips. All textbooks, notes, maps, calendars, calculators, and such could be downloaded to apple’s itouch to create the iSchool. The iSchool could drastically change accountability between teacher and students, and students and their parents. Homework assignments could be uploaded to the itouch, and grades could be accessed at the touch of a button. This type of technology would transform the education system to the mobile world in which we live. If you add up the cost of textbooks, calculators, and copy paper, the cost of the itouch would not compare. Where schools normally spend $600 per student, the itouch would only cost around $150.

Although I think the theory behind the iSchool is amazing, I wonder how simple it would be to implement. Most students know more about technology than teachers. I know for a fact that some of the teachers that I have been around could never teach using an iPod. There would have to be mandatory training for school systems to implement this type of change. Most schools that I have been involved with could never afford the money it would take to implement this radical change all at one time. Many schools would be forced to transform to the mobile world one classroom at a time. I think that this plan would be incredible if it’s implemented correctly. I know I would love to teach at a school that had this type of technology!

Virtual Choir

Eric Whitacre’s Virtual Choir
After watching, "Eric Whitacre’s Virtual Choir" , I have one word to say about the video, Amazing! What an experience for those students. The resource that we have in the internet is extraordinary. Why would we not use this technology to make our students more successful? If a group of 185 people can sing Lux Aurumque on the internet without ever meeting, we can do almost anything.

Teaching in the 21st Century

Teaching in the 21st Century
What does it mean to teach in the 21st century? We live in the information era. "Kevin Robert’s presentation" on teaching in the 21st century describes how teachers must change if they expect to have successful students. Students have information at their fingertips, and as Roberts describes in his video, educators must use these resources to as a way of reaching their students. We have so many resources at our disposal that could help our students be engaged and entertained all at the same time. The days are gone when teachers can pull out a text book and tell students to define vocabulary words. We have to engage and challenge our students in learning. We can no longer be just a teacher, we must be a facilitator. We must be the filter for all the information they have access to. We must recreate our education system to focus on skills rather than facts. I do believe Roberts is correct in his analogy. The digital world is constantly changing, and education must adapt to this change if we expect our students to succeed. My students will be the only ones losing if I do not take the risk of being a 21st century teacher "one activity, one unit, and one class at a time".

Flipped Classroom

Flipped Classroom

After watching the videos, "Why I Flipped My Classroom" , "Flipped Classroom – FAQ" , "Dr. Lodge McCammon's FIZZ - Flipping the Classroom" , and "Flipping the Classroom - 4th Grade STEM" , I think flipping the classroom is an excellent theory, however I think applying the concept would be difficult because of the time it would take for teachers to properly implement the program. Most teachers already have full schedules, and I think adding video lectures would only add to the long list of ways teachers are burned out. School districts would have to spend thousands of dollars training teachers, students, and parents. There are many benefits to this type of instruction. Parents would have access to the information necessary to help their children with homework and projects, but they would also have to be trained to properly use this type of educational technology.

My dream is to teach at the high school where I graduated. We live in a small community with less than 600 students attending our school. I would guess that less than half of those students have internet access. This would be a problem if I was to “flip my classroom.” In one of the videos it talked about what teachers do for students that do not have computer access. Those students normally are able to watch the video when they get to school, but isn’t that basically defeating the purpose?

My Sentence Video

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Project #5 Presentation

Blog Assignment #4


Podcast Headphones
I have never had much experience with a podcast, but after reading some of the success stories, "1st Graders Create Their Own Read-Along Audiobook" and "Langwitches - Flat Stanley Podcast", I know I will defiantly use this technology in my classroom. As teachers, we should use any resource available to reach our students. Most of the blogs that I read were geared towards elementary age students where adults played a major role in the creation of these blogs. I am currently earning a degree in secondary education, and although I know that teenagers would respond well to this type of technology, I worry about the security. I know teenagers that journal all the time. A podcast would be a very interesting journal for an English class, and I could use the podcast in my classroom to record progress in health and exercise. I believe that using the same concept that is being used by elementary grade students to record stories on a podcast can be used in the high school atmosphere. “It is not the technology being taught. It is the skill being taught.”

C4T #1 Summary

C4T Assignment

My assigned teacher's name is "Ira David Socol".

C4T Post #1

The idea that education should be centered on four thought is both positive and negative. The idea that a school should have “one ethos” is extraordinary. As a future teacher, I hope that I can create an environment that my students will embrace. I have found that the majority of students do not come to school to learn new material. Learning falls short to sports, extra-curricular activities, and friends. I hope when I have the opportunity to teach in my own classroom that I can help my students duplicate the qualities that they learn in these “other” activities to the material I must teach in my classroom. However, I believe that the idea that education should have an “open culture” is a little more complex. All the testing that education requires today only hinders the process of education. We are so busy preparing for the test that we forget to teach students things like teamwork, honesty, and integrity. We focus to much time and thought into making sure that we have a “common core”, that we forget to focus on the fact that no student is the same. All students learn in different ways at a different pace. The idea that education should have “many paths” is so relevant right now. Every high school graduate is not going to go to college. In my high school graduating class there where about 20% of us that went to college. Everyone else learned a trade and went to work. If we want our students to succeed we need to accept the fact that they are not all the same, and furthermore will not have the same future plans. Last and maybe most important is the thought that education should have “many tools”. Students today know more about the technology in a classroom than the teachers. If we want our student to succeed in this world we must emerge ourselves in the tools that are available. Overall, the idea that education should have “one ethos, open culture, many paths, and many tools” is something every educator should take to heart.

C4T Post #2

What does your school look like? I have never really thought about that question. In Ira Socols newest blog, she communicates just that. There are two questions we should ask ourselves about our schools. First, what is the point of your school? Of course the right answer to that question sounds very simple. We want to educate our students in such a way that we will give them the most success. However, carrying out the answer is not quite as simple. What do we teach them? How? When? Who? Where is the line drawn? Is there even a line anymore? Mrs. Socols describes how when schools were built, they generally looked like and were run like the world around them. Maybe that is where the problem lies. I know for a fact that the high school I attended looks nothing like the rest of the world. The second question Mrs. Socols asks is what is the user experience of your students? In my short experience with education, I have come to agree with this question. Students respond to everything, both the good and the bad. Maybe if we thought more about our students and less about how traditional it is, then we could compete with education systems around the world.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Blog Assignment # 3

Peer Editing

Peer Editing

Peer editing is something that students do not do very much of in the world today. Peer editing can be a very useful tool. When you first think about peer editing, you think that it is a bad thing. It is not a bad thing if it is done the correct and “positive” way! After viewing "Paige’s blog assignment",watching the videos,"What is Peer Editing?" and "Writing Peer Review Top 10 Mistakes", and viewing the slides, "Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial", peer editing is broken down into three simple instructions.

These instructions include: Complimenting, Suggesting, and Correcting. First, there is complimenting. When peer editing, you should always start out by complimenting the other person’s work. Second, there is suggesting. This means to provide the person that you are peer editing with useful ideas and information. Finally, there is correcting. This is the instruction that some people have a hard time doing, because we do not want to hurt others’ feelings. By correcting other people’s work, we simply, in a positive way, tell the person their mistakes. It is as simple as that. The key to peer editing is to always “stay positive”!

Technology in Special Education

Technology in Special Education

After watching the video, "Technology in Special Education", Lacy Cook is obviously is an excellent teacher. In her video she demonstrates not only how technology has changed the way she teaches, but it also shows how much her students have gained. We live in a world where students’ lives are centered on technology! As teachers why would we not use that to our advantage? I can remember when I was in high school most special needs students really did nothing. They helped the janitor clean classrooms. Today this has all changed. Computers have allowed for us to see really just how much special need students can actually learn.

Using technology to help special needs students is a no brainer. I do not think there are really words to truly show the impact that technology has made on these very special students. Special needs students are very special to my heart. A very special little boy named Hayden actually first inspired me to be a teacher. I have first hand seen how technology has changed his life. He can now do things even his parents never thought he would be able to do. He always has the biggest smile because he knows his computer helps him.

My sister teaches at a high school in Mississippi. She has a classroom full of computers. She teaches four inclusion classes, and many of her special need students do better work with the new technology than the regular education students. All schools should make sure that all the equipment necessary is available to give special need students every opportunity to succeed.

Apple Education App

Apple Logo

After watching the video, "How the iPad Works with Academics for Autism", and exploring the website, "Apple in Education", I found the “I speak word” app to be very interesting. This app is designed to help a student learn the sound of a letter. I think that this app would be very beneficial to special need student who needs help with speech. This app not only will help a student speech, but it does so in a way that will motivate the student to want to learn more. After all our job as teachers is to motivate students to learn more than they already know.

Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts

Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts
After watching the video, "Harness Your Students’ Digital Smarts" by Vicki Davis, I think it is incredible that Vicki Davis uses this much technology in her classroom. Allowing her students to develop avatars, wiki’s, and communicate with students not only in the US, but all around the world is extraordinary. Even though she teaches in a very small school she uses any resource she can to help reach her students. Her students are using technology that I am just now learning about. It is wonderful to see students so interested in education.

I think it is a shame that the trend in education is leaning away from this type of education. Our entire world is centered on technology. Students literally have access to the types of technology Mrs. Davis uses at their finger types. I hope that when I start teaching in my classroom that I can motivate my students as much as this class has motivated Mrs. Davis’s students. Instead of trying to teach a “common core” maybe we should let the students show us their creativity and uniqueness by allowing all students to work in an environment like Mrs. Davis’s classroom.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Blog Assignment #2

"Did you know? 3.0"

In this video, "Did You Know? 3.0" by John Strange, Dr. Strange presents many statistics that show how technology is booming in our society today. The statistic that “25% of the population of India with the highest IQs outnumbers the entire population of the United States” is astonishing. This statement made me think about how large is India and why they have IQs higher that the entire United States? In my opinion, this shows how advanced technology is and continues to be.

As the video went on, there were statistics about cell phones and computer. The statements were about percentages of groups of people who made a cell phone and computer. In our society today, there are not very many people who do not have a computer or cell phone. Students, in society today, are becoming more advanced with the use of technology at early ages. Technology is a great tool, and it is a very useful tool in the classroom.

"Mr. Winkle Wakes" by Matthew Needleman

In Matthew Needleman video, Mr. Winkle Wakes by Mathew Needleman, he describes and explains ways that technology has been created and evolved over time. The character in the video is a cartoon of an old man called Mr. Winkle. He awakens from a one-hundred year nap to realize how technologically advanced the world had become. The video was presented in a very simple way. It seems that it was presented this way for children to understand the points.

I agree with the author that new technologies have changed the way we do many things. From my own personal experiences with technology, it has been very beneficial to me and to my education. In schools today, we see I Pads being used plus other new technological advancements. In years to come, I believe technology will be even more advanced than it is now.

"The Importance of Creativity" by Sir Ken Robinson

In Robinson's video, The Importance of Creativity by Sir Ken Robinson, he uses a dry sense of humor to persuade how important a child’s creativity is. He says that by telling children that they are making mistakes, we are keeping them from expanding their creative ability. He about how educators need to prepare students for the future. Robinson inform us that all the education in the world does not guarantee a person a job, so no matter how much a person succeeds academically, a student's creativity ability could have a better success rate in finding a job. We, as educators, should to educate our students about the “world” and help encourage them to find themselves and prepared for what is out there.

I agree with Sir Ken Robinson, public schools focus more on preparing students for standardized test and various test taking strategies. Students become bored with school and some even start to misbehave. However, if school systems emphasized on integrating arts into the curriculum students would not only learn more but will be more focused. I agree with Robinson that art needs and should be incorporated in our schools. Art may be what drives some students’ futures.

Think about the Future!

After watching the videos about glass, A Day Made of Glass 2: Same Day. Expanded Corning Vision, A Day Made of Glass 2: Unpacked. The Story Behind Corning's Vision, Project Glass: Live Demo at Google by Dan Butterfield, I was astonished by the presentation of this technology. It was some really awesome videos. The videos were about future technologies being had with the use of glass. It is somewhat the same concept as the I Pads, etc. This technology would be awesome to have in a classroom. In one of the videos, it showed them using the glass technology in the classroom. The thing I really like about it is that it was hands on.

Another technological advancement would be the solar panels on top of the school. The ultimate, astonishing thing was the use of glass in the medical field. The precise images that they could capture and be able to dissect the images in any way they want or need too. I think that glass could be a huge improvement for the medical field and diagnosing medical problems.

Past, Present, Future