Saturday, September 25, 2010

Blog Assignment 5

While watching and listening to a few of the podcasts, I took note of a few things that I think would make our podcast more exciting, informatory and interesting.

roman manI started out watching the Eagle’s Nest video of Roman architecture and roman life. In the podcast, the students gave the listener information on arches, ampitheaters, gladiators, and other popular structures like the Coliseums and Adrian’s Wall. One thing I really enjoyed about this podcast was the fact that the students had background music playing. In my opinion, this is something that will keep the listeners attention and make things more interesting. Also, I think it was a good idea that all of the students involved were introduced so I knew who they were. Their podcast was simple, informative, and to the point.

I enjoyed the first podcast so much that I went and watched another one of theirs that as on explorers and their travels. This podcast also had background music. The children role played and acted like they were the actual explorers. To me, this is a great way to allow students to learn and have fun at the same time. This also allows the children to tell a story of what each explorer did.

The third podcast/video I watched was on the benefits of podcasts in the classroom. After listening, I realized that letting children podcast on their own gives them a chance to come up with their own ideas and be creative. To me, this is very important Children need to be able to have fun, yet still be learning important information. Another good thing about having children podcast is so their parents can see and hear what they are doing in class. I learned that while doing a podcast, you need to look presentable, and talk in a slow manner so you can be understood. I really liked that each sentence was spaced out and spoken in a good, enthusiastic tone. Now I know what kinds of things to keep in mind while I do my final podcast.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Blog Assignment 4

Don’t teach your kids this stuff, please?

I loved reading Mr. McLeod’s blog post. At first, I was sort of confused. I was thinking to myself, “WHY would he tell parents not to let their kids log online for learning purposes?” Then I figured out that it was more of a sarcastic approach. What is so funny, though, is that now days, there are so many parents that really have that view on computers and cell phones and all other types of technology. I actually think it is sad because parents and teachers like that are making their children miss out on important educational opportunities that can only be found online.

Obviously, there are things online that parents should be alert about. Yes, there is cyber bullying, porn, junk, and predators, but I do not think that it is fair to disregard all forms of technology just because of this. All children should be allowed to stay up to date with the technological advances, even if it means access to the internet. I could not imagine where I would be if I did not use the computer or the cell phone. I would not know hoe to type, how to do power points, how to use search engines, or how to do pretty much ANYTHING! Yes, I think parents should be cautious when it comes to their children and the things they do on the internet, but at the same time I feel like there is so much to be seen and learned.
I think that in the years to come, children in Mr. McLeod’s class will most definitely have the upper hand over children with no technological background.
Who do I see Dr. McLeod as? He is a professor who teaches other students and teachers about technology.

The iSchool Initiative

I think that this high school student may be onto something with this whole iSchool idea. To me, it seems like a convenient way to keep up with homework, schedules, classes, important tools, notes, and class work. To me, having everything in one place would make things a lot more organized and a little easier to deal with. I think that this COULD work… if enough people can join in and support it.

On the other hand, I see how it could be a little controversial. To me, having a personal face to face relationship with somebody is very important, especially if they are your teachers. I know I would not like to have my complete time of schooling done over a gadget. I think I would rather know I could go talk to my teacher instead of just emailing/twittering them. I’m not sure if I completely understand how this works. It’s definitely something I will look further into, though. In my opinion, any thing that can make school less expensive and more convenient should be given a lot of thought.

The Lost Generation

This video was very creative and a bit mind blowing. I agree, though. Our generation is in control of things for the future, and if we do not do something to keep it that way, we may become a lost generation.
I know that in the future, I hope I have my priorities set straight. I know that I will not see money or work as number one; I will see my family and my kids as the most important things in my life, and I know I do not want environmental destruction to be a normal part of life.

To me, it is really amazing how just changing the way you say or look at things can completely change the meaning of them. I agree, for future generations, and for our generation, there is hope. If we can shift things around and do things a little differently, we can save our world and save ourselves.

Eric Whitacre’s Virtual Choir

Ok, the first thing I did was close my eyes and listen to them sing. It gives me chills that something so amazing can be put together through the internet and you tube. I agree with Jennifer, at first glance, it would seem like just any other choir performance, but when you think about the fact that none of them have ever met, it makes it that much more amazing.

In my opinion, this is just another thing done to show us how far technology has come. In the past, this would NEVER have been able to happen. It was a completely brilliant idea and it all turned out so beautifully. I think that if things like this are possible now, I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for us.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Blog Assignment 3

A Vision of Students Today- Michael Wesch

When I watched this video, it hit me pretty hard. I know what sounds sort of crazy, but being a college student on a budget, I know exactly what those students were going through. When I first started watching the video, I honestly didn’t think it would be as true as it was. I, like many students, I’m sure, feel like I’m cramming 30 or more hour days into 24 hours. With school, and a job, and homework everyday, I feel like I have to be a "multi-tasker" just to make it through the day.
stressed out student
However, I know that staying online on Facebook and watching a lot of TV and listening to music (which are all things that were mentioned on the video) are personal choices. If they make it harder for kids to handle their school work, to an extent, it is the students own fault. I don’t, by any means, think that a person should do nothing but school work and internet work and read books all the time, but I do think that if its affecting someone that negatively and making things so miserable, people should make alternate choices which could make their schedules easier for them. I know I have had to make choices like this to make sure I’m successful in school.

I feel that a lot of things we learn about in school now days are NOT necessarily important for the future. I too, like some of the people said on the video, have spent hundreds and hundreds of dollars on text books that I may have only looked at once or twice, if that much. I, also, have had many classes that have well over 100 students. In these sorts of classes, teachers never get to know their students. I believe the whole "18% of my teachers don’t know my name" part of the video. I know one semester I had only 1 class where a teacher actually knew who I was. I know some people don't think too much about stuff like that, but I believe it’s always easier when you have a more one-on-one connection with your teacher.

All together though, I think this video pretty much sums up how my education has been so far. I know that it may not be like this for all people, but for me, it has been. I know I’m facing most of the problems that were stated in the video. Whether it is lack of sleep, going in debt, buying un-needed books, or having HUGE classes with no teacher-student time, I feel like I have been there!

It's Not About the Technology by Kelly Hines

I agree with Kelly completely on this argument. Although technology can be a really useful tool for children, it is NOT the most important, and students can get a quality education without the most up to date technology. Like Ms. Hines said, if you have a teacher who misuses the technology, it really serves no purpose at all to the students. It definitely won’t give them a better education this way.

Things do need to be changed in the classroom, and I agree that it is up to the teachers and their teaching methods to do this, not technology alone. In my opinion, it all boils down to the creativity of the teachers. I believe that all teachers should begin to pay more attention to her his/her students individually. Like Kelly said in the post, teachers can teach all they want, but if they are not passing on the information to their students, they are achieving nothing at all. Teachers should keep an open mind in their teaching, and they should be able to change their methods to be able to get all of their students to understand.

Technology alone will not be able to teach the students. I believe that technology is helpful. But I also believe that it will take well educated, open minded teachers to pass on information to ALL students in the classroom, whether it is being taught with the most up to date technology, or whether it is being taught with a book and a chalkboard.

Is It Ok to Be a Technology Illiterate Teacher?

While reading the comments after the post itself, I caught myself reading and re-reading one comment in particular. This comment stated “What is does technologically “illiterate” actually mean. I think for me to completely understand this whole blog, this is something that needs to be cleared up first. Does it mean someone who has NO idea how to turn on a computer; someone who has NO idea how to work one? Or does it mean a teacher that does not know how to use all the latest and up to date technology, like twitter and Skype?

To an extent, I completely agree with what Mr. Fisch is saying in this post. I don’t think that all teachers necessarily have to be technological geniuses, but I do think that ALL teachers need to have a little bit of background in the field of technology. I think it may be a little harsh to say that teachers who are technologically illiterate need to find new careers. I think this depends on whether or not a teacher is WILLING to learn the new technology. Yes, I do agree that if a teacher says, “I don’t know how to use a computer, and I don’t want to learn,” they should not be allowed to teach, especially not now days where everything is surrounded by computers and upgraded technology. But I believe if a person is willing to learn, that may be a different story. I think that if the students are being praised to learn the new advances in technology, so should teachers who have never gotten the chance.

As I have said before, the world is becoming more and more technologically advanced every day. It may not be something we notice now, but looking back in 5 or 10 years, I think we are all going to be like, “Twitter, man that’s so old. We have _______ NOW!” I think that this will go on year after year and technology will always be changing. So I agree, yes, that having a teacher who has no idea how to work the technology of today will NOT know how to work the technology of tomorrow. With the world becoming more advanced each day, someone with no background in technology will not make it, especially if a teacher has no idea how to do what he/she is trying to teach his/her students to do. Because of this, I believe all teachers, to an extent, should be technologically literate.

idea manGary Hayes- Social Media Count

WOW! This is absolutely amazing to watch. I honestly sat here for almost seven minutes just watching the numbers go higher and higher. I am really starting to realize that each day, each SECOND to be exact, more is going on with technology. Who would have thought that in almost 200 seconds, almost 2 MILLION videos would be watched on YouTube? What’s funny, though, is that 20 years ago, most people didn’t know anything about YouTube. Most people didn’t know any thing about computers to say the least. Most people did not even HAVE computers. Technology really has come a long way! It’s also amazing that each second there are a few new internet users around the world.

I’m not really sure how this will affect me as a teacher; hopefully, it won’t affect me in any negative way. I figure that keeping up with the technological advances will be enough for me to have a successful career as a teacher. As many people say, “Teachers are not only teachers, they are learners as well.” As long as I continue to learn as much as I can (and keep an open mind about the technological upgrades), I think that I will be as effective at teaching as I possibly can. I know that technology is changing, and I think that all teachers are going to have to change and advance as well or else the technologically literate students will have to be ‘teaching’ us teachers instead!

My Wordle

A Wordle based on a short paragraph about Christie Odom.

Comments for Teachers 1

class rulesFor the first comment for teachers assignment, I read Jenny She's blog. I completely agree with the post I read. I believe that all children have so much information to pass onto us. Like she said, we grew up in completely different times than some of our students, and we should be open to learn from them since we have the chance. I agree that some teachers think they know it all, but I know this is not the case (and i will choose NOT to be one of those teachers). Mrs. She presented a video in which a little girl was giving a lecture on the word "childish" and how it should not be used to desribe a certain level of immaturity (which can, a lot of times, be found in adults and not children). I found this blog post very informative and thought provoking. Hopefully, all teachers will one day realize there are many things to learn from students.

The second post I read on Jenny She's blog was on task boards. Task boards, as Mrs. She puts it, are boards with student's names and lists of activities for them to do until they get a chance to be called up to the teacher. This way, they are kept busy with learning activities. I think that task boards would be beneficial not only to younger children, but to older students as well. Like Mrs. She says, children have different skills and abilities, and some learn on different levels than others. Also, I agree that some students (especially younger ones) have a harder time concentrating and staying on track. I also think that her choice in having flexible choosing options was a great idea. This way, a few student's can do one activity at a time, and they get a chance to choose their own activity.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Blog Assignment 2

Ken Robinson: The Importance of Creativity

I completely loved hearing this presentation from Mr. Robinson. I think that for some children, the ability to show their creative side is so important. As he says it, "It is as important as literacy." I liked hearing about the little girl who never payed attention, but once it came to drawing, she did. This just goes to show you that so many people have different creative talents and while in school, each should be let out and explored.

I do not think that a child should ever be given a coloring book instead of a blank page. I believe that as long as that is happening, children are being limited in their talent. "CHILDREN DO NOT GROW INTO CREATIVITY, THEY GROW OUT OF IT" When Mr. Robinson said this, it really made sense to me. It is true that over time, people are forced out of their creative zones. I believe people, children especially, should be taught with more emphasis on creativity, art, and music.

"Harness Your Student's Digital Smarts"- Vicki Davis

I think that the way Ms. Davis and her classroom are set up is absolutely amazing. Just being able to interact with people from all over the world can be so helpful to students. Not only by learning about the different customs and traditions, but also by learning the history of different countries and people. For most classrooms, this technology is not available, and I think that any classroom would be so fortunate to have this chance. I love how the different students get to share and interact.I believe that this is so beneficial for students of all ages!

I believe that over the years technology is going to continue to change. I know that teachers like her, who incorporate this technology into learning experiences, will have great educational success in the future with their classrooms. As technology changes, so should the ways of teaching. I think that a great job has been done in Ms. Davis' classroom, and I hope that as the years go on, more teachers will incorporate technology into their educational schedules like she has!

Did You Know?
"So what does it all mean?"

That is the question that was asked at the end of the video. To be honest, I have NO idea what it means for people all over the world. To an extent, I am not surprised at all. It is VERY obvious to everybody that the world is becoming more technology advanced. What did surprise me was the fact that other places, like Bermuda, are more advanced than we are. That is something that I don't think ever would have crossed my mind before watching the video. Here we are, people in the United States, thinking that WE have all the new updated technology, when in reality we are not even close to other countries in their advancement.

Something else that really caught my eye was the fact that so many text messages have been sent in such a short period of time. I guess it is just something I never thought about, especially since it only started in 1992? Man, how the world has changed. To me its actually kind of scary. I'm left thinking OK, they are going to make a smart computer (one that is better than the human species?) really? Whats next should be the real question!

Mr. Winkle Wakes

To me, this video gave me a lot of insight as to how things used to be done in schools. Although I never got to experience teaching like that, I know that so much has evolved and so much has changed. Schools and hospitals and other places have been the way they are now as long as I can remember. I can't exactly imagine what it would feel like to wake up and see things the way Mr. Winkle did. I have never known a world without technology, but I can only think of how different methods for teaching were back then, without the smart boards and the internet.

100 years ago, schools were primarily teaching reading, writing, and arithmetic, but now I feel that there is so much more to be learned. I feel that without some of the technology we have now, students would have less methods for learning and they would not get to experience half the things we are not. I'm not saying that the basics are not important, but I do believe that teachers should advance in technology as the world does. Keeping our students up to date, while still keeping focus on the basics, will be the best way to educate them, in my opinion.