Friday, August 17, 2012

Tool 11

1.  It's overwhelming to think back about all of the things I've learned from this experience.  There are several things I want to try in my classroom this year!  I definitely think I will use Edmodo and Poll Everywhere.  I fully intend to use Blogger to create (I mean, maintain - I've had one before and did not keep up with it well) a class blog.  I plan to use the ipads this year in workshop and will have students respond to their learning to hold them accountable.
2.  I am excited about trying out the things I have learned!  I have a better understanding of what I can use my devices to do - and how to get that accomplished.  I am going to need to make a point of teaching digital citizenship and the proper use of the devices.  I want students to feel empowered to direct their learning using the technology.  It will help me as a teacher step back, and let the students lead more, as we more forward.  It helps create that self-determined learner.
3.  I am surprised at how easy a lot of this was.  I think I was a little intimidated before and it simply took me sitting down and exploring a little to figure out a few really valuable things that I can use in my classroom.

Tool 10

1.  I want to make sure students understand that they can't believe everything they read.  Just because it is online, it does not make it true.  It is important that they can validate sources as they gather information.
2.  I want students to understand why it is important to protect their identity online as they form relationships.  They need to protect their personal information.  They need to inform an adult if there is anything they see that upsets them.
3.  I want students to understand that their online responses are public and that they should be kind and respectful, as they would be in person.
I think watching a video on digital citizenship, such as through BrainPop, would be beneficial to students.  Kids love Moby!  I think it would take an initial lesson and ongoing lessons throughout the year to learn proper "netiquette."  I would make parents aware of the SBISD Acceptable Use Policy as well as post something on my blog.

Tool 9

I think it is important to tie technology to the objective so students have a clear understanding of what is expected of them.  I want my student's time in the classroom to be meaningful, therefore if I ask them to use technology as a workstation they need to understand why and what they are learning/practicing.  If students are held accountable there is less time for goofing off!  I think Mangahigh would be great to use, as it's a gaming environment and it competitive.  Students would be driven to participate and since they receive badges for completion of assigned work it is easy to hold students accountable. I also liked the Learning Games for kids site and I think kids would, too.  I could have students write an open ended reflection after their time on the site.  Alien Kids Math HD and the BrainPop apps are both things I would like to use in my classroom.  They could use both during workshop time and write about what they learned/practiced, possibly using some type of feedback form, when they finished.  I found the itouch useful to use with a new ESL student last year to practice learning English.  Equipped with headphones, she could hear the letter sounds and practice putting them together to make words, complete with pictures to learn new vocabulary.

Tool 8

1.  I learned that if I put things in itunes on my teacher laptop that I can sync the other devices in my classroom so that they will have the same materials.  I also learned that I could use cloud-based storage, which may be more practical, to keep content.
2.  I intend to use the devices in small groups and/or as workstations.  I need to teach proper use and guidelines to ensure they are being used in an appropriate manner and are being taken care of.  A colleague has already created a document listing our tech "rules" and I will use that as a guide.  I will hold students accountable for use and will probably find "experts," or students who can help troubleshoot problems if I am working with other students.

Tool 7

A.  Content Objective:  TLW develop an understanding and appreciation for another culture by working collaboratively with a classroom in another country using technology.
B.  I would try to implement this during the China unit in first grade.
C.  I would use Skype and perhaps Poll Everywhere and/or Blogger
D.  It would be amazing to connect to a classroom in China (If we could tackle the language barrier) to Skype with another class.  Students could share items and first graders can see first hand a typical Chinese student's lunch, classroom, their flag, etc.  They could ask each other questions using Poll Everywhere and we could blog about our experience.  The students could stay in touch that way.
E.  I have no idea how I would find a classroom in China to participate, but with current technology it seems that just about anything is possible!

Tool 6

I would like to use Edmodo with my students this year.  I had created an account at a professional development a while back, but have never used it.  I think third grade used it last year to promote student participation and I want to join in on the fun!  It's a little bit like Facebook for school.

I also want to use Poll Everywhere.  What a quick and easy way to get student feedback!  Here is a link to my first poll:

Monday, August 13, 2012

Tool 5

Wordle is fun, quick and easy for the students and I to use.  I could use it as a set for a lesson, but it would be an even better product for kids to create on their own.  It could help them determine importance of a subject.  Here is an example:

Water Cycle Wordle

The trading card on Big Huge Labs is a great way for kids to use technology to demonstrate understanding of a concept or topic.  Students could use it to show what they know about a planet, famous person, etc.and it's fun!  Here is an example that kids could create:

Tool 4

I think Google Docs is a fabulous tool to use with my teammates - especially for planning!  Since we have such limited time to get everything done it would be useful if you started to create something and were not able to finish.  It would allow you to continue to work on the document and make edits individually, but both review it.  I'm not sure how I would use it in the classroom.  I do like that it doesn't matter where kids save items; "cloud" computing allows you to access things from anywhere.  It could be great for older student writers, as they could help each other edit pieces of writing.  However, I think the students would need to be much older and very responsible.  There is a lot of potential with Google Apps!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tool 3

I find Discovery Education to be most useful.  I have used it in both my first and third grade classrooms.  There is content on there for just about any subject and the students really seem to enjoy watching the videos.  You Tube is also handy for finding songs when you need them, but you have to be more careful about what comes up on the screen when searching for things.  It's best to do any searching while the Activboard is not on!

I thought I would explore You Tube a little more... This video is slightly annoying, but something tells me the kids would love it!  Third graders take timed fact quizzes, so this may help a couple of kids with the 9's.  Could be used in math workshop for students to check out as needed.

Copyright law is something that I should be more aware of (as should the children.)  I learned that older materials are likely fair game to use and that I can use small parts of newer materials without too much concern.

Dropbox would be really helpful in instances when the SBISD server was not available.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Tool 2

I think participating in an online community and participating in a PLN is very worthwhile.  It is something that I don't often take the time to do and I enjoyed reading about other people's teaching adventures.  I agree that asking questions and being open ended encourages reader response.  I noticed that wasn't usually the case, though, that people wrote about what was happening in their world, but did not necessarily encourage feedback.  I did find a couple of teachers who had giveaways and, of course, those got a lot of responses.  I feel a little shy about sharing my feedback publicly.  I find that often times the comments already made are repetitive.  I do try to leave positive feedback, as the tone of words written on a computer can never be clear.  It's much easier to share with my teammates because they are there in person to see your body language and hear your tone.  They also know me and can make negative comments in a way that are constructive and we can work through things together.  I am hoping to read Ms. Bainbridge's Class blog more this summer.  It sounds as though we have similar teaching styles and use some of the same tools (Daily 5, Cafe) for reading.  Her site explains how she organizes her time, which is helpful when I reflect on my practices.  She has a lot of practical information and things I can use in my room.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Tool #1

I created my blog and it wasn't too difficult!  I am lucky that I've had a little experience before with my classroom blog.  I'd like to be better about keeping up with it in order to utilize it more with my students/parents.