Thursday, November 29, 2007

Assistive Technology

After reading the two articles on assistive technology, I feel as if technology in the classroom has come a long way. There are so many options for students who have disabilities. The only drawback is funding and not being able to get tools or equipment that students need. My favorite tools that we read about was the eReader. eReader can create books for students and reads the words/sentences outloud. I think this is a great tool because it not only benefits students with disabilities, but it can be used by any student as a fun reading tool.

Going to School Online

I do realize that there are some people who can benefit from virtual high schools, but it is just really hard for me to grasp the idea. They say it is very helpful in low income areas, but how do these students get the computers, high speed Internet, cameras, and other expensive tools to make the virtual classroom work? The rural students who may have to leave school in order to help on the farm might also have similar issues. I live in the middle of no where and my house still has dial-up because nothing else is available out in the corn fields.

Besides the availability of technology I also cannot understand how one teacher can effectively reach 300 students at one time from hundreds of miles away. Student-teacher interaction and person attention are vital to a quality education and I just cannot see how either of those is possible in a virtual classroom like the ones mentioned in the article. As a future educator I want to see my students, be able to notice when they raise their had and imediately attend to their question. I want to be SURE that they are understanding the material. Especially in math I want to visually present the material and see the reations on my students faces to assure me that they are following along with full understanding. These issues may be addressed regaurding virtual high schools in the future, but right now I just cannot see how it is effective enough to provide a quality education.

Assistive Technology

I found both of the articles and reading various sites about assistive technology to be very informative and eye opening for me. I was able to find a product that helps to put books and other reading materials on a screen and then with either the push of a button or on a timer will turn the page for you so that you dont need to hold the book yourself and it can be seen in front of you. I think this would be very helpful to use with children who have just had surgery and are unable to use their arms to read. This could help them to stay up on their class work they might be missing but accomodates for them at the same time. It was ideas like this that I found to be very interesting and give me ideas for what kinds of things are out there to help children with. As I read more and more I find more things that can help me to use with the kids I will be working with. Even though I will not be necessarily working with children who have learning disabilities, there may be some kids who are having some troubles doing normal daily functions because of the disease they are getting treated for or possibly have been handicapped in some way from the operation and are waiting to get healed so they can continue with normal daily life. I think it is great that there are so many ideas out there for teachers and others to use, but I really dont think many people are aware of everything they have available and so through articles like this we can learn about the new trends and see what all is out there for us to use. As technology continues to evolve, I believe there will be even more things out there for people who have a disability of some kind to help them be like other kids and not feel as though they are being left out because of a disease or having an operation.

Assistive Technology

After reading the two articles on assistive technology, I realized that it is important for all teachers to be aware of technology that can help students with learning disabilities. Many times, people associate students with learning disabilities as special education candidates. This is problematic, however, because there are some students that have slight learning disabilities that can participate fully in any classroom. It is important for a teachers to be aware of their students' disabilities and accommodate them accordingly. This is where knowing assistive technology becomes important. If a teacher is aware of the helpful tools that can assist students in completing their work, learning the lessons, or just participating in classroom discussion, then a teacher can help create a positive educational experience for every student despite disability or iniquity.

Virtual Classroom

After reading the article about virtual classrooms in the United States and around the world, I had mixed emotions. First, I was not aware of the growing popularity of these virtual classrooms. I knew people at the college level who took online courses, but I did not know they were offered at the high school level. I think these virtual classrooms need to be more publicized because I do not think many people are aware that they exist. I think the virtual classrooms also need to be highly monitored to ensure that students are using them in the correct manner.

I do not think that these virtual classrooms will eliminate the need for actual teachers. Even if classes are taught online, someone has to create the lessons and monintor tests and discussions. I do think that the personal interactions are cut out if students are taking an online class, but I do not think that the virtual classroom will completely take over. Many people do not like interacting with a computer and learn better when actually interacting with people. I think the virtual classroom is a great way for students to earn extra credits and it is perfect for students that cannot get to school or have other committments.

Assistive Technology

Classroom", not only did teachers find the possibilities of The concepts of Assistive technology, yet again, has great potential in helping those students struggling because of either mental or physical disorders. However, it is important for teachers to not only be familiar with the technical advances but also familiar with the students to know whether or not the assistive technology is truly necessary. When reading the articles "Special Technological Possibilities for Students with Special Needs" and "Assistive Technology in the technology beneficial, they also found them to be blocking student progress.

One teacher found that the assistive technology the student was using, with her cerebral palsy, actually caused more fatigue and struggled with her creativity in the classroom. So according to this case study, assistive technology might not be the answer to every problem in the classroom. I see the concepts of assistive technology a great way to help a student, but I believe the creativity of the teacher and their one-on-one interactions/friendship with the students can develop a way to help them in the classroom.

Ultimately, technology is a great way to help others, but in the case of funding and learning new technological advances, sometime I feel that it takes away from overcoming problems by diminishing thoughts of creativity. I don't know...I feel that turning to technology for solving issues should be one of the later thoughts, only because funding for programs is so difficult in most situations.

Assistive Technology/tech integration

I am struggling with understanding how to use assistive technology in a Spanish classroom. I just wonder how practical and realistic it is to use that kind of technology. At this point in my professional development, it is hard for me to imagine myself using assistive technology in my classroom. I have worked in Special Ed classrooms, and I can see how useful the technology would be for those students. But because I never had a student with special needs in any of my high school classes it is hard for me to understand how that would work. I think if I ever had a student with special needs in my classroom, then I could research technology to help that person. But it is hard right now to blindly understand how to integrate this technology.

I think that integrating technology is extremely important to the future of education. There are so many more opportunities and resources for students that are in tech-friendly classrooms. However, I think that there is a limit to how large a role technology should have. I still think there is a lot of value to some of the more traditional forms of learning. I think technology should be there to enhance learning and not take over learning. I do not agree with virtual high schools in most cases. I can see how they would be useful in areas where other forms of education are not available. But I do not think they should be taking over areas that have perfectly good schools. I think the role of the teacher and other classmates is essential to learning. I don't think the same quality of education would ensue from a virtual classroom.

Assistive Technology/Tech Integration

There seems to be a number of different ways to integrate technology into the classroom, including the use of assistive technology. I think that teachers should do all that they can to find different forms of assistive technology that could possibly help any and all of their students that have any type of learning disability or disorder. All students should be given a fair chance to succeed. So if the use of a certain form of assistive technology helps to put a particular student on the same playing field as the other students, a teacher needs to recognize that. Even when assistive technology is not needed, teachers should still find ways to integrate other forms of technology into the classroom. Using technology can help teachers and students alike achieve many things they could not do otherwise.

Assistive technology

After becoming more familiar with the growing trend of virtual high schools, I have mixed feelings about it. I, along with the rest of our class, really feel that the social environment of a high school is super important in the educational and maturation process of each student. A high school, which often times can be seen as a social war zone with all the different types of social groups and organizations, provides students with a glimpse of reality. Throughout life, we all have to learn to communicate and associate with all types of people with all different personalities and I think that high school provides students with an opportunity to begin interacting with and learning from the students surrounding them. On the other hand, virtual high school is a great tool. By providing advanced and diversified classes, it opens up more opportunities for each student. Not every student progresses at the same pace or learns in the same way and I think that virtual high schools do a good job of providing students who are more advanced or prefer learning on their own a way to really succeed.

Virtual High Schools

This idea bothers me a little bit. I understand that the opportunity for virtual classrooms can be a valuable asset for some students, but I believe that the traditional classroom is still an asset. These classes are great for the student who has an extended leave from school due to illness or because of a rigorous training schedule for a sport, like ice skating in the article. However, I can't say that I would ever seek this type of an education for my own kids. The experience of being in school and the interaction and communication skills that children learn is invaluable. How can you expect adults to work cooperatively on a project for a business if they were never expected to work on a project with their classmates? I'm sure my idea of this may be a little exaggerated because I'm so unfamiliar with this technology, but I don't see it replacing most schools. The article also talked about how this was a great opportunity for kids in low income schools with classrooms that were filled beyond capacity, but that doesn't seem to make sense to me either. If a student is from a low income community in a school that can't get appropriate funding, where are the students getting the money for a computer, internet service, or a webcam that may be necessary for videoconferencing with a teacher? If states can't fund schools so they have appropriate facilities and simple necessities like desks for each student, then how can they support and fund online schools? I think a lot of other needs in our school systems need to be addressed before we can create a successful online school. I guess I'll just learn about this as the technology develops, maybe it'll grow on me, but as of right now I just don't understand it.

Tech Integration/ Assistive Technology

I think there is a lot of skeptism about virtual high schools. I understand the concerns that many people offer, however, I see a lot of benefits from these schools. I think they can offer a great opportunity for students who may not have the ability or the chance to take that specific course. Many people were expressing concerns about the possibility of not needing teachers anymore, but I feel this is as little far fetched. There will always be schools, especially since not all students can handle online courses. Learning online requires a new way of thinking and learning and some students may not want to do that or may not be very good at that type of learning. It is because of these students that teachers will still have jobs. I see virtual high schools as a way to enhance a student's learning, not to replace it.

Assistive technology is a great way to incorporate students with disabilities into the classroom. The education system, as a whole, has been making a tend to incorporate students with disabilities into a classroom so that they feel a little more "normal" and not so much as an outsider. By providing these technologies to different students, they will be able to have that chance to be able to be in a main stream classroom and to actually succeed.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Flickr and Webquests

While I think that it is really fun to work with digital images I'm not sure how I feel about Flickr. There are definitely a lot of good tools, like notes, tagging, and the map but I felt like it was a very confusing program to use. I had trouble uploading my pictures and then rotating them. It is hard to organize the photos and even rearrange them. I feel like there are a lot of limitations to this program. We also had trouble getting everyone into the groups and seeing everyones photos. In the group, the photos are not even organized. That means that if I wanted to see one person's pictures and see their story I would not be able to. I felt very constrained by this program.

I think WebQuests are really cool and I never knew about them before. I never did one when I was in school. I think they are extremely applicable to a Spanish classroom and I think it would be a good comprehesive project for students to work on. If you pick a good one, many skills can be practiced all in one project. Oftentimes, the WebQuests get students to think about Spanish outside of the classroom and lets them experience the language in different contexts. I think that is really important in helping students understand future goals and opportunities that they have with a languge skill.

Webquests in the Classroom

I think Webquest will be VERY helpful in the field. Coming up with lesson plans can sometimes be very difficult. It is great to have a way for teachers to share their ideas with others. I can see myself looking at other's Webquests and then modifying it for my own classroom. Many of the Webquests I have found are ways to use math in everyday life. I think this is especially excellent because many students do not understand the importance of math in their own world. There were lessons dealing with vacations, weather, sports, shopping, etc. Students will most likely be interested in one of these topics if not all of them. I have found that students are more motivated and willing to put in extra effort when they are interested in the project. With the thousands of Webquests out there I know I can find one that fits each individual class and I might even be motivated to create my own! It will be difficult to choose one that I think is the best, because there are so many that I like!

WebQuests and Flickr

I think WebQuest can be a very useful addition to a classroom. Today we were able to scan a couple of different WebQuests and figure out which are good and which don't really qualify as a WebQuest. I think they are beneficial because they can teach about a specific topic related to the class as well as involving higher order thinking. WebQuests are designed to make you think, not to just give you the answer. They help students learn while having fun. I really enjoyed the WebQuest about mathematicians. Students get the opportunity to learn about different mathematicians as well as being creative and picking which one they like the best. This WebQuest also includes a lot of other fun games and activities which are hyperlinked form the original page.

I am beginning to feel more comfortable with Flickr. I can see the benefits from it, however, for beginners, I feel it is somewhat difficult. There are a lot of different options to pick such as public or private. These desicions can make it difficult when trying to work with Flickr as a class. If the teacher is very fluent with Flickr and knows what they are doing and how to explain it, then I think it can be beneficial. The teacher really has to know what they are doing because I know a lot of people can become frustrated with Flickr. I mean, we had a lot of difficulties in our own classroom and we are all pretty compentent with technology. In other words, I feel one has to be careful when it comes to Flickr.

WebQuests

I really like the idea of WebQuests. I think that it's a great and useful technology and use of the web in class. There are so many great WebQuests out there already, so why not make use of them? I like that the purpose is plainly laid out and they are intended for higher thinking, so I feel that their standards would make it difficult to come across a bad WebQuest. I had no idea that this was out there, some of the projects that I read about while browsing the English WebQuests seemed reminiscent of projects I did during high school, but my teachers always presented them as their own ideas. I wonder if they got inspiration from similar WebQuests. I think the article, which talked about modifying WebQuests for students who have learning disabilities was very interesting as well. The modifications don't take that much time but they could do a world of good for students who need modifications. I also like that WebQuests teaches students to look at quality websites and it is more interactive than text books. Text books were not my friend in high school, I thought they were big and heavy and I never enjoyed reading assignments out of them, and I don't think I was alone in feeling that way. I think this technology definitely has a place in high school, and should be utilized.

Flickr and WebQuest

As with some of the other projects we've done this semester, I didn't really see the application of Flickr to mathematics at first. After some time, however, I saw how a math teach teach could be resourceful and find a use for a technology such as flickr, even if it is a stretch.

On the other hand, I can see clearly how WebQuests could be useful in teaching mathematics. I think that using WebQuests would be a great way of having students do projects or even just homework. WebQuests make students use the resources of the internet to accomplish the same tasks that they do in class. One advantage of WebQuests that we haven't really discussed yet is that they are environmentally friendly. I'm sure that any WebQuest project could be assigned using a paper format, but having the online format saves paper.

Flickr, LD Webquest

The introduction to both Flickr and Webquest this week has been so informative. Flickr is a really neat way to post, organize and share pictures. I feel like I have to investigate and learn more about the available tools for Flickr because right now I only am familiar with the basics. I think Flickr can be a really resourceful learning tool with the ability to label certain parts of pictures as well as using the notes application as a way to further explain the significance of the picture. Webquest is another new teaching tool to me that if it weren't for this class I am afaid I would have never learned about. I think the concept behind Webquest is very dynamic and can really be beneficial for all types of students. The process and direction that a Webquest provides a student increases the student's capacity to learn about the topic. The internet can sometimes be too vast and can become overwhelming and I think the Webquest does a great job of making the web a navigable and possible task for student's of all ages.

Flickr & Webquest

I like the Flickr tool because it is easy to use and upload photos. I liked the slideshow we were able to create, but I do not like that Flickr can only handle so many photos. We could use other websites or even powerpoint to create a slideshow with more photos. For classroom purposes, however, I think Flickr is an appropriate addition to lessons and projects that students will enjoy using. I especially like the note feature that allows you to add text to the photos. This is very handy for imagery analysis, ect. and could even be used on text if a text image was uploaded.

I LOVE webquests! I think they are so much fun and students enjoy doing them. They are similar to research projects, but much more entertaining. I was overjoyed at all the English related webquests there are out there. I think this is one of the most valuable resources we have found all semester. I would incoporate these webquests any chance I get in my classroom because they encompass so many resources.

Webquests

I believe that webquests are a great tool to use in the classroom. It reminds me of many of the projects that I had to do as a student, but in digital form. For example, I found a webquest about "To Kill a Mockingbird" about looking at life through another character's perspective. I did a project like this in high school, but instead of using resources on the internet, we had to spend class time going to the library and research about the book, characters, time period. Though researching physically through books is a great way to do it, a webquest cuts out a lot of time in the process and enables you to work more on the project.

Webquests are a fun way to learn and engage students in technology. I noticed that good webquests do not just GIVE information but enforce the concepts of researching and critical thinking. I was also surprised while searching that I found many useful webquests that were of high standards. It is nice to have a layout of many webquests, because you can always modify them later to fit your classroom, students, and time period.

Webquest

Webquests are useful because they are an interactive project that allows students to think on a higher level than most regular classroom projects. Webquests separate the work in groups evenly, giving distinctions for each member and help students really focus in and out of the classroom. Most webquests are also fun and allow students to create an interactive project that can be shared and enjoyed amongst the classroom. Because they are so specific to a single topic, webquests are also incredibly informative and applicable to lessons. When I start teaching, I would definitely use webquests if I had the resources because they help focus students and show students that they can discover facts and information on a given topic all by themselves. All a teacher really has to do is provide a little bit of structure and instruction and students are able to explore multiple resources about their topics.

Intro to WebQuests

I really didnt care for the Flickr project because the topic was a little harder for me to write a story about the pictures I took after going on a campus tour. I think if the topic was a different one then I may have enjoyed it more, but overall I didnt necessarily care for it more than other similar projects we might do. I think it may be a topic that is a little too advanced for the age of children that I will be working with.

I had never even heard of WebQuests before we were assigned to read the article about them and then started to explore them in class today. First, I thought the article was very informative and could really help someone who would be working with children who have learning disabilities. I also think that something like a WebQuest could be good for them since the steps are broken down more and there is a lot of explanation involved with what they are to do. I dont know if I am personally going to be working with children who have learning disabilities but I could see me working or interacting with a child who will be slower in learning possibly after they have a large amount of treatments done or do through some extensive surgery that has altered their life.

After getting a brief look into some WebQuests, I think it is a really cool idea and something that I could see myself using in the future. The one that sticks out the most is the one that had to do with children making their own board game up and focusing on a part of the body and a system and ultimatly becoming a "doctor". I could see using this to have the child create a game that focuses on the part of the body they are having the treatment or operation done on. This would let them get to know their body better and how that system works. The more the child knows about their body and what is going on, the less likely they will be to be nervous about everything and unknowing of what is going on. I think these can be very helpful for young children to learn about a variety of topics through technology and not just me talking to them about different things. I look forward to finding more and more WebQuests that can be applicable for my job in the future.

Just a little fun...

HOW DO YOU KNOW YOU ARE A TEACHER?
by Jeff Foxworthy
1. You can hear 25 voices behind you and know exactly which one belongs to the child out of line.
2. You get a secret thrill out of laminating something.
3. You walk into a store and hear the words 'It's Ms/Mr. _________' and know you have been spotted.
4. You have 25 people that accidentally call you Mom/Dad at one time or another.
5. You can eat a multi-course meal in under twenty-five minutes.
6. You've trained yourself to go to the bathroom at two distinct times of the day: lunch and prep period.
7. You start saving other people's trash, because most likely, you can use that toilet paper tube or plastic butter tub for something in the classroom.
8. You believe the teachers' lounge should be equipped with a margarita machine.
9. You want to slap the next person who says 'Must be nice to work 7 to 3 and have summers off.'
10. You believe chocolate is a food group.
11. You can tell if it's a full moon without ever looking outside.
12. You believe that unspeakable evils will befall you if anyone says 'Boy, the kids sure are mellow today.'
13. You feel the urge to talk to strange children and correct their behavior when you are out in public.
14. You believe in aerial spraying of Ritalin.
15. You think caffeine should be available in intravenous form.
16. You spend more money on school stuff than you do on your own children.
17. You can't pass the school supply aisle without getting at least five items!
18. You ask your friends if the left hand turn he just made was a 'good choice or a bad choice.' 19. You find true beauty in a can full of perfectly sharpened pencils.
20. You are secretly addicted to hand sanitizer and finally,
21. You understand instantaneously why a child behaves a certain way after meeting his or her parents.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Virtual Field Trips

I really like the idea of a virtual field trip as a supplement to a real field trip. I don't think field trips should be replaced electronically because they are so valuable for students, nothing is as powerful as seeing something for yourself, something real. However, I feel that virtual field trips are a great option for a museum out of state, such as the Smithsonian, which have great exhibits but are impossible to get to for some schools. I also think they're a good option for either pre-field trips or post-field trip review. I don't think they can replace field trips for schools that can't afford busses and the other expenses associated with field trips, because if they can't afford bus fares how can they afford computer labs? On the whole I do think that virtual field trips can add to the classroom experience during a single class period.

I also think Digital Images have a potentially great place in the classroom. They can add so much and they address the needs of kids who are visual learners. Digital images can be very powerful in stimulating a students senses. I really look forward to incorporating images into my classroom, I think it is very possible to incorporate images into almost all aspects of English, as long as you're creative.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Digital Images

Digital images are quite useful in a classroom because they have so many uses. I really like the idea of a virtual field trip. As we mentioned, some schools cannot afford to go on field trips and some places are just too far away. With virtual field trips, students can explore without ever leaving the classroom. Digital images also add a lot to lessons and projects. By the time we are teaching, students will be so much more knowledgeable about digital imaging and videos that they will have to be an integral part of our lessons. Many students are learn better with visual aids as well. With all the databases and resources, it is so easy to incorporate digital images into almost any lesson.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Virtual Field Trips

I think that taking a virtual field trip is a great alternative to taking an actual field trip when funds, time, etc. are not readily available. However, I do not think that virtual field trips should take over the real thing. There is just no comparison to up looking at a 2-story dinosaur; seeing a picture cannot do it justice. Teachers need to find a balance between using virtual field trips as a resource in the classroom and taking their students on actual field trips. As one of the articles pointed out, a virtual field trip could be a great way to get students ready to go on an actual field trip.

Digital Pictures

Digital pictures can be very useful in the classroom. They help students experience a hands-on lesson that is interesting and breaks the monotony of classroom activity. Taking the project that we were assigned on Thursday, we were able to get out of the classroom and create something using our own methods and tools. By creating a visual story, students are able to explore many levels of imagination and creativity. The technological benefits are also important in the development of students in a world that is always progressing in terms of innovation.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Digital Images, Virtual Field Trips

I think that digital images are a really useful tool in the classroom. It can make a lesson very clear by bringing it to the outside world. It is also good to incorporate images to meet the needs of visual learners. But in general, I think all students benefit from visual representations of things. It is also a good tool for students to use in their own projects. Using different media types keeps things new and interesting for students. There are a lot of ways to be creative with images and creativity is also a valuable skill to learn.

I think the idea of a virtual field trip is really interesting. While sometimes, it is better to take a real field trip, I think that virtual ones have a lot of potential. I never really had a virtual field trip when I was in school so I'm not exactly sure how it would work, but it sounds interesting. Someone made a point in class about being able to "visit" places that are otherwise unaccessable for a classroom. For example, in Spanish students can "visit" the different countries we study. They can investigate museums in other countries, and do other activities that would otherwise be available to them. I am really excited to learn more about this technology and learn how to implement it in my classroom.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Lots of Images

I thought that the article about the museum tours and virtual tours was very interesting. I am not sure how exactly I would be able to tie something like that into working with a patient but if the child I was working with had a big obsession for art work or loved going to a museum and was not going to be able to for while because of their situation. This would be something I could pull up on a computer or possibly something like a Smartboard if I would have access to one and let the child pretend like they are actually going through the museum themselves. I think this could be really neat especially if it could get enlarged onto a really big screen.

After getting a quick introduction to Flickr, I think this could also be a problem that I use with children in some way. I was thinking about a project idea and thought that I would be able to take pictures of different parts of the hospital and operation room and other areas where the child will be and title them and add in notes and a description so if the child can not go on a physical tour of the hospital they would still get to see where they are going to be so they can ask questions and try to feel as comfortable as possible. I think this can be a program that would help me and I am looking forward to finding out more about it and how I will be able to use it.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Virtual Field Trips

I enjoyed reading these two articles. I thought they offered a lot of good suggestions about virtual field trips. I think virtual field trips are a good idea for any class, but especially for those schools who are short on money. Now, I think actual field trips are good and beneficial and should be kept if possible, but virtual field trips have many benefits as well. One of the best things is that they can only take up one period which is nice because they don't disrupt any other subjects. Actual field trips usually take the whole day and so the students end up missing all of their classes instead of just the subject they went for. I think they can offer a lot of substantial information, especially since a lot of museums are handing out information and programs to schools. You can learn just as much from a virtual field trip as from the actual one. Virtual field trips also save a lot of money. They cut down on the cost of transportation, admissions, and a meal. They also cut out the need for a permission slip. Virtual field trips are good not only for a replacement, but also as an enhancement to the actual field trip.

Flickr

New project time...and the introduction is Flickr. Yet again...this is a new program for me and hadn't heard of this before. I can already see how beneficial it can be. Students can learn from it (especially using the notes options) to see what is important in the pictures. I don't know what exactly I would use this for in a classroom. Maybe to discuss different cultures, histories, maybe tie in media when teaching different types of literatures. Possibly use it to help show speeches...but it is nice to have a new tool introduced. It should be interesting to see how everyone uses it to benefit their students.

Flicker

We only had a quick introduction to Flicker, but I can already see how it would be very interesting. I like that you can add notes in order to highlight the main objects of your photo. Also, for Spanish it would be very helpful to point out the objects for vocabulary practice. As for math, I wish I could change the size of the note box. The objects that I want to highlight are larger than the tiny box that appears. I am curious what else we are going to do with Flicker.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Digital images

I am excited about this project. I am creating a virtual field trip through Granada, Spain. I am a very visual learner so this is a fun project for me to create. It is very important that as a future teacher I am able to adapt my teaching to all different types of learning styles. This project definately helps me establish a better understanding of how to incorporate visual learning into my classroom. I really appreciate all the resources that we have been made aware of in this project because they are all very valuable.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Digital Image Project

I feel a little bit better about this project now. At first, I didn't think that it was very relevant for a math curriculum, but now I see how it can be. I decided to do my project as a field trip of arches around the world. After looking at all of the different types of arches, I could go over the geometric formula for arches and show how each formula applies to each arch.

Digital Images

This week was a very good week I think, I am very excited about this project. I think it's cool that we are creating projects using digital images, I think it might be tough to find images for my project but not impossible. I am a very visual learner so I think it's cool to include images into lessons. My project includes two visual stimuli, the pictures and words to help students read along but they can also listen during the presentation. I wish my teachers had incorporated more visual cues for me while I was in school.
There are many more resources than I had realized, such as ARTstor and such. There are so many quality resources online that I've never heard of and had no previous knowledge of, that it's a shame it almost seems like some good websites go to waste because people are unaware of them. I can easily see how digital images can be incorporated into the classroom through both lessons and projects for the students, and I can't wait to get into the field and incorporate such projects!

Digital Images

So it is time to prepare for another project. The use of images in the classroom is very handy when teaching new subject matters and just in general to help students to engage themselves in the lesson. The project that we are developing (consisting of combining digital images to create a project) is unique and intriguing because there is a lot to do with images. As we learned, there are virtual tours, creative writing, math skills, and many other chances to combine imagery with lessons.

I know as a student it is always nice to see teachers combine both written, verbal, and visionary aspects to a lesson. I am a visual person so seeing pictures/words always helps me remember information longer as opposed to just lectures. I also feel using digital images, the students will enjoy the classroom more because it is a different aspect every time.

Digital Images

At first, I was a little hesitant with digital images. I didn't know how I was going to be able to incorporate images into a math lesson. I mean, besides finding pictures of great mathematicians, I really had no clue what to do. After seeing the sample projects, I began to think outside the box. Images don't have to directly relate to the subject. It is the job of the teacher to be creative and to figure out a way to incorporate images into the lesson. I realized that geometry is everywhere in the world. All you have to do is look a little deeper. I now know how important it is to be creative and incorporate images into the classroom.

As far as the article goes, I still am a little unsure about it. I still feel that it is important to go to a computer lab to do a project instead of using a computer in the classroom. I think having one computer in a class is more of an elementary idea instead of a high school situation. I think there are other ways to incorporate technology into the classroom and we should focus on those.

Ditigital Divide

I think there is a concern about digital divide in all classrooms. Many teachers in today's educational system understand the importance of technology in the classroom and fear falling behind in the world of technology. There is, more than ever, a need for more computers and technology in the classroom. Many of us today talked about the fact that there may be only one computer in a high school classroom with about twenty five students. This creates an obvious problem and creates a need for more computers. Even if schools have computer labs, they will be constantly utilized if every class is trying to use its resources. Also, in lower income schools, computers and other technologies are completely out of the question as funding is needed elsewhere. Again, this is problematic because students who attend these lower income schools suffer and fall behind in a world that is dominated by technology.

People should start taking action to remedy this problem by donating time, money, and resources. However, the need for other resources such as books and adequate supplies is, sadly, still extremely high for some schools and is a much more pressing need.

Digital Images

I am excited for this project because I feel like I can put a lot of creativity behind it. Pictures are always a lot of fun to work with and relating them to math will be very useful in the future. I believe that students will be more interested in a subject if there are visuals to go along with the topic. A photo essay, virtual field trip, etc are great ways to keep their attention while discussing and important subject. Especially for geometry, I feel that being able to work with digital images will be helpful in the classroom. I think there are many ways to incorporate images into a geometry lesson, making it easy for the students to relate to the topic. I feel like this project will be a lot of work and I hope that I can give it the appropriate time to make it worth while.

Going Digital

I thought that the article about Digital Divide was very interesting because it made me think back to my personal experiences in high school with computer activities. My family did not have access to the Internet in our house until I got into the later years of school and it was very hard on me to do some projects at home that would use the Internet because I was unable to do them and had to go into school early or do an alternate project because of this. I always felt as though I was the outsider because I was the only person in my classes to be at the disadvantage and not many of my teachers would think about this before they would give the assignments out. I was always shocked that no one would ask before making up the project if there was anyone who would not have this capability at home of using the Internet. From these experiences, I know that I will always ask someone before assuming they have this access so they would not have to feel in the same way that I did when I was in classes.

When it comes to the project about digital images, I am very excited for this one and think it will be the most fun one I have done yet. This allows for my personal creative side to come out more and use pictures and ideas that I am familiar with and want to use. It will also give people in the class a chance to know me a little bit better than they do. I also feel that it will be very relateable to my profession and with the idea I have come up with, I could honestly see myself using it one day with a child.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Copyright, Cyber ethics and Podcasts

I looked at the copyright rules for a long time and I still don't really know what is legal and what is not. It is very confusing to understand what you can and cannot do. It is especially confusing when I think back to school and I think about some of the experiences I had. I have a feeling that some of the copyright rules were broken when we watched films or the teacher handed out materials. Therefore, I am very confused about what is right and wrong. Unfortunately, a mistake could lead to a major consequence.

I think cyber ethics is very imporatant to discuss with students. There is so much information about people on the web that it is becoming increasingly difficult to monitor what kids are actually doing. The web is a very public sphere, but activity is easily hidden from parents and teachers. It is sad that so much bullying, stalking and other things like this go on in young childrens' lives. The internet has caused a lot of children to grow up very quickly and they have access to information and privileges that should come with age.

I am really pleased to find how useful I find podcasts. I think they are extremely applicable to the Spanish classroom. They are good for listening exercises, literature, grammar and culture. It is especially good for students to practice listening to native speakers, instead of me all the time. The videos are also useful in bringing worldwide content to the classroom. I am really excited about figuring out how to use this technology in my classroom and creating lessons that excite and engage students.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Cyber-Ethics and Podcasts

I want to talk about filtering that many schools use in order to try and prevent students from the many dangers online. At my high school several websites were blocked. Many were inappropriate sites that students shouldn't be on at anytime, but others were websites that the school just didn't want students to get distracted by during class. However, this proposed some problems when working on/researching projects. I remember when we had to do a math project about baseball statistics, but I could not get onto ESPN.com or MLB.com because they were blocked. There should be some sort of system where websites can be authorized under certain circumstances so that problems like these do not occur.

As for the podcasts, I don't really find them extremely helpful for math. There is a lot of visuals and representations that need to be shown in math lessons. Therefore I find the videos much more useful for my future classroom. I believe that when students can see what is being explained they understand it better and more clearly.

Podcasts/Videos & Cyber Ethics

I like the current project of searching for relevant podcasts and videos. It is extremely important to be able to find and utilize these technological tools in the classroom. In addition to the fact that students are becoming more and more used to learning through technology, podcasts and videos can give the student a new/different way of learning something. Having a teacher always lecture in front of the class can get old real quick, so having an alternative method of conveying information is a good way to keep students engaged.

It is a shame how some people take advantage of technology. It is because of these cyber bullies that people even have to waste time coming up with cyber ethics. I don't understand why people can't just be responsible and treat others with respect.

Cyberbullying/Podcasts

I think that online protection agencies and software is only a temporary and somewhat ineffective solution to the cyberbullying problem. I agree that these methods are affective, but I wonder at what cost? There are countless times that research in the classroom is hindered as a result of these anti-bullying technologies. They are almost too effective. Also, many cyberbullies are computer hackers and firewalls and protection software are only minor setbacks in their desire to push other users around cyberspace. However, as of right now, there doesn't seem to be a software or agency that provides complete protection as well as allow full browsing capacity. I would have to agree, as a result, that I would employ the use of these tools to protect my students and family.

In terms of podcasts, I have a more solid understanding about how effective they really can be. I enjoyed searching for relevant podcasts and their applicability to lessons and classroom activities is astonishing. They can be used in so many different ways for so many different things. I am really looking forward to exploring more podcasts and their usefulness in the classroom.

Podcasts and the Internet

I think it's very important for people to know about cyberbullying and cyber-ethics. I think the Internet can be a very scary place, and a lot of children and students feel invincible and safe. I think it's important for teachers and the school to work with the community to find a reasonable compramise about how the Internet should be best utilized in school. I think that each community is going to have a different opinion and it's extremely important to feed off of the community and parents. I think the school has a responsibility to keep the students safe to the best of their ability, and Internet use should be a monitored and constructive time within the classroom lesson. In this day and age, it's foolish to say that the Internet shouldn't be allowed in the classroom, because that would only be a disadvantage to your students. I heard about a website that allows a person to create their own social network, so it's much more controlled and only specific people are allowed in, I think this could be a great tool for the classroom. If teachers created a social network that is specific to each class, therefore limiting the people who can access it to your students alone. I imagine it's something like pipeline, but to be honest I'm not entirely sure.

About the podcasts, I'm surprised by how successful I've been finding quality podcasts. There's so much information on the Internet nowadays that it's almost overwhelming. I feel like the Del.icio.us website has really helped me narrow down the quality podcasts, and it's done a nice job refining my searches. I struggle with when I would use a podcast over a videocast though, if you could incorporate an audio and visual in one thing, why wouldn't you? I like that we're researching videocasts as well. I feel that both have a very useful place in the classroom, as always if properly incorporated into the lesson plan.

Podcasts

At first, I was not sure what to think of the idea of podcasts as well as videocasts. I had never really heard of them before and was not sure what purpose they were going to serve me as a child life specialist. However, after learning more about them and beginning to search for some on the Internet, I was amazed at how many there were that I would be able to use when working with young kids. The ones I liked the most were the ones that were by kids because I think that helps the children to relate more when they are listening to something by someone more their own age instead of an adult. I have also found some good videos that will help children to prepare for an operation and hopefully feel less calm about what they are going to be going through. Showing these videos as well as listening to podcasts will be used as a distraction tool to try and keep kids from worrying too much about their procedure and have some fun while they are in the hospital.

While I was reading the articles about cyber-ethics and cyber-bullying, I thought it was interesting and sad how many issues there have been related to this topic. Sometimes I feel as though there are parents who are not aware of what all their child is doing while they are on the Internet and that is leading to some of these problems. After reading these, I think it is still a really good idea for some hospitals to have computers available for the children so they could play games or do some other activities that have been planned, but I think there needs to be some kind of regulation on the sites. I would suggest for the computer to only have access to certain sites that have been approved as appropriate for the children to be on and have some relevence to what they are going through. I think as long as there are rules set and the children are aware of what they can and cant do as well as have some kind of blocker up for certain sites one does not want a child to go to, then it should be ok.

Podcasts/Videos and Cyberbullying/ethics

Before Tuesday and today, I didn't really know much about podcasts. I had tried to figure them out before as well as had friends try to explain them to me. The problem was that I never really understood them. I feel a lot more confident about my knowledge about podcasts. I know that they are an audio file that can provide a great deal of knowledge about a subject. I can see how they can be useful in a classroom. They provide students with another way of learning about a topic. It is always nice to be able to switch up the way students are learning, plus it gives them a chance to learn from someone else instead of listening to me all the time. The same thing goes for videos. Videos can provide entertainment as well as knowledge to the students. The videos can be extremely educational and beneficial to the class, however, if the students are watching from an entertainment view, they will like the video more without realizing that they are still learning.

I was shocked to find out so much about the cyberbullying. I knew that there were bullies out there and that this type of thing did occur, however, I didn't know how bad it was. I was shocked with the statistics. I can't believe that there are so many people out there trying to bully people through the internet. It definitely makes me more careful about signing online homework. I can see how parents can get scared and nervous about their children using the internet even though they might mean well.

Podcasts/videos

After extensively researching podcasts and videocasts in class for the past couple days, I am absolutely amazed at how large the field for both resources is. The possibilities for finding a pod/video cast are endless. I think it is a great tool for all teachers to be aware and to incorporate into the classroom. Pod/video casts are especially helpful for second language teachers because it allows the students access to listening to native speakers speak the language as well as seeing the traditions and practices of the culture. On top of pod/video casting being a great tool for teachers, it is a wonderful way to stimulate the student's attention and get them interested in a topic beyond the daily reading and activities.

I feel that the internet can be a very very dangerous place for young children in our society. There are so many people out there that spend their lives trying to hack into other people's personal information. It is so important that parents are aware of their child's internet activity and that parents are educated enough on the internet to monitor their children's activities as well. I am aware that as a future teacher I am going to be responsible for protecting my student's identities on the internet and for educating my student's on the benefits yet the dangers as well of using the internet.

Podcasts and VCasts

I have really enjoyed learning about the process of podcasts and vcasts lately. They can be a lot of use in the classroom when it comes to lesson plans and just developing a visual for students. It hasn't been to hard developing a lesson idea off of the information I have found; in addition I am assuming that it isn't too difficult to find media to enhance a lesson. One thing that an educator has to be aware about is the differences in websites being restricted in some places as opposed to others. So the validity of the website you are receiving the podcast from should be of a higher standard. For example...

I have a friend who is student teaching and she made a bunch of slides using famous speeches from youtube.com. When she went to present her material before her co-op, the site was banned because it was not a legitimate site to use on school properties.

I think this poses a solution more than a problem, because then you have to pay attention to where the information is coming from and whether or not it is trustworthy.

In addition to many of the good found on the internet, it can also lead to many bad situations. On a comment about bullying...it has been taken to a new level. It seems that our systems haven't even found a good way to control bullying in the real world...so in addition we have to worry about cyber bullying.

Cyber bullying can be very dangerous because of the ability to access people. However, it is also easier to catch a predator because of the trail that person leaves behind. How do we control or diminish the problem of cyber bullying? The concepts written by Hummel discuss the no tolerance rules under being caught bullying. Though it might always be a problem, at least there are rules and regulations on how to deal with the victim to make them feel safer on the internet. However, knowledge seems to be an occurring theme in using technology. The more informed a person is about the uses and missuses...we can have a safer environment.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Podcasts

After exploring the world of postcasting today, I found that I am growing more and more interested. I was really turned-off by the idea of podcasts before because I did not see the purpose of them. These podcasts seem much easier that just videos online, and they can be updated frequently. I like the idea of a teacher using her phone or computer to put homework assignments up on her podcast. I could see myself in the future possibly recording my lessons and creating a daily podcast so that students who were absent or need to review the lesson can access them online.

I am enjoying expanding my podcast horizons. I think that the more we learn about them, the more I see their practical, educational benefits.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

New Information

I thought going into reading the handout on copy right I was aware of what was allowed and what things were not allowed. I was amazed though to find that there was a lot more things that were illegal than I knew. When I was going through school and doing a project, I would take pictures and things off the Internet all the time without even thinking about it. I started to learn once I got into the upper classes about siting sources and the importance of making sure you were documenting what information you used and that it was in your own words.

The things that I learned through the handout I believe I will use as a child life specialist because of wanting to use different handouts that I have found that will help a child and their family or maybe using a movie clip of some kind and showing the child a particular point that I wanted to be made. I now realized how careful I have to be when I am looking to share things with people. I want to make sure that I dont cross any lines and I think learning these standards will help that and will make more clear what can and cant be done.

I am looking forward to these next couple of projects because I believe they can be very helpful and that I will be able to find things that are specifically related to my topic of interest and things that I may actually use when I get to my profession. Finding videos will be something that I can use and learn from and then share with others. I think this social networking idea will be of great help when it does get linked to other people who are looking for the same information because there are not a lot of people who I know who are in the same field as me and it will be nice to have others to communicate with who are familiar with my profession.

New Discoveries

Copyright laws are SO specific nowadays that it is a dangerous for a future educator and for that fact an educator not to know about. I was shocked that there were so many specific guidelines to using information found through Internet, media, video, etc that were considered disobeying copyright laws. I wonder if because of the advancement in technology, that these laws are being enforced with a stronger hand. I know for a fact that many of my teachers has disobeyed copyright laws by using anything from video, music, pictures, and many more uses of technology without giving credit or resources at all.

The problem with copyright laws is that most of the time when they are being disobeyed it is out of being naive as opposed to down-right disobeying. So in this case, it is important to read all individual copyrights or disclosers so that we as educators are not taking advantage of another person's/business' work.

It almost comes down to the point that sharing information found on the Internet can be a copyright infringement without giving the specific website to that person. I can understand most of the laws, but I feel that if you give credit to the site, author, web-designer, etc. then it isn't disobeying copyright laws. All the specifics seem to be a little dramatic to me. But of course I am wrong...and learned something new.

The Wonderful world wide web

I once had a friend try to explain to me podcasts, and it didn't work very well. He downloaded a podcast to my itunes and ipod and I never listened to it because I never updated it and I rarely update my ipod. I had kind of given up on podcasts until this point, and to my surprise they can be utlilized in the classroom. I hope to understand them a little better after a proper tutorial, I feel like my knowledge of the Internet decreases daily, as I learn what's out there. I feel like it'll be hard to find quality podcasts because they seem to be created by your average Joe. I know there is probably quality stuff out there too, it's just a matter of finding it. I can't actually imagine myself using the rss feed either. Maybe once I have a classroom and a class website rather than going to the website and seeing nothing, I can just check it through the feeder. But for me that seems almost pointless, only because there aren't too many websites that I go to, so to check one to see if there are updates and then go to the other seems like an extra step. And if there isn't anything new on the website I check it doesn't save time to check one website over the other to see that nothing is new. Maybe in a few years there will be more sites that I'd be interested in checking out regularly so it will be of use than.
I feel like the copyright information is very valuable and its important for students to know, and know how to avoid plagiarism. However, it seems very easy for students teachers and schools alike to take information without realizing it's against the law. I really didn't know the copyright information on all those formats, so it was useful for me.

copyright and RSS

I definitly like the google reader. It is very helpful and saves a lot of time. Plus this way, I can see what is new on all the sites instead of having to go to each site, especially since I forget sometimes to check certain sites. I think the google reader can be very helpful as a teacher because it lets you get a bunch of news without having to waste time since teachers don't have a lot of it to spare. As far as del.icio.us goes, I also think this could be very helpful, especially with the amount of sites we have looked at so far in class. There are so many useful websites out there but it gets so overwhelming trying to remember which ones to look at and which ones are useful. It seems like del.icio.us will be a useful tool to help ease the task of looking at all the websites.

I learned a lot about copyright issues. I didn't really know much about it besides the basics such as don't plagerize. I found it extremely interesting that most of the time you can copy things as long as they are used for an educated purpose and are distributed fairly and in reason. I was caught off guard when I was reading about the ability to copy videos if the they aren't being offered at a fair price. This seems a little sketchy to me. Who is to say what a fair price is? Just because one person thinks it is fair, does not mean someone else does. That one is the one that seems the most flexible to me.

copyright and podcasts

To me, the purpose of copyright laws and regulations is simply to give credit where credit is due. If people always just do that, I don't really see the need to have specific rules about stuff. If you use something that isn't yours, just say whose it is. It's that simple.

We went over podcasts very fast, and I don't feel that I really understand what podcasts are and what the point of them is. For our project, how many podcasts are we supposed to find? Do we have to review them? So many questions . . .

As a side note: I feel very rushed in this class; there always seems to be so much stuff to do and barely any time to do it all.

CopyRights

The chart that we printed off is very useful for educators. I had no idea that certain things were illegal and some things I thought teachers couldnt do, we can! Educators need to be incredibly careful when incorporating technolgy into the classroom because many copyright rules can be broken. It becomes difficult for teachers, however, when certain materials are unavailable, or a teacher has a really great idea and no resources. We all want to incorporate as much technology as possible in our classrooms so that our students have fun while learning, but we also have to keep in mind the legal aspects. Personally, I need to brush up on these copyright rules so that I do not break any laws in the future. As technology progesses, however, the laws on copyrights may also become more strick as well.

Copywrite Information

I found this all to be very confusing. The table that we printed was almost contradictory in spots and also subjective. For example, under computer software it says that Librarians can make copies if the software is sold at an unfair price. How do we know what an unfair price is? Who gets to decide whether $20 is fair or not? Also, it says that poems that are less than 250 words can be copied but for those longer than 250 words you can only copy an exerpt. Why are shorter poems not given the same consideration as longer ones? Also, under the interenet it says that links to legitimate sites must be posted. How do we know what sites are legitimate?

It just seemed to me that there were a lot of holes and questions regarding this handout. Maybe I am just reading it wrong, but it looks as if a large portion of it is subjective.

Copyright and Ciber Ethics

I think that, obviously, copyrights are necessary and important to protect products and new technologies. Also, cyber bullying is a very dangerous thing that can affect numerous people and lead to serious ethical and moral problems. However, it is also important to note that people cannot be forced to protect themselves. I think that instead of demanding students or families to register or protect their computer using web-available commodities such as Net Nanny, people should be educated on the dangers of surfing the net. One of the main arguments in the article "The Concerned Educator's Guide to Saftey and Cyber Ethics" is that teachers stumble upon websites such as whitehouse.com that are pornographic and clearly not intended for classroom use. However, teachers should test websites for not only appropriateness, but also validity and content before they show them in the classroom. I think that by forcing students, families, and teachers to be policed by these cyber organizations that fight "crime" and "indecency," we are creating a boundary of distrust that shows lack of faith in students, parents, and teachers.

RSS

I am glad we learned about RSS today in class. I am also glad we set up our Google readers. I definately see the benefits of this internet feature. In the future, I predict that the RSS feed will be helpful when I become a teacher in order to receive the latest updates in teaching techniques and standards while saving time. Conducting daily searches can become very time consuming, especially for teachers whose days are very structured. It is important that teachers can access necessary information through the internet quickly and efficiently in order to conduct their classes smoothly.

The copyright laws are especially important for teachers yet can be a bit overwhelming. I think it is vital for teachers to always have a hard copy of the rules and regulations on hand in the classroom so that they are able to protect their work as well as their students. Plagerism and illegal copying is easy to do without even realizing you are breaking the law and can get really messy. I feel it is the teacher's responsibility to protect him or her self as well as the student's because otherwise the entire school can be punished.

Wiki Wiki Wiki

As our wiki projects come to a close, I have been reflecting back on what I've learned over the past week or so. I have to say that I found Wiki easy enough to use, but I did stumble across several coding errors that became very annoying as I tried to complete my projects. Also, some of the pictures that I tried to upload refused to appear on the screen.

I think wiki would be beneficial for me as a teacher to post a syllabus, calendar, or classroom announcements, but I would save Wiki for my upper level English classes. I do not think this is the best way to present a project, but it can definitely compliment a project. I feel like there are other websites that are more creative than wiki that allow changes in fonts, sizes, colors, and themes. They offer a website that is more visually appealing, but not many people can edit the page at a time.

I do wish we would have had a more interactive lesson while learning the features of Wiki. Watching the videos in class today about RSS and del.icio.us, for example, were helpful. It was easier to understand in simple language and have a visual to guide us. It is aggrivating at times that we cannot utilize some programs in class because we are not administrators. We just have to explore on our own!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

More Wiki

The more and more we talk about the benefits of Wiki, the more familiar and supportive I am becoming with the concepts. I like how technology has become such a beneficial tool in the classroom, but I don't want it to replace a lot of the concepts in the classroom already. I just know with the technology advancing so fast, some parents don't wish their kids to be involved on the internet all the time.

Not only is that an issue, but finding access to a computer all the time to do homework, blogs, wiki updates, and other uses can be difficult for some students who can't find the resources. A lot more time-budgeting and sharing may be needed when using technology in the classroom.

I however, enjoy learning about the newer uses of the internet and its benefits for students. Atleast I am becoming more proficient...

Wiki Projects

I really like the idea of being creative with the wiki spaces because they will make the space much more appealing to the reader. This, in schools especially, is important. If a page is boring and too simple, students and parents alike will most likely become disinterested in its content and pay little to no attention to it. However, if it is made to be more fun, colorful, and interesting, more attention and positive feedback will be received.

Also, I am happy that we were taught how to incorporate sound and visuals to the page. This will help make the lessons and the information on the wiki space much more appealing and interesting, helping incorporate numerous types of learning.

On a whole, I like the idea of this project becuase it is something that we, as teachers will be able to use in the future. It is practical in the classroom and is multifacitive, applicable to students, teachers, administrators, and parents.

Wiki Project

I thought going into this project it could be helpful and would in some way help me for what I am going to be doing in the future. However, I have found some good sites for kids, but not too many of them could be directed in my field of study because most are based around a subject in school like writing or language arts, which is important, but doesnt do too much for those young children who are going to be having an operation some time soon. The only ones that are useful are the art ones where a child could go and create an art project to aleviate some stress and express what he or she is really feeling with out having to use words.

It is also hard because this is a large project that has a lot of expectations and requirements and we didnt get any time in class to work on it. It is hard to fit everything into my schedule especially with homework and stuff from other classes and I was really looking forward to having some time in class to work on it and ask questions and get some feed back before I went and worked on it on my own and was expected to turn it in. I want to do a good job on my project, but things this big take time and I think we need to have more time to do it in class so we can work with people and bounce ideas off of people other than ourselves.

projects and class time

I was a little upset with class today. I came in thinking we would spend the majority of class working on the wiki project but instead we barely even mentioned it. I had questions I wanted to ask but never had the opportunity. I would have prefered spending most of the time working on our project and then spending Tuesday learning about blogging. I feel that if a project was assigned and it requires a lot of work, that we should have class time, especially since it is due on Tuesday. I know that I have a lot of other things going on over the weekend as well as a lot of other homework to be doing and so I don't have the time to spend hours working on this project. I'm sure other people are busy as well and so it might have been nice to work on it in class. One of my major questions was where to find the reviews for the different softwares. Generally there is a specific site to go to and yet I can't seem to find it. I wish we had time in class to ask questions and to work on it, especially since we are working with others to do it. It would have been nice to talk to them about it.

Classroom Website

I am glad we are learning about wikispaces because I would really like to create a website for my class in the future. I know some teachers right now that have websites and I think it is very useful for students. The teachers post homework, links to helpful sites, and other classroom relevant material. There are so many different things you can do with this technology. It is very versatile. I think one of the major problems that people have with personal websites is keeping them updated. It will be very important for me to keep the classroom website up-to-date and relevant. Otherwise, students will start to ignore it and they may see me as unorganized. It is very important to keep up the things that you start and the things you tell your students to rely on.

Wiki project

I have enjoyed learning about Wiki this week. Wiki was another form of technology that I was not aware of before this class. It seems to me that the options for creating your own personal Wiki are endless which is exciting. I am excited to learn more about Wiki this weekend with the completion of our project. I am glad we were introduced to the vastness of Wiki this week because as it seems to be growing exponetially all the time, it is so important as future teachers that we are familiar with this. I can definately see myself creating a Wiki homepage for my classroom.

As for the blogging, I am still unsure how I feel about the idea. I understand that along with Wiki, blogging is growing as well. However, I still feel that blogging for students can be dangerous because it can be so easily manipulated. I am sure in the future there is going to be much better protection and advancements for blogging.

more wiki

This week I've realized how little I actually do know about the Internet. I'm glad that I have an opportunity to become more savvy and knowledgeable about such sites and applications as the wiki. I really like how you can incorporate almost anything onto your wiki page so easily. They really have made it very user friendly. I think the usability of this type of page makes it an even better resource for students. Adding their thoughts or projects to a wiki page or something similar would be very easy for them I think, because students are always on the cutting edge of technology anyway. When I was reading about the uses for wiki I came across the idea of a wiki as a student portfolio and I really thought that was an interesting idea. This would allow students to write their initial thoughts, say about a book, then link key concepts or new terms into their page to help clarify for themselves and others. Then this type of project also allows for a follow up section and they can see how their thoughts or ideas changed and progressed. I'm still trying to figure out how to best impliment a wiki but as I learn more I think it could potentially be very useful, again only if it's used in the correct way.

Math Softwares

I think the second part of our Wiki project will be very benefitial. Especially for math, there are so many programs out there and I know for sure that I am not aware of half of them. I have only worked with a few softwares briefly, but I would like the opportunity to explore more of what they offer. A lot of people may think that calculators are the only technology needed for math and that is certainly not true. There are several softwares that can not only do computations and generate graphs, but they can also just make the material easier to understand. Espeically for the visual learner seeing a graph generated can help further the understanding of what a graph is.

Wiki Websites

As we were going through all the links and websites today in class, I was amazed at the amount of information that is available. These resources are valuable, and I can picture useing them effectively in my future classroom.

For my AP Lit class in high school, we used a lot of technology including blogger.com and blackboard.com. Blogger was used mainly to present facts about major projects we did, but I am not sure if that is the best way to present. I like the idea of using the Wiki page to present literature projects because it can be more organized on a webpage than it could be on a blog.

I think a personal blog would be useful while reading literature. Students could use blogger as a journal to response to their readings. At the same time, they could comment on the peer's responses as well.

Blackboard.com is one of my favorite resources because it was extremely effective in my AP class. Not only is is easily accessible, but it allows for the continuation of class discussions online. Students can post new topics and also add to existing topics. English people...check it out!

Questions About Project on Software

Do I have to download three different math software in order to do this project? I don't like the idea of crowding my harddrive with extra software. Are there any computer on campus (like here in Buck or at the library) that already have a bunch of different math software downloaded on them? Having too many different software on my laptop will make my laptop run slower, which I am not looking forward to. Or is there a way I can review these software without actually downloading them?

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

WIKI!

After going through all the English websites, I was amazed at all the links that were compiled. I found many, many useful links on a variety of literature topics. It was frustrating when some links didnt work, but they were out-numbered by those that did.

I have mixed feelings about Wiki pages in general. I think it would be a great tool as a teacher to post projects and have an easy, accessible website for students to visit.

I think I would mainly use the Wiki for student projects. This type of media would be great to present a semester long project, or a book analysis. It is easy to view while students are presenting, and the information will be there outside of class for other students and classes to view.

It may be slightly advanced for younger high school students, but then again, by the time we are teaching, it may be common knowledge for all our students.

=)

Monday, October 1, 2007

Websites

I am really thankful for this assignment because it has opened my eyes to many useful websites that will enhance my teaching and my students learning experience. It amazes me how many teaching tools are available on the internet. These websites, in addition to other technological teaching instruments, are so important for us, as future teachers, to be familiar with in order to increase our "arsenal" of teaching tools.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

The Wiki (or Weekly) Mess Up...

So...I went online to work on the wiki-space to find that all the work that then English students did was somehow over-written by the Spanish student works. Now that was weird...

So that is my frustration of the week when it comes to the wikipspace...not to mention the idea of every one having access to it...I just don't see how it is beneficial for a collaborative group of young adults to do one web-page works. I just feel that we could have learned how to change the web page but really wrote our analysis of other websites on our blog. I am just tired of my work being erased...oh well.

However, I did like navigating through those websites that were given to us. I can tell a lot better what is a more developed and scholarly website than a fun/mediocre one. That is all for now...

Research

After looking at all of these websites, I think that they are all great resources and tools for teachers to use. It is good for us to have these websites as part of our "toolbox" for when we become teachers. My only problem is that I don't know how to go about finding websites like these. When someone else tells me a website to go to, I can find it with no trouble and recognize how great of a site it is. However, when I have to go out on my own and find a useful and reliable website, I find myself having a lot of difficulties. I am wondering shares in my deficiency to conduct internet research or if anyone who finds such a task fairly easy would be willing and able to share some of their wisdom.

Websites

It is amazing to me how many websites there are for teachers, specifically math teachers. All of the sites from Professor Nillas's list that I visited seemed relevant and helpful and I know there are hundreds more out there. I came across several creative lesson ideas that incorporate technology into the classroom while efficiently presenting the material. There are so many things that I would have never thought of myself. That is why it is really great to have a means of sharing ideas across the world. I am also glad that teachers are willing to share their lessons, templates and activities, because I think it is a huge benefit for the students. The web is such a great resource for teachers and especially after looking at so many useful websites, I really look forward to using them mixed with my own ideas to optimize my future classroom.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

advertisment in tv shows

So I was watching Mythbusters on tv earlier today and noticed something interesting. As I was watching, I realized that the computers used on the show were Dell computers. At first I looked at them and just happened to recognize the laptop because it is the same on I own, which happens to be a Dell. After that I was looking a little more closely. They later showed a monitor that is also a Dell and finally they showed another shot of the Dell monitor but this time they actually showed the label on camera and it clearly read Dell. I just wonder if people really choice their product by the advertising on tv. I mean, if people were to continuously see a specific type of product on tv, would more people be inclined to purchase that product? I guess it is a new way of advertising instead of doing commercials.
is anyone else having problems writing on the wikispace...when i went to add to the page, it told me that whatever i wrote would overwrite what was already written...help?
I can't make up my mind about Wikispaces. Part of me really likes the accessibility of it and I feel that it is incredibly easy to navigate. The links are easy to create and manage and the format of the site overall is simple enough so any student, teacher, or family member can maneuver throughout the site with ease. However, it seems incredibly impersonal. The whole idea of communicating from teacher to student, student to student, or teacher to parent through electronic medium is a little hard for me to fully grasp or enjoy simply becuase it takes all of the conversation and personal exchange that is unattainable without face to face interaction. I have found that people are able to connect on a deeper level, establishing a base of trust between students, teachers, and parents. This relationship is very important to establish and maintain and I become more and more concerned with being able to create those links and relationships as, and again I see the benefits, we as teachers move toward electronic communication.

Friday, September 28, 2007

WikiSpaces

Coming into this class, the only time I had ever used a wikispace was to go to it and blog for one of my previous education classes. I had never used it as a home page for a class or done nearly as much work on it as we have so far this semester. I was also excited about getting to create my own and have things on it that relate to my subject area of interest, which some times doesnt happen in all education classes because I am almost always the only student who is not becoming a teacher and I often have to make the adjustments instead of having things changed to better suit me. Going to all of the website and playing games has been really fun and a nice change of pace from the work I have been doing in a lot of my other classes. However, I do feel very overwhelmed at times since I am the only person who is reviewing all of the sites of interest for my field, where every other group has at least two people. I am glad that I am able to do it on my own though because I havent had the problem of competing with other people to put my information onto the site. I think this project will allow me to see many sites that will help me in the future and they will be ones that I may even have kids go to and do some games on to help calm them down if they are getting very anxious about the operation and are in need of something fun. I am looking forward to this project and am hoping that there will be a lot that I learn from doing this since I am spending a good amount of time doing it and putting a lot of effort into looking at the sites and seeing what all they offer for kids to be doing.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wiki page

I was excited to start working with wikispaces and working with creating a website. I think it's a very useful skill to create a navigable website for your class. It is a good means of letting students who are absent know what they missed, by positing assignments for them. It can also be a great resource for the students, if you provide them with examples of good resources and websites that will help with research. I have noticed that it is becoming very common for teachers to provide their students with a class website. It is also more sustainable, considering most students can access the website therefore you don't have to print out handouts for them if you provide them electronically.

However I was a little frustrated while using the class website today. I know it's because everyone was trying to load things at the same time, but it seemed really inconvenient to create a project that is collaborative and independent. I was frustrated when I would save something and override something that someone in my group had just published. It seemed very counter productive to me. And as far as the project being collaborative, I feel like we divvied up the tasks and then split, that is not working collaboratively to me, it is quite the opposite. I think it is useful to create a page with reviewed websites that are relevant to my content area, but I feel like there are some better websites out there than the ones that I reviewed. I look forward to seeing the final product of this project because hopefully it will create a list of helpful and unhelpful websites.

Powerpoint

I also enjoyed doing this project. I spent hours working on it, but I felt a great sense of accomplishment when I was finally done. I learned to use a lot of new tools and this is definitely the best project I have done. I also liked this project because I can use it when I am a teacher. It is very applicable to a lesson I will teach. I think it will be a really good resource for my students. It is a good reference. I hope I can remember how to use all those tools the next time I have to make a presentation. I look forward to our next project.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

PowerPoint Project

I am really enjoying this project. I like the freedom that we have on choosing our own topic and how we want to present it. So far I am happy with my project and I hope that it is something that can actually be used in a classroom to help students with percentages. PowerPoint is a fun software in which I really like playing around. There are so many tools and features to work with, I always feel like I am coming across new ones. I love fact that you can add motion and sound to make presentations more interesting and keep the students attention. I can definitely see myself using PowerPoint in my future classroom.

Powerpoint Project

I really like this project because it is a fun, interactive, assignment that can be used later in our teaching. It will be a lot of work and sometimes I feel that an overuse of PowerPoint is common and should be avoided. But in this case, we are making PowerPoint the product of our knowledge and using them as a way to relay our knowledge to the students. This helps students because it is a break from the monotonous, mundane, scheduled lives that they live throughout their years in elementary and high school. Power points help, also, because they allow students to interact with the lesson on various levels. For example, access to the Internet is only a click away if a person hyperlinks Internet resources. Also, music, pictures, and other elements are available to be incorporated more efficiently into the lesson.

The Big Project

First of all...I like PowerPoint much better than Excel. I have more fun with composing a project that has to do with my content area. However, I feel that this is a HUGE project without that many guidelines and barely anytime. I just feel that the concept of doing an entire 50 minute presentation in such a short time is a hard task to complete. I also don't know if it is because every project I wish to do I have to research a lot of material so as dates are right, publications are correct, information about the books/plays/literary works are exact, etcetera. I just feel a little overwhelmed because it is such a big project and we are required to make it better than our best presentation. Which I do not know about anyone else, but my best project took me about two weeks to complete.

However, I do enjoy the online tutorials offered to give and refresh new ideas when it comes to PowerPoint, I just wish that we had more time in class to go over newer ways to enhance our projects. I have a difficult time straying away from linear/symmetric projects because I am kinda OCD about that. However, I am enjoying the concept of preparing a unique presentation.

Multimedia project

I am excited about our multimedia project because I think that I will definately be able to reuse it in my future classroom. I have never had to incorporate videos or animation in my presentations before so I am excited to learn and master a new skill. I am also excited to see what everyone else has been working on and to learn from everyone's ideas.

POWER POINT!

After being incredibly frustrated last week with Excel, I finally feel releaved to be working with powerpoint. I have made several detailed powerpoints in the past, and can honestly say that I feel more comfortable with PP than Excel. I love messing around with different features and discovering new tools. Powerpoint is more easy to navigate and more fun to use! This is a program that ANY teacher can use in the classroom. As an English teacher, I feel that I can make interesting and interactive presentations to my class instead of just a lecture. The use of audio and video will especially grab the attention and interest of students. I am excited to play around with this presentation and learn more about Powerpoint.

PowerPoint

I'm having a little bit of trouble gettting PowerPoint to do what I want it to do. I want my pictures and objects to be in very specific places, and the cursor only allows them to go in a very limited amount of places. In order for my visual effects to work correctly, I need my pictures and objects to be in the specific places. For now, I am just putting them as close as I can get them, but I feel like it is making my project less effective. Also, I feel like I am wasting a lot of time trying to get the pictures and objects in their correct positions rather than actually adding content to my slideshow.

My thoughts on the week

Last week I felt very overwhelemed. I felt like I was doing a project that didn't seem to have purpose for me and that was confusing for me. However, after completing the Excel project I did find that it could be very useful. I like the fact that there is a timeline template and I feel that it can be very useful in organizing a nice timeline. I feel like people voicing thier concerns about the work load helped a lot. I like that this project has a rubric for the grade so I can better organize my thoughts and I know what I need to include in my project. The projects seem very openended and I think that's what I find very overwhelming. I'm a person who likes direction and having all the expectations laid out on the table for me. However, I think that having an open ended project will make me think a little bit harder about what is appropriate and what works for a class. I do realize though that in a classroom setting I will have a more defined goal of the semester so I will have a purpose in making a document or project or assingment. As I continue in this class I think that I will learn useful skills that can one day be translated to the classroom, and I hope that I benefit from this experience, even if it is frustrating for me at times.

Powerpoint...

I feel that there is a lot about powerpoint that I have already learned, and at the same time I feel there are still things that I havent learned but could be helpful if I knew about. I feel as though the only things we have gone over so far are tools and things that I have done in the past and feel good about me doing on my own. When I was told that this project was supposed to be better than any other one I have put together, I was thinking that meant we were going to be shown some new ideas and tools that would help to make our projects really stand out and improved from other things in the past. I feel that watching the teacher tube videos have helped me to a point, but I think there is more that I could learn about that I would be able to use in my projects as well as in presentations I may be giving in the years to come. I would be interested in going deeper into the program of powerpoint and learning more about it, but I feel as though I cant do it on my own and need some more instruction to learn what others may know and I do not. I am hoping that through this project and other work for the class I will be able to find things that I can use to make my presentations better and more creative than just the regular slides with words and once in a while a clip art picture here and there.