Sunday, September 14, 2008

Kudos of Presentation Software

Even just reading the first few paragraphs of Chapter 10 bring up ideas and show that powerpoints, etc. are great tools for using in the classroom. They are creative ways to introduce new material or outline key ideas about a new topic. They can also generate TOUGHTFUL questions, encourage higher-level thinking, motivate students to participate, and stimulate questions and discussion among students. What more could you want. The fact that presentation software is so interactive is wonderful because it involves students more than a lecture or reading a chapter in a book.

Once again, I think that the activities that Hamilton describes are very helpful for beginning teachers. My favorite activity was the visual peotry described on page 142. It uses technology to make something sometimes seen as boring and redundant more fun and interactive. The ability to format text and add graphics helps make the work more visually appealing and more fun to present throughout the classroom.

In class through the past weeks, what has helped me the most and been most informative are the fact sheets about each processor. Many times, we dont have time to "play around" with technology, but with instructions to new functions on each helps us out. I do not think that I would be learning as much if we were not given time to actually experience this.

Presentations

Since middle school, I have been using Power Point presentations for my classes. Until I read this chapter, however, I did not realize the "intuitive nature and versatility of the software application" (125). I never realized you could create so many different projects with Power Point. I basically always thought of Power Point as a slide show generator, but it is much more.

During classes, I would usually get angry when my classmates would create slide shows for discussion but use a lot of text on them. This chapter really enforced the idea of "presentations with only visuals force students to practice inferential skills as they wrestle to understand how what they see relates to what they are learning" (126). Power Point also allows you to creatively reach students with different learning styles. As stated, "the appropriate use for presentation software in a school is limited only by a teacher's creativity" (126).

I really enjoyed all the projects that this book gave such as bookmarks, cards for holidays, photo albums and trading cards. I look forward to implementing some of these ideas into my project for this section of the course, and learning all the tricks of Power Point. I learned a lot about Excel already, and I look forward to enhancing my learning on Power Point.

Presentation Software

I started using PowerPoint when I was in middle school, but I still don't think I am proficient in all of its uses. Just the other day I made a photo essay for my teaching science education course, and we had the option to add music to the picture slide show. I had completely forgotten how to implement this skill, so my presentation was slightly lacking. I look forward to learning about the basic elements of PowerPoint and how I can incorporate them into my classroom. I thought the book had a lot of neat ideas about how to use presentation software. I liked the section on effective instructional slide shows which lays out the basics of a good slide show because I think that some teachers do not know the proper ways to present information on presentation software and yet, they still use the software. This section is also helpful to me as I think about using presentation software in my classroom. I think it is important to remember that the PowerPoint should enhance the subject matter being taught and successfully produce learning. If used incorrectly the presentation could distract students from gaining an understanding of the subject matter or not produce the best option for a teaching method. I love the idea of having parents view their students work in some way or another. I think this is a great way to encourage parents to get involved with their students learning by talking about the projects and to make students feel proud of their accomplishments. I liked many of the presentation software ideas in the book, such as the postcards, trading cards, dictionaries, and visual poetry. I think these ideas in particular are excellent ways to get students thinking in different ways and to encourage the sharing of students ideas/projects.

I have learned a lot in this class so far, and I am eager to learn more. I enjoyed the unit on spreadsheets, and I am excited to learn more about PowerPoint and its uses.