Wednesday, December 2, 2009


This is an image of the word bye written in white on a black background with a small smiley face above the y I have to say goodbye for now to a great group of classmates. I have enjoyed this semester with you all. I wish all of you the very best as you continue to pursue your degrees and future careers. I hope to stay in touch with many of you and maybe see you again in other classes. Thanks to everyone that I worked with on projects! Major, Bailey, Emily, and Angie, I really enjoyed getting to know you, and working with you on the projects was fun. Each of you are great people and will make great teachers. Thanks to Ms. Averitt for trying your best to make sure the stress level stayed as low as possible. There were a lot of projects to do, but you were always encouraging and tried to make sure that we weren't too stressed out. I really appreciate that. Best of luck to you! Thank you all again for a great semester! :)


This is an image of an animated computer in front of an orange background with the words Technology in the Classroom above it in purple.
I have learned many technological tools used in education through this class, and most importantly, I have learned the importance of technology in the classroom. I learned about class blogs, which is something that I hope to use in my classroom. Google docs and iGoogle were things that I thought may be very useful to me as well. I found that my PLN is something that I can keep up with and use a lot in the future. iTunes U is an excellent resource and one that I plan on using with my future students. I learned about the usefulness of Excel, podcasts, videocasts, Skype, and Smartboards. I don't think there is anything that was left out that I wanted to learn about. We covered a lot of things this semester. I think that the videocast was something that I will probably not do in my classroom, but I think that videocasts and podcasts are good resources for research and curiosity. The thing that excited me the most was my introduction to blogging because it really opened my eyes to the possibilities of connecting students to the world and all of the other many uses of class blogs.

Although I didn't find anything in the class too challenging, some of the material was interesting to learn about because it affects me as a future teacher. I know that the things I learned in the class are things that I need to know to help my students succeed. Sometimes, I found a lot of down time in class. I know that while some class members worked on their projects, I had little to do because mine were finished. I think that this will not be a problem next semester, though, because the class will be online mostly and students can work at their own pace. I don't think I would change this course because the material is helpful and useful to future teachers. I think that while I am not completely technologically literate, I am more than I was at the beginning of the semester. Also, I have the resources to keep myself updated thanks to this class. For the sake of myself and more importantly, my future students, I need to keep up with my PLN and developments in educational technology. I know that technological skills are becoming more and more important, and I am glad that I learned to be more open minded about technology through this class.

Monday, November 23, 2009

7 Brilliant Things Teachers Do With Technology and New Classroom Rules

This is an image of a teacher writing on a blackboard under the heading Classroom Rules while a paper airplane is headed in the direction of the blackboard.
The two most important lists, to me, were Doug Johnson's 7 Brilliant Things Teachers Do With Technology and New Classroom Rules by Education Innovation. I picked these because I found them interesting. I liked the praise that Doug Johnson gave in his list. He commended teachers' good use of technology in the classroom, and explained his reasons. The things that he listed were ones that I need to be aware of and use in my own classroom in the future. I enjoyed the New Classroom Rules list because the technology twist on the traditional rules caught my attention and made me think about the future of education and the growing role of technology in, and out, of the classroom.

In Doug Johnson's list of brilliant things teachers do with technology, he listed many things that I need to do in my own future classroom. He said, "Technology is an amplifier of good abilities," which is very true. He also talked about the importance of getting students in touch with the world, which is a major advantage of incorporating technology in the classroom. Doug Johnson had many things to offer in his list of 7 Brilliant Things Teachers Do With Technology. In the New Classroom Rules list, I found several great modern twists to the traditional classroom rules. I noticed that a lot of the rules included a phrase about sharing information and ideas with others, through the use of technology in some way. I thought that this was a great representation of the collaboration that needs to take place more in classrooms today, especially with the technology movement. Teachers need to learn to think with these added phrases to the old rules, for the students' sake. These new rules really triggered my thoughts about the upcoming years and the endless possibilities that lay ahead. Both of these lists were helpful to me, and proved even more that technology is going to play a vital role in the success of students, and therefore, my success as a teacher.

Monday, November 16, 2009

At The Teacher's Desk

This is an image of a gray and blue globe surrounded by computers and papers are flowing from the globe to each computer to represent networking though computers
The blog, At The Teacher's Desk, is one that I find to be very helpful. There are many experienced professionals that collaborate to make this blog a great, useful resource for educators. This blog is a part of my Personal Learning Network, and it is one that I will go to for many future references, I am sure. I have found several posts that were interesting to me and could be helpful to me as a future teachers. I like the post by Mr. Chamberlain, Teachers Need to Become Social Networking Experts. It talked about the importance of teachers connecting themselves to other teaches, and gave a great example about him asking for help on Twitter for finding games for students. He received a ton of suggestions from people that he didn't even know. This shows that we never know what can come out of trying something different. Another post that I found helpful was Jarrod Lamshed's Using Technology for Effective Communication . In this post, he explained how social communities such as Twitter and Facebook, as well as using a cell phone, can be good means of communicating with parents, if the parents are willing to check these things regularly as well.

I found an entertaining post that really caught my attention and made me think; it is called Pencils and Crayons to be Banned in Schools . The post sounded like an article from a newspaper, and it was discussing children's improper use of pencils by poking each other with them and sharpening them while they could be working. There was also the mention of colored pencils and how they stimulate creativity that is distracting in the classroom. At the end, the post said that the ball point pen is gaining popularity too and posed the question of what schools will do to handle that. It was obviously a joke, but it does grab your attention and make you think. Another good post, to me, was Mr. McClung's, Why I Blog. He discussed his reasons for blogging. He mentioned learning and sharing ideas with other teachers, and that is one point that makes me want to have my own classroom blog when I am a teacher. He also discussed criticism he receives for incorporating technology in his classroom, which is good for people to see and know that it is not always easy to introduce and try something new but it is worth the risk. There are several posts similar to the Google Wave post that explain and promote technological tools in educations. I find these helpful and ones that I need to pay close attention to in order to stay updated on new tools that will benefit my students and myself and allow me to incorporate technology into my classroom. I think that a collaborative professional blog, such as this one, At the Teacher's Desk, serves as a great resource for educators. More people contributing means that more ideas, suggestions, experience stories, and feedback are available, which are all tools in themselves.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Michael Wesch- Toward A New Future Of Whatever

This is a picture of Michael Wesch in a blue shirt and he seems to be standing with his back against the edge of a building with many trees in the background.
After watching Michael Wesch's video, I felt that he was summing up my generation and my daily life. Too often I see the people with the "Whatever, I don't care" attitude as well as those with the "Whatever, I do what I want" attitude. These are both selfish ways of thinking and these attitudes lead to lifestyles of narcissism and no compassion for others. I think that people today are focused on themselves, their own goals, their own lives, and getting ahead, instead of helping others achieve their goals and helping others with their lives. We are seeing fragmentation from this type of self- centered lifestyle. Because of text messaging cell phones and computers, there is less and less human interaction, which people are enjoying because it gives them more time to focus on themselves. However, Michael Wesch does make a good point by saying that even though there is less face to face real conversations, people reveal their most private thoughts and feelings on the internet through communities like YouTube. Through these personal expressions, people are learning more and more about themselves and not just about each other.

Though I do not personally like the fact that media interaction is replacing person-to-person conversations, I think that good things can come from these media communities. I agree with Mr. Wesch that it does allow for collaboration. Because of instant access to other people and media resources, we are able to share more with a large audience easily and learn more from a variety of people. I think that it is great to be connected with many other people and work with them. I really like the free hugs video as well as the hand messages video because I love to see many people working together to send a powerful message. We need more people that are willing to try to make a difference. And I realize that would not be possible without those social communities created on the internet. I also thought it was a great point about how we learn more about ourselves through our interactions with others. Those YouTube videos were perfect examples of that. This talk made me realize that I am part of a selfish generation. However, that does not mean that I have to be like that. Change always starts small, and it looks like some people are already doing their part to send a call to action, like those on the hand messages video. One of the main reasons I want to be a teacher is to help others, and I hope that by doing that, I will become more about community and less about self. I want to have the future "Whatever" attitude that Michael Wesch discussed: "I'll do Whatever it takes by whatever means necessary."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Why Post Students' Work on the Internet?

After watching the PS 22 Chorus Landslide video, I was so moved. I think that it is important for children, like these, to be able to share their work, their thoughts, their feelings, with whomever will listen. I think that it is empowering to students and gives them confidence. They can share their work with others and see how it affects others, and it allows them to get feedback through comments. In these children's case, they received an invitation to do the song again at Fleetwood Mack's show in Madison Square Garden, which would not have happened if their video had not been posted on the internet. I also think that students need to share information with others as a part of being an active member of the world in which they live. They receive information from the internet all the time, so posting their work to their blogs, and sharing it in other ways, allows them to give back. These reasons I just listed are why I want to have my future students do blogs.

This is just one example of why students should share their work, by posting a YouTube video and getting a major response from it. There are a few other reasons that students should share their work on the internet and connect themselves with the world. They can share their work through blogs, just like Mrs. Goerend's class does. This allows students to share stories and thoughts with a vast audience. The comments they receive about their posts can be used as feedback for praise or for improvement, both are good. Also, when students connect with other students through programs such as Facebook, they can share ideas, information, and advice. They can support each other, help each other in problem areas, and share stories that will help each other get through similar situations. They can connect with other students outside of their area and learn from them as well to get a very different point of view from their own. Another reason why students should share their work on the internet is because they can help others. Students are always looking to the internet as a resource of information. Posting their own work gives them the opportunity to help other people or make other people think. I think that some students can do this through their blog posts or by posting a video on YouTube. One example that I have encountered that really made me think was the video of A Vision of Students Today. I considered my own college experience and how things could be better, and I think that most people that watch that video have to be stimulated to think about college classes. Another video that moved me was the video that Mr. Chamberlain's class did, Dear Kaia, because those students took the time to make a little girl and her dad happy by encouraging her photography and his "find the beauty in everything" attitude. I thought that it was so nice for them to do this, and I am sure that it helped Kaia and her dad by supporting them. So you can see, it is important for students to post their work to their blogs, or in other ways. It gives them a chance to get connected with the rest of the world, which helps them learn more and have a better chance for success.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Comments4Kids 3

This week, I visited and commented on Kasey's blog post. She was assigned to write a letter to Mr. Goerend's class. Her letter was about her school's homecoming week. She talked about how she enjoyed the parade and dressing up like a pirate. She said that her team beat the Hawks, just as they had the previous year. She reminded me of how much I enjoyed homecoming in school, which I told her in my comment. I enjoyed reading Kasey's post.