Thursday, December 1, 2011

C4T #2

I read We Didn't Have [X] when I was a kid. It was talking about how people are not open to the idea of changing technology. The old saying "I walked to school barefoot in the snow every day both ways and I turned out OK"has turned into "I didn't have computers when I was in school and I turned out OK." They may turn out OK, but technology in the world is going to change whether we change it in schools or not. Why not go ahead and teach our students how to use technology to benefit them before they get out in the real world? There is no reason that we shouldn't. It's definitely not going to hurt them if we teach them a little about technology.
The next post I read was Things that AREN'T on the bubble tests. This post discusses the things such as honesty, self-discipline, and reliability that are not taught in schools. We focus so much on "Bubble tests" such as SATs, ACTs, and others so we only teach the burp-back facts that are needed to score high on these tests and we forget about the other things such as motivation. Yes, you need the burp-back facts to make it through high school, but the other things are important in college and the career field.
Pencil test

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Blog Assignment 14

Jose Picardo's list of resources for teachers is very helpful. I had never heard of over half of these websites. This could save me a lot of time when I get into the teaching field. I will definitely add this list to my favorites page so I can refer back to it often.
I love his tips for using technology in the classroom.
Using streaming video is a great way to help kids learn. They get tired of just hearing their teacher repeat the same things over and over. But you can find all kinds of videos to teach them.
The same goes for music. I know elementary kids love learning through music. When I did my observation, the teacher played cute little Alabama history songs. When I was in elementary school, we used the Shirley Method for English. I sang those songs all through high school to help me label sentences.
Teleconferencing tools would be great to help the kids see what other classrooms are doing. We could get ideas from them and maybe share some of our ideas to help them out. Or we could use Skype to do interviews with people who could help us with a certain subject area. It would be much more convenient for everyone than them having to come into the school.
Making your own exercises for the students is also a great idea. Like Picardo says, the teacher knows the students strengths and weaknesses better than anyone else. The teacher can make different activities to help certain students with weaknesses in different areas.
Using the SmartBoard effectively is definitely something that all teachers need to do. When I was in high school, we were just getting them and our teachers barely used them if the used them at all. Now, going back to do my observation, the teachers use them all the time and the students really enjoy it. It keeps them more focused and entertained then just writing notes on a chalk board.
Podcasts are a fun way to keep kids involved. We watched different videos throughout the class of students doing podcasts in their classroom and they really seemed to enjoy it. We also did a podcast ourselves and I enjoyed doing it.
Creating a class blog is a great way to work on writing skills. It allows students to be creative. It also helps keep students and parents informed. I have never created a wiki, but I'm sure it is very useful in the classroom as well. I will try it out on day to see if I would like to use it in my classroom.
Using social networks is another option for keeping students and parents involved, although teachers have to be very careful with them. They do not need to use their personal social networking page as a school network page, too. I will probably create a Facebook page specifically for my classroom.
Using internet tools is again something that I have never tried, but I'm sure it would help students and be easy for them to use. I will research this more and try it out.
Using the gadgets that the students already use daily is probably the most effective thing to do. They don't have to worry about getting into the habit of checking something new daily. They already know how to use these things and obviously enjoy using them or they wouldn't be using them often.

Final Report on PLN

I have thoroughly enjoyed using my PLN this semester and will continue to update and use it for the remainder of my school career and when I get out of school. It is very useful and saves a lot of time. I am so glad that I was introduced to a PLN.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

C4K November Comments

Mrs. Yollis' class has a great blog! I hope to have this in my classroom one day. She uses her blog to help her students' writing skills and grammar. She encourages family members of the students to view the class blog and make comments. It is really amazing how many visitors she has on her class blog, so much more than our EDM class blog has. I could learn a lot about blogging from her class blog. I really enjoyed exploring her blog.
I really enjoyed reading the Halloween stories that the kids in Mrs. Yolis' class wrote. I had the pleasure of reading Behyan's story called "Crazy Halloween Day". Behyan's has a very good imagination and is a great writer. Her story was very entertaining and creative.
For my last C4K, I was assigned to Sela in Room 13 Point England School Auckland, New Zealand. She wrote a story about being an astronaut and saving the world from all the "space junk". She also has an imaginary planet call Pizza Planet. She also has a very good imagination and obviously has an interest for outer space.

cartoon pilgram children

Blog Assignment 13

I had never heard of Wolfram Alpha until this blog post was assigned. I had never heard of Google Squared either, but did not get to use it because there was an error every time I tried it. 22.88% of China's population equals the United States' population. 89.6% of China's population equals India's population. I think Wolfram Alpha would be very useful in the classroom. Children are always wondering random facts, so when one of those comes up in class all I would have to do it bring up Wolfram Alpha.
Wolfram Alpha

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Blog Assignment 12

I really had to think hard and do some searching to find an assignment that should have been given to us, but wasn't. I was beginning to think there wasn't anything else to add to go along with this class, but I finally found something pretty interesting.
Go to Create your own Prezi on anything you would like. Make it interesting and have fun! Here is the link to my Prezi. When it comes up, press the right arrow button until the end of the presentation.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Progress Report on Final Project

I guess you could say that our final project is coming along. We are still coming up with ideas to do this project on. Hopefully we will get the ball rolling faster now that it's coming up sooner. I think we will come up with a great project.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Additional Post 1

I did miss the metaphor in Blog Assignment 11. I usually understand metaphors and sarcasm, and use them quite often myself. I guess I was distracted when I read the post or was having an off day. We all have those sometimes, right? I think we use metaphors to keep things interesting and make people think. That's why I use them anyway.

Blog Assignment 11

In the video "Little Kids...Big Potential" there were first graders blogging and using the same things we are in EDM310. They posted a blog regularly, which they say helped them with the writing. They used Skype to communicate with other classrooms and professionals. They even found ways to use their Nintendo DS's. I think their teacher is doing a great job with them and I hope I can do this with my students in a few years. These things help students in more ways than just learning how to use a computer.
Mrs. Cassidy had some great points in her interview. One of my questions about blogging in an elementary classroom was how to protect them and keep them from seeing things that they shouldn't see. Obviously, teaching them not to use their last name, pictures, address, or phone number on the internet is the best way to protect them, but it is so easy for them to get to pages that are inappropriate, whether it is on purpose or by accident. Having links on the class page is a great idea so they will know what pages they can go to for sure. Another thing I have thought about is, when will I have time to get my students to post a blog regularly. I had never thought about doing it during reading sections. I really enjoyed watching this interview. I got a lot of great information! And I loved seeing the snow in her backyard. I would love to have that here every other year or so!
Little Kids..Big Potential

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

C4K Summary Post 2

These kids amaze me with what they post on their blogs. They have some great ideas and do some wonderful research. One of the kids I got assigned to researched their favorite animal and posted about it. One made a post about their class elections for student council. They had some great pictures and you could tell that they had great presentations. I really loved commenting on these kids blogs and seeing what they have to say.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Blog Assignment 10

Do You Teach or Educate?
This video really made me think. I have always said "I want to be a teacher", but after watching this video, I want to be an educator. A teacher only passes along information or facts, which is great. We need people to pass along facts to our children. But an educator not only teaches, but is someone to look up to. They are mentors and good role models. They are friends to their students. I have had both teachers and educators throughout school, and I definitely learned more from my educators. I will strive to be the best educator I can be.
Don't Let Them Take the Pencils Home
You wouldn't think that anyone would see a problem with students taking pencils home. This one teacher says that there is a study that proves that students who take the pencils home make lower scores on the standardized tests. Tom questions this research and recognized it as a problem, but he actually did something about it. He came up with projects for the students to do at home. I think we should all be problem solvers like him. It is easy to say "hey, there's a problem" but we need to work hard to fix these problems. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

C4T Summary Post 3

I got assigned to Teacher Tom's blog for this month's assignment. He works with pre-school kids.  His first post that I read was titled "It's Not My School, It's Your School". This talks about his clean up method. He, like most teachers, gets his students to help him clean up after activities done in class, but he makes it fun. He sings a clean up song while beating a drum. He doesn't have to let the kids know that it is clean up time, they just go into action when he starts beating the drum. We all know that if you tell a child "Put the book on the shelf", you are more than likely going to have to repeat yourself several times to get the desired reaction. However, if you say something informal like "The books go on the shelf", you will get a better reaction. I love his clean up method and will use something similar in my classroom and at home when I have children.
His second post that I read was titled "The Trick to Being a Dog". This post was talking about imagination. Kids can crawl around and act like a dog, in their mind, they area dog, but all we adults can see is a child crawling around on their hands and knees. It is really a shame that we can't be who we truly are because we are afraid of what other people with think and other people judge so much. It would be nice if we could go back to the days that nobody judged you for what you did, and if they did, you didn't care what they thought.

kids and dogs

Monday, October 17, 2011

Blog Assignment 9

At the Teacher's Desk (08-09)
This is a great blog post. It really helped me get a look at what to expect my first year of teaching on my own. Teachers definitely need to realize that the classroom is not centered around them. It is not about how they are doing as a teacher, but about how well the students are learning the material. If the students are not getting the material, then you as a teacher need to change your plans and style rather than trying to drive the information into the students using the same old method that obviously doesn't work for you class. Teachers also have to be lifetime learners. Technology and curriculum is always changing. A lot of teachers are teaching their students the wrong information because they are not up to date on the changes in new textbooks or curriculum.
At the Teacher's Desk (10-11)
There are some great tips in this blog post. Especially about standing out among your fellow teachers and staff. Instead of being the teacher that doesn't want to embrace new ideas, you need to be a teacher that will think about what is best for the student, not what you feel like doing or what will be easier for you to do. Teachers also need to stay focused on the students and what they need instead of trying to impress and "fit in" with other teachers and administration. Teaching is not about making friends, it is about helping students and giving them the education and attention that they deserve.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Blog Assignment 8

This is How We Dream
I have dreamed about many different things, but I can honestly say that I have never dreamed about the kinds of technology that we have today. Technology allows us to do many wonderful things. We can talk to someone half way around the world instantly. We can talk to anyone, anytime we want to, no matter where we are. We can research anything and everything at any time without having to open a book. It is really amazing what we can come up with when we dream.
Blog Post #12
I think Carly's post was excellent! You can tell she has a lot of creativity and she has a passion for literature. She will make a great teacher! I don't think she could have gotten any closer to what Dr. Miller hoped for writing with multi-media. It is obvious that she put a lot of time and effort into this post. I really enjoyed reading it and watching the videos.
EDM 310 is Different
I really enjoyed watching The Chipper Series. It was a great way to show people that you can't always have things your way, and you definitely can't be lazy in college or when you start your career. The Chipper series also makes a great point about procrastination. Procrastination gets you no where. If you procrastinate in school, you will make bad grades. If you procrastinate when you get a job, you will get fired for not meeting deadlines. The best thing to do is to go ahead and get started on it as soon as you get the assignment so it will be done to the best of your ability instead of being thrown together at the last minute. 
EDM 310 for dummies was a fun way to show how stressful this class can be if you don't know what you are doing, but there is help. if you are not technologically literate, there is a book to help complete this course that explains everything--Blogger, Twitter, class syllabus, YouTube, and anything else having to do with EDM310. It obviously helped the girls in the video, so it has to be worth a try. 

Learn to Change, Change to Learn
This video makes some great points. One woman pretty much asks why is it that e-mailing, instant messaging, and text messaging are banned from schools when they are the main ways people, especially teenagers, communicate. We have to change our classrooms in order for students to learn more efficiently. Now, students are learning more through technology. Students need to learn how to find information, validate it, synthesize it, and problem solve with it instead of memorizing facts. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Blog Assignment 7

My first thought when I saw that I had to watch an hour long lecture was "This is going to be so boring". But I was very wrong. Randy Pausch's lecture was amazing--very inspiring. He talked about his childhood dreams and how important they are. As teachers, we have to encourage students to have childhood dreams and work hard to accomplish those dreams. He also points out that with every goal comes a challenge. But the challenges are not there to stop us from accomplishing our dreams, they are there to let us prove how badly we want our dreams to come true and work hard for what we want. So many kids now are just given everything they want without having to work for it, then when they get our in the real world, they don't know how to work for what they need or want and fail. We need to teach them at an early age to work for what they want.
It is very clear that Randy has a passion for teaching! He knows how to keep students motivated to learn. Learning is very important, but you also have to make it fun to get kids motivated to actually do it. I know I learn a lot more when the lesson is fun and interesting!

C4T 2

My teacher that I was assigned to was Travis Allen. The name of his blog is "The Life of a 21st Century". One of his posts was about the iSchool Initiative's "Donate to Educate" Program. This program allows people to donate their mobile devices or money and they will send it to a classroom in need. In his second post, he talks about Mark Zuckerburg possibly being being the new Bill Gates. He says that one day applications on mobile devices will not be needed. I personally agree with this. One day, all applications are going to be combined into one social networking system. Think about how popular MySpace and Yahoo Messenger was a few years ago. Then Facebook came along and offered much more than the two of them combined could. Now, Facebook is used for everything -- email, instant messaging, sharing pictures and music.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

PLN Progress

I have created my PLN, but I am still getting the hand of everything and figuring out what I want on it and how it works. I think once I get it set up and figured out, I am going to love it! It makes things a lot easier having all of my bookmarks on that one page. I can't wait to learn more about it!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

C4K #1 Summary Post

I have really enjoyed reading these students' posts and commenting back on them. They have some great ideas and interesting topics. It gave me a great look ahead to what my classroom students could be doing in a few years. I think it is a great idea to have a classroom blog, even for elementary students. They have great ideas and want to speak out and be heard. What better way to get their voice heard?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Blog Assignment 6

The Networked Student
This video is a great diagram of how technology can help students. I think it is amazing how many different opportunities are offered for learning through the internet. Many people are concerned that if students start learning more through the internet then we won't need teachers. I strongly disagree with this. Teachers will always be needed to motivate students and lead them in the right direction. Also, the internet cannot explain things where everyone can understand it. Some people are hands-on learners and have to have someone to show them what to do. Technology is very helpful for the most part, but we still need people to help us out too. 
Personal Learning Environment
This is so cool! I love how everything is right there withing one click of the mouse! It is a great way to stay organized and connected. This video also gave me some great ideas for my PLN. I cannot wait to finish mine up and see how it turns out. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Blog Assignment 5

Scott McLeod
Scott McLeod is widely recognized as one of the nation's leading academic experts on K-12 technology leadership issues. I love his sarcasm in his post Don't teach your kids this stuff. Please?. I think the increase of technology in schools is a wonderful thing, but of course you do have to teach the students how to "safely" use the technology. Teach them not to add people on Facebook or Twitter that they do not know and the risks of cyberbullying, sexting, and online dating. But if we "overprotect" our kids from the negatives of the internet and other technology, they won't experience the positives. If we let the negatives hold them back, they will be so far behind when they get out into the real world and will have a hard time reaching success.
Travis Allen
I think that the iSchool initiative is a great idea! Like Travis said in his video, it saves both the school and the student a lot of money and it helps keep parents and students involved. With the iSchool, the parent or student can contact the teacher at any time, and vice versa. The students always have access to their homework assignments and it is already neatly organized for them. I think it would be great if this program could get into every school across the United States. I would love to have it in my classroom as a teacher because it would save me a lot of time and trouble.
Virtual Choir
This video of 185 people who performed Lux Aurmque is amazing, especially after you think about the fact that these performers have never met or performed together. They all did this from their computer at home. 
This left me speechless after watching it. Anyone out there who does not appreciate technology and realize how wonderful it can be needs to watch this video. It would change anyone's view on technology.

Teaching in the 21st Century
Roberts points out in this video that teaching in the 21st century is more than just academics. He is saying that we have to be a good role model and prepare them for the real world. Teachers are a big part of their students' lives. They are not just educators, but students look up to them and want to be like them when they grow up. We also have to teach them to be more creative. Creativity is definitely lacking in schools now, and I think a great way to bring it back is by blogging, tweeting, and facebooking. I know this class has already brought a lot of hidden creativity out of me. 

My Sentence Video

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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Blog Assignment 4

I think the podcast is a great thing to bring into a classroom. It is an excellent way to keep the parents involved and let them know what is going on in their child's classroom. It is also a great way to keep students caught up on their work if they have to miss school for a few days because of an illness. Like the post 100 Ways to Use Your iPod to Learn and Study Better says, podcasts are great for studying on the run. I have always wanted to study while driving down the road without putting the lives of myself and everyone else on the road at risk, and now I can!! Podcasting is also a great activity for students to do because it helps keep their creativity level up. Like the Langwitches Blog says, the kids are curious as to how they can change their tone, pitches, volume, speed, and many other things with their voice to make their podcast more entertaining. I will definitely be using podcasts in my classroom from time to time when I start teaching.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Project #3

Bill Ferriter is the teacher that I got assigned to for this project. In this blog, he talked about the importance of Twitter hash tags for teachers.  Hash tags on Twitter make it really easy for anyone to search for something. It can save teachers and students a lot of time by having hash tags assigned for their classes. I think it would be great if all teachers used Twitter for their classes, whether it's elementary school, middle school, high school, or college. 

In his second post he talks about the benefits of formative assessment.  Formative assessment is "timely feedback gathered and reviewed during the course of a learning experience that serves to 'inform' both teachers AND students and allows for the 'formation' of new learning plans". It sounds like a great plan, but there is a big problem--it is extremely time consuming. If schools really want formative assessment to work, the building principals have to be willing to help. They have to be willing to take out some curriculum that is not really needed. With formative assessment, the units take longer to cover, therefore the teachers do not have enough time to cover all the required curriculum throughout the school year. Also, the teachers need smaller classes so they will have more time to help and work with the students one on one, so the school systems have to be willing to hire more teachers in order to make smaller classes. 

Blog Assignment 3

It's Not About the Technology
Kelly Hines points out in her post that teachers have to be perpetual learners. Technology and trends are constantly changing and kids adapt to those changes just as fast as they happen. If we, as teachers, want to teach them effectively, we have to adapt to those changes too. Children will learn better if the teaching style is up-to-date. One of the newest pieces of technology in classrooms is the SmartBoard. It is not the SmartBoard that is teaching the students though. It is the way the teacher uses the SmartBoard to teach.
Is It Okay to be a Technologically Illiterate Teacher?
I completely agree with this post. If you are not technologically literate, you will probably not be successful, no matter what your profession is. Every job now has something to do with technology. We should be teaching our students about and through technology at an early age. I would definitely say that it's NOT okay for a teacher, or anyone for that matter, to be technology illiterate.
Gary's Social Media Count
This media count shows just how much technology is used. Just about every one in this day and time has a Facebook or Twitter account. I think Facebook and Twitter are great ways for posting assignments and reminders to students and/or parents.
A Vision of Students Today
This video makes an excellent point. Technology can be a good thing because it allows us to do many beneficial things. Take blogging for an example. If it wasn't for technology, we wouldn't be able to communicate and get opinions and ideas from other people across the world, or county for that matter, very easily. But the downside of technology is that people use it to "goof off" too much. Like the people in the video that said they bring their computer to class, but don't do school work on it while they are in class. Others are browsing Facebook or talking on the phone when they could and should be doing homework and studying. 

Project #5

Friday, September 2, 2011

Blog Assignment 2

Did You Know?
I found the information on this video was very interesting. This video shows us just how important it is to be technologically literate. The top ten in-demand jobs in 2010 did not even exist in 2004. The amount of technical information is doubling every year. So, the students that are starting a four year technical degree will have half outdated information by their third year of study. 
Technology can also harm us if we use it too much though. The 25% of India's population with the highest IQ's is greater than the total population in the United States. What does that say about our education in the United States? Or is it just because children and teenagers spend too much time "playing" with technology instead of using it to benefit them?
Mr. Winkle Wakes
Mr. Winkle is an old man who is gloomy about all the new machines and technology that he missed over the period of his hundred-year nap. This video points out that anything can be taught over a computer and students do need to learn about technology because it is increasing day by day. We, as educators, should teach our kids the old-fashioned way -- by lecturing and giving paper work -- but we should also teach our kids about the technology that is out there and how it can help them. 
Ken Robinson
Ken Robinson points out in his video that education kills creativity. He says that kids are creative because they are not afraid of being wrong. As we educate them over the years, they learn more and more and are afraid of being wrong so they do not say what they think. How can we be creative if we are scared to try something new? He tells a story of a girl who was always fidgeting in class and the teachers thought that something was wrong with her and she needed medicine. Her parents took her to the doctor and he said that nothing was wrong with her, she was just a dancer. She needed to move around to be able to think and focus on something. 
Cecelia Gault
I think that we definitely need to find out what Finland is doing to keep their drop out rate so low. Cecelia Gault says in her post that the drop out rate in Finland is less than 1%, but is 25% in the United States. We also need to find out what other schools around the world are doing to keep the IQ's of their students so high. The United States school system has a lot of changing and catching up to do.
Digital Smarts
I think Vicki Davis came up with a great idea with teaching students through technology and letting them teach each other. It gives them something fun to do and teaches them through current trends. One student mentions that she enjoyed one certain project that she got to work on with other students from all around the world. The students seem to enjoy learning more when they can relate it to everyday life, such as blogging and making videos.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Blog Assignment 1

This is Me!
                Hello everyone!  My name is Amelia Bumpers.  I am 19 years old and I am a junior majoring in Elementary Education.  I have always loved dealing with kids.  I graduated from Leroy High School in May 2010.  I went to Faulkner State Community College in Bay Minette for a year before transferring to South Alabama.  Go Jags!!
                In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, whether it is watching a movie at the house, spending a day in Mobile, or going to a sporting event.  I am extremely close to both of my parents and little sister.  I absolutely love Leroy football (current 2A State Champs) and baseball (current 2A runner up).  I also enjoy watching Auburn football and I plan to get involved with South Alabama football. 
                I love to dance.  I have taken dance classes since I was 4 years old.  I was on the dance line at Leroy my junior and senior years, as well as Faulkner’s dance team for a semester.  If there is no other way for me to express my emotions, I know I can do it through dance.  Dancing is a wonderful stress reliever.  I am very active in church.  I recently joined Leroy First Baptist Church.  I sing in the choir on Sunday mornings. 

Randy Pausch
I learned a number of things from watching Randy Pausch's video on time management.  He pointed out that it is good to think about your to-do list every day.  And not only should you have a to-do list for the day, but also for the week and semester/month, whichever best fits your personal lifestyle.  Also, if you are a procrastinator, it would probably help to start out with the largest and most difficult task and work your way down to the smallest task. 

Practice Post