Sunday, March 30, 2014

Smartboard Project Part A

Blog Assignment #10

This week the students of EDM 310 are to watch "Sir Ken Robinson Bring on the Learning Revolution" speech. The question we are asked is "what can we learn from Sir Ken Robinson?". His video got me to think about what is really going on in education. He starts off saying that there is an education crisis and we need to be aware of this. There needs to be an education revolution. Teachers are still sticking with their old habits. From my understanding, teachers need to get excited about the future and the new ways of teaching. In order to have a transformation in our education systems change is needed. He says one of the challenges is to innovate fundamentally. Innovation is hard work and not easy. It is hard to do because people take so many things for granted. Most of the time people do not even realize this.

In the next part of his speech he says "people do not make use of their own talents". He said "he has met some people who do not think they are good at anything or do not know their talents". Sir Ken Robinson divides the world into two people. He goes on to say there are people who divide the world into two people and people who do not. Some people in this world do not enjoy what they do they endure it. They just get through the day and do not really care about what they do. Then there are people who love what they do. It is not what they do it is who they are. That is who they are and it speaks their most aunthetic self. I think if a person wants to become a teacher they need to be passionate about what they do. Teachers should come to school everyday trying to make an impact in at least one students life.


He discusses what people think about Education. One of the ideas is education needs to be linear. It starts at some point and ends when you have all the knowledge necessary to go through life. He says life is not linear. He thinks life is organic. An organic life is when people find their talents and skills through experiences. But the issue is that people are obsessed with thinking that everyone must go to college. Personally I liked this statement he said "our human community depends on diversity of talent not a singular conception of ability. At the heart of our challenge is to reconstitute our sense of ability and of intelligence." The idea of linearity is causing a problem.

Another important issue he discusses is conformity. The education systems have been built on the model of fast food. Where everything is standardized. We need to recognize a few things here. Human talent is extremely diverse. People have many different aptitudes. It is important to remember that it is all about the passion and what you truly love doing. People are often good at things but don't really care or put any effort into it. A person can always tell if someone truly loves what they are doing. If a person is passionate about something they love it will excite their spirt and energy. When I become an educator I will incorporate fun and interesting activities so students can find their passion.

I will definitely remember the topics discussed in this video and use his advice in the future . Especially when I become a teacher. As educators we need to strive to do our best. As a teacher I need to provide students with the appropriate tools and materials they need to help them learn.


Project # 15

This week our class was assigned to make an individual lesson plan. I chose 2nd grade English. My topic was Nouns. Here is a link to my lesson plan.



Sunday, March 23, 2014

Blog Assignment #9

While I was watching the first graders in Mrs. Cassidy's class in Cananda I saw how she approached having technology in her classroom each day. It was unbelievable how much the first graders already knew about technology at such a young age. Mrs. Cassidy's students are learning how to use blogs in her classroom. They enjoy blogging and get very excited when they get to write or receive comments. The students in her classroom are encouraged to become better writers by blogging because it improves their writing skills among other things. They have already mastered the task of writing nice comments on other children's blogs. They are good about not hurting other children's feelings when they comment on their blogs. Mrs.Cassidy makes sure that the children's safety comes first while blogging. She only uses their first name and not their last. They also have a webapage in their classroom. The webpage lets the students access different pages that help them learn. They can also get on the webpage at home. Wikis are another tool used in Mrs. Cassidy's classroom. They create videos and share them with other classrooms around the world. They also get videos from other classrooms. The children always get excited when they receive a video from another classroom.


In the "Interview with Kathy Cassidy Part 1" she discusses her journey to integrate technology in to her classroom. She says it started out ten years ago when she was given five computers. Then she started using webpages and it went from there. In her classroom Mrs. Cassidy has a classroom web page, blog, and video. She states that she is always adding and trying new things. During the conversation with Dr. Strange she tells us that she has the full support of the faculty and board members to use technology in her classroom. She even has one teacher asking questions and is willing to incorporate it in to his lessons. The parents reaction to the use of technology in her classroom is positive. They really enjoy seeing their children progress throughout the year. They can view their progress whenever it is most convenient to them by looking at their child's blog or page online. Technology is going to part of our future. The tools are not the same as they were when we were in school. Teachers need to be prepared to teach the future generation. Teachers need to use the tools and resources that are available to them online. Another important part of using technology and tools in the classroom is the audience. Students are not only writing for their teachers they are also writing for anybody who happens to stubble across their blogs.

In the "Interview with Kathy Cassidy Part 2" Dr. Strange and Mrs. Cassidy talk about where to start with technology. She suggest doing what your interested in. Everyone is different. Start out with something that you are passionate about. They also express the importance of personal learning networks. Mrs.Cassidy and Dr. Strange's advice is to give PLN's a chance and they will become handy to you in the future.

In the "Interview with Kathy Cassidy Part 3" Dr. Strange gets some of his former students to ask Mrs.Cassidy some questions. The students asked questions about the previous videos. I will definitely benefit and use the ideas and advice given by Mrs. Cassidy. Her approach to technology gives her students the chance to reach their highest potential.

The techniques I would use from Mrs. Cassidy are having a class webpage. I really like how the children can access their webpage at school or home. It would be a great resource for the students. My webpage would include the activities that we are doing in the classroom, whats due for projects and assignments, and events going on at school. A huge benefit from this technique is that parents can be up to date with what their child is doing at all times. A problem I could encounter would be a child not having a computer at home. I would address this problem by sending letters home each week to inform the students and parents of all the information they need to know.

First Graders in Ms. Cassidy's Class

Interview with Kathy Cassidy Part 1

Interview with Kathy Cassidy Part 2

Interview with Kathy Cassidy Part 3

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Project # 14

This week our class was assigned to make an individual lesson plan. I chose 1st grade science. My topic was The Human Body. Here is a link to my lesson plan.



C4T #2

I had the opportunity to read Jennifer Brokofsky's blog for my C4T assignment. She is an instruction Consultant with Saskatoon public schools. Her blog post was titled "Three Act Math Movies Candy Colours". Jennifer Brokosky talks about the math concept of equality in her blog post.The lesson was created for 2nd to 4th graders. She starts out by providing possible curriculum connections. She states the grade levels and standards of what they need to know about this concept. Then she provides videos with the problem and solution to help understand the material. The videos are real life scenarios. The first video is about about how to divide up skittles equally among two people. The kids in the video only like certain colors though. They demonstrate the concept of equality by working together and finding a solution. Children develop math skills by watching and doing hands on work. That is exactly what is going on in these videos. They can practice many math applications while doing this. She also writes the process of each step and walks the reader through the material. She also lists key questions the reader should be thinking of during and after the videos.


My comment to Jennifer Brokofsky was Hi my name is Brittany Sparks. I am currently a junior at the University of South Alabama. The course I am enrolled in is called EDM 310. It involves learning about the tools and uses of technology for our future classrooms. This week I had to comment and summarize one of your blog post. I read your blog post "Three Act Math Movies Candy Colours. I really like the hands on parts of your videos for teaching math. The students seemed to get really interested when the activities had something to do with real life situations. I really enjoyed reading your blog post!

The second blog from Jennifer Brokofsky that I viewed was titled "Building a Culture of Wonder: Inquiry in Primary Education" From the moment children learn to talk their first questions start with Why? Why this? Why that? She says as teachers it is our duty to create a space and time for children to wonder. She shares with her readers how she keeps a culture of wonder in her classroom. First, she created the wonder wall.Jennifer Brokofsy says "The wonder wall is a place where group questions can be modeled, shared, and encouraged." This gives students the chance to answer questions and add more if they want. She also includes wonder of the week, wonder words, and a wonder centre. All of these ideas and activities encourage wonder in the classroom.


My comment was Hi my name is Brittany Sparks. I am a student in EDM 310 at the University of South Alabama. I was assigned to comment on and summarize one of your blog post this week. I like how you used the wonder wall in your classroom. This will encourage students to ask questions and think more. I would like to use this in my classroom when I become a teacher. This idea is different from when I was in school. There was never a time for us to sit and wonder and ask questions. This will give students an amazing experience. It will encourage students to have fun while learning. I really enjoyed reading your blog post!


Blog Assignment # 8

21st Century Learning and Communicating Tools

Technology is becoming part of just about every lesson in todays classroom. Teachers need to find useful sites and resources that will benefit the students. I hope to teach a class of second graders some day. There are many sharing tools available to students. Diigo is one of those many sharing tools. Diigo is sharing tool that allows students to store, recall, and capture information. A common name used for sites like Diigo is social bookmarking tool. One of the important aspects of this tool is you can share your information with the whole Diigo network.

Diigo can be a useful tool for students because it allows them to save information anywhere not only in the classroom. It can also be used to help students catergorize websites they are using. Students can share information or websites with the Diigo social network. While using this tool you can also comment on bookmarks. This sharing tool is very useful for group work. Diigo is useful for projects that require teamwork.

Here are some reasons why Diigo could be useful in classrooms. The first good reason is it allows students to highlight notes or to add sticky notes to the page. This would become important in my classroom when my students are researching a topic or doing a project. Second, students can create a list of websites that are important to them. Third, students can join groups on topics that are interesting and useful to them. This gives the students time to explore new bookmarks that may help them in the future. Students can export bookmarks from Diigo to Delicious. That way you can use both tools when they are needed. The benefits of Diigo are it gives the students an opportunity for active learning. They are organizing information on their own.

I chose this tool because it is a safe way for students to search the internet in the classroom. Here is a video that will give you better insight on how to use Diigo in the classroom.

Another tool I would use in my classroom is Storybird. Storybird is a storytelling website that makes creating and telling stories fun. Students can be creative and work on their writing skills at the same time. I will use this in my future classroom because it will build a writing community for the students. With this tool students are able to share their work with other students. This is where peer evaluation would come in to play. The benefits of Storybird are literacy and self confidence for the students. I chose this tool because I thought it would inspire students to write. Here is a video that elaborates on Storybird and how to use it.



Sunday, March 2, 2014

Project # 6 C4K Month of Feburary

In EDM 310 we are assigned a different kid each week. We are supposed to read their blog and leave them a comment. This shows that teachers and students are already using blogs in their classroom. This gives us a sneak peak of what is going on in other classrooms.

I was assigned to Conner E. in Mrs. Gelde's class. The first post I read from Conner was a description of the Superbowl. He described the weather in great detail. He said that Bruno Mars was playing for the halftime show. His opinion was that the Broncos were going to win the Super Bowl. My comment was that it was a great post. It was definitely an exciting game to watch! My favorite part is the commercials. They are always hilarious.


C4k1 ConnerE.

The second blog I read was from Josh in Mrs. Lindsay's fourth and fifth grade classes in Canada. His blog was titled "Why read online this is why". He stated the pros and cons to reading online. Some advice he stated was that you can make notes and highlight on ebook. The cons were to not put a fact online that is not true. My comment to Josh was that he provided great information on why people should read online and why they should not. These tips will become handy for me in the future. Thank you!



The third blog I had to read was BlahBlah. His blog was about Football. It stated how he dreams of becoming a football player. He seemed very determined about his dream. My comment to BlahBlah was I really enjoyed reading your blog post. It is very inspiring that you are so passionate about your dream of playing football. Just do the best you can and you will succeed!


C4k3 BlahBlah.

The last blog I read was from Ben W. at 7th grade Bode Middle School St. Joseph, MO. He is in Mrs. Tia. Frahm's class. His blog is titled "Book Project". His blog was about a book project he had done for class. The main objective of the project was to find the main theme of his reading book. He also explained that he used the Keynote app for this project. He provided a link to his Book Project. His book project was on the book "Unstoppable" by Tim Green. The message of the book was no matter what obstacles come in your life there is always a way to overcome those hardships. He chose the perfect book to relay that message through his Keynote presentation. My comment to Ben.W was that I told him our class EDM 310 recently had to do a similar project except we used iMovie. I told him that "Unstoppable" by Tim Green had a very inspiring message. I hope that everyone gets a chance to read that story.


C4k4 Ben W.

Blog Assignment # 7

For this assignment, the students of EDM 310 were supposed to watch "The Last Lecture" by Randy Paush. This video is unbelievable and so inspiring. It really makes you take a step back and think about this life. This video makes you want to strive to do your best. The driven question is what do we learn about teaching and learning from Randy Paush?

In his last lecture he discusses how to really achieve your childhood dreams,how to enable the childhood dreams of others, and the lessons he learned.Randy Paush was an ambitious man. He seemed to never give up. One of my personal favorite quotes from him is "Brick walls are there for a reason. Brick walls are not there to keep us out. They give us a chance to show how badly we want something. The brick walls are there to stop people who don't want it badly enough." From my understanding, if you try your hardest and do your best something good will come your way. Of course there are going to be obstacles along the way. RandyPaushquote

What can I learn from Randy about Teaching? In the first part of the video. Randy discusses one of his dreams. That dream was to become a football player. He flashes back to a football practice when he was nine years old. His coach taught him the importance of fundamentals in football. That can be very important when it comes to teaching as well. Criticism is important. People are trying to help you. There is a right and wrong way of criticizing though. Later on in his life he creates a project based learning class at Carnegie Mellon. The class is building virtual worlds. There are fifty students in the class. There are five projects to be created over the entire semester. The class is told to randomly choose teams and they switch every project. Never set the bar for your class. See how far there potential can go. That is exactly what Randy did with his class. This gave the students an opportunity to express there creativity and have FUN while learning. It is important for your students to have fun. When teaching always try to involve the audience. He states the importance of peer evaluation and feedback.


What can I learn from Randy about learning? Learning is a process. Be a hard worker and a team player. People learn from experience. There will be disappointments about obstacles in life. Never give up. Randy seemed to be a happy person and a big dreamer. That is a big key to success. Be up for trying new things. Think about how you say things to others. All of this advice I have received from Randy I will use in the future.


Project #13

This week we were assigned to make a group lesson plan. This group consisted of Chloe Woodham, Meagan McRae, and myself. We chose second grade science. Our topic was The Solar System. Here is a link to our lesson plan.

Project Based Learning Lesson Plan

The Solar System