Sunday, December 8, 2013

Blog Post #16

Final Reflection


It would be my dream to one day teach Kindergarden. My classroom will be filled with a lot of learning opportunities. I want to be that teacher that students will remember for the rest of their lives and I hope to make a mark on each and every one of them. My classroom will be a fun learning environment and I want my students to know that they can accomplish anything if they put their minds to it and try their hardest. I want to teach my students a lot but I also want them to learn from each other. As I teacher, I hope to be a person that my students can trust and rely on.

I want my students to love to learn. I hope they will walk into my classroom with smiles on their faces ready to learn. I will be active and involved in teaching my students. I hope to teach them through stories and music. Music stimulates the brain and helps children remember things a little better. It will also make things more enjoyable for them and will help them understand. I plan to do some project based learning lessons because I want them to not only learn from me, but from each other.

The major tool that I plan on using in my classroom is blogging. I have come to find out, with doing all of my C4K's this semester, that blogging is very effective for students. Even though in Kindergarden they aren't able to write lengthy blog posts, they are able to write at least a sentence or two and get their thoughts out there. Another tool I plan on incorporating in my classroom is the SMARTboard. I have learned a lot about the SMARTboard this semester and have come to love it. It's a great way for students to learn. You can have them interact in the classroom with it by having them come up and do bellringers or projects on it. It is also a fun way for students to teach their class! The third tool I think I would use would be an iPad. If I am lucky enough to have an iPad for every student in my class, I would. I find them very useful. Students can do educational games and reading on the iPad so they can learn independently. The last tool I would have in my class would be podcasts/vodcasts. I would love to record or video my students thoughts and have them go back and watch themselves.

In my classroom I would love to have a corner of it dedicated to reading. I would set up a nook for students to go over to and just read during free time. I think reading is a very important aspect for Kindergarteners to learn and grow. I definitely want to somehow incorporate music into my classroom any opportunity that I can. I will emphasize following the rules because I believe it is very important for children to learn to follow the rules at a young age.

Response to Blog Assignment #1
When I have first started EDM310, I had no idea what to expect or what tools were out there for students to learn. I wrote in my first blog assignment that I wanted to have iPads, the SMARTboard, and blogging. I still want to have all those things, but now I have more of an understanding about all of these tools. I know how many opportunities are out there for students and what they can do. I also said in my blog assignment that I would have a nook and a place for students to read, I still want to have that, but instead of paper books I would like for them to be on the iPad so students can start learning on how to work an iPad at a young age.

One tool that I didn't mention in blog assignment #1 that I would like to have now would be podcasts and/or vodcasts. I have heard about them before but I was really introduced to them in EDM310. I think they are a great way for students to record themselves and then go back and critique what they do.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Blog Post #15

Assistive Technology
Calah Reynolds


The video iPad Usage for the Blind is such an interesting video. I had no idea that the iPad could be set up to assist a person who is visually impaired. This opens up so many different opportunities to me as a teacher, especially if I have a visually impaired child in my class. As you are using the iPad it can assist you the whole way, from starting it up to using the apps. All you have to do is simply double tap to unlock it. If you are on a part of the screen that has no apps and is blank it makes a clicking noise, but when you hover over an app it says the apps name out loud and tells you to "double tap to open". I, as a teacher, already want to have iPads in my classroom for activities throughout the day, and now that I know that they can assist children with disabilities, it makes them so much more useful. Especially now since iPads can have books and textbooks on them. If you open up iBook on your iPad, all you have to do is double tap when the app is open and it will start reading to you. I was so interested in iPads for the visually impaired that I looked up the video Blind Apple iPad Tech Camp. This is a camp that teaches the blind how to use an iPad and what it can do for them. For those who aren't completely blind, they can zoom in as much as they need to be able to see and those who are completely blind can have the iPad set up to where it can talk you through everything. iPads open up so many opportunities for children with disabilities. So many of the kids with no vision are behind in their academics and don’t have the same access to technology as their peers that have vision, but iPads give them a chance. It let's them do things that they didn't even know were possible.

Blind Doing Math
Rachel Hinton

The video, Teaching Math to the Blind, really shows what problem is presented when a student is blind and trying to learn complex things like math. Because blind students use brail to learn, and it is linear, it makes understanding and aligning the math problems difficult. With this being said the students are presented with a device with the number on one side and brail on the other with a barcode that they can scan and the computer reads. They can align the numbers in a digital graphs to keep them in order and able for them to read. Teaching Math to Blind Students really shows more in-depth the different methods that can be used to teach the blind. One method is using mathematics codes. These codes are placed on a desk plate. This plate can also be used for students to plot points. For upper level trigonometry the students will use objects in the shape of triangles to learn the different functions. For statistics the students will use Microsoft excel to perform the different functions. They can also use other applications such as the virtual pencil algebra program with allows the problem to be read to them and the audio graphing calculator which provides them with assistance just like a regular calculator. These devices and assistive materials gives the blind students the ability to accomplish something that is essential for working and living today. It also gives them hope that they can accomplish anything.

Assistive Technologies
Elizabeth Johnson

For this assignment, I watched a video called ”Assistive Technologies for Vision and Hearing Impaired Children”. In the beginning of the video, it gives some examples for you to imagine what it would be like to be visually or hearing impaired in a classroom with no assistive technologies available. It really opened my eyes to what it would be like to not have ways to help these students. The video then describes how assistive technologies enhance learning, removes barriers, pushes boundaries, gives hope, and challenges the way we think. The video really encourages and challenges people and teachers to do all that they can to accommodate all students. Some examples of assistive technologies that the video gave were text to speech devices, text telephones, talking calculators, note takers, sensory aids, speech to text devices, FM radios, iPhones, Ipads, Ipods, screen magnifiers, and flip cameras. ”Education World” is another source that gives great information about assistive technologies for students. This website gives some other examples of assistive technologies. Some of them include hearing aids and amplification devices that enable hearing-impaired students to hear what's going on in the classroom as well as glare-reduction screens, screen magnifiers, and Braille note-taking devices that enable visually impaired students to participate more fully.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Blog Post #14

Blog Post #14 What is it really like to be an elementary school teacher?

Read What It's Really Like to be an Elementary School Teacher and/or Confessions of an Elementary School Teacher. Summarize the challenges they faced/are facing as an elementary school teacher and put what challenges you think you will face as a teacher. Also, include what you think will be most rewarding.

Blog Post Example:

In What It's Really Like to be an Elementary School Teacher, some of the challenges include the money, the kids, the paperwork, the parents, and the workload. Many people don't teach for the money because this isn't the type of job to do so. They teacher because they have a passion for it. In this article, it states that one teacher "stopped teaching for several years but missed the interactions with students." She stopped teaching to take a job with better pay. You don't make a lot of money and you dedicate a lot of your time for teaching, but most teachers wouldn't trade it for anything. The biggest challenge for many is the paperwork/workload. Teachers spend hours upon hours writing student assessments, creating independent education plans, and filling out mandated forms.
I think, as a teacher, some challenges I will face will most certainly be the money and the workload. I know that most elementary teachers don't get paid that much, but that's not why I want to be a teacher. I want to teach so I can educate children and watch them grow by my teachings. I want to watch my students make discoveries and, as it stated in What It's Really Like to be an Elementary School Teacher, watch "the light bulbs come on in kids’ eyes when they get it." I definitely think that will be the most rewarding part of being an elementary school teacher.

"A teacher takes a hand, opens a mind, and touches a heart."

Project #2 PLN Final Report


I have added quite a few different resources to my PLN over the semester. My PLN has been a lot more helpful than I thought it was going to be. I added a few blogs that I came across, including my own blog and the EDM class blog. It's been very easy to access any website that I am trying to go to because I added the majority of websites I use on a daily basis to my PLN. Some of the websites that I use are Facebook, Twitter, YouTube,, Pinterest and Blogger. I've filled up over half of my tiles and I plan to add more as time goes on!

C4T #4, posts 1 and 2

All the Pieces Fit

In Elvira Deyamport's blog post, All the Pieces Fit, she talks about how they are in their All About Me Unit. This year, she decided to have them "either complete a puzzle piece or their own puzzle to show how all the pieces fit for them." For 2nd and 3rd grade, the puzzle pieces included preferred multiple intelligence, interests, and goals for the class. For 4th-6th grade, it included preferred multiple intelligence, preferred expression style, interests, goals for the class and career goals. She posted samples on her students puzzle pieces.
My Response

In my response, I told her that I really liked her puzzle piece activity and that I thought it was a great idea! I think it's great that they get to write out their own goals and, for the older ones, their career ideas.
Animal Research Poems

In Elvira Deyamport's Animal Research Poems, she talked about what they had been up to in her classroom. She explained that they had been focusing on endangered animals, but she felt that they needed a creative way to show what they learned. She chose to have them do poems and provided them with templates to get them started. She said that the poems "challenged my students to be flexible and figure out ways to incorporate different information about their animals in new and interesting ways." She told us that some of her students struggled with poems at first. She had them use Pages to display their poems.
My Response
In my response, I told her that I really liked how she used poems to bring out her students creative side and that it was such a great idea. I told her that I looked at some of her students poems that she posted and that I really enjoyed them!

C4K Summary for November


My first C4K in November was for Sunny in Ms. Horst's 7th grade class. Sunny starts off by talking about Melody in the book "Out of My Mind". She then explains three different life lessons that you could learn from reading that book. In my comment, I told her that I really enjoyed her blog post and that she did a great job explaining the different scenarios and life lessons in "Out of My Mind".

My second C4K was for Jasmine in Mrs. Lagitupu's class. Jasmine talks all about One Direction in her blog post. She tells us the 5 different boys and how they got started. They started out by auditioning on the UK X-Factor separately, but then Simon Cowell put then together as a boy band. In my comment I told her that she did a great job and that I enjoy One Direction as well. I said that I have been keeping up with them ever since they were on the X-Factor.

In my third and final C4K I had Mata and Tyrese. This blog post was called Twin Towers, and in it they posted a picture of them two holding their towers. In my comment I told them that they did a great job with their towers and that they were very colorful! I asked them if they had fun and if it was hard.

Project #12 Part B

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Blog Post #13

A Girl Who Demanded School - Calah Reynolds

In the video A Girl Who Demanded School, Kakenya Ntaiya shows us the troubles she went through to get to where she is now. When she finished middle school, she had the chance to go to high school, but she had to get her father's permission first. She made a deal with her dad, saying that she would go through the traditional Maasai rite of passage of female circumcision if he would let her go to high school. While she was in high school she met a young man from her village who had been to the University of Oregon, and she wanted to go to where he had been. She applied and was accepted into Randolph-Macon Woman’s College with a scholarship, but before she could go she had to get the support of her village so she could raise money to fly to the United States. After she finished college, she came back to her village and, with the help of her village elders, built a school for young girls in her community.
We can learn a lot from Kakenya Ntaiya. At her school in her village, she is making a difference in so many young girls lives. She is teaching them that they don’t have to go through the traditional Maasai rite of passage of female circumcision, they don’t have to get married when they are 12 years old and they can all create and achieve their own dreams. She is opening up so many doors for these girls that they wouldn’t have had otherwise. From Kakenya we can learn that you have the opportunity to make something of yourself and that you can achieve a lot in your lifetime if you put your mind to it and do it.

To This Day..For the Bullied and Beautiful - Elizabeth Johnson
In the video, To This Day..For the Bullied and Beautiful, Shane Koyczan takes us through his struggling life journey. He was ridiculed and bullied as a child. He was told that his life ambitions would never come to pass. But from these struggles and pains, he became a writer. He wrote an incredible spoken-word poem called “To This Day”. In this spoken-word poem, he does a beautiful job talking about the bullied and hurting children and how they tend to go unnoticed in classrooms.
There is so much that we can learn from this video! As a future educator, I want to make it my mission to love and encourage all of my students. I hope to facilitate a classroom where all are equal and discipline those who bully others. I really enjoyed this video. It definitely opened my eyes to the issue of bullying and the lasting effects of it.

Teaching One Child at a Time - Rachel Hinton

In the video Shukla Bose: Teaching one child at a time Shukla Bose talks about the different schools she has created to enable children to learn. The schools allow children from slums and orphanages to learn things that they would never have the opportunity to without her help. This talk shows us how important it is to give every child an opportunity and not only the children but their parents as well. Bose makes a very good point when she talks about the parents and how many times it is thought that just because they are from the slums they do not care. This is far from true. She says that most of the time at conferences they have 80-100% attendance. This is pretty amazing. Maybe if our parents were as concerned about their children they would be more eager and receptive to what is being taught because they would be proud to show their parents what they are learning. There are many encouraging things that can be taken from this video. In my opinion if children can go into a school that is taught in a language that is foreign to them, learn things and come out wanting to be neurosurgeons then anything is possible in a country where we have resources to use at our fingertips. We should take this as a lesson that if we push our students then anything is possible. Never expect less of your students because you never know what they are capable of.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Project #15

Project #15


For my project #15, I did a google site with the BIE forms. I created a one week lesson plan for third grade. Here is a link to my Google Site called Name That Animal.

Blog Post #12

How Schools Kill Creativity - Calah Reynolds

I watched Sir Ken Robinson’s How Schools Kill Creativity, and I thought it was very interesting! I love his humorous attitude. He is entertaining to watch and I think we can all learn a lot from him. Robinson makes a very good point when he says, “We don’t grow into creativity, we grow out of it.” If you think about it, that is true. When you look at a child they have such creativity and wonder, but as you watch them grow into adults most of them lose that spark. Schools nowadays are so focused on the math and sciences rather than the arts and music, and many people look down on the idea of someone wanting to grow up to be an artist or a singer. That is one thing that is wrong with this world. We should be embracing the idea of our children wanting to use their creativity and think outside of the box. We need to educate our children on “their whole being so they can face this future”, not just one side of the brain. Children grow up learning that it isn’t okay to be wrong, but as Robinson said it, “If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.” He’s right, you shouldn’t live your life trying to please others. You should live your life by taking chances.
“We might not see the future, but they will. Our Job is to help them make something of it.”

Changing Education Paradigms - Rachel Hinton

In Ken Robinson's video he begins by talking about the reasons the school have began to change. First of all schools want to teach children how to be apart of the changing economy and secondly they want them to have a sense of cultural identity and globalization. Robinson points out that this is being done in the wrong ways. Schools are trying to teach students with old methods of teaching, ways that are non effective and boring. He states that we are alienating students and they have no desire to want to be in school. They are now saying what is the point because they see so many people, even with college degrees, not succeeding why would they want to sit through something so boring if it will not further then in the future? This current type of education is not for this age. They need something new and exciting, something to engage their interested. We found it very interesting the point Mr. Robinson makes about ADHD. We had never really realized how many people had been diagnosed with this. If you really think about his argument against it it makes so much sense. In today's world students are thought to be unruly and uncooperative if they don't want to sit still and listen to a lecture for an hour and thirty minutes. If we gave them something more interesting it is a good possibility they would not be this way. This is something that should be considered by teachers and parents alike. Divergent thinking is something Robinson points out that we find very important. Divergent thinking is not the same as creativity. This is when you take a question and are able to interpret it and answer it in many different ways. If we teach children how to not only be creative but also become divergent thinkers their though process would develop so much more than we could even imagine. We are killing this type of thinking by educating the students. It's like when they are " educated" they forget how to learn on their own. Mr. Robinson tells us if we can begin to think differently about human capacity, understand that collaboration is key and understand the habits and habitats of instruction that is when we will have effective teaching.

How to Escape Education's Death Valley - Elizabeth Johnson

There are many things that we can learn from Ken Robinson’s video How to Escape Education’s Death Valley. He begins by saying that he was told that Americans did not get irony. However, he discovered that Americans do understand irony when he heard about No Child Left Behind, because children do, in fact, get “left behind”. According to Ken Robinson, scary numbers of students drop out of school in America. It’s not that money isn’t spent on education in America, it is that the money is going in the wrong directions. He describes three principles to allow children’s minds to flourish. First, human beings are naturally different and diverse. In NCLB, diversity is ignored and conformity is encouraged. I learned from Mr. Robinson that children must learn from a wide and broad curriculum instead of a narrow-based spectrum. The second principle that is crucial for children to flourish according to Mr. Robinson is curiosity. Children are natural learners. They just need to interested and spark their curiosity. He says that great teachers not only pass on information to students, but they also mentor, stimulate, provoke, and engage. I want to be this kind of teacher! I want to be more than just a “passer of knowledge”. I want to facilitate learning in my classroom. The third principle is that human life is inherently creative. We create our lives as we go through them. He goes on to talk about standardized testing and the educational school system in Finland. So, what are some things I learned through this video? I learned the importance of valuing students through teaching. It’s so important to individualize, be creative, and spark curiosity when teaching. No two children are the same, and the way they learn is different. Also, I need the support of others while teaching. It’s so important to continue to learn and be trained throughout my career. I really enjoyed this video! I learned so many things from Mr. Ken Robinson.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

C4T #3, post 1 and 2

"Infographic: Modern Slavery"

In Larry Ferlazzo's Infographic: Modern Slavery, he posted a photo that was about modern slavery all over the world. It stated that there was 29.8 million people living in modern slavery today. It said modern slavery consists of slavery(the condition of treating another person as if they were property), forced labor(work taken without consent, by threats or coercion) and human trafficking(people are brought through deception, threats or coercion, through slavery, forced labor, or other forms of severe exploitation). The photo then tells us the percentages throughout the world of slavery.
My Response
In my response, I stated how I think it’s crazy how many people don’t realize slavery still exists in the world. I became aware of human trafficking going on in the United States 3 or 4 years back and I was shocked. It’s unbelievable how much stuff that is going on in our country that we aren’t aware of.

"This Year’s Shipment Of Stress Balls For Students Has Arrived!"
On Larry Ferlazzo's blog post This Year's Shipment Of Stress Balls For Students Has Arrived, he explains how every year he orders stress balls for students who have a lot of energy and self-control issues. He said that research shows that the clenching of muscles could be helpful for self control, so he gives them stress balls. He gives them to students after asking them to commit to not throwing the ball or giving it to another student. Usually, half of his students use it consistently and it is helpful. But, the other half break the rules which result in them having to turn it in.

My Response
In my response, I told Larry Ferlazzo that I think stress balls would be a great thing for students to have. That way, they can contain their energy and self-control. I told him that I thought it was cool that he thought of that because it's a very different approach.

Blog Post #11


I really enjoyed Kathy Cassidy's approach to technology. She is always trying to incorporate technology in her classroom because she has noticed that kids love using it. She thinks that technology and kids come hand and hand. Each individual student in her class has their own blog and they blog frequently. Even though it is only one sentence, the kids enjoy getting their thoughts out there. They love to blog because they get to see different people from different places comment on their blog post and they also get to see how their writing improves throughout the year. She has the blog set up to where the kids can see where from the world people are who view their blog. I think that having kids blog is an great tool and I would like to use that in my own classroom. It's awesome that the students get so engaged in blogging and that they can see themselves improving. There are many benefits for using technology in the classroom for young students. It is great to start them out at a young age, because then they would grow up using it and learn how to use these tools early in life. I really enjoyed listening to Kathy Cassidy's view on technology and I plan to use some of her ideas in the future.

C4K Summary for October


My first C4K in October was for Saffron in Mrs. Ripps class. Saffron starts off by explaining that his teacher told them to do a brain teaser with a partner. They were told to not talk to their partner at all and that the only thing that they could right down that the answer to the brain teaser. He said that he wanted to talk to his partner so bad and that they ended up not being able to make it very far. I told Saffron I thought it would be hard to not be able to speak to your partner for a long time, especially doing a brain teaser. I told him he did a good job and thanked him for sharing!

My second C4K was for a girl named Emma. In her blog post she explained a part that happened in a story they were reading in class called "Out of my Mind". She said how the main characters dog helped her when she fell out of her chair. Emma asked what other jobs do service dogs have and what are some things you can do to help when you see a service dog. I told Emma that the dog sounded like such a sweet dog and that I love seeing service dog helping people out. I also told her that service dogs can do all kinds of things from protecting people to helping them walk. I think that if you ever see a service dog guiding someone you should help them by opening up the door.

My third C4K was for Connor in Mrs. Schroeder's class. He talked what happened that week in school. He said they had two specials, which were art and music and he had a states test that week.In my response I told Connor that art and music are my favorites! I said that I love music and that I play the piano and sing. I asked him how his test went and that he did a great job on his post!

My last C4K was for Chrisopher in Mrs. Sommerville's class. In his post he posted a tension bar graph for the story "Maui Me Te Ra".I told his that I thought it was impressive that he already knew how to do a bar graph on the computer and that he knew how to measure tension. I told him he did a great job!

Project #12 Part A

Project #10

Interview Video

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Blog Post #10

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."


I watched Randy Pausch's Last Lecture video and I really enjoyed the lecture that he gave. He started off by having a great attitude and I was automatically hooked onto what he was saying. He began by saying that if you look at his CAT scan, you can see that he has 10 tumors in his liver and that the doctor told him that he had 3-6 months of good health left. Even though Dr. Pausch only had that little time left to live, he didn't let that stop him from living life to the fullest and having fun. He said that he is going to keep having fun up until the moment he dies. Dr. Pausch had such an optimistic view on life, and that was one thing that I really enjoyed about him. His main focus in his lecture is not only his childhood dreams and how he achieves them, but also how he enables the dreams of others. Pausch taught a class at Carnegie Mellon called Building Virtual Worlds; it was a project based learning course. He pushed his students to their limits in this class because he knew they could do better.

Dr. Pausch explains how when he was a child, all he did was dream. As he grew older, he strived to achieve all of his dreams that he had as a child. His childhood dreams were being in zero gravity, playing in the NFL, authoring an article in the World Book Encyclopedia, being Captain Kirk, winning stuffed animals, and being a Disney Imagineer. He achieved all of those dreams in some way, shape or form. It is so inspiring to see someone go after and accomplish every single one of the dreams they had when they were a kid. Pausch says that, "it’s important to have specific dreams." Now I agree with that statement completely. I think it is important to have something to strive for, whether it's big or small. You should have something to work towards.

I learned a lot from Dr. Pausch. He taught me that no matter what, you should always go for your dreams and should live life to the fullest, even when the going gets tough. As a teacher, he let his students go off on their own and create their own world and do their own thing. He didn't step in their way and tell them what to do, he let them experience in on their own, and I admire him for that. I think we can all learn a lot from Randy Pausch. He wasn't afraid to go out and conquer his dreams, like so many people are. He went for it full speed ahead and didn't let anything or anybody stand in his way. As he once said, "Remember brick walls let us show our dedication. They are there to separate us from the people who don’t really want to achieve their childhood dreams. Don’t bail."


Project #14

For my project #14 I did chose to do a Google Site. My lesson plan is called Name That Shape! Here is a link to my Google Site.

Basic Shapes

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Blog Post #9

In the first video we watched, Back to the Future, Brian Crosby is talking at a TED conference about his class structure, the students within his class, and the different projects he uses to teach them. Each project he does is one that sparks the interest of all his students and helps them to become more excited about learning. One thing he emphasizes is that no tests are given, but the student use different things like videos and blog post to gage their learning. The project he emphasizes the most is a weather balloon project his students did. He tells us how the students were involved in the project and how much they enjoyed it. He also tells us how after they did the project the students were asked to make a blog post that talked about their “high hopes” which became a world-wide sensation. It really shows us how PBL can be used to empower our kids to learn on their own and make them love to learn. We think that this video is a great representation of what PBL is and how when it is used correctly in the classroom how the kids can learn to collaborate, become motivated, connect with others and become empowered through using technology. Crosby makes a great point when he says that we can’t race kids through school but we must give them the opportunity to build skills from the world. We feel that if we can incorporate different projects like Mr. Crosby and allow the students, no matter what social status they hold, to have a chance to learn through PBL we will have a group of students who will be prepared for what their futures hold.

In Mr. Paul Anderson’s video, Blended Learning Cycle, we learn a lot about the Blended Learning Cycle. We think it is a great concept! There are six parts to the Blended Learning Cycle. You start with a good question and/or hook. You have to have something that will get the students attention right off the bat. Next, you want the students to investigate, experiment and use inquiry learning. You then have a video. For example you could use a video podcast to do a lot of the ‘direct instruction’. The fourth thing is elaboration. During this part, Anderson does diagrams and explains the physics of the example he is showing the students. Next he talks about the review portion. Anderson explains that he meets with the students individually or in small groups and asks them questions to check their understanding. They can’t go onto the next part, which is summary quiz, until he knows that they understand everything. So when they are done with the review, they go onto the summary quiz which will test them on their knowledge. If they don’t understand it they will have to go back to the beginning. We think the Blended Learning Cycle is a great tool that will be very helpful in the classroom. It’s a great approach for students to learn something, and to help the students who aren’t so engaged in learning become more engaged. We agreed that we could use it in the classroom when we are introducing a new topic to the students. It’s a great way to make sure the students actually understand what they are learning, and are not just going through the motions.

The third video that our group watched was called Making Thinking Visible. Mark Church, a sixth grade teacher, asked his students to make a headline regarding a video that they watched the day before. They were placed in small groups and were asked to sum up their thoughts about it into one headline on a strip of paper given to them by Mr. Church. Then, after a few weeks into the lesson, the students were asked to reevaluate their headline and see how it may have changed after learning more. We definitely saw where we could learn so much from Mr. Church. We learned how important it is to make learning visible to the children by ways like making a headline visible on paper. In addition, we learned how working in small groups really helps to develop ideas and learn from one another. Lastly, revisiting previous work after learning more about a topic can be very beneficial. It causes students to engage in critical thinking about how their ideas may have changed. So our group learned so much from all three of these teachers. We learned many things that we could definitely use in a future classroom one day.

By: Calah Reynolds, Rachel Hinton and Elizabeth Johnson

Sunday, October 13, 2013

C4T #2, post 1 and 2

"It's Gone"

On Teacher Tom's blog post "It's Gone", he talks about how he has a shipping crate outside of his classroom for as long as most of the current enrolled students have been there. The kids in his class play in it. It was originally flipped on its side with a bug terrarium on top of it. All the kids 'hideout' on the side that is open. He one day decided to flip it on its bottom so that the side that was open was facing the sky, he figured the kids would like climbing inside and out of it. The next day a few of his students stood around the crate talking about the changes. Tom says that he prefers his kind of playground rather that the 'tidy fixed equipment ones' because you can change it ever so slightly and make it a whole new place.


My Response:
In my response, I said that I liked his post and found it interesting to see how children react to different things. Even if the change is minor, kids will notice it and take wonder. It's cool to see how they use their imagination because there is no telling what they could be pretending the crate could be!

"Those Guys Were Really Nice To Me"

On Teacher Tom's blogpost, "Those Guys Were Really Nice To Me", he talks about how in the 5's class they are playing the game Animal Twister. Animal Twister is basically the same as regular Twister except you use animals and the first one to "capture" the animal that is called out wins the card. He said that normally he is the "caller", but on mondays he would turn the duties over to Audrey. At one point in the game, Phil started to become frustrated because he couldn't win. He threw a mini tantrum and went over to Teacher Tom. After a while he rejoined the game, looking hopeless as ever. Audrey told everyone to not try this round and to let Phil win. Every other round they would alternate so Phil could win some. After the round was complete Phil went and did something else. Teacher Tom went over and talked to him to see if he was feeling better. He then replied by saying, "Those guys were really nice to me."
Animal Twister

My Response;

In my response, I stated that the story was such a sweet story and that more people in the world should be like Audrey. It's amazing that a five year old can be filled with such kindness!

Blog Post #8

21st Century Learning and Communicating Tools
A Collaborative Assignment

By: Calah Reynolds

I am interested in teaching Kindergarten and the tool for communicating and learning in the 21st century that I picked is iCurio. We have learned quite a bit about iCurio this semester in EDM 310 and I have come to find that it is very useful. For Kindergarteners I think that it would be an easy tool for them to start off with.

iCurio is a place where students are free to explore the internet while still being limited on what they can see. You can use iCurio as a search engine and if you find content that is valuable to you, you can then save it in your storage. iCurio is a place that can teach students how to be organized on the internet at a young age. Students can save websites and online materials to their storage, then go through and organize and delete them as they please. On iCurio you can also form study groups online with students who are the same age as you and in the same class. I like it because it limits students to what they can see, so they don’t run into anything inappropriate.

There are games for students to play on iCurio that can help them learn in a fun and simple way. You just simply type the subject you are learning about in the search bar. It then pulls up links to a bunch of different websites that they can choose from. There are a variety of different websites the student can pick from, it ranges from worksheets to games to everything in between! iCurio is a very useful learning tool that I think will come in handy in the future for my classroom.

Teaching Channel
By: Elizabeth Johnson

The Teaching Channel is an online website that offers videos, common core resources, and lesson plans for teachers. The possibilities are endless of the resources available to teachers on Teaching Channel. Teachers are able to browse through videos organized into different categories based on subject, grade level, or topic. Like I said, the resources are unlimited. One video that I watched was called ”Super Digital Citizen”. In this video, Sam Pane who is a fifth grade teacher at Focus Learning School is Omaha, Nebraska, describes his lesson on teaching students how to use the internet in the correct way. The students create superheroes on their personal laptops in order to describe scenarios of how to use the internet safely, respectfully, and responsibly. This is just one video of many on Teaching Channel that teachers can view and use in their classroom.
Teaching Channel

Ted Talks Education
By: Rachel Hinton

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out in 1984 as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design. Since then its scope has become ever broader. Along with two annual conferences -- the TED Conference and TEDGlobal -- TED includes the award-winning TED Talks video site, the Open Translation Project and TED Conversations, the inspiring TED Fellows and TEDx programs, and the annual TED Prize. On talks from TED confereces are available to all for free. These videos allow people all over the world to view the great ideas presented at these conferences and use them in anyway they can. You can narrow the videos down by searching the site to find what you are looking for. After typing in “education” I found many different playlist pertaining to education that has ideas to use for teachers in many different areas ranging from teaching in the liberal arts to what has went wrong and needs to be changed in our education systems today. is a great resource for teachers to use to broaden their horizens and gain knowlege through others around the world.

Project #9


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Blog Post #7

A Collaborative Assignment


Project Based Learning: Parts 1 and 2
By: Rachel Hinton, Elizabeth Johnson, Calah Reynolds

Anthony Capps is a 3rd grade teacher in Baldwin County. We really enjoyed his videos, Project Based Learning Part 1 and Project Based Learning Part 2. He really brought to light just how effective PBL can be in the classroom. It is really great to actually have someone give their different experiences with PBL and how they used it. He gave great examples of how he used it in his classroom. Through PBL, Anthony gave his students the chance to become involved in their state, community, and even half way around the world. Another things Anthony really stressed about PBL is the importance of self evaluations. A major thing we learned from these conversations is that if Project Based Learning can become the basis of learning in every classroom, then we will have a group of students that care about what is going on around them and are passionate about learning new things.


iCurio and Discovery Ed
By: Rachel Hinton, Elizabeth Johnson, Calah Reynolds

Anthony uses iCurio frequently in his classroom and let’s his students use it on their own so they can have the freedom to use the computer and search the web while still being limited to what they can see. He lets his students use iCurio like a search engine so they can save content that they find valuable in their storage. iCurio teaches virtual organization and allows students to start getting organized online at a young age. They can store websites and online materials in their storage and go through to organize and delete as they please. In addition, Anthony talks about the importance of another tool called Discovery Ed. He talks about how it is great to have visualization to couple with learning to support whatever text you’re learning about. It can be used to research further into what they are studying. It gives videos to gather more information about a topic. Students can use it for research, but Anthony also uses it to teach with as a teacher. Students tend to learn more when they can see and hear the information. So, Discovery Ed is an awesome tool for both students and teachers to use.

Additional Thought About Lessons
By: Calah Reynolds

lesson planning

According to Anthony Capps in Additional Thought About Lessons, lessons are at least four layers thick. The first layer is how the lesson fits in with your year. You should make sure your curriculum fits in with all the standards. The next layer would be the unit. You have to make sure your unit flows together and that everything is connected somehow. You can’t just give the students the work all at once, you have to give it to them in units and at the end of each unit they should be able to master what you have gone over. Next is the week and during the weekly schedule you need to make sure you can get everything done that you have planned. Last is the daily lesson. This is how you deliver it to your students. You should have something to keep their attention, something to keep them engaged, and something after the lesson to cover what you taught and make sure they understand it so you know where to pick up the next day. I think that those four components are really important to remember when making lesson plans. I also think it’s important to remember not to fall behind with your lessons because if you do it might mess up your whole unit and maybe even year.

The Anthony-Strange List For Teachers Part 1
By: Elizabeth Johnson


I really enjoyed this video, ”The Anthony-Strange List for Teachers Part 1” ! I learned so many helpful tips that I will be able to use not only now, but also as a future teacher. There were six tips that were discussed in this video.
1) Be a constant learner yourself. It is so important to be interested in learning yourself as a teacher. If you are not a learner, then you won’t be a successful teacher. You have to model learning for your students, and if you cannot do that, then how will your students ever be able to learn from you?
2) Teaching never ends. It is hard work, but it is rewarding. As a teacher, it is important to know that work is not separate from play. You can learn the craft of teaching in your free time. Yes, read books for entertainment. However, substitute them for research books to help you become a better teacher. Allow your work and love for teaching to come up in conversations. You cannot limit your work hours to an eight hour day. You will never be as effective as you can be. Allow work to be fun. The effort is rewarding.
3) Be flexible. The unexpected will happen. You never know when surprises will happen when you are a teacher. It is important to be creative and flexible. I loved the example in the video where the servers were down, so the students were painting on the floor. This is a prime example to always have a back-up plan. You cannot always plan for these things, but you can have a good attitude about it and be flexible.
4) Start with a goal. If you do not have a goal or expectation to reach, it is a sure thing that you probably won’t make it there. Start with the end in mind. Think of the expectations and results you want to accomplish. What do you want your children to learn or get from the lesson? You may not get there the way you planned, but you can still get there another way.
5) Engage 100% of your students, 100% of the time, in 100% of projects. It is important to make sure that what you are teaching is shareable. Is what I am teaching or how I am teaching motivating my students to learn? One question you can ask yourself is, “How can I get all of my students on board today?” This will change your entire outlook on teaching.
6) Reflect, revise, and share your work with an audience. Even as a teacher, we must constantly be reflecting on and revising our work and teaching strategies. Take critiques you get from your audience or students to revise your work and make it better. Students change, technology changes, curriculum changes, so it is important to constantly be reflecting and revising our work in order to be the most effective teacher we can be.

Use Technology- Don’t Teach It!
By: Rachel Hinton


In Anthony Capps and Dr. Strange’s conversation on technology in the classroom, Anthony gives some really great advice on how teachers should allow the students to actually use technology in order for them to learn it, not teach it to them. Anthony tells how if you allow students to experience the technology for themselves, without teaching it to them, they are more likely to take away from their mistakes and know what to do next time. He allows the students to experience different types of technology everyday so they can become familiar with different things that will help them in future projects. He also makes a really great point that many times the student may actually know how to use the technology better than you. With this being said, there may come a time when the student has a question that you cannot answer, this is okay, together you can find out. We can use our students to help us learn every day and technology is a great way to allow them to do that.

C4K Summary for September


My first C4K was for Tyler in Ms. Martins 10th grade English class. Tyler talks about what he believes and he believes that skateboarding is a sport that takes a lot of hard work and practice. He talks about how even though skateboarding is cool, it is also very dangerous and you should wear a helmet and elbow pads for precautions. He says that the ramp is the most challenging part for skateboarding and if you don't master it, it could be career-threatening and a complete failure if you mess the trick up. Skateboarding is very important to Tyler and he believes that God created it for kids just like him.

My second C4K for the month of September was for a boy named Ran. Ran's blog post was titled "Questions" and he asks two questions for his audience to comment and answer. The first question was "Explain how your favorite color makes you feel?" and his second question was "What happened in your dream last night? Explain why with specific details." I commented and answered his questions!

My last C4K for the month was for Studamyer, an 8 year old at Pt England School in Auckland, New Zealand. Studamyer did a blog post about a math problem. The problem was, "Jack and Ray were at the rugby. Ray’s team was winning so Jack decided to give Ray a problem to deflate his ego a bit. So Jack said 'Did you know that today is my three sons’ birthday?' 'How old are they?' Ray asked taking the bite. 'I’ll give you a hint. The product of their ages is 36 and the sum of their ages is 13,” Jack replied. “That’s no help,' said Ray. So Jack weakened and gave him another clue. 'O.K. My youngest son is very naughty.' 'Nothing to it,' exclaimed Ray and he told Jack the correct ages of his sons." Studamyer also incorporated a video and picture to help explain the problem.

Project #2

PLN report #1


The personal learning network I picked was Symbaloo. I found it very helpful. It's an easy way to get to all the websites that you go to on a daily basis. It already came with some websites that I use quite often like Blogger, YouTube, Twitter, gmail and Pinterest. I added a few more websites that I will be using like iCurio, Teacher Tube and I changed the colors of some of the tiles and organized them. I am very glad that I made a PLN because I think I will be using it a lot in the future! It is a very useful thing to have.

Project #13

Collaborative Lesson Plan

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Project #8

Toot & Puddle: You Are My Sunshine

Blog Post #6

What Do We Need To Know About Asking Questions To Be An Effective Teacher?

Asking Questions

In Maryellen Weimer's blog post, Three Ways to Ask Better Questions in the Classroom, there are, as stated in the title, three ways to do so. The first way is to Prepare Questions. By preparing the questions you are to ask, you are making it less confusing on yourself and your students. If you just ask your students whatever comes to mind, it might not be as clear to them as it was to you in your head. If you write out your questions beforehand, you can make them clearer and more understandable to your students, therefore you will get more participation out of them. The second way is to Play with Questions. Weimer raises a great point when she states that "As soon as the question is answered, it loses most of its power to engage students." That really is what happens, once the teacher asks a question and it's answered, the students stop thinking about it. If a teacher were to write to question on the board, tell the students to think about it, go on with the lesson for the day and then collect answers to that question at the end of class, students would be more engaged. It would get them thinking more about the possibilities of that question. The third and last way to better questions in the classroom is to Preserve Good Questions. If you have a good question and you would like to stay focused on that question, you can keep it and think of different ways to revise or reword it. Another way to preserve a good question is to write down a question a student asks that you think is a great question and use it as an example in another class. That way if you aren't having any participation from a class, you can use that example to help get things started.

Classroom raising their hands

On the post Asking Questions to Improve Learning, it tells us that when preparing for a class, think of specific questions that you will ask your students. That sounds a lot like what Maryellen Weimer was tell us in Three Ways to Ask Better Questions in the Classroom. We're hearing that a lot because that is what teachers need to be doing to get students to participate and to be more engaged. In Asking Questions to Improve Learning, it goes over General Strategies for asking questions. One strategy is when you plan questions, you should keep in mind the goals for your class. For example, if you would like your students to have more critical thinking skills, you should ask questions that will be more challenging and more thought provoking. A second strategy is if you ask a 'yes or no' question, you should follow it with another question so your students will go into more depth rather than a simple 'yes or no'. There are two types of questions you can ask. You can ask either closed questions or open questions. A closed question is a question that has a limited number of answers and is often more difficult. It also tests students comprehension. A open question is a question that has multiple, sometimes conflicting, answers. It encourages more active learning in the classroom.

Asking Questions Map

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Project #3 Presentation

Blog Post #4

Why Podcasts? What is a Podcast?

According to Judy Scharf in her What Is A Podcast? blog, she explains that a podcast is simply a cross between a "Broadcast" and an "iPod". She goes on to say that a podcast can include music and it can be listened to on the computer or even an MP3 player. You can download it on iTunes and listen to it there as well. All you need to make a podcast is a microphone, a computer, and some sort of software that can make podcasts.

1st Graders Create Their Own Read-Along Audiobook

On 1st Graders Create Their Own Read-Along Audiobook blog post, I thought that using a podcast with first graders was a very unique approach to get the students more involved in the classroom. It was neat that the students got so excited to read out loud and then go back and listen to themselves. It was also interesting that they wanted to re-record if they didn't like the way their voice sounded. Getting students involved with podcasts at a younger age is an awesome idea! That way they will be more involved with technology as they grow older. It was a great idea for the teacher to print out scripts so the students could follow along and wouldn't get lost. It's inspiring listening to students read since a lot of younger kids struggle with it. I think that doing podcasts is an excellent way to incorporate reading in the classroom.


The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom

The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom was a great video! I think that bringing podcasts into the classroom is a great benefit, especially for students who are sick and stuck at home, that way they can still listen to the lecture and won't get behind in class. I wish that my teachers throughout high school would have used podcasts because that way whenever I missed class, I could still know what we did and wouldn't miss anything important. Bringing the stories in books to life using podcasts is a good way to get students involved more. I feel like they would enjoy listening to the stories more rather than reading it on their own. Vodcasts would be a great benefit to the classroom as well, that way visual learners could gain something from it.


Flat Stanley Podcast

The Flat Stanley Podcast was so cute! It was such a wonderful idea to incorporate this podcast into the classroom, all the students really seemed to enjoy it. I want to be a Kindergarden teacher and I would love to use this in my classroom to get my students more involved! I loved listening to each of them tell their own stories as they "traveled" all over the world. It's such an inspiration to see children enjoying podcasts. It goes to show you that if you put in the effort to include children in things like podcasts or vodcasts, they will put in the effort to be more engaged.