Sunday, September 22, 2013

iCurio and Discovery Ed

Project Based Learning

Why Podcasts?

I can see how podcasts can be beneficial, but I don't think they would be that beneficial towards my field. I just don't visualize middle school students and especially high school students, enjoying this type of learning procedure in a history class. I think it is a good idea, to an extent, for elementary school students. I think the main group that podcasts would be wonderful for, would be children with learning disabilities. It could really help with students with dyslexia or speech impediments.

Many great examples of podcasts being used in a elementary classrooms are showed in Langwitches blogs. One in particular, Podcasting with First Grade, the students are assigned the story "Vacation under the Volcano" by by Mary Pope Osborne from the Magic Tree House series. The students interviewed the two main characters, "Jack and Annie". It seems like it was a great group project and the students practiced patience and listening. They did one chapter at a time, so I know it had to be pretty time consuming. The teacher addressed these skills during the podcasting lesson :listening, speaking, presenting, comprehension, storytelling, performance, voice acting, oral fluency, media, and technology.

Flat Stanley Podcast, is about a little boy who accidentally is flattened, but in turn, has the chance to travel the world! He visits friends and relatives and has the chance to view amazing sights! This project gives the students the initiative to choose a place they want to visit, how to get there, what they see and who they see. It opens their imaginations and teaches them how to use all five senses when expressing or writing a story.

The Listening Comprehension Podcast assists students in leaning a different language. This podcasting lesson was about writing a script, listening, comprehension, collaboration, speaking skills, and fluency in the target language, which in this case, was Hebrew. The tool allowed them to manipulate sounds, re-listen, think critically and logically about the best way to present the story- all in Hebrew. By being able to play their voices back, they could hear where they were making the wrong pronunciations and fix it. I can see where podcasting can help someone learn a new language.

Overall, I think podcasting can be a great tool and a fun activity for class, but I still think we should not steer away from the basics of learning how to read. Technology is not perfect, it can have a malfunction at any time. At least you know, a plain paperback book won't let you down! You can still bring life back into reading without podcasts. You can have the students act out the story, or even bring in props to to help bring the story to life! Like I said earlier, I think podcasts would be extremely useful in a resource classroom, but I do not think it should be the main source for reading in the general education classroom.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

How can you Provide Meaningful Feedback to your Peers?

What is Peer Editing? displays a sensible way to peer edit someone. There are only a couple of things I disagree with in the video. In the video she states that a peer is someone your own age. I would have to disagree with that statement. For example, in EDM310, students are peer editing each others posts almost every week, but yet, the class is a range of different ages. There is a age gap between my partner and I, but he is still my peer. I think a peer is more like someone in the same classification as a person. For example, Colin and I are both students, therefore we can be each others peers. Dr. Strange however, would not be our peer because he is the professor giving us the assignments that are being edited. The other thing I noticed was the order in how to edit your peers paper. She states that in this order you edit someones paper: "compliments, suggestions and then corrections". I don't think there is a certain order you have to go in to edit your fellow peer's paper or post. I think the main key she points out, "staying positive" is the most important factor.

">Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial is a great slide show on presenting peer editing. It is extremely similar to the video "What is Peer Editing?" I talked about in the first paragraph. The statements I disagreed with in the video are the same disagreements I have with this slide show. Once again, staying positive is expressed as a key component in peer editing. You definitely DO NOT want to tear down someone's self esteem. The slide claims that when editing, you should give specific details in what they are missing or what they need to correct. That is crucial in the editing process because how is someone suppose to know what to fix or work on if there are no details given?

Writing Peer Review Top 10 Mistakes is absolutely adorable! Although it is a comical video, it points out important factors. When editing, you don't want to be mean or rush through it or just simply not care. Peer editing is done so students can help one another and see an outsider's perspective. This video exemplifies perfect yet comical examples of how we should be when editing one another.

Overall, peer editing is a fun and helpful way to see what we are good at and what we need to work on. Colin shows strong efforts in his writing and uses great word choices. He might slip every now and then and not capitalize an "I" but, his work is a joy to read. He brings life to his writing and he always has wonderful yet entertaining pictures to go along with his posts. Great job Colin!

Monday, September 2, 2013

What Will Teaching in the 21st Century be Like?

What will it be like? To be honest, anything is better than the 90 plus percent of the current atypical classroom teachers. For an exaggeration, Professor Dancealot is a great video that unfortunately can seem more on target than many college students would like; take a look and see for yourselves....

Once seen it is easy to ascertain why this style of teaching is never functional or enjoyable. Regurgitating facts out loud to students who can read the same information on the powerpoint is laughable. “Teaching” something that obviously needs direct, teacher to student interaction without any form of actual class involvement is preposterous. However, this is and has been a formula for teaching for a long time now. Besides school already being expensive, school has become monotonous and boring. Tests are just a tool students use to throw down facts that they learned the night before and forget the next day. After all, college is about the destination now; not the journey. Most are here for the degree, not for the education. In part, this has become the normal way of life because the learning has become a chore instead of a desire. Teachers from preschool to college professors, all have the ability to create passion for learning in their students, but most never put forth the effort to find that perfect teaching path. Like an old shoe that stinks, but feels comfortable so people still keep and wear them, many teachers never change their teaching styles after years of doing the same routine over and over and over.

I completely agree with Colin’s statements about Professor Dancelot. Unfortunately, not all teachers put in as much effort as others. I do think that technology is a wonderful thing to use in the classroom, but it should not bet the main source. We still need physical activity in the education world. Computers, video games, ipads and all types of technological resources can brainwash a person. It is great to know technology, but one should also know resources outside technology. Professor Dancelot only used notes and powerpoints as his resources for teaching. He should have involved his students and had them dancing in the classroom! If he would have involved his students, the majority of his students would not have been so confused by the time of the final exam.

The Networked Student Video by Wendy Drexler, Reviewed by Colin Richard
The video, is about a 21st century high school student studying American Psycology. Most of his work is done online and he does not even have a book. He uses the internet to begin an intricate trail of information that will expand his potential fact base and without much puch, automatically go into an expanded question and answer switchboard of which this student will cherry pick wonderful facts from peers and the best professors in the world. The teacher is therefore used merely as a backup if the students gets stuck and as a motivator and cheerleader when the student does well.
I found this video to be well done in its presentation, but lacking in actual thought. As with most arguments for something new and different, one must take everything into consideration. This is not the case in this particular argument.
To begin with, towards the end of the video, the question is presented as to why we even need a teacher since basically all the students information has come from his own determination through resourceful internet scavenging. The answer would put teachers out of a job. It would close schools down. We need teachers to teach. Also, each subject has to be different in nature as to how it can be taught. One can not just have a round idea and fit it into every shaped cog out there.
The video also tells of how the student will be networked into the greatest professors in the world, yet if this form of teaching evolves, where would these great minds be teaching. The very definition of evolution dictates that the species must adapt or die. Well, in this case, would professors die out. Would they lose their desires to be the teacher to the student. Maybe they have passion for seeing kids grow because of their influence. After all, every child is not a genius. Every child is not from a perfect parenting background. Every child can not be placed out of sight, and almost out of mind.
Now, there can be modifications in order to incorporate this video’s principal idea, but let’s not put the cart before the horse. The twentieth century is here. That does mean the internet, computers and tablets are here to stay (for the moment), so let’s move toward the future with eyes wide open for everyone.

Harness Your Students’ Digital Smarts By: Vicki Davis, Reviewed by Stephanie Aldridge
This video shows a great preview of how teaching will be like in the 21st Century. She makes students think and doesn’t always just give them the answers. The phrase “never tell, always ask” we discussed in class on Wednesday is a perfect example of this video. She will use new vocabulary in class on purpose, so the students will have to look them up to know what they mean. This requires the students to use what they have learned to find out new information. I think this is extremely useful and important, especially for our future students.
At one point in the video, the students actually teach her something new. She made a great point when she said that teachers do not have to know everything before they go in the classroom, they just have to have a place to start. Letting students teach each other creates a positive and intriguing atmosphere in the classroom. The fact that students can teach the teacher is not only an ego boost for the students, but motivates them to research more into the things that they are learning.
Overall, I think there are bigger and better things coming for the 21st century classroom. Some teachers are already on the right track and unfortunately, some are stuck in their ways. This class alone has shown me how much the technological world is growing and changing on a day to day basis. Teaching in the 21st century is guaranteed to be mainly technology based, I just hope they don’t completely rely on technology alone. On Sep 1, 2013, at 11:57 PM, Stephanie Aldridge wrote:

Sunday, August 25, 2013

If I Built A School

Content Since I will be teaching History for 11th and 12th graders, I would want them to know the basic uses of a computer. They would need to know how to use different programs such as, Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and it would be a requirement for everyone to have an email address. I would also hope that they would have some basic knowledge of U.S. History. For example, I would want them to have some recollection of certain wars that took place and have a little more than an idea of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Content I would want my students to be able to make power points and explain in their own words different parts of History. I would want my students to be able to learn independently and in groups. Like Sugata Mitra showed, the children helped each other learn different skills with the computer. I want my students to help each other explain History in different perspectives. Methods My main method of teaching would be hands on activities and visual entertainment. I would love to take my students on field trips and see where History actually took place. I might be interesting to read about History, but to me, it is way more interesting to be able to physically see where it took place and how. I would love for my students to have group projects where they can reenact parts of History. Tools The main tools I would use in my classroom are a computer and a video camera. When my students do their reenactments of History, I want them to be able to make cool videos. I think it would make it fun and interesting for them. Why write research papers when you can do the research yourself and reenact what happened? Or even make a power point of what you have learned? Learning Environment Like I explained earlier, they will almost always be an active part in the learning process. They will help one another to teach one another.They will make power points and explain in their own perspective of a certain part of History. They will also research and recreate a moment in History. For example, they can dress up, make certain foods, almost anything to recreate that moment in History. I feel like high school students don't really have the chance to be creative anymore in that aspect. Its all about routine and structure. I want to break from that and see the creativity and excitement brought back to History.

Monday, August 19, 2013

My Test Post Title

This is my First Post. I clicked the HTML button which I should always do in EDM310. I am now a Blogger!