Tuesday, March 13, 2012

FINALLY - Tool 11!!!!!

I think Dropbox will be the one that I've learned about that will get the most use from me.  As for my classroom, I really like learning more about Google programs, not just Google Docs, and think I can incorporate that easily into some of my lessons.  Also I want to try to use Today's meet to help move along classroom discussions, as well as have everyone participate.

I don't think that my thinking has really changed.  I'm just going to have to focus more on getting it out there.  I will have to change lessons to utilize the technology we will be receiving, and giving some of the control over to the kids over projects...because honestly they already and probably always will, be more techno-forward than I will be!  But I'm working on getting there!

I really didn't have any unexpected outcomes, but a lot of surprises!  I did not realize all the things that were out there.  It was a bit overwhelming.  I didn't look into all the links/sites they had listed, and the ones I did view I didn't spend as much time exploring them as I would have liked.  But I can always go back to them to learn more about them.

Tool 10

3 Things about being good Digital Citizens
  1) How to find good sources - use some Alan November techniques here (look at the ending .edu .gov)
  2) Safety on the internet - never give out personal information
  3) Plagiarism - how easy it is to 'accidentally' plagiarize

I have several good resources from when I taught Tech last year.  There are some websites that have explanations, videos, and even class work (paperwork) to help cover the 3 concepts that I have listed above.  Brainpop also have good videos that talk about cyber-bullying.

Tool 9

1) The technology is a tool or source that we use to help teach the content  If the technology doesn't have an objective, then the students would just be playing with them.  Having an objective helps remind the students of what their focus should be on.

2) Students need to be held accountable for the stations they visit to ensure that learning is taking place.  Stations are a way for students to explore the content on their own in many different ways.  If we as teachers aren't monitoring them, or their progress, then essentially these stations just become free time.

3) MangaHigh is a site we have begun using this year in our Math class.  The students love that they are competing with other schools!  PhET is another site I looked at.  I think this is one that I would be able to use for my Science class, but I would want to 'play' around on it more.

4) I found an app earlier this year that explains the phases of Mitosis and Meiosis.  The app goes through the phases one at a time and explains what happens in each.  You can either read or have it read out loud to you. It also has picture gallery of microscopic slides and video - although these videos are blocked at school through the firewall.

5) I can see the students using these devices to create tutorials for other students in the class (or for future years)  I also plan on this first year just having the kids explore all the different sites and app and rating which ones they think connect to our class lessons the best.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Tool 8

   Dell Netbooks
       - will have Windows 7
       - they will have webcams!!!
       - will have to have students use SBS\username to be able to login (I will have to learn this!)
      - will need to set up iTunes account and sync each device with my "Teacher" computer

I haven't really thought about how to manage the devices yet.  I will really have to talk to my coteacher about that and we will have to decide on something together.  I'm guessing since we will only have enough devices for 1/2 the kids we will just assign each device a number and have the kids check out a device when they use them. Don't know?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Tool 7

A) Students will develop ideas about how to reuse/recycle/re-purpose unwanted "trash" items to create an item that is decorative and/or useful.
B) In the spring during our unit on Human Impact on the Environment.
C) Google Docs, Skype
D) Students bring items from home that can be refurbished and turned into something decorative or useful. Items may be re-purposed, transformed, or combined with other materials so a new product is created. The top items have the potential to be sold at our PTA auction.
E) I will want to start off small, maybe work with the other 7th grade class on our campus. Maybe eventually move to collaborate with other classes in our district.

Tool 6

I already have an account and frequently use Google Docs.  Mostly my documents are shared with other teachers.  We have a few documents that are used school wide (staff only) to help make sure students are getting their work completed. I haven't assigned my students to use it in my classroom, but have had some students that used it to work on group projects.  I like it because you don't have to worry about the kid that has all the notes being absent on a day!  It is also nice because I can monitor and see where their work is going and make notes or comments if needed.  The best part about the kids using Google Docs is that you don't have to worry about what program they did their project in, will it work on this computer, did they save it to a place I can get it, etc.

I do have a Diigo account but I have not really had the time to figure it out.  I know when I first heard about it it sounded great and I know I want to somehow use it, just haven't been able to do that just yet.

I have also set up a Edmodo account and use it (though rarely) with my Student Council kids.  We put up the forms they need throughout the year so they don't have to keep asking us, as well as send reminders about meetings, etc.  I would like to practice more with it so that I can use it in my regular class.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Tool 5

When I first saw MakeBeliefsComiz I immediately thought about the comic strip our kids have to create to show primary and secondary succession.  I think they would enjoy it much more doing it on the web and printing it out all official looking.  I am especially thinking of my students that are drawing handicapped like I am.  The think I do not like is the limited scenes and characters they have.  I feel like it would hinder the creativity that my students usually show given just a blank page and color pencils.  Also I don't like that you can't save to return to it later.

Here is the movie I made at GoAnimate:


It was kind of fun, but like the comic I'm afraid the preset limits would hinder the creativity of my students.
I know that many of my students enjoy using Prezi.  Several of them used it earlier this semester to make presentations; it was the first time I had seen or heard about it.  I think that once I have more practice with creating them it would be something I could use in my class as both instructional and assignments for kids.  It would just take me a while to create them, but I think once I get used to the program it wouldn't be difficult to use.

I think I'm also going to check out Mixbook.  I don't think I would use it for instruction, but document the activities we do in class as a 'scrapbook' to watch the last day of school.  Or show students in future years what past students have done.  I will probably even create a personal account to share with my family members who live out of state!