Monday, November 25, 2013

Project #11

To collaborate about Project 12B without meeting face to face our group choose to open a Google Document. Within this document we discussed how we were going to present our lesson. Google Drive is a great way to communicate and collaborate with fellow classmates. Using this tool, we were able to communicate while we were doing our daily routines. It will email each of the group members notifying us that someone has added to the document or project. I plan to use this tool in within my classroom because it gives the students more freedom to communicate on their own time. It also can show who did what within the document so the participation from each group member can be seen.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Blog Post #14

For Blog Post#14 we are required to create our own blog assignment for our designated area or speciality. My area of speciality is elementary education.

In this blog post, you will list one grade in which you would like to teach after graduating.

Once you have selected a grade level, you will then explore classroom management strategies. Explain different strategies you plan to use in your classroom. Explore videos, blogs, and other resources to get information. Be creative and specific to your chosen grade level.

Whole-Brain Teaching:
The grade level I would love to teach the most is kindergarten. I think kindergarten would be such a fun and ever-changing grade to teach. There is always something new and the kids are constantly growing throughout the whole year.

I observed a kindergarten classroom last year every Tuesday and Thursday. In this classroom the teacher was so involved and loved fun and interactive classroom management tools. I want to imply the whole brain teaching tools in my future kindergarten classroom.
whole brain teaching strategies
whole brain teaching strategies

I want to use these classroom rules with my students. If I teach the students these rules at the beginning of the school year and have them repeat them I feel like this will help a lot in the classroom. I will teach these rules using a specific tone of voice so the students will be able to easily remember them. I also want to use the "points" system with my students. I will let the students compete as a class versus the teacher, or as tables competing against other tables. With the points they will work towards different things such as, extra free time, prizes, extra outside time, etc. The point system will make the students work harder because they feel like they are actually working towards a goal at the end of each day. I will also use clapping patterns to get my students attention and interact with them. While my students are walking in the hallway they will also have specific thing to do such as having a bubble in their mouth (mouth full of air), or one hand on their hip and one hand on their lips, "hips and lips and hips and lips." Here is a video I found of a kindergarten classroom demonstrating whole bran teaching strategies.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Final Report on PLN Project #2

I have learned so much in EDM310 this fall about technology and different ways to incorporate technology in my future classroom. I have absolutely loved this class because although there is a lot of work, it is so interesting. I plan on using the tools I have learned in my future classroom when I graduate as well as in my personal life. My PLN, "Personal Learning Network," has been useful in keeping me organized throughout this semester. My personal learning network contains many useful websites. On my PLN I have: Google, EDM310 class blog, Google Drive, my personal blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Pandora, Gmail, University of South Alabama, Amazon, YouTube, TeacherTube,WebMD, as well as weather, calculator, and map applications. I created my PLN through Symbaloo which was a very easy website to set up. The use of my PLN has become very easy and natural for me to use to help me in my EDM310 class as well as other things I am doing on the internet.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Project #12B

Here is a link to the Google Site for our lesson plan.

For this project, we collaborated through Google Docs before we met up to film our lesson plan.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Blog Post #13

to this day

Summarized by: Keri Brown

Shane Koyczan is an amazing man who told his story through poetry. Koyczan began by talking about how as a child we are told to "stand up for yourself," but that is a hard thing to do when you don't even know who you are. He says that we are expected to define ourselves at such a young age and if we didn't others did it for us by calling us names like geek, fatty, slut, or fag. "What do you want to be when you grow up" is not a fair question because it doesn't allow kids to be what they already are, kids.

Mr. Koyczan talks about his childhood by saying:
At age 8, he wanted to be a marine biologist.
At age 9, he saw JAWS and said no thank you.
At age 10, he was told his parents left because they didn't want him.
At age 11, he wanted to be left alone.
At age 12, he wanted to die.
At age 13, he wanted to kill a kid.
At age 14, he was asked to seriously consider a career path.
When he told them he wanted to be a writer, they told him to come up with something realistic. They told him to come up with something and then told him what he couldn't be. He was basically told to accept the identity that others would give him. His dreams got called names too, silly, foolish, impossible, but yet he kept dreaming.

During the ages 15-18, he hated himself for becoming the thing he loathed…a bully. At age 19 he wrote, "I will love myself despite the ease with which I learn toward the opposite." He said that "standing up for yourself does not have to mean embracing violence."

Mr. Koyczan talked about one specific time when certain people always wanted his answers for the homework and he wanted friends so he would always give them the answers. One boy would always call him "Yogi Bear" and laugh at his belly. After a while, Shane got fed up with this and when the boy asked for his answers to his homework, he gave him all of the wrong answers. When the boy got his homework back, he looked at Shane mad and puzzled that he had received a zero on this homework assignment. This was just enough satisfaction for Shane.

picture of Shane Koyczan holding up his hands
Shane closes by saying "if you can't see anything beautiful about yourself, get a better mirror, look closer, or stare a little longer." There is something inside you that made you keep trying despite everyone who told you to quit. He says that you have to believe that those people were wrong. Shane said, "yes, those things did hurt him, but life is a balancing act that has less to do with pain, and more to do with beauty.

Mae Jemison: Teaching Arts and Sciences Together
Summarized by: Kenesha Brown
Mae Jemison is an American physician and NASA astronaut. She was the first African American woman to travel into space. Jemison had a successful career at NASA; however, she resigned in 1993 to form her own research company. Jemison participated in the Technology, Entertainment, and Design (TED) Conference. TED is a global set of conferences owned by a private non-profit organization.
In the video, Mae Jemison explained how arts and sciences should be revitalized. Lewis Carrol quoted “If you don’t much care where you want to get to, then it doesn’t much matter which way you go.” However, Jemison explained that it does matter which direction to take. What we do now is critically important to our future. The world is built off of abstract ideas that people think of today. Knowledgeable ideas came to play as early as the 50’s. The subjects that are now invented, internet, high definition, etc., was thought of and mentioned during the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s.

Jemison explained that during the 60’s people believed in hope for the future. They thought that everyone could participate in giving creative ideas. The tools people think is “hot or cool” now are based off the ideas from the 60’s.

On her trip to space, Jemison took three items with her. She took an Alvin Allen poster of a dancer performing a dance piece called Cry, a Badu statue that was given to her by a women’s society, and a certificate from the Chicago Public School students to work and improve science and math. People found it strange that Jemison took the items she chose. However, she felt as if each of the three things she took with her represented human creativity. Human creativity is what allowed them to conceive, create and launch the rocket into space.

Albert Einstein stated that “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true arts and sciences.” The differences of arts and sciences are deconstructive. People look at science as deconstructive because often times it is something that has to be pulled apart to understand. However, Jemison explained that science provides an understanding of universal experiences; whereas, art provides a universal understanding. People must realize that understanding, resources, and will are the cause of the outcome. Ideas and innovation should be driven from a person’s intellect. Jemison stated that ideas should be thought of as potential energy. Nothing will happen until someone takes a risk. I believe that the arts and sciences play an important role in critical thinking for students. As teachers, we should to continue to stay ahead on a technological standpoint. However, we must remind our students that inventions come from people who are not afraid of sharing their ideas and failing. Students need to learn the importance of embracing culture. They need to understand that there are many ways of viewing situations. Therefore, as educators, we need to teach our students how to accept abstract ideas.

Shukla Bose: Teaching one child at a time
Summarized by: Chelsea Calvert
Shukla Bose is a woman who went to the Indian slums to start making a difference in the education system they have. She has never been educated how to teach but she has been in the corporate word for twenty six years. In 2003, she started the Parikrma Humanity Foundation out of her own house. They started by walking through the slums and visiting the children and the parents. They realized that most of the children did not go to school. They tried convincing the parents to send their children to school. Once they got back to Shukla Bose's house to begin a plan they were overwhelmed with the numbers of children that should be going to school but do not. The number of students that attend school but cannot read or even do basic math. It was then they realized they are focusing on one child at a time. They started a school in a slum of 70,000 people living below the poverty line. The school was on the rooftop of two story building that was only partially covered. The school started with one hundred sixty five students. Now, after six years they have built four schools and a junior college with one thousand one hundred students that are attending. Their goal is to prepare these students to be educated and be able to function in this chaotic world. They teach every student how to speak English within about three and half months. They also chose one the most difficult curriculums and their students excel in it. The students are also excelling in sports.

The schools not only address the student’s education but also the parents. The parent attendance to school meetings is over eighty percent. At first the parents would sign in by using their thumb print but their children taught them how to sign their names. Some of the fathers had begun to attend the school. They had some mothers approach them about wanting to learn how to read and write. They school formed an after school program for these mothers to attend to educate themselves. She says that 98% of the fathers are alcoholics who they send some of them to a facility to get sober. Once the father has gotten sober, they help him get a job so that he does not relapse. The school as also taught some fathers about hygiene and how to prepare meals. Some of them work at the school and cook for the students. This type of job gives the father a sense of importance. The school also has programs for the older children in the families so that they will attend and the younger ones will have a way to school.

Bose addresses a few myths in her discussion. One of them is that the children from the slums cannot integrate with mainstream. She shows a video of a student who was selected by Duke University to participate in a program and was sent to a place that had many different cultures. In the video, the girl discusses how much she loved socializing with people of a different race or class then she was. She said normally she would have never approached people that were not in her social class or of her race. Once she had spoken to many different people she realized they are all the same they were all very friendly and could interact with her.

Shukla Bose shared a great testimony that anyone who has the will to make a change can. Within six short years she has help build four schools and a junior college that in itself is amazing. She not only educates the students but also the parents. I think it was a great of them to start an after school program for the mothers to become a part of the learning process. Helping the parents and getting them involved with education will benefit the students. The parents are more likely to make sure their children go to school and get an education if they are excited about it too. This program is also changing the whole demeanor of households by helping the fathers get sober and finding new jobs. They are also teaching the fathers how to cook and how to set up their kitchens. This not only gives the father a new skill but also gives them the knowledge to share to their spouse. They also provide programs for the older students to ensure they will come to school along with their younger siblings. This is something I would have never thought about doing because normally the action of the older siblings does not affect the actions of the younger children. It was a great idea for them to impalement a program to keep the older students engaged in school.

Friday, November 15, 2013


A “Radical New Teaching Model” That is Missing the Point
This blog is by Brian Bennett. In this blog post, Mr. Bennett talks about his opinion on an article that Wired Business put out earlier this month. He talks about how the article downplays the role of the teacher. He says that "While on the surface, this looks appealing for a lot of reasons. Students can explore on their own without the dictator at the front of the room. They can work collaboratively, problem solving and self-democratizing. This is all great, but having a teacher is still important (and that’s not because I’m a teacher at heart). All of this can be done, but the role of the teacher is to provide context for the content. Anyone can get online and look up facts about the moon, DNA, or the French Revolution. What is missing is a facilitator providing context to the flow of information we get from the Internet." He talks about how it is the teachers job to be the content resource, but to also provide provoking questions for the students while they are using technology.

My Response to Mr. Bennett
I explained to Mr. Bennett that I am currently a student in EDM310 in which we are learning to incorporate technology into our future classrooms. I explained to him that I have learned a lot of useful tools from this class but I do agree that students still need the guidance and support from their teachers while using all of the new technology.

Brian Bennett

Listening Past the TED Talk
This blog post by Brian Bennett talks about a recent TEDxBeaconStreet talk he had watched. He talked about how at first he liked the talk and he agreed with what Richard was saying especially in his opening statement when he said "There’s a more serious digital divide that we face in this country. That is the divide between those who know how to use technology to reimagine learning and those who simply use technology to digitize traditional learning practices." As the talk went on, Brian began to disagree more and more because he said, there are so many things in this story that put Richard, in my mind, solidly in the camp of “digitizing traditional teaching practices.” Brian said "I think I’ve come to the conclusion that most of the widely-publicized talks on education are either 1) given by people with lots of money, or 2) given by people who want to make lots of money. There have been very few compelling TED talks lately that have really communicated some of the major change that can come to education when we really think hard about what technology can help us do."

My Response to Mr. Bennett
I once again explained to Mr. Bennett about our EDM310 class and how we are learning to incorporate technology into our future classrooms. I explained that I think technology is important especially in the day and age, but I do agree with his points as well. I think it is so important to be an involved and engaging teacher. I agreed with him about being the first thing my students see when they walk into my classroom with a smile on my face greeting them to begin the day together. I also thanked him for being so engaged and involved with his students.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

C4KSummary for November

The first student blog I commented on was for Jacob, a year seven student in Mrs Nua and Mr Barks class at Pt England School in Auckland, NZ. On Jacobs post, he created a Google Presentation to show a math problem he worked out with a group. On the first slide he showed the problem, and on the second slide he showed how they worked out the problem. I told Jacob about how we use Google Presentations in our class and I liked how he showed exactly how he worked out the problem and showed each step.
divide, multiply, add, subtract, equals

The second C4K I was assigned was for Mrs. Yollis' Classroom Blog on how to write a compound sentence. For this post, Mrs. Yollis wanted her students to practice writing compound sentences by talking about their Thanksgiving plans and traditions. Since November is "Family Blogging Month," Mrs. Yollis told her students that this would be a perfect blog to get their families involved on. I wrote a little bit about our EDM310 class and our C4K assignments. I also told Mrs. Yollis and her class a little bit about my Thanksgiving plans. I really enjoyed looking around on their classroom blog. Everything was so neat, organized, and creative. The students are awesome at blogging and seem to really enjoy doing so. This encourages me even more to incorporate blogging in my future classroom.
turkey with Happy Thanksgiving

Friday, November 8, 2013

Project #15

For my Project #15 lesson plan I chose to do a Google Site using the BIE forms. I created a one week lesson plan for first grade on Helen Keller and the different ways she communicated. Here is a link to my Google Site.

Helen Keller feeling a woman's face

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Blog Post #12

How to Escape Education's Death Valley

Summarized by: Keri Brown
Sir Ken Robinson begins by giving us a statistic that states "in some parts of the country 60% of kids drop out of high school, in the Native American community it is 80% of kids." This is a very sad fact to think about in our educational systems. One estimate about this is that if we half that number, that would create a net gain to the US economy over ten years of nearly a trillion dollars. Mr. Robinson explains that American spends enough money on education, America has small class sizes for the most part, and we have hundreds of initiatives to improve education. All of these impacts on education are good, but they are all going in the wrong way.

In this video, Sir Ken Robinson outlines three principles that are crucial for the human mind to flourish and how current education culture works against them. The first principle he discussed was that human beings are naturally different and diverse. The education under the No Child Left Behind Act is based on conformity not diversity. Schools need to start focusing on the arts, humanities, and physical education more rather than just the core subjects. One estimate says that nearly ten percent of kids are being diagnosed ADD and ADHD. Mr. Robinson says that "children are not suffering from psychological condition, but yet childhood itself. Kids prosper best with a broad curriculum which includes all of their interests." The second principle Robinson discussed is curiosity. He says that we are all natural learners, we just need something to spark learning. Teaching is a creative profession, and in this profession we need to mentor, stimulate, provoke, and engage our students. Education is all about learning, and as teachers we have to facilitate learning. Robinson says that standardized test should not be the dominant part of education. They are good, but they are not everything. Standardized tests should support learning, not obstruct it. Instead of curiosity we have a culture of compliance and teachers are encouraged to follow "routine algorithms" rather than to excite that power of imagination and curiosity. The third principle Robinson addressed was that "human life is inherently creative, it's why we all have different resumes." He talked about how we create our lives and we can re-create them. Robinson compared Finland to a state in America by saying that when he was at a conference and someone asked their educational leaders about their drop out rate, they looked funny and stated they do not have a drop out rate because when kids have trouble they get help and they have a very broad curriculum. In the United States of America we need to begin by individualizing education and learning. The responsibility of this should be on the school level to "get the job done." Education is not an industrial process based on mechanics, it is a human system. Sir Ken Robinson ends his discussion by saying that "the culture of the school is essential. The "Death Valley isn't dead, it's dormant. Right beneath the surface are these seeds of possibility waiting for the right conditions to come about."

I loved watching this discussion. I feel like we have lost sight of the creativity that is necessary in education. Mr. Robinson had so many wonderful and true points. I completely agree that standardized tests are good to have, but they should not be everything. I feel that students learn better when they are interested and actively engaged in what they are learning. I hope to be a creative mentor to my future students.


Changing Education Paradigms
Summarized by: Kenesha Brown
In Sir Ken Robinson’s video, Changing Education Paradigm, he explains how every country is reforming public schools. The main reason why public education is reforming is because of economics and culture. With economics, people are trying to figure out a way to educate children in the 21st century, given that people cannot anticipate what the economy will look like at the end of the week (Robinson). With culture, on the other hand, people are trying to figure out a way to educate children so that they will have some type of cultural identity. However, where the problem lies with education is educators are trying to meet the future by doing what they have done in the past.

A lot of kids are being alienated because they don’t know the purpose of their education. Robinson explains how when he was younger he was taught to go to school, work hard and in the long run, hard work pays off; however, kids these days don’t believe in that. As educators, we have to raise standards, but the current system is designed and conceived for a different era. The educational system is conceived in the intellectual culture of enlightenment. Robinson tells us that before the 18th century there was no form of public education. Mostly wealthy families could afford schooling. Public education gives compulsory to everyone. It is funded by taxation and free at the point of delivery. On the contrary, a lot of people objected to public education. They felt as if it was impossible for poor and work class families’ children to benefit from getting an education. People believe that these children were incapable of learning how to read and write.

Robinson explains how public education base kids’ academic ability off of deducting reasoning and knowledge of the classic. Children who are smart are considered academic; children who are not smart are considered non-academic. However, non-academic children don’t know how brilliant they really are. Robinson views the model of education as trouble. He explains that the modern epidemic of education is ADHD; however, this is not an epidemic. “Children are being medicated routinely” (Robinson).In today’s society, kids are living in the most stimulating time in the history on the earth. They have a more advance perspective of how technology works. Instead, they are being force with information. Their attention is being pulled away from every technological platform. Lecturing is becoming boring. Children are getting through education by being anaesthetized. Instead of shutting students’ senses off and deadening them to what’s happening teachers should be waking them up.

In addition, Robinson tells us that education is modeled on the interest of industrialization. Schools are being organized as if they are factory lines. Children are being educated in batches, age groups, instead of ability. Robinson explains that the model of education don’t start from the line of mentality; it is about standardization and changing directions.

“Divergent Thinking is not the same as creativity” (Robinson). Creativity is the process of having original ideas that have value; whereas, divergent thinking is an essential capacity of creativity. There are a lot of possible ways to find answers. Teacher should encourage students to find creative ways to interpret a question. Questions can have multiple answers, however, kids are taught there is only one answer and it’s in the back of the book. They are often told not to look or copy because it is cheating, but outside of schools’ walls, it’s collaborating. This is because of the gene pool of education. Sir Ken Robinson made valuable points on how our educational system works. Teachers don’t realize that they are failing our students by not taking advantage of the technological opportunities that is being presented. Great learning happens in groups. Allowing students to collaborate is the stuff to growth in the classroom. As educators we need to embrace our stimulating society and apply real world application to our classrooms. Kids have more advanced opportunities that they need to be exposed too. The educational system from the 18th century has no use for this 21st century generation.

The Importance of Creativity
Summarized by: Chelsea Calvert
Sir Ken Robinson believes that as an educator we have to prepare our students for what the world will be like in just a few years even though we ourselves have no idea. He believes that creativity is just as important as literacy. In every school system the arts at the bottom of importance. Mathematics and English are the two most important things in the education system. Art and music are taught but not on a day to day basis like he believes they should be. He refers to the woman that was a choreographer for the production "Cats." He tells us how even she was a child her teacher thought she had a learning disability because she could not sit still and was a distraction to the class. Her mother took her to the doctor to learn that her daughter did not have a disability she only was able to learn when she was active.

I think that Robinson has made a great point in this video. I had never thought about much the arts get overlooked. Every student learns in different ways and as an educator it is important to meet the students’ needs whatever they may be. Teachers should incorporate the arts into their classroom. Incorporating the arts in lessons would not be difficult to do.

After watching this video, I think the schools are more focused on trying to catch up with today's technology. It seems as if the schools are putting so much money into technology and having less teachers. The school systems have always been low on funding when it comes to teachers so they will get rid of the art teachers first but to be sure that every student has a personal computer to take home.

I think it is important for students to be technology literate but I think that it is equally important for them to be able to express themselves and be creative. The education system needs to find a way for the students to do both. If the school cannot afford to have a teacher for the arts then the classroom teacher needs to be sure to incorporate it into their lessons.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Blog Post #11

Watching Little Kids...Big Potentialreally opened my eyes to the different opportunities for using technology in my future classroom. This video actually got me more excited about trying different things even with my younger students. When I become a teacher, I would love to teach kindergarten or first grade. I always knew you could incorporate technology into these grades, but I never imagined using blogs, wiki, facebook, or even twitter until I watched Ms. Cassidy incorporating this into her first grade classroom.
computer and apple

One of the tools and techniques Ms. Cassidy uses in her classroom that I plan to incorporate in my future classroom is student blogs. I think student blogs are an excellent tool to help children learn to use computers and be on the internet while still working on their writing skills. Ms. Cassidy explained that technology is only going to get bigger and keep expanding in our world. It is better if children begin learning how to use these tools early on. Seeing her class post blogs and hearing about how excited they are when they get comments and views from people all over the world shows that it is an interesting and effective tool for learning. Students in younger grades normally have a daily journal where they write their thoughts and ideas about a specific topic. I have even thought about starting a student blog and for part of the week their "journal" entries would be on their blog. I really enjoyed hearing about Ms. Cassidy's ideas of using technology in her classroom. I can definitely take a lot out of this and learn from her things to incorporate in my classroom.

Project#10 Interview