Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tool #11

My favorite tools was Animoto. It was fun and easy to use. I can see me using this tool many times during the school year. The students can use it to share information learned during our bird unit. It can also be used when we learn about famous historical figures, and animals and their habitats.The children will really enjoy using this tool.

My thinking has changed through this process. Most importantly, I completed this and I feel very proud of myself. I was dreading doing the 11Tools because technology just doesn't seem to like me. It seems like something always goes wrong for me. I was very apprehensive about this journey. Now, I feel successful and determined to use as many of the things I learned about as I can in the upcoming school year.I look forward to introducing many new apps and sites to my students. I look forward to collaborating and blogging with other teachers to help me continue to grow.

The most unexpected outcome was that I was able to complete the 11Tools without any tears! It is only June 20 and I am already finished. I am very proud that I finished and actually had a good time completing most of the lessons. Everyone said Tool #4 was difficult, but I liked it the best. I look forward to using all the new things I have learned about this year.

Tool #10

Most importantly, I want my students to learn that they must immediately minimize their screen and contact an adult if they see anything they think is not appropriate while using the internet. I had two different instances where the same student stumbled across(according to him) something inappropriate and then showed it to other students instead of letting my substitute know right away. The other children went home and shared what they had seen with their parents. Of course, this caused some major concern for the parents. It was understandable due to the nature of the pictures that had appeared on the computer screen.

As a result, I have taught my students that they cannot access Google and type in the name of things they want to research without a teacher being present. I know that inappropriate things can pop up very easily, even when students don't mean for it to happen.

I want my students to be able to recognize when the information they access doesn't appear factual or accurate. I also want them to learn how to access websites that have been deemed appropriate and useful by teachers.

I have been using Brainpop and Brainpop. Jr in my class for several years. It has great lessons on how to use the computer correctly and safely. I plan to use these lessons again this year.
In addition, our librarian does lessons on digital citizenship with the students. She talks with the children about this each time they use technology for lessons in the library as a constant reminder for how to use sites  safely.

At curriculum night this year, I will devote part of my discussion with parents on digital citizenship. I will stress the importance of teaching the children how to access safe sites and what to do at if they stumble onto something that doesn't seem appropriate. I can also include a link to the Brainpop, Jr. lesson on my blog for parents to access. I will also consult with other teachers on my team to find out what they do in order to educate parents on the importance of digital citizenship.

Tool #9

It is extremely important to tie your technology in with your objective. We have learned over the past few years how important it is for your lessons to be congruent. If the the technology doesn't fit the lesson, it can confuse some children or become a time just for 'playing around" with it. The children may not see its real value as part of their learning.

Holding students accountable for the time spent in stations is also a vital part of the learning that takes place in the classroom. It helps them to see that what they are doing is important and not just time for "fluff". It enables them to be both creative and productive. It also helps teachers in that their products can be used as forms of evaluation or assessments. It provides students with a variety of ways to show their learning- not just through paper/pencil tests.

I attempted to use the Mangahigh website this year. I spent the time to go in and set it up for my class to use. However, something (as is the case with me all the time) didn't work right and the lessons that showed up were way too difficult for my children. I don't know what I did wrong, but plan to try again this year. I know that Ms. Craddock used it to compete against students at other schools in other countries and really  enjoyed it. I will get her to help me again this year. Hopefully, this year  I will get it right because I really want to implement this in my classroom to help increase the children's knowledge and speed with math facts.

I will also try to use the Learning Games for Kids this year. I will use this as part of my math and literacy workstations. The children can access this website and use it to practice skills in the various subject areas.I hope to incorporate some of the games into the math plans that I do for our grade level.

Number Find Lite- I will use this when learning about number patterns in math. I will have this as a choice in my math workstations. The children will mark the date they complete this station as a way to hold them accountable.
iBird lite- I will use this app as a supplement for when we do our bird unit in the spring.

The children can also use the iTouches and iPads to video tape themselves reading stories they have written and then share them with other students. I also want the children to pair up with students in other classrooms to complete projects together. I think they will enjoy being with other children and learning from each other.

Tool #8

Because two teachers on our team  received a technology grant a few years ago, we have been fortunate to already have some experience with using the itouches and netbooks in our classrooms. I have used them as workstations and in collaboration  with students in other classrooms. The students love using them in the classroom.They have become a vital part of our classroom learning.

Three things I learned from today's videos:
How to navigate the home screen on both devices
How to sync with itunes
How to access approved SBISD apps

Ways to use these devices in the classroom;
For research when learning about animals and their habitats, birds, landmarks, famous historical figures, and landforms
For playing games that help practice various math and reading skills
For blogging and collaborating with students in other classes
As workstations during language arts and math time

I will teach the children how to care for the devices and use them properly. I will set up a rotation schedule for use of the devises. I will also have my classroom helper learn how to be responsible for charging and storing the devices properly. 


Tool #7

Collaborative lesson with Mrs. Beman's class

Objective: After consuming numerous book reviews on spaghettibookclub.org, TLW write a book review, after reading a book of their choice independently, using the criteria for how to write a good book review.

Implement: I will use this lesson in the spring after we have spent time choosing and reading "just right"  books and have consumed many book reviews.

Tool: Blogger- the students can blog with students in other classes about their favorite  books and share their book reviews.

Project: After the children have completed a book review, I plan to have my students type their book review on a post  to be shared with the students in  Mrs. Beman's class. Her students can post their comments in response to our book reviews. The children can ask questions, recommend other books, and enjoy communicating about the books they are reading independently.    

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Tool #6


The children can use Diigo to easily access websites while doing research on birds, animals, landmarks, landforms, etc.This year my students used Diigo at home and in the classroom to access websites for practicing math concepts. They also were able to listen to books using the link to the website for Tumblebooks.
Wallwisher can be used for children to communicate their thoughts about any topic/unit covered in class.They can post comments about what they have learned. They will learn from reading other classmates comments.I could use this as a form of assessment at the end of a unit.
I think children will love to communicate through these cool tools. Anytime they can use technology to show their learning, they get excited. They will enjoy talking back and forth with friends.


Wordle: bird words
I could see me using this tool to introduce our unit about birds. I could ask the children to look for words or phrases they think describe birds.  I could also use this tool at the end of our unit for the children to show what they have learned about birds.This was fun to create. The children will love to make Wordles.
Try our slideshow maker at Animoto.

This was so fun! This tool can also be used with our unit about birds. We can also use this when we learn about animals and their habitats. The children can create videos as a culminating activity.