Endless Possibilities

Endless Possibilities

Friday, May 28, 2010

Empowering Learners

As I've been following a few professional blogs I am seeing an overall question arising.....How do we empower learners? As teachers we want them to be actively engaged and motivated about what we are teaching them. What can we use in technology to help ourselves teach them to become independent learners? First of all I believe we as teachers need to rethink how we approach learning. In the book, Web 2.0 New Tools, New Schools by Solomon and Schrum there is a chapter dedicated to students and learning which agrees with the idea that we have to understand how students learn before we can use specific teaching methods to help them analyze, synthesize, and communicate information. Jane Hart, a fellow blogger, calls it The Smarter Approach to Workplace in which she uses an acroymn to summarize her article entitle State of Learning in the Workplace today.

Social Media In Learning By:Jane Hart

I also have been enjoying learning a little more about Curriculum 21 which I first learned about on the Langwitches blog. It is all about why our K-12 curriculum has to change to relfect new technologies and allow for globalization. Heidi Hayes Jacobs introduces Curriculum 21 Essential Education for a Changing World. This concept goes hand in hand with empowering our students to learn.

Langwitches Blog:

Curriculum 21:

Link to Amazon to purchase Curriulum 21 By: Heidi Hayes Jacobs:

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

When it clicks:)

So I'm not sure this actually has to so with technology...well maybe in a round about way. I had the most awesome experience with my fourth graders this week. Technology in our school district is very basic and this is because no one has taken the time to go out there and discover all the cool gadgets that we can incorporate into our classroom so that is why I decided to get my master's in Educational Technology. Anyways I'm off track..back to my students. I've been working with my students on using Microsoft Power Point. This is the first time most of them have ever done anything like this. They are so intrigued and are loving. I just have to show them one time and SNAP!!! they get it. I just took some time to step back and watch them. Their faces were full of excitement and they were helping and encouraging one another. They were showing me things they were discovering left and right. I wasn't the center of attention and it was the most amazing experience. So while teaching has its bad days....I'm saving this memory to bring back the smile. I love those "aha" moments!

Check out this SlideShare Presentation:

Monday, May 24, 2010

Voice Threading

Voice threading is an awesome way to talk with others. I can see how fun it would be to use this for group presentations. I really liked the video that showed us how to use voice thread. I thought the mother and the children part was very funny:) I think students would have so much funny putting their voices to pictures. I also like that you can mark up the pictures. I personally prefer to comment by text. This is because number one I'm reserved and number two it allows me to organize my thoughts. I'm not a person who can easily answer questions or form opinions with little time to think on them. So this is why I prefer to text. I really like that Voice Thread would allow differentiation in my classroom. This possibly would even allow customization for students???? Any thoughts????

Monday, May 17, 2010

My First Experience With Video Conferencing

Using Adobe Connect is a pretty neat way to connect to others. I can see this being used between students and teachers during after school hours. Instead of office hours teachers could list a time in which they would connect to students through video conferencing. Students could also conference between themselves on projects and such. Students who maybe take vacations during the school year or are involved in exchange programs could also use this to check in with their classes. As a teacher you could join up with other professionals and share ideas and actually share things you've tried. Other teachers would be able to actually see what you've created. I also see why families who have distance between them use this to keep in touch with one another. What an awesome resource! With the positives there were a couple negatives. The lapse in time when speaking was a little bit of a challenge. We had several people chatting at the same time which made it hard to hear what everyone was actually saying at times. However, when we disconnected the cameras we could hear much better. As far as my personal dilema......I realized I had to talk closer to the microphone which is on my webcam. I bet I looked like I was going to eat it the closer I came to it:) Maybe I need to try yelling into it………

Quote of the Month

Choice, not circumstances, determines your success

By: Author Unknown