Friday, April 26, 2013

C4T #4

Framed Chalk board that says Teach, Create Share

My C4T #4 assignment was on Mr. Steven Anderson. He has a blog called, Blogging About the Web 2.0 Connected Classroom.

Professional Development On Your Time, Your Way

Mr. Anderson's first blog post that I read was about Professional Development for teachers. A lot of times teachers may think that Professional Development is a waste of time or boring but there are many tools out there that can make it a better fit to their needs at their own pace. Learning new things and keeping up with the pace of the technology in today's world is vital to our students and classrooms. Mr. Anderson lists and links several helpful sites:

Simple K12 Webinar Series

Classroom 2.0 Live!

Bam Radio Network

School Leadership Summit Recordings

TED Talks

Twitter Hashtags

I will definitely be adding these to my PLN. Hopefully if anyone reads my blog other than Dr. Strange they will find these sites useful too. My response to his post was:

Hi Mr. Anderson! I am working on my Alternate Masters in Elementary Education and I am one of Dr. Strange's EDM310 students at the University of South Alabama. You can find my blog here. I found everything you said in your blog about Professional Development for useful to me. I am working on my PLN and I will definitely be adding the sites you provided to my PLN. Every little bit helps. Thanks for sharing the sites and I look forward to reading more of your posts.

I thanked him and left a link to my blog.

So You Wanna Use Blogs in the Classroom

The second blog by Mr. Anderson I read was called, So You Wanna Use Blogs in the Classroom. This post was actually really helpful for what we are doing in EDM310 right now. It basically talks about how to start a blog in your classroom or how you go about getting your students to set up their blogs for the classroom. The two most popular blog sites for students are Edublogs and Kidblogs. He also links several useful websites and tips pertaining to starting a classroom blog. I hope if any other students read my blogs and are sincerely interested in a classroom blog they check out these links.

My response to his post was:

Hi Mr. Anderson!

My name is Jamie Barbour and I am an Education Major at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I am one of Dr. Strange's EDM310 students. I am pursuing an Alternative Masters in Elementary Education. You can view my blog here. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this blog post because all semester I have been learning about classroom blogs. I am a new comer to the blogging world and I hope to one day have a classroom that utilizes a classroom blog. I think having a blog and having students have a blog is really vital to today's classroom. Technology is all around us every where and I think students should use it in every way possible. I also think having a bigger audience for your writing only helps you become a better writer, which is something every student needs to be. Thanks for sharing what you know about classroom blogs. I will definitely be using this information in the future. I have shared some of your links on my blog as well so hopefully it can help others. I will also be adding these sites to my PLN. Thanks again for posting this information.

Sincerely, Jamie Barbour

Blog Post #14

Teacher Knows if You Have Done the E-Reading

Teachers at Texas A&M know if their students are reading their E-textbooks or not. "They know when students are skipping pages, failing to highlight significant passages, not bothering to take notes — or simply not opening the book at all." They along with 8 other universities are testing software from CourseSmart which allows them to track their students' progress with digital books. CourseSmart individually packages for each professor information on all the students in a class. This also affects how teachers present material and how students respond to it. For example, if a student does poorly on a quiz or chapter test it lets the teacher know how often the student actually read or studied the material in the book.

I think this technology could be useful as a teacher. I would want to know if my students were assigned homework to read and there was software to tell me if the students actually read or not it would help in classroom discussion. It would also probably, definitely make me give pop-quizzes on the days the students did not read. However I know students can grasp things in the classroom better than reading it on their owns so maybe it would not tell me much of anything. But I think that if a student was struggling and I could see the student was actively reading and highlighting the material then I could see they were having a learning or comprehension problem and could better help them by sending them to the counselor or meeting with the parents to see about getting the child tested or getting them some outside help. I think it would be great in assessing learning disabilities.

A screen shot of several different e-readers
As a student this new software just puts more pressure on me as a student. I'll be honest I always do my assignments and take notes and highlight my books but I am not a big fan of the digital book. It hurts my eyes and my head to read from a computer for long periods of times. So this would really be difficult for me. I also am the type of student who likes to highlight important passages and make notes about things in the margins of my book so I do not really know how it would be possible on an e-reader. I can tell you that I can read something a hundred times and still not know what I just read, but I am ADD so maybe this would let my teacher be more aware of how difficult it is for me to comprehend what I am reading sometimes.

The questions I would have for the teacher in this class would be:

1. Am I being graded on what I read and don't read?

2. Will this affect my grade if I get behind on the reading or read at my own pace?

3. If I am grasping what we are being tested on what does it matter if I am reading the book or not?

I guess my only real question that I would ask a student is does it help them when testing to read the book or do they have some other way of scoring high without reading the text?

My only comment is this: I have paid a lot of money for my college education. I am working towards my second masters that I am paying for. Who is to say I should be graded on what I read from a text book or not if I know the information and am passing my tests without it. A classroom should be engaging and if the only way to engage me is to force me to read a textbook, memorize information, and then test me on that information then why the heck am I paying so much money to get what I could just do on my own? A college professor should be teaching a heck of a lot more than just the book because it is costing me an awful lot of money to teach myself what someone is getting paid to do.

Final Report on PLN

Personal Learning Network Collage
A Personal Learning Network or PLN is the set of people and tools you can call upon for collaboration, consultation, help, or any other type of assistance throughout school and your career as a teacher. I created my PLN using Symbaloo. Symbaloo is a way to organize your PLN. My PLN has grown significantly since I last reported on it's progress. I have added many social networking sites to my PLN. They include Pinterest, Edmondo, You Tube, Facebook, and Twitter. I also have added many of my C4T blogs to my PLN. I have been using Pinterest the most pinning lesson plans, classroom ideas, classroom activities and projects, and bulletin board ideas. I also have a network of friends that are teachers on Facebook that I know I can go to and ask questions as anytime. My PLN will continue to grow beyond what I have started in EDM310. I will definitely use it frequently as I continue to learn new things as a student and as a teacher.

C4K April Summary

C4K #9

Comments for Kids image with a Computer with words below My C4K #9 was on Aruna A. She is a 4th Grader in Mrs. Geldes' class and she lives in Nebraska. She wrote a blog post called Cool Nebraska. In it she names some really cool facts about her state. Her post says:

Nebraska’s state bird is the western meadowlark. The state flower is the golden rod. The flower grows in feedls. The tree is the cotton wood, but it is not the cotton that we use for the close that we where. Nedraskas state drink is a drink that we like. It is milk. Nebraskas states soft drink is Kool ade. They even have a musime that is called the Kool ade musime! Nebraska is called the Husker state! The reason way it is called the Husker state is because we have the Husker stadium here! Just like other states we have all the normal seasons. Dose your state have the same thing? Nebraska hase really cool places here, like coco keys and the amizening pizza mushion and much more cool and awesome places. Would you ever like to come to Nebraska? You should it is such a fun place to visite!

My response to her post was:

Hi Aruna!

My name is Jamie Barbour and I am a college student at the University of South Alabama and I am visiting your blog from Mobile, Alabama. I am studying to be an elementary school teacher. I also have a class blog that you can find here. I love all the cool facts you said in your blog about your state. It sounds like a real cool place to visit. I also love Kool Aid and I did not know there was a Kool Aid Museum. How neat! I would definitely like to visit your state. Did you know that Alabama is known as the Yellow Hammer State? It is the Yellow Hammer state because of our state bird the Yellow Hammer. Our state flower is the beautiful Camellia flower. My state also has all the normal seasons that your state has except we don’t get much snow in the winter and our winters are not very cold. But we do have hot summers which is great for all the beautiful beaches that we have. Would you ever like to visit my state? I hope you have a great 4th grade year. And keep up the great work on your blog! I really enjoyed learning about your state.

I thanked her and left a link to my blog.

C4K #10

Outline of the country Australia with Australian flag inside the borders
My C4K #10 was on Rochelle. She is a year 4 student at Leopald Primary School in Victoria, Australia. She is in Mrs. Morris' class. She wrote a blog post called My Easter Holidays. She says in this writing assignment she tried to type using both hands, which she did a great job! I did not learn to type with both hands until the 10th grade. Her blog post said:

Camping On the first day of the holidays I went camping it was really awesome because we were able to have a fire and roast marshmallows. They were delicious and gooey with a creamy taste to them. It took camping spot but the good thing was we saw some kangaroos jumping behind the trees in the distance it was a beautiful sight to see and I could see the mountains in the foggy distance.It took almost five hours to get to our camping spot.

The Movies “It’s about to start !”I said to my sister as she sat down in her seat “OK OK “she said quietly. I could hear whispering all around me and I could also hear babies crying and it was annoying as I just wanted to get up and yell be quiet but finally they settled. I went to sees The Croods at Village Cinemas it was awesome and if I had to rate it out of ten I would give it a ten out of ten.

The Otways It was a really cold day and an awesome day too because I went to the Otways, it was fun. I was so cold I could wear three coats and hats and one pair of gloves. As we were walking we saw a dinosaur path that shows you models of dinosaurs they were really small but it was fun to get to run around. There was a cafe there to that’s where we had hot chips and played on the playground .In the playground there was a bus type thing we were allowed to play on it witch was cool I really loved it because we got to pretend to drive it around. We played a princess game and the others had to come and rescue me I loved it so much.

My response to her post was:

Hi Rochelle! My name is Jamie Lynn Barbour and I am a college student at the University of South Alabama. I am visiting your blog from Mobile, Alabama. I have a class blog also and you can view it here. It sounds like you had a lot of fun on your Easter holidays. I think you did a great job typing with both hands. I did not learn how to type with both hands until 10th grade, so good job. That’s so cool that you saw Kangaroos camping. Did you enjoy your camping trip? I wish I could go camping in Australia! I really want to see the Croods too! If you gave it a ten out of ten it must be great. What exactly is the Otways? Is it like a museum where you learn neat things? I think you did a great job on your blog! Keep up the good work and good luck on the rest of your 4th grade year.

I thanked her and left a link to my blog.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Blog Post Assignment #13

The Blended Learning Cycle
Blender with cellphone, computers, books, other sources of technology around it to represent blended learning
Blended learning combines on-line, mobile, and classroom learning together into one classroom. It also blends the Learning Cycle which is made up of the 5 E's: Engage, Explore, Explain, Expand, and Evaluate. All of these things combined make up blended learning. There are 6 parts to Paul Anderson's blended learning cycle. First it starts out with a really good question. Then you want your students to investigate. The 3rd step is a video with further instructions or directions. The next step is to elaborate like with further reading or diagrams. The next step is to review what you have learned so far. The last step is the summary quiz, which is given once he feels like the students know what they are talking about. After about 5 Learning Cycles, Mr. Anderson gives a paper and pencil unit test on all 5 Learning Cycles.

Blended Learning Cycle screen shot from Mr. Paul Anderson's you tube video

I actually like Mr. Anderson's blended learning cycle. It seems like even though the steps are in order the students are still able to learn at their own pace. This is great for students because if you are stuck on something difficult then you have to take the time to really understand it before moving forward to the next step in the learning process, which makes sure you understand something well, before starting something new. Plus it gives you one on one review time with the teacher so it kind of gives you an example of what types of questions may be asked for the unit test. Maybe things would have been less difficult for me in math and chemistry if some of my teachers had followed this type of blended learning. I really like it. I'm not sure how it would work in a kindergarten or 1st grade classroom. I'm sure some variation of it could be done in simpler terms. Hopefully my classroom will be equipped with the technology to allow my students to learn in this type of way.

Hot Air Balloons
Back to the Future by Brian Crosby
So I was one of the students who thought there was only one part to Blog Post #13 and am now doing the first part of the blog post that I missed. Brian Crosby is a teacher at Agnes Risley Elementary School, in Sparks, Nevada. 90% of his students are 2nd Language Learners and live in poverty. They have a 1:1 laptop ratio in the classroom and all students have their own blog. His class is involved in interactive learning. Students were asked to write stories as if they were a hot air balloon and write from the view point of the balloon. The project was called the High Hopes Altitude Balloon Project. They sent their hopes up in the balloon. They then posted their stories and the illustrations to their blogs. They received so many comments form all over they decided to ask people to send in their high hopes to send up in a balloon as well. They sent the balloon up with every one's high hopes. There was a camera on board so the kids could see the view point of the balloon on the journey above the stratosphere. It was really really cool to see that the balloon traveled so high up and to be able to map it on Google maps. His classroom is empowering kids to want to learn on their own. They're connecting themselves to the world. It was really cool to see that a student with Leukemia was also participating in the classroom activities from home. That was really touching to me.

I really enjoyed seeing how the project turned out in Mr. Crosby's class. I think that is a really cool way of teaching and learning in a classroom. The more interesting you can make it, the more they learn in my opinion. They even learn without realizing they are learning. I think all classroom should be interactive learning environments. I also wish all students could have their own laptops but that just does not happen at every school unfortunately. I hope to make my classroom fun and exciting like Mr. Crosby's and I hope my kids are able to use the technology in class like his kids are using.

Progress Report on Final Project

Final Project in wordsOur group January has had one meeting to discuss the Final Project. We are doing a video tutorial on how to navigate through setting up the blog through blogger. And hopefully if time permits how to do the first blog post with picture and links. We will meet again to video our tutorial next Tuesday.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Blog Post Assignment #12

Prezi Logo in BlueFor this blog post assignment I chose to re-do my About Me Google Presentation in Prezi. Prezi is an on-line presentation tool. It's very similar to Power Point and you can even import presentations from Power Point to Prezi. Prezi just visually flows through the presentation way cooler than Power Point, in my opinion. You can start from scratch or use a pre-made template through Prezi. So I think Dr. Strange should have assigned us to go and create an "About Me" Presentation using Prezi. Be sure to include pictures if you want. Just tell us a little bit about yourself and your interests and what you like to do. I have never used it before and saw another student do a presentation with it in another one of my education courses. I thought it was a really cool way to do a presentation and one that I will definitely use in my future classroom. Here's my About Me Presentation in Prezi: Click Here

Saturday, April 6, 2013

C4T #3

Teacher Blogs Colorful Banner

My C4T #3 assignment was on the blog titled What Now? What Next? So what? I tried looking up the teacher's name but all it said under the About section was, "I teach year 3 class in Hamilton, New Zealand." The only name given is the one Dr. Strange included in the C4T assignment spreadsheet which was @teachernz.

PaCT with the Devil

PaCT with the Devil is a blog post in response to another blog post by Tara found here. PaCT is a tool being developed to bring consistency to overall teacher judgements. The developers of PaCT are trying to make a school system where "a child can exit one school and enter another one (armed with his/her number) and the teacher can keep going from the point where his other teacher left off." (Tara) The problem with PaCT is that it assumes that all teachers teach the same things, the same ways, at all times, but this is not true. PaCT sounds a lot like the United States' version of the Common Core State Standards.

My response to Teachernz's blog post was:

Hi Teachernz!

My name is Jamie Lynn Barbour and I am an education in major in elementary education, at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I am one of Dr. Strange's EDM310 students.

I agree with your post that all students learn and understand concepts at a different pace and in different ways. There are all types of different learners just like there are a variety of different types of teachers. Teachers teach each of their classrooms and students in different ways. That is what makes learning fun. That is also what makes our teachers unique.

It sounds like PaCT is similar to the US version of Common Core Standards. The CCS focuses on core conceptual understandings and procedures starting in the early grades, [which enables] teachers to take the time needed to teach core concepts and procedures well—and to give students the opportunity to master them (Common Core State Standards). I think that the more regulated teaching becomes the less effect our teaching has on students.

Thanks for your post. You can check out my blog here. Thanks so much, Jamie Lynn Barbour

There was no new blog post to this teacher's blog so I read an older one called, Tears. This blog post was about one of her students who took time out of class to plant trees for Arbor Day. She did not get a chance to talk to him when he returned to class. So he tweeted her a "Hey" and said he would post a document about his day planting trees. It had been a long stressful week but the fact that he made a document about his day and tweeted it to his teacher made her well up with tears. He tweets and follows her with permission from his parents and he is only 9 years old.

Arbor Day picture of hand holding a tree My response to Teachernz's post was:

Hi Teachernz!

My name is Jamie Lynn Barbour and I am student at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I am one of Dr. Strange's EDM310 students. I thought this post about your student was very touching. I think that it's a great thing when kids get involved at a young age with philanthropic work. Giving back to the community is really important. I also think that it is really cool that your 9 year old student is a technologically advanced independent learner. He just up and created a document about his planting trees all on his own and shared it with you through Twitter. What an amazing kid! I hope one day my students will want to follow and look up to me as a teacher like your students do you. Thanks for sharing.

Blog Post Assignment #11

Little Kids...Big Potential

Little Kids Big Potential was a You Tube video about the technology used in Mrs. Kathy Cassidy's classroom. She is a first grade teacher in Canada. Her students use lots of technology in her classroom. The students each have a blog that they really enjoy working on. They also get to other educational sites through a class website that they can also access from home. When they want to learn about different topics such as, traditions, they post to a Wikis page and invite others to post about their traditions so they will have a better understanding of what it means. They also use Skype to interview people and communicate with other classrooms.

Educational Video Game Screenshot
I really like that Mrs. Cassidy uses so much technology in her classroom. I will definitely do the same in mine. Hopefully I will be lucky enough to have computers donated to my room as well. I would like for my students to have a class blog so that their family can keep up with the different things they are doing in class. I thought it was really neat that so many of her students received responses from family members to their blog. I think that helps keep the kids excited and interested in learning. I also think it is really cool to have a class web page where my students can go to different educational sites from school or at home. I like the idea of being able to filter what they have access to. That is something that is really important to me. I also think it was really cool to include a Nintendo DS into the curriculum. Kids love video games and when it teaches them something educational in the process that is a plus because they are learning and they don't even realize it. I love the Wii so if I could some how work that into my curriculum I think it is something that my students would really enjoy.

C4K March Summary

C4K child typing at a computer

My C4K #5 assignment was on Ella. Ella is in Ms. Carol Mclaughlin’s second grade class. She wrote a blog post titled “My Dogs”. In this post she talks about her two dogs, Max and Lulu. One day the dogs ran away and she could not find them. She thought the dogs were gone forever and she ran up to her Dad and told him they were lost. They searched all over but could not find Max and Lulu so they just went back home. When they arrived home Max and Lulu were waiting on Ella and her Dad.

My Response to Ella’s blog post was:

Hi Ella! My name is Jamie Barbour and I am a college student at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I am learning how to blog to. You can see my blog here. I also have a dog. She is a yorkie and her name is Dixie. I don’t know what I would do if I lost her. I would be scared just like you. I am glad your dogs came home. I see you are in the second grade. Are you enjoying your second grade year? Are you learning lots of exciting new things? What is your favorite subject. I really enjoyed learning about you in your blog. Keep up the great work! And good luck with the rest of your 2nd Grade year! Thanks so much, Jamie Lynn Barbour

C4K #6

My C4K #6 assignment was on Izzy. Izzy is a 6th grader in Mr. Seyfert's class in Waukesha, Winsconsin. The blog assignment was to post about whether they would like to "hang out" with the main character from their novel. The novel she is reading is called Divergent by Veronica Roth. She wrote a blog post titled, "Wanna Hang Out?" In this assignment Izzy says:

I wouldn’t want to be friends with Tris because she tends to get into trouble a lot. One reason is that she went to visit her brother in Erudite without a Dauntless with her. Also I would be scared of her because she is super tough. She would probably attack me if I did something she didn’t like. (Izzy)

Book Cover of Divergent by Veronica Roth

My response to Izzy's blog post was:

Hi Izzy!

My name is Jamie Lynn Barbour and I am a student at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I am majoring in elementary education. I am also writing a blog and you can find my blog here. How are you enjoying your 6th grade year? I hope you are learning lots of fun and exciting new things this year.

I have not read the novel Divergent yet, but I did go and read a summary of the novel by the author. It sounds like a really interesting book. I wish I would have been assigned this book to read in the 6th grade. I am definitely going to read this book now because your blog makes me want to learn more about it. Did you know they are making Divergent in to a movie? Kate Winslet will star in it.

You are doing great on your blog. Keep up the good work! I hope you enjoy the rest of your novel and the rest of your 6th grade year. Thanks so much, Jamie Lynn Barbour

C4K #7

My C4K #7 assignment was on Kevin V and he is in Ms. Lentine's class. His assignment was to write a reflection blog about the autism documentary that the class watched called, "Wretches and Jabbers." Kevin wrote:

Now that I have seen the movie I have learned that there is a lot of people affected by autism before I thought it was just a few. Now that I know this I think it is incredible that people with autism are helping others with it.. I think that by them helping others they will not feel as outcast. It is good that they are able to type to communicate. Are they still going around to help people?

My response to Kevin V.'s blog was:

My name is Jamie Lynn Barbour and I am and I am a student at the University of South Alabama, in Mobile, Alabama. I am studying to be an elementary school teacher. I also have a blog and you can find it here. I have not watched this documentary yet so I have learned a little about it by reading yours and your teacher’s blog. Did you enjoy the documentary? Did it teach you some things that you did not know about autism? I also think it is great that people with autism are helping others with it. I hope you enjoy the rest of your school year. Keep up the great work on your blog.

C4K #8

My C4K #8 assignment was on Jared. He is an 8th grader in Mrs. Krebs class. He wrote a post about a religious illustration. This is what he said:

For our Religion class we had to find something Jesus said in the bible and make a drawing or edit a picture they found. I did the second one. I picked Luke chapter 15:7. Which says “I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.” What it means to me is that as long as you repent and be sorry God will be happy to have even more because you have made it. It is important to me because all of us are sinners but God will still forgive us and be joyful we made it. Prayer Lord Who save us from sin, Please protect us and help us reach you in heaven, We ask this through your son Jesus Christ.

Jesus in heaven My response to his post was:

Hi Jared! My name is Jamie Lynn Barbour and I am a college student at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I am studying to be an elementary school teacher. I am writing a blog for class as well. You can find my blog here. I love the illustration and scripture you chose to write about. I also really like the Prayer. And I agree with you that we must repent our sins and that God will still forgive us and be joyful we made it. He forgives everything because he is an Awesome God! Do you enjoy your religion class? I wish I would have attended a school that had a religion course. I love learning new things about religion. Are you having a great 8th grade year? I hope so. It looks like you must really like basketball from your blog layout. Do you play? Keep up the great work on your blog! I hope you continue to learn new things about Christ. Good luck the rest of your 8th grade year!

I thanked him and left my blog link.