Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tool # 11

I really enjoyed learning and using all the tools I have learned about and used during 11 tools.  I hope to try and use all of them throughout the year.  I discovered a lot a great learning tools.  One of my favorite tools I discovered was the Wallwisher.  I love the idea a great collaborative workspace. I love that we can organize thoughts, ideas, and the things everyone has learned. I would love to use Wallwisher for children to communicate their thoughts about any topic/unit/lesson covered in class.They can post comments about what they have learned. They can learn from reading other classmates comments. I could also use this as a form of assessment at the end of a unit.

My thinking has definitely changed throughout this process. I was dreading doing the 11Tools because I am not very strong in technology.  I am happy I have completed it and am proud of myself for doing so. I am always a little hesitant and nervous about exploring technology because I feel like I don't catch on as quickly as I do with other stuff, nor am I great at it. 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 from this program was that I actually enjoyed doing it.  I'm proud that I have finally completed it and that I learned many great things from it.  I really look forward to using a lot of the great tools I found during this process in my classroom this year.

Tool # 10

The main things I want to make sure my students understand about being good digital citizens are:

  1. Not to give out personal information
  2. To keep their SBISD ID/password a secret
  3. To check with a teacher or parent before going to a website, creating an account online, or downloading an app (even if it is a free app)
I plan to show the Brainpop and Brainpop Jr. video that is available for teaching internet safety and proper usage.  It has great lessons on how to use the computer correctly and safely. 

To "teach" the idea of digital citizenship to my students, I would use modeling. I could use the activeboard and show examples of what could happen while researching a topic or looking for a website.  I would model how to properly research, or what to do if something strange or inappropriate happens.

I would use curriculum night as a good time to share the idea of digital citizenship with parents. I will definitely have a 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 technology in with your objective.  If technology doesn't fit the lesson, it can confuse some children and they just end up '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 a very important part of the learning that takes place in the classroom. It helps them to see that what they are doing is important. 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 liked Thinkfinity and Learning Games for Kids.  Since there are so many games on these sites (which can be a little overwhelming), students could write a review of the games that are played for accountability.  The review could have the title of the game, the category or how to find the game on the site, and a few sentences about the game for peers.  These student reviews can be sorted by objective, so students can find an appropriate game during stations.  Several of the activities have things that can be printed, so students need to know the expectations of printer use.

Apps I liked and will use:
Number Find Lite- I can use this when learning about number patterns in math. I can be an option in my math workstations. The children will mark the date they complete this station as a way to hold them accountable.
iBird lite- I can 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. The children willl enjoy being with other children and learning from each other. 

Tool # 8

1. I learned that I am supposed to download all apps and content to my laptop and then sync the iPads in my classroom.
2. I learned how to name and sync the iPad.  I now have one named iPad with a few apps on it.
3. I learned how to access approved SBISD apps.

I plan to set a technology rotation schedule as part of literacy and math stations.  This will allow all students equal access to the devices in our classroom.  I think having "technology experts" is a great idea that will allow students to solve technology issues.

I will teach the children how to care for the devices and use them properly. I will also have a classroom helper learn how to be responsible for charging and storing the devices properly. 

Tool # 7

Objective: TLW analyze nonfiction text features by finding examples and determining the author's purpose for using the text feature.

Implementation: This project will be implemented in the fall semester.

Tools: Diigo, Google Docs, SkypeWallwisher 

Project Plan: Students will access websites through Diigo and will use the Diigolet tools to highlight nonfiction text features and add a sticky note to explain the reason the author used the highlighted text feature.  Diigo will also be used for students to visit other groups' projects.  Students will plan and collaborate with group members using Google Docs and Skype. Wallwisher will be used at the end of the project as a refection to discuss information learned, the effectiveness of the technology used, and the effectiveness of the collaboration. 

Collaboration: Almost every grade teaches or reviews nonfiction text features, so this project could be done with a classroom within the grade or across grade levels.  This is a project that could also be done with book buddies.

Tool # 6

In my classroom, I would use Skype as a free way to open up my classroom. The class could meet new people, talk to experts, share ideas and create amazing learning experiences with teachers and students from around the world.

Wallwisher is a great way for announcements, questions, ideas, etc. Its a great collaborative workspace. It's a great way to organize thoughts, ideas, and things everyone has learned. Wallwisher could be a great way for children to communicate their thoughts about any topic/unit covered in class.They can post comments about what they have learned. They can learn from reading other classmates comments. I could also 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.