“Life is a continue learning process. Each day presents an opportunity for learning.” ― Lailah Gifty Akita
I am someone who finds quotes very inspirational. I know that may sound very cheesy, but it is the truth. I find that quotes can help spark creativity and can give me a lot of motivation. I have quotes posted in my classroom, house, my agenda, and I even have a calendar that gives a motivational message everyday. I thought this quote was a fitting way to begin this blog post about my digital project and EC&I831 Social Media class. This class has been a huge and exciting learning curve for me! Everyday I have been reading everyone’s posts and I am so impressed with my fellow classmates work! They are all fantastic educators and have great ideas to share!! My #eci831 classmates rock!! I have learned about so many great websites, apps, tools, blogs, videos, and resources from everyone. It has provided me with so many opportunities to learn, reflect, and grow as an educator. Thank you so much everyone!
When I was looking for a blogging quote for inspiration to begin this post I stumbled on this website that discussed Blogging with Elementary Students. While I was exploring through the website I came across a link that took me to a post on Ms. Naugle’s Classroom Blog. Her class posted a video to teach their parents how to leave a quality comment when they visit their blog. I really liked the idea of having the students create the video to explain to their parents how to leave a quality comment! This reminded me of the comment that Jenn Stewart-Mitchell left me on my Digital Citizenship Webinar blog. She told me about a great model to keep the conversation going called “the 3 C’s + Q model.” I have talked a little bit about commenting on blogs with my class, but I want to continue discussing that topic and go more depth. My goal is to discuss giving positive comments on blogs with my students next week and look at the model that Jenn told me about more closely with my class. Then once my students understand the process I want to get my students to help create a digital story or video to explain to their parents how to leave a quality comment when they visit our classroom blog.
While exploring Ms. Naugle’s blog I saw that her students created a math journal post to showcase their learning about a math concept they were learning about. My students journal their math thinking in their pause and think journals, but I like the idea of students blogging about math. They could take pictures of their work or manipulatives that they used during math class and then explain their thinking. When I clicked on Bennett’s blog I saw a post that he had created a post about trapezoids and how he used Glogster to help showcase his learning. Has anyone ever used Glogster before? This is the first time that I have ever heard about Glogster so I am going to continue to look more into it and try it out.
Then continuing my journey through exploring the website when I clicked on a science blog I came across another link that I have never heard of before. It was called Thinglink! It allows people to create interactive images! Very cool! I wanted to try using this tool so I signed up for Thinglink and started to explore the tools features. (I now have so many new accounts and passwords that I had to write them all down in a book so I do not forget what passwords I used for each account). On the website I began to search through all the different creations that people had made. I liked the creations that used a variety of images to link to, but I have no clue how they added in so many images. Yikes! But, yahoo for being able to find the answers on the internet. I am someone who learns best my watching someone show me the steps so I turned to YouTube. On YouTube I searched how to add multiple images in Thinglink and I found this video on youtube. I never would have thought to use publisher to create my college of pictures to help me create what I had envisioned in my head. I decided that I would keep it simple for my first time using this tool so I created an all about me page. I took different photographs of my stuff to help make my creation come to life. I was impressed that it did not take me long to put together once I collected all of the pictures that I wanted. I insert my photographs into publisher and placed them how I wanted the images to appear. After I grouped the images together like the YouTube video instructed me to do and I saved my image. It made it easy to insert my image into Thinglink and then all I had to do was insert the links that I wanted for each of the images. Check out creation that I made using Thinglink and let me know what you think!
I am glad that exploring through the blog gave me some new ideas to use in my classroom to help my students continue to add to our classroom blog in different ways. I was getting a little bit frustrated with myself because I did not get everything accomplished for my classroom blog like I wanted to and discussed in my previous blog post about my digital project. But, I should have remembered that during report card time our classroom gets so busy so I should have set out smaller goals for myself. This week I was looking forward to getting everything done on my list, but I was out of my classroom sick Thursday and Friday with a chest and sinus infection. I did not know who my substitute was going to be so I did not want to plan my students to blog since they are still learning the blogging routines and not every substitute knows about blogging. I love using technology in my classroom, but it is hard to carry out routines when you are away from the classroom when you are sick or attending different meetings. There are lots of people do not know about the different tools and how to use them so I would not want them to be uncomfortable and it can be very hard to explain what to do as well. I often try to only have my student complete tasks using technology when I am in the classroom, but I have left Smartboard and laptop tasks for the substitutes before because my Smartboard and the laptop cart gets used everyday in my classroom. My fellow colleagues use their Smartboards and the laptops everyday as well so we help each other out when someone is away from school. We each write in our sub plans to talk to our fellow colleagues if the sub is having any technical problems with the Smartboard or laptops. What does everyone else do when they are away from their classroom? Do you still have you the students complete technology tasks when you are away or does it depend on what the task is?
When I saw the image below I thought it was a very fitting way to end my blog. I just need to take a breathe, keep working hard, and carry on blogging. This weekend I am going to reflect by reading the last blog post about what I wanted to accomplish with my project and make a new game plan for the week. To end on a very positive note I was very happy that my students helped me create a new blog post last week about Remembrance Day. This week we also created a post that discussed what my students have learned about germs. So I thrilled that we did add more posts to our classroom blog! I also made sure this week that all of the pictures that were used in our classroom blog posts were cited! Very important to teach to our students to properly give credit to others for their work.
Happy blogging everyone! Stay tuned to what I am planning to achieve this week for my digital project!