Is This The End????

I really do not know where to begin…How do write a final blog post for this amazing class?  I have learned so much through this journey! Only if I had a “Million Hours” like what Raelynn @raelynnsmith sang about in her summary of learning project posted on her blog.

hours

Photo Credit: xTrish via Compfight cc

I enjoyed reading Jason`s blog post entailed…”Summary of Progress?”  I thought that was very clever title and very fitting for the ending of this class.  I agree with Jason that it is only the beginning of our journey.  I am excited to continue to grow as a learner and educator through networked learning and social media.

Here are some of the things that I have discovered and learned about during this #eci831 class.

discover

Photo Credit: woodleywonderworks via Compfight cc

As I mentioned in my introduction for my summary of learning video I was a little bit overwhelmed at the beginning of the semester because I did not know about blackboard collaborate, Google Plus, Twitter, and I had no clue what a hashtag was.


I was a little bit unsure of blackboard collaborate at first.  A few mentioned that they were  overwhelmed with listening to the presenter while reading the chat.  I could relate because while listening in on the first few sessions I felt…sensory overload!  After the first couple of classes I felted that it got a little bit easier to multitask!  Plus once I got to know everyone I started to feel more relaxed about sharing my opinions.  I thought it was very beneficial that I could re-watch the class especially when the chat got me side tracked and I missed a few key points mentioned by the presenter.  So thanks Katia and Alec for recording our sessions!

IMG_4034

From taking this class now I know about webinars!  I was lucky to participate in two webinars this semester.  It was so easy to sign up for a webinar and there are so many free webinars offered!  It is amazing that you can choose to participate in fantastic professional development opportunities without having to pay, travel, or miss a day of school for PD.  (Planning for a sub is not always easy either!)  Have a look at two of my older blog posts called “Digital Citizenship Webinar…” and “Marking, and Reporting, and Blogging…Oh My!”  In both of these posts I discuss my experiences attending the two webinars from this semester!  I encourage you to check them out!

im totally blogging this

Photo Credit: agahran via Compfight cc

 The one area in the class that I feel I have the most knowledge in now is blogging.  It has become more of my area of expertise compared to the other tools that I have used in this class.  I have spent countless hours reading about student blogging, exploring other classroom blogs, and exploring the Edublog guide to give me direction in what to do when blogging in my classroom with my students.  Here are just a few resources that I have used and read to learn more about blogging and digital citizenship:

*”Blogging? It’s Elementary, My Dear Watson!”

*”How blogs motivate students to write, read, create art, & use technology

*”Introducing Social Media to Elementary Students

*”Blogging with Elementary Students

*”Media Smarts

*”Common Sense Media

I am so happy that I took blogging on as my major digital project! I am very proud of myself and the progress I have made personally in blogging.  As well as teaching digital citizenship and blogging skills to my students.  Check out my classroom blog! My student`s would love to hear what you think of their work!

I decided to create a screencast of my personal blog showcasing everything that I have learned about blogging in these past few months.  So please check out my screencast below and tell me what you think!

graduate twitter
Photo Credit: mkhmarketing via Compfight cc

 I am not a scholar of Twitter yet, but I am starting to know how to navigate my way around Twitter.  As I discussed in a previous post “My Thoughts About Twitter…” I am glad that this class had me sign up for Twitter.  I never would have been exposed to all the benefits that Twitter has to offer!  By reading people`s tweets I have discovered great resources, learned about webinars, and met fantastic educators from the different Twitter chats that I participated in (#irachat, #saskedchat, and #ttog).  I need to find some more chats to participate in because right now I have curling Thursday nights so I am not able to participate in #saskedchats live.  I am thankful that I have learned about Tweetdeck as it has made it easier to follow everyone`s tweets.  I feel like I am still a newly hatch bird still exploring Twitter, but I am excited to continue to use this tool!  Twitter opens the door for many great possibilities for Professional Development!

hatching twitter
Photo Credit: mkhmarketing via Compfight cc

 I had the privilege of listening to so many great presenters on Tuesday nights!  Each person taught me a lot about networking, social media, and digital learning.  I could be here for hours recapping all that I have learned from each presenter.  You can explore all my reflection posts on my personal blog.  On each of those posts I reflected on what I learned about during my Tuesday night classes from the guest speakers.  Student blogging, rhizomatic learning, network identities, and the marker movement are just a few of the topics that I learned about on Tuesday nights.  You can also take a look at my summary of learning project!  For my summary of learning project I had so much fun creating this presentation and revisiting everything that I have learned about during this semester!

http://prezi.com/embed/ow2kixggggtm/?bgcolor=ffffff&lock_to_path=0&autoplay=0&autohide_ctrls=0&features=undefined&token=undefined&disabled_features=undefined

IMG_4039Photo Credit: I took this picture of our Google Plus website with my iPhone

Google Plus is an excellent way to share your learning and a great place to connect to other people.  I am going to encourage other people to use Google Plus!  It has allowed me to connect and learn from some amazing educators in this class.  I was very thankful to learn about the Google Plus app for my iPhone.  It made it easier to stay connected and read everyone’s posts on a more ongoing basis.  From reading my fellow classmates blog posts on the Blog Hub and on Google Plus I learned a lot about MOOC’s.  From reading their posts has made me want to take a MOOC sometime in the near future.  I enjoyed reading about everyone`s experiences that took a MOOC and I am looking forward to seeing what MOOC`s are available for me to help me continue to grow professionally as an educator.

I want to take this time to thank all of my fellow classmates in my EC&I831 Social Media Class!  Boy it has been an amazing adventure.  I learned not only from the guest speakers, the articles that I read, and the videos that I found, but I have learned so much from each and everyone of you!  I have enjoyed reading your blog posts, tweets, and your ideas that you have shared on our Google Plus community website.  I want to send out a extra shoot out to Andrea NeederDanielle Degelman, Jaylene Brass, Jennifer Stewart-Mitchell, Kelly Brezinski, Lisa K, Kelly Christopherson, Raelynn Smith, and Ryan Hicks for all your feedback and for teaching me so much these past few months!  Finally thank you so much Katia and Alec for an incredible class!  I appreciated all of your knowledge, guidance, and support throughout this journey!

 social graph
Photo Credit: Matthew Burpee via Compfight cc

I can relate to Ryan’s blog post “Trying to stay connected…”  I do not want this class to be over either! I have learned so much from this class as I can apply everything that I have learned about to my daily life and in my classroom.  I am proud that I have finished this class because that means I am one more class closer to reaching my goal of getting my Master’s in Education Degree.  I am hoping that this is not going to be the end!  The joy of this class is that we are still able to share with one another through social media.  Even though this class is over does not mean the blogging, tweeting, and sharing needs to end! I look forward to continue to follow everyone’s journey and stay connected in the digital world!

Best wishes to everyone! I wish you a Merry Christmas !  Have a safe and happy holiday with your family!! 🙂

merry snowman

Photo Credit: amee@work via Compfight cc

How Do You Learn??

On Tuesday, November 25th Dr. Alec Couros @courosa was the last presenter for our Social Media #ECI831 class.  I thought it was quite fitting because he started us on this journey through networked learning and was the one to wrap up the discussion while leaving us with some questions to think about…

 This class has made me into a believer that networked learning can lead you into so many possibilities!  It allows us to continue to grow as learners and to grow professionally as well!

#Lifelonglearner!

networked learning

Photo Credit: Picture taken from Alec’s slide

When Alec discussed with us to reflect on the process of learning I thought about many aspects of my years in education.  I thought about how I learned as a child, in middle years, and then in high school.  I also reminisced in how the classroom was set up, the projects that we did, and how I interacted with my peers.  The learning process continue to change in university for me depending on the classes that I was taking….My electives that I took were a lot different compared to my education class.  My education classes opened my eyes onto the different kinds of multiple intelligences and ways of learning.  I remember completing a coloured spectrum inventory in university during my third year.  It was very interesting to see what colours everyone had and comparing the results especially between the elementary, middle years, and high school pre-service teachers.  Here were my scores:

Primary Colour- Relationship Blue

Secondary Colour- Organized Yellow

Third Colour- Action Red

Fourth Colour- Conceptual Green

Many of the elementary teachers scored blue as their primary colour.  While middle years teachers scored red and secondary teachers scored green as their primary colour.  Have you ever taken one of those inventories before?  What colour would best represent you?

In my EC&I804 Curriculum Development class my professor had us at the beginning of the class complete a teaching and educational philosophy inventory.  We had to choose two of the inventories to complete and then share with everyone the results.  I really liked the inventories so I saved a copy of the ice breaker task on my computer so I would be able to go back to complete the inventories again.  I am curious to see if my results will change from more years of experience and taking more masters classes.  Here is a copy of the task that my professor gave us word for word:

  • Identifying Your Educational Philosophy: Development of the Philosophies Held by Instructors of Lifelong-learners (PHIL) by G.J. Conti http://www.conti-creations.com/phil_guide.pdf: an article precedes the actual philosophical instrument, which can be found on the last two pages of the article; it is probably best to print out these two pages and fold the pages according to instructions; then proceed to go through the PHIL instrument to determine your philosophy.
  • Authenticating Education (Dr. Robert Leahy): http://www.authenticeducating.com/education-philosophy-inventory/: an inventory consisting of 36 questions with a 1-5 agree/disagree scale; select one radio button for each question and then press submit to obtain your inventory results.
  • Teaching Perspectives Inventory (Pratt & Collins): http://teachingperspectives.com/drupal/take-survey: a 45-item inventory that provides a graphical and text-based interpretation based on the “Five Perspectives” book, by the same authors.
  • Philosophy of Adult Education Inventory (PAEI): http://ctl810.wikispaces.com/file/view/paei.tex.pdf: a 15-item inventory that is quite thorough and provides the user with the tools to interpret responses; this PAEI is adapted from Zinn, L.M. (1990).

picture of miss stephanson

Photo Credit: This is a picture of me that was taken on our school picture day last year

For the Teaching Perspectives Inventory (TPI) I scored the highest in nurturing followed by transmission and for the Philosophy of Adult Education Inventory (PAEI) I scored the highest in humanistic followed by behaviorist. I was not surprised by the results because I believe in forming positive relationships with my class so I can get to know each of my students to plan around their interests and build their self-confidence so each child can begin to take responsibility in his or her own learning. I also believe it is important for students to take an active role in their learning, but there also needs to be a balance so I see myself connecting to many of the other philosophies as well to differentiate and reach all of my student’s needs.

I think it is important to reflect on your philosophy! As I mentioned in my “I’m Digital Learning……and Now I Show It” post I wish I had my original copy of my philosophy of education.  I am curious to be able to compare them together.  I believe it is vital as an educator to keep revisiting our philosophy of education and learning.  Everyone is unique just like how our learning and teaching styles are different from student to teacher.   But, as mentioned in a picture and question that Alec posted on the presentation we can not limit our students.  We need to sometimes stop and think outside of our boxes and try to teach in a different way to provide our students the chance to learn in a way that meets their needs. (This quote from Alec’s presentation stuck out in my mind as well Jessica.)

dont limit child

Photo Credit: Picture taken from Alec’s slide

I am so happy that education is starting to catch up and teachers are beginning to change their thinking and are transforming to the 21st century way of learning and teaching.  More and more classrooms are moving away from students sitting in rows and learning on the own.  Students are starting to be provided with opportunities to make connections and learn from their peers and other amazing resources besides text books.  Social Media now even opens more doors for students to connect and share their learning with others! I could not imagine teaching in the classroom in the picture below.  “MYOB Learning” stands for “mind your own business” learning.
dont limit child

Photo Credit: Picture taken from Alec’s slide

 
What do you see when you look at the picture above??

I see a dull boring classroom where there is no spark or energy in the room.  The space is NOT stimulating or dynamic!  One of the principles of early learning explores the environment piece in a classroom.  To learn more about the principles of early learning check out one of my previous blog posts.  It appears in this photo that students are not able/encouraged to connect or communicate with one another.  We do not make surgeons go into the operating room alone and without collaborating with others…so why do some educators believe that students must learn alone?  If I am unsure about what to do with a student who is struggling I ask a fellow colleague for suggestions, ask for advice and get some help.  So why do some teachers not provide their students the opportunities to ask their peers questions about their learning and collaborate with others?  I think it is important to make sure you assess students knowledge, but there are so many ways to provide opportunities for students to show case their learning.  This #eci831 class was a great example providing students the possibility of choice.  We got to choose our own projects and decide on how we were going to show case our learning (Genius hour/Rhizomatic learning).  Some students projects were very hands on allowing students to become makers.  We were also provided with a variety of different tools to use to show case our learning such as our blog, Google Plus, and Twitter.  Yes we were to use all three, but if we favoured one over the other that was okay.  In the class we were provided with more choices for our summary of learning project.  We just needed to follow the brief outline for the project, but the doors were wide open and we were able to chose what format we wanted to make our presentation in.  In my classroom I provide I little bit of choice, but that is one area that I want to continue to develop, especially in the later half of the year in my classroom.

How I am learning both online and off line spaces?

As I have mentioned in previous blog posts and throughout this class I am a visual learner.  I learn best through watching someone demonstrate a skill.  Learning through Social Media and the internet has allowed me to have all kinds of opportunities to learn through looking at pictures, diagrams, read blogs/articles and watch videos.  I like how I can leave comments on people’s posts and that others can leave me comments giving me advice or feedback on my work.  I think a down side is how much time it can take to find the correct resource or losing time while exploring and viewing all the different resources.  I do not want to take away all my time while being on social media…I need to have time to be a fiancé, teacher, daughter, sister, and friend.  One of the down side with learning online is that I am also a social butterfly and sometimes I struggle with being concise when blogging or typing my thoughts.  At times when I type I begin to ramble and struggle getting to my point.  There were times that found it hard to showcase my work through the digital world without having glitches with technology.  I did enjoy our final class last Tuesday. (Thanks Alec and Katia for the pizza again! )  It was wonderful to get a chance to meet everyone officially who was able to attend.  It was also a little bit strange to walk into a room and feel like you know the person without formally meeting them in person before.  I enjoyed this class being online because I did not have to drive on the highway to get to class for four hours in my evening I  was able to attend class from the comfort of my home.  Students were also able to participate in class while being away from home by using their cells.  I think it would be nice to have at least one more face to face class.  We had such a good discussion last Tuesday from what we were learning about.  Time just flew by so I think it would have been neat to have had one face to face class in the middle of the semester as well.  I think we did have an amazing class as we also had so many people asking questions and commenting throughout our Tuesday night class on black board collaborate and also on Titter, Google Plus, and on our blogs.

question about students

Photo Credit: Picture taken from Alec’s slide

    I think as educators we need to start doing a better job of “preparing students for the type of world they currently live in.”  Educators need to have this discussion as a staff and it needs to be explored further at a division level.  Our world is evolving and occupations are not the same as they use to be.  Each jobs now require their employees to have more of a variety of skills set depending on the what the career is.  I really appreciated having our discussion last Tuesday night about what do we do next.  I think so many people are not educated in Social Media and the digital world. Teachers need to be provided with professional develop opportunities to learn more about teaching students to be positive digital citizens.  We can not keep our door such and avoid social networks.  Now is the time to  educate our students about digital citizenship!  Starting at a young age students need to be aware of their digital footprint and how that can shape their world.  Students need to be given time to reflect on what kinds of footprints they would like to leave on the world.  I think their are so many possibilities now in education! Please check out this video below that Alec shared with us at the end of his presentation.  This proves to power of connected learning!

http://www.tubechop.com/watch/4209267
question about living in the connect relatily

Photo Credit: Picture taken from Alec’s slide

This class has taught me the importance of making my learning and thoughts visible.  We need to continue to share and grow as learners…By making our thinking and learning visible for others to view.  In closing to find the answer to Alec’s final question presented above in how I am living and learning in our connected reality…please check our my Summary of Learning Project!  I discuss this question in the conclusion of my project!  Enjoy! 🙂

http://prezi.com/embed/ow2kixggggtm/?bgcolor=ffffff&lock_to_path=0&autoplay=0&autohide_ctrls=0&features=undefined&token=undefined&disabled_features=undefined

But, more importantly I would like to know….”How are you living and learning in our connected reality.”

I encourage you to leave your thoughts on Networked Identities and tell me your answer to Alec’s question! Thanks!

 

Who Has Amazing Students In Their Class??? This Teacher Does!!!!

amazing

  Photo Credit: Camdiluv ♥ via Compfight cc

I have EIGHTEEN AMAZING Secret Agents Students in my grade two classroom!  I am so proud of each of my students.  They never cease to amaze me each and everyday.  Lots of people do not know how capable young students are!  Some people were nervous about me starting blogging with my young students.  Some people commented…Will they be able to log on?  Won’t it take a while for them to type out their posts? Will students be able to follow the directions on what to do on the blog?  When students are younger they are more confident because they are not as a afraid of trying something new.  Everything is so exciting in their eyes!  Blogging has been very exciting in my classroom! I am so thankful for having supportive parents and staff.  They have made this project very enjoyable so far and I am looking forward to seeing where blogging takes us in our grade two learning and blogging journey.

Please check out my screencast!  You will get a chance to see a tour of four of my student’s individual learning blogs!  An extra special shout out to those students and their families for signing off and giving me permission to screencast their individual blogs.  In this screencast you will get to see some examples of posts that they students have wrote, pictures that have been added as well as some student work that has been posted.

Please let me know what you think! If you have any ideas of what I could do or suggestions that would mean a lot to me.  Thanks so much!

**My student’s would also love it if you leave a comment on our classroom blog or on their individual learning blogs! 🙂

Check It Out!! A Video Tour Of My Classroom Blog…

microphone

Photo Credit: fensterbme via Compfight cc

Hello Hello!! I have completed screencasts before and I think it is a fantastic way to showcase your learning!  I am very passionate about teaching reading and I wanted to learn more about Literacy Development.  So for my EC&I804 Curriculum and Development class I created a script of what I was going to say and a presentation to showcase my findings for my research question “What should early year’s teachers focus on to promote literacy development?”

I was very happy with how my project turned out.  The only thing I would want to change is to slow down how fast I was talking in that video.  We had a time limit of eight minutes so I needed to talk fast to make sure I had time to fit everything into my video to show all of my findings.  To create the video I used Screencast-O-Matic to record my audio and images of my slides for my project.  Then I posted my project onto Youtube!  That was the first time that I have ever posted anything onto Youtube before.  Now I have two other videos on Youtube.  One video is my summary of learning introduction and the other video is me explaining my Prezi presentation.  It can be a little scary at first putting your work on the Internet to the world to see, but this class has allowed me to feel more confident in sharing my learning through using different social media tools.

This weekend I did my very first screencast without having a script of what I was going to say.  That is a huge change for me as I am someone that likes everything all laid out and planned.  Here is a video of me giving a tour of our classroom blog using Screencast-OMatic.  Please forgive me for some of my pauses and stumbles during this video!  I am hoping to keep practicing Screencasting without writing a script because I know I will not always have time to write a script for every thing video that I record.

I would love to hear your feedback!

What did you think when looking at our classroom blog? Is it easy to navigate and find your way around our classroom blog?  Is there any more widgets that I should add onto our blog?  Do you have any suggestions for me about student blogging?

Thanks so much everyone! 🙂

So….What’s Next?

grade 2

Photo Credit: Enokson via Compfight cc

It has been a very busy few weeks in my Grade Two Classroom! My Secret Agents have been learning so much!  I am so proud of their growth and I am excited to continue to watch them expand their thinking and explore the world.

In my last post “Who’s Excited For This Week??? This Teacher Is!!!” I spent time reflecting what I have done so far in my classroom blog.  Since my previous post we have added some posts onto our Classroom Blog and my student’s individual blogs.

class blog

My Classroom Blog:

On our classroom blog we have posted a few more posts as a class.  One post we discussed learning about what good commenters do on a blog.  I got the idea from my EC&I831 classmate Danielle Degelman.  On our discussion page for the Google Plus Community for our #eci831 class she posted a picture and commented that she gave the students sentence starters to help them when they are giving a compliment, creating a comment, making a connection, and asking a question on other people’s blogs.

In another post we talked about even and odd numbers.  My students learned a song called “Odd Todd and Even Steven.”  They enjoyed singing that song so much that we decided to video them singing and posted the video of them singing on the blog.  I was very happy with how easy it was to upload the video onto the blog.  I will continue to add videos onto our classroom blog!

We also posted a blog that discussed my student’s learning projects.  My students and I are looking forward to begin creating their animal projects starting on Tuesday! They have been busy bringing materials from home after I sent a note home explaining the project to my student’s families.  I have not seen so much positive energy from my students this year.  I am hoping to try #GeniusHour sometime later on in the year with my class during learning buddy time.  I think Genius Hour ignites student’s imagination, creativity, and curiosity to explore topic that they want to learn about.

Finally on our classroom blog we posted a brief post showcasing what we have been learning about numbers.  My students have been busy exploring place value, describing numbers, and representing numbers in many different ways.  On Twitter I saw that Sue Waters @suewaters tweeted about being able to add in a picture gallery onto a blog post.  I wanted to try to insert a picture gallery onto one of our classroom blog posts.  One day I went around with my camera and I took some pictures of my students representing numbers using number tiles and base ten blocks on form two part mats.  I followed the steps that were listed on the link and inserted the picture gallery rather easily.  Sue also tweeted about being able to add in tiled galleries onto a blog post.  I am going to follow the instructions on that link and try out the different examples of tiled galleries another time on our classroom blog.

Here is a tour of our classroom blog:

 

My Student’s Individual Blogs:

Most of my students only had an about me page and only a few had art work for the header at the top of their blog.

about me blog page 1

Now my student’s individual blogs are starting to show growth that allows visitors to get to know each of my secret agents a little better.

 

I created a to do list in my previous blog post about my major digital project.  I am very proud that I was able to check everything off of the list and also did a few more things as well!

1. I did upload my student’s self portraits onto their individual blogs.  Their self portrait also became their avatar for their blog as well.  My students are very excited to have their very own avatar on their blog.  They have an avatar on their Mathletics account so they were thrilled to have one for this account too!

self portait
2.  I uploaded pictures of my student’s math increasing pattern work onto their blog. Then student’s added a comment of a description of their pattern explaining the pattern rule.

linking cubes
3.  My secret agents had the opportunity to create a blog post on the topic of their choice.  So many students choose different topics so I encourage you to check it out!  I also had my students blog about what they like about blogging so I was aware of what my students liked about this project.  Then I could get some ideas of what I should do again with my class.

kids posts
4.  This past week my students have been busy beginning their animal project.  They were able to choose an animal or two animals to create their project.  My students will get three afternoons to create their animal.  If my students chose two animals they had to be from the same animal family.  Once they choose their topic my students created a plan for their project.  They drew a picture of what they wanted their animal to look like and then labeled what they were going to use for each part of their project.  Along the side of the plan my students listed what materials they were going to use to create their project.

animal plan
5. Once my students were finished creating their plan they were given time to blog about their project.  Later on I added their plan onto their page.  I was able to copy my students work on the photocopier and email my students work to myself through the photocopier.  When I sent the work to myself I turned the files into PDFs which allowed it to be easier to add the work onto my student’s individual blogs.

animal blog post

6. Some of my students completed some artwork during center time.  After they were finished I help them choose what part of the artwork they wanted to go onto their header of the blog and then we posted it.

art work for blog

7.  Last week after going through what good bloggers do when commenting I modeled to my students what to do.  We went on some different teacher’s classroom blogs and left a comment on their page.  After lots of practice I gave my students time to write their first comment on a friend’s blog.  To make it fair I handed out secret agent number popsicle  sticks from a jar to my students.  Then they went on that friends blog and chose what post to comment on.  It helped out a lot when I gave my student’s sentence starters for the 3 C’s and Q.  (Thanks Danielle for the fabulous idea!!!).  Also one day I gave my students the opportunity to read the comment I left on a post that they wrote.  I wanted each student to have at least one comment on their blog page!  Before the Christmas break I am going to get students commented back to each other and the chance to reply back to me too.   We are still taking baby steps in this area, but we are starting to make progress! Slow and steady wins the race!

Here is a tour highlighting a few of my student’s individual blogs and some of the things that I just talked about in this post:

Blogging is one time of the day that I never hear complaints from my students about having to write.  My students ask about when they get to blog next if it is not on our schedule for the day.  My student’s favourite part is looking at our clusters map on our blog to see who as looked at our classroom blog.  Then we go on a journey on Google Maps to explore what city/town/country that person is from.  I am thrilled to have my students blogging about their animal projects this month.  I think it will allow my students to truly showcase what they know about animals!

My digital project maybe ending for this class, but this is a life long project for me with my students.  I am excited to continue this journey!! I am glad that I took this class so I actually started something that I always wanted to do, but did not have the support or the know how in what to do to get this process started. Through blogging now I am able to see my student’s growth in just a short period of time! Please continue to explore and read our classroom blog! My class would love to hear from you!

But before I go please tell me….How’s Our Blogging??

colourful blog

Photo Credit: manoftaste.de via Compfight cc

Oh Me…Oh My…

oh happy day

Photo Credit: Javcon117* via Compfight cc

Last weekend I put together my EC&I831 Summary of Learning Project.  It was a lot of fun trying some new tools that my fellow classmates talked about in Google Plus and in their blogs.  I am going to use Toontastic and Garage Band forsure in my classroom during center time.  I think they would come up with some great projects and have a lot of fun while doing it.  In my blog called “I’m Digital Learning…..and Now I Show It” I had to do a screencast showing everyone how to watch the first video in my presentation because only four seconds of the video would play and would go to the next path in Prezi.  I was so frustrated and disappointed that it was not working properly.  I was very grateful that I had many people try to help me solve this problem.  On Tuesday night at the end of class Katia @kbhildebrandt help me troubleshoot what the problem could be.  She gave the suggestion to add my video onto Youtube and link my video from Youtube onto my Prezi presentation.  I was so happy and relieved that solved the problem.   When I would play back the presentation in edit mode it works with out having without having to pause it, watch the video, and continue on watching the presentation. I was going to call this blog post Oh Happy Day…but then I put my blog post into preview mode and check out my link one last time.  It still skips the video after four seconds.  But, now you can hit the back arrow button and it will play the whole video.

prezi pic

Here is my  EC&I831 Summary of Learning Project! I hope you enjoy! I have learned so much from this class and I am excited to continue to learn more through MOOCs, Webinars, reading blogs, reading Tweets, and other forms of Social Media! I apologize that I am still not able to solve the problem  🙂

http://prezi.com/embed/ow2kixggggtm/?bgcolor=ffffff&lock_to_path=0&autoplay=0&autohide_ctrls=0&features=undefined&token=undefined&disabled_features=undefined

Will You Be The One To Speak Out??

On November 18th our #eci831 class had the pleasure of listening to Audrey Watters @audreywaters speak to our class.  I encourage you to check out Audrey’s blog.  She has many thought provoking posts! On the night that she spoke to our class I logged onto the class late because I had Student Led Conferences, but that weekend I was able to rewatch the class!  I am able to rewatch the class because Alec and Katia record each session on Black Board Collaborate.  Then send the link to everyone on our class EC&I831 Google Plus Community.  It is so wonderful to have that option!  That was the only class that I arrived late for and missed a bit, but often I would rewatch some of the classes because I forgot what someone said, needed a link, or needed a review of the material.  I am a visual learner so being able to play back to classes is amazing! I hope I have to opportunity again down the road to use Black Board Collaborate in other classes or webinars.  It was so nice not having to travel two hours to Regina, have class, and then travel another two hours back home.

gender

Photo Credit: International Livestock Research Institute via Compfight cc

Now getting back to what Audrey shared to our class…she talked about Gender Equity and Edtech.  During her presentation she discussed #gamergate…I had no idea what that was.  I agreed with some fellow that I am oblivious to that kind of stuff.  Have you heard of gamergate before?  My class talked a little bit in class about it in the session, but still did not have a clear picture.  So read about gamergate on Wipedia.  I could not imagine facing harassment online. Very heavy stuff!  Audrey told us that “the Internet can be a destructive place.”   She went on to say, “That’s an issue that has to be addressed in ed tech” and explained that it is an technology, education, social, and political issue. “We can’t ignore it!” I agree with Audrey hundred percent that the Internet can be destructive.  Like so many things there is the good about it, the bad about it, and then the just plain ugly.  I am very much (try to be) a positive person and try to see the glass half full.  Sure we all have our moments, but I try to surround myself with people who are also positive, supportive, and want to help me reach my goals.  In my social media accounts I try to add and keep people who are positive and weed out the negative people who are pulling my energy down.  I agree that we cannot ignore it, but it can be hard sometimes to speak up online depending on the space.  I try to avoid confrontation online because I also do not want it to affect my career or my digital identity.  When I see my friends post something on Facebook/Twitter that I do not agree with I do not write a comment under his/her post, but I have send a private message or a text to some people before.  Or even better you could have a conversation in person or over the phone!  I find when I read texts, e-mails, or words online it can be hard to tell the tone the writer is trying to portray.  I have many times misinterpreted the message that the writer was trying to get across, but it can be fixed if you have a conversation with the writer.

lens

Photo Credit: Daveography.ca via Compfight cc

Audrey discussed gender and ed tech.  It made me think of my first master’s class when we discussed lens.  Everyone has their own lens based on their gender, ethnicity, where they live, family, etc.  She mentioned that there are more males then females working in ed. tech jobs.  On the chat is was brought up that many positions higher up in the company or job are male.  I have very proud to be a part of the Southeast Cornerstone School Division.  Our Director of Education, Superintendent of Education, and Superintendent of East Schools are all female teachers.  All of them fantastic role models to have in the upper level of our division.  We also have many female consultants and principals in our division.

I think teaching digital citizenship lessons and discuss student’s digital footprint is important to do in school.  Is that the answer? No, but at least it is a start!  We need to create and develop safe places!  If I can get my student’s to “THINK” before they post that would be an amazing start.  I think our blog is wonderful because it allows us to explore the Internet and share our thoughts in a positive way.  I also control the comments section of our blog.  I did change the settings to allow comments to go automatically for this blog. I do not feel comfortable having the same setting for my class blog.  I like being able to control if a comment gets added onto our classroom blog or not.

speak up

Photo Credit: HowardLake via Compfight cc

Common Sense Media has some excellent resources on Digital Citizenship. In the chat on Black Board Collaborate Carmen Holota (@queeniecarmen) mentions that Media Smarts is a good resource.  (I encourage you to check out Carmen’s blog!)  I explored the website and I thought there was some useful resources and tools to help teach a variety of topics.   One of the links was called Gender Representation which made me remember of advertisement about girl image.  A lady asks different people show her “what does it looks like to ____ like a girl?”  It was very interesting to see how the different people represented the statement.  I really liked seeing how they changed how they represented the actions later on in the video.  I found an article discussing this advertisement and it also allows people to video the video.  What did you think after you watched the video? Do you know of other powerful videos that share an important message?

Another section in the Media Smarts website that caught my eye was Body Image under Media Issues.  I think a lot of media does not send a positive message about body image to our youth.  Body image does not affect females, but males as well.  Thinking about body image makes me think of an episode off Glee. (I enjoy watching Glee!)  The episode was called “Born This Way.”  In the episode Rachel hurts her nose and is deciding if she wants to get a nose job or not.  Leading their teacher to create an assignment about singing about their “flaws” and celebrating those differences.  In the episode they sing a song that still gives me goose bumps.  I encourage you to check it out and let me know what you think of the song!

I am very lucky to have such a supportive and amazing parents, siblings, extended family, and friends.  I owe it to them that I have my positive body image that I do!  On April 7th, 1995 changed my life and my family’s life.  I was admitted into Weyburn hospital after going to the doctor because I was not feeling well and had a strange rash on my shoulder.  My doctor did some investigating and sent me to Regina to confirm her diagnosis.  Only being in Regina for maybe two hours I was then rushed to the University Hospital in Saskatoon to be seen my the infectious disease team.  My doctor was correct in her diagnosis and it was confirmed that I have Necrotizing Fasciitis (Flesh Eating Disease).  I went into surgery immediately to stop the infection from spreading.  After they were able to stop the disease from spreading. I then went through several skin graft surgeries.  I was very lucky that my doctor diagnosed me so fast and that I only was in the hospital for a month.  Now I have visible scarring on my chest, right shoulder, and down the right side of my back.  I think because I was only seven it helped me to have a positive body image compared to it was to have happened when I was a teenager or in my early twenties.  Now I am twenty-seven years old and have had my scar for twenty years of my life.  It is a part of my “body footprint” and it shares my story.  I will not hide who I am…I am lucky that I was able to beat the disease and live a healthy and happy life afterwards.  I think it is important to teach students about self-esteem and having a positive body image.  We need to fill everyone’s buckets and show them that they are beautiful just the way they are!  It makes me think of another great song!  Can you tell I like music!  Do you know of any other songs with a powerful message?

So what does this mean?

I agree with Kelly that he mentioned on the chat that we need to keep encouraging and supporting science and technology options and opportunities to our female students.  Hour of Code was also mentioned in the chat.  I am hoping to have my students do the Hour of Code with their learning buddies!  I think it is an excellent idea to do with your students!  As I mentioned earlier we need to continue to teach our students about Digital Citizenship and promoting healthy living.  Not just exercising, eating healthy, and our physical health.  But, we need to also take care of our emotional and mental health as well.

What do you think we should be teaching our students in the topic of gender and EdTech?