Reflection 9- Interactive White Boards

Interactive white boards, also called “smart boards”, have been drastically swapping places with dry erase boards all over the country. Schools have now built these boards in classrooms and teachers basically had to teach themselves how to use them because they are very high tech. I know personally when I was high school, my teachers would only use the boards to project something off of the their computer. I didn’t even know that interactive white boards could do so much more until we had a special guests in class that were experts on them.

Emily Hodge came to give a presentation on all that Smart Boards had to offer. We wrote, played games, and used interactive software that the boards come equipped with. She showed us ways that not only small children could become engaged in the lesson but older students can as well. The Smart Board allows you to use your finger, swoosh ball, or the pen that comes along with it to operate the board. The teacher or presenter can navigate the computer through the board so that presentations can be given more efficiently.

I chose to read “The Art and Science of Teaching/ Teaching with Interactive Whiteboards” article. This article talked about the research that has been conducted on the effect of having an interactive whiteboard in the class. Researchers have not found a lot of conclusions as to whether the boards cause student achievement but they have found that the boards have features that cause direct results. The Smart Boards have features that include learner-response devices, graphics and visuals, and reinforcers. Interactive White Boards are very beneficial to the classroom setting and when used to the most of its capability, can make the teacher’s life easier and the students more academically astound.

Check out this video for a visual of Smart Boards at work in the classroom!

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LADP Documentation #1

         The process of working on the LADP project has not been an easy one. At first we had to chose a topic that would not only be interesting, but also creative and innovative. We wanted our topic to not only engage students, but also provide them with learning content as well as involve them in the process of learning. After we chose the topic, we had to develop an Essential Question that would engage the student’s and get them thinking.

         We started off making a google doc to keep all of our important information for our site. Each group member is an editor so at any time we can go and make changes to the google doc. We encountered trouble when we started working on our actual google site. The google doc is coming in handy because whenever we find something that is useful for the site we can go and post it there for all of us to see. We were having trouble getting the site set up, so one of our group members suggested that we try Weebly. I must say that its great. We haven’t had any problems with Weebly yet and we have things flowing smoothly with our site. Weebly is easy to navigate and upload our information and pictures too. It is still a work in progress however.

Another week passed and we continued to work on our site. We had to present a draft of our site either on a google doc or the actual site. We received feedback from our classmates on the presentation of our site and content of the information. Many of the other students have really good concepts as well and their websites are coming along nicely. We now need to complete our author introduction video and finish all the placement plans for our website.

Reflection 8 (10/16/13)

Project-Based Learning

            Project- based learning is the new trend in education. Personally, I can’t say that I can explicitly remember doing anything like this in school but I have done similar projects on a smaller scale. Before iPhones and apps and all of that became popular, I did a semester long project in the 7th grade that seems similar to project-based learning. This project counted as a grade in my math, science, and English class. We had to research an endangered species then calculate statistics on the prevalence and probability of this animal not going extinct. Then for science we were assessed on what was causing the animal to be endangered and what solutions could we come up with to help the animal get off of the list. For my English class, our essays that accompanied this project were assessed.

            I feel that this was a great way to get a student passionate about something and have them learn things for multiple subjects. The pros about project-based learning would be that it is something that is interesting and it makes the students feel like they are doing real activities instead of busy work. Cons about project-based learning would be that it does take a lot of planning and collaboration amongst teachers, students, and parents.

            I enjoyed reading about the winners of the Imagine Cup contest because their innovations were so good. Personally, I enjoyed that the vision impaired student made an app for note taking because I love when new inventions come out to help the disabled. I like that this contest wanted them to conquer Millennium Developmental Goals, which is really shooting for the stars. The author also mentioned that the use of gaming was big because they wanted these programs to alter reality and have kids think they are just playing. 

Reflection 7 (10/7/13)

The stop animation infomercial was one of the most fun projects I have had throughout my years of schooling. We chose to do our infomercial on Edmodo. Edmodo is a website used in schools to connect the classroom to the home. It is like a Facebook for education because it connects classmates along with teachers together to gain supplemental material. Many perks of Edmodo is that you can turn in your assignments, take practice tests, and hold discussions online. I think that this website is great to use in the classroom because now technology is so prevalent that we have to include it in education to keep the students interested.

 

The other groups in class did such a great job on their stop animation project. They were edited to look very professional and the images were crystal clear. I learned a lot about new websites and apps. My favorite new website/app that I didn’t know much about before was the Google nanny app. I think that it is a great innovation because it can keep students focused while online. Personally, I would use it on my computer and in the classroom. Another website that I enjoyed learning about was Pinterest because usually it is thought of as a distraction website but can actually be used for education. In addition, their infomercial was very good and creative.

I had never made a stop animation video before and now I truly have an appreciation for the ones done professionally for ads. So much work goes into making those videos. The pictures have to be clear, in the same spot, and hundreds of pictures have to be taken just to make it look more and more like a video rather than a slideshow. The pros to this technique are that it is easy to turn into a video and they are fun to watch. The cons would be that the picture taking part is very tedious and matching any kind of music or voiceovers to the pictures is difficult. I would suggest that people adequately manage their time for this project because if you wait until a deadline it could be very stressful.

Reflection 6 (10/2/13)

What is augmented reality? Honestly, before having to do the research required for this reflection and discussion, I had no idea. It is defined as an environment that includes both virtual reality and real world elements. An example of this is the Google glass, which is a pair of glasses that allows you to see the real world along with a computer-generated version. During Jim’s talk, he introduced an app to us called ARIS that is a type of augmented reality. The app allowed for students to use their smartphone to complete a scavenger hunt and at every stop on the hunt a picture of that same spot in history would appear. I thought that was very cool.

Another concept that is pretty popular not only in the mainstream but education as well is QR codes. These are pictures of a square that have black and white specs that lead directly to a URL. This is easily accessible because many students have smartphones and all you really need is a camera on the phone and Internet access. With the codes, teachers can have them linked to quizzes or supplemental material to aid in learning.

As an aspiring speech pathologist, I would definitely want to use augmented reality with my students. I feel that it will be a little overwhelming at first seeing as how it is new to education so most of the activities I will have to design myself. I am up for the challenge though because I know this is a great way to keep the children of this generation interested in learning. The QR codes don’t scare me much because the computer designs the code for you and I am pretty familiar with them. But as an educator, I will become sufficient in whatever I need to be in order to have my students learn as much as possible.

Reflection 5 (9/16/13)

Visual literacy is a very important part of learning especially when children are in their early years. I learned that subjects in school such as art, music, and performing arts are needed in school just as much as the three R’s. Personally, I know that it always helped in school when the teacher would assign for us to do skits to explain whatever material we were learning in school. Actually writing the skit and acting it out helped me visually see the subject apply to reality. Also one time for a project in my AP Calculus class my teacher had do a project where we solved a certain problem then had to make a 3D model of how it could apply to real life. I think these are perfect ways to get kids to love learning.

I enjoyed the part of the article that mentioned a school in San Diego that implements art as a large part of the culture. For example, they have students in physics that build kinetic art with pulleys and they make 21st century resumes. I think the resume is very innovative because it could set the students apart from others when applying for positions and college. It is sad that the art programs are being cut from schools because of funding but I still think it is important for kids to get that enrichment. It is great that teachers can find ways to include visual literacy into the curriculum.

Personally, I enjoy adding photos to our blogs for EDIT 2000 but I do not like to write the essay portion every week. I like to reflect but doing it every week feels like high school. The photos add a nice touch to it because when I view everyone else’s reflection the pictures really keep my attention. I will help others develop their visual literacy by presenting more pictures and employing more performing arts into education.

Reflection 4 (9/09/13)

The Horizon Report I chose to reflect on is the higher education one.  I agree with basically all of the trends in the report. These trends are constantly implemented in the curriculum. Many teachers are now beginning to use tablets in the classroom and for special projects. I believe this is a great piece of technology because it just provides so many alternatives to traditional learning. There are apps and games for any topic in the world. The fact that this concept of technology is becoming more affordable and available to the common student makes it a great tool for learning everywhere.

I enjoyed the trend of Massively Open Online Courses (MOOC). These courses are the meaning of a true learner. They allow for those that want to learn a chance to learn subjects for free. I have actually used this before in my own life. While taking AP classes in high school, I would download free university lectures off of iTunes. They really helped me and were very convenient. These are great because they allow the students who don’t have time to complete a minor or certificate a chance to venture outside of their area of study.

In addition, the trends of gaming and 3D printing were very interesting. Using games for learning isn’t something just reserved for kids anymore. Gaming is a great way to learn while not even notice you are working your brain. Also, 3D printing is very cool because I am a visual learner. So if I can see it in an even realer format, that will help me grasp the material. The article says that it has become more affordable in recent years, which is great for underfunded institutions. I really enjoyed that this report gave trends that are affordable because I think it is important for all students to have access to technology.

Reflection 3 (9/4/13)

1. Which projects do you like the most or which project is the most impressive? Why?

The project that I thought was the most impressive was the one that had the kids go on a scavenger hunt at the Smithsonian. I enjoyed watching this project because you could see how genuinely happy the kids were while still learning. They got to use their creativity and imagination. The video said that kids already have an idea of how museums are, which is that they are boring. I can relate because every trip I took to a museum as a child was to get out of going to school, not for the things the museum had to offer. The cutest concept was when one group of students used the zookeeper idea to help them understand the hunt. They had to go and find the rest of the zoo animals to return back to the zookeeper. The best part was that they used technology to help kids understand other subjects like art, science, or history.

 

2. Do you think you need to sharpen your digital media skills?  What are some challenges for you to use the digital media in your own learning/ teaching?  Maybe it’s the challenges related to resources, time management, curriculum design, your own skills, teachers’ collaboration?

Yes, I believe that I need to sharpen my digital media skills. Everyone could always use a little more learning to progress them to the next level. One of the challenges that I always encounter is my own laziness. I usually try to stick to what I know to get a job done rather than learning how to use a different piece of technology. I usually am too busy to try new things and this puts me at a disadvantage in my digital media skills. I am new to the blogging world so now I have to worry about the actual assignment and turning it in correctly. I have to learn to keep my laptop working as an aid to my education and not a distraction. I wish I could be more profound in editing videos and projects and such.

 

3. Do these projects remind you of some ideas you learned from your reading (meaningful learning with technology chapter 1?  What are the ideas?  How did you see the connections?

I think that this video and the meaningful learning chapter 1 reading follow the same concepts. They both want for kids to be able to use technology for education. The video discusses the use of technology for problem solving and the reading talked about that also. There are many different learning styles so by using technology they allow multiple ways for a student to learn. The reading said that children should be able to have options as to how they want to learn and with technology they have options. Both the video and the reading referenced technology as a resource. In the video, a teacher mentioned how she allows for the students to make positive comments on the other students work or presentation. That really helps build confidence within them.

 

4. How do social networking sites or virtual communities broaden and/or otherwise change your students’ sense of community, and/or interaction with others? How do students communicate differently using technology than they might in person? What benefits do these digital tools offer, and what challenges might they present?

I think that social networking is great for educational purposes. It allows for students to connect outside of the traditional classroom. Social networking provides the opportunity to add supplemental things for learning. Students might be more fearless to talk to their classmates online. I think it would allow for true constructive criticism. That would make learning a lot easier since you would be combining school and play. A challenge might appear if students venture off to non-educational things on the social networks. That can be easily fixed if the material is interesting so that the students won’t want to venture.

 

5. Did you have similar experiences or did you know any teachers/ schools doing similar things?  Describe your experiences or the teachers/ schools you know.  If you don’t, try to think about one thing about one digital media project that you want to do with K-12 students or your friends.  (This will be the very first draft for your Design project!)

I was in a math and science magnet program in my high school. We always used technology! Either we were building our own technology or using preexisting technology to complete a project. I can tell that gave us an advantage over the other students. They weren’t performing at the rate that we were and at the end, it they made it, they usually went to a less performing college. If they had made the whole school technology based, then I think it would have been a higher success rate for the normal population. I would probably want to use the scavenger hunt project in my classroom because it gives the kids physical ways of learning.  Doing projects like this, will allow them to think outside the box and express creativity.

 

7) John Seely Brown says: “In a world of rapid change, the need to memorize something is a 20th century skill.” Do you agree or disagree with this statement? In what instances might memorization, or other more “rote” methods, still play a vital educational role? In what ways can approaches complement each other? (Cited from the discussion guide for the video clip)

I would have to say that I am on the fence with this statement. In some subjects, memorization is completely necessary. I feel that if it was what you want do for the rest of your life then memorization would probably place you at an advantage. Now when it comes to things that teachers just want you to know for the time being, then memorization isn’t necessary. Of course, with some thing you would just be better off memorizing it, such as multiplication or division. But with the amount of information we can reach just in our cell phones, the skill of memorization just isn’t needed. There are apps and search engines that basically put an entire library into your pocket. We can always reference subject material fast and the method of using your memory is just a tool of the past.

Reflection 2 (8/26/2013)

Meaningful Learning Reflection

           In this chapter of Meaningful Learning with Technology, the focus was the way learning has changed throughout the years. The chapter began with discussing the addition of standardized tests into school. I too fall victim to this because through all my years of being tested, I always memorized exactly what I needed and then would forget it after the test. As an educator, I want for my students to actually learn and feel like what I teach them will be beneficial to their life. The curriculum should be filled with topics that will put them a step ahead in being leaders for the future, not boring test preparation. From this chapter, I learned that I should find out what kind of learner each of my students are and use that information to adequately teach them.

           Nothing really shocked me in this chapter because I am an advocate for using technology in the classroom as much as possible. I was surprised to find out that things that seem so simple are technology such as a chalkboard. That just reminds me that new innovations and technology will always be here and there are no ways around it so it might as well be implemented into learning. The major takeaway I received from this chapter was that as an educator I should want my students to reach their highest potential and be exposed to much that the world has to offer. This means using technology to aid in education and connect in the best way to this generation.

 

Reflection 1 (8/19/2013)

Destini Jones

Professor Justine

EDIT 2000

Reflection 1

             This reflection is centered on the topic of my learning experiences since childhood. While being in school, I have experienced a lot of different techniques from my teachers to help me grasp whatever the lesson was. Growing up, I was a very smart child. I could read at grade levels way above my own and math and other subjects were beginning to come easily. The main struggle I had was with my communication skills because I had a speech impediment. I saw a speech therapist almost 3 times a week in grade school and I truly believe I can speak with much less hesitation because of that therapy.  

               The people that helped me learn the most were my family, teachers, and speech therapist. They used various techniques to get me to reach my highest learning ability. The most impressive methods used were making lessons out of games and incorporating videos and websites into the classrooms. My memory can recall playing bingo, jeopardy, and scavenger hunts as a fun way to keep us engaged in the lesson. I believe that was a great way to make the kids believe they are just having fun when they are actually learning many new things and skills.

             The ways of learning have changed so much over the past years. Technology has been implemented in so many aspects of life including learning. I know personally I have noticed how schools have made the shift by using more laptops in class. There are more classes that have projects that require the students to make websites, videos, or use or make apps for education. I always bring my laptop, iPad, and smartphone to class because everything I need to learn is on one or the other. For any topic that I need information on quickly, I can usually download an app that will deliver the information quick and efficiently. Technology is just an innovation that people have to adapt to because it is not going anywhere. I think it can have a very positive impact on education if used early to stimulate children’s minds.