Sunday, February 16, 2014

Blog Post 5

I learned so much from watching the conversations with Anthony Capps. It was very neat to hear from a 3rd grade teacher who is actually using all the things that we are using in this class. Every single one of the videos taught me something a little different, but most of them seemed to center around using technology in the classroom. You can use it in almost every aspect of teaching, and it really enhances how kids learn because you're incorporating things that they are already using.

In the first two videos I watched, Project Based Learning Part 1 and Part 2, it was very interesting to hear some examples of how he is actually using project based learning in his classroom. He is being recognized not just in his school but also all across the state, so obviously what he's doing is working! The fact that he could point out what to do when your projects don't go as planned like in the Afghanistan project, helped me to see how teachers have to constantly be ready for things to go wrong. He lists that quality of a teacher in the video Tips for Teachers as well, so it's obvious that that is a big part of what he does.

The other big thing that I learned through these videos is that these kids are running circles around us as far as technology is concerned. In the video Don't Teach Tech-Use it, he is talking about them easily using programs that I sometimes struggle to understand and often get frustrated with. This makes me really want to work harder to get the hang of all of it, and take advantage of things that I'm given access to like he does with things like Discovery Ed and iCurio. Overall, the information in all the videos not only taught me a lot about what life in the classroom is really like in today's world but also encouraged me that it is possible to incorporate these tings effectively.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Blog Post 3

I've never been a very big fan of peer reviews. Actually, I really hate peer reviews. I never like telling someone that the thing that they put a lot of work into has mistakes, and I definitely don't enjoy hearing it. After watching What Is Peer Editing? and reading Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial, I do feel a little bit better about the whole process. I like the idea of putting a positive spin even on your criticism.
It can be difficult not to take personal offense to someone critiquing your work, but I think for the most part, they don't like saying it just as much as you don't like hearing it! After looking at those two resources, I had to take a step back and really think about the way I review and the way I take a review. The part that hit home the most with me was definitely in the video when she said not to take it personally. That's difficult for me, but it's something I fully intend to work on.

I think I've found myself in many of the position that were comically portrayed in Writing Peer Review Top 10 Mistakes. I've experienced people who have no helpful feedback at all but still manage to make me feel incompetent, and I've had people give me great feedback in a very mean way. After watching that, I really will try to be much more intentional in my peer editing. Number one, I will be striving to do it in such a way that is helpful but doesn't make the person feel dumb. I'll also attempt to find the good in everything that I read. Because even when it really is bad, there is always something redeeming.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Blog Post 2

This first video Mr. Dancealot was a very interesting way of showing that as a teacher, you can't always just stand in front of the class and lecture. To be the professor of a dance class and just show diagrams and pictures and theories but never actually have students actively learning how to do the dance is more than ridiculous, but it's impossible! The video very clearly showed that students weren't learning anything. They were falling asleep during lectures, getting lost in diagrams, and not understanding any of the steps being taught. I think that the conclusion made from this is completely spot on. You can't teach a class one way and then turn around and expect students to be able to decipher that into something else. You can teach the theories of dance all day long, but until you stand your students up, show them what to do, and let them try it for themselves, they will never actually learn it. this applies to all areas of teaching. We as future teachers have the responsibility of make learning possible by the route we choose to do this.

Teaching in the 21st Century definitely made me think! I had never really envisioned teaching in that way. Robert believes to teach in the 21st century means to teach students how to use and operate the resources they have to get the information they need to know. He starts off by saying that if a teacher's job is to simply give facts and information, they he or he has already become obsolete. Students today have a wealth of knowledge literally in the palm of their hand, so as teacher our job is no longer jut to spit out important things that they should memorize, it is to teach how to find quality information in the devices that they're already using. We need to teach them how to use things like Blogger, Wikipedia, Google Facebook, and Twitter; and we also need to teach them what plagiarism, copyright, pirating, and slander really mean. Teaching in the 21st century isn't like any other time, in his opinion, and it's our job as educators to adapt our style to fit that. I think what Robert proposes is very relevant in the world of education today, and for the most part, I agree with him. I do believe that students today can't be taught the same way that we were taught growing up, because times really have changed. at the same time though, I' not sure that we can just stop those methods all together. Should we quit teaching children about the Civil War just because they can now look it up online? Absolutely not! There are still somethings that are very important for students to know, and it's still our job to teach them.

Honestly The Networked Student made me a little bit sad about what being a teacher has become according to the video. When I think of being a teacher, this is not at all what I envision. I don't see myself just being there to show students what safely learning on the internet looks like. I want to be someone that students can leave my class and know things about life and learning that they didn't know when they walked in, and I just don't see that happening with this portrayal of a teacher. I love learning, and I love books and lectures and taking notes. This is why I chose to become a teacher, so to think that all of those things are becoming irrelevant makes me sad.

I believe that the thesis of Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts is that students today are capable of way more learning than most believe is possible, and the best way to harness this potential is through the incorporation of technology into the classroom. I get it. I really do, but I still am not sure how much I agree with it. I can definitely see the benefits of teaching students how to use technology, and I think that if we do that then we really will change the world of education. But at the same time, if we continue on this way of thinking, then at some point in the future teachers will be completely obsolete. If that's what we are working toward then that's fine, but if that is the case then why am I spending four years in school in lecture classes learning how to get up in front of a class and teach?

I had never heard of flipping the classroom until I watched the video, Flipping the Classroom . It's a very interesting concepts that, although I see a few holes in, I believe would be very beneficial to both students and teachers. Having kids see the lesson for the day before they ever step foot in the classroom is an excellent way to help make high levels of thinking and learning possible. Although I think there will be a lot f trial and error with this as it is implemented in schools, I think overall that the idea has a lot of potential.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Blog Post 1

I had heard a lot about this class before I even signed up for in the fall, so I was a little wary going in. Now not everything I heard was bad, just the majority of it. I'd heard from some students that this was one of the hardest college classes they've ever taken. Another said that they were more stressed out than at any other point so far in their college years. So needless to say, I was freaking out just a little! Although most people said that the class is hard, they also said that they really learned a lot, not just about the computer aspects but also about managing their time. With all of this in mind, I will admit that I was more than a little afraid of this class. I've always been good in school, so the thought of not being able to do well in a class makes me a tad nauseous. From what I can tell so far, this class won't be anything like any other class I've ever taken, college or high school. Up to this point, most all the classes I've taken have been basics that you barely have to show up for, much less actually put time and effort into. I'm not a big fan of the unknown, so this class definitely made me anxious.

I think that for me the most difficult part of this class will be managing my time and remembering all of the assignments that are due and when. I'm very organized but also a little scatter brained, so it's going to take some discipline. I think the best way for me to take care of this issue is to have a strict schedule of when to do things and writing out every week exactly what needs to be done. This class is going to be challenging, I can already tell, but I can also tell that it will be very good for me. It's going to push me to do more than just enough to get by. I don't really have any questions about this class right now, but I know that if I ever do, that there is an over abundance of resources to help answer those questions.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Practice Post

My name is Hannah Waters, and I've lived in Mobile for my entire life. I'm from a very big family: I have four sisters, one brother, and nine nieces and nephews. It's both awesome and crazy to be from such a big family, but I definitely wouldn't trade it for anything. I've learned so much from spending all my time in a big group of people, and I probably wouldn't be in this course of study if it wasn't for that.

My original plan for college wasn't actually to attend USA. I had planned on going to the University of Mobile, which is a private christian college about 20 minutes from here. UM is about a tenth the size of South, and I had been planning to go there for pretty much all of high school. It wasn't until about three months before I graduated that I decided that it would be a much better financial decision to attend USA, considering that tuition at Mobile is more than double what it is here. Although South wasn't my first choice, I'm very glad that I ended up here.

I've never had any doubt that I wanted to be an elementary school teacher. Ever since I was a kid, I knew that I wanted to be a teacher when I grew up. I would force my younger sisters to sit in our room while I wrote on our little white board and pretended to teach them something. In high school while everyone else was unsure about what they wanted to do with their life, I was completely confident in my decision to be an educator. Choosing Elementary Ed. over anything else was probably due to the fact that I have spent my entire life surrounded by children. I've always known what I wanted to be, but it's crazy to me that it is actually in the process of happening.

My Test Post Title

This is my first post. I clicked the HTML button like I should always do in EDM310. I am now a blogger.