Tech Task # 5

Hey everyone here is a photo that I added a quote to and edited for my 5th tech task.

The quote speaks to me as a pre service teacher, because it is true that students have to be involved in their own learning journey. In the end we just facilitate their learning, it is ultimately up to the students to partcipate in their own learning.

-Madison

Texting… teach on it.

This post is in response to Amy’s “No Texting In Class”.

I read Amy’s post about texting and watched the short video clip that was attached and this is my quick response.

As pre-service teachers who are currently students we know the importance of our cell phones. Communication and technology is the future. We now need these things in our lives, we have began to rely on them. Just as I am sure when the TV was invented some people may have been appalled and revolted, but now it’s a part of our existence and everyday lives.

As a teacher we should embrace these tools. If all of our students have cell phones in class, we need to adapt to that. We shouldn’t punish them for using technology, there are resources on the internet that allow us to use cell phones in our lessons in a productive way that will benefit our students learning.

Here is a site that can be used in the classroom to text answers, this could be used as a review tool  to see where are students learning is currently at before we begin the lesson.

http://www.polleverywhere.com/

Let me know what you think

-Madison

Budget Spreadsheet- Tech Task # 3

Here is the link to my google spreadsheet for tech task 3…. I am pretty happy that we learned how to do this stuff in class, it is especially helpful for teachers. I found it very helpful to learn how to enter marks and formulas to make enter grades easy and efficient.  If we don’t learn this stuff in other classes, I wonder how some pre service teachers plan to enter grades and marks? Shouldn’t this be a mandatory part of the teacher education program?

-Madison

Grades are the Currency of School.

Last night I was in a 4 hour night class on assessment and evaluation. During the long drawn out evening we discussed our many assignments and readings about assessment and evaluation. During a group discussion my table began to talk about the importance of having a grade on a report card. It is usually mandatory that all teachers provide percentage or letter grades for report cards. In this class we are taught that it is wrong to base one’s learning on a grade. It is not fair to the student; especially if the student takes more time to master or understand the particular concept being taught.

In more discussion with our teacher our group argued that grades are important and they are incentive for students to do well. In response our teacher said “ya but why do you feel this way? shouldn’t learning something be your incentive?” The whole table disagreed that we are not wanting to learn for the sake of learning, but in fact our motivation is based on a percentage grade. This doesn’t make any sense.  Grades make school a competition, they create a gap between the smart kids and the kids who may be struggling in school. Just like the rich and the poor. Grades are the currency of school.

-Madison

YouTube… YouEverything- Tech Task # 2

Just watched “An anthropological introduction to YouTube”. My initial reaction is woaaahh. YouTube is so much more than just a site of funny videos. People express themselves, connect, entertain and live through YouTube. YouTube is a global community. Its pretty cool when you think about how many people use YouTube on a daily basis and how inspiring and helpful it can be for people. It can do more than just make you a singing sensation. It can make you feel like you belong to someone, it can allow you to be heard. Most important to me it can offer so much to my future students. I can use YouTube to find resources for my lesson planning. Students can use you tube as a way to reflect on their learning and ask questions to other YouTubers about common learnings and understandings. It’s a tool that could be great for educational purposes.

On the other hand there are negative aspects to this YouTube craze. Cyberbullying, rude comments, inappropriate content. This negative stuff makes me weary as a teacher. I want to be able to protect my students from these bad things. By protecting my students I could also be ruining opportunities to embrace the many positives of YouTube.  So as a teacher I think that it’s important for me to give my students the information and skills they need on how to properly use this tool. It creates so many possibilities for my students and most likely many of them will be using YouTube anyway.

Although currently I use YouTube, I think I have much to learn about it. I have an account but have only uploaded videos for university purposes. Maybe its time for me to step outside of the box, expand my own learning, see whats out there, try and incorporate it into my teaching and find where this can fit into my personal teaching journey.

-Madison

Self Regulation Nation…

In one of my education classes we were able to go into an elementary school and view a classroom that was set up for student self regulation. The idea is that students can use fidgets and tools to help them learn better during the classroom. Some of these tools were: exercise bike, mini-trampoline, chewing gum, suckers, wobbly chairs, straws to chew on, yarn tied to desks. Along with the tools in the classroom the environment was very different from a regular elementary school classroom. No bright colours, no lamination, no flourescent lighting, and lots of fake plants. Apparently with the help of all of these elements the students are able to learn better than those would in a “distracting classroom”.

I believe that some of these tools may actually work for some students and the implementation of fidgets and gum may help to get them back on track. On the contrary I think that these tools could cause even more distraction and essentially could be used as entertainment for the students. Is this what we want to do? Do we want to entertain our students so they shut up and don’t bother us or the other students. I think as teachers we need to be able to “entertain” or engage our students through different teaching strategies and lessons.

So I get it, research shows that some students benefit tremendously with the use of these self regulation tools. What about the kids who already can self regulate and do not need extra distractions within the classroom.  What about the kids who aren’t negatively effected by flourescent lighting and lamination? Are we possibly looking into this issue too much? How can we reach a happy medium? and where do we draw the line in our classrooms in terms of self regulation?

-Madison

Stop SOPA?… um yes

Last week my ECMP prof mentioned this thing called SOPA. He explained it a little bit, but I decided to look more into what exactly SOPA is and why people want to stop it. I found this video on Youtube that help explains exactly that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wrr2cRkvmmo&feature=fvst

After watching the video I was able to better understand SOPA and why my teacher is against this bill. Essentially  SOPA is a bill that could change the way the world uses the internet. Quite frankly I like the internet the way it is. As a pre-service teacher I would like to be able to access as much resources for my students and teaching as I possibly can. SOPA could have a negative effect on my future students and classrooms. SOPA could hinder my future student’s learning through the world of technology.

STOP SOPA

-Madison

About Me- Tech Task # 1

My name is Madison. I am university student currently in my 3rd year of education. I am in the secondary program with a major area of study in Health and a minor in social studies. Along with being a full time student I also have a part time job as a nanny. I used to be very involved with dancing, and I was able to teach young children ballet, through this experience I realised the importance of teachers and what a rewarding profession it is.

During my schooling I was lucky to have been able to use technology as a part of my learning. Computers and the internet were the main things that I used to enhance my learning. I think very highly of integrating technology in the classroom. Why?…. its interactive, students enjoy it, it’s the future, many students know how to use technology so why not let them.

There are many benefits to using technology in the classroom, it is a way of accommodating student’s different learning styles; it can be an awesome source of information and great for research and new learning. Technology also has a downside. There is a negative stigma associated with technology sometimes. It can be dangerous when not used properly. For example cyber bullying is becoming more and more prevalent in society and will probably affect many of my future students. Having the proper technology etiquette and skills can help students avoid this issue.

I definitely plan to use many technological tools to help my students learn. ECMP 355 will give me the skills and knowledge on how to do this. I want to become more comfortable with technology and also learn how to keep my students safe when using these tools. I hope that after this course is finished I will have a wide variety of new tools to add to my teaching portfolio.  I want to be able to impress my co-op teacher during my internship in the fall. Most importantly I want to teach my students to the best of my ability and I think technology will be a major help.

-Madison