Friday, August 3, 2012

Tool 10 - Digital Citizenship

For your Tool #10 assignment:
In YOUR blog post:
1. Discuss at least three things you would want to make sure your students understand about being good digital citizens.
Not stealing content, not sharing personal information, and learning email Netiquette.
2. Share at least one of the resources mentioned above or on the Ed Tech website that you plan to use instructionally. I would like to use some of the Atomic learning devices to help them learn about being good digital citizens.
3. Explain briefly how you would "teach" the idea of digital citizenship to your students. Students need examples. They need to recall when "bad" things have happened to them online.
4. Explain briefly how you plan to share the idea of digital citizenship with your parents. I love to communicate with parents. As we do projects that use technology that may be new to students or parents, it will be easy to send out an email to parents explaining what we are doing and why. It is also a good chance to review Netiquette with parents and encourage them to review it with their children.

Tool 11 - self assessment

. What are your favorite tools you now have in your personal technology toolbox? Briefly describe a particular activity that you will plan for your students using at least one of these new tools.
Favorites are always a hard question. I love the idea of Google Docs so that students can collaborate on classroom assignments. I also am very fond of Dropbox and use it all time already. I plan to use Google Docs to have students in all 3 of my 8th grade classes work together to do a project about a Spanish Speaking Country. 

2. How have you transformed your thinking about the learning that will take place in your classroom? How has your vision for your classroom changed? Are you going to need to make any changes to your classroom to accommodate the 21st Century learner? I have had my vision change. I would like to see my students doing more project bases assignments that will require them to use more technology. I am seeing more clearly that my students don't want to be lectured to, they want to "do, do, do". 

3. Were there any unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you? I am always surprised by the amount of tools that are available. I was pleasantly surprised to see how many I was familiar with, even though I haven't used them frequently. 

Tool 9 - Tools for learning

Tool #9 Assignment, create a new post in which you respond to the following:
  1. Why do you think it is important to tie the technology to the objective? Studnets are very used to playing games in a digital environment. They don't need more gaming practice.The iPads will be a new novelty for many students and they will want to find the "fun" and entertaining things to do but in a classroom it is important that powerful instrucitonal time is not widdled away as kids "play" on the classroom devices.
  2. Why should we hold students accountable for the stations/centers? Students must be held accountable for how they use the devices in the classroom. They are very much a priveledge, not a right and as a teacher I must be very attentive to what they are doing with these devices.
  3. Visit 2 of the applicable links to interactive websites for your content/grade level. Which sites did you like. How could you use them as stations? How can you hold the students accountable for their time in these stations? One site that will be nice with the iPads is They have so many lessons and activities for students learning Spanish. The same is true of Many of the listed applications were not for foreign language but there are so many resources out there to dig into.
  4. List two to three apps you found for the iPod Touch/iPad that you can use in your classroom. What do you see that station looking like? How can you hold the students accountable for their time in these stations? I am still researching apps. I haven't found a lot of free apps for the iPad that relate to spanish learning. But, I can hold them accountable by frequently wandering the room and being engaged as students use the devices.
  5. What about other ways to use the iPod Touch/iPad? Share another way you can see your students using the device as a station. Using the devices with a program like Splashpad would allow them to turn their iPad into the driving device running the Activ Board. It is a way students can be empowered. They can use the devices during presentations. I have a cord that connects the iPad to the digital projector as well and it will be great to connect them togehter.

Tool 8 - Using my devices

1. I will have the iPads in my classroom. I have been using and iPad for many months and I feel that I am pretty aware of the tool. I didn't see it in the video but I saw a little hub port the other day that allows several devices to plug into one sound source. I thought that would be so great to use for students doing something simultaneously in class.

I have also been amazed the how facetime can work. What a great tool that we can use to collaborate with other classes.

2. I feel it will be so important to check the equiptment frequently to be sure students haven't added and deleted programs. Since I have a personal iTunes account I'd like to set up a second iTunes account for my school iPads only. I can use my work computer to be the syncing location for these iPads and use "the cloud" to keep them synced as well.

Tool 7 - Digital Projects

The idea of working with other classrooms on a project has always been appealing but I have always pictured it as being very difficult. Looking at some of the tools mentioned throughout this course it seems that it would be easier to start such a project but I know it would require a lot of prep work with another teacher.

I thinking using Google Docs and VoiceThread students could easily work together to create digital projects. At the beginning of the year I would like to do a "why study Spanish?" project and have the students learn about where Spanish is spoken and what they can get out of learning another language.

I could collaborate within my school with our other 8th grade Spanish teacher to do this or I could find a middle school teacher on another campus that is willing to do the project.

I think this would be a great way to get the collaboration off the ground.

Tool 6 - collaborative learning

One tool I would like to use more is Poll Everywhere. I would like to figure out how to allow more than 40 responses. I have more students than that! But, I love to travel with students and so I created a poll to gather opinions about where we should go. Here it is...

The second collaborative tool I would like to use more of is Today's Meet. It seems like a fun way to get the kids engaged during a lecture. It can also be a "safe" way to ask questions and and a way to ask the students to participate but providing a low key environment.

Finally, this year I'd like to use blogger blogs for my students. I can require them to post specific posts and I can check their progress. They can also use it as an online portfolio for their projects. I am excited to integrate this tool.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Tool 5 - Web 2.0 - Part 2: Animoto

I have wanted to learn about Animoto but haven't taken the time! I was so surprised at how easy it was to use. Even students that are just beginning to learn to be technical could navigate through the process of creating the Animoto Video.

I did have the glitch of not being able to access my own personal photos for this assignment. Something wasn't connecting between Animoto and Facebook or Picassa. But, I used stock photos so that I could play with this tool. It is a free tool if the video is very short. If I were going to be using it a lot I'd want to purchase a better package.

Last Spring I took students to Costa Rica. I wanted to create a mini slideshow of some of the things we saw there.

Make a video of your own at Animoto.

This web2.0 tool would be easy to incorporate into any speaking assignment I would give my class. They could narrate on any topic as their slide show gave them visual clues to lead them through their assignment. I would love to use this in class this year.

Tool 5 - Web 2.0 tools Part 1 - Glogster

Glogster is a very cool Web2.0 tool that the students enjoy. I am part of the district initiative and used it a few times with my students during the 2011-2012 school year. I would like to expand using it this year. I think that it teachs the students some good computing skills. I will have them create a family tree. I created instructions in glog form and an example. It requires them to pull their own pictures from internet sources. They love to do that! My examples are listed here.

Tool 4 - Google Apps (The Cloud)

Google Docs:
At DAEP we use Google Docs for many forms and spreadsheets that many people need to access and be able to edit. One document I created is something that DAEP teachers can fill out when when need to send work back to a student's home campus. It simplied my life. One other teacher edited it to meet her needs and made it a 1/2 sheet document.

Google Forms:
We are preparing to offer more clubs and a class peirod during the day for specialized interest classes. This is an advisory period that we will be able to offer some fun activities for the kids. I created a form today that asked the teachers what type of class they would like to teach during this advisory period and emailed it to several staff members.

Google Apps:
This is a very useful too to educators. I already use it a lot with my colleagues but would like to use it more with students. I do see students saving documents to their google docs accounts and then accessing their own account in class. It is a great way for them to save projects and documents and then enable sharing to the teacher that needs to see it. We also do this for our DAEP teachers that need to share work with their home campus teachers. It works well.
I would like to see students do more collaborative projects using Google Apps. They can create and edit without having to get together to do it. They can start in the classroom and continue the work as homework and not have to be together to to the work. I am excited to try it more and expand what we have already been doing with it.
1. Create at least one document in Google Docs and share it with a few others on your campus or within your department. It could a team member, a department colleague, or another teacher with whom you plan a collaboration. Ask that person to comment or chat and real-time edit the document with you.
2. Create one form in Google Docs and send it via email to at least two other people and ask them to respond.
3. Briefly discuss how you can use the tools in Google Apps with your team or department. How can you incorporate Google Apps as a tool in your classroom? Which tools are you excited about using with students?

Tool 3 - Embedding Video

I have mostly used YouTube for video content but in the past I have also tried United Streaming. It has a lot of great content. There are so many resources for teachers and I am always amazed by the leniency that teachers have when it comes to copyright rules. I know I have to give credit to sources but that is generally made very easy by the tools that have been developed for internet use and sharing. So many resources automatically put watermarks on their content which is a safety for them to not have their work stolen.

I chose to embed a fun video that I like to show my students. It just makes us all laugh and lets the kids know that they have learned something - maybe more than this guy. It is the "One Semester of Spanish Spanish Love Song". Runaway Box produced the video and the actor "Spanish Mike" has several videos on YouTube now and has been on Telemundo for interviews. Funny Stuff! Enjoy!

I have been using Dropbox for several years and love it! I have an account for personal use and one that I set up for our church to share documents for the children's ministry volunteers. It is a great resource. Unlike Google Docs, the format of the documents doesn't change to a different platform and that is really nice.

See you soon,
Mrs. E

Monday, June 4, 2012

Tool 2 - Professional Learning Communities

Our first tool was to create this blog. :) Check!

Our second tool was to look into Professional Learning Communities. This idea was very familiar to me. I had to visit blogs (which I love to do), post a comment or two (which I love to do) and start a Diigo accout or a Google Reader account. I already have a Google reader for all of the craft blogs I follow but I set up another one for professional blogs. If you don't have a Google reader it is so easy to start and it makes following your favorite writers or blogs so easy!

I love to participate in online communities. I have followed crafting blogs for years and feel like I truly know some of these bloggers. I can lovingly refer to them as my "imaginary friends" since I don't REALLY know them. Building this same type of community with others in my teaching field is exciting. I have been searching for ways to change what is going on in my classroom and by reaching out and finding others that are doing innovative things I feel that I will be able to make good changes.

I am not afraid to share publicly. I know I need to be smart about what I saw and post but I don't feel like I need to be paranoid. The instructions for this tool shared a link about how to comment on posts but I felt like it was more of a link about how to "get" comments on my posts. I just feel like comments need to be positive or constructive and that they need to be relevant.

I listed a few of the blogs I plan to follow in my Good Reads list on the side of this blog. Take a peek!

See you soon,

Sra. E

Friday, April 27, 2012

11 Tools - Time to get started!

As part of a district initiative, all of the teachers must do a course that allows us to study the idea of Web 2.0.

Our students were born into a digital culture. They have never now know televisions without remotes, they have always had the internet and their parents have always had cell phones. Dial up internet is a phantom to them. Video games are a way of life, not a luxury. They are digital natives.

Why does it matter?

Well they are often being asked to learn in very traditional ways that don't utilize any of devices that they are experts on. We should be teaching them to use their resources to enhance their education and training them to use technology so that they can be players in the game when it is time for them to break into the world around them.

The first several posts of this blog will be to chronicle my experiences as I work through the 11 tools assignment. After that I plan to use this blog for my students and for my students as a means of communication and instruction.

Watch out for future posts!

Señora Ellingson