Thursday, July 27, 2006

WebTeacher - you're my hero!

I am so excited to learn about WebTeacher! I wish I would have known about this before!! I will admit, the first time I jumped on to WebTeacher I found that I lost track of time because there was so many great things to see and learn. I think it’s wonderful to find something on the net that can assist me in making every minute count when performing research.

As for reading the tutorials, I love having this ability. I find that I am able to grasp concepts quicker when I can see how it is done instead of just reading a book. Anyway, I am quite thankful to learn about this because I know that I will be using it more than I care to admit.

Monday, July 24, 2006

The book is done!

I just finished reading the informative book, “Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and Other Powerful Web Tools for Classrooms”. Now, I consider myself a positive person that is passionate about the teaching field; however, at this particular moment I’m scared! This book has excited me and scared me about the many technology tools that I can use in my future classroom.
The textbook proves that teachers that use technology in a classroom for teaching and grading can be quite efficient teachers. In fact, I would say Richardson would argue that using technology in the classroom is much more efficient than doing things the old, non-technology way. I would agree with Richardson that technology can make your life easier but at the same time it scares me because it seems like whenever you figure out a way to save time, you jam more things into your life. I don’t know about you, but that stresses me out! I feel like society is set at full speed and the speed keeps getting faster. I like to be efficient; however I DO NOT like to be overwhelmed and at this moment the idea of more and more technology is a bit overwhelming.
On the positive side, I do realize that the more you work on a computer, the easier it gets (thank gosh!). Before you know it, I will be like the rest of the technology savvy people and I too will be working efficiently so I can jam more activities into my busy schedule. I guess this is the life of a teacher and this is the direction I am headed in. I know I have to jump on the technology ride because if I don’t I will miss out. So, I guess I will just have to get over it, buckle up, and enjoy the ride!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

"The future of literacy" and "Visually Speaking"

I believe it means a variety of things to be considered literate in the context of computers. I had always thought of myself as literate with technology; however, I am learning that I really didn't know much! I can relate to Danielle in, "The Future of Literacy" as she uses the computer and is comfortable with it but tends to use it for more fun than anything else. Although, I am now realizing that I need to shift my thinking about computers as "fun" and start depending on them like many others have been. I will admit, I have been scared to let go of my old ways but I know that it is imperative to change because the world around me isn't going to sit still. If I don't change my thinking and use of technology I won't be able to help my students advance is this technology based world.

I have to mention that I love this quote in Shlain's article which states, "The recurrent message aneurocognitiveve conferences these days is, Neurons that fire together wire together; neurons that fail to synch fail to link." Could this be stated any better? I think this article was well written. I was so impressed with it, I sent it to many of my friends marked as an, "interesting read." I can't wait to see what they think about it.

Overall, I feel that my teaching will be greatly enriched by incorporating technology into my classroom curriculum. Technology excites students and keeps children actively engaged in learning. I want to be a teacher that is constantly learning and trying new things so I can teach my students the latest and greatest. I want to know and be able to relate to my students. I don't want to be the old outdated teacher that the kids hate- so here I am. I am ready to tackle the world of technology!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Chapter 4-6

I love how chapter 6 states, “all roads now point to a Web where little is done in isolation and all things are collaborative and social in nature” (89 Richardson). I think this statement contradicts what many people think about computers. Of course as we have discussed in this class we should all realize that technology opens up the doors for people to speak with anyone at anytime.

As for how I will utilize the social web in my classroom- I think it’s a great idea to introduce my students to concepts such as RSS. To think of the many contacts the students could make is quite amazing! Of course this should be done with older students as I don’t want my students to come across things that I would hope they wouldn’t see on the internet! I love the del.icio.us as this helps share links in a very easy process! I can’t wait to add to my del.icio.us list and to introduce this to others!!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Who is Seymour Papert?

Dr. Seymour Papert pioneered the theory of constructionism, which holds that children learn best when they're actively engaged in building--or constructing--something that is meaningful to themselves or others around them. In addition, the theory contends that kids are motivated by sharing their creations with others.

  • He was born and educated in South Africa
  • He is a mathematician and one of the early pioneers of Artificial Intelligence.
  • He worked with Jean Piaget at the University of Geneva from 1958-1963. It was this collaboration that led him to consider using mathematics in the service of understanding how children can learn and think.
  • He began working at MIT in the early 60's where he founded the Artificial Intelligence Lab and co-authored his seminal research with Marvin Minsky.
  • He believes that computers can change learning.

He is the author of:

Mindstorms:Children Computers and Powerful Ideas (1980)

The Children's Machine: Rethinking School in the Age of the Computer (1992)

The Connected Family: briding the digital geration gap (1996)

* He also has written numerous articles about mathematics, Artificial Intelligence, education, learning, and thinking.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

¿Usted habla español? (Do you speak Spanish?)


Este juego le ayudará con su español, le da un intento!
(This game will help you work on your Spanish, give it a try!)

It's Grammar Time !

Try this Grammar game. I think that some might find this helpful when reviewing for their subject matter tests for Language Arts.

Math Fun

I challenge you to play this entertaining math game!

Language Arts Fun

This is a fun site for kids to play the good ole' Mad Libs! Try this out!!

Papert vs. Monke

I am excited to be presenting with Heather about this interesting topic! I don't want to give away our presentation regarding these articles, but I will say a few words. As I read the two articles I found many points that I agreed with. For example, I agree with Monke that people get sucked into computers as it was mentioned students would give up recess to have the opportunity to stay in to work on the computer. I am sure that we can all relate to this in some way. I recall doing this myself as I sat at the computer to look up something on one site, bounced over to another site, and another site and well you know how it goes. (Don't act like this has not happened to you, I know we have all been there at one point!)

I also agree with Papert that kids like the fast paced high tech world of computers. It's amazing the things that you can learn on computers not to mention how fun it can be. TechnoIogy is everywhere! I recall taking a science class that offered virtual cadaver for students that could not deal with the real thing. I didn't take advantage of the program because I wanted the real experience; however, I think it was wonderful that the program was available for people that could not participate dissectionion due to medical reasons. In my opinion, I don't think that virtual experiences compare to real life experiences, but at times they can be quite handy!

Monday, July 10, 2006

How I will use Blogging with my 1st graders

I hope to have a successful career as a 1st grade teacher. This Blog entry will inform my fellow Blog reading classmates on my plan of utilizing Blogging into my future 1st grade classroom.

I believe that young children in the 1st grade can learn quite a bit by designing a Blog. I will use this lesson as a means to introduce computing to my students. I realize that now-a-days many students are on the computer before they enter kindergarten; however, in my particular student teaching placement I know that many of the students that I have worked with have limited computer access if any at all. By developing a Blog my students will learn: how to operate a computer, internet safety, and they will be exposed to the endless opportunities available on the world wide web. To perform this advanced project I will utilize the assistance of older students to help my 1st graders since the 1st graders have limited reading, writing, and typing abilities. I think the project would be great for the paired students as the older student can supervise and show off their skills while the younger student can learn from and be guided by their mentor student. Over the course of the school year the Blog will be updated monthly with the ultimate goal of having the younger child doing most of the blogging by the end of the school year.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Presentation Dates


These are the dates that I would prefer: 7/13, 7/18 or 7/20.