Reflection

This would have to be the best PD I have done in years. Granted, I was on maternity leave for 5 years but I was very apprehensive about technology in the classroom on my return. Completing this has given me  a great boost in confidence and knowledge. I have tried some of the tools in the classroom already and the children approached them with great excitement.

The iLE@RN model is exactly where our school is heading with Change 2 and I think I will be referring back to it regularly to keep me on track in the classroom. I like the line, “It’s about good learning and teaching first”.

So my next step is to look further into some of the tools and share them.

Module 10

I like the idea of Wikis as I have just been through the “email jungle” with organising the school fair. This would have been a very handy tool. If I used it I would have to keep in mind that the general public can access it. Google Docs would be the solution to this problem.

Nings can be another way to find resources that have been tried and tested instead of muddling through lists. Being part of a community with similar interests can be extremely beneficial and I can see that it could work very well in the classroom but probably for older students.

The tutorials to create a Google Site seem very straight forward and I will perhaps attempt this when I have a reason to. Google sites and blogging seem to be quite similar.

Module 9

Scootle is an excellent resource for the classroom and beyond. It has a vast array of websites to use and the fact that it is all connected to the Australian curriculum makes so much sense. Another tool I will have to put more time into.  Pinterest is fantastic for this too. It is a very simple tool that has a category of teaching ideas that are constantly being added to. The fact that it is image based is a winner for me.  Clicking on the image brings up it’s web site.

Second Life looks very interesting and I like that it is “virtual learning”. Being involved in a  Shakespearean play or visiting Roman baths would be a novel way of instilling as “doing” is one of the best ways of learning. The limitations would be the topics it doesn’t  offer.

I use Facebook and find it a great way to keep up with all my friends and discover a few good sites, Earth Porn being one.  Primary aged children can’t use it and I think this is a good thing as you need to be accountable for what you contribute online.

I can’t really see the point of Linked In for primary aged children or teachers.

Twitter is something I will have to investigate more for the educational links it offers. I can”t really see how primary children can benefit from this tool.

 

Module 8

I can see the benefits of using a RSS Reader- everything comes to me so that I don’ t have to click from one site to another. I can see that I could spend a great deal of time reading all that is available to me. I have used Feedly to provide me with up to the minute news etc.

I need to give this a bit of consideration as to how beneficial it would be for students in the classroom. I think I need to look into the type of websites students regularly use first then decide.

Module 7

This is exactly what I have been needing and am so happy to be using it. It is a bit like the Pinterest of websites. Previously I was using a document to record all the links  but now I have Delicious. I like the tagging tool which categorises. Being able to look on other people’s lists is a great opportunity to add to your own resources. A good tool to use in the classroom for recording links for “projects” etc.

Module 6

I had problems searching for images using Picasa Web. I could find the images only through Google+  but the menu/options to change size etc wasn’t there. I obviously haven’t got the right page but need to ask someone in the know how to do this.

I was able to upload photos from my computer and made a collage and also played around with the different ways we can present the photos. Good fun and something that should be easy enough in the classroom.

Once again I could not find the Blog this! key so uploaded this in a roundabout way.

 

Module 5

I looked into some other mind mapping tools and came across Popplet. From the very short experience I had with it,  it appears to be easier to “work” than Bubbl.us  and pictures can be drawn. It seems more kid friendly.

Some of the activities on BtN this week suggest using Glogster, Prezi and Bio Cube!

One day later……..

Man, I have just experienced a huge learning curve. I have put together a glog about William Shakespeare as the students love to act out his plays. Ta dahh.

http://gabriellekinsman.edu.glogster.com/shakespeare

Once I got the hang of copying images and uploading them I enjoyed the whole experience. It is easy to see how exciting it could be for students. I like the suggestions that are included to keep you focused on what content to include. This is a perfect segue to teaching the students about copyright. The following link  http://www.teachingcopyright.org/curriculum/hs is a great resource for doing just that.

Prezi is like an up market PowerPoint which I like. I have put one together which was quite straightforward.

http://prezi.com/lydgvady_qrb/edit/#1_24309637

 

 

Module 4

 

 

I have used Podcasts to listen to comedians and discover things I didn’t learn in history. I have come across a  site that offers a plethora of podcasts, 50 Educational  Podcasts  You Should Check Out   http://www.opencolleges.edu.au/informed/features/50-educational-podcasts-you-should-check-out/  Not all are relevant but I will endeavor to go through the list and see if I can learn anything along the way. It  is a nifty way for students to record their discoveries/work and perhaps a more comfortable way for some as they may find talking in public very disconcerting.

I have used iTunes to download music, music videos and podcasts but was not aware that I could download videos and television shows. It is a great library for music and can be used to enhance stories the children have created.

I used Animoto and have created a slide show and am very pleased with the outcome. once I learnt how to save the images properly I put it together in no time and even uploaded a song to compliment the images.

http://animoto.com/play/LpvNKABC2WYpKxl4zA67Yw

This is a great way for students to showcase their learning through slideshows or videos and add their own choice of music. I have used a similar tool with my class to create their own myths when we studied a unit on Stories, Myths and Legends.

After visiting the various video sites I maintain that You Tube is by far the best as it has anything and everything on it. I have used it a great deal when teaching science topics. I have even used The Magic School Bus; an old but timeless series of cartoons that have the children enthralled from start to finish and explain things so well.

 

Module 3

I stumbled around gmail, Google+ and Google Drive  not knowing what was what. It gradually dawned on me that Google+ is like Facebook. Everything else came together after going over the clips again. Along the way I  discovered many links that will be valuable for my own learning and what can be done in the classroom. It  is not only documents, spreadsheets, forms and presentations that can be stored in the cloud but also music, photos and videos. I will have to learn how to use spreadsheets now . Something else to put on my ‘to do list’.

I have shared a document with a colleague and made a form which I shared with staff.  I did this with staff as I don’t have my own class. The first thing I thought when I saw all the graphs that were created when using forms was that it  would be a great  for chance and data. When the children collaborate for ‘projects’ it will be obvious to the teacher how much work each child has put in.

 

So has the USB  become obsolete? Drive is such a neat and simple way (once you ‘get it’) to go about storing and accessing data.

 

Does this mean that every student will have their own gmail account? I think it does.

Module 2

 

Before starting any blogging in the classroom we would have to go through safety and etiquette when using the internet.

I am gradually realising the the many benefits of blogging in the classroom. When it was originally put to me I wondered what the point was as many of the blogs I had read were about people’s everyday life- how could that  be relevant? After watching  clips and reading teachers websites for using blogs, I have found many reasons including:

  • tracking writing progress
  • writing for an audience which makes it meaningful
  • connecting with people  globally which opens up their learning
  • expressing their learning and thoughts
I have just signed up on Twitter  and have already seen the personal benefits. Once I started following education related tweets rather than the celebrities first suggested, I could spend hours following the links. There is soooo much out there. The clip suggested made it clearer to me how using Twitter in the classroom can be beneficial. I will have to spend more time on Twitter and less on Candy Crush!