Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Tool # 11

1. 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.

I love Animoto, have for a long time, just wish we didn't have to pay for longer videos. It would be nice if the district could negotiate a buy from Animoto for all the schools to be able to do longer Animotos. I also really like StoryBird. I think the art work is inspiring and cutting edge. It would be so easy for students of all ages to be inspired by the artwork and create a story from the images. Also love the vokis. We had the students write poetry, create a voki and have the voki recite their poems. The students really enjoyed it.

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?

My classroom is the library. I would like to have more i-macs and more i-pads and flip cameras. I think that would get teachers to come to the library to create videos and work with the different apps on the ipads.

3. Were there any unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you?
I wasn't really surprised by much. There is so much out there and it is growing exponentially. I do worry that we need to have a balance between technology and going outside and looking at the sky and smelling the roses. Let's never forget to stop and smell the roses.

Tool # 10

The 3 things I would want my students to know about digital citizenship are:
1. What you put out on the internet will always be there
2. Words can cut deep, so be kind and thoughtful about what you put out on the internet.
3. Do NOT give out any personal, financial or private information on the internet unless you are completely sure of who is receiving this information.

I would teach students AND parents about digital citizenship through discussion, examples and several of the videos available on you tube.  Nearly every week in the news there are examples of ways NOT to use the internet, fraud, harassment, theft, cruelty, identity theft and more.

Tool # 9

I explored Thinkfinity and used the Comic Creator. It was VERY limited in the choices for students. This might be something fun for an ESL class to do. They can  design and write a short comic. It is nice that you can choose from a single panel to a six panel cartoon. This website is quite vast and would take several days for me to fully explore the possibilities here. Thinkfinity is organized by content areas which is nice. I also explored the games and tools section of Thinkfinity and found an Essay Map. I played with this and thought it was a pretty good thing for the students to use when they are struggling with writing.

Tool # 8

Having taught art for 13 years here at NHS I was intrigued by the drawing tablet. I remember when they first came out, sometimes they worked and sometimes they didn't. Now they are amazing, they are in tune with Photoshop and it sounds like the possibilities are endless. I know I will be down in the art rooms testing out the drawing tablets. The students should love these. They are expensive so management will be especially important. Just keeping track of the stylus will be a challenge. I presume some sort of check out, check in procedure will be necessary to keep up with the stylus.  Good luck art teachers.
I love, love, love the ipad. It is light, portable and has so much potential it is astounding. More and more educational apps are being written every day...I see huge potential for Math, Art, English, Social Studies.
There are dictionaries, it is also an e-reader, many of the classics are free downloads.
Eventually, students will have tablets and no books, we are on the precipice of huge changes in education.

Tool # 7

For tool #7, the collaborative classroom, I would like to blog about the skype collaborations that we have done here at NHS. Of course we have started small, but I think it would be easy to go global at this point because we have had such success with local collaborations. The Orchestra teacher and her class skyped with an elementary class of students that were interested in knowing about orchestra. They had many questions to ask the high school orchestra students. I think both sets of students enjoyed the skype experience so much that we did it again and the orchestra students played for the younger kids. I was also setting up a global collaborative pen pal experience with the ESL students, but as it turned out, we did not have the proper equipment. So we designed something ourselves. Marita, Mallory and I designed a collaborative lesson using Skype. We contacted Adrian Pere and she put us in touch with an elementary class room. On our end, the ESL students were going to work in groups. They would choose a book and each person in the group would take a couple chapters and read it via Skype to the elementary students. Here in the library I have several low level chapter books, we thought these would work out great for both the ESL students and the elementary students. I even enlarged the illustrations in the book, colored them and created a ppt that could run behind the students reading so that there would be visulas as well as a story. The trouble we planned this for the spring, which is way too busy, so we ran out of time. BUT, I think we might try it this coming fall when things aren't quite so hectic. The thing is...we plan for these big projects, which take A LOT of time to plan and implement with the students, and we are told that we can't do them because there are too many other things we have to do. It's like we are between a rock and a hard place.
Skype is a simple, easy way to collaborate and the possibilities are endless.

I would also like to blog a bit about the collaboration that is going on this very moment in the library. School is out and several of us are sitting in the library working on our blogs and other things. It has been fun to tell each other what new gadget we have added to our blog. Quinton just showed me how to convert a powerpoint and add it to the blog. I added the Color Notes ppt that I will be using to teach a Color Theory Art class this summer at Rice University. Thanks Quinton.

Tool # 6

I got on to Diigo and made a group with my tech buddies. I like Diigo, it was easy to add people to my group and it was good to have privacy settings. We had a good conversation and NA posted a url to the Diigo, it was a program on Facebook that I have been wanting to see. It took me awhile to get the link to my Diigo account correct, but with the help of my buddies we made it work.
Google Docs counts as one of the tools for tool #6. At school I had the Latin 3 class go into their google accounts and activate their accounts. They were working in groups ,they added the emails of their group members so they could collaborate. The students collaborated with their document and added  images from the internet.

Tool # 5

I did a short animation in "Go Animate". I had to register and now it has put my real name up over my animation. I don't like that. It took me a moment to figure out how to get started in this animation. I think it would be fun for the students BUT it is very limited unless, of course, you pay for upgrades. I was able to take my real name off and use my blogger name. I also did a butterfly Animoto. I really enjoy animoto, it allows for a little more creativity than Go Animate.
Students have to gather images, write text and choose music. However, if you want an Animoto longer than 12 to 15 photos you have to upgrade with $$.

Tool # 4

I created a google doc and google form. I have not had any collaboration on the google doc yet, but I am sure my colleagues will be sending me collaboration soon. I created a google form, but it took me a moment to find where it was. I liked being able to create the form and think it would be interesting to give the students short quizzes. You could even have the kids create their own quiz in google forms and give them to each other. There are lots of possibilities. In google docs, students can collaborate on documents in different classes. I collaborated this past year with several teachers that used google docs with their students. The students were able to download photos and text and worked with students in different periods. 

Tool # 3 Embedding Videos

I went to 3 different video sources and embedded the videos, "The One Minute Painting", "Color Schemes", and "Elements of Art". I enjoyed searching for the videos I wanted. Each source requires a different approach to embed. You Tube was the easiest to use and has the most videos. I enjoyed this and was happy I did it, but really had a hard time with a couple of the videos. I would embed them and then they would not show up on the blog. Then I went away, came back and there they were. Go figure. Now all videos seem to be behaving just fine. Earlier in the year I tried to embed a video into my flip chart, but had no success, not sure what I was doing wrong. I am familiar with copyright for the classroom, so I was not that surprised by anything I read. I set up an account of dropbox. I think this is a great idea, especially for people that have a lot of different devices to keep track of.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Tool #2

I have gone on several of my NHS colleagues blogs. It is very interesting to read about their experiences and thoughts about blogging.  I can see the blog being very useful for collaboration with other teachers', and for students to collaborate with each other.  I will admit that in my precious spare time I would not choose to sit in front of a computer screen blogging. I would rather be riding my bike or working in my garden. The chores to be done in the garden are never ending and although it is too hot to do much bike riding now, the Spring and Fall are beautiful bike riding days in Houston.  I am still looking for a blog that I would like to follow on a regular basis. It will probably be a gardening blog.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tool #1

The hardest part of almost any endeavor is getting started. I thought I would have it made with Blogger since I have already done 23 things, and 11 things and who knows how many other things. I don't know why I was surprised to see that Blogger has totally re-designed themselves. So, of course, I am starting from scratch. Good Luck to us all!

I had great fun making my VOKI, especially since Quinton did the voice. Creating the blog was confusing cause the district has me under 2 different emails, so I had to create a 2nd blog...things never seem to go the way you would like them to, but I have my blog and VOKI, and am ready to carry on.