Saturday, November 24, 2012

Tool 11

I loved the ten marks web page. This is something I could easily implement. I love that it matches with the curriculum. To use this in my classroom, I would make the problems as an extra practice website. I am not sure yet how I could use it mainstream because of the variety of problems and I would want students to have a copy with them when they come to class. Each student can have a password assigned to them which would be easy to distribute by printing them off. I could also rent a COW for the day and have students work on their ten assigned problems. This way, I help students with problems while having the assessment scores reported.

The 11 Tools blog has helped me realize that I can be taking advantage of even more technology in the classroom. I do feel that some of the items mentioned have already been put to use but there are many tools that I now have a better understanding of and am less intimidated to use. I want to spend time becoming familiar with edmodo so that I can use it for next year. I feel comfortable that the next group of students will like this technology because they use it in other classes. It will also help the classroom environment by creating a network for students to ask questions and help others with homework.

I like how I was introduced to new ideas and now am able to have a database to return to when I want to reference these tools. I want to make sure that I don't become overwhelmed by the technology but rather integrate it gradually so that it authentically becomes a part of my classroom. When I feel confident about the technology, my students will be as well and can look at me as a role model for using technology in their own worlds.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Tool 10

Point 1: Don't be a bully! Cyber bullying is wrong just as much as bullying in person is.
Point 2: Have a balanced life of online and real life interaction. It is not healthy to spend all of your time online but rather online interactions are a tool to building real life interactions.
Point 3: Take advantage of the technology around us. We are fortunate to have access to such technology and it would be a shame to waste it.

I would share the Digital Dossier video and page with my students. There is a great list that summarizes different areas of digital citizenship that I take for granted but have to remember that these concepts were taught to me. In turn, I need to relay this information to my students. I also liked the video approach because it was from a child's voice so it does not sound like a lecture and the information is thought provoking.

To teach the concept of digital citizenship, I could show the video to my activity class and we could have a discussion about it. We could then have discussions focused on cyber bullying which tie into classroom and real life interactions that we are already working on the classroom. This relates to a no place for hate activity we recently did.

For parents, I could email them of what is to be expected for the activity and resources they could use to talk about digital citizenship with their students. I could also include the parents in the lesson by having students interview their parents on the questions we will be discussing in class.

Tool 9

1. By tying technology to the objective, students are able to see the objective in their real world more easily. When you have created an interest point for the students, they are more likely to pay attention and therefore soak in the material being presented. When students are in the real world, they will have a better understanding of how to interact with the world because we have been practicing through technology which is 'the way of the 21st century.'

2. As I mentioned earlier, I make the students responsible for plugging in the iPads. I like the idea of having a  manager of the tools rather than myself so that students are taking even more personal responsibility in the matter. I can also do this for the calculators. On a practical level, I cannot micromanage these elements of the classroom. By having students be responsible, I free some of my time to address math questions, etc. I can also help student teach themselves how to take responsibility for something small, such as the iPads and this will build healthy habits of being responsible in other aspects of their own lives.

3. I really enjoyed the NCTM link,, which is great because it focuses on math concepts and I know it is from an accredited source. I could have students solve a ken-ken puzzle one a week for a warm-up or homework activity or something to complete after tests and quizzes. To make sure the students are completing the assignments, I would give them each a completion sheet that they would have to carry around that would say which activities I wanted them to do. When students show me evidence that they have completed the assignments, I can use a stamp or signature as an easy way for myself to make sure students are completing tasks without having to turn in several pieces of paper.
With TenMarks, I can monitor student completion which is recorded instantly. I like this program because it is easy to sign up for and the students have responsibility for accessing material. There are also more opportunities to improve but you can create assignments this way as well.

4. On the spot has lessons from the textbook from Professor Edward Burger which makes these accessible to students. Students can also view these lessons through the online textbook. The Khan Academy also has an app which lets students have quick access to Khan Academy videos. Students can be assigned certain videos to watch. As a group, students will then be given a word problem similar to the one in the video. Each student will write down the steps to solving the problem and can create a presentation using the iPad.

5. The students could use the camera or video tools to capture math in real life related to the topic of the day. For example, students could act out a situation that involves percents. This would be a fun way to share learning with others. Students will be encouraged to participate because of the new medium to present information.

Tool 8

I have all of the iPads on the cloud which is nice for me so that I am able to select new apps and all of the devices get updated. This is also helpful so I don't have to look at each devices pictures (they are all steamed together.)
One of the fun things we have been doing with the iPads is taking class photos and important days of the year. For example, we had pictures with students who participated in red ribbon week. Something such as this allows me to continue to build the classroom environment which is inviting for the students and they see the community effect.

Academically, I have placed logic puzzle apps on the iPads. When students have earned free time, they are allowed to access the iPads. This way, students are still using problem solving. This allows students 'game time' but still is encouraging them to use logic. It was interesting how the students do not take to the netbooks the way that they do the iPads. The iPads are much faster to access because there is no sign in process. Even when all of the iPads have run out and there are still netbooks avaliable, the students will usually find something else to do rather than get on a netbook.

I am using one of the netbooks and the connector to the activboard instead of my main laptop so that I can allow students to change the slides when checking homework, etc. This helps the students communicate and self manage as a group so I can attend to more individual student questions. I can feel comfortable that students are not viewing my emails or that an email notification does not pop up during class which can be distracting.

To make sure students are taking care of the tools and technology, I stress the point that not every classroom in Houston has these items accessible to them. There was one day when one of my classes did not properly plug in the iPads and I did not allow them to use the iPads for the remainder of the week. I let the students know, and reminded them, that if they could not treat the materials with care, that they would not be able to use them which helped fix the problem of materials not being put away properly.

Tool 7

Previously in the semester, I had students writing summaries of each section of the chapter we were about to test over and then had the next class tag along and enhance what the previous groups had written. This would be a great project to do electronically so that all students could have more time to collaborate. For example, using Google Docs would provide a way to have each student show where they contributed in the project. It would also save time when students were writing down definitions. Students could create a problem for the next group/class period to solve. It would also be interesting to try this between classes because there would be some pride/competition factor incorporated.

A fast way of sharing ideas is through todaysmeet which I really enjoyed exploring. It is very easy to use. I would prefer for the long run using something such as edmodo but for something quick, todaysmeet is nice because there are no hassles of signing in, etc. This would be great for a warm up, again which gets the class motivated and interested. An example of a project would be to name where slope is used in everyday life. Students could make responses through their phones and see the results pop up on the activboard as the warm up.

Another idea would be to have the last class reflect on what they learned and then the next group could get idea of where the last class was able to travel. This way, students will have an end goal in mind when starting the lesson.

Tool 6

I have heard wonderful things about edmodo and will definitely use this in the classroom for next year. At the beginning of this year, I did create an edmodo account but was unsure about how the students would feel about this product. The next class we have coming in is VERY familiar with the tool and teachers tell me that it is easy to start discussions. My only concern was monitoring how the students did  on there and to make sure there was no cyber bullying. Teachers who use this tool tell me tat it is very easy to monitor because you can have an email sent to you search time someone creates a post. This way, I can have better control of the group. It is also great because it is private so the students are protected in that way as well.
Edmodo is great because you can use it for polls, assignment reminders, and of course, online discussion. (I was not sure how to create a link to my edmodo because it is private I posted the link to the website.)

I have seen poll everywhere in use and it is lots of fun! The students have real ownership when they are able to use their own phones to interact with the room rather than the activotes (which they still enjoy). This is a great hook to have at the beginning of a lesson.

Tool 5

I used Prezi and the word cloud generator Tagxedo.

Students get so used to the flipcharts that it is great to mix things up from time to time. Having a prezi of information will grab the students attention by the motions incorporated  There are also some great prezis that are public that I can use to show my students. The link below is a prezi that I found after searching 'Fractions'.

I prefer Tagxedo because you have more options when it comes to editing and you can make the clouds into different shapes. In the classroom, I crated a Tagxedo for my website that incorporated the classroom expectations the students had come up with from the online survey.

Both of these Tools are helpful because they grab the students' attention.