Tuesday, July 7, 2009


I have had a fantastic time with this workshop! It is very well developed and executed. I had some trouble understanding how to embed a few things to my blog, but I figured them out in the end. Even though I spent countless hours trying to figure things out, it was still well worth it. You definitly learn by doing. I even surprised myself and found things I normally wouldn't have. I am hoping to incorporate a classroom blog or wiki in the upcoming school year, if I don't forget how to do all of the cool stuff that I have learned. You know how it is at the beginning of school with all that there is to do. Hopefully, when things slow down, I can get these new things started.
This program was truly something that I needed to do. I have learned so much. Technology is not one of my strong points. I needed to learn more to stay up with all of the kiddos. My fifth grader was blogging and podcasting this year at school. I was very lost and sad that I had no idea about those things. My son was smarter than me on the computer. Teachers need to keep up with the times so we can effectively do our jobs...which is teach. We don't need the kids to teach us. Even though I teach first grade, I need to know about the technology that's out there to use. I feel much better about myself now that I have completed my things.

Thing #23

I have learned so much with this workshop. I can't believe how many different social network sites are out there. I think it's pretty smart to geer some social networks towards interests of subjects and topics, not just for your friendships. I have really liked exploring with Classroom 2.0. I like the way you can search to find information of interests with the click of a topic. This site is definitely a good one to use for educational purposes. There is so much going on: online tutoring, instructions, ideas, questions and answers. What a great way to get more resources.
I like the way the nings are displayed because the page is sectioned off in different areas of discussions. I can pick and choose what section to look at more carefully and what section to skip. I like to view comments to see if it's something that I want to continue to read or not.
I added a badge, some pictures, and comments to my profile on the ning network.

Thing #22

I joined Facebook a few weeks ago because of this workshop. I had intentions on joining earlier, but never got around to it. I have also questioned the privacy of my information being out there for all to see. I did apply all of the settings to be for friends only use, so hopefully that will help. I have had many friends asking me and telling me to get on Facebook all of the time...so I finally did it! So far, I have really enjoyed exploring all of the different features that it has to offer. I have found many friends on Facebook that I haven't seen or talked to in quite a while. I love getting to see pictures of them and their families and getting to chat a bit. Some of my friends have all kinds of added applications on there post. I am not there yet! I have been exploring who is out in the Facebook world and finding all of my friends.
I have come across so many old and new friends, collegues, administrators, and relatives. I can't wait to get my home page all dressed up. I have seen many things to add to facebook to jazz it up, but have not figured out how to do that sort of thing. I can't believe you can even add videos to this stuff. One of my friends posted a video clip of his daughter singing and dancing.
The social networking thing is a lot of fun! I do think even if you don't care about it for yourself, you need to understand it and be able to use it so that everyone is safe. Kids these days really get into this stuff. As a teacher and a parent, I feel that I need to be able to keep up with the times. Adult supervision is always best in any situation.
Students could use this type of networking to help them with homework or any type of project. They could feed off of other students ideas and answers. Sometimes two or more heads are better than one.

Thing #21

Google has lots of things to offer. I never knew it had so much. I really like the igoogle site. A year ago, I had a page similiar to this on my computer before it crashed. I used it as my wallpaper screen. I really enjoyed it, but have not put it back on. I am so glad that I am getting it back together. This one is a little more personalized than the one I had before. I will probably add a few more gadgets, but for now it is as personalized as it's going to get. I really like how I can get this screen opened and see all of the things that are of interest to me in one spot. I love getting the People Magazine news on a daily basis. I am a huge fan of knowing about real people and their lives.
My link is: http://www.google.com/ig

I also experimented with the google calendar. I was very impressed with this calendar. I put in a few dates to see how it all worked. I think this would be a very useful site for just about anyone. It would keep me very organized with my personal agenda.

Another tool in google that I looked at was google books. This site was a great site because you could search any book for information. It gave you an overview of the book, ratings and reviews, and other editions of the book. I searched Diary of a Wimpy Kid which showed 42 reviews. Many people rated it a 5 star book. The web version of this book has been viewed by 20 million online readers since it was launched on Funbrain.com in 2004. It is now averaging 70,000 daily readers. This site was very informative about books. I will be able to use this site when needing to learn more about new books.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Thing #20

Google Doc seems to be pretty neat! I could see how this site could be very handy. I like the way you can create a page, then come back later to add, edit, or finish it. We could use this type of site to create our weekly first grade newsletters or our monthly Thomspon PTA newsletter. We could create the first grade newletters early in the week and tweak them at the end of the week so information in not forgotten. The PTA newsletters are only sent out monthly, so we could do the same for it, just not as quick. I like the way a teacher could give feedback to a student's essay or paper within the googledoc. Since I teach first grade, this would not really work, but if I taught the older students I would give it a try. I thought it could be great for peer editing in the older grades as well.
I created a table for parents to fill out on the first day of school to let me know the way their child gets home from school. I will also create one letting me know the way they will get home for the year since it is usually different after the first day of school.

Thing #19

I enjoyed exploring voicethread. This site seems to be a great classroom tool that could have many great aspects to incorporate into education. I chose a clip of 2nd and 3rd grade students who were practicing reading. I liked the way the teacher recorded their readings so they could go back and hear themselves. I think this is a great activity to work on not only reading, but fluency, expression accuracy and confidence. Our district has a hard time with fluency so doing an activity like this several times a year could be very helpful for students in the younger grades. Even though these students were reading familiar text, they were still struggling with words. This type of tool could also be used to create rewrites of stories. Students could write, illustrate and read their new stories on voicethread to embed on the classroom blog. Presentations could be viewed by anyone and everyone who looks at our blog.

Thing #18

I had a lot of fun doing this activity. I love YouTube. I normally just look for silly things to view to get a little cheap entertainment. I never knew it had so many educational aspects as well. I found that the TeacherTube was very good as well. I like being able to use these clips from YouTube and TeacherTube through my delicious account. Sometimes things on Youtube are not school appropriate so being able to tag them into a different location makes it much safer to view at school as an educational tool. One educational site that I found to put on my blog was a School House Rock clip about interjections. I loved watching these when I was young. Some of the songs have really stuck in my head all of these years. I could use these types of clips to teach all different grammar topics. Another educational site was the Electric Company clib. I use to love letting my students watch this show to help them learn how to be a better reader. I can now still allow them to watch through YouTube. The how to video that I found was how to do a backflip. I chose this video because it physically taught a skill. My daughter is working on her backflip so this was good for her to watch. The video that I chose for fun was the Evian Roller Skating Babies. I saw this video and just loved it. I really like to watch babies do silly things that they normally don't do. These kinds of commercials crack me up!

#1- School House Rock video about interjections.

#2 Electric Company video about word chunking.

#3 How to do a back flip.

#4 Just for fun! I love this skit from Mad TV about orders not being complicated or too crazy!

#5 Just for fun! I loved this commercial about Evian Water. The babies are so hilarious! Hope you enjoy it as much as I have!