Saturday, December 17, 2011

Journal #7: Creating my Personal Learning Network

A PLN is a Personal Learning Network.  A personal learning network is a collection of information and contacts that can be used to gain knowledge that I use to contribute to my career as a teacher.  Some different tools that I used in my PLN are: Twitter, Diigo, Digital Discussion Forums (Ning), and Classroom 2.0.  PLN is such an awesome resource because the technology world is evolving every day and the resources are unlimited.  As a teacher I can use my PLN for new ideas from other educators.  I can share my ideas also with educators. 

Twitter:  I chose a variety of pages from education to health.  The first one is reubenhuffman because he is a Sociology and Tech teacher, which I found very interesting.  My minor is Sociology so I found that I could use his resources and ideas.  I also chose krains she is a teacher and I really enjoyed reading her tweets so I started following her.  I chose First5ca because it is an educational page and since I want to be a teacher I figured this would be useful.  I chose educationweek because it talks about weekly journal and has some very interesting and useful information.  Lastly I chose HealthJoinln because it talks about the ways you can stay healthy and fit they had a lot of great ideas.

Diigo: Diigo has been an awesome resource there has been so many times that I am not able to write everything down or do not have time to take all these notes.  Diigo is a great resource when doing research because you can save the page and highlight the important things instead of writing it all down.  My Diigo Library is very large.  There educational bookmarks that include: lesson plans, games for kids, and ideas for the classroom.  There are bookmarks about cyber safety and the legal issues that come with it.  One bookmark that is specific is Kathy's guide for educators.  It was awesome resource and a great way to learn so many interesting things.  I tagged a few of them PLN because they were great resources when creating my PLN and contributed to the making of it.

(Ning):  I joined Classroom 2.0 and put the badge on my blog page.  As I was browsing around the classroom 2.0 website I was so excited to see all of the exciting information it had.  I looked through the blog pages that were connected to classroom 2.0 and they had a lot of great examples and ideas.  There were different blog page groups for elementary, middle and high school.  I watched a video about the top 10 proven classroom management tips for teachers.  I found the video very interesting and would use something like this in my own classroom.  I found some very cool pictures of different art projects and projects that can be done in the classroom.  This website is awesome for all teachers and educators and people who want to share their ideas and pick up new ideas.  As a new teacher I will use all my resources to make me a better more well rounded teacher.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Journal #10

Belch, H. (2011, December/January). The dark side of social netweorking. 39(4), Retrieved from

When looking for an article to read and write on I came across Teachers Beware!! The Dark Side of Social Networking!  I was interested right away because this is something that we all have to deal with now.  Almost everyone has a facebook page and for the most part it is about our personal lives.  We have friends and family posting comments on our page, being tagged in pictures and so forth.  There are times that we post something because we are having a bad day or are sad.  We might go out with friends to a bar and take a group photo and have a few drinks in the background.  Most teachers are not aware but these comments and photos can cost you your job.  If these are seen my co workers or students it will be addressed and taken to the principle as a teacher we all have to be very careful what we post and write.  Teachers and students maintain their constitutional protections at school.  They also have some protection outside of school when speaking as private citizens on matters of public concern.  If caught with anything on your page that might be questionable a few things may happen.  Anexus can be established between the teacher’s behavior and his or her effectiveness.  The behavior causes or could cause a disruption to the educational process.  The behavior is considered damaging to the school reputation.  These are things that they will act upon if they see.  According to the article teachers need to be educated on was is ok and not ok so they are not losing their jobs.  This is something that every teachers needs to take seriously and make sure they are being aware!

1. Should every teacher delete and stop social networking?
- I do not think every teacher needs to delete their facebook pages, but I think every teacher needs to think will this affect my job or not if I write this or post this picture.  Every teacher should be posting and commenting as if their students were looking at it every day.  There are a lot of security setting on facebook that could be set, so everyone needs to make sure they are using this.
2.  Should school's take this situation serious?
- All schools should take this very seriously becaue teachers are teaching the youth and need to be positive role models.  Teachers should keep their personal life out of school and the school needs to be aware of what is going on.

Journal #9

Lamb, A. (2011, November). Reading redifined for a transmedia universe. Retrieved from

"Reading Redefined for a Transmedia Universe", was a very interesting article.  This day in age everything is becoming electronic based and technology is evolving by the day.  Many of our reading is all done on line or on our iPads, Kindles, anything electronically based.  Instead of caring around a backpack full of books we are condensing them into one handheld device.  There are many advantages and disadvantages to reading on these devices.  According to the article reading is the process of constructing meaning from symbols.  A book is a published collection of related pages or screens.  These devices can be used for children with special needs and for English language learners.  iPhone and iPads such as the app for Donald Crews Freight Train, has renewed students in interactive storybooks.  But they say these might not be the best for children or students.  There is also a lot of distractions when reading on an electronic based book.  There is so much eye candy on the page or on the device so it may be distracting at times when reading.  Overall these devices are evolving everyday and are a great way to read and learn.

1.  Are they going to eliminate text books and hard back books altogether?
- I do not believe they will eliminate them all together but I think electronic based text will get more popular.  I believe that these devices will be used more in classrooms and at the school level. 

2. Every reader has a certain preference on how they read will these new tools include everyone?
- These new technology tools are made so that everyone is happy.  The books come in all shape and sizes and are supposed to fit everyones needs.  If not there is still the old fashion paper book.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Journal #8: Adaptive Technology

Define AAC:  AAC is an area of assistive technology that "attempts to compensate (either temporarily or permanently) for the impairment and disability patterns of individuals with severe expressive communication disorders (i.e. the severely speech-language and writing impaired)" (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 1989). It is an inclusive term for any system that facilitates communication that can include strategies, techniques, and/or devices that support an individual’s expressive communication.

 Define/Explain tool:  Low tech tool: I chose the eye gaze board as a low tch tool.  I will need a clear plastic board to hold up in fron of students face.  For students who can not use their hands and arms to reach or point.  I will use photographs of students, objects, or vocabulary for a book/activity.  Icons to discuss weather.  Icons to choose materials for art, snacks or selct items to use in a cooking activity.  Icons to answer questions true/false and multiple choice.  Use miniture objects to students who do not understand that photographs have meaning.
High tech tool:  I chose this Mac program for my high tech tool.  For students with cognitive disabilities, the Mac is equipped with Text-to-Speech (TTS) technology that can read aloud a selection of text or an entire document. Mac TTS includes various male and female voices, including a more natural-sounding voice named Alex. Alex actually pauses to “breathe” when speaking long passages, and sounds as good at high speed as he does at normal speaking rates. Mac TTS works with all applications that support the OS X Speech engine, including Mail, iChat, and TextEdit.

Define input device: An input device that transfers data into a computer to be processed. Most people use keyboards as an input device for their computer, but individuals with communication problems need various ways to input information into computers.
Hardware option: Yellow-Keys version is great for visually impaired, including seniors, and LD, and any population that needs large characters!  Keyboard is standard size with standard size keys.  I will have these in my classroom for students who cannot use a regular keyboard. 
Software option:  There are countless 'educational games' on the market that are merely arcade games with a few maths or spelling questions tossed in.  Drill and practice may have its place, but it can only reinforce information that children already know. Much better value are programs that let the children explore a variety of concepts. Some of the better programs offer both 'Question and Answer' and 'Explore' modes of play. Activities that children can relate to real life will help them make those links from concrete to abstract concepts while building on their knowledge of the world.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Journal #6

Parr, B. (2011, July 16). Google : The complete guide. Retrieved from
Google+: The Complete Guide By: Benn Parr
-Google+ is the search giants latest attempt to create a social network that rivals Facebook. Google+ launched in June 28, 2011and was led by Vic Gundotra, Googles SVP of social.  Google+ offers a variety of features including circles, stream and sharing content, search and sparks, hangouts, photos, games, and Google for business.  Many people who use Google+ say they like Google+ over Facebook because Google+ has more to offer and is a new updated version.  With Google+ you can share certain things with certain people within your circle.  Google+ is called that because they want it to be an extension from everything else that Google has to offer.  The only thing one needs to do to sign up for Google+ account is to create a gmail account.  Google+ uses the latest technology and is current and up to date with all new features.  Google+ is very strict about their privacy settings.  Google has in the past been sued for their privacy issue so when creating Google+ they knew they had to crack down.  Google+ is going to be the new Facebook before we know it!!
-How is Google+ going to one up all of it's competitors?
   Google+ is going to make sure it is current with all new technology equipment and what it has to offer.  It needs to stay strict on the privacy setting to people feel secure posting personal information onto the web.  Most of all it needs to be different and offer things that no other cite offers.

Brogan, C. (2011, September 30). Educators- google plus is for you. Retrieved from
Educators: Google Plus is for You By: Chris Brogan
-Google+ is great for educators because educators can share stuff within their circle.  Teachers can share lesson plans from all over the world that only you and other teachers can see.  You can seek and respond on others comments.  There is a tool on Google+ that educators can collaborate with each other using whiteboard feature.  The ideas and concepts you can get from Google+ is endless.  
-Is Google+ relevant for teachers or further educators?
 I think Google+ is an awesome tool to use.  As educators you can never have enough ideas and tools.  Sharing lesson plans with other teachers is amazing.  The fact that you have control of who you send your information and who sees it is the best part.


Friday, October 21, 2011

Journal #5

pIEDRAHITA, C. U. D. (2011). Spreading ed teach to spanish speaking educators. Retrieved from

In the article “Spreading Ed Teach to Spanish –Speaking Educators” by Claudia Uribe de Piedrahita was very interesting. I chose this article because we really don’t talk about Spanish speaking education. Claudia Uribe and her husband manage the NGO which is the nongovernmental organizations. The NGO is dedicated to improving the quality of primary and secondary education in Latin America through the effective use of ICT, focusing on less-privileged schools and communities. She was originally not into education and had a different field of practice but after her 22 year old son died she wanted to make a difference for all of the underprivileged students out there. Uribe de Piedrahita works tirelessly to connect Spanish Speaking educators to modern tools, but she knows there are many more pieces to the puzzle than merely offering support and education. She then in 2001 recognized the lack of Spanish language resources for teachers, the foundation launched Eduteka a cite packed with information about and resources for integrating technology into the classroom. I think what she is doing is so great. She is out to help everyone around her and make sure these students are getting the same education as anyone else.

What can we do to make sure that Spanish speaking educators are getting the same resources? We need to make sure we are putting our knowledge out there and they are able to get the information we are giving them.

How can we as educators get more involved and start programs like Claudia did? We need to put ourselves out there in the community and research different topics, and let people know we are interested.

Journal #4

 Basham, J. B., Perry, E. P., & Meyer, H. M. (2011). It's in the bag. Retrieved from

Reading the article “It’s in the Bag”, by James Basham, Ernest Perry, and Helen Meyer, at first I was a little confused about digital backpack but by the end I fully understood. The digital backpack is an actual knapsack that contains an array of digital and hardware tools, resources, and instructional materials handpicked to engage learners in project or problem based learning experiences. I think this is the coolest thing ever and is a great way to learn and an awesome way to use all resources. I loved when they used the digital backpack with the elementary students and they went to the zoo. It made the students really think and made them use all their resources. It took imagination, creativity and time to do the project. Inside the digital backpack there are three main components: foundational technology, modular technology, and instructional support materials. The digital backpack provides a powerful, flexible, and teacher friendly design for engaging learners of different ages, interests, and abilities.

If the school you are at does not have the resources to be able to do digital backpack, what can you do about it? It is very important that every school has the resources needed for the students to learn, but if that’s not the case then push for it. Get the parents onboard; get the administration on board till you get what you need to provide the best learning environment for each student.

How do you make sure you stay current on all technology uses? Always make sure you are on top in the technology world. Go to workshops, use any social networking cites and ask questions.