Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Friday, June 4, 2010

Reading Teachers & Technology: English With an Edge really caught my attention. I love working hands on in an assignment whenever possible, and Mrs. Brown seemed to push her students to do that. Getting high school students, especially seniors to be intrigued and excited to do their work can be difficult, they are just ready to get out of there. But when they are faced with a challenge that is new and worthy, the results can be extraordinary.

In the case of Mrs. Brown's class, the assignment, incorporating technology and satire into one was the challenge. From the outside that seems like an unusual combination, however today's generation is using technology for almost everything they do, so to incorporate American society and satiric literature is actually perfect .

Brown stated, "Figuring out a way to take advantage of something like YouTube was my aha moment." I felt like this perfectly explained exactly what she was trying to get across. She wanted to keep those students who were possibly suffering from 'senioritis' enthused about learning, and by allowing them to do an assignment with something they already enjoyed, YouTube, it made them want to do the assignment.

I really appreciated this style of teaching because I am a hands-on learner. This assignment touched based for many learning styles, such as those who like to work in groups. Working in groups seems like a great idea for an end of the year assignment, because the students are worn out and ready to leave, their brains barely functioning on a school level, working in a group could help bring new ideas to the table from different points of view. Also, it is a good assignment because it gives an opportunity to those who normally wouldn't make a video assignment or use technology in the following way an opportunity to gain experience and knowledge. For me, even though I am not a technology savvy person and have never made a video assignment, I would much rather do something like that than write an essay on the topic, and I am sure this is true for others as well. By just opening a new teaching style, the students are much more likely to be enthusiastic, which held true in this case.

I had a high school teacher who like to teach outside the box. This was an honors English class and it is honestly the class that i learned the most in and felt prepared me for college the best. WE did have to read novels and write reports, but we would do these average assignments in unusual ways. For example, when reading The Scarlet Letter, a classic piece of literature, as a class we acted out the scenes instead of just reading it on our own. It really helped to hear it, see it, and be able to connect to something other than the pages of the book. In the same class, we also had a report to do on any American classic novel we wanted to read, and then she allowed us to present the report in any manner we wanted. Some student worked on a PowerPoint presentation while others made films about the books they had read. It was open to every student to do what they felt comfortable with and in a way that would present their abilities the best.

Although I enjoyed hearing about this learning style, the biggest question I had was how could i incorporate something like this into an elementary classroom, which is where I hope to one day teach. How could I get younger students interested in an assignment while incorporating technology? I realized that with the amount of computers in homes today, chances are many students will already have some technology use before they reach my classroom. However, there may also be some students who don't have access to a computer like others. Or be unable to drive themselves to a place where the technology is available like a high school student could. This made me think that if I could incorporate some forms of technology assignments in the elementary classroom, it would be necessary that I leave time for the students to work in class. There are many online sites for younger students that teach counting, math, spelling, etc. and maybe to just let the students and parents aware of these sites would be a great way to allow students to explore technology on their parents watch. Just informing the parents about what is out there could be a good place to start.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Emerging Technology: #1

I have chose to explore the site gabcast as the podcasting emerging technology. Gabcast is a podcasting site that allows you to record a message, conference call, or other audio and easily post it on the site. The site also allows you to record personal audio greetings, hold interviews, and even verbally describe items on ebay!
The site was very simple to use. When signing up it gives step bu step details on how to set up a new channel. However, once in the channel selection, I had a hard time maneuvering back to where I started. I would suggest writing out exactly what you want to say before recording the podcast so you aren't stumbling through it. Podcasting does seem to have its benefits such as being able to more clearly express emotions that may be lost in a solely written form. I also like the fact that it can be accessed and used without having to purchase a microphone so less technology savvy people (such as myself) can use the phone and still be able to enjoy all its benefits. Although you do receive 5 free minutes, it does cost 10 cents per additional minutes to record, which is a downside.
I personally don't see myself using this device as just something to do in my free time, however as an educator it could be used to post information for parents or students who have missed a class to explain assignments. It could also be used to post lectures for college level students to use a reference.

My gabcast is actually these question we needed to answer on this blog. To listen to my gabcast visit:

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Emerging Technologies: Smilebox

Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: Fall 2009 [KJT]
Create your own scrapbook - Powered by Smilebox
Create your own digital scrapbooking design

For my second emerging technology, I chose to work with Smilebox. Smilebox is an online design site that allows its users to create digital scrapbooks, invitations, slideshows, calendars and more. This site is very useful for many reasons. I love to scrapbook, however it is very time consuming. This allows the user to pick a pre-created design and add personal photos. Their is also options of choosing background colors that match the theme as well as how many pictures to add to each page, the amount of decoration on each page and text as well.
The site was very easy to use and was free to sign up. It is very user friendly on account that it narrows down the many options by making your own personalized choices. First you choose if you want to make a design for a holiday, family, baby, etc. After narrowing down the first choice you can decide if you want to design a postcard, invite, scrapbook, etc. It narrows down each choice until you find exactly what you want to design. Then downloading and what to put where is all that is left. After it is complete, it is possible to post scrapbooks and other designs on various websites such as blogger and facebook. It also allows you to buy the product for $3.99 with access to printing it. I feel like this site is very useful because it allows you to share an entire scrapbook over the internet with people who may not be able to see personal, hard copies of scrapbooks at your home. Being able to email and post your creations makes it possible for everyone to enjoy the adventures you get to capture and further design.
I would suggest just playing around with the site. There are a lot of designs to choose from so finding the right one for me was the most difficult part. Although the pages and words are already set, be sure to notice that on the right side of the design, you can choose a different layout of photos for the page, amount of design, and different text.
Working with Smilebox was A LOT of fun. I absolutely LOVE scrap booking but it is very time consuming. I would definitely suggest this site for anyone who loves to be creative but doesn't have a lot of time. I am sure I will use this website again!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


I am Christie (& the little cutie in my picture is my son, Kaesyn James)! I am a freshman at IUPUI studying elementary education. While I am passionate about working with children and making a difference in others lives, I am not 100% sure elementary education is the exact major I want to pursue. I am always willing to give anyone or anything a chance, so I am officially an education major and as a result am enrolled in summer W200 course. And as assigned, I am making a blog.
I have NEVER blogged before. I have never even read someone else's blog. And I actually don't even know anyone who has a blog. However, it doesn't seem to be that difficult. I really like that fact that I can personally choose the colors and fonts and fun stuff for my personal page. I still don't know that I have everything figured out, but I'm working on it. I would suggest to other first time bloggers to just look around and take time to figure out how to manage each section of the blog cite. It seems like a lot of details, but I don't think it will be too overwhelming. I am open to suggestions or things I should know.
Thanks :]
Christie Dawn