Wow! I can’t believe the semester is almost over and we are already working on our final project. I have learned so much about PBL in the past month. I never knew about it, and now I love it. I hope to one day incorporate it into my teaching. Since today is an open topic post, I decided to write about my web quest. I have not done as much as I would have liked, yet! But, I like it so far! I decided to do my Webquest on Martin Luther King Jr’s legacy and how it has created a diverse culture in our schools. I am really enjoying this topic because I feel students can emerge themselves in it and benefit in so many ways.
1. Students will be able to see how far America has come since the Civil Rights Movement.
2. Students will evaluate the diverse culture they live in. They will do this through interviewing their peers on their ethnicity, culture, background, etc.
3. They will evaluate the work of MLK and how he left a legacy that still continues today.
4. They will understand the power of his movements. I have created roles for each student where they will be able to see the way MLK made his actions speak louder than his words. (EX: lunch counter sit in)
5. And so many more (that I am still thinking about)
Students will understand the legacy of MLK all while seeing things through his eyes. I really hope they are able to accomplish this challenge in the way I envision it.I am just really excited to actually finish this challenging project and one day use it on students.
I like your rubric. Until I transferred to La Verne, I never really had a teacher use a rubric to state their expectations. It sounds silly, but it is so nice to actually have a rubric to know what the teacher is expecting. Rubrics are such an easy way for teachers to lay out their expectations without having to explain it to the class. Before ULV, I went to Citrus and teachers would just kind of tell you what they expect. Even for younger ages, it is good to have a rubric for them. Often times students get confused when an instructor will tell them about a project, however, with a rubric students will KNOW 100% what the instructor wants.
I would much rather have my students create a quality project that is short and direct than a quantity project that is lengthy and lacks relevant details. However to create a A+ project, students must find a balance between quality and quantity. For my webquest, I plan on grading students based on having quantitative and qualitative criteria. The webquest I am currently creating is on Martin Luther King Jr. and how his legacy creates a diverse culture in our schools. Each student will have a different role (role ideas are not secure yet), and in each role they will be assigned a specific task that allows them to use technology and master the content. For example, each student will need to use a video or animated character tool such Animoto or Voki where they will be required to demonstrate in a quality clip or phrase that summarizes how MLK has impacted a diverse culture in their school, classroom, family, etc. and how we would be different if it wasn’t for his legacy. I will be grading for quality rather than quantity in this part of the webquest. For quantity, I will use their storyboard to grade for quantity. Each student will create a storyboard for that is more detailed than there clip or phrase from Animoto or Voki. This is where quantity will come into play on the storyboard I will be looking for detailed descriptions depicting how they see a diverse culture in their school, classroom, home life, etc. I will be evaluating based on how much information and detail they provide. I understand it is a difficult task for students to balance quantity and quality, but they must find that balance to have a quality project.
I visited the Buck Institute for Education and read about a PBL called the Amazing Race. In this PBL, students will learn how other regions in the United Stated influence their daily lives, and will create an Amazing Race task for another class to do. They are going to be put into groups, and in the groups they will each represent a different region of the United States. Also, they will investigate the different types of geographical regions. After they research, they will create a poster (digital or hard copy) and present it to the class as a group. The project is spilt into three weeks. The first two weeks they will come up with their “Amazing Race” ideas, and learn about climate, regions, and locations. In the final week, they will be assigned their final project. In the final project, the students need to collaborate and create an “Amazing Race” for another class to complete. In the Amazing Race, the students must create challenges and tasks so that other classes will be able to learn about regions, climate, and locations through these tasks. Then, they will also present their challenge to the class.
The resources will be provided by the teacher. In addition, each group will be required to research natural resources and use Google maps to mark where their natural resources are in the region. They will also use Google maps to mark the locations of the bodies of water. In conclusion, this is a well-thought out project and filled with detail for another educator to use in their class.
You can visit the website here: http://www.leadingpbl.org/w/page/41619609/Amazing%20Race–US%20Regions
I read the Practical PBL: Four Tips for Better Implementation on Edutopia. This article was about how project based “learning will change your students’ lives.” After reading this, I was excited. I feel like Project based learning is changing the face of curriculum in the classroom. This article made some excellent points on how practical Project based learning can be.
1. “Collaboration and Responsibility”
A good quality of PBL is having equal collaboration and responsibility between your students. If each student has shared responsibility between each other then they are able to teach each other there part. By doing this, each child is learning and teaching at the same time. It benefits each student individually.
2. “Coaching Teams to Success”
This is so important. In the article, they mention how students always say their best learning experience with teams are in sports. This is because “on those teams, everyone matters.” They do matter, and by coaching your teams. By making sure they know that everyone is important, they will have great learning experiences together.
3. “Know the Goal Before You Go”
Students need to understand the goal of the project. They need to be able to get something out of it. If they are just doing each step of the project, but are not learning something as a whole project. Before starting, each student MUST understand the finish, if not they won’t be fully understanding each step in the process. It is really important for each student to understand their role and responsibility of the project.
In the end, the article I read was super informational and helpful to educators. It helps us know that each student needs to know it is a team effort. Also, they need to understand how important their role is and how they are just as a valuable team player as the others. It is important to get this information across, first. When you set your standards high for the students, they will preform to that level.
In my Foundations in Education class, we were just discussing how children with smartphones (and everyone else with smart phones) are technically the smartest people in the world. This may sound weird, but it is kind of true. Because of the technology in smart phones, we are accessible to the world at our fingertips. You google anything in less than a half a second with over a hundred million results. With this, everyone has access to any information they want at any point in time. By the time I am teaching, I am sure most kids (depending on the age level) will have a cell phone in my class room. This is incredibly beneficial to each student, they can watch screencasts from their phones, take class polls, take simple online quizzes, and they can even check themselves into class. Instead of taking attendance, a teacher can have each child have a QR code on their phone and just wave it over the teacher’s iPad or cellphone each day when they come to school and that checks them in. As a teacher, there are so many things we can do if each child had a cell phone/iPad/tablet accessible to them at all times. I could have my students take notes on their iPads. Moreover, with an app called audio note, students can take notes while recording the teacher lecturing. The app synchronizes to the note taking and when they click on a word it audio plays back what the teacher was talking about. To me, that is amazing. It is so easy to write things done and easily forget why you wrote that down when you get home. Also, through educreations students can create mini-lessons and teach them to each other for practice. Students can also create word clouds, do collaborations through google docs or wikis, etc. There are tons of apps and great things for students to use phones/iPads/tablets in the classrooms. However, I do see a big downfall. First, students being able to access anything on the web is dangerous. They could get into things that are inappropriate. Of course, with limitations and other restrictions schools can prevent that. Also, texting and other usage could be a problem, but that is also an issue with phones not being allowed in the classroom or at school. In the end, I think there are many benefits of students having cellphones/iPads/tablets in the classroom, but at the same time schools can limit their access to the internet.
This week was an eye opener for me because I really didn’t know too much about the Copyright Law and Creative Commons. After, the videos and the reading for the week, I understand how important it is to be aware of copyrighted work. Also, I learned that I am pretty sure a lot of my teachers, previous professors, and other teachers I have observed have broken copyright law in the classroom. Now that I know copyright law and understand the consequences of it, I feel encouraged to be a lot more creative. I feel like if I am more creative in the classroom then I won’t have to worry about breaking copyright law. I am not really sure on the future of intellectual property. I think more and more people are copyrighting their work; therefore, not many people are going to steal copyrighted work. However, I do feel like the copyrighting laws might become more strict because of the access to technology. Since technology is more accessible than ever before, it makes stealing off the internet much easier. As a result, I feel like owners of copyrighted work are going to be more aware of where they are posting their work, and who might be taking it. As for impact in the classroom, I think more educators are going to be careful of what they are using in the classroom. Since there is so much information on the internet, it makes it much more accessible to take a copyrighted piece of work often without realizing. I feel like this would impact the classroom because there is more access than ever before. This goes hand in hand with social networking and collaborative tools because people can post their works or other things that is there intellectual property and others can easily steal it. Of course, with the great use of technology there are some tools that people can use so that no one takes their work. For example, I have seen some websites where you are unable to download their stuff or save to your computer because it is copyrighted. To me, that is really cool and interesting way for people to protect their work. As a result, I feel like their are a lot of pros and cons on the impact of copyrighted work in education. I am not too sure on the direction and the impact it will have in the future, but I am curious to see how it does affect the education world.
This week I researched a tool called the Hemingway App. It is a educational tool that helps students (and anyone who uses it) improve their writing. It is a very simple tool to use. First, you must enter in your piece of writing. However, it can only accept a few paragraphs at one time, so if you have multiple paragraphs you will have to submit them in sections. Once you submit your writing, Hemingway will analyze it and give you a report on your writing. It will tell you many things such as the grade level of your work, how many sentences irrelevant, how many words need rephrasing, etc. The Hemingway goal is to make everyone’s writing “bold and clear.” It is a wonderful tool especially in the world of education. It can reinforce and instill many writing techniques into students at any age.
If I had to make a prediction about the Hemingway App, I would say it will boom in the world of education. It is a valuable tool that should be placed in school especially since its free and no membership is required. Personally, I feel a lot of students and non-students struggle with writing, and sometimes people don’t have the money or resources to get the required help needed. Even though Hemingway doesn’t analyze if sentences are fragments, run-ons, and doesn’t check correct tense usage, it is very helpful to those who struggle with making their writings bold and clear. It may gain these features in the future especially since Hemingway is extremely new. Also, they are working on a desktop version which will have many features, so I believe this will be very beneficial to the world of education. I believe it will positively impact many students and educators especially since it is free and very accessible to parents from home. As of right now, I really don’t see any pitfalls besides that it doesn’t check for fragments and run-ons which I think would be wonderful and helpful to many. In the end, I really believe Hemingway is a fascinating tool that I will be using and recommending to many friends and family.
Today, there are so many different social media networks and most people don’t belong to just one. The hard part is picking which to use and how to use them. When using them in positive ways, social media is very beneficial. For example, you can communicate with family or friends you don’t see from very often. For that reason, I use social media. I enjoy that you can see your family/friends and reconnect with people you haven’t seen for awhile. Also, you can be up to date with others lives. However, that can be a negative because some people use their social media pages to tell you everyday what kind of breakfast they have eaten or use it as an outlet to vent from their life. I support social media for personal reasons like I mentioned above because I like to communicate with family who I am unable to see everyday. I believe social media is beneficial in terms of education especially with all the social media sites educators can belong to for free. For instance, Pinterest is wonderful for educators and has tons of tips and resourceful ideas/ projects available. Also, there is a lot of resources available to teachers through social media such as common core standards help, different writing strategies to teach, and so much more.
For cultural reasons, I am not sure social media is quite as beneficial. I think for young students who use social media it can be negative. As most of us know, kids and sometimes adults can be very cruel to each other. With the usage of social media, it makes bullying much more accessible. Before kids who were bullied were only bullied at school, but with everyone able to access the internet bullying can happen anytime from any place. So for those reasons I think it is negative for our younger generations of children. Overall, I believe if used in the correct ways social media is wonderful.
My experience with Cloud ware has been good. In these past couple weeks, I have learned so much about all the different things you can do with technology especially involving cloud ware. Even though I have used cloud ware in the past, I really didn’t understand how it worked. For example, I have used google docs in the past, but I had never used them in the way we did this week. It is fascinating that cloud ware holds everything, such as contacts, emails, pictures, etc., you store in it, and you are able to access it from any computer, mobile device, tablet, or iPad. I have grown to love cloud ware especially on my iPhone. Anything I have on my iPhone automatically syncs on my MacBook and I love it. With cloud ware, everything is accessible, easy to maintain, and manage. Once I understood how cloud ware worked, it was much more manageable.
As for educational uses, there are so many ways to incorporate cloud ware into teaching. One of the easiest things with cloud ware is you can prepare a lesson at home, store it in your cloud, and then access it at school without having to e-mail it or print it. Second, cloud ware is beneficial to students. They are able to start reports at school and finish them at home easily. This is one of my favorite options about cloud ware. You can easily start your students and show them how to a project or report using google docs. With google docs, the students can simply use it from any device or computer. Lastly, I would use cloud ware to store lesson plans and projects.