I must be honest; when watching the video and reading the articles on Web 2.0 tools, I was a bit overwhelmed. It seems as though there are an infinite number of possibilities for anything you want to do. The way the tools were categorized and summarized was very helpful, however, being a first grade teacher I feel limited in the tools that my students will be able to use. With just learning to read and write, varying background knowledge, and very little access to technology, incorporating Web 2.0 is very daunting. I would love to start a teacher - student communication blog, but worry that the student's typing skills would hinder their progress. Purposeful planning is very important for any lesson, but especially when using computers. Many times I am running around trying to help individuals while others are waiting for me. They lose valuable time. My ideal situation would be to have professional development on using a handful of effective Web 2.0 tools. Not just show and tell, but actually giving us enough time to really play and explore. It would also be nice if my district had 1:1 technology and assistants to help put out the inevitable fires. In a perfect world. For now i will take the advice in the Light article and find a few tools that I could use consistently to engage my students while also incorporating purposeful learning (Light, 2011).
Light, D. (2011.) Do web 2.0 right. Learning & Leading with Technology, Feb. 2011. Retrieved 7 May 2017 from https://live.wilkes.edu/content/enforced/227585-20148.201720/web20_classroom.pdf?_&d2lSessionVal=2UskWsxeJnLFAX7Jff4SlWBcv&ou=227585
In my district we are just beginning to put an initiative on technology in the primary grades. As of now there is no set model for using technology to enhance teaching and learning. However, my district does rely heavily on the use of Bloom's Taxonomy. We are reminded to create our lessons based on the higher level thinking skills of evaluation and synthesis. If I were to choose a model, I would go with SAMR. It is very similar to Bloom's, which I am very familiar with, but is designed specifically for the use of technology tools. In evaluating this model, I feel it would be an easier transition from the already familiar Bloom's Taxonomy.
Personal Learning Networks
Being an older student, my personal learning networks are somewhat “old school”. I rely on my colleagues the most. During faculty meetings, professional development days, and even lunchtime we collaborate on lesson ideas, learning and teaching styles and classroom management tips. As far as online networking, I use Teachers Pay teachers for many resources, but I have never done any social networking for educational reasons. I have a Facebook account which I never use. Beyond that I am afraid this old dog needs some new tricks.
When evaluating what networks are most important to me, I would have to say my colleagues. I am very fortunate to work with an amazing group of teachers. We help, plan, strategize, brainstorm and learn from each other every day. Honestly this group of professionals have been instrumental in my growth as a teacher.
Utecht's scale was very interesting to me. Again, I hate to play the age card, but I find this scale may only apply to those who have grown up with technology. If I had to place myself on this scale for PLN, I would be at Stage 1 – Immersion. However, when it comes to technology in general, I am at a Stage 5 – Balanced. Here is the part that may be age related…I don’t think I will ever hit Stage 3 – Know it All, and I believe I have already achieved Stage 4 – Perspective. At my age you have already put into perspective that life is too short to spend every waking moment in front of a screen. And although we are life-long learners, I do not plan on missing out on life to try to know it all.
I do believe that PLN are valuable and have their place in education. I’m sure that once I immerse myself more, I will find networks that will help me utilize technology and learn many new ways of teaching and learning. Through this course my personal plan is to seek out and become familiar with more personal learning networks, narrow them down to the most effective ones, and start to explore new ideas from millions of educators around the world.
Utecht, Jeff. "Stages of PLN Adoption." The Thinking Stick. Foliovision, n.d. Web. 11 May 2017. <http://www.thethinkingstick.com/stages-of-pln-adoption/>.
Well, I was able to successfully login and create a Twitter account. Believe it or not, I also figured out how to tweet about something and reply to someone else’s tweet. I found some interesting articles and websites to share and follow. One of our classmates started a “one line” poetry creation through Twitter. I thought that was a great idea for using this tool. There were also a few fellow classmates who used the polling tool on Twitter. This could be a great way to gain information on students’ prior knowledge, or to assess what they have learned as a result of teaching. There were some interesting tweets about different strategies and teaching tools as well.
I had a very difficult time following tweets to a place that gave me more information. For example, I was interested in a tool that a classmate tweeted about that turns your ipad into a smartboard, #doceri, When I click on #doceri, it only took me to a page with lots of tweets about the tool. Nothing really led me to what Doceri is or how to use it. I ended up searching Google and found a lot more information.
As with any new tool, it took a while to understand the concept behind this networking site. It took a tremendous amount of time to explore and I still feel a bit lost frankly. There are so many hashtags in one tweet and I am not sure where to look to get more information. It was very frustrating to be interested in something, searching through hashtags and tweets, and finally going outside of Twitter to search for more information on the topic.
In conclusion, I do see the benefits in using Twitter to network with other educators. I was fascinated by the amount of interesting things people shared. However, I will need someone to show me how to maneuver through the tool efficiently to make it a worthwhile experience.
• Who is the audience for the blog you are reading and does the content, writing style, and navigation meet the need of that audience?
All of these blogs are mostly targeting the education community, however, there are others in the community who would be interested in the information. The writing style in most of the blogs is informational, intelligent and thought-provoking. The Daring Librarian is written more like a journal of good teaching practices that the author has used and is passing on to others.
• Is there anything similar in the blog-writing styles across all the blogs you read?
All the blogs are written in a way that encourages feedback or comments in some way. However, some are more scholarly than others. It depends on the purpose of the blog.
• Is reading a blog different from other types of reading? Why or why not?
A blog is similar to other online articles and can even be formatted to closely resemble a magazine article. The difference is in how you can navigate through the blog and pick out only the topics that interest you. It also allows for comments which enhance the power of communication and learning.
• Does it seem that writing blog entries (not comments) is different from other types of writing?
Writing a blog entry is similar to creating any piece of writing. You have a topic, a genre, a style of writing and an audience to whom you convey your purpose. The difference lies in the ability to comment. This can keep the topic of discussion going indefinitely into many directions.
• Do the comments from others on a blog post help make the blog post more meaningful?
Most comments make the blog more meaningful. There are always some that are off topic, inappropriate, or unhelpful in general. Comments that spark new ideas and ways of thinking about a topic are central to the purpose of a blog.
• What aspects of a blog would enhance student learning and why?
The purpose of a blog is to engage the audience in the topic. To get people thinking and adding to or arguing against the subject. Having a countless number of people collaborating can enhance student learning by engaging to add to the conversation or learn from others who have commented.
I was very nervous about this podcast. I have never done one before. However, this was the easiest task. ipadio made it simple. Signing up and recording my voice on my iphone took minutes. The hardest part was trying not to mess up my speech and getting it right in one try. When I went back in to ipadio, there was my podcast waiting for me with the rss feed and URL clearly listed. I hope it works and sounds as good on the receiving end.
I found Feedly very easy to use. It took no time at all to find and subscribe to the various feeds. The organization tool was extremely helpful to sort the feeds into specific categories. Feedly is a great way to collect and sort large amounts of information easily without the need to search for the sites each time you want to access them.
For primary students who need a lot of direction when searching the web, this would be a great way to organize a few great sites for them. This would allow for more learning and less time searching. Teachers could preview the sites to check for appropriate content.
I have thought of starting a kid’s blog for my students. Feedly would be a useful tool to collect and organize each student’s blog in one place for me and the students. Students could be reminded of assignments or class news by having the ability to know when a new post has been created by the teacher or another student.
Although I teach first grade, and students need a lot of support when using technology, I am willing to try Feedly, as it was very easy to navigate.
The question I chose to ask in my survey was, "Are k-1 grade students able to comprehend a lesson on evaluating information?". Since I teach this age group, I am struggling with how to represent this information so that the students will understand the lesson. The slide show that I created revolves around very basic principals of evaluating information. I wanted to incorporate images that would engage the students, but also help to connect the meaning of the slide. My slide show can be accessed by clicking this link: Google Slide Show
Creative Commons is something we do touch upon in first grade. We do a simple lesson on how the students would feel if they drew their best picture, wrote their best poem, or wrote their best song, and someone found it. And what if this someone decided to say that it was their picture, poem, or song? The students really seem to connect to this lesson and understand why it is important to always give credit where credit is due.