Tuesday, June 1, 2010

921-Session 4

Session 4 & Deliverable #2

To gear you up (and psyche you up) for this session I'd like you to watch this. You have to click on it twice. "Did You Know? 2.0" :

As you begin to work on, and think about, your project for Deliverable #2, (details in the syllabus and please post in both the blog and the wiki) consider using these resources to guide your integration with the students:

Past semester participants' comments and Deliverble #2's:

Spring '10
Spring '09
Older comments.

Rubric for student comments:

And don't forget to visit your peers' blogs. Pamela's elementary school now has 11 bloggers, including the Principal!!! Wow! Her school only started on the blogging bandwagon last summer when one of her co-workers took my 920 class. Great job Narragansett Elementary School!

And also check out Jennifer Geller's posting. It traveled so far around the blogosphere that the author of our main text, Will Richardson, even responded by leaving a comment on her blog. These examples are just tip of the iceberg. Explore and check things out for yourself.

And if you haven't already, check out the Answers.com tool I've added to our blog. Just double click on any word and check it out with these words: Andragogy, Pedagogy
There's even an audio option.

Someone was looking for information on 'copyrights.' One way to avoid copyright issues for online images, (or any other kind of file) is to do a search for files that are 'free to use and share'. For example, try a Google Advanced search, but choose the 'usage rights' option. Once there you can decide which kind of 'usage restriction' suits your needs. In this example, I did an GAdvanced search for butterfly, chose 'free to use and share', and then also restricted my search to Flickr.com (an online image site). It takes a few steps, but you can eliminate copyright issues entirely with this process. It also works for PowerPoints. In this example I did a GAdvanced search for caterpillar and restricted my file type to: PowerPoints that were 'free to use and share' and found these were my results.


One of the education blogs that I subscribe to also recently wrote on this topic. Check it out: http://www.consultpivotal.com/powerpoint_reform.htm

On another topic---Lynne and Joanne were discussing the editing ability of posts. Blogs are more static than wikis (which we'll be discussing later in the semester), so when you post a comment to someone else's blog and you want it changed, then your only option is to delete it and rewrite it. Lynne correctly mentioned that when you are in your own blog and you write a posting then you can always go back and edit it when you are in your 'Dashboard' screen, so these are some options.

David C. also mentioned,

"As the availability of 'going online' becomes more affordable and the price
of technology continues to decrease, I'm sure we'll see even more families in
our classrooms join the world wide web. With this in mind, educators must also
do everything we can to use the tools that our students are using in order to
reach them. It makes me think back to when the second or third generation ipod
came out... I remember hearing about the first colleges that were making
podcasts for their students to listen to. (Will we learn anything about

making/using podcasts this semester? - just a side thought)"

Well David mentions how some colleges and universities are making podcasts, but it goes much further than this. Dozens of schools are now recording professor's lectures (some video, but most just audio) and putting them online, along with the support material for the course. But even more powerful than this is the fact that they are also allowing the lectures to be accessed from anyone in the entire world.

It is part of the "Open Educational Resources" movement. If this topic interests you, and you decide to explore this path, then check out some of the cool things out there, like this interactive site on "Trapezoids."

Even more important however is the number of colleges that are beginning to subscribe to this philosophy. Just check out this list of schools, and then take a look at all 1900 different courses that MIT makes freely available. We go into a lot more depth on this topic in my edc922 course.

I also subscribe to this philosophy. By now most of you have noticed that all of our weekly sessions are licensed under Creative Commons. We'll go into more detail later in the semester about this movement when we begin talking about 'wikis' and start to create and edit some.

David also mentions,

"I remember Dave mentioning that he doesn't even have to log on to the
blog to make comments.. he can do it from his email. Was I just hearing things
wrong? If not, I am not sure where to go to set up my blog so I can work though
my email. If that is possible, then I could open one less application and work
solely though Mail."

Well, when you are logged into your Blogger account go to the Dashboard option and from there choose, 'Settings' and then both, 'Emails' and 'Comments.' Within both of those tabs you'll see the options to email postings to your blog, as well as have every comment emailed to you.

Lastly, keep on checking each other's blogs and don't be afraid to post a comment or two. Those who have already begun using them in class can use your comment as an example to the students that there are other people around the world reading their work.

Also, remember that if you are having trouble downloading a session you can always find a back-up copy at Authorstream.com Once there just do a search for edc921 and pick the appropriate session.

Happy blogging,

PS----One last reading for this session. It's worth the quick skim:



Mrs. Limoges said...

My summary for deliverable 2 is to incorporate text to world connections with characterization into our new blog site. The students in my 4th/5th remedial reading class have just finished reading the novel Because of Winn-Dixie. In the novel, the main character has a list of 10 things her father has told her about her absent mother. We are going to review that section and discuss how the list creates a picture of the mother for the reader. I will then model my own list of a colleague the children know. The students will then randomly choose a name of a classmate and create their own list describing that person. Each list will be posted on the blog, and reviewed by the group who will try to determine the identity of that person in their comment. The students will have rubric to guide them. I'll post the formal lesson plan with standards, etc. as we progress!

Mrs. Borges said...

Right now the music teacher and I are working on developing a multi-disciplinary unit on Indian instruments with a class of 8th graders that we have on alternate days. This is a homogenously group of “algebra” students and since it is 4th quarter, we are hoping to develop something that really makes them reach as exploratory learners. Before this class, I might have thought, “great, let’s have them create a PowerPoint together.” However, the readings and model blogs have inspired me to want to do more and sharpen my own skills as well. While the lesson is still developing, I am starting to envision the creation of possibly a wiki on each instrument. In terms of blog incorporation, I think it would be a great place for student questions. Since this is a project they will be working on in small groups, it will be great to have a Q&A resource area and also an area where kids can have dialog about ideas they have or problems they run into. Also, I am testing out a new tool, “diigo” and I really want to know what students think of it. So, one of my posts will be asking them to provide both negative and positive feedback about its use. I should be posting the lesson to this course’s wiki soon. Overall, I’m really excited about the possibilities; however, I am nervous about jumping into using new products that I am not expert in using. As a teacher, it is difficult to remove oneself from the position of having most of the answers, but hopefully, I can show them successful strategies for finding the answers. I wonder if the student’s learning will be deeper than it would be in just creating a PowerPoint, or if they will get so bogged down with the technical aspects, that less time is spent learning about their topic.
Regarding this week’s reasons and explorations, I really liked the video clip “Did You Know 2.0?” I think that would be a fabulous video to show and then have students respond to using the blog. My big concern would be that kids would respond with short answers like “it was cool.” So, to try to anticipate such comments, I would need to develop a blog rubric like the one modeled in this week’s lesson posting. Also, I would preface the assignment by explaining that I wanted their answers to have breadth. One other note was that the link to the trapezoids was so cool and although I do not teach math, I passed it along to my colleagues who are covering polygon areas this quarter.

Jackie Fagan said...

Deliverable #2 integrating an edublog into a lesson plan

Introduction: One of the most commonly asked questions in chemistry is
“Why do we have to know this?”
In this lesson, students will be asked to post a blog applying a subject we have studied in class to a real life situation or career.

Goals: What do you want students to be able to do?
I want students to gain confidence searching the web and sharing what they have learned with the class. I also want students to learn how to make constructive comments to others and respond in turn to comments made about their work. This assignment will give students a real opportunity to see the value of chemistry in every ones lives. It will also allow students to explore various careers in science.

Pre-Activities: This assignment will be given in the 3rd quarter. In the 1st and 2nd quarter students have done 2 projects; one on the history of the atom, and one on the electromagnetic spectrum. Both projects required extensive research. In addition to accumulating knowledge about their topics, students learned how to access information and to determine how reliable the information is. Each project culminates with an oral presentation giving students more confidence speaking in public. The question and answer sessions at the end of each presentation promotes student interactions, setting the stage for blogging interaction.

Writing prompt: for students
After reading the article in class:
(“Why Do I Have to Study Chemistry?” By: G. Kenneth Barker Jr.)
Post a blog on: http://faganchemistryskhs.blogspot.com/ that explores the relationship between a topic we have covered this year in chemistry and real life. Pick a real life situation that is interesting to you and you will be able to make it interesting to others. List at least 2 web sites that gave you information about this situation. In addition you are expected to post comments, give feedback to at least 2 other topics and respond to comments about their own topic. This is a quiz grade.

Extensions and Adaptations:
For different levels I will provide class time and laptops in class. In this way I will be able to provide direction in navigating a variety of search engines provided by the school and assure that all students have internet access. I will also provide a few examples of website that show chemistry connections to our content on my blog.

Scoring guide:
• 2 paragraphs description of chemistry connection 8
(Here is your chance to be make it interesting other students)
• Minimum of 2 web sites used. 4
(Make sure the links work)
• Thoughtful comments on another post 8
Total  20 points (quiz grade)

jfagan said...

By the way, the assignment I explained in deliverable #2 is on my blog. I am working on the wiki part.


I am working on making my blog easier to use.

Mrs. Riley said...

Book Club Blog With Student Interaction

I started a blog for my 5th and 6th grade book club that I would like to see eventually become one of the main communications tools for the club. I am excited about testing this blog out with the students in the fall because, like we have been discussing, there are so many positives for the students. For example in sessions 1 and 2 we learned that students tend to refine their thoughts more and make sure they are producing quality work when they know it will published for all to see. I also hope that the book club blog will be a way for all students to express their opinion freely. I am sure that we have all remarked how students are way more likely to text or email things that they might be to shy to say out loud to someone. Hopefully that student who is too shy to share their opinion might find an outlet in blogging it instead. Another positive to the blog that I see is that communicating through a blog will set the club apart from the same school work they are used to, and like session 3 said, hopefully changes the dynamic of teaching that goes on with the book club.

One potential trial I can see with the book club blog is administration. I can almost bet that my principal would be against it so I need to have a dynamic presentation set when I approach her with the idea. I will definitely go back to Anne’s ideas from session 2 about the teachable moment and show different examples of how this blog can be that moment in the classroom. I will also make sure to include examples of other successful edublogs like Barbara Cohen’s Duck Diaries. And of course I would present administration with a dynamic permission letter home to parents. This letter will “include a description of the technology, how it will be used, [and] what security measures have been put in place” (Richardson 13). Another possible misstep in the blog process would be if the students in the club do not have access to the internet at home. I would have to make sure that there were times available in the library where students could use the Internet to post on the blog.

The unlimited future for the book club blog would be that eventually all book club communication and book discussions would be through the blog. This way the number of students who could join the club would be limitless. If 93% of students are already on the internet then let’s give them a place to refine their critical thinking skills and share educated thoughts with their peers.

Mrs. Charest said...

I had a difficult time thinking about how to incorporate a blog into an assignment. I only see my students for 40 minutes once a week. So, I like for them to spend their time making music. However, one of the national music standards is to evaluate music and music performances. I typically find this standard to be difficult to meet. After reviewing some of the other blogs featured in this class I have realized that the blog is a perfect way for students to evaluate music.
So, my assignment for my students is to respond to a prompt about a music performance we have just seen. By doing this, I will be able to know what my students thought and took away from the performance. I want to inspire a positive dialogue about the performance, so I decided to pose my prompt in a way that would require the students to think about what they enjoyed or found interesting while watching the concert. I wonder if I do this next year, if I could actually get the performer to write on the blog. The lesson is posted on the wiki.

Mr. Schofield said...

Deliverable #2: Blogging in Response to 1984

Opening: During the first ten minutes of class, guide students in the process of accessing and navigating the features of the class blog. Once all students are signed on to the blog, discuss the standards of online propriety in terms of both academics, especially as it relates to grammar and mechanics (no Newspeak/text-speak) and behavior/respect.

Activity One: Students will read the article “Should Google Try to Prevent Terrorism?” by following the link on the blog prompt. After reading the article, students will post a reflective response to the article.

Activity Two: Students will form small discussion groups to connect the “Google” article to the notions of “Freedom is Slavery” and “Ignorance is Strength” as they apply to 1984. Students should refer back to the article as they converse in their groups. After a 10-minute time period, the class will reconvene as a large group to share observations, questions, and points of clarification.

Closing Activity: Based on the group and class discussions, students will return to the blog and review their peers’ comments and respond accordingly. Students may find that their original viewpoint has changed or has been reinforced based on the conversations in class.

Homework: Students shall respond to a new blog entry to be posted by the instructor. Each blog entry will be worth a basic homework grade.

Reflection: This lesson is dependent on students being in front of their own computers in a computer lab, which is not often a reality in most schools today. Since I teach this class in a computer lab, it was easy for me to implement the lesson. The homework could be a challenge for some students who do not have access to the internet or a computer at home. Luckily, I could overcome this challenge by allowing students to compose their blog response in the beginning of class. The activity itself is engaging and allows all students (especially those shy ones) to actively participate in class conversation. One challenge is having something for those students who finish early due to speed reading or a quick response. These students tend to find their way to the Google games that are surely fun, but not the best use of instructional time. In the future, I want to use the blog more frequently to connect modern news/opinion to classical texts, including Shakespeare to show how “old” literature is relevant to modern readers.