Sunday, September 1, 2013

Blog Assignment 2

Professor Dancealot video reflection:
By Group post
In the video Mr. Dancealot, we witnessed how a dance class should NOT be taught. Professor Dancealot is a satire of classroom where strictly teaching the subject does not mean actually teaching the subject. To start with, the professor read directly off the power point that told about each dance step by step, but never once looked at the students. He then proceeded to show the students moves and hand placements. When a student stood up to see what his professor was demonstrating, the professor yelled for him to sit down. The entire semester spiraled downward as Mr. Dancealot continued to confused the students by: playing both the male and female role, never providing the opportunity for the students to get out of their seats and actually practice the dance, and not allowing the students to actually see his “dance moves” because he was constantly behind the desk.

To top off this ridiculous class, the final took place in a ballroom where the students had to pair up and dance. When two of the students paired up, they talked about how they tried to practice at home, but lacked the proper room. When the male asked what dance they were performing, both members stopped to check their notes instead of continuing to dance. This satire explains why reading about certain topics is not enough to actually learn the topic. It is nearly impossible to learn dance moves by just listening, and not practicing. This video shows that nothing can be learned by just listening and watching, you have to “make a move” and practice what is being taught. The “Dali” group agrees that this professor should change his name to DanceaNOT!

Teaching in the 21st Century:
By Tim Johnson

Kevin Roberts video “Teaching in the 21st Century” is trying to break away from the traditional, “pens and papers” way of teaching into a modern technology friendly format. In the video, he ask how a teacher can teach a student anything if that student could easily find the information that the student wanted simply by looking it up. He wants to move the focus onto teaching students how to use technology to get the information they need instead of a teacher teaching one thing, another teacher teaching something else, and the third teacher teaching the last thing. Roberts suggest we teach children to use the World Wide Web to its full potential by seeking out social media, collaborated websites, and search engines to build our knowledge on things.
Foremost, I agree with Roberts video for the most part. I especially believe in the engagement versus entertainment. I think we should engage students more, but is technology the true wave of the futures; yes in the long run or even sooner than I suspect, but as of now, no. Technology is progressing too quickly in my opinion which I don’t blame them, but how are we suppose to teach students when back when we were kids, we weren’t even allow flip phones till we were teenagers, or at least that was my case. I think we should learn how to teach students to gather information, sift through websites for correct and positive information, but I still feel we need lecture base, pens and paper type classrooms. I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t take notes, but I know the process of doing so and how it beneficial. What I don’t like is taking a web course, having no idea what I doing, trying to contact my professor, and waiting for a reply. I understand a teacher has a hundred students to teach, why should I get a respond the second I ask a question? I don’t, but I would like the availability to meet him face to face which could be impossible if he’s ten states way. The video asked, “Where are they learning Responsibility, Reliability, Integrity? Where are they learning this? Friends, strangers, or themselves?” The internet is a wandering invention bringing us so much closer, but yet farther apart. My mother told me, “We were doom as the human race when everyone is talking to each other with their laptops all in the same room,” which we did. I think we should learn what Roberts has to say and start implying it, but let’s not drop the ball on pen and paper just quite yet.

The Networked Student: Why does the networked student even need a teacher?:
By Meagan Freeman

After watching “The Networked Student” by Wendy Drexler, I heard about connectivism for the first time. Connectivism seems like it could be very overwhelming, but beneficial. It is great to connect with other people to learn. I believe a main component of learning is to have as many connections as possible.  This is exactly what Connectivism learning does.
By using connectivism, you have the access to connect with people and professors around the world! Many students, including me, did not even know that was possible. Through connectivism, teaching and learning have no limits! Students should know how to connect with others through various sources, instead of looking at a powerpoint and reading your textbook. It gives people the opportunity to teach new things, and get the word out there. Connectivism opens many doors to learning, and gives so much opportunity!
I can see how connectivism needs a teacher, but I also see how the teacher is not primarily useful. Without a teacher, the knowledge connecting all over the world would not ever be available. The teacher is there to guide you. He or she is the one explaining what connectivism is, how it works, and what opportunities are available. Conversely, It seems as if any teacher could teach any subject, without much knowledge of it when using connectivism. The teacher does have to know how to connect students to resources, but not how to actually teach the course.

Harness Your Students’ Digital Smarts:
By Linda Check
This week I watched the movie Harness Your Students’ Digital Smarts on Edutopia, and I not only learned a lot about new advancements in digital technology, but also learned about the amazing woman who made it all possible. Vicki Davis is a blogger, IT director, but first, and foremost, a teacher in rural South Georgia. Davis said, “If you only have paper and pencil, then only certain types of children will succeed.” This statement is what made me like Mrs. Davis and her ideas, but if was the fact that she lets her students teach the class and the fact that she makes the students work for the information that made me LOVE her ideas. Her genius, however, does not stop in the walls of the classroom.

Davis, along with the help of Julie Lindsay, founded the global collaborative project- “Digi Teen,” where students all around the world study digital citizenship by reading, writing, and posting work on two digital portals. The first portal is Teen-Wiki, which the students post work on assigned topics. The second portal is Digi Teen Social Network, where students and teachers from around the world can connect, blog, and share ideas.

Davis and Lindsay also founded “Flat Classroom Project.” This allows students to study trends in information technology by collaboratively writing reports with other people and creating videos where they have to outsource part of it to other students. This way the students are able to experience the trends and learn about the trends with students all over the world. Overall, the part that amazes me the most is how hands on the students are, and they not only learn the material, but also teach other students the ins and outs of computing technology.

I also explored Edutopia further, and found some great materials that I could use in my future classroom. One thing I found was the large number of free classroom guides and educational downloads, that ranged from “A Parent's Guide to 21st-Century Learning” to “How to Thank a Teacher” to even “Top Ten Tips for Assessing Project-Based Learning.” Some other materials I found, that I could use in my adventure to becoming a special education teacher, were the massive number of blogs that Edutopia has in its library. I looked through several blog posts giving advice to special education teachers on what works and what does not work in the classroom. Overall, Edutopia is a wonderful resource that all teachers and parents should know about!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Blog Post assignment 1

What do I want my students to know?

In general, of course, would be the subject I'm teaching either be history or sociology. Something they should truly know is not to read from the textbook and regurgitate what it says, that's simple and easily forgotten, but learn why things are they way they are. Krissy Venosdale's dream school, little unrealistic in my opinion, has a key component that I admire; creativity. Expanding both sides of the brain helps a lot in my opinion especially in long, sometimes boring martial like history. By doing so, Students will want to engage the topic, form opinions, and begin learning.

What do I want my students to be able to do?

I've always explain that I want my students to learn, engage, and debate the topic in hand, but something they really should do is want their opinions, their thoughts, and their voice means something even out of the classroom. Sugata Mitra ran an experiment that I thought was intriguing; He gave people, who didn't have access to learning or technology, a computer and they learned by themselves. He goes through this experiment over and over discovering people will learn, not only learn, but will teach others. That's what I would love happen. I want my students able to learn the subject so well that when they're talking about outside of school, a student come up asking what are they talking about, they'll smile and teach that student. Like a good deed, it would spread from student teaching a classmate who teaches his friend. As unrealistic as it is, I wouldn't be upset if I lost my job, because the entire school learned all of my course material, and couldn't teach anyone.

What will be my primary way to teaching my students what I want them to be able to do?

Thinking of how I am and my previous teachers as examples, I would naturally go with" read from the textbook and discuss this." Of course, I already see the flaws in this, like students simply not reading the textbook or being held down with the details. If I want to teach my students to teach others, I, who hopefully knows everything about the subject at hand, will be teaching to people who know a little on the subject that will teach people who know nothing. I should keep it simple and easy to remember, so instead of reading the textbook word for word, have the theme for the lesson's text and discuss that. A theme makes it simpler to remember, since it's one thing, it is not deluded with useless facts and tidbits knowledge. Discussions are clear and focused by eliminating side material. Of course, The topics would stack onto each other as the lessons passed, which will help build stronger and better discussions.

What tools will be I used in the classroom?

"I don't have to write that down. I'll remember it." That is a quote that I regret every time I say it. No one ever remembers what they wanted to write down. How would I change that though? I could allow cellphones, lab tops, Ipods, or any other technology usually banned from classrooms. Of course, there's usually a good reason to do so, but why hinder those who want to learn, because someone wanted to text their friend in class. As for tools in teaching, Illustration are usually a good way to remember things; using both sides of the brain. I no artistic, so anything I drew would being a riot of laughs, but it keeps people engaged and paying attention. To further explain my opinion on Krissy's dream, her school is very artistry with colors, visions, and canvas of art. I admire that, but if remembering high school right, most high schools lose that sense of enjoyment and becomes a bothersome than a wonder. But Krissy brought up a good point, bring the subject to life instead of looking at it in a book; Marine Biology learn about fish, why not have a fish tank? If I were to go into history, I wouldn't read the amazing story of the civil war, I allow my students to reenacted it.

What role will the students play in my classroom?

Of course, I have been saying that I would love my students to play the role of teacher outside of classroom, but of course, they can't teach me the subject I already know in the classroom. They have to learn what and how to teach, but do they have to learn from just me? Sugata mention the "Grandmother effect" which makes sense when I thought about it. Playing it dumb, asking the obvious questions, and complementing others for information we may or may not know is definitely a way to approach things. we all learned "My Very Earthy Mother Served Us Nine Pizzas," when we were learning the solar systems, but maybe someone learned a different way. While they can't teach me what I already know, they could teach me a new way to approach it. Students will always find a way to learn something, so why not let them express that as see if chances someone's ear.

Pratice Post

I was born in Biloxi, Mississippi. I lived there till second grade and moved to Ocean Springs, Mississippi where I spent the rest of my schooling till college. I met a friend in high school who wanted to attend University of South Alabama. We moved to Chunchula, Alabama to attend college. I have two sisters and a brother. I'm the oldest at 22. My sister is attending Perk community college at the age of 19. My brother is a junior in high school at 17. Finally, my baby sister is a sophomore at 15. Respect to my mother, She is forever 30 and works as secretary for a construction business.

I've always admired my high school teachers, not for their teaching techniques, for their ability to communicate with their students. I always felt like I could do the same and would enjoy doing so. Keep students in class by engaging with them and making them want to learn like my teachers did to me. Through my high school years, No real subject approached me to inspire me to pass on its teaching, but psychology was always interesting to me.  When I got into college, I found my calling, so happening to match what I was going for, and it was Sociology.

To ask me what my passion is, I would be definity would be helping people. I love to help as much as possible and would try to help as much as possible. As far as improving things, I’m the kind of guy that will improve when I improve. I don’t rush anything.