Friday, 2 December 2011

Lots of exciting stuff in the past few weeks!

What a whirlwind! I have been using borrowed iPad2's in the classroom for the past 3 weeks. What an amazing tool. Students have been able to create plays using Puppetpals, we have even uploaded them to our YouTube acct for home viewing. Students used the mic app to record themselves reading, play their recording back and set goals to improve their reading...instantly! Soooo powerful. We learned that the iPad is not the best resource for looking up information on Canadian symbols, a book was a better choice! Students picked just right reading level books for silent reading with the leveled reader app..Learning to take photos and add them to plays was a huge hit with everyone. Cooperative learning was also evident as students shared iPads and produced work together.
  Students became the teacher as they mastered skills and shared with me and other students. I spent most of time observing and watching as excited students shared their learning with me. We also had an opportunity to "teach" our grade 1 buddies the ins and out of the iPad apps.
We finished up our iPad time with a QR code scavenger hunt that had students walking all over the school to find clues! Problem solving, reading and cooperation were evident everyday!
We were very sad to see this fabulous learning tool leave our classroom, and are awaiting their return at the end of January!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Starting to get organized

I've been overwhelmed! Making all of these fabulous PD discoveries has kept me up at night....Twitter is like a drug and my Google Reader feed has me hopping all over globe finding fabulous ideas, teachers and resources. Tonight I have decided that I need to get organised. I have applied to pintrest(also highly addictive) for a board so that I can pin all these fabulous finds. I have discovered how to grab a button(who knew?) so that I can hop back to the blogs that I find interesting. They are works of on the list, how to make a fabulous blog page. For now it's off to bed. I have posted my st. videos and am taking great pride in this project. Check us out at
Good night!

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

What do you believe your responsibility is as a teacher when using content from the web in yor class

In the past I have mostly used educational sites like NLVM and other sited designed for use by students. I occasionally use clip art/pictures to add to notices etc. but I find these under images and can only use the free ones. I rarely use music but am guilty of occasionally getting songs. I more often load cd's into my music library. I believe that it is my responsibility to inform students but at the grade 3 level, parental control is more prevalent. It is not really an issue in my classroom.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

As students and parents continue to gain access to tech., how do you feel your role as a teacher is changing?What piece of your practice do you feel you may need to change/enhance?

As a teacher in a very high ESL school I believe my role is will be to inform and educate both the students in my class and their parents. In previous school years I have encouraged e-mail communication and have sent my weekly letter through e mail. For the most part this was successful however, I had approx. 20% of my students/parents without access to e mail. I found many of the students were unable to use the computer as a tool but only new how to game on the computer. Many of the parents did not read or write English so this is a major barrier. I am concerned that I will invest many hours of my time into creating a class page and it will not be utilized due to this fact. I really like/am encouraged by Jenn's kidblog as then the students would be the main participants. I am considering switching to a blog from a wikispace as it seems more user friendly. 

Monday, 22 August 2011

How will/does my fieldstudy complete my growth in all the capacities?

I have not yet used  technology  as one of my field studies. I am looking to either do my research on my newly developed class wikispace or........I have volunteered to be part of a district trial using Gizmos, a Science and Math interactive site. I think I have addressed most if not all of the capacities throughout my fieldstudies.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Curriculum Mapping

The concepts of essential questions is very interesting...I struggle with how to create these. I worked on a question for one of my units last year but then fell back to old habits and continued with what was comfortable and familiar.....

Thursday, 18 August 2011

What are some of my interests, dilemmas and questions concerning my content area and educational technology.

 I have been using interactive virtual manipulatives for the past 2 years and have noticed a different understanding on base 10 units and place value. I would like to work towards discovering new sites and helps. I am working towards building all my learning in this area and continue to be interested howt echnology can aid my students learning.

Content area reflection

Problem solving and communication have become the buzz words in Numeracy these days. Everyone is trying to have math make sense to students. Over the past several years I have worked to embrace the brain and learning research in Numeracy. Allowing students to work slowly through specific foundation skills such as patterning has enabled my students to better apply skills in other areas and explain and discuss their learning. Through Math journals students become more adept at making learning statements and setting learning goals. The Numeracy IRP's have been reduced at the lower primary level in order to facilitate a deeper understanding of concepts not a peripheral understanding. I have noticed that students are enjoying math more and having more fun since the pressure to memorize disconnect facts has been eliminated and more play based/ manipulative/creative learning has been encouraged.  I am hopeful that other teachers will embrace this model. I will be continuing to facilitate pro-d in my school and will be participating in a book study group around van de walle.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

How can I see myself best utilizing an on-line learning network?

I am always interested in improving my practice...therefore the PLN will allow me to experience information from many of the key folks in education. Following folks on twitter and the PLN will broaden my knowledge base....I have already found that it is a challenge to do all the reading and explore the hashtags but I guess a little is better than none.

August 17th 2011

In setting up a class to support digital citizenship, what guidelines/expectations would you use?

  Respect and understanding are two key components to my classroom environment. I think that these two virtues would be what I would highly value when setting up my class as a digital environment. I think the key word in citizenship, if we a re teaching students how to be positive contributors to society then I feel that this should also carry over into the digital environment. Morals, ethics and respect should guide all the decisions that are made. Students can participate in problem solving and frank discussions can occur around possible issues such as cyber bullying. At the grade 3 level many of my students are unfamiliar with overt bullying especially on the computer as their computer time and web access is controlled/monitored by their parents. When I have had discussions with students around the cyber bullying issue they are honestly outraged that "teens" would behave this way.

  Digital literacy is also a focus in my primary class. Demonstrations of sites and  research on approved sites is encouraged. I have used youtube clips to further students learning, however I have not allowed them to search individually at this age.

   Everything changes so fast.......all is so new..................

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

August 16th 2011 cont

What do kids need to know in order to be successful in the future?

Today in education this is the million dollar question....I fully believe in teaching to the whole child, and I believe that giving student well rounded education through the introduction and development of all literacies. At the primary level this looks rather different Every year I take the grade 3 students to the Aquarium for a sleep over. Some students bring cameras to record this adventure. But this year I borrowed cameras so that each child had one and I planned for them to take them and have the photos developed on their own however the plan changed and I worked with the students so that each student created their own imovie of the sleep over experience. It was a lot of work and required extra support but the pay off was huge for the kids!! Each child created a different movie with their own pics, music, transition and text, and each burned their movie by themselves!

This project allowed for many of the media literacies to be addressed.

6)distributed cognition
7)collective intelligence
9)transmedia navigation

August 16th 2011

Well today was frustrating again.......trying to make up a page using Glogster was time consuming...I always wonder where folks find the time to perfect all of this stuff. I did learn how to set up the page but not sure how I will apply this to my practice. Grade 3 doesn't seem like a fabulous fit but then again I may be able to share this idea with others. I like the look of Prezi but it all seems more suitable to high school or upper intermediate as projects are more common. Finding the article and you tube video and adding them was quite easy however removing items proved to be a challenge(never did figure it out)What I would like to discover, is how to create an interesting home page(class page) with links to educational sites and classroom updates.


Monday, 15 August 2011

portfolio reflections

August 15th 2011

  One of the main things that I have learned is to broaden my knowledge around tech., like this was one thing that I would not have done! I think a lot of my beliefs and practices have been reaffirmed. I have always tended to be a teacher leader but have been able to refine my skills and have learn to build my comfort zone around presenting to colleagues. I have learned  about backwards design and strategic teaching.
I feel that I will be continuing to develop my abilities as a caring and ethical practitioner and reflecting.It has always been a challenge for me to write my reflections but I am continually thinking about and rehashing, altering my lessons, management and relationships with my students. Always asking myself how I can better serve my students individual needs. "How can I make this work for all of students?" That is one of my major growths, moving from one size fits all to more individualized learning.
 I have always been curious about my professional development, doing my best to stay current. I have begun to follow some educators on's overwhelming!
This term I am hoping to do my field study on Gizmos!