Category Archives: Edtech541

Edtech 541 Reflection

What have I learned?

Through this course I have been challenged to take my subject to a different level.  What I mean by this is integrating technology has challenged me to think more outside the box with my normal curriculum.   I have really enjoyed creating all of the different projects and learning about the different resources and strategies that are available.  I was particularly challenged by the process of establishing the relative advantage.  This is something I had not considered in my thought process previously in regards to integrating technology into my classroom.  I found this very helpful  in laying out the purposes and uses of tech within my classroom.

AECT Standards

1.1 Design- This course has a very distinct design feature to it. THough we were not creating a complete course, as in the Instructional Design class, we were able design different expereinces that allow students to learn. The relative advantage project allowed us to consider what technology to use, how it will be used and going into details of the process. In all of the projects we were not only tasked to design the process but implement it as well as use the materials.

2.3 Computer-Based Technologies:  My final project was a website with the majority of my projects using computer based technologies to enhance learning

2.4 Integrated Technologies:  Throughout the semester different online technologies (from prezi, google docs, videos, games, etc.) were used to created different learning experiences within the classroom.

How have I Grown Professionally?

I find that with each course that I take within the EdTech program at BSU I become a more confident teacher.  Professionally I want to enter the EdTech field after this but in the mean time I am able to integrate the new information and ideas that I learn into my classroom.  This course has given me some great starting points of different technologies that I want to try to integrate into my classroom this coming year.  The final project has given me a great foundation as well.  Overall, professionally, I feel more confident in technology integration and look forward to practicing what I have learned in the upcoming school year.

How has my teaching practice been impacted by what I have learned or accomplished in this course?

As I went through this course I tried to consider how each project would be altered to fit into different subject classes. The overall set up of our course also brought some inspiration for my classroom.  I have started to consider the portfolio based learning using a website or wiki.  I really like how the final project came together.  I also really enjoyed the fact that each piece was a building block to the final project.  I hope to find ways to implement this into my classroom soon.

How theory guided development of the projects and assignments you created?

Within each module the theory that was presented from the text and other articles allowed me to have a greater understanding of the task at hand.  In the past I would consider using an online tool and figure out how to fit it in.  From the reading I was able to gain guidance and example on how to integrate and practice the different content we were studying. Roblyer and Doering (2012) wrote in their text, ” Modern tools and techniques are simply the latest developments in a field that some believe is as old as education itself” (p. 4).  This text challenged me to think outside the typical “template” of teaching and think of new ways to facilitate learning to my students.

Part Two: Assessment

As I read back over my blog as well as review the rubric I would give myself a score of an A.  I believe that my blogs were rich in content and provided real life situations that related to the topics at hand.  I was able to use the course text to enhance my blogging as well.  All of my posts were posted in a timely manner besides the first post, which was off because of a time difference mistake (thank you Hong Kong!).  I feel I was able to provide strong, encouraging feedback to my peers, offering them both praise as well as questions that might help in their though process.  Overall I believe I met every requirement of this project.  It was a great experience and I am thankful for the opportunity to have been a part of this course!

Cheers!

Works Cited

Roblyer, M.D. & Doering, A. H. (2012). Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching. Boston: Pearson.

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Obstacles and Suggested Solutions for Integrating Technology Into the Content Area

Throughout this course, it has been overwhelmingly evident that technology integration is key to the future of education.  No longer are we in a time that was similar to our experience in middle or high school, we are now in a time where technology is affecting our learning.

This is what I love about the EdTech field.  We are continually on the cutting edge of new learning technologies that not only can enhance our own learning, but the learning of our children (and students if you are in a classroom) as well.

Yet change makes people queasy.  Change brings on defensiveness, pride and opposition and yet within the realm of education, technology integration is going to be an essential change for now and into the future.  The integration of technology into the classroom will bring various opposition depending on subject area.

For example, some obstacles that will come up while trying to integrate technology into a social studies curriculum are cost, standards, and the overwhelmingly abundant amount of information on the internet.  When thinking specifically of social studies Roblyer and Doering (2012) state, “As an area that focuses on the interconnections of people and the earth, social studies education has been affected by the impact of technology perhaps more than any other content area”(p. 334).  Social studies covers such a broad area of content that integrating technology can be difficult.  In regards to standards and the difficulties that might come up, the incredible amount of standards to be addressed can be overwhelming for the instructional designer or teacher.  This is not necessarily a specific technology integration issue, but one that has been approached before the integration of technology.  The difficulty can come into how to provide good social studies experiences for learners. For some, the switch from a purely text-book based curriculum to a more experiential and project based activities.  Technology could be integrated into social studies by using different strategies such as (Roblyer and Doering 2012): Virtual field trips, geocaching with gps devices, history immersion experiences, stock market simulations, electronic storytelling, and more (p. 348).

Another obstacle that can arise integrating technology into the classroom is the training in the specific technology that a teacher has or receives.  Currently our school (International Christian School Hong Kong) we are moving into a 1:1 program where students will have MacBook Pro laptop computers.  One difficulty that we are seeing is that teacher experience and training is taking longer than expected.  The level of understanding the MBP is diverse across the three grade levels.  This has caused a slowing in the integration process.  Because the teachers are struggling with simple tasks in using the computers, there is not ample time to train them in how they could integrate this technology into their curriculum.  The school is understaffed in this area and it will be interesting to see how the transition starts.  Understandably this transition will take some time for the teachers to bring into their classes. Hopefully as they become more familiar with the tools available, they will be able to enhance their learning experiences using technology.

Works Cited

Roblyer, M., & Doering, A. H. (2012). Integrating educational technology into teaching (6a ed.). Harlow, UK: Pearson.

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Social Networks and Walled Gardens

Voicethread on Social Networks and Walled Gardens

Click to link to see the presentation!

http://voicethread.com/share/5913653/

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Safety on the Internet

(image source)

Having the opportunity to be a part of the EdTech department has been a real blessing.  At the same time, I also get to be a part of a school that is making a transition into a 1:1 model using MacBook Pro computers.  The real opportunity here is being able to be a part of two programs that are on the forefront of education and technology.

That being said, priority number 1 as a teacher with students who will be linked to the web more often than not is to help them understand what it means to be safe online as well as what it means to be a good digital citizen.

As a teacher there are 4 (and probably more if I really think about it) guidlines that I want to give my students in regards to internet safety and digital citizenship as they embark on this new educational journey.

Guideline #1:  Privacy is not always private…be aware of what you share!

There is a glaring misconception within our middle school population (and probably most middle school populations) that when you post something on the internet it is only going to go to the people that know you.  The alternative is simple- Be smart with what and to whom you share information.

1.  Do not accept friend requests or email messages from people that you don’t know or

haven’t talked to in person.

2.  Never, EVER, share your password to any of your online accounts. (Facebook, email, etc.)

3.  Set your privacy settings to a strict level to protect your information from strangers on the

internet.

For more information on Online Privacy go here:  http://www.edudemic.com/online-privacy-guide/

Guidline #2:  “Every action has an equal and opposite reaction” Newton’s 3rd Law

Consider your actions online something of a chain.  This chain is linked to you the moment that you start joining networks or emails online.  Every action that you take online from searches, or games, to harmful posts and pictures making fun of someone else, will stick with you forever.  It is very possible that inappropriate content that you post to the internet could come back to affect your future.  College administrators and future employers might stumble across comments or pictures that you posted when you were in high school.  They might find this information offensive and not allow you into their institution or the job that you always wanted.  Beware that all information online is open to everyone and sometimes it can affect your future greatly.

For more information on your digital footprint go here: http://www.edudemic.com/your-digital-footprint/

Guideline #3:  Stand Up for what is right!

Think about what you are using these computers for.  There are strict guidelines in each of your classes about which websites you should be using.  If you see someone on an inappropriate website or postin inappropriate material, report it.  This includes bullying other students!  If everyone works to clean up the web and hold each other accountable, there is no way we will be overcome with the negative information that can be on the web.

Here is more information on cyber-bullying and it’s effects: http://www.edudemic.com/cyberbullying/

Guideline #4:  You are not alone-Communicate with your teacher

Sometimes being online can feel individual.  There are feelings that you are the only one struggling with certain websites, that you are the only one who is being bullied, or the only one who doesn’t know how to use different tools required for our class.  Please come and talk to the teacher about what is going on.  The first goal for all of your teachers is that you are safe and understand the information that we are sharing with you.

For more information about communicating with your teacher go here:

http://www.edudemic.com/7-survival-skills-modern-teachers-students/

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Acceptable Use Policy

foxtrot-copying

This week we are covering Acceptable Use Policy within the realm of education.  An Acceptable Use Policy is an agreement that lays out the terms for using technology within school and on a greater scale within the school district. This is a document that allows for the school to hold parents, students and teachers accountable for their technology use on school properties and also gives guidance as to the expectations and regulations on technology within the school.

Within an Acceptable Use Policy within schools there are specific information that should always be covered, such as:

  • Code of conduct or Digitial Citizenship rights and expecations of students, teachers and parents on their uses of technology within the school.
  • Consequences of misusing technology
  • The importance of safety while using technology.  All parties must be aware that if the tool is used in the wrong way, dangerous things could happen.
  • Responsibilities of the students in regards to their use and care of technology as well as guidelines to student’s use of technology in and out of the classroom
  • A clear understanding of any legal responsibilities or ramifications related to the use of technology as a teacher, student and as a parent

The Acceptable Use Policy is so important to protect all parties of the institue from any inappropriate usage of technology, as well as holds people accountable to what they are using the technology for.

Example School Acceptable Use Policies

Wilmington Christian School: AUP

Shoals Christian School : Technology AUP

Bakersfield Christian High School: AUP

Oklahoma Christian University: AUP

References:

K-12 School Computer Networking/Chapter 1. (n.d.). – Wikibooks, open books for an open world. Retrieved June 18, 2014, from http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/K-12_School_Computer_Networking/Chapter_1

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Relative Advantage Chart

When considering the integration of technology into the classroom there is one goal that stands above the rest.  Make our students better learners.  In order to do this, our students must have an understanding of technological skills before they can fully utilize the use of the technology in the classroom.

This chart below is created for my 8th grade New Testament students.  The purpose of the chart is to build a foundation of skills that will give them to the tools to succeed in using their 1:1 laptop in my class.  My classroom is project based, using a website portfolio to track and store all student work from the year.

Please see the link to observe my chart.

Relative Advantage Chart

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EdTech Vision Statement

I never thought i was going to be a teacher.  My mother has been a teacher since I can remember and I never thought i would be involved in education let alone be striving to better myself as an educator.  Since becoming a teacher I have seen how students are not reaching their full potential through traditional means within a classroom such as notes and powerpoint presentations.  The more I learn about being a teacher the more I am understanding that to be a teacher is not to have all of the answers, but rather to ask the right questions.

Currently, I am working in a school that is transitioning into a 1:1 laptop program.  This is an exciting time for our school, but for some teachers a stressful transition.  Our goal with the 1:1 program is not to give each of our students an expensive paper and pencil, but rather to become producers within their own learning.  No longer is the goal of our classes for students to consume knowledge, but rather for students to build the understanding and problem solving abilities to guide their own learning.

When I think about my role within education, I consider myself someone who is willing to step away from the traditional in order to see what potentials could be unlocked from the nontraditional.  I see Educational Technology as a nontraditional path that is bringing innovation to classroom.  Within the next 5 years I want to be fully involved in  the development and training of educators in the uses of different technologies.  The US Department of Education website says, “Online learning opportunities and the use of open educational resources and other technologies can increase educational productivity by accelerating the rate of learning; reducing costs associated with instructional materials or program delivery; and better utilizing teacher time”. I see myself involved in the growth and training of teachers as they begin to integrate technologies into their classrooms.  I want to be training students in new and creative ways of showcasing and sharing what they have learned.  Most of all I want to build up those around me who are in education so that they in turn can impact others.

Works Cited

Use of Technology in Teaching and Learning. (n.d.). U.S. Department of Education. Retrieved June 14, 2014, from http://www.ed.gov/oii-news/use-technology-teaching-and-learning

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