keburkblog

A great WordPress.com site

Archive for April, 2013

Movies

I remember as a student when the TV rolled into the classroom everyone had smiles on their face! We viewed it as a break from learning, an easy class period, a stress reliever. However, I still to this day, more than 5 years later remember things I’ve learned through the movies in class. Movies are key, because students don’t view them as hard or stressful like class can sometimes be for them. When a teacher comes across a school and topic appropriate movie to show to their students they are holding the key to learning in their hands. Students soak up so much knowledge when watching movies. Some teachers choose to handout worksheets during movies, and some assign a movie report after the movie. I guess this is where “to each his own” comes into play. However, from first hand experience, I spent less time actually paying attention and more time just listening to the important points or answers! I say, just let the students enjoy, soak it in, and then have a class discussion afterwards. Who would have thought it could be as easy as that! Wanna learn? Watch a movie!

If you wonder where you can access a wide variety of movies, go to http://www.netflix.com. This website is wonderful, cheap, and has awesome categories to split it all up! Go check it out!

Advertisements

Technology fail.

So, this is now my fifth attempt at posting this! Our internet was down, so I attempted to use my iPhone and it froze three separate times. So I restarted it, and hoped that would fix the issue. However, nothing changed…so I was faced with a dilemma. I decided to get creative and make a video to upload and use as a video blog…ironically, that too wouldn’t work. It seemed like nothing I would try worked. So, finally our internet was fixed and now I am making a successful post!

Teaching with technology is great, and with some students it allows them to succeed when traditional teaching styles aren’t working for them. However, like I have been experiencing technology is not always reliable and can fail. This is when you as a teacher show everyone what being a teacher is all about. Teachers are always prepared and when everything else seems to fail, we always have a back up plan. I say when nothing else works, you can always go back to traditional ways. We know how to adapt and make things work for all our students, so when technology doesn’t work…the key is to never be thrown off. Preparation is key as a teacher. So more than anything, this post is to be encouraging when things don’t always go as planned. Unfortunately I do not have a website to use in this post…but I hope this gives you some inspiration to never let technology get the best of you. It’s a wonderful tool to use, but remember, it is just a tool; not the teacher!

2nd post of the week.

So, I haven’t been very quick to get my second post up this week but here it is…I was thinking about the subject “teaching with technology”. It’s the class I’m currently in, and I have to say, I have learned so much more than I expected to. I think it’s one of those things where you don’t know how much you don’t know until somebody shows you.

I know I have recommended a few ways to incorporate technology into the classroom…but it just hit me, why not this?! Every one of us has been a student at one point or another and we all have had writing assignments, article reviews, or even journal entries. Why not use this? The teacher can subscribe to all the students accounts, can read, comment, and see when it was posted. It can basically be used as a “Blackboard or D2L” website if one isn’t already being used in your school. In fact, all these posts I have been posting are directly related to education because I am using this for exactly what I am recommending. My professor is monitoring these and using them as assignments. It really is a great idea! See, even while giving us assignments he is using strategies in order to use technology in the classroom! I don’t know why this has hit me sooner than this, but this is a great way for students to open up and hopefully even share useful topics with others online rather than just social, and meaningless posts which clutter the internet!

I hope this has set a spark in any of my fellow teachers!

http://www.wordpress.com

Music

In my previous post I gave different examples of how a teacher can incorporate technology into their classroom in fairly easy ways. One form I briefly touched upon was music; I mentioned how beneficial classical music can be in a learning environment and how in foreign language classes it can be used to show the students a bit of culture.

I would like to further go into depth about using music and give you more ways to access a vast variety for your students. Most everyone already is signed up and is using http://www.pandora.com, and for those of you that don’t know what this is…it is a website and available in an app which provides listeners with free music of any and all genres. You even have the ability to type a genre or artist into the search bar and create your own station. For example, I could type in NSYNC and an NSYNC radio would pop up, and their songs as well as similar artists would be channeled into that radio station.

This is a great site to listen to music, however; there is not a very wide selection of foreign language music on there and for me specifically, this would be a problem for in my classroom. So, I came across another website that is also available as an app and it is called last.fm and can be found at http://www.last.fm. This has a vast variety of foreign music and offers all that Pandora does. I love last.fm and what it has to to offer. I urge you to get on, sign up, and check it out! Especially if you are looking for some current foreign music to let your students listen to, or even just for yourself!

Teaching with technology

When you think of teaching with technology, what forms of it do you think of? The most common answers would probably be a computer, projector, and maybe a smart board. Those are all good sources, and are fine to plan a lesson around, however, our daily lives are completely surrounded with technology. Why not bring those into the classroom? Why not use them for your benefit? Children are always excited when they get to learn in different and unique ways. This blog is mainly just to give you ideas of how to incorporate technology in appropriate ways into your classroom.

First off, taking notes is always very time consuming…I would encourage the students to have access to a computer and type out the notes. In this day and time period, the younger generations are incredibly fast with a keyboard. Would this not be more time efficient and possible leave time for review of the notes rather than up to the bell writing?

It is widely known that music can clear a mind and increase attentiveness, especially classical, why not set up speakers and let the students listen to classical music in the background during free study, silent reading, or note taking, or even while they are taking a test. The benefits of this are shown throughout many studies. If you aren’t convinced, go Google it, the results are everywhere. Especially if you are a foreign language teacher like myself, this is a great way to incorporate culture without even setting aside extra time.

The third form of technology that I would like it talk about in this post is online surveys and quizzes, there are some websites that actually allow you the teacher to create a quiz with different forms of answers like (multiple choice, fill in the blank, or T/F) then the students use their cell phones to answer, it is sent to the website in real time and you can see the answers filter into the website. It is the quickest way a teacher could ever grade 30 quizzes in a matter of seconds and then put those grades into their grade book instantly. I think this could be a very powerful tool. 

In fact; go to http://www.polleverywhere.com to see what I’m talking about!

Thanks, hope this gives you some inspiration!

Pinterest!

Pinterest is amazing! I could say just that and end this post, but just in case you aren’t familiar with it I’ll fill you in on this website. First off, it can be used for social, educational, and business reasons. The list goes on with possibilities that Pinterest has to offer.

Here’s what you do:

Go to http://www.pinterest.com Then, explore!
There are endless possibilities of subjects you can search, then pictures and descriptions will come up to your search. Look through these. They have some really awesome and creative ideas no matter what you search! Then, when you see something you like. Pin it! Pinning something is just like saving it for yourself to look at later. You pin things to “Boards”, and boards are just a place to keep all of your findings organized. For example, you can create a board and name it “teacher stuff” or “my style” and you can pin all your teaching ideas, or strategies in that board. For the “my style” board you can post outfits that you like. Pinterest is very versatile and can be used for any purpose you can think of! Those are just two examples.

You also can look through the categories already set up for you. These categories include things like; Animals, Celebrities, Education, Food & Drink, History and so many more! I hope this isn’t too confusing, but Pinterest is so amazing and has so much to offer that it makes it hard to explain in a simple way.

Here: I’ll let you look through mine, but don’t forget to sign up and make your own account. It’s easy and free!

http://pinterest.com/katieburk21/

My First Post

SkyDrive: This is a tool we were taught about when in need of backing up our files to a secure location online. It was described to us as a virtual thumb-drive. It can be accessed on any computer and all your files will be right there at your hands to access, customize, read, etc. SkyDrive is a useful tool, and I would recommend looking it up if you don’t already know about this.

Twitter: This is a social networking tool that can be both very useful, and very social. This is a website that you can write “mini” posts  of 140 characters or less. You also have the ability to “follow” others profiles which allows you access to anything they post. If you choose to follow educational figures then you can benefit from this website and stay up to date on educational issues. On the other hand, if you choose to follow someone like Snooki, then you will have access to anything BUT education. This is why, under correct use Twitter can be very useful.

Google Drive: Google Drive is much like SkyDrive which I explained earlier, except, Google Drive happens to be my preferred online storage center. I like the Google Drive best because everything else that Google has to offer. I use Google all the time so it was just easier for me to have everything all in the same place.

Prezi: Prezi is comparable to PowerPoint, only Prezi is much more in depth, and customizable. It is essentially a power point that is more fun, and less boring. Also, with a valid student email address Prezi will authorize you a higher version than what others are able to use for free. I highly recommend teachers to transform their styles and choose Prezi next time they need to make a PowerPoint.

Smart Notebook: This is an incredibly useful tool that all educators should use to incorporate student participation in their daily lessons. Smart Notebook allows the teacher to create interactive and fun lessons that the students can easily use and learn from. I myself made a lesson, and taught that lesson to a classroom of 4th graders. It went very well, and the students genuinely had fun with this lesson because they were a part of the learning.

iPad App Reviews: During this module we were given access to an iPad, and were allowed to play and explore with the different apps the iPad had to offer. I had a lot of fun using an iPad and finding all sorts of French Language apps. There were numerous useful and educational apps that I found and downloaded to my own iPhone and plan on using.