Monday, July 30, 2012

Class 7: How not to Juggle Cats. . .

If you are wondering whether or not I sympathize with the crazy amount of work you are all doing in such a short period of time, I can assure you I not only understand, but sympathize as well.  With my day job, teaching summer school, my family, and life in general, I find hours and sometimes days pass and I wonder where the time goes. . .The best we can all do is our best.  I applied for the Google Teacher Academy New York late last night. . .I had to submit a one-minute video and fill out the application. . .I think I submitted it at exactly 11:59pm (the time I had set aside to complete this was truncated by a soccer tournament and a girl scout project).  I'm sure my application and video were too rushed to get me in, but I gave it a shot. . .I definitely didn't have the time to create the type of video I wanted to. . .I even had to enlist the aid of my children to play the "cute kid" card in hopes of selling myself. . . This morning, I created a Kony-inspired image in hopes of overcoming the shaky video. . .oh well. . .maybe next year.

Tonight, you should be ready to present your NETS-S Prezi presentations to your peers. . .the Google Form assessment should be ready as well.  I will take time at the beginning of class to ensure you can get the Prezi, the assessment, and the link to the results on a blog page. You will then present to a small group of peers in the same grade range.  You should also have plenty of other assignments to keep you busy. . .I have read and commented on most of the NETS collaborative narratives.  I hope to have them all read with feedback by class time.  I can tell you that I really think everyone would benefit from looking at past student samples to serve as a guide for how to write the paragraphs. . .The only new assignment this evening will be the Cybersafety Collaborative Website. . .I will discuss this in class and show you some past student samples. . .the good news is that each of you will only be responsible for one page of the website.

Tonight's Question:  How do you feel about single-gender schools?  Are you for them, against or neutral?  Any personal experience?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Class 6: Ready to Shred?

Mammoth Mountain
Well all right. . .we are officially closer to the end of the course than the beginning.  While we (and by "we" I mean "you") still have quite a bit to complete, you are definitely on the home stretch.  You should have plenty of work to keep you busy in class for the duration of the course.  I will continue to introduce material each class, but the number is definitely diminishing.

Tonight, I have only a few new items. . .How to create your Prezi assessment on Google Forms and a discussion on how to get your work onto your blog, the Emerging Technology assignment.  From this point forward, you need to keep a small part of your consciousness thinking about your NETS-T narratives. Remind me to discuss how to decide which assignment will cover the remaining NETS-T.  I will give you feedback on your collaborative narratives by Monday.  I hope to have them completed and turned to black by Wednesday, August 1.  We will also discuss how to begin to create your Symbaloo Webmix TPE 14 portfolio and take a closer look at the Adaptive Technology assignment (Journal 8).
Don't forget to come to class early if you are going to participate in the #ntchat @ 5pm.  It would make it a lot easier to complete the PLN assignment if you can get the educational chat completed early.

Today's Question: Do you believe a high school exit exam should be required to graduate from high school?  Why or why not? Explain.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Class 5: Getting into the Swing of Things!

My oldest daughter Zoe
So is the class half-empty or half-full?  Today is officially class number five of ten. . .seems like only two weeks since our first class. . .oh wait, it has only been two weeks.  I'm sure it feels like two months for some of you. . .but I digress.  We still have quite a bit to do; however, I am confident that everyone will finish the class without too much pain.  I have graded everything that has been due so far: The About Me page, Classroom 2.0/Journal 2, and the classroom newsletter. You should either have a grade or a comment for revision.  It was pretty awesome to be able to annotate right on your newsletters in Edomodo.  I am curious to see how the annotations look from a student account.

Remember way back to last Wednesday when everyone promised to have her/his paragraph written for the NETS collaborative writing assignment by Monday's class?  I hope so.  Tonight, I want to take a closer look at the narratives and discuss how to comment and revise your work in Google Docs.  I will also revisit Symbaloo, Journal 7 & 8, how to submit the Diigo assignment, and the Excel crossword.  Lastly, I will show you how to use Prezi to make an amazing web-based, non-linear presentation!  That should be enough for one day. . .remember those headphones for music and to watch Symbaloo or Excel tutorials. . .

Please don't forget to come to the lab early if you need help. . .

Today's Question: If you were taking this class pass/fail instead of for a grade, would your effort change?  Why or why not.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Class 4: Coming up for Air

Breathe.  Okay, now back to our regularly scheduled program ;-)  Let's take a brief moment to honor what you have accomplished so far.  If you are not a self-identified tech geek, this has probably been a bit of a struggle.  If you are a self-identified tech geek, it may still have been a struggle trying to manage all that you have to do.  Life has an amazing way of getting in the way of what we intend to do.  Time is rarely our friend in shortened courses, so you definitely need to keep this in mind.  Due dates come quickly and mercilessly, but keep working and I'm sure everyone will make it just fine.  I can't stress enough that coming to the lab before class is a great way to work on assignments and/or receive help. . .bring those headphones, put on some music, and your assignments will begin to be more manageable.

Today, I want to introduce you to TaskStream, the NETS-T, and the style/format you will use to write your narratives for TPE 14.  You will be writing the first NETS narrative collaboratively with a peer in Google Docs. This way, you can receive feedback from both peers and me as you learn how to construct a quality narrative.  We will also discuss some of the assignments that are in Journals 6-10 even though Journals 1-5 are not due until next Wed.  This way, we can stay with the familiar and allow those with time to do some work this weekend. . .If time permits, I might also introduce you to a cool tool we will be using called Symbaloo. . .

Today's Question: What is something you have learned to do well without formal teaching?  How did you learn it?  (this could be a sport, hobby, musical instrument, etc. . .)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Class 3: Don't be Afraid!

Well, here we are at week two, class three.  As I seemed to have survived a harrowing encounter with zombies last Friday at Petco Park, I'm sure you will all survive the terror of ed422.  You should be starting to feel more comfortable with the nature and pace of the class.  The first assignment, About Me, has been successfully submitted (by almost everyone) and graded (for most).  You should see a point total and have received a comment from me, either thanking you for submitting or explaining what you need to do to receive credit for the assignment. . .

Tonight: I want to show everyone how to send message to individuals in Edmodo and remind everyone how to submit an assignment. We will take a look at Google Drive/GoogleDocs and perhaps even Google+ as free tools that can and will make most of your lives easier!  Tonight's assignments include social bookmarking using a tool called Diigo and creating a fun crossword puzzle using Excel.  Of course, you still have your newsletter in the works and the Journal 1-5 plus the School 2.0 Reflection Tool assignments. . . I will revisit some ways in which you can use Twitter for education and how to get a "follow me: badge on your blog. . .(I need someone to remind me to discuss educational chats).   Remember that I should always be in the lab by 5pm each day, so that would be a great time to get extra help if you need it. . .

Don't Indulge. Be Happy. Click to access article.

Today's Question: Who has been one of your favorite teachers (at any level) and why?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Class 2: Diving Right In!

I believe we had a very successful first class! I mean, only scaring one person away is a success, right? I was very impressed with everyone's ability to dive right in to the content and especially your willingness to help peers.  Collaboration will not only serve you well in this class, but a collaborative environment in the classroom is what I hope you can all achieve in your future, and present, classrooms.
On Monday, you should have created a Gmail account, your blog, and added an About Me tab as your first blog page.  You also successfully joined our Edmodo group and even added a profile picture. The intro letter/About Me should be completed by class tonight.  We will discuss peer comments and submit the assignment in Edmodo tonight.
Tonight, I will discuss in more detail how to complete the journal assignments.  We will look at L&L and the Citation Machine to ensure you know how to access the articles and how to properly cite them using APA format.  Your first two journal entries; however, do not require APA citation.  We will look at the School 2.0 Reflection Tool and how to take a screen capture on the Mac that you will incorporate into journal 2.  We will also begin, and perhaps complete, the classroom newsletter using Microsoft Word.  I asked you in class Monday to bring a colorful drawing of yourself that you can incorporate into your newsletter.  If you need to scan the image, we have plenty of scanners in the room.  I will also introduce the use of Twitter, yes Twitter, as an amazing networking tool to find resources and connect with other teachers around the globe!
Don't forget to bring food and drink as we will be in the lab for quite a while!

Day 2 Agenda

Question 2: What should every teacher know about you?

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Welcome to EDUC 422!

Welcome to another awesome experience of EDUC 422. . .Technology Tools for Education. By the end of this course you will learn a lot about how to integrate technology into your classroom, as well as a few tricks and tips for how to ramp-up your so-called digital life ;-)

I will use this blog to keep everyone updated on the weekly requirements for the course, as well as model for you how to create a blog for your future classroom!  I need you to read each entry carefully, I will be giving away $50 tonight to the person who finds the hidden gnome in this very post. . .Okay, not really, but I do need everyone to read each entry please ;-)

Click Here for a copy of tonight's agenda (I do reserve the right to change any or all ;-)

Technical Requirements. . .
First order of business:  If you do not have a Gmail Address/Account, you need to get one!  (and no, your CSUSM email does not count).  Don't worry, I have worked it out with Google to give you free email accounts!
You will be asked to join and/or participate in a number of web-based tools, software, etc. . .I recommend that you find a user name that identifies you, is appropriate for school/parents, and one that you can remember. . .
While this course has no required text, you will be required to subscribe to ISTE, the International Society for Technology in Education (see link on this blog), as well as purchase a subscription to TaskStream, an online portfolio generator.  
For TaskStream (also linked on this blog): You will need to self-enroll in the Local TPE.      

     Here are the code you will need:

                                               Local TPE: 6SG3BA

New for Summer 12: Edmodo!
For the last 8 years, I have been using the university-designated LMS (Learning Management System).  We started with WebCT/Blackboard and moved to Moodle a few years ago.  While I think both tools are fine, I have been eager to try out a LMS that my students (e.g. YOU) could use free and easily in a K-12 environment.  I have decided upon Edmodo. . .a free LMS/Social Network hybrid that I think  you will all enjoy. . .My only caveat is that you need to be patient with me as I work my way through the use of the tool for the first time as the sole LMS of my ED422 course. Go to Edmodo and sign up as a student.  I big benefit for those in elementary schools is that you do not need an email address to sign up for Edmodo. . .a huge plus!
Our group code is:

I will also ask you class questions on this blog that you will need to answer (they are weekly for the semester class). Some are related to education and most are related you your lives. . .It allows me to build community while ensuring that you are reading the weekly posts! To answer the question, you simply need to be logged in to your Gmail account, which also doubles as your Google account, and you can click on the word "comments" at the bottom of the post. . . .

This Week's Question: What is your current favorite piece of technology and why? (currently, I think I would have to say my iPad. . .I am a reformed Angry Bird and PvZ addict. . . okay, perhaps that is a bit of hyperbole ;-)