Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Reflection 6

In the article, PE: Bring Your Sneakers, Rackets, and iPad? Kevin Felker talks about how technology is even coming into Physical Education classrooms. Technology can be often seen as physical activity’s worst nightmare because many fear that all this technology is taking away from children being active, but it actually has the opportunity to teach students about health as well as get them to be more physically fit.
The article uses Felker’s wife as an example. She is a PE teacher who is starting to incorporate iPads into her own classes. Since the iPad is portable, students are able to take it anywhere and are able to access their apps, even if it is outside. This allows for convenience that they are able to take it outside and work on it while doing their physical activity. The article also gives examples of what kind of apps there are that can be seen as useful for PE classes. Some of these apps work great for the health portion of the class, like calorie counters, fast food nutritional information, and health news articles. The other apps work for the physical activity aspect of PE class, such as a BMI counter, yoga poses, fitness trackers, and other ideas for activities. This will get the students engaged and excited about fitness without having to spend all of their time in a classroom or out on the field listening to a lecture. I really hope that more schools get on board with this idea because I see it being a very useful tool in PE classes.

This article works with ISTE NETS performance indicators with students because it allows for creativity and innovation. By using these apps, they will be able to complete projects in their PE class by using the apps and information that those apps give them to create their own personalized PE class.     

Felker, K. (2011, May). Pe: Bring your sneakers, rackets, and ipads?. Learning and Leading with Technology,38(7), 32-33.

Reflection 5

From watching the video as well as reading the article “Building an Assistive Technology Toolkit”, I was able to get insight on how to better help students and work with their different types of learning strategies. Like the video said, all students learn differently and each learning strategy is unique to that student. It is important to recognize those strategies by getting them motivated and excited to learn. As a teacher, we can try and aid as many learning strategies as possible through technology. The article gives a list of free programs and ideas that will channel students’ learning strategies and have them work where they have their strengths. Something as simple as online books can be something to help out a student. With ebooks, you are able to annotate them, look up words easily, and even for students who have trouble seeing, you can create larger fonts for them to read better.
I also liked the idea of mind mapping. Mind maps are good in the sense that it can organize a student. When writing a paper or starting a project, students often become overwhelmed with information and do not know what to put down or where to start. Mind maps give students the ability to work with their own thoughts and organize them in the best way they see fit. What is nice about doing it on the computer is that they are so easy to change. The student can move things around, add or take away things without having to start over. This is perfect for visual learners because they can see how their work is to be organized.
This article also gives tips on how to work with your IT department to get these tools as well as make the programs more efficient when installing or updating. I found this article to be very helpful and I plan on using these ideas when I become a teacher.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

PLN Network Assignment

PLN Network Assignment
Visit The Educator's PLN

1.     The RSS feeds I subscribe to Fox News, CNN News, and Discovery News. CNN and Fox give me the latest national news and current events on world issues. With Discovery, I am able to see interesting articles regarding science, history, and technology. I am able to check them all in one location and if an article interests me, I am able to click the link and go directly to that article. I have found RSS feeds to be incredibly convenient.
2.     I had not had a Twitter before signing up for this class. It was easy to navigate and I quickly caught on to how to post tweets and how to follow and retweet others. I have mostly been following those in the history community, such as history teachers and The History Channel, and I am able to learn different things about history and communicate with others who share similar interests with me. I am also able to follow friends and other accounts that have similar interests. The hashtags I usually follow are #education and #history. I have only tweeted once and it was retweeted by a few friends.
3.     The types of articles I have put on my Diigo is technology in the the classom related articles. I will definitely use this program more because it is helpful for research programs and being organized in when I am looking at articles. I learned how to annotate and make notes on articles and how to keep citations organized.
4.     I looked at a discussion group regarding technology in the classroom. The blog wanted to share better ideas on how to gain more knowledge on the upcoming technology that is coming out. Mostly to keep up with her students and make education engaging. I learned that many teachers are seeking out information on how to make their classrooms more tech-savvy. A lot of them bring up the iPad or projects like Prezi. It will be interesting to see how the classroom evolves as they incorporate more technology in the classroom.
5.      My overall experience with the PLN Network was positive. I learned a lot about RSS feeds and how to easily access sites and blogs. I think that also becoming familiar with social networking sites such as twitter will allow me to be able to create a more technologically-savvy classroom where students will be able to have many different methods of learning.