Puppy Love

Puppy Love
My new puppy Rory and I summer 2011

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

      While doing the This I Believe project I learned alot about myself. I learned that I truly am not technologically savvy nor do I like creating movies.  However, on the positive side I really enjoyed reflecting on how much I enjoy reading and how I cam to love it.  I liked looking back on that story of how I fell in love with reading this was very rewarding for me. I was also very impressed with myself for quickly learning how to use the PhotoStory3.  I really liked this tool and it helped me create this project.  I did not find anything in the project easy aside from writing the essay itself, as that was my favorite part.  I could see me using this project in my classroom some day as I think it is more appropriate for a younger group.  The project was interesting and I learned how to use some new tools as well as put my first video on YouTube!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The overall idea of Open Educational Recourses is AWESOME. I love that it is giving FREE access to important and reliable information.  I really like that it gives teachers the opportunity to move outside their comfort zones and try something new.  OERs allow teachers who may not be so creative to do something fun in their classroom because they saw that another teacher did it in their classroom.  OERs give free access to information that will help not only the students grow but also the teachers.  The  most positive thing about OERs is that they are free and everyone has access to them.  I worry somewhat however that some teachers may take advantage of this and simply use this in their classroom daily.

                                                                      I believe that OERs have nothing but good intentions but my worry is that it may lead to laziness.  If teachers used OERs only in moderation then this tool  is wonderful. I really like that it allows teachers from all over to collaborate and share knowledge.   I will most definitely be using OERs in my classroom, weather it be to share information to other teachers or use a texbook in my classroom. Students who use OERs will benefit because they are completely free and extremely easy to access.  OERs are an awesome tool that I didn't know much about but that I now look forward to using in the future.

Below are some awesome OER websites!
  Scope them out, their FREE:)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My visual essay

I believe reading allows students to explore new worlds and discover who they are.  I believe reading forces students out of their comfort zone which in turn gives them confidence.
I was in fourth grade when I fell in love with reading.  I loved sitting down and reading a book and not being able to put it down. To me reading was better than t.v. or a movie because I could decide how the characters would look. I loved that I was able to set down the book and come back to it whenever I wanted.  I believe that a good book is like a good friend, when you’re lonely or bored it’s always there for you. Reading allowed me to escape the world and disappear and I loved every minute of it.
    Coming to love reading however, wasn’t so pleasant.   A fourth graders favorite thing to do doesn’t usually consist of anything to do with reading; I loved to cheerlead and dance, but my teacher Mrs. Bastedo was determined to change that.   Mrs. Bastedo read to us every day for a half hour most of the school year. I always looked forward to reading time because it was relaxing and nice just sitting and listening with my friends.  Not before long however Mrs. Bastedo said we would be going to the library to pick out our own DEAR time books. DEAR time we were told, was Drop Everything And Read time and we would be picking out our books the next day.  I of course was terrified, I had never read a book on my own before.  The next day came too soon, and before I knew it we were rushed single file into the library and told to pick out a book we liked.   All the other girls ran to the Judy Blume books while I stood in this unknown world to me.  I stood and wondered what I was missing out on and why the other girls liked so much what I didn’t want to even try. Before I knew it our time was up and we were told to move to the checkout line and head back to the classroom.  Of course I was bookless, so I grabbed the first thing I could find and headed back to class.
    Everyday we had a half hour to read and everyday I faked reading.  I would sit and pretend that I was reading along with my classmates and  I would turn the page every few minutes.  Apparently I was not as sneaky as I had thought and my teacher caught on quickly.  Mrs. Bastedo confronted me and asked what my book was about.  I had not developed the helpful skill set of lying to teachers at this young age so I cracked under the pressure and admitted my fake reading secret.  Mrs. Bastedo told me that she would be writing a letter  home to my parents and that I would be getting in a lot of trouble.  
    My mom grounded me from the t.v and she said that I would instead be spending my time reading the book that I had picked out.  I had picked out the first book of A  Series of Unfortunate Events and once I had given the book a chance I couldn’t put it down.   I would soon read the entire series and fall in love with reading. To this day, every book I  read I want to thank Mrs. Bastedo, because without her willingness to push me farther than I  was willing to go, I would have never found a love for reading.  I was a new confident girl after I read that first book, I was no longer wondering what I was missing out on, I was now experiencing it.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

I really found each one of these tools very interesting and fun.  Here is my top 10.

I chose these tools as my top ten because I found that I could see myself using each tool in the future.  These tools are all very different and I look forward to testing them out.

The COOLEST tool for school

I found the tool  Wiggio very interesting and useful to use inside the classroom.  I think it is extememly creative and I believe children who use this tool will find it very helpful. The tool is mainly focused on groups of students working on an assignment such as an essay or research paper together.  This tool allows each team member to create an account where you can upload documents and work together online.   The tool also allows the group to chat, assign tasks and also track recent history of work that each team member did. Wiggio also makes it simple to create to-do lists for the group to follow and manage the group with a shared calander.  I think Wiggio would be very convienient to use in large groups of people who want to collaborate together but may not be able to meet in person.  I love the app that enables you to send mass text/voice messages to your group mates and also hold conference calls. This tool stops any one group member from feeling like they have to do all the work because every member has equal access to the site. This is a very cool tool to use and I definitly see myself using it in the future.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Head Start programs compete for funding

                 A current issue in the field of education is starting with the attempt to better Head Start preschool services for poor children. Obama stated last year that programs that were not up to the new federal quality standards would soon have to compete with other potential providers for funding instead of just qualifying for it.   article on funding of Head Start programs


           Head Start's Federal Office stated that only 132 of about 1,600 local providers of Head Start programs actually met the standards.  Now in place are "school-readiness goals" that include things like progress in literacy development to the child's physical well being.  Some argue that this process will only benefit the schools in that it will clear out the low performers and overall better the quality of these Head Start preschools. Others say that this is just punishing schools who have  broken some rules instead of seeking out the actual programs that aren't performing up to par. A problem with this process is that it seems one human error can put these programs on the list of poorly performing schools.  A positive of this process is that it is simply raising the bar and demanding that these Head Start schools are nothing but productive.

          If this issue is ignored, Head Start programs that may have made very small mistakes could be punished and not receive the funding they may deserve. If a program even makes a small mistake they may not be   On the other hand, this current issue may cause these programs to better themselves.  As much tension there is about the subject people seem to agree for the most part that if your program isn't providing high quality services then it is only right to have to compete for funding.   This will most likely create some tension and instill some initiative in the teachers to better their programs so that they are able to compete with the other schools.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Tweet Tweet

     In Sedu183 we were instructed to create a twitter account.  I am the first one to bash twitter whenever the opportunity presents itself that is, until the other day when I made my own twitter.  After playing around on the site I am seeing the potential benefits of using twitter rise to the surface.  I really like the "retweet" idea and have already given that a shot.  I like that aside from facebook it is easy to find people intrested in the same field as you, like education for example.  I am already following a few educators and I am learning more and more about twitter everyday.  I am still a little unsure about the site but I intend to stick it out and make the best of it. I definitly see how using this tool in the classroom could be benificial and I hope to learn more about twitter to maybe use in my own classroom someday!