Monday, 11 March 2013

Internet: The Future (Summative)

Here is the link to Jen Falk and I's final summative project!!!

Jen and I had a great time putting this final summative video project together. With a few giggles while rehearsing our interview lines for the video, we realized we had learned A LOT from this class.  Not only did we familiarize ourselves with many of the tools and applications that are out there today, we listened to great influential speakers, listened to our peers projects and findings and became avid bloggers and tweeters!

What does the future hold for the internet and education?

With the use of the internet as a tool, students are able to have the knowledge of the world at their fingertips.  This is beneficial for students and their minds since they can always be learning whenever and where-ever.   However, students need to realize that the internet is a tool and it should not encompass their lifestyle.  It is a tool that can be used for their education and learning but many hands on activities are also useful and beneficial for different learners.  Students need to understand that it is a resource and a tool that they may have access to but also need to be able to get away from the "business" of it all.

One great way of learning is pedagogy.  The idea of education being an art and a science and learning about teaching and learning as a whole.

Class Presentations

WOW! All of these presentations were phenomenal.  Here is a link to our presentation:

I believe internet filters are beneficial within schools BUT to a certain extent.  Filters which block pornographic images and falsified information should be blocked from schools.  Though I believe all social media applications should NOT be blocked from schools.  This may pose a problem for teachers and their students ability to get distracted, but it is important for teachers to engage the students in tasks so they do not get side tracked. I love this picture that Tyler L. made!!!

Visit Tyler's blog!

I also found the presentation on "how to site" very useful.  With the new copyrights laws that are in effect, it is important to site everything!  I also have to go back in to my power points and notes and make sure I have sited everything properly. For more information click here

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Web-based Courses

I am not a "newbie" to online courses. I have had access to Blackboard for the past year and it has been a great resource for me.  I have used blackboard with my students in finding different assignments and questions to use and also to help with content notes.

I have also used blackboard as a back-up in my classes if I was going to be away.  If I had to be away for the day, I would send my students to the computer room to work on a lesson on blackboard.  Therefore they wouldn't get behind in the work and I know blackboard is an adequate and outcome based system and I am reassured  I day would not have been "lost."

I love that Manitoba Education has given ALL teachers (even pre-service teachers) the opportunity to use this great resource.  We know that it is a "good system" as well since it was created by Manitoba Education and that the material will be outcome based.

My only concern is that this system is indirectly going to cut jobs for teachers.  Since these courses will be web-based, the students can be from all over one division and only be taught by one teacher in one school.  Whereas before, there would be a teacher in each school teaching these students the course.  I understand that it is not the "intent" of Manitoba Education to diminish jobs of teachers, but it seems that indirectly, this is what will happen.

Monday, 25 February 2013


Infographics are a great tool to use within the classroom.  They are way for visual learners to make an understanding of a complex idea and be able to incorporate that knowledge to help learn other concepts.  They help students who learn visually and for all students to develop the ability to see patterns and sequence in their learning and understanding.  One of my favorite infographics  that i have recently found is about education and statistics.

 This infographic is quite an interesting read and represents pictures and statistics of our global school population.  For example, this infographic states that there are

  • 1.4 billion students on Earth
  • 3.2 million public schools teachers (and a few more in just under two months!!:) )
This infograph also involves some post secondary education which ultimately stems back from secondary education.  

Infographics is a great visual tool to help learners fully understand the content you want to get across to them.  Relating words (stats in this example) to pictures is a great way to teach and help with comprehension.

Check out my info graphic: Facebook vs Twitter!

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Show and Tell: Poll Everywhere

One of my favourite web-based apps that I like to use in many of my classes is called "Poll Everywhere." It is a simple poll application that can be used at any time within a class and transferred to data.  It is a good activation strategy and a way to engage the students and make them feel "cool" by having them use their smart phones.

I have used this application in my Chemistry class, Biology class, Math class and have even used it when asking the students their opinion on a extra curricular event or any discussion idea that I would like their opinion.  In the past, I have polled students on:

  1. How they get to school?  walk, drive, bike, etc.  Then with this data, we would make graphs which covers a Grade 10 Essential Math outcome
  2. What would you like to do for an activity for "Activity Day"? Ski/snowboard, bowl, toboggan, etc.  Then we used this information to decide what were the top two activities we would give the students to choose from for Activity Day.
This application is easy to use, however, participants need a smartphone or access to a computer with the internet in order to take part in the poll.  Steps:
  1. Go to the website:
  2. CLICK the "Create your first poll" green button
  3. Type in the question you want to poll
  4. Hit "Create"
  5. Click "open ended" or "multiple choice" depending on how you want the participants to respond
    1. If you click multiple choice you will then need to add choices you wish the participants to choose from
    2. If you choose "open ended" your audience will respond with anything 
  6. Then a number will come up for the students to choose between your choices, or how the participants will answer.
  7. A graph will soon appear, after students have answered the question.

It is a great visual and easy tool to use within the classroom for receiving quick results and also engaging the students to use their smart phones or other devices within the classroom.  

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Clarence Fisher

Clarence Fischer joined our Internet for Educator's class this past Thursday for just a half hour, but he spoke about very interesting and enlightening issues.  He is an educator in Snow lake, MB and teaches the Grade 7 and 8 class in this community.

Clarence focused on the changing of education and more so today, it is vastly changing daily.  He focuses on two important factors of a changing educational society: engagement and passion-based learning.

He also spoke about multi-model representation and how he believes its important to create information rather than consume information.  Both are important, but in today's classrooms students need to have the ability to create their own "stuff."  Pictures, video, presentations, etc are all valuable.

Technology is important within classrooms but need implement why you are using it within the classroom. For example, wanting to purchase laptops for your classroom because its cool or interesting. But most times there needs to be more of a reason than simply being "cool" within the classroom.  These reasons can be about creation and importance of learning communities and networks.  The learning that occurs within the classroom is only as strong as the network you have in the class.  online learning communities are important for your students to have access to sharing information and learning from others that may live across the world.  Our job as teachers is to help students have a network of their own.  Students taking initiative to network outside of class and find connections in this way.  Global perspectives is the most valuable reason we use technology with kids.

Video in the Classroom

Videos and multimedia clips are an excellent way to engage students in content area courses.  Videos can be used before, prior or after lessons to clarify or bring up new concepts and ideas.  Videos also help the visual and auditory learners and can be used in all courses.  I find using videos is a great tool within the science curriculum.  For example, performing virtual labs online and also showing students how to perform certain lab techniques from experts from online youtube videos.

Here are a few videos that I found useful to use in a Grade 11 Chemistry.  Labs become quite complex in Grade 11 and 12 Chemistry and it is best that proper techniques are taken into account while performing theses labs.  So not only should the teacher demonstrate the lab and the proper techniques but it is a good idea and resource to watch clips of the lab.

The second video is about safety within the lab which is a VERY important factor before entering the lab.  Students not only need to know all of the rules and regulations of the lab, but know hazards and risks in performing each experiment.

Videos help reiterate key concepts to lessons and are a great tool and resource for teachers to use within the classroom.