Saturday, September 5, 2015

Project Improvements

In week 2, I created a Wiki for one of my classes. At that time, I did not know how I would utilize the wiki. I knew students would create a digital portfolio of their work but I had not designed any assignments. At this time, I am proud to say that I have learned how to successfully implement the class wiki to become a paperless class. 

I decided to create a lesson plan Copyrighting (go to lesson 2). Parts of my lesson plan were provided by Common Sense Media. In particular, I used Copyrights and Wrongs from Unit 1 on the Common Sense Media website and the video, Fair(y) Use talecreated by Eric Faden, recommended by Jacqui Murray. In my lesson plan, you will see vocabulary words and a link to the definitions. I want to ensure that all my students know or will have knowledge of the vocabulary. A brief class discussion began using the warm-up questions. Then, the video was showed to my students. Students found the video challenging to follow. After discussing the video, students then worked in pairs to complete an assignment called "Mad Men." (Assignment can be found in the Common Sense Media website above). In this assignment, students are challenged to determine the best picture for an advertising campaign. Students enjoyed this assignment and most realized that the best picture is the one in which you own. 

The next day I challenged them to find a better video that explains copyright laws. They had to post a video in their wiki page and explain why they choose it. In addition, they also had to post a response to
" Do you think it is important to give credit and get permission, if needed, when you use someone else's creative work? Why or why not? Cite evidence from the video and or class discussion."

You may select individual student pages to view the video they chose to explain copyright laws and a response to the question above. Overall, I was very pleased with the results. My students were engaged and smiling. They enjoyed the assignment. 

On another note, I introduced Twitter this week. I had them tweet about "What digital citizenship means to them."  I was delighted with their responses. The next day I observed that some students were going to our Twitter page. One student asked if he could tweet to the class something that was appropriate but not related to class. I was very happy that he asked. Anyways, Twitter seems to be a hit with my students and I will continue to use it. Thank you, Jacqui!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Digital Citizenship & Common Sense Education

Today, I spent many hours learning about Digital Citizenship using the website Common Sense Education.  I was blown away by the number of lesson plans for all grade levels including high school.  In order to review the lesson plans and resources for the lesson plans, I had to subscribe to the website.  To me, this was not a problem but I understand that some people do not like to subscribe to websites.  Its just as easy to unsubscribe when needed.  Anyways...there are four units in the high school curriculum on Digital Citizenship.  Each unit contains 5 lesson plans.  For my first time, I will incorporate the first unit into my Computer Application class.

Digital Citizenship

By high school, students already know about digital citizenship.  They know about cyberbullying, keyboarding, staying on the appropriate webpage, etc.  They do not cite images.  When using an image for educational purposes, it is not necessary to cite the source, I think.  Please let me know if I am incorrect.  Since most of what we as educators do is for educational purposes, we forget that copying an image without proper citation is plagiarism.  How do we cite images correctly?  What images do not need to be cited?  When copying words for educational purposes, we still recognize the person who said/wrote the words.  Why is it not the same for images?  This is an unclear area for me and I would like clarification.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Common Core & Tech Activity

For my project, I chose to use Edmodo.   Edmodo is a type of LMS in which students and teachers can collaborate, stay organized, and access assignments and grades. This LMS is similar to Google Classroom except it does offer practice multiple choice questions to Common Core standards.   In Edmodo, there is an option to create Snapshots.  Once a new Snapshot is created, I can create multiple choice assessment based on Common Core Standards for the appropriate grade level.    For example, my students will learn about functions.  This is an 11th grade domain in Common Core.  There are several standards within the domain.  I selected the first standard and my students will take a  multiple choice assessment based upon this standard.  There are  4 questions.  The questions were not created by Smarter Balance.  Hence, the questions are an interpretation of the standards.  I like my students to have questions worded in different ways to increase their comfort level of the material and to exercise their minds.   Throughout the year, my students will be asked to use excel and their graphing calculator.  The questions created on Edmodo are supplemental to our curriculum but nonetheless important in the learning process.  I will assign them as additional homework problems or as warm-up problems. 

After reading How to Achieve Common Core with Tech: the Math Strand, I look forward to using some of the Excel projects in my Computer Application course.  Thank you, Jacqui, for the great ideas!

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Blogs & Common Core

I know that blogs are an effective mean of communication and an innovative educational tool.  I did not know about all the benefits as pointed out in Jacqui Murray's 13 Ways Blogs Teach Common Core.  I began to use blogs last year in my classes and now I remember how much students enjoyed reading each others posts.  They even liked commenting and writing their own blog to generate feedback.  Students can also post music, art, and videos on a blog.  Blogs are the quickest way for students to get feedback which is one of the many common core standards.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Tech Problems

By the time students arrive to high school, they have figured out how to fix most of their computer issues.  If the mouse does not work, they change it for another.  This may not be the best solution but it is the quickest form them.  If the keyboard has missing keys, they swap it for another.  
My students have problems with the tool such as Microsoft Excel.  If we are entering formulas, they may forget to put an equal sign in.  If there answer is wrong, they entered the formula incorrectly.  These are all typical mistakes.  I will have them work with a partner to determine the mistake.  I encourage them to work together.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Here is a screen shot of Desmos.  This was taken from  I use Desmos to create graphs that I can use on tests or project on the Smartboard.  These graphs have gridlines which makes it easier for students to read compared to a TI-84 emulator for Smartboard.  In addition, Desmos has some activities that students can do collaboratively.  This year, I hope to explore one or two of these activities.  This website is geared to high school students.  Let me know if there are any questions.