Thursday, May 5, 2011


Using imovie I created a mock public service announcement for CSUSM 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Jornal 7 My Personal Learning Network (NETS III, & IV)

A personal Learning Network, or PLN is a resource used by teachers to enhance the their teaching skills.  It is other educators, parents, or school personnel who collaborate and share ideas, on how to better improve the teaching and education experience.  To start creating my PLN I have used Twitter, Diigo, and CLassroom 2.0.  These tools will help me as a future educator to reach out to the education community to get ideas, input, and outside viewpoints from a group of people who are passionate about education, so much so that they use and contribute to PLNs.

TWITTER:  I participated in a Twitter discusion through the use of a program called Tweet Chat.  Tweet Chat organizes the discussion, and allows one to pause the conversation, and go back, incase the conversation is happening to fast, or if their is an important piece of information that was missed.  I participated in a group discussion under the hash tag #edchat.  This hash tag lets the user know that all the information they are receiving is from other users using the same hash tag, that way you can know that all the information has to do with education.  The #edchat group meets on Tuesday at 1:00 P.M.  The discussion I participated in was "What specific methods can schools use to involve parents in a positive way?"  I learned that this was the topic by just typing the question "what is today's topic?"  The information came in fits and starts.  First I would see maybe one or two comments appear, but then there would dump like ten or more comments at once.  At first I would pause to try and read all of the comments, but I soon realized that many of the comments did not merit pausing the whole show for.  The other thing is that when I did pause I was even further behind.  I read a couple of really good ideas, one that I really liked was to contact parents once in a while for positive reasons.  Usually a call home means that the student is in trouble in school, so parents start to dread hearing from their child's teachers, I definitely think that we as educators should establish an open line of communication with the parents and get them involved in a way other then as disciplinarian, because that not only alienates the parents, it also makes the students dislike parent involvement.  There were also some bad ideas too.  One person wanted to do "morning muffins with moms, or doughnuts with dads".  Personally I cringed at this idea because I, like many people grew up in a single working mother household.  This idea seems to only benefit children who are already fortunate enough to have parents who are either both involved, or are able to take time in the morning, when most people have to work.  It seems that the parents who need to be reached out to, to be involved, most likely would not have the luxury of being able to attend morning muffins with mom.

Diigo:  Is a great way to find helpful internet sites that have been screened by people who are not out to profit, i.e. advertisers.  Diigo allows you, and other people you follow, to bookmark helpful sites, and to attach key words that will help you locate that page.  For .....


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Journal 9 (NETS I, II, & III)

Waters, J.K. (2011). Teaching Green. t I h I e Journal, 38(4), 13-14.

This article offers several sources for teaching environmental awareness and responsibility. I like the idea of providing environmental education in an interactive website. As kids play with the different websites they will be learning how to better take care of the world they live in, and they may not even be aware of the learning taking place due to the fun, and exploratory nature of navigating the sites. There are also some sources provided for the teacher themselves, like the EPA's site, to provide ideas for environmental based curriculum. It is a good idea to start fostering positive ideas and behaviors towards the environment at a young age, so that students grow up knowing and understanding the impact they have on their world, both positive and negative.

Question 1. What sources are you likely to use in the future?

Answer 1. I really like the site EEK! environmental education for kids. When ever we can make something educational fun, it is a great way to get students excited about learning. I also like the idea of going directly to the EPA's site, that way we can be sure that the facts and ideas we get are rooted with some sort of research to back them up.

Question 2. What are some ways you can create an environmentally responsible classroom?

Answer 2. For starters it is important to have just as many recycling bins as trash bins available. Next I will try to make as many assignments paperless as possible. Lastly I will model clean living by riding a bicycle to school rather than drive, whenever possible.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Journal # 8 (NETS IV & V)

Point/counterpoint: Should Schools be Held Responsible for Cyberbullying?

Bogacz, R., & Gordillo, M.G. (2011). Point/counterpoint: should schools be held responsible for cyberbullying?. Learning and Leading with Technology, 38(6), Retrieved from

The author of the "no" article is nuts. His belief of deteriorating nuclear family being the cause of and solution to bullying is crazy. For starters, bullying has existed as long as children have. To blame the current tide of family structure is a cop out. Secondly the idea that a poorly functioning family is the one to take care of the problem of bullying does not make sense. It is as if we should no longer ask police to arrest criminals, we should instead leave it up to criminals to report their own crimes, and handle their own punishment. The fact of the matter is many families don't look at bullying the same way schools do. Many people think bullying is a natural part of schooling, and therefore do very little to monitor it themselves. The fact is that bullying is a part of school which is exactly why it is the responsibility of the school to monitor, address, and deter bullying as much as possible.
As for the "yes" article, i think the author has the right idea. It would be nice if parents were able to monitor their children's internet usage, but the truth is most can't or don't. This is why teachers need to be vigilant about addressing all forms of bullying wherever or whenever it occurs. The most important job of the teacher is to create a tolerant, safe, setting to facilitate unfettered learning.

Question 1. What can you do in your class to combat cyber-bullying?

Answer 1. I will create a safe environment that children will be able to report bullying. I would like to have some sort of anonymous means of reporting for students who fear reprisal. Also it is important to be blunt about the repercussions, and let students know that words can kill.

Question 2. What roll does the students family play in bullying situations?

Answer 2. The fact is teachers have no control over what happens at home. All we can do is inform parents and request cooperation, but the duty to insure the safety of the students is on the teacher. It is ludicrous to right off bullies as the second author does, saying " it's their parents duty, nothing I can do".

Monday, April 18, 2011

Journal #6 (NETS I, III, IV, V)

Warlick, D. (2009). Grow your personal learning network. Learning and Leading, 36(6), Retrieved from

In this article the author does a good job of clearly explaining why it is important to create and maintain a personal learning network that extends further than the people in your immediate social circle. The next thing the author does well is explain what exactly each tool does and how to use these tools to better expand and maintain a PLN. The author breaks down the PLNs into three categories, the first is personally maintained synchronous connections, which he defines as the people and places we already use to get answers, but he suggests that we can now access these places and people using digital tools. The second category is personally and socially maintained semi-synchronous connections, which he explains is sort of like when someone poses a question to their community using something like twitter, where questions do not get immidiate responses, but almost immidiate. The third category is dynamically maintained asynchronous connections, which he describes as any program that keeps track of content and updates, and holds them until you decide to access them.
The most helpful thing included in this article for me is the ten tips under the "keep it simple" heading. Much of this tech related stuff is hard to retain simply because it seems so vast, and I have to look up about 5-10% of the vocabulary.

Question 1. In what ways do you see a PLN benefiting your classroom?

Answer 1. Posing questions to a PLN is a great way to get outside feedback and fresh new ideas. If you have a PLN that is not digital chances are it is very limited. The member of a digital PLN are constantly growing and changing, therefore you can be sure to get a wide variety of input.

Question 2. What would be a good idea for a new PLN tool?

Answer 2. I think a great tool would be School Book (patten pending). It would be just like facebook, but for educators only. It could be used like facebook to talk about what you did in class that day, what you are planning, and to post pictures of projects and activities. Everyone is on face book, even your mom, so it would not scare away older educators the way that things like Twitter can.