Professional Portfolio

Building my portfolio on wiki spaces ended up being way easier than expected.  I didn't see the moodle quiz for it to be submitted that way, so I'm placing it on the blog.


Real Life in the Classroom

In the video, The Life Practice Model, a student, Colby Razlaff talks of his transition from a traditional school to the Turning Point Learning Center in Kansas.  This school reminded me of the private school my husband teaches at, the Selwyn School.  Looking at the pictures of the Turning Point, reminded me of Selwyn because of the openness of learning.  The students have more a freedom to explore and do more big projects to learn more on their own instead of being stuck in a classroom all day every day.  Their projects, like the life-size skeleton, had to take a lot of preparation and learning of the skeleton before starting to build it.  I like that the students were sent to do it on their own and the teacher wouldn't always tell them that something might go wrong, so they had to figure out the problem on their own.  This makes for a great learning process.

In the video below, Colby talked about how he liked using wikis for class projects.  He said that it made it easier for each group member to stay involved instead of only one person working on all of it because everyone was able to log on and work on the wiki.

I can definitely see myself having my students work on their group projects using a wiki.  The one thing I don't like about group projects is that I feel I'm always stuck doing the work.  So if possible with my remaining classes at UNT, I might try to incorporate a wiki for my next group work assignment in future classes.  That way there is no excuse for the others not to be working on it as well.


Going public with apps!

While watching the video below, Project Based Learning In Hand, I was able to see how students can use different apps to go public with what they have learned.  Sometimes students retain more information when they have to explore a subject on their own, instead of sitting through a classroom lecture.  I didn't know there was an app for the I-Pad that allowed you to use multiple apps at once.  This app is called side by side.  In this video, Tony Vincent showed an example of a presentation he put together and which apps were used for what.

I will be looking up some of the apps that were mentioned in this video.  I thought the comic strip designer would be fun to mess with my pictures and the real director app.  I already have Sonic pics and StoryRobe from when Prof. Fryer introduced them in class.  Since then, I have had my son do a couple short videos and email to his grandparents.  They have been a lot of fun!

One thing Tony talked about was making your rubric with class that you will be grading from.  This allows the students to understand what you're going to be expecting from them, but also gives them the chance to come up with other ways to be graded.  He uses the website Rubristar, which he says is very easy to teachers to manage.  I can definitely see the benefit of making the rubric with the students, since mine will be higher grades.



For my screencasting assignment I decided to upload a photo album while using Facebook.  I really liked using screenr!  It was very easy to use, I just didn't know the only thing that would make it difficult would be me.  It almost seemed liked the more times you needed to record yourself the harder it actually made this assignment.  As you can see below, every time I would rerecord, everything I needed to type in while I was explaining would come up already because I had already done it from previous times.  Even when uploading photos, it automatically took me directly to my photos that I planned to use in the upload, instead of taking me to the start.  So next time, I will definitely know what I plan to touch base on and what I'm going to say, because the more you do this the harder it gets.


I would definitely use this in teaching one day, for example when I need to help explain how to create a Voicethread.  It would be easy for them to go watch my short tutorial before starting it on their own.  Sometimes a piece of paper with a list of instructions isn't all that helpful, but if I include a hyperlink that they can plug in and watch the tutorial on how to create a Voicethread, it may make it easier for those visual learners in my class.  I can see myself using Screenr in my future! :)


My Big Scratch

Yea!  My Scratch is done!  It's fun to play around and to build on top of your creativity, but man, this sure does take some time.  I never looked at the script cards, so that might have been helpful and taken some of the time off.  I was afraid I wouldn't be able to see what I could come up with on my own.  So I tried to limit myself of looking at other projects. 

I knew I wanted to do a scratch that incorporated some type of children's song.  Since I have 3 kids I immediately thought of one of the many songs we sing together.  After coming up with Old McDonald, I thought it would be neat to bring each animal out as it was sang.  Then I messed with some of the Scratch clipart to change the tail of the cow.  Making it seem like it was flipping made it more challenging for all the other animals because I then want them to have their own animation.  I needed the Old McDonald song to play during the Scratch, so instead of looking for a music clip online I just let my kids record it, then rerecord it, and rerecord it some more.  Haha, that was fun! :)  Below is the finished project.

Scratch Project

What I learned with Scratch...with Scratch, you need to be patient.  I think when I first started this project, I had all these ideas, but it takes some time to learn how to maneuver your way through this program.  How ever there are a lot of helpful hints on the Scratch website, especially if you feel completely stuck. 

In my personal life, I have already introduced this program to my son, so I figure, he will continue to get on the computer and come up with his own projects.  When I do become a teacher I imagine I could use this with in my English class.  I plan to teach older ages, so the kids in my class should already be familiar with computers.  Scratch is a pretty easy program, but some children aren't introduced to computers till later.  I could have my students build a scratch to build their own story.  Just like teachers have students write in a daily journal, I could have them build their own Scratch project.  The whole point of having children write what's on their mind is to really help bring out their creative side.  So this may not be such a yucky "writing" assignment and might be something they can have fun with.  All the while I will be able to still hear about their ideas.

I liked my final project in Scratch, now if only I could get the Old McDonald song out of my head.  HA!  But I do feel like I have come a long way since I had my unicorn trotting along the stage.  I do think the more time you put into this program, you're only going to get that much better.  I definitely see how practice makes perfect while using Scratch.

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