Sunday, November 30, 2014

Blog Post Number 5 Part 2

This is the final summary of my PLN for the semester. I can now firmly say that I have a strong PLN. I have utilized Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Symbaloo and Tumblr to create connections with other educators and people across the world. I can say without these my life would probably be much more difficult when it comes to making connection. The best part about these sites is that there really are thousands of people just waiting to link up with you. These are people who have the same passion as you and only want to see others like them succeed which is such a great feeling.

Kids working together

Sunday, November 23, 2014

C4K Summary for November

Elena made a blog post about how she was pledging to not procrastinate any longer. She had at least 9 other signatures on the post and she seemed very proud of it. I said I would sign her pledge and told her she was awesome for making the pledge. I then told her to keep fighting the good fight.

Sebastian D
Sebastian wrote about Real Madrid and how he likes their team. Real Madrid is a soccer team and they are doing quite well this season. I told Sebastian that I really enjoyed soccer as well and that Ronaldo Christiano was my favorite player.

Sebastian D
Sebastian wrote about how he loves this time of the year. He especially loves seeing his family. I told him about I love this time of the year as well. I told him to cherish his family because he will look back on these times and smile.

Blog Post Number 14

This week I was tasked with responding to an article by Joel Klein.

Pick from the best:

For this section of his article Mr.Klein starts by saying that one of the biggest problems with teachers is that we don't start hiring from the top of the teaching class. Instead, he says that we just hire any teacher that applies. He says that by doing this we can help deal with the problem better.

My Response:

 This is my opinion. This isn't a good idea at all. Anyone can follow directions or even pass a few tests and get a diploma. A high score on a test does not mean that you should teach. I can score highly on a fiction paper but that doesn't mean I should be a writer.

His approach to dealing with this issue is very simplistic but I don't think he understands how truly disastrous it would be to try to hire on the teachers at the top of class. Teachers in general aren't paid well at all in the first place so doing that would only serve to even further discourage people from even entering the profession in the first place.

Seniority distraction:
His argument for this is that seniority is inherently bad because it can cause some teachers to become almost impossible to fire. He proposes that there be a way to have their performance monitored.

My Response:
This is my opinion. I agree with him on this. I think that tenure allows for educators to become complacent. This doesn't mean that we do away with it though. It is there for a reason. This is job security for many people who are already in a low paying profession. I think there needs to be a review on renewing the tenure for teachers every seven years. This way it is often enough to oust bad teachers as well as reward new ones.

Radical Change:
He proposes having teachers govern themselves. This way we can better address our own problems.

My Response:
This is my opinion. That won't work because of how people are intrinsically. The teachers aren't paid enough and they aren't given respect in general American society to want to try to police themselves. It would only end up worse off.

Here is the link to article Teaching our children can be a profession: Column

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Blog post Number 13

We were tasked with making our own blog post this week so I thought I would talk about time management with the internet. The internet is vast and it has many things on it. Some of these things are really fun and interesting and some other things not so much. One of the really cool advantages of being connected to the internet is that you can test yourself to see if you manage time well.

What I mean by test yourself is to see how long you can stay on a website or play a game and see if you still get your work done on time. These may seem like distractions but they are actually really eye opening when it comes to understanding how you manage your time. One thing that I have discovered about the internet is that is a giant time sink. Five minutes can turn into two hours if you aren't careful.

Luckily, you can find ways on the internet to help you manage your time better. One of these many devices is an online alarm clock. They can go off after a certain point in time and let you know that it might be time to start working on that assignment. Another great tool is the app Rescue Time. It allows you to see how much time you spend doing any particular thing online or even offline. The results may astound you.

focus booster

Another great app is Focus Booster. It works by helping you set times to start working on things. It takes into consideration things like snack breaks so it is very useful. And one final app is Toggl. Toggl tells you how many times and how much time you have opened or even spent on a project. It is a great way to be aware that you might be spending too much time on your math and maybe not enough time on your science class.


Hopefully my post can help you understand how to better manage time.

C4T #4

Summary: I chose Dr. Will for my C4T this week. His post was about how useful and awesome Google drive is and how it has so many practical applications in everyday life and inside the classroom.

My Comment: I told Dr.Will that I had just recently started using Google drive and that it was so helpful with organizing things. I manage two clubs and as a result managing them has gotten much easier.

Summary: I picked Nicholas Provenzano's blog from my C4T this week. The blog I read was about how he had his students work on a project to create their on creation myths.

My Comment: I said that I really wanted to use this project in one of my classes. I really liked how interactive it was.

Project # 12 Part B

University of South Alabama
Department of Leadership & Teacher Education
Lesson Plan Format

Name:____Group 4______________________________    Date:___11-14-2014______________
School:__USA_______________________________    Grade Level:___first________
Teaching Strategy: Group Work, Demonstration, cooperative learning

    Time Required:___45 min______

I.    Subject/Content Area
Example:  Adding/Subtracting Whole Numbers
II.    Alabama Course of Study
First Grade
(1) Students develop strategies for adding and subtracting whole numbers based on their prior work with small numbers. They use a variety of models, including discrete objects and length-based models (e.g., cubes connected to form lengths), to model add-to, take-from, put-together, take-apart, and compare situations to develop meaning for the operations of addition and subtraction, and to develop strategies to solve arithmetic problems with these operations. Students understand connections between counting
and addition and subtraction (e.g., adding two is the same as counting on two). They use properties of addition to add whole numbers and to create and use increasingly sophisticated strategies based on these properties (e.g., “making tens”) to solve addition and subtraction problems within 20. By comparing a variety of solution strategies, children build their understanding of the relationship between addition and subtraction.
III.    Concepts
List and/or define important vocabulary terms and/or concepts.
Whole Numbers            Missing Addend Model    Addends
Set Model                 Comparison Model        Sum
Measurement ( number line )        Number Line Model
Closure                Associative
Commutative                Identity

IV.    Behavioral Objectives
Students will be able to add and subtract whole numbers
V.    Evaluation (Assessment included here)
Students will complete worksheets on adding and subtracting whole numbers. Students will come up to board and demonstrate.
Teacher observation/student participation is not acceptable without telling specifically what you are looking for.
VI.    Materials - worksheets, pencil, colored pencil, small candy
VII.    Teaching/Learning Procedures
    A.    Motivation
If you have 3 pieces of candy and want 5 more how many pieces of candy do you have now? Provide the students with peppermints or etc.
Students will be able to add and subtract whole numbers. This is used in every day life. They will be able to understand numbers and how to count.
    B.    Instructional Procedures
We will go over Addition of whole numbers a+b=c. Discuss the properties of whole number addition. Learn the set model and number line model. We will work a few examples. Discuss the Subtraction of whole numbers introduce a-b=c. Learn the take away model, missing-addend, comparison model, and number line model.
If you have 5 pencils and you give Emily 2 how many pencils do you have left? If you have 3 markers and Jon has 4 if you put your markers together how many total do you have now? Can you think of things you can add or subtract?
Addends and Sum are all parts of addition equation. Minuends and Subtrahend are parts of subtraction equations. Work examples of addition of whole numbers and subtraction of whole numbers.
This is used in everyday life. If you are buying snacks you need to be able to add how many you need and to subtract what you already have. This is also important for seeing how much material you need.
Give them something to look forward to tomorrow.
We will have suckers etc. and will be adding and subtracting them. You never know you may end up keeping one at the end of the lesson.
Supplemental Activities (Early Finishers, Enrichment, Remediation) Include:
        Students who finish early will be asked/allowed to work with the other students who need help after their work has been checked.
        Students who desire enrichment will be directed to work other examples.
        Students who need remediation in math will be provided assistance to help with adding and subtracting whole numbers.
This must be realistic [working individually with students for remediation is not ALWAYS workable in a busy teacher’s day.]  Some teachers have a chart on the wall that tells what to do so that this does not need to be discussed every time.
Professional Reflection
This should be completed after a lesson has been taught:
    1. Were the instructional objectives met? How do I know that students learned     what was intended?

    2. Were the students productively engaged? How do I know?

    3. Did I alter my instructional plan as I taught the lesson? Why?

    4. What additional assistance, support, and/or resources would have further     enhanced this lesson?

    5. If I had the opportunity to teach the lesson again to the same group of students,     would I do anything differently? What? Why?

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Project Number 10: Interview Movie

C4T# 3

C4T Summary for 10/26/14

Summary: I was given Deb Frazier's blog for my C4T and she made a post about a "Book Bash" which is basically a picnic with reading for kids. You just get as many parents who are interested in helping their child with their literacy and it takes off.

My comment: I just said that I love the idea of a book bash. I think that it really does help kids create relationships with other while helping them learn to read. Which, to me, is extremely important.

C4T Summary for 11/9/14

Summary: I was assigned to Deb Fraziers blog again for my C4T and I read her post about sharing in the classroom. I was more focused on getting the kids to share their thoughts on books or papers. The students had a pretty overwhelmingly positive response to it all.

My comment: I said that I would like to try it out in my classroom. No matter how old you get you never lose that sense of wanting to share what you are thinking with others. I just hope it goes as well as her class did.

Blog Post Number 12

Blog Post #12 Collaborative Group #4

A. This video is just about introducing what Assistive Technology is and why it is important to have the classroom. For example, you could have a blind child in the classroom and as a result they will require a different approach to learning. They are just as smart and able and their able-bodied counterparts. They just need a different kind of help.
By: Sterling Spencer

B. Apple has a range of technological options to help those who have disabilities live their lives to the fullest with their technology.

For the users with vision problems the “Voice Over” will read the screen to them. For those with hearing problems they can access the “Face Time” feature on the phone and can then converse with people face to face. For the users who have diminishing motor skills can utilize the “AssistiveTouch” features in the IOS. The IOS also has features to assist those with attention deficit or cognitive disabilities stay on task.
By: Sterling Spencer

  1. The Mountbatten brailler is introduced to be a way to incorporate the blind into the classroom curriculum. This device allows the student to type what he or she is trying to say and the device prints the message in braille and reads the message back to the student in the process. The Mountbatten saves files and is able to transfer and receive files from the computer. This gives the blind an opportunity to achieve all academic goals they have set for themselves.
By: Paula Holt

  1.      Technology never ceases to amaze me!! In Teaching Math to the Blind, Professor Karshmer discusses the difficulties of teaching math to the blind while he demonstrates how to use his innovative device that will make it simple and easy to teach math to the visually impaired.
                 For sighted children, it is very easy to explain a math problem on the board because        
           they can see how the numbers line up vertically. They then can add/subtract/divide/                                     
           multiply accordingly. But for blind students, Braille does not line up just so. Their            
           numbers stay linear and they can only read them from left to right. This makes math way  
           harder for them to figure out. But with Professor Karshmer’s device, students can scan
           numbered tiles which tells them what number each tile is. They then can place it
           anywhere on the board and line up tiles to make problems easier for them to feelbraillepic.gif
           and figure out. Such a simple creation but it has a remarkable impact on it’s particular set
           of students. I personally have a very close friend who is blind and just from talking to
           him I know that it is extremely difficult to get a job if you are blind. With math skills your
           chances increase drastically. That’s why technology is such a huge must for students
           with special needs.
By:Taylor Gray
  1.     Another more familiar piece of technology that is becoming increasingly important for the blind is the Ipad. It’s so refreshing to see something so popular being put to good use
           for once! After watching ipad Usage for the Blind, I’m so amazed at what Apple has
           done! Using the Ipad for the blind is simple and so easy for them to hear and understand
           what they are doing while they are using their Ipad. This opens so many doors for them.
           Now they can create and store all kinds of information and easily access it without any
           outside help. I know that there are other forms of technology that have been made
           accessible for the blind, but according to my friend who is blind, most of these devices
           are very expensive. An Ipad isn’t cheap but it is attainable. It is also being used more
           and more in schools. This gives special needs teachers an easy tool to interact with
           with their blind students and give them a chance to feel in control! By: Taylor Gray

E. In this video we see someone showcasing the “Voice Over” feature on the Ipad. You can turn it on and the screen will read everything on it to you. It will even tell you when there is nothing there. It will even offer suggestions to help you out.
By: Sterling Spencer

  1. Denise shows us how learning on the ipad is simple and easy for someone who is blind. By simply running your finger over the screen the ipad tells you what app or program you are about to click on. It is set to double tap, so when you are over the app you need you can double tap anywhere on the screen and it opens the app. The keyboard is the same way making it easier to send messages for someone who can only hear. This is a great tool for a blind person to communicate with the world. I feel this is a great aspect and will go a long way for the people who simply can’t see, but have all the dreams just like the ones of people with vision.
By: Paula Holt
  1. Special Education isn’t for everyone. It takes a calm, cool, collected, organized , and confident person to work with the special needs. Teaching can become overwhelming, so it is great to have a variety of options in your PLN. Working with parents and other teachers can offer many new ideas to help the special needs. Jeff Dunn has created an article 50 Must-See Blogs For Special Education Teachers.  This article provides 50 blogs for you to add into your PLN. Jeff has broke them down into different groups making them easier to find what you need. Special Education Teaching Tips and Strategies, Technology and Assistive Technology, Special Topics, Special Education News and Policy, Special Education Law, and Various Topics on Special Education. Expanding your PLN allows you access to many ideas you can incorporate in your lesson plans.

By: Paula Holt

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Project Number 14

Here is the example project:
Example Project

Here is the lesson plan
Lesson Plan

Here is the calendar

Here is the rubric
The Rubric

Driving Question: What song is this?

Blog Post Number #11

For this blog post I was asked what we could learn from a series of videos about project based learning. Before I start, I want to say thank you for including videos with high school teachers and their perspectives. It really is helpful to see how they implement PBL in their classroom as opposed to elementary school students.

Alright, so I think from the videos I watched I think we can learn that PBL takes many different forms. It isn't a specific kind of lesson. It can go from the upkeep of a blog to creating a hot air balloon and launching it into the atmosphere. All of these work because the students can learn a multitude of skills from the project.

What I think is great about the videos is that they all present wildly different examples of PBL. I have to admit I was surprised about how many types of projects work for PBL. I really did enjoy the Q.U.IV.E.R.S. acronym and how he managed to implement it into the class.

Here are the videos I watched for the blog post.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Blog Post Number 10

I watched the interview with Mrs. Cassidy and I personally thought it was somewhat helpful. My goal is to go into urban areas to teach. One that don't have all of the advantages wealthier schools have. As a result I need to learn how to bring technology to them and learn to teach them with it. She said in the video that she found blogs useful in her class room. She said that it is exciting for her students to know that someone was reading and it made them feel good. I want to transfer that same feeling to the teens I intend to teach.

To them it feels like society has forgotten them and I think that is the perfect way to help them realize they haven't been forgotten. I do see a problem with this however. Not all of them will have access to the internet. In this day and age we expect that every person should have access but that simply isn't the case. Many of the students I will have will have trouble making sure they eat. It would be ridiculous for me to expect them to have an internet connection.

To deal with this problem I intend to take them to the library every Monday and Thursday. This gives them a guaranteed internet connection.

Here is a video I watched

Project# 12

I apologize for the name of the video. It was the only way my phone would let me upload it.

C4K Summary for October

Andrea wrote a summary about a book she had read. It was a little disjointed so I asked for a little clarification on some of the stuff she wrote. I also asked her how she would feel if she suddenly became famous.

Claire W
Claire wrote a summary for a book she is reading in class. She asked me what I thought and I told her I was sure everything would work out. I told her she did a good job with the post and left.

Kiersten wrote about her family and how she loved apple juice. I introduced myself and told her that she did a good job on her post. I told her about how I liked apple juice too.

Maroroa wrote about how to be a good student at his school. I introduced myself and told him I agreed with him on two points. Those being that good manners are key to being successful and that being smart online is very important especially for someone his age.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Blog Post# 9

I watched a few videos about project based learning and I was asked about what we could learn from them. I think this answer is simple. We can learn how to teach children to work toward a goal over time. At least, that is what I took away with it.

Far too often do we give students short term goals and tell them to do it alone and in a timely manner. That simply isn't a good way to teach. In the real world they will have to learn to work together with other individuals toward a goal. What better way to start them on that path than by teaching them that way.

It doesn't have to be a ridiculous project that requires months to complete but a one that can't be done in a day. A projects that gets them to put their learning caps is one that you should strive for. That's pretty much what I managed to learn from the videos. What about you?

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Blog Post #8

I think there is so much that we can really take away from this video. I think it is inspiring how he managed to make all his dreams come true. He never stopped believing that it was possible. I think that is something that we all do too often is give up. We have to start remembering that as long as we never give up the dream is always attainable.

Another thing he said that I really liked was that people can surprise you. They really can. You should always give people a chance. There are countless times in history that giving someone a chance has paid off so much. Be generous and it can come back on you.

Another thing, I was very fond of what he said about giving up was that "if someone stops trying to correct you they have already given up." That is so true. Never give up on your kids. They might give up on themselves but you don't. I really feel like out of the video those stuck out so much.

Project #9

This is Group 4's Video Book Commentary.


C4T Summary for 9/28/14

Blog Summary:I was given Mr. Wickens blog on P.E. again as my assignment. The post was about how it is important to outline objectives for students. This allows them to know what they will be able to do by the end of the lesson. It acts as a nice goal for them to strive for.

My Comment: I read his post on outlining objectives. They were very well done and I told him I could certainly see myself using them when I get my classroom.

C4T Summary for 10/12/14

Blog Summary: I was given iplantes as my blog to comment on. I read the post about growth and fixed mindsets. It talked about people who have an open mindset do better in all facets of life.

My Comment: I introduced myself as a student at the University of South Alabama. I then said that I really enjoyed the chart they posted about the mindsets. I said I could think of so many people with a fixed mindset.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Project 7 Part B

Blog Post #7

I was tasked with watching a few videos. I found most of them really useful and informative. My thoughts are below.


I think I gained a good bit from this. The most important part of this being that as an English teacher I can utilize this as a way to help students study. I could even read the stories to them if I really wanted to. In this age most teens have smartphones so they could actually benefit from something like this.


In this video IPad reading centers are being used to help kids learn to read. Unfortunately, for the grade level I would be teaching this won't be very useful. However, I could still use this as a cool way for me to teach my class without being there. Which will be great for days I know I won't be at school.


This video is about Poplet and how it can be used to help students learn to type better as well as group visuals with text. Once again, this would be great with children of a much younger age as opposed to high school age children. However, it could be used for things like projects and the like if implemented correctly.


I actually used the Alabama Virtual Library when I was in school and I am glad to see that is still a popular tool being used today. I will actually be giving my students an assignment to acclimate them to the AVL so this video was great!


For this video it is showing off Discovery Education Builder. This is pretty good for looking for cool information about things like science or in history. I could see myself using this if I want to add a historical element to me work.


This video shows you how to incorporate Board Builder into your class. I can see this being useful for presentations in class.


The central thing I took away from this video was that you never stop learning. Every generation will be smarter than the last. We need to learn to let them teach us as well and we can really advance as a society.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Project# 7

My Passion is...
My Sentence is...

Project# 3 Presentation

Blog Post Number 5

My Personal Learning Network

A Personal Learning Network(PLN) is a network of resources a person can tap into to gain information on a variety of things. As a teacher they can keep you in contact with other educators. It also has the neat ability to give you ideas about things to try in your classroom. They are formed through meeting people with similar interests through social media. You can make your own by getting out there and talking to people. The more outgoing you are the more people will want to network with you. I think my first additions to my PLN will be my high school teachers.

PLN summary on 9/21: I think I have a pretty robust PLN. I effectively use social media to my advantage when it comes to making contacts. I utilize Facebook for keeping in touch with people from far away places. I also am utilizing twitter so that I can keep up to date with other teachers. For now those are my only two but I am very adept at using both of them.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

C4K Summary for September

C4K Summary for Texas on 9/7/14:
I introduced myself and let Texas know that I thought it was awesome that her cared about the environment. I spoke a little on how we treat the environment in America. I then wished him luck on his crusade on environmental preservation.

C4K Summary for Texas 9/14/14
I commented on his post about Cross Country. I told him that I used to run Cross country in high school and that I was always tired after I ran it as well. I congratulated him on finishing the run.

C4K Summary for Patrick 9/21/14
I introduced myself and started to tell him that it was very impressive that he could feel sympathy for characters even though he hadn't met them. I also asked for some more details in his blog post.

C4K Summary for Texas 9/28/14
I told Texas that I really enjoyed capture the flag. It is one of my favorite sports to play. I told him to keep up the good work.

Project #15

I found a few search engines that I think are very useful. Some have very specific uses but they all are nice alternatives to Google.

1. Dogpile- This website is sort of what Google was before it was invented. You can think of it as a fun website that complies links from other search engines.

2. Ask-This is a nice search engine. It is really sleek and it is very good at grouping the results together.

3. Bing- This search engine is great because unlike Google it thinks. It seeks to help the user by actually pulling up a website that matches the description.

4. Wolfram Alpha- Wolfram Alpha is a conceptual search engine. It looks for all data and gathers it for the user.

5. Yahoo- A much more social search engine. It tries to find fun and interactive results with its search engine.

6. DuckDuckgo- This search engine finds the information and can set it up for you on the results page.

7. Webopedia- A free online search engine that also acts as an encyclopedia.

8. Mahalo- This search engine is powered by humans. Humans that sift through links and give good results.

Blog Post Number 4

How do you ask an effective question?
This very question often comes up in most teaching classes. The answer is simple. You ask an effective open ended question. Asking closed questions isn't an effective way to elicit a good response. Asking questions that allow the person answering them to respond with more than one word are called open ended questions. These questions force the person answering them to recall the material they learned and requires them to answer the question with it.

For example,essay questions are great examples of open ended questions. They require the student to explain thoroughly why they thought and answered the way they did. This is a truly fair and effective way to gauge whether or not your students understand the material. If they aren't able to answer the question effectively then it might be best to rethink your teaching strategy.

Here are some links for more information as well as a few videos to watch.


I was assigned to Ross Wickens. He runs a P.E. blog and is extremely passionate about physical fitness and its effects on young people.

Post# 1: This particular post was about how he wanted to start a newsletter and an E-magazine for physical fitness. He felt that needed another way to stay active and connected when he was online and he thought this was the best way to stay active.

My Comment: I introduced myself and let him know that he inspired me to try to do the same. I found it rare that you have so many teachers who still love what they do after so long. I let him know that I hope his online magazine takes off.

 Post# 2: This post was about how useful Google Chrome is. He explained how Google Chrome has a few advantages over the other browsers and that it is incredibly easy to use. It is also is a great tool for students. It allows them a large amount of versatility in the features. Features like bookmark synching and optional accounts are invaluable to students.

My Comment: I introduced my self once more and began to recount my time with internet browsers. I told him how I started with Internet Explorer and eventually upgraded to Firefox. I then told him how much I enjoy Google Chrome as a nice back-up browser. I thanked him for the write up and said my goodbyes.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Blog Post Number 3

Learning About Peer Reviews

From the videos and slideshow I saw, I can definitely tell you there is a right and a wrong way to give a peer review. It is important to make sure that you stay positive but you don't get wrapped up in being nice that you forget to offer good criticism. When you offer criticism make sure that you are being specific and that you are offering advice. Don't waste that person's time by just telling them general statements. Being specific is something to strive for.

Another important point to remember about peer reviewing is that you need to make sure that you stay on topic. It can be tempting to go off topic at times when you are conversing. Fight the urge and focus on your task at hand. One final thing to remember is that you are working with another person. Don't be overly rude to them if you find a mistake. Remember to correct and always leave on a positive note.

Here are the links to the videos and the slide show.

The three peer editing rules.